#6 – The Sagai & Mendhi

Before I talk about this day, let me explain what a Sagai is. A Sagai, pronounced suh-gai, is a pre-Wedding ceremony. It is essentially an engagement. Back in the day, a Sagai would take place at home. It involves the grooms family visiting the bride’s home and telling her family that they are willing to accept their daughter & have acknowledged that they will be responsible for her future well being.

In this case, the Sagai rituals were performed at a banqueting suite. The night before the event, at around 5.30pm, the clients came in to drop off a few things. They hadn’t taken anything from us – no chair covers & no table covers, so the venue was set up without any decoration. However, they decided that they DID want them because they didn’t realise the state of the chairs. We obviously couldn’t disappoint our clients, so we had to hire it all in last minute.

They were extremely happy with how the venue looked in the end.

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There were 15 tables set up for 150 guests as you can comfortably seat 10 guests to a table. The rest of the chairs were set up theatre style.

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With the theatre style seating, there were 270 chairs. Overall, we catered for 420 guests for the Sagai.

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The reason that the hall was set up this way is because there were rituals performed on stage with both the families, so it wouldn’t have made sense to have tables & chairs around the whole venue. Theatre style seating allows all attention to be focused to one key area, which in this case, was the stage.

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So what’s the point of the tables & chairs? This ceremony started at around 10:00am. By midday, you’re going to have some hungry guests.

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There was a buffet set up in the bar area, and instead of having one single line, it was split in two which helps the queue move quicker. There was constantly someone running in & out of the kitchen, making sure each bowl was full and refilling the ones that were almost empty or cold. As long as you have enough staff to cater to that event, you should have no issues.

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It was lovely.

After lunch, there was a 2 hour break where all the guests went home and got changed. During this time, we had the chance to redress the venue and transform it into a Mendhi night. We had to bring out 3 extra tables and remove 240 chairs. There was an outside decorator who came in to dress up the stage to a Mendhi set up. We were catering for 180 guests in the evening.

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It’s a lot more colourful & bright compared to the earlier stage. The guests that attend the Mendhi night sit on the gaardlas which are the sofa looking strips in front of the stage. There were two Mendhi artists sitting on the stage, on the left and right hand side. From 8pm – 10pm, they were pretty much continuously doing Mendhi on all the girls.

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It was a really nice day, especially due to the fact that the bride & groom & families & caterers & decorators all kept to their times. Nobody was late so nothing got delayed.

When clients walk out of your venue extremely satisfied with everything we had done for them; with all the help that they had received throughout the day to make sure the day ran smoothly; with all the last minute changes and services we provided so as not to disappoint them; it is such a heartwarming feeling. They all left saying ‘thank you’ and that it was an amazing day.

It’s times like this that make the long shifts & hard times bearable.

If you’ve made it this far through, I salute you.

I look forward to writing more event-based posts.. I’ve got quite a few different things lined up.

Till next time ☺

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