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TaraW

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TaraW last won the day on September 27 2016

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About TaraW

Profile Information

  • Location
    Victoria, BC

Wedding Information

  • Wedding Date
    April 15, 2016
  • Wedding Location
    Barcelo Maya - Playa Azul
  1. Wow that's terrible news about the concert. So sorry for the brides looking to get married around this time! I'm glad my wedding is over and done with!! For those brides wondering about a DJ, I say if you have a small group DON'T spend the money!! I brought down my iPod and plugged it in to their fabulous sound system and danced the night away with my guests for a cost of 8.95 ..... the amount I paid for the "wedding DJ" app! It was awesome! You can build play lists for different parts of your wedding (dinner music, first dance, reception, etc) and program it to pause and do different time delays between the songs. SOOOO glad I didn't hire a DJ for my intimate wedding and spent the money on other things my guests enjoyed way more. We also skipped having a dance floor, kicked off our shoes and danced on the sand without any regrets! If we had a much larger group we would have hired a dj and had a dance floor, but anything under 20-25 people I wouldn't bother. But different things are important to different brides so this is just my opinion!
  2. @@SamanthaElizabeth Check out YouTube There's a few video clips of the captain Morgan beach as well as the grill. MishkaDesigns did the uploads as they seem the most accurate of what I remember of that part of the resort. It doesn't afford you the same privacy at all compared to playa Azul but both my hubby and I said if we had to be relocated to a grill anywhere in the resort, Captain Morgan was the nicest as it had both a covered and open area, and the reception set ups we saw were very beautiful
  3. @@SamanthaElizabeth Were you wanting an indoor or outdoor location? And beach setting or covered area? Playa Azul is huge if you wanted a beach wedding reception as well (We did that and it was awesome) and can easily manage any size of group. Any of the grills can accommodate a large group of 90 as well. I think the Captain Morgan grill was our favourite out of all the grill areas when we were scoping out "back up" reception locations. I didn't see any indoor venues at all so I can't speak to those of you were thinking of going down that route. @@smfahey Glad you booked the location. I promise you, you will absolutely LOVE it!
  4. @@smfahey The thumbnail I attached earlier is the Playa Azul beach, where your ceremony could take place. You could also have farther up on the sand, which I have seen pics of. There is also a building right beside the location with a small kitchen, and washrooms to accommodate events in that area. I don't have a pic of that tho. I've attached a few more pics ..... a few show our large square reception table we had (in lieu breaking up a small group) It was very cool because it had color changing lights under it that really showed up at night. There are a few of the ceremony set up near the water and then one of us walking back to our group after the photos were done. That photo was taken at about 7:00pm and it gives you a bit of an idea of the beautiful beach and shows how private it really is! If you look closely you can see where we had our reception table set up, a small cocktail area (with stand up tables) and the wedding spot. Off to the left of that shot is all the palm trees, and they had white lights wrapped around them for when the sun went down. I would have liked a little more lighting for after sundown in hindsight, but it was really beautiful overall. Hope this helps a bit!
  5. @@smfahey We only had 30 people invited initially when we booked, and over half of them cancelled with all the Zika virus scares and a very poor Canadian dollar right around booking time (1.40 to every USD!) so there was only 14. Playa Azul was not too big at all! the WCs try to discourage you from booking it because it's so popular, and they like to save it for the larger groups. Its a large part of the beach and can accommodate a lot of people, but it's not like having a wedding/reception in a large hall or indoor venue where if it's not full with people it seemed too big... it's outdoors so size of the area is completely irrelevant. Both of us and our guests were blown away by the beauty, privacy and intimacy that location afforded us throughout the day and evening. It was really magical!!!! Looking back and after scoping out tons of weddings during our three weeks there (we probably saw 30 or more since there were several every single day!) it's the ONLY location I would book again for our ceremony because if it's beauty and privacy. We felt like we were in our own private beach club!
  6. @@vida Hi there, I just wanted to share with you about the beach wedding location. We were just married in April and we specifically chose the Playa Azul location at the far end the resort (closest to the Beach resort side, not the Palace) We chose the location for our ceremony and reception for all the reasons and concerns you mentioned in your post! It is VERY private, it has the most beautiful beach (no rocks or coral, etc) and it was an amazing day!! So ask your WC if it's available because I PROMISE you wont be disappointed! We were at the resort for 3 weeks and saw tons of weddings (there were 100 weddings in April of this year!!!) and definitely there are sunbathers and lookie loos everywhere ... EXCEPT at Playa Azul! So don't give up that hope for a private beach wedding ceremony just yet! Here's a pic ... I was told afterwards that there were about a have dozen people coming down the beach to see the ceremony and to see the Mayan Shamam that was present in his traditional costume blowing the conch, but the wedding coordinator / staff chased them away, and that was literally it! NO sunbathers, noise, disruptions, etc. Just us! It was a perfect day and I'm so happy we got married there!
