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About chelsrj

  1. My husbands cousin had just turned 16, literally days before the wedding, and is really tall and looks older but they didn't even question him. He checked in with his parents and had no issue. At least with us, they didn't ask for his ID or anything. You should be fine.
  2. Just posted my full review of my 8/17/12 wedding! http://www.bestdestinationwedding.com/products/the-royal-in-playa-del-carmen-all-inclusive-spa-resort/reviews/6441 If you have any additional questions let me know. Happy planning!
  3. Hi Brides! I just returned home from my AMAZING wedding week down in Playa and couldn't be more happy. Everything - the resort, the weather, the spa, the food, everything - truly was wonderful. I will write a full review in the next couple of days but wanted to share a few teaser pics that my photog put together! Enjoy!
  4. What about tipping? Did you tip everyone including the WC? I'm trying to figure out how much cash I should bring for stuff like that - between the DJ, waiter, WC, Mexican Trio, etc. it can add up! What did you past brides do?
  5. Hi Brides! I leave one week from today for my Aug 17th wedding in Playa! Can't believe how quickly it snuck up on me! I had a quick question regarding the pressing service - did any of you use that? I'm a little nervous to let some stranger take my dress but also know it will need a good pressing after being crammed into the airplane closet. Can anyone give me a run down on how that worked? Thanks!
  6. I'll look through my extensive saved emails to get you the specific language, etc. but Mariana is my contact for my wedding on 8/17 at the Royal Playa del Carmen. Seriously, I didn't even state it as a question. All I said is that I wouldn't be paying an outside vendor fee of any kind for my photographer because my uncle will be taking my photos and he is staying 3 nights/4 days. She said no worries - just to give her his name, included with our guest list, and she would let the resort know. You better believe I will be printing that email and bringing it with me just in case - but it really didn't seem like an issue. Good luck!
  7. Oh the water flavors is a GREAT idea. I hadn't even thought of that. Thanks - great tip!
  8. Hi Lovely brides! I’m a newbie but have been reading the blogs for a few weeks now trying to get my bearings. My fiancé and I got engaged about a month ago and we are flying through this planning process and getting married August 7th… so less then 2 months out (and no, I am not pregnant)! At first my friends and family thought I was crazy but the planning process really hasn’t been that bad. Almost everything with the Royal is booked already! I know I have read posts about the Spa but I really hate to pay that outside vendor fee so I am just praying everything will work out okay if I bring pictures of exactly what I want and I bring all my own makeup. We are bringing my photographer with us and because he is a member of my family I told the resort that I wouldn’t pay the vendor fee and they said okay. So if any of you are flying in your photographer that’s a tip you could potentially use to avoid that pesky vendor fee. We are, pending weather, having everything outside… August heat, so I know it will be hot but I am hopeful the breeze will make it a bit more bearable. Any other brides out there that are trying to withstand the heat for a beach reception? Am I crazy to think this is a good idea? Any and all tips are welcomed! Just over 50 days and counting and just started this thing. Guess the next think on my list is OOT items for the guests… besides oriental trading co any other cheap fun places to pick up items at a good price?
