@kmk2016 thanks for your response! We have actually worked out the BDR. I guess the not giving a $500 credit is a new policy but we are still going to attend in November to check everything out. By then it will be too late to back out so I hope we love it.
I spoke with my TA again and we aren't doing a room block because we would have to pick the specific room and dates for the block and our guests wouldn't be able to book anything else. We are sending our save the dates now and will urge everyone to put down a deposit right away (for our April wedding). Not ideal but at least they can make their own decisions for the travel dates. Also, it sounds like the ocean front room we are supposed to stay in for the "free" ceremony isn't offered by the TA's tour operator (fun jet) so we are going to stay in a different room, but we are working this out too. Kinda strange because the oceanfront suite is available on the EDR website.
The WC recommend our TA, but I haven't heard that they are giving us any deals other than some extra money off each room booked because of a fun jet promotions. We will see what happens.
I'm just glad my FI still wants to do our wedding there.