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nursebrooke

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About nursebrooke

  1. I did not bring favors. I brought OOT bags and I did not even get them to all my guests. I kept carrying them around and missing people so I finally just stopped worrying about it! I have no idea if the front desk will do that. But it would be way easier. I carried my dress on the plane and it went well. My dress is very small though I was able to put it in a small carry on with my two childrens bridesmaid dresses and some shoes.
  2. 1. Our wedding was at 5:30, sun set after 7. We were rushed for pictures. Even though sun was not all the way set it was blocked by the hotel. So I would say earlier would be better, however, it will probably be very hot. While we were there it was 85 degrees everyday which is not that hot but felt warmer than that to me. I think because the sun is different there. I know July is hotter so that's a tough call!! I was not hot at all in my dress, it was windy on my wedding day. 2. I did complimentary package and added sheers to ceremony structure and sheers to chairs and shepards hooks down aisle with flowers and it was perfect. And I saved money. 3. Some food was just ok. Some was really good. I have been to all inclusives and so had my husband and we both thought it was the best we had compared to others. 4. I did not use ocean photo. I really wanted to choose my own. We had M and J Photography and they were great!! They were very helpful, I was able to email them random questions I had regarding weather, etc. They also put us in contact with someone who we ended up hiring to drive us and our group around for the day. We did an underwater TTD in a cenote with them also. I have only seen 7 preview pics, they went on vacation and I am awaiting their return to see more. But so far they are amazing!! You can check them out on their facebook page. 5. I only used the things mentioned above for ceremony, I had them move the chair sheers to the reception and I rented tablecloths. I brought my own centerpieces and some little stuff to set on the sweetheart table. I think the place is so gorgeous it needs very little. 6. I fell like it was private enough. I did not notice if people were walking by. There were people watching from the resort. They stayed clear but it was fun, they cheered with my guests and were all saying congrats and how beautiful I looked. It did not bother me at all. They try to detour people from walking by. We actually got photo bombed in one wedding pic which is hilarious!! 7. No DJ and I did not have an extra speaker and it was plenty loud. 8. One tier cake. So much went to waste I felt so bad!! Cheesecake was very good but I hear the tres leches is good too! 9. We also got the holistic massage. It was good! We got it in the middle of the day which I regret because we were at the pool, drinking and having a good time with our friends, then had to leave to get the massage and all we wanted to do was stay at the pool and continue our good time. So early morning is better then you don't feel like your missing out. The morning after our wedding we had to get up extremely early to do the cenote photos. 10. We did not go to the strip. I have two children who are 14 and 11 and they were there with us. I could have left them with my parents but I just did not feel like it and I did not want to separate from them and something happen. I imagine if I did not have them with me we probably would have left. But honestly time went so fast and we had so much fun with our group I never felt the need to leave. Even when nobody was in the bar at the resort we had our group and that was all we really needed. I hear Coco Bongo club is fun. Everything I heard was very close but do not know for sure. Thank you!! I cannot post pics I do not have an account that allows me to do that. https://www.facebook.com/brooke.hallmccracken?ref=tn_tnmn This is my facebook link.
