TORONTO - As if getting engaged on New Year's Eve wasn't enough of a milestone, Krisztina Sebesi and Rex Lu upped the ante with their choice of a once-in-a-century wedding date.
"We looked through the calendar and we were like, 'Oh, my god! 12-12-12,'" Sebesi recalled.
"It's an iconic date. It's the last of our lifetime for sure. And we're like, 'Let's do it. Let's do that day.'"
The Brampton, Ont., couple are set to exchange vows during a sunset ceremony in Aruba on Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012 — or 12-12-12.
Beyond the triple-12s in their wedding date, Sebesi, 34, and Lu, 26, have made a point of incorporating the numeral into other facets of their big day.
Their thank you cards feature palm trees with 12 coconuts. The buffet will feature a dozen different courses. And the number of little starfish adorning the cake? Twelve, of course.
"It represents who we are, and we are unique," Sebesi said.
Before Vivien Chang had even met her future fiance, she had hoped that Sept. 9, 2009 would be the date she would tie the knot, seeing as nine was her favourite number. But since she and Lawrence Hu had just started dating in June of that year, the odds of a 09-09-09 wedding date weren't in her favour.
After the couple got engaged in the summer of 2011, Chang didn't have to take long to ponder potential wedding dates.
"When he proposed, I was like 'Wow! I still have a chance. I can either do 11-11-11 or 12-12-12,'" recalled the 29-year-old bride to be.
"But to me, I like number 12 a lot, and a triple-digit wedding date just happens once in a hundred years."
Chang and Hu, 35, will be heading to their native Taiwan for a big reception at the end of December. But it will be a more intimate occasion on Wednesday as they say their "I dos" at the Markham Civic Centre, north of Toronto.
Clearly, they weren't the only ones with their sights set on the 12-12-12 date, something Chang discovered when she sought to reserve a slot for their ceremony back in February.
"When I called, I thought I was one of the craziest ones. But guess what? I booked myself at 10 o'clock because 11, 12 and 1 were all booked already."
Demand was so high for the 12-12-12 date at the Toronto Civic Wedding Chambers that they've opened up an extra room at city hall to accommodate those getting married, said Virginia Ceni.
"We would maybe only have a dozen on a Wednesday," she said.
"It's only on Saturday that we have days like this where we would have around 20. But we've opened up an extra room, so it's double the amount."
Clark County in Nevada — which encompasses self-proclaimed "Wedding Capital of the World" Las Vegas — is anticipating 12-12-12 to be "an especially popular day to get married."
The county has seen spikes in marriage licences issued around other numerically significant dates, most notably July 4-7, 2007 when 4,333 marriage licences were issued. The office usually issues about 7,400 marriage licences per month.
In Canada alone, David's Bridal has some 381 brides registered with the bridal retailer who say they'll be getting hitched on 12-12-12.
"The reason that we believe that these dates are so important and so significant to brides is because the wedding, the marriage is one of the most significant events of her lifetime," said Brian Beitler, executive vice-president and chief marketing officer with David's Bridal.
"If she can accompany that with a date that's unique, it just helps to enhance that experience."
Beyond numerically significant dates, Beitler said there are certain marquee days on the calendar that tend to be coveted by couples for their nuptials.
"New Year's is a new beginning, and weddings often signify the beginning of a life together. Valentine's Day is obviously associated with love, and that's what the marriage relationship is all about," he said from Philadelphia. "There's various reasons why these dates tend to correspond to a much higher than normal marriage date."
Leah Sinclaire of Quantam Numerology is writing a book on triple numbers and their symbolism with plans to launch an app in the spring.
The Calgary-based numerologist said she can understand why dates like 12-12-12 appeal to so many.
"I think the draw would be that it's kind of like a once in a lifetime thing," Sinclaire said. "They feel like there's a specialness to it because there's a synergy and a sameness to it."
While there's no guarantee of any added luck for those getting married on 12-12-12, Sinclaire likes what she sees in the date.
"The two positive qualities for this date are double sixes, and a six is about home, heart, family, children, relationship, marriage. The top number on the pyramid is a three which is romantic love," she said.
"Those three numbers — 3, 6, and 9 — are all inspiration, and they're all about emotion, heart, caring, love, romance, spontaneity, freedom, creation, creativity. All those inspiring feelings that make you feel good,"she added. "When you get married that's what you want."