By ladydi1844, · 1,235 Views · 11 Comments
March 9, 2012
Miami Coordinator: Geraldine (membership)
On-Site Wedding Coordinator: Cristina Valdezivio
Wedding Date: Friday March 9, 2012
Wedding Week: Sunday 3/4/12-3/11/12@ Moon Palace
Room Block: Sunrise Side Building: Luna
Welcome Dinner: Arrecifies on Wednesday March 7, 2012
Ceremony: 4:00 p.m. – Tucan Gazebol
Cocktail Party 5:00pm-6:00pm Tucan Garden
Reception: 6:00pm-9:00pm Tucan Terrace
Photographer& Videographer : SmileMarket
Music : ipod hook up PSAV
Complimentary Wedding Package:
I did the complimentary package after reading on this site all the options you could just add on and there was no switching things around in the packages but now they have all new packages and they have these crazy set up fees to set up your decorations so it might be worth it to look into. I also saw that they were coming out with a simple Colin Cowel package for the reception that would be pretty reasonable so ask about that because in all reality by the time you get all the suitcases down there and pay the fees to set it up and go through all this aggravation you are probably better off having them decorate for you.
Here are the things we added to our package:
Ceremony flower arrangements : $180 for 2 and than they were moved to the cake table
iPod set-up, speaker system, $387 this was for the cocktail hour in the Garden and the Reception at Tucan terrace. It would have been $288 just for the reception.
Bride’s Hair and make-up: $170 (Palace Resort credits)
Maid of Honor boquet: $77
Boutonniere: $44 for 2 (Dad & Best man)
Cocktail party: $600 for 30 people
Extra hour per table : $180 for 3 tables
Add tier to cake: $85
Zuniga decorations: $1,159
Photo package Smile Market: $2,200 & $69.00 to ship.
Venue: Moon Palace
I have to say I travel a lot and Moon palace was a beautiful resort but I think I am still reeling from the task of preparing everything for so many and I don’t know if I am making an impartial review lol. Early on in making my arrangements I discovered this website so I was fortunate to get to use Lynn’s membership which brought my price down to $406 per couple per night and gave us a lot of extras including free transfers, 2 free tours, mani & pedi for everyone in your room and a free massage for every adult. It worked out well for me because there was an Enrique Iglesias concert that we each got 2 free tix per room for because of the membership also. Dealing with the membership you deal with Geraldine in the Miami office. She would always return my emails within a few days but there was some confusion with getting credits and transfers but the truth is my family changed their minds a million times so I can’t really blame anyone else when I had all these changes to make lol. Geraldine gave me Cristina about 4 months out and she was my onsite WC. She told me that she would hold my locations but that I couldn’t ask my questions until I was 90 days and that she might not be my WC. Well sure enough 90 days out exactly I got an email from Cristina and she was my WC and she answered all my questions. I am so thankful to her and all that she did to make my wedding as beautiful as it was. She was a Godsend. Really try not to bother them with too much nonsense because they are busy with weddings. I just sent a few emails with a bunch of questions and than I would get a reply within a few days with the answers and I kept that thread going so everything was in one email. But honestly you can make pretty much every decision when you get there and they get it done except for locations because they get taken up. When I met with her on Tuesday she went over every single item that could come up for a wedding and anything I had already talked about she had. She went through my suitcases of stuff (scary because I brought her 4 suitcases) and got a general idea of what I wanted. She had great ideas and I pretty much listened to her. I told her I wanted the photo station set up and she did it tooo cute and it was a big hit. I had ordered the candy table from Zuniga but I knew there choices were limited and I knew I wanted more candy so I brought a lot of candy with me and it came out totally gorgeous. I could not have been happier with Zuniga or my WC, Cristina.
The resort itself is big and beautiful and there is so much to do but I was so crazy about everything with my wedding I don’t think I enjoyed it so I would have changed my wedding to happen within the first few days of getting there so you have more time to enjoy it or stay a few more days after. The resort credits are great but you have to work to spend them and every trip to the desks located in the lobby where you book stuff is very time consuming and frustrating and slloowww. Especially for a New Yorker lol. The $350 credits good for the salon and spa are easy to use especially if you are going to use them for your hair and makeup. I had Alberto do my hair and makeup and I was absolutely thrilled with him. He is in the Sunrise section and I wanted to give him my first born lol. I had one pic and he made it even better. Loved the make up too, unfortunately I broke out and I was so devastated about it but the stress was too much lol and he did his best to cover it all up. On the other hand my daughter had Sofia and she absolutely sucked- I made a scene about it in the middle of the salon after telling her so many times what we didn’t like but no one really cared lol. My mom had a great stylist also I think it was Rita- she looked absolutely beautiful. My sister got a great hairstyle and pretty much we were very happy with Sunrise salon! They do not know how to do acrylic wraps FYI but they said they will be taking classes soon.
The property is huge and I liked it but some people complained about how big it was and how much walking you do. Stay close to a lobby if you can because you go there a lot for food and for the desk and transfers and tours and shows so keep that in mind. In sunrise we were in Luna and I was very happy with that but Estrella looked even better lol. The rooms are small. The double beds are tiny and any people with more than 2 looked like they were very uncomfortable. No room in the drawers for 2 let alone more than that. I was fine in our kingsize for 2 of us but I had a few 3’s and families and I wish I would have upgraded them.