  3. Hello girls! So I just got back on Monday!! I already want to go back. We had an amazing trip and wedding!!! I had my wedding on the beach at 5:30. I wanted to have the beach because I felt as though I had gone to Cancun I better get married on the beach which I do not regret. My wedding was supposed to be at 6 but there was another party that was larger so the coordinator asked if we wanted to do it early. The ceremony was a little different. We had legal. We wanted to do our own vows but the judge did not want us to say those before we said the legal vows, so it felt off to us. We basically really early on in the ceremony said our I do's and then went back to our own vows. Then we did this fingerprinting part that was different and then the sand ceremony. I think since it is a Mexican legal ceremony it is just a little different. Things were far from perfect during this ceremony but we are a pretty easy going couple so we just went with it and everyone who knows us thought it was perfect for us. The music was off for some reason, I chose to just forget about it because it was done already!! LOL I brought all my own centerpieces and my coordinator set them all up for me. I had to take them to her office and show her what I wanted it to look like but she was very helpful! My Zuniga rentals were great and Lily was super helpful she met me one day at the resort so I could pick colors for tablecloths (I was worried they would clash my colors and bridesmaids dresses). I did not rent extra lighting on the sky terrace and there was plenty. I did not end up tipping my coordinator. It was in my to do list but fell through the cracks, Then we went for pictures while our guests went up to the sky terrace for cocktail hour. We did not get there for any of this by the time we came up everyone was ready to sit down and eat. I never heard if the food was good. We were very rushed during pictures because the sun was getting ready to set and WARNING!!!!!! At beach palace you cannot get good sunset pictures on the beach. The hotel blocks the sun so it just goes down and there is really no good place to take pictures. So for this fact I would say do the ceremony a little earlier so you are not rushed during pictures with the sun going down just to get sunset pics. Then we sat for dinner but even at dinner we were trying to finish pics so we let everyone start before us. We had 30 guests so things move very quickly with such a small group. We had also all been together for multiple days prior so everyone had already been together and gotten to know each other already. Dinner was good. We had yucatan menu. I would say go for another menu because you get a lot of Mexican during your stay already. During dinner everyone did speeches and we had a LOT of talkers which we were enjoying because it goes to show the love people have for us. There were tears all around the entire place!! It was really special. We then did cake cutting. Cake was so yummy, we had cheesecake! I wish I had enjoyed some more of it. Then we had dancing. We only had first dance for us and then moved on to dancing for everyone. We did things less than traditional. The ipod dock setup was PERFECT! It had great sound and all the music we love since we had made the playlists. We just gave the guy running it directions on the dinner playlist, first dance and then dancing playlist and he ran it great. The people at the resort that served us during dinner were fabulous! They took great care of the two of us as well as our guests. There was never a shortage of drinks. The wedding day went SO incredibly fast. I always hear that is how it goes but for some reason I thought it being a smaller group and destination wedding it would not feel like that but no! It flew by and I feel like I am trying to remember details everyday!! I think the biggest word of advice I can give you girls is to try to relax and not worry everything. I spent the first few days of my vacation worrying about wedding details that in the end I did not even notice and did not really matter. I wish I had spent the time just enjoying my vacation. I did not feel completely relaxed until after the wedding which left us only 2 days. I had an amazing time but it would have been that much better. So for the beach palace review. It is amazing. It is gorgeous. The people there are so nice!! They remember drinks that you ordered the day before. They go out of their way to help you. We tipped very well the entire trip because they work so hard to make your vacation even better. None of the staff ever mentioned us being married there. I had heard that this would happen but it did not. But honestly it did not matter because it was great anyways!! The beach is so perfect!!! Every morning I would wake up and think this beach and water is not real!! LOL The food is very good. The steakhouse, not so much. It was my least favorite. We spend many days just going to the buffet or ordering poolside food or room service because we did not want to leave the beach or the pool until late and when I finally got to the restaurants (the Italian and the Japanese) I was very mad at myself!!! These two restaurants were SOOO good!! Get the bananas foster at the Italian. I only ended up eating once at Japanese The sushi was so good! I wish they opened for lunch that would have been better. The bad thing I can say about beach palace is the pool bars and the pool closes up very early. For poolside food the cheeseburger was very good, the chips and guac are good. For room service it is the same as the pool food with some added stuff. The pizza is very good! They start shows at night so I am not sure if this is why they shut it all down early but it is a major bummer!! We frequently continued our party down at the beach with our ipod dock and we would ask for an entire bottle of alcohol and mixers before they closed and they happily obliged...I do think my husband tipped very well though! The Michael Jackson show is good. For resort credits we barely used any of them. Myself and all my guests used all of the spa credits but not much of the others. My kids wanted to do the dolphin swim but in order to use resort credits you have to do an almost full day tour which includes stopping at some water park that looks not that great. So we opted to get our own transportation and pay out of pocket which ended up costing almost $400. But it was worth it to not waste an entire day on an excursion and for my kids to do the one thing they really wanted to do! I did not want to waste full days on excursions. I like to do my own thing so if you like excursions then using the credits will probably work out ok. Every night we ate at the restaurants I got a nice bottle of wine with my credits which was nice. I should have ordered more of it!! I don't know what else to tell you all!!! I am having post vacation depression and looking at pics and talking about it on this review makes me want to go back! It was so nice. I cannot wait to go back!! Sorry if this is jumbled or does not make sense I have tons of thoughts in my head and am frantically typing. Let me know if you would like to know anything else. I think you will all have your own experiences and a fabulous time I wish I could rewind...
