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dkw

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About dkw

  1. Like the others, I have to add my two cents -- and much praise -- for Dazzling Details. Understandably different couples have different expectations for the cost of destination weddings, and while I think the original post estimate is extreme (and I do not think that was DD anyway), I think DD is worth every penny, even if that means more pennies than most. Their professionalism alone is invaluable. I've read of WC horror stories on this forum, where brides don't hear from their WCs for 2-3 weeks... and even with the insane schedule that DD keeps, I have never waited more than 24 hours for a response (which includes the 7 month email and in-person correspondence that we had without a contract in place). So for the bride who does not have the time (or energy!) to plan every detail that goes into a wedding, but who still wants a cohesive and elegant look, DD takes care of everything so that you can relax and enjoy the day. To me, you can't really put a price on that!!
  2. A great thread...and an area that I need serious advice on! I've been debating whether to fork out another $1000 for the dresses, but I don't know if I can/should. I have my MOH and 2 BMs - we're paying for all their accommodations (including their sig others) to stay at our villa for 4 nights, which includes all their drinks and meals (all of this was a HUGE cost but one that we decided to do because we loved the villa and wanted our wedding there). Plus, I'm foregoing a "destination" bachelorette and just having my girls together for dinner a couple nights before the wedding... They pay for their plane fare, about $500-600. In our group of friends, that's the normal plane fare because we're all over the country (which is a reason we decided to do a DW rather than east coast). I wanted them to pick out the dresses so that they could control the costs, but in sending them some "inspiration" ideas, my MOH fell in love with a really expensive dress ($350 w/o alterations). The BMs loved them too and wanted to go forward, probably before they knew cost. My MOH urged the $$ dresses but no one has bought anything and the clock is ticking. I was going to let them wear their own jewelry and shoes so that they could personalize their looks, and will pay for their mani/pedi, hair and gifts...but now I'm thinking I should be buying the dresses too...especially since I don't have "back up" options. I know $350 is excessive, but I didn't pick them...sigh... Any thoughts?? Thanks ladies!
  3. Hi Ladies, After more research, I found that the Nikki Beach has closed at the Westin... has anyone else heard the same? A bummer because it had such good reviews. But, I did read that the replacement has an equally great (although expensive) champagne Sunday brunch. I've been to a wedding where the bride and groom have gone to the brunch and suggested that others meet them there for good-byes, but didn't in fact pay for everyone's brunch... an idea. We may offer to host a stop-by-whenever continental brunch since many guests will likely be leaving that day and may have check-outs etc to attend to... Davina - great choice on the Westin! It's beautiful and priced right!
  4. Hi all! Just wanted to share the quotes I received... For a 48-person bus, I had about $370... Davina, was the $500 quote for one bus only? I haven't heard quotes for vans yet, but I know that a van for the entire day is about $200 (with the driver taking you anywhere, as many trips as possible). Eggontop -- was the $150 quote for one-way (hope not!)? Will the drivers wait at the villa for everyone, or do you call them back when the reception is over? Thanks!!
  5. Hi Lori! Yea, that's what I figured, but I guess I'm hoping to make sure it's worth the extra pennies! Or, also, to know if there are any honeymoon specials that I can take advantage of... And yes I'm in Cambridge and we love it! PM me if you need advice on moving/neighborhoods or anything!
  6. Hi ladies! We're thinking of honeymooning at the St. Regis next March, but I haven't seen many reviews since it opened last year. I've read only great things on TripAdvisor, etc, but wondering if anyone (with a BDW perspective ) has any thoughts on it. Specifically, we want something really nice (it's our honeymoon after all!) and boutique spots near Costa Alegre and Cayares seems a bit too far from everything. I have a feeling I'll get antsy and I love going out to dinner and seeing sites/markets... So the St. Regis seems far enough away, but close to fun spots like Sayulita and San Sebastian. Thanks everyone! Happy planning!
  7. Hi Annette! Sierra would obviously know better, but I believe it's a non-denominational chapel and not technically a "church"... We're getting married at Estrella Mar and I can't wait!
  8. Oh - forgot to ask! Has any tried to book a day-after brunch at Nikki Beach at the Westin? What price range did they quote? I'm trying to decide if we can swing it...I just feel like I'll want to see everyone off...
  9. I completely agree with Carolyn - the Westin is really beautiful and the pools are huge and amazing. Pretty much exactly what you would want/expect for a relaxing vacation. I think it works well too if you're having more guests and don't want to lock everyone into an all-inclusive (plus, we wanted our guests to be able to explore and dine in town). Anyways, we secured a pretty good rate using Vacations 4 Less, a travel agency in California. Ask for Teresa - she specialized in Mexico. I have a friend who works for Starwood and tried to book Friends and Family rates, and Vacations 4 Less was considerably cheaper. You have to pay a deposit with them, but we just reserved fewer rooms knowing that we could book them and then reserve additional rooms later. Going right through Westin or Expedia, are there any special restrictions or cancellation fees? All in all, it seems like the Westin is really flexible and I've heard that they have really responsive wedding planners. Hope this helps!
  10. Boo - it won't open for me! But it looks like it'd be great!
  11. Ah! That's where I was planning to go! That's a real bummer...especially since Len charged a hefty price just for a trial when I was there in February! I was also planning to get a trial at Sebastians (didn't have enough time though), so that could be another option... Good luck Len ladies!
  12. Hi there - I am using Stewart and Plush too. So far he's been great, and it sounds like he can meet whatever requests you have. For example, during our (fantastic, full length) meal tasting, we noted what we did and didn't like and where possible, he had the chef re-make the item so that we could try the revised version. Plush reminded me much more of restaurant quality food, as opposed to basic catering. Let me know if you need anything else!
  13. Aye, so late in my response, but thanks to everyone for theirs!!!! I'm thinking of the Westin - we stopped by there right before we left and it was gorgeous!!!! Even though it's way out in the Marina, I think it's close enough to work. It's either that or the Marriott...the latter of which works well if guests have timeshares that they want to use. Thanks again!!!
  14. Hi Sandy! Yea, I tried to see Salamandra too but no one ever got back to me. From what I've heard, it's quite expensive and you are not allowed to go into the villa, i.e. it's event only and really you only get the kitchen, bathroom and grounds. I could be wrong, but that's what I heard. As for the others, all are great options! I'm trying to go for a more Mexican feel to my wedding, so I wasn't drawn to modern-type villas, like Guillermo, but it is beautiful and luxurious - agreat choice! Also, I don't know how big your wedding is, but I was told Serena might be too tight for a 50-60 person wedding, although that too looks amazing! I didn't see QDM, San Sebastian or DeMae. I've also considered booking both Quetzal and Serafines - have you considered that? Ceremony/cocktails in one, reception in another? I've heard that's beautiful and in the Conchas Chinas hills... I think the biggest question is always what "feel" you want, which is what dictated my process. Also, I wanted space so that guests could move around throughout the night, which is difficult to find. Have you considered Crescencia? Let me know if you have questions about particular villas and I'd be more than happy to give specific feedback!! Best of luck!!
  15. Well, we haven't decided yet. We're getting married at a villa, so we'll likely have to stay there, either in the handful of days immediately prior or after. Other than that, we'll probably stay at the resort that we recommend for the guests. At the end of the day, we'll probably recommend a bunch of places to stay, but direct the majority to a specific resort... thanks for asking!
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