  7. Hey there all of you 2016 brides that were married at Barceló this year!! I have a question for all of you that had a civil ceremony: We were supposed to get an official marriage certificate in the mail "within three months", but 4 months has passed and nothing has arrived yet. I know everything is a LOT slower than they say, but I'm just wondering if/when you've received yours, and what the timeframe was. Thanks!
  8. @@WattGriffiths Congrats on your upcoming wedding! We were married on April 15. I also went through 3 WC's in the year that I spent planning the wedding - it was incredibly frustrating! Itzel was my last planner and the one who was there at on my wedding day but she's since left .... Funny because she worked front desk for four years before moving to the wedding side of things, and then was only there for 7 months!!! Makes you wonder a bit what's going on in that department!! I'm not sure if she's still at Barcelo, I used Beso Brides for my hair and makeup and have no regrets at all! My guests also used their services and were very happy. I did a lot of research prior to and I found their prices very fair, and quite a bit less then many I checked out. They also don't ask for a deposit, just full payment on the day of the wedding. With all the money I was bleeding out before the wedding I found that refreshing! Do NOT use the spa - my daughter used my hair and makeup included with our wedding package and she had to fix it all afterwards. The makeup was very theatrical looking, and not flattering at all. They like their frosty eye shadow, that's for sure!!! Haha We declined the upgrade to the Palace and stayed at the Tropical, which is where us and all of our guests booked. We just asked for a nicer room at the location, and got a beautiful ocean view. We personally felt the Palace is too far away from Some of our fave places at the resort so we prefer to stay there (second time at Barcelo and we've stayed at the Tropical both times for that reason). I'm not sure what you mean about doing your cocktail hour as a reception? Do you mean you are extending your reception or just doing an extended cocktail hour instead of a reception?
  9. Hi there @@smfahey, 1. I have read nothing but positive comments on the wedding cakes overall. Ours was absolutely DELICIOUS!!!! but it was vanilla, so that doesn't help you. You can do a tasting when you arrive at the report for 10.50 USD per flavour, so that's an option for you. (that's the quote I was given last summer - it may have gone up) 2. Surf and turf was good, but it was very cold so that was a huge disappointment for us. And people don't get a choice of how they want their steak cooked, so that cook be an issue for some. A week later we got to try the beef wellington at our romantic dinner on the beach, and after eating it I really wished we had chosen that entrée instead of the surf & turf. It was amazing!! 3. Both entries came with potatoes and roasted veggies, which were really good as well. To answer your last question about pros and cons about the resort, you should definitely take some time and ready over this thread. It's worth the time investment! Many brides have shared the good, bad an ugly about the resort, and overall I think it's been fairly consistent. Barceló has their issues and we certainly had our share during our 3 week wedding/honeymoon, but overall it was a very special time for us and I have no regrets about getting married there. Hope this helps and happy planning!!
  10. @@Alemike Congrats on your upcoming wedding - looks like the countdown is really on now! You will love Beso Brides! Michael and Martina are both lovely people and did a great job for me and my guests that used their services. Highly recommended!!!! We LOVED having the guitarist. We sent him 4 songs ahead of time, with youtube clips of an instrumental guitarist playing them in the tempo we wanted them. He learned them in time and played them perfectly! We had: Before the ceremony started: Bless this Broken Road - Rascal Flatts Walking down the Aisle: We Found love - Rhianna (slowed down tempo and gorgeous that way!), Signing the certificates: Marry You - Bruno Mars After the ceremony and while we all toasted: I'm Yours - Jason Mraz Go on youtube and search for ambonick1. He was the inspiration for our own choices. We sent our WC these video clips as a guide, she forwarded them on to the guitarist and they were all perfect! So get creative with your choices - he only needs about 2-3 weeks to learn any new ones he doesn't already know. They will charge you 10.00 per room to deliver the wedding bags (YIKES!) so I got a list of room numbers my guests would be in and did it myself. The day the guests arrived I just went to the room and tipped the maids in the hallway (they are there pretty much all day cleaning rooms) to just open the door and put it on the bed for me.
  11. @@smfahey Check out my pics that I posted on here May 12 - we had both our wedding and reception at Playa Azul. It's a GORGEOUS location, and wonderfully private. You can't go wrong!
  12. Hi there, Yup, I still have some available! I'll send you a message!
  13. @@SammyMac That's terrible about your friend falling and injuring himself! You said they tried to get him to sign a release form - hopefully he didn't? Gawd, I don't even know what that would be like trying to come after the resort for damages. Long distance wedding planning was stressful enough! every morning on the way to breakfast we thought we were going to slip on the wet soapy floor while they were cleaning the hallways in front of the room. My hubby and I joked about trying to manage a lawsuit after everything else .... But seriously, hopefully your friend is doing well since he's been home? @@Bcari16 Sorry for the late reply Thank you for the wedding wishes on our wedding day! That was so sweet! I just realized you day is just around the corner as well. Hope everything goes as smooth as possible and that your day is everything you imagined it to be! I still have my internet codes/passwords .... I think they are good until the first week of June. Let me know and I will email them to you!
