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moethomas8

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About moethomas8

Profile Information

  • Location
    Los Angeles

Wedding Information

  • Wedding Date
    April 25, 2014
  • Wedding Location
    Riu Palace, Cabo San Lucas Mexico
  1. @@lunapow67, It's totally possible! But it would of course be best if you could see all of the different locations for ceremony and reception in person. My husband and I took a mini vacation to the resort (I had stayed there previously, but he had never been) prior to confirming our wedding and we made arrangements to meet with the wedding coordinator while we were there. She took us to all of the different possible on-site venues and detailed the pro's/con's and costs of each. It was very helpful and a lot of fun too!!
  2. @@eirbear0915 Hi There! We didn't have any professional pictures before the wedding because I only got the 3-hour photo/video package, which allotted just enough time for the ceremony, formal pictures and then the first part of the reception. I just had friends take photos of getting ready. I would suggest opting for the 5 hour photography package, because quite frankly, 3 hours was just not enough time to capture everything. Congrats!!
  3. @@MelissaH113. We had our ceremony at 6 at the Gazebo. This was the latest ceremony they offered, but i'm sure with daylight savings time....the 4 p.m. ceremony that you will be having is similar. Our reception I believe began at 7 at the San Jose Terrace (mexican restaurant). The guests went straight over to the reception area since it was literally right next to the ceremony while we took pictures. The pictures took a lot longer than I scheduled for, and we actually had to cut the pictures short because I didn't want the guests waiting for us any longer. We probably arrived at the reception around 8ish but the guests didn't mind because they were drinking and socializing. That being said, I think that the time gap that you have is actually perfect for pictures...it's just a matter of deciding what your guests will do during that time frame. You can arrange to have a cocktail hour on the beach (which you will have to pay for) or you can direct them to the main bar until a certain time (which is what a lot of people do according to the wedding coordinator) or you can have them go to your reception area early and just hang out there, if your reception area is private and set up already like ours was. You should discuss these ideas with the WC to determine the best option for you. But I do believe that you picked the best time...especially for picture taking purposes! Congrats!!!
  4. @@beachdremr...Sorry to say that despite the close proximity, I have never actually visited the Riu Santa Fe so I can't give an opinion about that hotel. I would say to inquire with the planner what would be the best place for your size group and budget and trust that they won't steer your wrong. Sorry I couldn't be more help! @Dportbride-We had 40 guests, we choose the middle package (which includes 20 people) and paid the extra $21 per person. I believe the price was $1800 plus $21X20! . @MelissaH113-I had my own agenda made and printed prior to my arrival. It included information about the welcome reception, resort activities, rehearsal dinner, ceremony, reception and brunch the next day. I included the agenda with my welcome bags.
  5. @@soon2BHammel719, what a great question....I think in hindsight, I would have had my hair done at the salon on sight as opposed to going to Susan Morel. I also would have gotten the 5 hour photograpy package as opposed to the 3 hour. I would not have changed the location or time of my ceremony and reception. Those were both perfection.
  6. @@stephbono, Yep the $1200 included a 3 course served meal with 2 choices for dinner, which included an appetizer, main dish and dessert. You also get the cake. They provided wine, champagne and shots...but I don't think there was a full bar..
  7. Hi Janelle, which place are you planning on having the semi-private dinner and how large is your party? I would say yes to your questions though because we had our rehearsal dinner "semi-private" at the Steak House and my husband and I gave speeches and handed out gifts to our group of 40 and it worked out just fine!! The noise level at the restaurant was not an issue, but it was also late in the evening so there was not a lot of people there.
  8. Definitely set up a meeting with the wedding coordinator there well in advance. They get super busy. But once you meet with her, she will show you all of the ceremony and reception options. Lock in your ceremony and reception choices and times with her ASAP since they book up fast! You should try and decide if you want to get married during the day or later in the evening and set a firm budget so you can eliminate some choices and narrow down whats important for you and your special day. The wedding coordinator will put you in touch with the photographer, dj and flower vendor if you choose to use their in-house services. Let me know if you have any specific questions about anything. Congratulations!!
  9. I used the resort's photographer and videographer and they were excellent! We did 3 hours and it did not feel like enough time. I would go with the 5 if your budget allows. I did not see any beach receptions while we were there. The idea of the beach reception sounds great and it's really pretty, but it does get really windy in the evening FYI. Baja Norte has gorgeous beach views and you don't have to worry about the sand.
  10. Yep!! You can make the arrangements through Jaz. Just tell her what day and which restaurant and she will let you know the times that are available. We had to have ours kinda late at 8:45 but I think that's because I waited to long to request the reservation.
  11. Janelle, we paid for the San Jose Terrace for 4 hours ($1200). That was better for us, because then the best man and maid of honor and parents got to give toasts...plus we had the first dance, mother/son and father/daughter dance, bouquet toss...and of course the dj and dancing the rest of the night. I don't think you can do that with the semi-private. Instead we used the semi-private part of our package for our rehearsal dinner, which we had at the Steak House the night before.
  12. I don't think the hotel has decorations, but you could check with Jaz. We had one long table and we had a total of 42 people including us.
  13. Lynsey, I brought Mason jars, tons of led lights for the jars and the table, as well as glass beads and crystals for inside of the jars and on the table. I also brought 6 plastic vases that I glued "bling" around and placed the bridesmaids bouquets in them. It turned out really pretty, and all of the guests took the decorations as souveniers so I didn't have to bring any back! I got almost everything from the dollar store. We also brought a custom cake topper for the cake and a wedding guest book that Jaz displayed at the reception. I'll email you the Agenda that I included in the welcome bag if I can find a picture of it! @@hyoungquist, how fun!! There were a lot of people getting married when we were there that weekend, lots of beautiful places, it will be hard to choose one i'm sure!
