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June 08 El Dorado Bride - HELP


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#1 maggiemaylou

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    Posted 22 August 2007 - 10:43 PM

    Hi everyone.

    I am in desperate need of your help, advice, and guidance. I am hoping to plan a wedding for June 20, 2008 at El Dorado. I have done a LOT of reading here on BDW, TripAdvisor, and looked at Lomas' wedding packages. However, I am in need of guidance on how to initiate contact and just start this planning process with the resort or Lomas. How did you guys start? Did you email or call? I am so afraid of getting stuck with a bad WC. I need to book my date and rooms in the next week or so. I also need to do plane tickets and STD and invitations. I just don't know where to start. HELP! Please!
    Lauren & RyanEl Dorado RoyaleJune 20, 2008http://ticker.7910.o....mcgaXMgaW4.gif

    #2 robindepaula

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      Posted 22 August 2007 - 10:53 PM

      Hey Lauren,

      I don't have any information - just wanted to say hi! I'm sure that many of the RM brides here will be able to give you a helping hand . . .

      #3 TammyWright

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      Posted 22 August 2007 - 10:55 PM

      i just had a wedding there end of may and one of my brides is getting married there in nov.

      they have had some transition the last few months in the wedding/events department but things have gotten better,..

      what info are you looking for?

      we have a ton here:

      recent reviews: http://bestdestinati....ew-5-07-a.html

      http://bestdestinati....le-review.html

      slideshow of a wedding i helped with: http://bestdestinati....slideshow.html

      resort/wedding info: http://bestdestinati....iera-maya.html

      http://bestdestinati....ce-quotes.html

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      #4 maggiemaylou

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        Posted 22 August 2007 - 11:21 PM

        Thank you so much Tammy! I really appreciate the information. I don't know why I find this so overwhelming all of a sudden. Or why I can't find a good starting place. I just need to figure out what the "first" thing I need to do is, I guess. Thank you so much for the info!
        Lauren & RyanEl Dorado RoyaleJune 20, 2008http://ticker.7910.o....mcgaXMgaW4.gif

        #5 TammyWright

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        Posted 22 August 2007 - 11:54 PM

        Quote:
        Originally Posted by maggiemaylou
        Thank you so much Tammy! I really appreciate the information. I don't know why I find this so overwhelming all of a sudden. Or why I can't find a good starting place. I just need to figure out what the "first" thing I need to do is, I guess. Thank you so much for the info!
        the first hing to do is figure out if it is the right resort for you and if you and your guests can afford to stay there and afford to have the wedding of your dreams there.

        if that works for you, then you need to find an available wedding date.

        i would pick a time of year that works for you and your friends and family then see if the hotel has anything available during that time.

        once you get a date, decide if you want to do a room block or let everyone fend for themselves.

        then maybe do a STD (save the date) or website

        Below is a timeline to help your wedding planning go smoothly. You can adjust it to suit your needs.

        12 Months or more
        • Cut out pictures and articles that inspire you. Keep them organized in a binder. Martha Stewart has a great binder that has pockets to keep photos, cards of vendors, swatches, etc.
        • Start looking at bridal magazines and look for local bridal faire to attent. This is a great way to meet wedding vendors and see their work first hand
        • This is the hard part. Set a realistic budget.
        • Start on your guest list. Invite those that you want to spend your wedding with. Destination weddings are smaller more intimate affairs so do not feel guilty about not inviting your coworkers that you barely know. Be prepared that some of the guests you invite at the wedding may not be able to come for financial or logistical reasons.
        • If you plan on getting married out of the country, be sure to check the laws to make sure your marriage is recognized in the states. If it is a larger wedding, you may want to look into hiring a wedding coordinator who specializes in destination weddings.
        • Start researching different locations for a destination wedding. Things to consider: travel time, seasons/weather (you do not want to have your wedding during hurricane season), cost of accomodations, etc.
        • Choose a wedding date and start working on Save The Date Cards.
        • If you are planning a wedding at a resort or place you have never been before, negotiate a site visit. Some resorts even offer a free site visit or at least a reduced rate.
        Determine your budget
        • Considerations: airfare, hotel, document processing, meals, transportation, activities. Don't forget the all important wedding items such as attire, photographer, flowers, ceremony fee, etc. If you are having friends or family, you must consider if they can afford the expense of the trip.