  9. Paradise Destination Wedding

    We just returned from our amazing destination wedding in Playa and everything was so wonderful! We married on Friday, August 17th with 45 guests. We had our ceremony at the beach-side gazebo at 5:00 p.m. with the cocktail hour in the garden to follow and finally the reception on beach outside of Pelicanos. The weather was gorgeous and the locations were everything I hope they would be!   Logisitics/Planning: Like most other brides on the forum I can agree that the communication in the months leading up to the wedding were less then desirable. For the most part my WC would get back to me within a few days but there was a few times it would be weeks between emails. Dont' stress! I promise they will get back to you - they do SO many weddings that they are dealing with brides with dates that are closer then yours. They are getting every single email you send and they will get back to you on all the details, it just might take a little while! We found the use of a travel agent a life saver! My fiance and I were living in two different states during our planning phase and had family and friends coming from multiple other states so to try to coordinate flights and lodging info for everyone would have been a nightmare. Our travel agent handled everything and we simply directed our guests to reach out directly to her with contact information posted on our wedding website. Everything was seamless and everyone had transfers included in their packages. I highly reccommend the use of a travel agent if you have a decent size party or are trying to coordinate travel from multiple different states/airports.   Resort: I've been to a lot of really nice all-inclusives and I have to say this one is a top-notch resort. The staff is excellent and will bend over backwards to make your stay incredible. As the bride and groom you will check in with the Romance Concierge which is nice to not have to wait in the lobby with everyone else. Anna, our RC was amazing and called every couple of days to check in with us and make sure everything was to our liking. We took the opportunity to upgrade even further then the one we got with our package. We opted for the Presidential Suite - while pricey it was amazing! Huge living space for entertaining, two seperate balcony areas, huge bathroom and shower and best of all a roof top pool! If you have any room left in your budget I highly recommend upgrading the Presidential Suite, well worth the money!     The resort itself is clean and inviting. The lobby is open air and has a wonderful view of the pool area. The gift shop is actually reasonably priced and the spa is excellent! (I will write more about the spa in a second). The food was good for the most part - Asiana and Maria Marie were crowd favorites with us and Spice the buffet had some good choices. Not the best food or wine list I have ever had but overall very good and a lot of options. One downside is you can't order food poolside so you have to actually go into one of the restaurants for lunch or a snack. The 24 hour lounge is nice as well for those late night munchies.       Wedding: Gift Bags: Upon arrival we put our bags together and had our RC have them delivered. For $3 each the hotel will deliver them to your guests. This is easier then trying to find everyone on your own and worth the money. just provide them with a guest list and it's take care of - everyone in our group got thier bags without any issue. We didn't spend a ton of money our bags but did try to include some fun items. Everyone got koozies, playing cards, sun screen, aloe vera, Advil, Pepto, Crystal Light flavored water, personalized M&Ms and a welcome letter. We chose to forego paying to host a welcome dinner and just had everyone meet in the lobby bar for welcome drinks and casual conversation. This worked great and was an easy and FREE way to greet everyone after arrival.     WC: Our Wedding Coordinator was Zulma and she is everything everyone else had said she was. We met with her briefly the day before the wedding to go over everything. They don't do traditional rehersals so this is your opportunity to make sure everything in your package is selected and the order of events is confirmed. It is also where you will give her anything you want included in your day such as programs, decorations, centerpieces, etc. We were a very laid back couple with no additional music, other then what our harpist wanted to play so this was a 15 minute meeting, tops. We gave her our programs, lanterns, coasters and confirmed dinner choices and that was it. Zulma will greet your groom at the wedding location just before it starts then come to your suite to get you so you dont have to stand in the heat, which is great! By 5:00 the entire gazebo area was shaded so our guests were not that hot at all. Zulma stayed with us until after the cake cutting and the first dances and then slipped out when we were busy celebrating. She was wonderful and will put any bride at ease. We felt lucky to have her but I'm sure they are all great!   