  14. Congrats on your upcoming wedding, you will have an amazing time!! Hmmm...I do understand your question about the private reception but I'm afraid I don't know the answer to that because our reception was at the San Jose Terrace and the food was included already. I would check with you wedding coordinator about that. Who are you working with? It may take a few days to get back to you, but she will within a few days. For the gift bags and table decorations I had a separate carry on suitcase. I didn't put anything together until I got there. I did include the welcome reception as part of the Agenda/itinerary, just ask your wedding coordinator and she will arrange it for you. The resort itself did not have decorations, I brought my own...which was kind of a pain to pack...HOWEVER, there is a walmart across the street where you can buy decorations. Hope this helps!!
  15. Hello everyone! I followed these forums religiously before I got married so I wanted to contribute since I found everything so helpful. First of all, our wedding was EPIC!! An epic fairytale to be exact, it was really perfection. We had 40 people total and everyone is STILL talking about what a wonderful time they had. We orginally choose the most expensive package, but then downgraded to the middle package and paid the per person fee. It worked out better for us that way. So here is my break down: Check-in- A breeze. We arrived the day before the majority of the guests arrived. We had a lovely ocean-front junior suite (but our friends later upgraded us to an ocean-front suite which I highly recommend). We provided welcome bags for all of our guests. They had the guests names on them and the staff set them out right behind the Reception Desk and handed them to guests as they checked in. *I had given the guests a heads up to make sure they got their bag when they checked in. This was no issue at all. Welcome Bags-Our welcome bags had a welcome note, agenda, Mad lib and I SPY sheets, lip balm, advil, toothpaste etc... Rooms-Perfection, a little loud in the hallways, but who cares? You will most likely not get upgraded. Our friends were nice enough to upgrade us to a Suite as a wedding present, which was great, but honestly, we didn't spend that much time in the room. There were a lot of mosquitos which I had never noticed before on my 3 previous trips to the resort, so bring lots of bug spray. Better yet....include them in your gift bags, your guest will love them! The rooms could be updated, but we didn't mind, they were very clean. Wedding Coordinator-We worked with Jazriti and she was a dream! She takes awhile to get back to you via email...but don't worry, as your wedding gets closer she will be on point. Trust me! We met with her the Thursday before the wedding. I showed her pictures of how I wanted the Ceremony space and the Reception space decorated. I also gave her all of my decorations and she set them up EXACTLY how I wanted them. I hope to be able to post pictures of both. She also arranged for our welcome reception and rehearsal dinner. We had to do a few follow up phone calls and she was very accomodating. Photographer/Vidographer-We used the resort's photographer/videographer. We also met with them during our meeting with Jazriti. I have not recieved the video yet, but the Wedding photographs are STUNNING!! AND you get them before you leave, so you can do all of your editing at home on your own computer. They were great. Welcome Reception-Most of our guests came in Thursday evening, so we had a welcome reception in the main bar. They sectioned off an area and we just got drinks from the bar. Rehearsal Dinner-We had the rehearsal dinner at the Steak House. It was lovely. We had two long tables and they served Surf and Turf. We were able to give speeches and hand out gifts. We then walked all the guests over to the ceremoney area so they knew where to go for the Wedding (this was great, no one was late)! Hair-I used Susan Morel and it was just ok. My hair was in a half up do with curls, but the curls totally fell by the time the ceremony took place. It stil looked great though. My makeup was ok. Ceremony- We had our ceremony at the San Jose Gazebo and it was the most beautiful location I could have imagined. I will say that it is a very loooong walk to get to the groom, but I got to really take it all in as I walked down. We were going to do a beach ceremony but it's difficult to walk in the sand and I wanted to wear heels. Reveren Marco Archiega officiated our ceremony and he was GREAT! He was funny and heartfelt! My mom read a passage and my husband and I also recited our own vows. You willl be able to choose the ceremony that you want and he will work with you to make sure that the ceremony is exactly the mood and the tone that you want. Our guests cried and laughed througout the whole thing. It was a LOT of fun. Flowers-We used the hotel Vendor, Alina, and the flowers were just what I wanted. I used the flowers that came with the package as well as 4 bouquets for my bridesmaids which I believe were $60 each. There were also two large arrangements on the gazebo and petals on the ground (which they will later use on the tables for your reception). Alina is very pleasant to work with and will get back to you via email right away. I changed my mind about a few things and she was very gracioius about it. Reception-We had the reception at the San Jose Mexican Restaurant Terrace. We rented the whole space out for $1200 for four hours. It was so beautiful!! And convenient! The guests went to the reception area while we took pictures. We had one long table and that worked out very well for us (we sat in the middle). We did toasts and speeches and the bouquet/garter toss, father/daughter dance, mother son/dance. The space fit our group very well! DJ-We used the Resort's DJ. I gave him a playlist and he mostly stuck to those songs but he added songs of his own too and kept all of our guests dancing ALL NIGHT. He was great! I forgot to mention that I also brought my IPOD, they have a music guy that will use your ipod to play the pre-ceremony music, precessional and recessional music. He didn't miss beat! Post wedding Brunch-we had a brunch the next day at the Main Buffett, we all gathered outside at the English Garden at 10:30, we all looked like a hot mess (most of us partied in a suite for the afterparty until 3 a.m.) but it's great way to bond afterwards and some of our guests were leaving that day. Post wedding dinner-We made reservations at "The Office" for our post wedding dinner that Sunday evening. What a fun place!! You eat right on the water, incredible views and great food and service. The resort itself is beautiful. Our guests all did different things but we all managed to spend a great amount of time together. It was just what I imagined...a vacation with our closest family and friends with no formalities. Let me know if anyone has any questions!
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