Tying the knot under the sea

Taking the plunge...Suzzana and Christopher tie the knot underwater

Couples looking to break from wedding day tradition can take the plunge underwater on Egypt’s Red Sea Riviera - and they don’t have to be qualified divers.

Diving enthusiasts from around the Middle East and Europe are the main targets for new wedding ceremony packages with a difference introduced at the Holiday Inn Resort Safaga Palace.

But non-divers can also make a splash on their big day, as pre-diving lessons for two are on offer for those tying the knot beneath the surface of the hotel’s swimming pool.
“A lot of our guests are keen divers, attracted by the fact that we are near some of the best diving spots in the world,” said the hotel’s general manager, Edward Chaaya.
“The underwater wedding ceremony packages were introduced for them, and we’ve already had some takers. But we also expect interest from people who want to learn to dive, or just get married in a novel way.”

The underwater wedding packages include the services of a minister, who happens to be a keen diver. Non-divers are offered two pre-diving lessons at 50-per-cent discount at the hotel’s own diving centre.

White sand beaches and magnificent coral reefs make the 327-room Holiday Inn Resort Safaga Palace an ideal getaway destination for honeymooners and families, and a paradise for experienced and novice divers, windsurfers and other water sport enthusiasts.

One of three Holiday Inn resorts on Egypt’s Red Sea coast, it offers a health club with sauna, whirlpool and steambath, and a number of restaurants and casual eateries. Children have an Ice Cream Boulevard as well as a supervised Kids Fun Club. The resort is just 30 minutes from Hurghada Airport or a 50-minute flight from Cairo, while the ancient settlement of Luxor is just a two-and-a-half hour drive away.