        Location
        • Make sure the wedding day is not during the local hurricane season or wet months? How many people do you want to be there...just you and your future spouse? Friends? Family? Are you also planning on honeymooning there or somewhere else?

        8-10 months prior
        • If you can make a wedding planning trip it will be really helpful to meet with local vendors like: florist, baker, photographer, etc.
        • During the site visit would also be a great time to take your chosen photographer for a test run. Maybe take some engagement pics on the beach for your Save The Date Cards.
        • Create wedding website with travel information and FAQs for your family and friends.
        • Contact a travel agent specializing in Destination Wedding to help negotiate a lower room rate and block your rooms.
        • Decide if you wnt a legal or symbolic ceremony. If you would like to get legally married outside the US, be sure to verify the local marriage residency requirements.
        • Start looking for wedding invitations.

        Research the marriage requirements
        • It may be as simple as going to the local courthouse to sign a marriage license, or it may be as complicated as having to be a resident. There are destination wedding coordinators who will handle the entire license processing for you. If you are planning on having a legal ceremony in Mexico, it does require a blood test.

        Wedding Theme
        • You may want to decide early on what colors or theme you would like. Make sure the bouquet you dreamed of will work at your destination wedding. A lot of flowers can be shipped in if not grown locally but make sure in advance.

        Reservations
        • Book your reservations early! Many resorts and hotels are booked months in advance, especially during peak travel seasons.
        • If your group is larger, you may want to consider blocking rooms for your guests.

        6-7 Months prior
        • Start looking for your wedding dress. Some dresses can take 4-5 months to make.
        • Start looking for the groom and groomsman attire.
        • Order groom and groomsmen attire. Take into consideration that linen suits are seasonal and may only be available to purchase in the spring.
        • Shop for wedding rings and jewelry for your big day.

        3-4 Months prior
        • Finalize your wedding invitations and mail them out.
        • Start ordering items for Out Of Town Bags or wedding favors.
        • Start working on your wedding ceremony. Consider writing your own vows to make the day more personalized.

        1 Month prior
        • Release any unnecessary rooms
        • Finalize all wedding day itineraries
        • Confirm travel arrangements with the hotel/resort

        2-3 Weeks prior
        • Make sure you confirm and re-confirm EVERYTHING with your vendors before the wedding

        3-4 Days prior
        • Arrive at your destination.
        • If you plan on using a local styilist for your hair and make-up, do a test run with your veil or hairpiece.
        • If you are having a legal ceremony finalize all the local requirements to make it legitimate.
        • Meet with the hotel events coordinator or your wedding coordinator to go over the final details.
        • Have a welcome dinner in lieu of a rehearsel dinner to thank all your guests who have travelled so far to share this event with you.
        • Relax, you're
        • Contact a travel agent specializing in Destination Wedding to help negotiate a lower room rate and block your rooms. on vacation!

        Residency requirements
        • Once you arrive at your destination, how many days do you have to wait in order to get married?

        The day of
        • Be sure to eat a bit and keep hydrated.
        • Enjoy your special day. You deserve every bit of happiness that comes with it!

        Founder and Owner of BestDestinationWedding.com  /  Bride & Groom Fly FREE Promotion

         
        Looking for a travel agency that specializes in Destination Weddings-CLICK HERE?  We are an award winning travel agency and you can read our reviews here.
         
        Awards and recognition: 
        Palace Resorts Winner "Top Travel Agent", "Top Homebased Travel Agency" PRO Platinum Agency (Top Award)     |    AMResorts Master Agent & Top Agency  
        Karisma Hotels Diamond Level 5 (highest production), Top 10 Azul Weddings, Top Wedding Coordinator | Wright Travel & Karisma GIVC Benefits
        Travel Impressions Best of the Best Globe Winner    |     Apple Vacations Golden Apple Winner  
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        Vendor rules are HERE! Please read!  If you are a vendor and looking to advertise your business, please email ads@bestdestinationwedding.com.