  14. We definitely didn't have the shuttle experience that you did! That was a total scam whatever that woman was trying to pull with you without a doubt. In the end were also charged twice for the shuttle and spent about an hour at the desk the day before we checked out trying to get the charges removed. (paid for the shuttle separately when we got there, then the shuttle charge also showed up on our room charges as owing) So my other piece of advice is check your invoices as well, ladies!! More advice for all the brides that I forgot to mention: TAXI VS SHUTTLE In the end we cancelled the return shuttle 24 hours ahead of time, had the amount credited back to our hotel account (they wont refund you, but will let you apply the credit to cover your room charges) and just hopped a cab by ourselves We were flying out of Cancun at 7:20pm and the shuttle wanted us on the bus at 2:30pm. No thank you! We enjoyed the beach for an extra hour instead, got a late check out, left at 3:45pm instead and had tons of time at the airport. And the cab was cheaper anyhow and it was just us, with no other pick ups to slow us down. We found out while we were there that a taxi to/from the airport to Barcelo is a set fee (most destinations are) - 830pesos or 70.00 if you pay in USD. With the current US/pesos exchange rate it's a lot cheaper to exchange some pesos before you leave, hop a cab and go directly to the resort and pay the driver in pesos. The shuttle was basically 50 bucks for two of us when paying in pesos, the shared shuttle was 73.00 per couple. One of our guests was stuck in a 2.5 hour shuttle ride from the airport to the resort because of all of the other drop offs that they did on the way, as not all passengers on the shuttle are going to the same resort. Cab ride was 50 min door to door. Time is money to the cab drivers, so they will get you there as fast as they can!! INTERNET - Many people get "free internet" when they book through Barceló.com, but this only covers one device at a time. You can't log on and off as easily as you may think either - it's a real pain and an obscure code that's different for everyone and a challenge to remember for most. It also boots you off fairly regularly and you have to keep signing on. My advice is to pay the 40.00 US for a second code if you and your hubby both want to be connected with your phones, ipads, or whatever. They will tell you that you need to come back after 7 days and pay for a new code but DONT I decided to see how long it would work for, and it was good the whole three weeks! I did notice there was a date on the bottom of the card that appeared to be an expiry date, that was June 15th or something like that. All of this to say they just try to get you to come back and pay for a new code - chances are you don't need to!
  15. Hi there Yooyooo, Sounds like you had very similar problems to us with regards to dealing with reception and checking in your guests. I also had many issues like that but left it out of my already lengthy review. Like me, glad to hear that your wedding was everything you had hoped it would be! Thanks for sharing your pics - beautiful! It seems like there was definitely some huge issues with your shuttle but I wanted to add some info as well, hopefully to put you a bit at ease as to why this company had your contact info. We also booked through Barceló.com for ourselves and our guests, and one week before hand we went online and paid for everything. The only amount we couldn't pay for ahead of time for any of the reservations was the shuttle amount of 73 USD return pp, which we paid at the resort when we arrived. I thought this was weird since we were able to pay thousands of dollars ahead of time, but couldn't prepay the shuttle, so I asked the gal at the front desk about it. She said it's because they don't always know which shuttle you will be transported on. Over the 3 weeks that we were there, we saw our guests come and go on a few different company shuttles even though they were all booked through Barcelo.com so clearly there are different companies that share the business/workload, etc from Barceló. With regards to the Vacciones Barceló shuttle service specifically, we also arranged for the shuttle as part of the option during our online booking. Shortly afterwards I received the corresponding emails from Vacciones Barcelo, with references made to the correct/corresponding reservation number as we received with each reservation that we made. (Their layout was exactly as you copied and pasted to your post here - asking for flight info, etc.) We provided all the flight details and we received shuttle confirmation back from the company ... some came immediately, others took a few weeks. The confirmation page had clear instruction on what we needed to do once we got to the airport, photos of the guys in their yellow shirts, and clear direction not to go with any other shuttle company or else we would not be reimbursed. They do this because there are lots of shuttle companies at the airport not working with resorts directly that do try to scam you! When we got to the airport the guy was waiting for us with a sign with our names on it, we got on the shuttle and carried on to the hotel. As I said there was certainly something sneaky happening with your experience, but it sounds like almost infighting amongst the companies that do service Barceló, or a bad employee trying to scam you ... but this is why they had your name, email etc. Hope this helps a bit!
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