5-8 nights gives you 1500 resort credits with 300 of those 1500 available for the spa and salon. They made changes to what is available so I am going to tell you what is available for when I was there. I met with a membership guy and it was worth it for my large group just to see exactly what they have and he tells you EVERYTHING about the credits but then at the end he tries to get you to go on a tour of the hotel to sign u up with their membership. I just politely said no but some in my group went for the extra 100 salon/spa credits they give u just for going on the hour tour. It is up to you but I will tell u what he told me.
The only tours available now are: Chichen Itza, Tulum Express, Isla Mujeres, Wet n Wild entrance (59 credits) or Premium Dolphin swim (129 credits must be 6 years old) and there was no mention of it on the paper but he told me about the jungle tour/aqua twister tour. There is also a chef’s dinnerfor 99 credits or a romantic lobster dinner 350 per couple. You can also get a beauty cream kit for $320 credits plus $30 tax cash or a tequila set for each room for 100 credits plus 11 tax cash. U can use 100 credits in the silver store but everything in there is ridiculously priced and you can use $400 credits in the real jewelry store where the jewely is thousands lol. A good deal was 100 credits toward Maui Jim sunglasses which are the same price as here so that was good. They did not have Coba or Xel-ha when I was there anymore. You can also use your credits for Kodak pictures on a different day than your wedding but they had cute packages I just didn’t have time to do it. You can use the credits for room upgrades or upgraded wine selection also.
Here is what I did with a group of 30:
Sunday 19 of us arrived- hung out and explored the massive resort. The buffets in the sunrise section are fine. The gondola is italin at night and it always has something for everyone and so does the main buffet in sunrise. They say it is Mexican but it has grilled steak, chicken and all kinds of pasta everyday. The buffet in Nizuc was not as good as in sunrise in my opinion.
Monday the weather was terrible and we spent the day trying to figure out what to do with the credits lol. Some of my family did the chichen itza tour as it is only mon wed and Friday but it was too long a tour for me to go to.
Tuesday we went to the wedding coordinator and got everything settled and went to Monahana for dinner- excellent food-best food I had all week. They say it is asian but the teriyaki chicken was great and I am not a Chinese food person at all and I loved it!
Wednesday the rest of my party arrived and unfortunately I wasted our first beautiful day waiting in the lobby most of the day. We had our welcome dinner on this day and 2 people went on the Tulum tour. The welcome dinner was at Arrecifies which I was not crazy about but a few people liked it and a few didn’t. the chicken is weird and some cuts of steak were weird but the porkchops were great and a few cuts of steak were delicious. The atmosphere is great though and they have a little ice cream stand there that was delicious and over all it was nice to go over to the Nizuc section and they have a sweet shop with coffe and espresso in the lobby and entertainment in the lobby so it was nice.
Thursday: I had scheduled a wet n wild and dolphin swim tour for my whole party. This was confusing as I made arrangements for 8 rooms – 30 people and who wanted the dolphin and who wanted to just go to the park but in the end it was all worth it. This tour was fun and used credits. the wet n wild tour which is $59 and includes transportation we all got to go on the same bus and all you can eat at the park or the Dolphin thing which was $129 and an extra $20 for transportation and entrance to the park but I got it done and it was a nice but long day. The park is small but the lazy river is relaxing and we stayed until 2:50 but could have left by 1:00 and been happy since you start the day at 8:30 lol. But they have later Dolphin swims but I had a large group and they got us all in it. I suggest one person go in to buy the video and pics you will get a better deal lol. We all went to Traitorria that night for dinner –the food was good but the wait was very long and the bugs were killer because it is at the golf course. We wound up walking out before dessert. That was the only bug problem we had.
Friday: wedding will come back to that
Saturday: This was another tour that I booked for everyone and althought it was confusing and I was putting credits all over because some of us had tons left over and some had used theirs all up it was everyone’s favorite day. The aquatwister/jungletour was everyone’s favorite tour. It was $129 credits and I booked it for all of us together. It doesn’t include transportation though so I rented a bus for $180 for 20 people which they billed to my room and we all went together. This tour was the most fun – after taking the bus to the marina you get a guide that takes you on this aquatwister boat it holds about 22 people. The driver is entertaining and he gets you soaking wet-it’s like a ride. That lasts about a half hour and you come back and go on a 2 person jet ski in a line for a half hour ride to a reef where they tie all the boats together and than you snorkel for a half hour and drive your jetski back to the marina where they have shops and stuff. Very entertaining and we all loved this.
The whole tour was about 4 hours and than we went back to the hotel and went to the Nizuc section for the grill and hang out by the pool. We had the Enrique Iglesias concert that night which turned out to be great and a lot of fun and we ate at Los Tacos which was really yummy fajitas but closes at 6.
Sunday: we all met at the buffet for breakfast and had to get on our shuttles to the airport by 10AM. Make sure you get your transfers a few days after getting there. And beware they make you leave 4 hours before it is time for your flight. Ugggh.
