To have and to hold

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VietnamNet English - 54 month(s) ago 7 readings

To have and to hold

Celebrity wedding planner Long Kan (not pictured) organized

VietNamNet Bridge - Ho Chi Minh City wedding planners spare no expense on no-holds-barred extravaganzas, but Hanoi couples prefer simpler, quieter parties.

this “camping” wedding for a young couple in HCMC

No Vietnamese wedding has matched the 60-millioneuro (US$90.62 million) nuptials of billionaire steel-magnate Lakshmi Niwas Mittal’s daughter Vanisha Mittal Bhatia, but Ho Chi Minh City marriage parties are certainly getting more extravagant.

Wedding planner Long Kan puts together $20,000 affairs regularly and he says it’s just the beginning as he plans to officially launch his “wedding planning services” company this December, aiming to cater only to the hottest celebrities and wealthiest socialites.

Saigon A-listers here are now willing to pay top dollar for the best wedding planners, who create exclusive, status-conscious parties. Even with the most profligate extravaganzas, price is of no concern to the bold and beautiful.

Long’s first major wedding was for his friend, model and actress Truong Ngoc Anh. He described the event as a “splash.”

The wedding, with 20 masked bride-maids holding candles on a fur-covered stage, impressed nearly 700 guests in 2006.

Long offers end-to-end or “a-la-carte” services and says that his strength is in creating a distinct program for each wedding, with each event reflecting the couple’s unique personalities.

He said his services start with designing the invitations and end with the planning of the honeymoon.

Capital style

While HCMC has always been known as the land of embellishment, Hanoi is known for its simplicity and thriftiness. The reputations prove true: while southern weddings grow more indulgent a new trend in Hanoi has many couples holding minimalist, self-planned weddings.

Nguyen Anh Minh, an employee at a foreign company in the capital, and his fianceé created a different kind of wedding in reaction to what some say are gaudy and tacky traditional celebrations.

Instead of neon lights and blaring karaoke speakers for 200, they held a smaller buffet dinner for 60 guests at a quiet resort outside Hanoi.

With little planning, Minh said he and his bride were able to relax.

“We don’t want to waste too much time and energy on a traditional wedding full of tiresome formalities”

“I’ve seen many people exhausted by their ‘happy day’ and in the end they’re not happy at all, so, I just wanted to mark our wedding with a small party of important guests,” Minh said.

Another Hanoi couple, Doan Duong and Ngoc Bich from Lang Ha Street, entertained their guests with a one-hour video about their love story, including the troubling times while Duong was away studying in England.

Such events require no planners and use up far less money, but how comfortable or explosive a wedding is still depends on who’s getting married.

Wedding planners

In HCMC:

Hai Dong Photo:

224A Pasteur Street, Ward 6, District 3 (collaborates with Erosore Wedding Planning)

Quoc Huy:

112 Nguyen Dinh Chinh Street, Phu Nhuan District

Le Huy Photo:

77-79 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Binh Thanh District

In Hanoi:

Nguyen Dinh Catering Services Company:

453 Nguyen Khang Street, Cau Giay District

Lotus Event & Travel Company:

28 Dao Duy Tu Street, Hoan Kiem District

Prelpan Thai Wedding Center:

306 Tay Son Street, Dong Da District

VietNamNet/Thanh Nien

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