Search the Site

Written by Savi, 21 Comments

There’s a running joke amongst our friends. If the two of us are invited to a wedding in the town we live, we won’t make it (because we are perpetually on the go!). However if we are invited to a wedding 10,000 miles away, we will definitely make it. Can you blame us? The lure of seeing a new destination while attending a friend’s wedding – who wouldn’t be tempted?


When one of Vid’s closest friends from university days in Singapore announced his wedding in Melaka, a small town near Kuala Lumpur, guess who the first guests to RSVP were?


We flew from London to Kuala Lumpur and reached Melaka on the day of the wedding. Reunited with our friends who flew from Paris, we got dressed, all set to take on the day. The entire day went by in a tizzy as we chatted, celebrated, ate and then ate some more 🙂


chinese wedding
The two of us with the bride and groom 🙂


The wedding festivities began in the morning, when the groom and his troop of friends and brothers arrived at the bride’s place to “fetch” her. Also known as the gatecrashing ceremony, fetch-the-bride sees the groom participate in fun games and bribe the bridesmaids to get to his bride. Sounds fun, doesn’t it?


Chinese Wedding
The groom and his troop arrive to fetch the bride (Photo Credit: David Chew)


Next up the wedding reception in the evening. Food and wine started pouring in almost as soon as we were shown to our table and it never stopped. Unending food and drink – always the sign of a good party! There were eight courses but my favourite would have to be the elaborate entrée platter that was served on a bed of dry ice. Take a look at this piece of art:


chinese wedding
Entrée Platter – notice the cloud of dry ice?


Chinese Wedding
Pork scratchings – did you notice the piggie tail at the end?


We spent some time acquainting ourselves with two families who were hosting the party and learning some bad words in Chinese. Before we knew it the groom (David) was welcoming the bride (June) who looks absolutely resplendent in a sparkly white gown. David is an opera singer and photographer and he left no stone unturned to woo his wife in front of his family and friends. The next hour flew past as he sang for his wife (cue unending ‘awwws’) and showcased a host of videos compiled from photographs he had clicked over the years. Can you blame June for shedding a tear?


Chinese wedding
David sings for June


Before we knew it, the two of them did a disappearing act (not what you think 😉 ) and changed into traditional Chinese wedding costumes. The regal attire was unlike anything we had ever seen before. They looked picture perfect. We’ll put an end to the swooning and just show you a photograph instead :-


chinese wedding
The bride and groom in traditional Chinese wedding attire


By this time all those glasses of wine and the cognac served by David’s dad and brother had obviously gotten to our heads, the proof of which you see below:


chinese wedding
We had some fake moustaches at hand and we put them to VERY good use 😉


Chinese Wedding
Tomfoolery part 2 😉


chinese wedding
The cutest of them all


The sensible thing to do would’ve been to stop and retire to our hotel rooms like all the other guests at the wedding. But we never said we were prudent did we? So we continued the party with our friends at the food court next door. We don’t remember much of what conspired next – always the sign of an excellent night 😉


chinese wedding
All of us at a local food court in Melaka


Fact File

Here are five things we bet you didn’t know about Chinese weddings:

  • Shark Meat might be a taboo topic in the rest of the world but Shark Fin Soup is a staple at Chinese weddings. It is symbolic of the prosperity of the host.
  • Most Chinese couples don’t register for gifts. Instead guests offer cash, known as Ang Pao, in ornate envelopes to the newly weds.
  • We found it amusing that guests started leaving the wedding venue as soon as dinner got over. A Chinese wedding isn’t the place for you if you like partying late into the night 😉
  • Food is scrumptious and plentiful – from pork scratchings and sushi to honey glazed chicken and grilled fish, everything is on the menu. David and June’s wedding dinner consisted of eight courses – nom!!!
  • The ritual of toasting the newly weds is the highlight of Chinese weddings. Everyone stands, raises their glasses to toast the newly weds and a resounding  Yum Seng (cheers) follows. It was our favourite part of the wedding.


Chinese Wedding
Yum Seng – toasting the newly-weds


This was the first stop on our recent trip to South East Asia. After exploring Melaka, we flew to Cambodia.


21 thoughts on “About the time we attended a Chinese Wedding

  1. Chinese wedding seems to be fun 😀 . The wedding couple is super cute. The entree platter looks too colorful and yummy 🙂

  2. That’s amazing. I had no clue about Chinese wedding but it sounds superb, especially the food minus pig tail (no offense) I wouldn’t have noticed if it wasn’t in the caption hehe The bride and groom look lovely. God bless them and happy married life. Sure looked like a great party. I know the name Melaka because where I went to college, they’ve set up a branch in Melaka too. What was the place like? Any more pics and posts on Melaka? i would love to read 🙂

    1. Melaka was beautiful. It’s a charming little town. We’ll be writing about it in a few weeks with lots of information and pictures 🙂

    1. 🙂

      We are definitely very lucky to have friends all over the world. Makes travelling all the more fun if you have locals to take you around to the hidden places 🙂

  3. Looks like such a fun wedding and Melaka would be the perfect location to celebrate! Didn’t you find the town totally charming?! 🙂 I was just there about a week ago for my second visit and I enjoyed it just as much the second time around.

    1. Hey Audrey,

      Melaka was amazing – we had such a good time there. It’s so charming and gorgeous. And the food – my God. It’s to die for, isn’t it ??

      We were there around Chinese New Year and everyone was so happy. We loved the hello kitty rickshaws too 😉

    1. It was our first time at a Chinese wedding too and we had such a blast 🙂 So good to see ceremonies in different cultures, isn’t it ?

  4. When was the actual wedding ceremony? What type of ceremony was it? Buddhist? Taoist? Some hybrid of different traditions? We also love attending weddings. So far, our favorite are Indian weddings. Fun even without copious amounts (if any) of alcohol or meat.

    1. Suzanne,

      The actual wedding ceremony was in the morning 🙂 It was definitely a lot of fun – there was some alcohol involved, but we saved the majority of that for the after party 😉

  5. Why was your companion wearing RED and your other lady friend wearing BLACK? Even if your friends who were getting married didn’t mind in this day and age, their parents or elderly relatives might have been very unhappy. Traditionally, one does not wear white, black, or red to a Chinese wedding. (Red = propitious color, reserved for the bride that day; Black and White = colors of mourning, not what one does at a wedding. – white or black (or red) accents are fine)

    1. Oooh we had no idea. Our Chinese friend didn’t mention anything either but will definitely keep this in mind in the future

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *