Retreat saves bride’s big day

Panic over, hair fabulous, just married: Suzi and James Chilvers

Wedding day disasters take many shapes and forms, and they are often unexpected. Suzi Mach chose to have her wedding here, as do many out-of-towners who like to be photographed out on Camber Sands or at Rye Town Hall. Suzi, from Wallington in Surrey, chose Camber because it had been her childhood holiday place since she was a little girl and “having our wedding drinks, reception and canapes on the beach sounded absolutely perfect to us” she said. Husband James Chilvers had proposed a year before in his favourite holiday spot, Croyde Bay in Devon, so having the wedding in his bride’s favourite place seemed just right and the precise choice was The Gallivant at Camber. The “unexpected” hit the bride almost immediately and she takes up the tale:

“I woke up on the day of my wedding with my bridal party at 6:30am, excitedly waiting for our bridal hairdresser to arrive. At 7:30am (30 minutes late) the hairdresser finally arrived. She apologised for being late and explained she had been feeling unwell all week and still felt unwell today. Upon starting on my mother’s hair, she started to complain of feeling unwell. She said she was too unwell to continue and insisted on going home.

“As you can imagine, I was in a state of panic. The most important day of my life had just fallen apart. In a state of shock and upset, I and my bridal party started phoning around local salons in the Camber Sands/Rye area to see if anyone could help. With it being so early, no salons were yet open. Numerous distraught voice messages were left in the hope any of the salons would be able to help – but I was receiving calls back explaining they were fully booked and could not help.

“Just as I was about to give up and turn to the internet for hair tutorials, I received the most amazing news that the Rye Retreat were able to do my hair and some of my bridesmaids. They initially said they were unable to accommodate the entire bridal party as they had only a few slots left. I and my bridal party frantically jumped in the car and arrived at Rye Retreat. Overwhelmed by the ordeal, I was barely able to speak to the receptionist. Puffy eyes and a red blotchy face – not the look I was hoping for on my special day!

Crying with joy

“The staff at the Rye Retreat saw how distraught I and my bridal party were and amazingly agreed to do everyone’s hair (a total of 10 adults). We were crying and shaking with joy. The salon gave our entire bridal party five-star treatment – strawberries, champagne, hand massages, as well as producing the absolutely most beautiful hair styles. They even gave me a special ointment to put on my eyes to reduce the swelling from crying.

“I would like to thank the Rye Retreat for saving the day and would highly recommend this amazing salon, especially for a bridal party. The staff  went over and above expectations and really did produce a miracle. Without their amazing talent and kind hearts, my wedding day truly would have been a disaster.”

Rye Retreat was happy to confirm the saga, and even happier to report that the bride had written exactly the same story for TripAdvisor. After the wedding, in May, the newly weds were on honeymoon in Jamaica for two weeks before writing up what Suzi describes as “the most amazing day in my life”.

A good hair day at Camber Sands thanks to a Rye hairdressing salon
A good hair day at Camber Sands thanks to a Rye hairdressing salon


Photos: James Fear

Image Credits: The Gallivant Hotel wedding photography .