Married or going to be married at Grand Palladium Punta Cana?
Posted 14 October 2008 - 03:33 PM
Posted 21 October 2008 - 09:30 PM
Posted 22 October 2008 - 04:20 PM
Posted 25 October 2008 - 06:47 PM
Posted 26 October 2008 - 02:33 AM
I'm getting married in Mexico, but I've been in a wedding at the Palladium Punta Cana, Nov 2005 (brother/sister in law to be). It was beautiful!! We stayed at the Royal end of the resort. We hadn't heard of it until we landed, but we upgraded from the Palace. It is adults only and super delux!! Breakfast by the pool and it's own beautiful lobby. I would suggest the upgrade to this part if it is possible. It really made our trip special!
The wedding was amazing. She went with the upgraded flowers, wedding in the gazebo, and dinner at one of the a la cartes (there were 12 of us). They had the horse and carriage as well - it was breath taking. They had lots of pics in the garden and the beach. Not to scare anyone, but another couple got married on the beach and a lot of the pictures the woman was dealing with her hair flying around.
They went with the resort photography/videographer and they were amazing. They got a DVD of the day, and beautiful photos. The hand made album is a leather-bound photo album. The pages are very thick and the photos are just gorgeous. I can't say enough about the book - never seen anything like it before.
You can try this link to see a few pics of it all:
Posted 28 October 2008 - 04:36 AM
As for the difference between the Bavaro, Punta Cana and even the Palace, there isn't really that much of a difference except for which area of the resort you are in. Some of the Bavaro rooms are a bit smaller I believe, but when we stayed there a few years ago, we were put into the villas that are in the central area there.
Posted 14 December 2008 - 10:57 AM
Posted 14 December 2008 - 09:17 PM
Posted 10 January 2009 - 02:18 PM
I looked at this forum quite a bit before our wedding in November 2008 at Grand Palladium. Many posts were helpful so I am writing this to give back in a way...hope it can help someone out. Please send me a message or post if you have any questions.
We stayed in GP Punta Cana, so our wedding coordinator was Isyuney. Communication over email was slow and not always helpful beforehand, but she was very attentive and helpful when we got there.
You will meet with her at the resort a couple days before the wedding to set up flowers, extras such as more bottles of champagne, place to eat, menu, and music (although we told her over email that we wanted the trio), and any other details. We had one meeting two days before and one more meeting the day before.
I don't know the reason she won't set up that stuff over email but it did work out just fine.
We were married in the gazebo and it was decorated absolutely beautifully. We didn't need to bring any decorations but my mom did bring a white aisle runner and that was nice because I wasn't a big fan of the red brick aisle they have. Maybe I am just used to white aisles, it is personal opinion. We weighted the white aisle with a couple rocks from outside the gazebo and a couple bags of extra sand from the sand ceremony and that worked well (we had some white bags and tied a bow of tulle - you couldn't tell it was sand). The aisle looked great.
We had 16 guests. After we were finished walking down the aisle and were ready to start the ceremony, Isyuney welcomed everyone into the gazebo to watch, and that was nice. There was room.
Wedding Day, Pre-Ceremony
Everyone met in the lobby, except me, my dad, and my two sisters - we were in my sister's room. A vehicle took all the guests to the gazebo. The pastor and photographer were also ready at the gazebo (the photographer did take a few "getting ready" pics in the rooms before heading over there). Isyuney called us in the room when they were ready for us, and we were picked up in a golf cart type vehicle. It took us to the gazebo and everything was ready to go when we got there!
I would recommend the trio. The music was beautiful and it was only $70. They stroll behind you as you're walking down the aisle with father or whoever is giving you away. After the ceremony, they played music while we had a first dance, mother-son dance, father-daughter dance, and one dance with everyone (or whoever wanted)...that was another benefit of using the gazebo rather than the beach.
We had Pastor Rick York from Eastern Dominican Christian Mission. He perfoms Christian ceremonies in English. Communication with him before the wedding was quick and easy over email. The ceremony he performed was beautiful and meaningful. We were very happy with it and so were our parents. After setting up the wedding over email, he emailed us a script of a ceremony and welcomed us to make any changes and email it back to him.
Here is his link
Eastern Dominican Christian Mission
Symbolic or Legal
If you are going to do legal, get the paperwork done as soon as you can. We were going to do a legal AND religious ceremony in PC, and the consulate assured us that there was enough time despite us doing it last minute...but they didn't get our documents to us on time and they actually told us the package was in the mail when they hadn't even processed and signed the papers yet. Then, they didn't use the Express Mail envelope we paid for and mailed with our documents, but they told us they did! They just sent it standard ground mail. They faxed everything to us and resort the day before we left but the WC said the judge wouldn't accept it faxed. If we had started the document process earlier, we would have had time to sort through any complications with but for various reasons it took us a while to decide how exactly we were going to do the ceremony.
