Dubai has been home now for more than ten years. We are very fortunate that when the weather gets too hot here in the summer, we can head back to the cooler climate in Lincolnshire, UK.
Did someone mention the weather? We British love talking about it. We can talk to complete strangers about it for hours. It’s a pastime!
So, as we are talking about the weather, Dubai…….what a glorious winter it is in this city. From October through to April, the weather is nearly always perfect. Not too hot, not too cold.
I have been known to reach for a jumper in the evening during December and January but the days are perfect.
During these six to seven months here in Dubai, it is the best time to hold your wedding ceremony if you want it to be outdoors.
Destination Weddings here in Dubai are very popular for British couples during those 7months. Sometimes though, I find that the couple’s family can struggle with the heat even in October, November and December and always recommend that they provide hand held fans and make sure plenty of water is on hand.
Even though it is winter here, coming from colder climates to this temperature can still be a shock to the system and no couple wants their guests to feel uncomfortable.
Choosing the right time of day to start the wedding ceremony is crucial. Avoid midday sun so you and your guests are more comfortable. Choose a photographer that you find easy to communicate with as they will be by your side for a lot of the day and will be able to advice on the right times of the day for the best lighting.
Venues? Well, Dubai has no shortage of amazing places for you to hold your wedding ceremony.
There are lush green gardens in most of the hotels and so many of them are also right on the beach so you could actually have the best of both. Check out @ritzcarltondubai_weddings @waldorfdubai @kempinskipalm @oothepalm
The opportunity for great photos is endless.
If opting for a beach ceremony, always ask the hotel if that certain part of the beach can be cornered off just while the ceremony takes place. Nothing worse than a few sunbathing tourists, watching your ceremony in the background, with only their swimmers on!
Fortunately, most hotels are very aware of this and just plot up a security guard who kindly asks on lookers to keep on walking.
If you are holding your wedding ceremony during the summer months, be aware that the temperature can reach mid to late 40’s most days and an outdoor ceremony would not be ideal.
Last June I conducted a ceremony on board the Queen Elizabeth 2 @qe2dubai
This historic ocean cruise liner is now docked in Dubai and is a floating hotel and restaurant. They have a fantastic ballroom which is ideal for an indoor ceremony and caters for big and small parties alike.
There was something very special about conducting a wedding ceremony on board the QE2 and you could just sense the excitement from the guests, who had travelled from all over the world to be there.
Another important factor to consider when planning your wedding over here in Dubai……when is Ramadan.
Ramadan, observed by Muslims worldwide every year, is a month of fasting, prayer, reflection and community. It can last between 29 and 30 days, from one sighting of the crescent moon to the next. The date therefore, changes every year. This is something your planner or the venue would explain if your date fell during that period and whether there would be any kind of restrictions imposed.
So, from thousands of guests in grand ballrooms to a handful of family and friends on the beach, anything is possible here in Dubai.
Remember, having a Celebrant led Ceremony, you are not restricted by any law or legislation and can have your wedding ceremony before or after a legal marriage.
Some of my couples have done the legal part of signing their marriage certificate months before and some decide to do it after their ceremony.
As your Celebrant, there is no need for me to see any marriage certificate prior to the ceremony, as the wedding is not legally binding. You can however sign a Wedding Certificate and have witnesses during the ceremony. Please see my blog about the difference between a marriage and a wedding.
Good luck with all your planning and deciding on a venue. It can be stressful so take your time, have lots of questions ready and try and enjoy the whole process.
See you on the beach……………or on board a ship!