  4. Hi Jenni! Not sure if you are gone already but how does that work packing your things in boxes? As far as the airline I mean. You can take boxes on the plane? I was going to take my stuff in a suitcase but a box would be better.
  5. Yes thanks for the tip!! Would have never thought of this!
  6. Also just a heads up...no matter how long they have to save...they won't!!! So be prepared that you will probably get some grief and groaning about cost. And the ones who say they are definitely in, may not be! Not to be a downer but it was a huge stressor for me and I ended up feeling very guilty at times and mad. You have to be in the frame of mind that it will all work out
  7. I did not have to pay up front. I went through a travel agent, all I did was pay deposits on all of my rooms including my own which was $100 per room, I reserved 15. When I got to 75 room nights and final payment was due they just subtracted the free nights so I did not have to pay anything else besides my initial deposit for rooms and I upgraded to a family room which was extra. This may be because I used a travel agent, I am not sure.
  8. Two things Kristie, how much was extra lighting? Also I had a hard time getting in touch with Lily so I emailed my wedding planner and she got in contact with her and I am paying my wedding coordinator for the zuniga portion of the wedding...makes me think they actually own Zuniga but whatever!
  9. Thanks Kristie!! Totally helps my fiance does not seem to understand why I am overthinking all of this! I am gonna do the cocktail hour I was wondering about extra lighting. I guess I better ask about that! Someone from JSAV is running the ipod setup? How much was that? I was doing the ipod setup partially for money saving but partially because we are kinda particular about music and very country loving people and want to have everything played we wanted! I am gonna bring some things for my centerpieces and hope for the best, I was quoted some ridicuous price as you were. Thanks!
  10. Upcoming brides what are your plans for the wedding? Times? Cocktail hour? Dinner? Dancing? Location? I am having wedding at 6 so that I can have sunset pics. Cannot decide if I want to do a cocktail hour or not. Time would be 7-8 then dinner at 8-10 then dancing after.Not sure if 8 will seem late for dinner. For those with complimentary wedding package and renting extra stuff from Zuniga what did you rent? Are any of you making decorations at home and bringing them? I planned to make my own centerpieces and bring them but not sure how that is going to work out. I am having a welcome cocktail hour the night before for the guests, can't decide if another on wedding day would be a good idea? Any suggestions? I am at unlimited events but things add up anyways, for example if I have cocktail and dinner the wedding day have to pay $60/table per hour over 3 hours which is $240/hr. Found out we have to get birth certificates translated for extra charge. Paying to have my photographers from outside but found out for them to eat at my wedding have to pay for their dinner at $50 each....and on it goes!!
  11. Has anyone heard if you can get away with bringing centerpieces from home and not paying the $300 a table?! I was not sure if I should mention it early or just bring them and hope for the best. I don't want to pay for a centerpiece I do not like and I am just making something very small.
  12. Does anyone have any suggestions for buffet dinner choices? There are so many!! I can't choose!
  13. I am 3 months out as of last week and we had stragglers finally book, it was very stressful not knowing what was going to happen or who was coming. It has held me up from starting OOT bags also. So just hang tight! As far as the private dinner I wanted to do that also if we did not have a big turnout but they said no music and no first dance. I would ask again just being that everyone seems to get different answers. Good luck!
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