By Megz, · 1,284 Views · 8 Comments
OK… so it’s been a month since we left for our wedding – I have had time to sit and digest everything, and feel I can finally write my review. I apologize if it is lengthy, but I want to make sure I get everything in….
Wedding Date: December 8, 2011
Wedding Time: 2:00 pm
Wedding Location: Tulum Palapas
Number of guests: 34 (3 children)
Wedding Package: Unforgettable for $1400
Wedding Coordinator: Maria
Leading up to the wedding I think I had the same problems everyone else did. I didn’t always hear from Maria as quickly as I would like, but thanks to this forum, I didn’t stress too badly because I knew it would be all sorted out when we got down there.
Prior to arriving down there, I had requested a welcome breakfast at the buffet on the morning after we all arrived so that everyone could meet, and we could let everyone know about what to expect that week. Maria confirmed with me that we had a welcome breakfast booked before we went, and when we checked in a had a confirmation for this waiting for me. Unfortunately in all the excitement I didn’t look at it closely. The morning of the welcome breakfast we went to the Tulum buffet, only to find out our welcome breakfast was booked at the COBA buffet. Minor inconvenience getting all our guests who were staying at Tulum over there, but it all worked out. At the welcome breakfast, we had welcome brochures for everyone, as well as startfish bottle openers and personalized luggage tags. We thought these were an inexpensive yet cute welcome gift for all our guests. Breakfast went off without a hitch, and my fiancé and I were off to meet with Maria to plan our big day right afterwards.
Our meeting with Maria was really easy. We had our passports and travel cards for all our witnesses, and Maria confirmed those and went over all the details and costs with us. Prior to coming down I didn’t pick out flowers or my cake – I did that that morning, and took only a few minutes. My bouquet and fiancé’s boutonniere were included with our package. We also got smaller bouquets for my two bridesmaids and boutonnieres for the two groomsmen. For our cake, we went with a raspberry cake, which was AMAZING! We gave Maria all our extras we had brought down, which included personalized silk fans for each guest to be placed on the chairs at the ceremony (these turned out to be a big hit because of the heat that day – it kept everyone cook, including myself), 2 bags of seashells for the tables at the dinner, a Chinese scroll we had made which was our guestbook (really cute idea – double happiness Chinese symbol on a scoll with room on the bottom for everyone to sign – visit www.orientaloutpost.com if this interests you), and a cake topper we had brought from home. Maria took all these and told us everything would be in place for the wedding and we had nothing to worry about. We then met with a rep from Arrecife for our photos, which was quick and painless, and we were on our way.
The day before the wedding was rainy, and I had a bit of a panic attack thinking the wedding day would also be rainy, as that’s what the forcast was calling for. After being calmed down by fiancé, I decided to role with it, and accept whatever weather came our way.
Wedding day came and weather was AMAZING – best day we had. My and my bridesmaid’s hair appointments began at 9am. I thought this was a too early, but it turned out it was perfectly timed. I had a manicure done as well as my hair and makeup. They did an amazing job on all of this. For my hair, I went through one of their books, even though I had brought a photo of what I wanted, and found something I liked even more. She was able to copy it exactly. I also had some orchids for my hair. My bridesmaids had their hair done as well, and it also was done really well. We left here after 12 pm, and had time for a quick bite to eat before we had to go back to the room to get ready.
The photographer showed up at 1:15 to begin taking pictures. We had Mike and he was really good. He was taking pictures for the full 45 minutes before we headed over the ceremony site.
Just before 2:00 pm, a cart came to take me, my bridesmaids, and my dad over to the site. It was a quick ride, and it was about then my nerves started kicking in. Before that it felt like an elaborate photo shoot. We arrived at the entrance to the Palapas location, and Maria was there to get us organized. I HIGHLY recommend this location, as the entrance is amazing – walking through the jungle aisle to the spot. I know my husband loved the anticipation of waiting for me to appear through the jungle….
Apparently there was a bit of a screw up with our music.. I had no idea of it, but I guess for the bridesmaids it didn’t play clearly. By the time I came through though everything was perfect. The rest of the ceremony went off without a hitch. We had the legal civil ceremony, and with it, the judge says everything in Spanish, and Maria translated it all for us. They almost forgot to have us say our vows we had written for each other (they took us through the traditional vows), but I quiet reminder to Maria, and these were done before we had our first kiss!
As we walked down the aisle, rose petals were thrown by Maria’s assistant, which was a really nice surprise. I wasn’t expecting them.
We did our champagne toast, then moved on to our photos. Mike did a bunch of group photos, then family photos, wedding party photos, and then took us off for our private photos. He came up with some awesome locations, and when we asked to go to the Hacienda for some photos, he was all for it. We didn’t get charged extra for this, which was great. If you get married on a Thursday, this is a great place to come since it is all decorated for the Mexican fiesta night. We were able to go up to the balcony in the Hacienda, and the photos came out great.
Our dinner was at 5:30 pm – yes there was some in between time, but after our photos, which took us until 4:45, we met up with everyone in the lobby bar, had a couple drinks, then got ready to go over to dinner. Our dinner was at Gran Tortuga – the Brazilian restaurant. We had one side of the place all to ourselves, and really no one else showed up for the first little while anyways. It was perfect. The tables were nicely decorated with our seashells, and some extras that they added of their own, which was really nice. There was a table set up for the cake, and our table place cards were all in the right place. The food was great – everyone really enjoyed it. If you like meat, this is perfect – if you don’t this is probably the wrong restaurant for you. Part of our package included a Mexican trio. We opted to have them play at the dinner, and it was the right choice. They began playing as soon as we came in and played for about 15 minutes. Everyone really liked it. Our other option was to have them play at the ceremony, and I’m glad we didn’t cuz I think it would have been cheesy.
After dinner we went outside a few steps to the pool where our reception was held. It was set up really nice, and they did a great job displaying our scroll guestbook. We had a resort DJ, who in all honesty, was the biggest disappointment. His music selection was not very good, and he seemed to refuse to play any slow songs – or didn’t understand what we wanted. If I was to do it again, I would have just rented the speakers, and played off an ipod or something. Our reception went from 7:30pm – 11:00pm, and despite the music not being the best, we still had a lot of fun. It was here we did our speeches, bouquet toss and garter toss. For drinks we just did the special cocktail. It wasn’t the largest selection but it served its purpose. For the price they wanted for a full bar, there was no way I was going to pay.
When we went back to our room after the reception (we were beat!!) the room was nicely decorated with towel art, plus a couple gifts (t-shirts from the resort) some chocolate covered strawberries, and a bottle of champagne. Apparently we found out later, they upgraded our champagne as an apology for the music screw up during the ceremony.
Two days later, we went and looked at our photos. Mike did such a great job, and we got 101 edited, and 509 of (which was all) unedited for $1200. We thought this was honestly a decent price. He had them all put on a personalized CD for us, in a personalized case.
I think that is about it. My mum paid for our wedding, so I am not sure exactly how much it came to but I don’t think it was too ridiculous. If you have any other questions, please ask away I would be more than happy to answer!
Megan and Maciek Juszczyk