By JaimeCF2BR, · 987 Views · 1 Comment
My review may be slightly different than others. We joined Karisma’s Exotic Travellers Club during our first site visit (March 2010). We paid a pretty penny for our membership, so my expectations were pretty high, which might make some comments snooty. But this review might be helpful if any other future brides decide to join Exotic. Which I definitely recommend!
Booking Rooms: I booked all of my guests’ rooms directly through Exotic. Due to our membership, we have a larger discount than available anywhere else. It was A LOT more work playing TA for everyone, but worth it for the discount. There was the option to have all of my guests contact Exotic directly, but I was much more comfortable playing the middleman. Their concierge service is in Miami, and they were absolutely amazing to deal with! I had one main contact for the entire year and he always responded to my emails within an hour! During crunch time we would easily transfer 10+ emails a day.
Airport Transfers: We used Lomas for all of our shuttles. We got ourselves a limo…which was fabulous!! Then we got private shuttle transfers for the rest of our guests. Everyone arrived, and I didn’t hear any complaints, so I guess everyone’s transfer was good. Though I don’t think anyone would’ve complained since they didn’t have to pay for it :)
Greeting: One of the perks of being an Exotic member is the private check in to the left of the lobby. This part was an awesome surprise for all of our guests! They sit you on couches and bring you champagne and all of your paperwork to you. Also, most of our guests were able to get into their rooms before the standard 3pm check-in.
Rooms: We put all of our guests into the premium section, which was fabulous! For exotic members, they are called “royal suites” and are about the same price as regular Jacuzzi Suites. All rooms had champagne, aromatherapy, pillow menu, butler service, Wi-Fi, and 2 bottles of liquor. We all used the premium pool and beach during the day, which was awesome! Since nobody really ventured outside the premium section, I dont think our guests truly realized how good they had it, so I still heard a few unnecessary complaints. For our room, we had originally booked the Honeymoon Swimup, and they upgraded us to the 2 Bedroom Presidential! At first I was a little upset because its on the 4th floor, and I had been envisioning for the past year our room being the Honeymoon Swimup, then our family and bridal party being the next 8 premium swimups next to us. But we ended up getting A LOT of use out of the presidential. It came with a private butler, tons of liquor, premium beer, and lots more…so we ended up throwing a Welcome Party in our suite one night. Obviously the presidential was awesome…I just wished they would’ve told me in advance they don’t actual put anyone in the premium honeymoon swimup (model only).
Resort and Restaurants: This was our 3rd trip to Azul, and every trip I have been extremely impressed with everything! They are always working to improve, even when it already looks gorgeous. Every staff member is friendly and willing to help. All of the restaurants are great! I really couldn’t say which is my favorite because its all depending on the kind of food I’m in the mood for. A few people have commented on the temperature of the food, and I have to agree. I do not recall ever getting a hot plate of anything. Its all still amazing (especially for an all-inclusive resort), but it would be nice to get a hot plate every once in a while.
We didn’t make it to LeChique on this trip, but we went in the past and it truly is an experience! If you have 3 hours to spare for dinner one night, I highly recommend it.
Onsite Meeting: This meeting went pretty good. I'm pretty sure my WC was new because there were a few details he hadnt heard of and we had to explain (i.e. He had never heard of a signature drink!) We went through the detail sheet first. It felt like they were trying to rush through the meeting a bit, but I tried to take some control and slow it down a bit and make sure they understood every detail of what I was asking for. There is no question too big or too small, so I really stress the importance of getting clarification on every detail that is important to you. Next we went through the decorations we brought. We packed everything into one big suitcase with an inventory list and description of where/how we want everything. We brought sashes, table runners, xmas lights, lanterns, menus, placecards & holders, table numbers & monogrammed beverage napkins. I fought for an “organization discount”, so we paid about $180 for setup J. They were super impressed with my neatness and organization, but I have to say I was disappointed in the way they returned my suitcase. Everything was completely crammed back in with no attempt to make it neat. I’m sure nobody else would care…just one of my things.
Wedding: When it came to setting up the ceremony and reception, the onsite team truly nailed it! Everything was setup beautifully. I couldn’t have imagined it looking more perfect. The minister was fabulous. She spoke perfectly clear and was very passionate with her words. We only made a few minor changes to their standard script. The print out I gave the onsite team had their standard writing in black and all of my changes in bright blue. To get the best out of your minister, Id really recommend staying as close to their standard as possible.
Reception: Again, the onsite team did a beautiful job with the set up. For music, we brought an iPod and had different playlists (cocktails, dinner, first dances, dance music). We had a friend run the iPod, so this part went smooth. I gave both the WC and a friend a copy of my schedule of events, and our friend ended up taking charge and made sure everything happen when it was supposed to. I’m sure the WCs were making sure everything was perfect on the backside or something, but we really didn’t see them much.
Overall the wedding weekend was absolutely fabulous! I have BDW to thank more than anything. I truly got all of the ideas and information I needed from this forum, and really only used the WCs to finalize details and make payments. Azul Sensatori is gorgeous, and perfect for a big group vacation/wedding weekend! I hate giving any negative feedback at all; I just wanted to be as honest as possible so future brides can fully prepare if they are crazy organized planners like me :)
I’m trying to keep this as summarized as possible, so please PM me if you want more details. I could go on and on!
This is the presidential, and there is a full size bedroom and bathroom on each side.
Table Setting before centerpieces were added (flowers from ceremony)
Me and my dad. This ramp in 3" heels was scary!
The reception setup was beautiful at night...unfortunately, this is the only pic i have of it so far.
Bridal Party on Pier
Once the pro pics are available, I will post them on the Azul Sensatori forum.