        #6 bre

        bre
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          Posted 23 August 2007 - 08:54 AM

          We are using a travel agent from Destination Weddings Travel, so she made the initial contact for us at EDR. But you can also email them at this address weddings@karismahotels.com.

          The first thing you want to be sure of is that you can confirm that date and time you are looking for. be sure to send your $100 deposit and get confirmation of your date, time, and location at the resort if you know it. Then you can start on your save the dates.

          We are currently working with Valeria from Lomas and she is very good. Just be sure that whomever you work with you keep track of all of the details and save your emails.

          You may want to reconsider a room block. Our travel agent advised us against it since it means a lot of money up front for us and if you don't get the numbers you think, it could cost you in the end. But do whatever works best for you and your guests. I Just didn't trust my guests, so I didn't want any sort of responsibility!

          Good luck!
          Bre & Pete
          January 19, 2008
          El Dorado Royale

          #7 rodent

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            Posted 23 August 2007 - 09:16 AM

            Your wedding is the day before mine!

            What's Lomas?

            I felt so overwhelmed at first, but once I had the place booked I was totally relaxed. I think that's the hardest part.

            I think it's too early to buy plane tickets. My TA suggested waiting until oct or nov.

            You are leaving on the 18th to get married on the 20th? Are you doing the legal ceremony? Have you checked the residency requirements? You need to be there 3 days before. I think it's 3 days. It's also tricky what counts as a day. The day you arrive might not count. If you are getting married in the US first, you don't have to worry about that.

            Welcome to the forum! Don't worry we all feel overwhelmed at first. It all comes together after the first few weeks or month. We can help you get started!

            #8 jfwolfe72

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              Posted 23 August 2007 - 09:41 AM

              Hello there! I'm getting married there next April. At first I was really, really confused and frustrated about some things, but they seem to be working themselves out. And all of the reviews that I've heard from brides after the fact really were happy with the way things turned out there. I'm working with Monica at EDR (Lomas) who has been pretty organized and responsive so far. You're also in luck b/c most of the 2008 prices have been posted, so you won't get more sticker shock when you see how some things have gone up like I had. For example, a two-tiered cake price in 2007 was $270 or something like that - the 2008 price is $320. Everything has gone up in price! Let us know what specific questions you have about planning a wedding there. However, the hardest part is over - you've selected a place and the date. Next, I would hook up with a travel agent who can coordinate your and all of your guests' accomodations. One thing I've learned about EDR is that the prices on the rooms go up a lot, also. A travel agent should be able to take a very minimal deposit and get you and your guests locked in for the current rate (which is likely to only increase so the earlier your guests book, the better). Pretty much all of my guests have booked for our April wedding. Good luck, take some deep breaths, and have fun! Planning isn't too bad at all!

              #9 maggiemaylou

              maggiemaylou
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              • 95 posts

                Posted 23 August 2007 - 03:22 PM

                Thank you all so much for your help. I feel a lot better now. We are actually going to go that Monday, June 16. The other guests I am assuming will fly in on the 18th. I am hoping to do the wedding on the 20th (Friday) so that we can all hang out on Saturday and then I expect everyone to fly out on the 22nd (Sunday). That would give them a 5-day, 4-night trip. My immediate family is staying a little longer, however. So we are trying to decide what to do about our short honeymoon the week after the wedding. We can't decide if we should stay at EDR for another 4 or 5 days, and maybe spending our honeymoon with my parents (eh?), or maybe booking another resort in Cancun, so that we can enjoy a change of scenery and shopping in town (FH isn't a die hard beach person and needs things to do). But I haven't even looked at resorts in Cancun yet to even think about moving. Any suggestions?
                Lauren & RyanEl Dorado RoyaleJune 20, 2008http://ticker.7910.o....mcgaXMgaW4.gif

                #10 rodent

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                  Posted 23 August 2007 - 08:58 PM

                  Quote:
                  Originally Posted by maggiemaylou
                  (FH isn't a die hard beach person and needs things to do). But I haven't even looked at resorts in Cancun yet to even think about moving. Any suggestions?
                  This is why I think RM is great. There are so many things to do besides the beach. The jungle sounds like so much fun. There are also the ruins of Tulum to go see. What kind of stuff does he like to do?




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