Getting Ready: Included in our package was the pressing of my gown and my groom's suit. I was a bit nervious (ok, really nervous) to have them take my dress because they actually have to send it off property and it takes 24 hours. I had read on here that they aren't the most timely people so I was nervous. But of course, everything was fine. The dress was crease-free and arrived on time. Zulma had it sent to the room as soon as I returned from the spa. On to the spa- it was wonderful. I had several things done while there and everytime it was great. The staff are amazing and the services help make the entire wedding week a treat. Our package included a manicure and pedicure and a couples massage. The mani and pedi weren't the best I'd ever had but they were fine and it was nice to get pampered. I had a shelack mani done before I went so I chose to get just the pedi before the wedding and got the mani later in the week before we returned home. The couples massage was nice - again not the best massage I have ever had but relaxing and the staff were great! I had both my hair and makeup done at the spa and was a little nervous about this but they did EXCELLENT! Alicia did them both and was a rockstar! I had bought all my own Bobby Brown makeup to use but just ended up letting her use her makeup - everything was clean and looked to be in good condition. I showed her 2 pictures for my hair and she did it perfectly. I wanted a beachy easy look with a fun braid thrown in to spice it up... I was so happy with the final product. My MOH and two BFF's also got thier hair done at the spa and everyone loved the finished product.       Flowers: I know some brides use an outside vendor for flowers but I didn't want to mess with any added stress of using an outside vendor and having to worry with meeting him the day of the wedding. We used the flowers at the resort and they were beautiful. We only had a MOH and a BM so we had limited flowers to purchase so that helped too. In our package we received a standard bridal bouqute for myself - after looking at the pictures I decided I'd use the standard on for my MOH and buy an upgraded one for myself. The upgraded cost over $200 and when I got it the standard one was bigger and I ended up using that one! If you use the resort flowers, the standard ones are fine and are much bigger then they look in the catelog of options. In the pictures below, the one I am holding is the standard, and the one I paid over $200 for, my MOH is carrying... kind of a rip off so stick with the standard.       Gazebo: The wedding was held at the beachside gazebo and it was lovely. We chose to remove the red carpet and I paid for a few bags of yellow rose petals. They were pricey but I liked the look of them better then the red carpet. I brought with us 4 large paper lanterns and Zulma ensured they got put up. The standard gazebo setup includes the chairs, white chair bows, and an alter flower arrangement. We had my groom's uncle perform the ceremony (we got married legally before flying down there - totally the way to go!). They will charge you an added charge of $600 to use an officient so if you have a friend or family member who likes public speaking consider asking them to do it. The gazebo was lovely - it was shaded by 5:00 and they have champaign waiting for you when you walk down the asile - what could be better?!       Cocktail Hour: Was held in the garden just beyond the gazebo and was wonderful. The food was really good here and it was a great opportunity to mix and mingle and take pictures. If you can, try to eat something during the cocktail hour - the food was much better then our wedding dinner! We didn't pay extra for a bar here so they only serve champaign. It wasn't an issue and everyone who wanted something else walked over to the pool bar to get a mixed drink. Save your money - they can walk! The Mexican trio (we got 4) was great too. Everyone loved having them there and its a fun opportunity to take pictures and have some Mexican flare. We really enjoyed them. Once the cocktail hour is over Zulma walked everyone over to the beach reception.     Reception: We held our reception on the beach just outisde of Pelicanos and it was fun. There are definitely bystanders who will look on but we really didn't notice and as the sun goes down they start to dissapear. Randoms will take pictures of you - its like they've never seen a wedding before. We had a least 20 people overlooking our cocktail hour, it was pretty funny. The beach is a great location for a laid back but intimate party. I was underwhelmed with the food - we chose the seafod stuffed chicken thinking it would be easier to cook then the beef but it wasn't a crowd favorite. Like all other brides tell you, dont opt for more cake, you will have plenty. We chose the tres leches and it was good. LOTS of fondant though but once you avoid eating that the actual cake is pretty tasty. DJ Doremix was excellent and played all but one of our must play songs. We only emailed once - my fault, not his, and everyone worked wonderfully. He made the transitions to the first dance, father/daughter and mother/son seamless and kept the group dancing all night. SPRING FOR THE LIGHT UP DANCE FLOOR!!! It really is worth the extra money and it makes for some great pics! They bring masks and shots and fireworks too - everything about them was A+, really. The staff worked thier tails off to keep the drinks flowing and get the food served. Tip them, generously.       Additional Info: There is this really great rock point that sticks out into the ocean that is just beyond the hotel beach area outisde of Pelicanos. We got some great pictures out there and just popped down as our guests were eating.   I didn't want to trash my dress but we did opt for a sunrise photo session with our amazing photographers. The sun doesnt set over the water in Playa, it rises over the water, so to get good beach/sun pics you have to get up early! We got some great shots - there is an awesome grafiti wall down the beach which provides an fun backdrop and there are plenty of really cool caves and cenotes as well. If you have time and the photog's to do it - I highly recommend doing a sun rise shoot.          Hope this helps! If you have any additional questions please let me know. The Royal is amazing at weddings and they will meet all your expectations. Best of luck and happy planning!