My ideas may be modern, but I’m a sucker for tradition: For the cover shoot of this year’s Weddings & Honeymoons special, Pooja Hegde effortlessly transforms into the modern Indian bride. Between shots, Hegde talks to us about her dream destination wedding, places that evoke romance, and bridal stereotypes that she’d like to break. By Anushka Goel
T+L India: What does travel mean to you?
Pooja Hegde: Travelling is like finding a bit of my soul in different places, but at the same time leaving behind a part of me in every place I go to. I’ve met different people and understood cultures, and I have realised how vast the world is. I have grown so much because of travelling.
T+L India: What was your favourite part about the Hilton Goa Resort?
Pooja Hegde: It was the fact that you can get a view of the river, and you can really disconnect and be one with nature. I also loved the fact that you can go to the beach whenever you want to.
T+L India: What does your dream destination wedding look like?
Pooja Hedge: It will be something to do with nature. It will also be a very South Indian-looking affair, because I am Mangalorean. So, me in a Kanjeevaram sari would definitely be one of the things!
T+L India: What is your idea of the modern Indian bride?
Pooja Hegde: I think I am a modern Indian bride—my ideas on life may be modern, but I am a sucker for tradition. I feel that the modern Indian bride is changing, as weddings are becoming a relaxed affair.
T+L India: Is there a stereotype you would like to break, especially in terms of the Indian bride?
Pooja Hegde: High heels under lehengas! I’d contemplate wearing sneakers under my lehenga, so that I can dance the night away. And in case anybody wants to make a quick run for it, sneakers can be comfy!
T+L India: An intimate gathering or a big, fat Indian wedding: what would you pick and why?
Pooja Hegde: An intimate gathering, although I can’t help but have a big, fat Indian wedding because I have a big family. I want it to be one big party where everyone spends time together. What’s your fondest memory of a trip? I think my last Travel + Leisure India & South Asia cover [shoot], where we went to AlUla [in Saudi Arabia], was beautiful. It’s one of the most beautiful covers I’ve shot. Christmas in New York was a great experience, and going to Salzburg in Austria was another beautiful moment. Bali was lovely because of the energy. And I was shooting for a film in Italy for a month, so I have spent a lot of time in Turin. We went to a place called Barolo, which was beautiful, too.
T+L India: Your favourite romantic destinations?
Pooja Hegde: Kashmir, Paris, Bali, and Japan.
Pooja Hegde’s Five Essentials for a Destination Wedding:
- Polaroid camera
- Comfortable shoes
- Battery backup
- Research about the place