SO, we did the religious ceremony in PC and just handled the legal aspect the week we got back, and that worked out fine. Our marriage, vows, witnesses, wedding took place in PC. There were some benefits of doing the legal work at home. My (now) husband did not have health insurance and was able to get on mine right away because we had a marriage license. If we did it in PC, it would be several months before we could show we were married (last summer, he paid $1,300 to go to emergency room for stitches, yikes! we need national health care in the US but anyway...). Having the license also ended up helping us buy a house. Also, we got to choose our time for the ceremony. With the legal, it was going to have to be in the evening which would require us to take pics beforehand, which would require us to see one another before walking down the aisle, and I wasn't really thrilled about that. And, the symbolic wedding (called "renewal of vows" at GP) was half the price of the legal wedding!...only cost $550. There are benefits of doing the legal ceremony in PC too...consider your options.
They allow you to have guests toss rice after the ceremony. We filled cute little drawstring organza bags (from a fabric/craft store) with rice, and brought them with us. However, after asking Isyuney about rice, she brought a basket full of it...I guess she didn't know we had the bags, but the basket would have worked out fine (no extra charge).
They provide you with one bottle of champagne for a toast after the ceremony. They will serve people wine for free if the bottle runs out...we just ordered the extra bottles of champ...it is a wedding after all.
It was beautiful and delicious, and way more than enough for 18 people. My husband and I are of different racial/ethnic backgrounds but they gave us a topper with two white people. It was kind of funny, we laughed about it. I thought there was no topper so it was a surprise. So...ask about the topper beforehand if it is a concern for you.
General Order of Things
This is how it went for us...
-"getting ready" pics
-Champ toast and cake cutting in gazebo (they brought beer too, everything was ready and set up nicely in the gazebo and they had an extra worker to serve the drinks)
-Rice toss - walking back down aisle
-Group pic with everyone, all guests
-Family/attendant pics in gazebo
-Wedding couple pics in garden then beach
-We (couple) then walked back to lobby of GPPC with photographer, met most guests and walked to La Uva, which is VERY close to GPPC
-Dinner and after dinner details below
We ate on the terrace at La Uva and that was fantastic. There was no one else on the terrace so we had it to ourselves. If you can do this, I would recommend it. We couldn't see the ocean because it was dark out, but it is right by the ocean so you have the sound and the breeze. There are also some ceiling fans if I remember correctly. If the nights are hot when you're there, the terrace may not be pleasant in your nice clothes. We had Chicken Florentine for dinner, French onion soup for appetizer, and fried ice cream (and wedding cake) for dessert, plus the salad bar was open the whole time. Everything was good. The WC printed out a nice menu and set one by each plate. For favors, we brought jordan almonds and butter mints in (separate) tulle packets.
Most of us had drinks and great conversation at one of the bars until in closed, took the trolley to the sports bar, and then went to the disco...fun night!
I just reviewed Photo Souvenir on another thread...WONDERFUL WONDERFUL WONDERFUL. We were very happy with them and I highly recommend them. Please see Photo Souvenir thread for more details.
GP Resort in general
We would definitely go back. It was a good place to go with a group because there is a lot to do, 11 restaurants, several bars, nice sports complex, casino, quiet pools, louder pools with activities and music, great beach...sun lovers and shade lovers can lie close to one another because there is plenty of both.
It is big enough so that people can wander off and be on their own and not always have to be around â€œthe groupâ€, but then join up to eat or whatever.
We did have to reserve beach chairs early in the morning - took turns waking up early to do it. FOOD - we partly chose this resort based on good reviews of food and we can confirm those reviews. Everyone LOVED the food. My mother in-law even ate a lot and she never eats a lot. There are plenty of choices for everyone. The buffets are great. We checked out a few a la cartes and our favorite was the Spanish one. But...BRING A PILLOW! We thought the pillows were really uncomfortable and that was our only complaint about the place.
I was able to carry my dress in its garment bag on the plane without a problem. There is a closet in the front of the plane to hang the dress and there was plenty of room. My dress had no "poof". If you have poof, you may want to call the airline to ask how big their closet is. My dress was beaded, which turned out to be a plus because I didn't have to worry about wrinkling while lugging it around.
We didn't use one, didnâ€™t want to pay for one. We booked our immediate family through Expedia and friends and other family booked on their own. I still don't know the best way to do it though. Having friends and other family book on their own worked out fine. We booked three "groups" through Expedia for our immediate family. I would not do that again. Once you book a group, no individuals can make changes. If one person can't go, you can't be refunded, and if one person wants to stay longer, you can't make the change. You can only change the entire group's itinerary, and that may depend on the protection plan you get. And once you do that, you are not guaranteed the same price if you book again. The price was good and we didn't run into any major problems but I would look into other options. WC said she thought Apple vacations was better.
Guest bags at hotel
We made up bags with the following â€“ chap stick with spf, aloe vera gel, pamphlet of common Spanish words and phrases (printed out on colored paper that matched maidâ€™s dresses), gum, mints.
Whew, that was a long review.
All in all it was a beautiful, romantic wedding and a wonderful place to share it with close family and friends!
Best wishes with your planning.
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