Hyatt Wedding | Nimarta + Chris | Estero Wedding Photography


Chris and Nimarta first met in September of 2013 in Wellington, New Zealand. Chris had just moved to Wellington from the United States, looking for a new start and new opportunities. Nimarta had just moved to Wellington after a year of travelling, also looking for a new start and a less stressful job than she had the previous years. They first started talking online, where Nimarta had been intrigued by the mysterious American that had travelled the world and was now living in New Zealand.

It didn’t take long for Chris and Nimarta to fall for each other. “When you know, you know,” Chris likes to say. Just a week after meeting they had already planned a vacation to Southeast Asia together. There were no doubts on either end that this was it. They just clicked right away and neither had to do anything to impress the other. Just being themselves was enough. They originally bonded over a mutual love or travel and adventure and that holds true to this day.

Chris had been planning the proposal for a while. Nimarta’s 30th birthday was coming up and they were going to be in the Himalayas. He wanted to do a Mount Everest proposal – it was fitting for their lifestyle. They were blessed with a beautiful morning on Wednesday October 8, 2014, just the fourth day of the trek. As they passed the Tenzing Norgay monument, north of Namche Bazaar, a beautiful panorama of Everest came into view. Chris gave Nimarta’s camera to their guide and told him to keep taking pictures. Then after they posed for a few pictures in front of the mountain he gave her a birthday card that said all sorts of nice things. While she was reading Chris dropped down to one knee with the ring and popped the question. After a few “oh my Gods” she finally said yes. A small audience clapped for the newly engaged couple and they posed for some more pictures. Engaged at Mount Everest! A week later they had an official Indian Ring Ceremony and other parties in India to celebrate their engagement with Nimarta’s family.

The wedding was almost immediately set for Dec 5, 2015 due to their dream honeymoon in Antarctica, which would need to be during the Northern Hemisphere winter. A Florida destination wedding was the perfect idea for a couple who loved travelling and had friends all over the country and world. They settle on the Hyatt Coconut Point Resort & Spa after countless days of online research in the South Florida area, due to the facilities and opportunity to have their beach wedding on a private island. The wedding planning was done from New Zealand with the help of a local wedding planner, Courtney Gabelbauer. It was a fun, but sometimes very stressful process for the couple, trying to plan a wedding from so far away that would incorporate two totally different cultures into one event. On top of that a lot of details and décor was custom made and shipped from India. A standard “white wedding” was chosen for the ceremony with an Indian fusion reception.   The wedding date fell in between a four month vacation for the couple, as they were relocating from New Zealand to the Netherlands.

After over a year of preparation the day finally came. Friends and family had gathered from over 13 different states and four different countries at the Hyatt in Bonita Springs, FL – the day was blissful. The celebrations had already been going on for a few days, as some friends and family had arrived early, but the big day was what they were all here for. Nimarta had an early morning getting ready while Chris got to sleep in and relax with his friends before getting ready after lunch. They had chosen to do a first look in the courtyard before the ceremony in order to save time in photographs before the reception. Chris was all ready when Nimarta tapped him on the shoulder from behind. He immediately got weak in the knees at the sight of his beautiful bride in her wedding dress. After photographs it was finally time to take the boat to the island where they would be married. The skies had been fighting off the rain all day. Tensions were high in the afternoon as pockets of rain fell on the resort. But the clouds were moving fast and the decision was made to continue with the outdoor ceremony. The guests loaded the boat first and Nimarta and Chris took a private boat 10 minutes later. As they sailed across the estuary the skies cleared to a beautiful double-rainbow and dolphons jumping in the background. As Chris walked down the aisle with Reverent Dr. Jim Berger the guests were already seated in anticipation of Nimarta’s grand entrance. The wedding party entered followed by the adorable flower girl, and finally the veiled bride escorted by her mother and father. Though they had already seen each other in the first look the moment was emotional for both of them, and each had to fight back the tears as Nimarta approached Chris at the altar. The ceremony was short, but beautiful, and was the most memorable part of the wedding for the newlywed couple. The sun had finally decided to show and was shining brilliantly over the altar as the ceremony progressed. After exchanging self-written vows they excitingly said “I do” and were married by the reverend as the sun cast a ray of beaming light on their first kiss. As the sunset over the Gulf of Mexico some more photographs were taken while guests were enjoying cocktails on the beachfront deck. Nimarta changed into a traditional Indian bride outfit before the reception and the mix of cultures was on display at the fabulous reception inside the Calusa Ballroom.  After a fantastic Indian dinner, Chris surprised Nimarta with a rendition of ‘Love Across the Bay’ a song he wrote for her soon after they met. DJ played a mix of Bollywood and American dance music, the kids started out the dance party DJ and everyone danced the night away in celebration of Chris and Nimarta. After a few days in Fort Lauderdale the couple headed to South America for a magical and adventurous seven-week honeymoon that took them to Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, and most importantly Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic islands, making their dream honeymoon a reality. They are now looking forward to starting their married life together in the Netherlands!

Wedding Planner: Courtney from Fabulously Chic Weddings
Bride’ Dress Ceremony: Oleg Cassini (bought from David’s Bridal)
Bride’s Dress Reception: Frontier Baazaar, Delhi, India
Groom’s Outfit: Men’s Warehouse
Make-up: Kellie Hecklar
Hair: Kari Myers
Officiant: Rev. Dr. Jim. R. Berger
Photographer: New Ground Photography

Videographer: Deni Domi Films
Flowers: Libby’s Flowers
Wedding Arch: Island events
Rentals: Island Events, Altar Elements & Prop Closet. (And lots of other stuff that was custom made and shipped from India!)
Catering: India Palace
Wedding Cake: Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa
Music/DJ: Jim Gable from Stereophonic DJ’s
Lighting: ORyan Sound

Stationary: Wedding Inc, Mumbai, India and Dana Marino
Custom Painting Welcome Sign: The Messy Painter
Venue: Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa
Transport/Boat to the island: All Water Excursions

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