Sunday, December 13, 2009

A dream green wedding (More say ‘I do’ to park weddings)

05:55 AM Dec 07, 2009
TODAY, News Monday December 7, 2009, Page 8

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SINGAPORE - Saving the environment can now go hand in hand with saving costs for your dream wedding.

Couples can avail of a 20-per-cent discount at the National Park Board's (NParks) green wedding venues at the HortPark in Alexandra Road (picture), if they can prove that they will take at least eight environmentally-friendly measures for their big day.

The measures may include using a hybrid car for the big day, printing invitations on recycled paper and using bio-degradable cutlery.

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"Weddings generally generate quite a lot of waste, so we're trying to use this occasion to remind people that environmental-consciousness is actually a very important part of our lives," said Ms Yvonne Cheng, Manager for Marketing and Promotions of NParks.

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Charges for the venues in HortPark are between $85 and $190 per hour, depending on their location. A team there will assess whether couples who want to apply for the discount under the "Green Wedding Special" meet the criteria.

NParks said it is still considering whether to extend the offer to its six other parks.
Yesterday, it also launched a new wedding venue at HortPark called the "Garden of Seasons".

Newlyweds Kevin Tan and Claire Chua said they were inspired to include several green elements in their wedding there.
"Our wedding favours are tea infusions and we include rose hip flowers in it, so it's very much in line with the garden theme and it's something people can use over and over again."

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NParks said the design of the new venue will be changed every three months to reflect the four seasons.

Couples can learn more about the green initiatives at the Garden Wedding Fair at HortPark this Saturday.The first wedding fair organised by NParks will also feature more than ten lush gardens and parks where couples can tie the knot.

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This year, there has been an increase in the number of couples who held their weddings in parks, according to NParks.

From January to November, there were more than 150 such weddings plus about 30 bookings this month, compared to more than 130 weddings last year.

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Eco-friendly practices for weddings
  • 1. Wedding invitation: Go paperless, use email invitations or use recycled paper/environmentally-friendly paper.
  • 2. Wedding collaterals (e.g placecards, menu) : Go paperless, email your guests or print limited copies using recycled paper/environmentally- friendly paper to be placed at the guests registration table.
  • 3. Wedding attire: Rent gowns and suits made of ecologically-friendly materials, or use attire that is not new.
  • 4. Wedding venue: Use a non air-conditioned venue at HortPark.
  • 5. Transportation: Rent a bus to ferry guests, encourage them to carpool and use a hybrid car for the bridal vehicle.
  • 6. Wedding decoration: Use potted plants instead of cut flowers to decorate the venue. A small potted plant can also be turned into a bridal bouquet.
  • 7. Catering setup: Use bio-degradable cutlery or other environmentally friendly alternatives like banana leaf or cornware.
  • 8. Wedding favours: Give out favours made of eco-friendly materials or recycled materials, or something all guests can use.
Source: NParks

Photo is From TODAY, Monday December 7, 2009

More say ‘I do’ to park weddings


Photo from MYPAPER
Mr Kevin Tan and Ms Claire Chua are the first couple to walk down the aisle at HortPark.


A COUPLE who tied the k n o t y e s t e r d a y eschewed artificial lights in a hotel ballroom for a natural sunset in a park.

They also opted for a seating plan marked on a chalkboard instead of paper, a guestbook made of recycled paper and rented wedding attire.

They decided to have their big day in a park as it was “natural and beautiful, the way we always wanted our wedding to be’’, said the groom, business manager Kevin Tan, 30.

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It also let them do their part for the environment through “green” practices, he added.
We don’t need many cut flowers as we are already in a park, which has a garden ambience,’’ he said. “It looked lovely and it’s good for the environment.’’

Mr Tan and his wife, Ms Claire Chua, 24, became the first couple to walk down the aisle in HortPark’s new garden, Garden of Seasons.

Yesterday, the garden joined a list of more than 10 parks, including East Coast Park and Fort Canning Park, that can be used as wedding venues.

It will have its design changed every three months to reflect the four seasons. It now has plants and trees of white, silver and lilac hues, to reflect a winter theme.

Photo is obtained from,1251122628,1/stock-photo-two-green-emeralds-on-a-white-background-35808175.jpg

And, from next Saturday, couples who choose to wed in Hort-Park and adopt at least eight eco-friendly practices, such as using a non-air-conditioned venue or encouraging guests to carpool, can qualify for a new “green wedding special’’.

Under the special launched yesterday by the National Parks Board (NParks), they will get a 20 per cent discount off the $15 to $260 hourly rental fees of venues within HortPark.

NParks is letting more parks be used as wedding venues to “endear parks to the public and help create beautiful memories in green spaces’’, said its director of parks, Mr Kong Yit San.

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Park weddings are becoming more popular as more people feel that parks are sophisticated and romantic, said NParks.
This year, 150 weddings were held in parks here, up from 130 last year. NParks already has 90 bookings for next year.

With its latest move, it also hopes to inspire more couples to reduce the large amounts of waste that weddings usually generate.

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A typical wedding with 200 guests would generate about six garbage bags of rubbish, mainly napkins and paper cups, said the director of wedding planning service Spellbound Weddings, Ms Anna Lim.

She began to offer green weddings about a month ago, after receiving more enquries about it in the past year.
“People are getting more environmentally conscious. About four in 10 couples consider green wedding now, as opposed to the ad hoc one or two every year in the past,” she said.

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But green weddings cost about 20 per cent more than conventional ones, as many suppliers, such as caterers, do not regularly provide “green” options and have to make special arrangements, she said.
“The green wedding special is a good way to counter the cost issue and get more couples to go green,’’ she said.

On Saturday, NParks and Wedding & Travel Magazine will be organising a fair at Hort-Park to provide couples with tips on green weddings.

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A highlight is the launch of bridal studio WhiteLink’s latest bridal collection made of recycled materials, such as wedding car floral decorations and fabric covers of used wedding albums.

Its designer, Ms Joanne Heng, wanted to change the misconception that things made of recycled materials are ugly and promote the idea of going green.

Environmentally-friendly alternatives, such as banana leaves for catering set-ups and potted plants, which are reusable, unlike cut flowers, will be showcased at the fair too.

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