I made appointments for everyone in my party who wanted an updo or makeup with Karla in advance of getting there. I confirmed all 15 appointments when I got to Moon Palace and we straightened out any issues there were and she helped me spread out the resort credits throughout to get the most out of our credits. Put a niece on my room and stuff like that. Very helpful and considerate. The salon was crowded with my family lol
and we were having a great time until my daughter’s make up started coming out terrible and we weren’t crazy about her hair either (sofia did it) and I turned bridezilla which was a little over the top even for me but they didn’t credit me so I guess I wasn’t flipping out enough. Anyway I did my hair at 11AM and make up right after at 12:30 I was done with everything about 1:45 and it was all stunning. I was so happy with Alberto I wished I had more money to give him lol. After that I went to get some lunch and went to my room where my photographer showed up about 2:30 to take pics of my dress on the hanger –he left right away and went to my husband to take pics while I got laced into my dress. He came back to me at 3 and took beautiful pics of me and my girls and than Cristina came with a golf cart and we went to the horse and carriage where she let me go with my MOH and 3 flower girls. It was breathtaking and awesome and made my husband cry. Do it!!!
My ceremony was at Tucan Gazebo at 4PM and the weather was perfect!!!! The scenery is breathtaking. I gave them parasols which I don’t remember seeing set up lol and starfish on raffia that they put on the end chairs as well as chair sashes –it was beautiful and I got 2 table arrangements for $180 that they also put on the cake table and they were perfect and exactly what I wanted.
I heard all my music and nothing really played for too long. They played my groom song while I was coming in the carriage which was fine. (All my Life ) after we pulled up my dada came and met us and we all lined up. They started somewhere over the rainbow and my MOH and flower girls walked down the aisle. When they got to the groom I heard my song start (crazy love-Michael buble) and me and my dad walked down the aisle. The music was fine the ceremony was about 25 minutes. I did the sand ceremony really just to have another song (1000 years from twilight- ilove that song lol).
After the ceremony we took our guests to take pics for a half hour
and than my guests went to the Tucan garden for cocktail which I got the superior hordoerves and added pizza. I don’t think it was a big hit but whatever. I didn’t really do to much for the cocktail hour other than music with PSAV and set up a cocktail playlist. I got to the cocktail hour after the pics with about 20 minutes to go and I didn’t rally eat so I can’t say much about that.
At 6:00 we moved over to the reception at the Tucan terrace which was set up ridiculously gorgeous and I could not have planned it better if I had the time to do it all myself.
My colors were pink and fuschia and I used Zuniga for the decorations they were a pleasure to work with and Katie answers immediately and really helps you with your budget and ideas. Loved them. I got 2 bamboo structure with colored hanging paper lamps (fuschia & pink) for $180 each and they were perfect- u really don’t need it for the lighting it is all lit up at night but they look GORGEOUS. I also got the candle steps. 4 of them made 2 set ups- $220 for all 4. I knew I wanted this from the very beginning of my planning and I loved them so much.
Wish I would have taken a pic in front of them lol but I forgot. I also got the candy table.
candy tree with candies for 10 people (includes different glass containers, candy tree and lollipop stand and candles (chocolates, marshmallows, lollipops, chocolate mints, gummies this was $150 – I knew I wanted my own candy but thought this would be a good start and it was adorable. I brought tons of pink candy with me from oriental trading and it was so cute. I even got pink M&M with our picture on them.
I loved my decorations from Zuniga. To this I added a kids table that was adorable. I used the silver flower girl pails as the centerpieces and I made smaller galvanized pails from oriental trading as place settings for each kid filled with candy and stickers and the maracas. It looked too cute. I also made them a scavenger photo hunt of all pics I wanted them to take just to keep them busy.
I made a photobooth station that kept everyone busy and having a great time. I brough sombreros and boas and necklaces and signs from party city and everyone dressed up and took pics. It was so cute and the camera works GREAT. It is the fuji instax. I made a scrapbook and set it up so people just put their pic in and wrote me a note. The photographer had fun with this too.
I also got chair sashes and pink satin napkins and runners from wedding linen direct. And they used my starfish attached to the raffia on every other chair so cute.
I upgraded my cake for $85 just one extra tier and got chocolate on the bottom and vanilla on the top. I also brought cake boxes and even though the cake wasn’t that good I loved it like crazy and am glad I upgraded it.
I brought tons of shells and starfish and they decorated and put them around and it came out gorgeous.
The buffet was the Italian buffet and I added chicken fingers and fries. The food was fine I liked the beef lasagna but I didn’t eat too much.
The music was great and PSAV charged me $387 to do the cocktail and reception and it was perfect. The technician played my playlist that I worked on so hard and everyone danced all night. I couldn’t have been happier with my wedding. ;)
Smile market was a dream to work with and i am so happy that after much soul searching i went with them. They gave me EVERYTHING for $2,200 and my pictures are gorgeous. they live streamed my ceremony and my photographer and videographer were awesome, friendly, fun and I loved them from the very first email with Lupit who is so professional and helps you find the perfect package. they were with me every step of the night and even stayed late. i had the most wonderful experience with them!!!!!