By Lindsay30, · 913 Views · 1 Comment
Our official Wedding Review:
My husband and I got married at the Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso on July 21, 2014. 3 months ago! I have to say it was the most unforgettable time. We are so happy that we decided to have a destination wedding, especially at the Iberostar Grand.
Airport Transfer Transportation
We had a good experience with our transportation from the airport to the hotel. Really have no reason to complain. We booked our travel with a local travel agent and the tour operator was Apple Vacations so they are usually very good to work with and we had no problem getting from the airport to the hotel. We had 11 pieces of luggage between my husband and I and my sister and her husband, so it was pretty funny watching the driver try to fit our entire luggage in the van... We did leave from there for our honeymoon in Belize so aside from wedding decorations and wedding goodies; we had to pack a lot of clothes! Good excuse J
We loved the Iberostar Grand Hotel. It was truly amazing. We actually said it was TOO nice for us, but it complemented us well and all of our 38 guests enjoyed the luxury of what the hotel had to offer. We viewed 11 other hotels in person before choosing so we made a very conscious decision when deciding which hotel we wanted to get married at. The price had to be right too and we believe we got our money’s worth x2!
The grounds of the hotel are simply amazing. The restaurants were incredible. No one ever complained about their food and any of the El Carte restaurants or the Buffet. The pools and pool bar were very nice and big. Only one complaint was the pool tiles in the main pool were chipping in and around the pool and some of our guests chipped their foot now and then. Aside from that, there was not an issue with the stay at the hotel. We were concerned that the Grand Hotel might not have enough nightlife but it turned out they had a Karaoke Bar every night and the lobby bar was open 24/7! Our guests loved that.
Viridiana was great. She was incredibly helpful with the process. We didn’t begin talking to her via email until 3 months prior to the wedding so from November to April, I was in contact with a Wedding Sales Coordinator which she was helpful in booking our events that we wanted to secure ahead of time, helping with photographer decisions and entertainment through the trip. But when we began talking to Viri, she had EVERYTHING down. I thought for sure there would be a piece missing with all of the 100’s of emails that went back and forth for months but she not only had it all down word for word in what we requested but had it all separated into days/event and priced out. When we arrived at the hotel 4 days prior to the big day, we met with her the first day and confirmed everything. We followed up the following day and gave her all of the items we wanted to bring down ourselves to include in the wedding celebrations. She made a few notes and everything ended up exactly where it needed to go. It was so nice and stress free! She was there for all of our events and stayed until the end to make sure everything went well. The only complaint here would be that we weren’t advised of the air conditioning situation or lack thereof in the restaurant we had plans to have our reception in. The 2 reasons why we chose an indoor venue for the reception was because our parents would have complained about the heat outside and we didn’t want a buffet style dinner so it had to be inside. I will continue the Air issue a little further down…
We had a welcome dinner for all of our guests the night before the wedding. It was on the beach with a Caribbean buffet. It included chairs/lights/tables, all the necessities for the event. We added a Cigar Roller and Fire Dancing Show through Big Bang Productions which was the hit of the night. They were awesome and everyone was so surprised. I would highly recommend them. Big Bang Productions (Dulce Gomez) was our DJ for our wedding reception as well and she was awesome. We use the hotel’s photographer for the Welcome Dinner because we had 60 included photos in our Dream Package and we are very happy that we decided to go with an outside vendor for the wedding day because while the photographer with the hotel was very nice, the photos looked like anyone could have taken them. Nothing special but it was included so we have nothing to complain about! At least we have photos from the night which we are happy for.
The wedding ceremony location was amazing. We never wanted it on the beach and this hotel did lack a gazebo overlooking the water but we still knew the hotel was the right choice so we decided to have the ceremony on the beach and I am so happy we did. I will always remember the moment I stood at the hotel terrace overlooking the beach, seeing our guests and most importantly my soon to be husband. It was such an amazing moment, I can’t even explain the feeling. The chairs, walkway, rose petals truly didn’t matter the minute I saw him but it was everything we requested so we were happy J
We had a mariachi band that came with the Dream Package and from what we heard, it was amazing along with the Appetizers and Cocktails. Everyone seemed happy.
We had our 4 hour reception in the La Brisa restaurant over-looking the water. It was a great space, perfect for our group. The dinner was amazing. We were able to choose soups/salads, appetizer, entrée and dessert and we had our wedding cake. Everyone raved about the food which was great. The set up was just as we had hoped. The reception was from 7-11pm and we probably danced non-stop from 8:30pm-11pm. Again about the A/C. It didn’t work very well that night, so it was very hot in there restaurant and with all the dancing that was going on, everyone looked pretty gross by the end of the night but I guess it’s something we will always remember. At least I seemed to managed to not look too gross or sweaty J
We used Big Bang Productions and had Dulce Gomez DJ the party. She was amazing. Everyone loved the music choices and no one ever left the dance floor except for drinks and maybe some fresh air with the heat in the restaurant. She played 99% of our requested songs and we couldn’t have been happier. I would highly recommend her and the company.
Our photographer was Claudia Rodriguez and I cannot recommend her enough. Not only was she very professional, she was easy to talk to and very communicative in the months leading up to the wedding. She was right on time the day of the wedding along with her 2nd photographer and videographers and they were there with us for 8 hours. She even stayed late to capture a group of us jumping into the pool at the end of the night. I don’t care how much the vendor fee and day passes are to get these people on the hotel grounds, it was 100% worth the extra money. The price of the photo packages equaled approximately the same as the hotel would have charged and these photos were by far the most amazing photos I’ve ever seen.
All in all the wedding…the hotel…the vendors were incredible and we wouldn’t have changed a thing. If anyone has questions, don’t hesitate to ask. I don’t mind reliving our day over and over to answer questions or concerns.
Lindsay and Tim