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ROYAL PLAYA DEL CARMEN BRIDES: were kids allowed for the day? ...and other questions

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Originally Posted by Lisa DSO View Post


I really wish I just had the wedding and didn't have to do an AHR lol. I have so many people adding additional people to their reply cards- who does that? Like if I invited 1, they add 3....or if it addressed to Mr. and Mrs. X, they added their children (my website says adults only)....sigh..... One couple hasn't spoken to me since I politely mentioned that it was adults only.


Now my co-workers (guys) are bitching about me not letting them bring dates. Mind you, half of my team is single and will all be going, so it's not like they won't know anyone. We just can't afford all these extras people. I tried telling them this and that it was important to me to have them there and i just couldn't afford it. They upset me so bad and started saying "so we're being punished for being single?"  Sigh...can't win. :-(



Lisa - OH NO!! I'm so sorry to hear that. The fact that you are even doing an AHR is amazing and shows how much you care about people being apart of your celebration. Due to budgeting we're not doing one at all - hence having a destination wedding. Keep your chin up and stay positive. Hopefully they will understand your point of view.

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Great review Rachel,


Thanks for sharing and congratulations!

Originally Posted by orbitingbklyn View Post



We got married at The Royal on Dec 3.  We are back!  Since the other wedding reviews I read were so helpful, I wanted to do my own.


In a nutshell – the wedding & hotel (The Royal) far exceeded our expectations and wildest dreams.  We had 65 guests. 


Hotels: Most guests stayed at The Royal and those with kids stayed at Gran Porto.  This worked out superbly because The Royal people could go hang out at the Gran Porto but then come back to The Royal.  The food at The Royal was better than Gran Porto.  I only ate at the buffet at Gran Porto, but went running back to the amazing food at Royal.  It was nice to go to the Gran Porto & hang out with all the kids (we had about 10 kids of all ages) and then nice to come back to the elegance of The Royal.  Our guests all asked to be invited back for the one year (or 6 month) anniversary trip!


The Royal – the facilities are amazing. The staff is so attentive and most of all they are sincere and kind. Coming from NYC, we know what good food and service can be.  The Royal hits it on the mark!  We had some pretty discerning guests who have traveled around the world and expect luxury, and they got it.  Mediterraneo restaurant had delicious food that was artfully presented with great service. I did not eat at the Chefâ€s Plate but was told it was amazing!  The facilities from check-in to check-out were superb – you get a personal concierge who will handle anything you need.  The beds were comfy, they give you about 10 pillows per bed and you can request specific types of pillows.  Room service and the Magic Box were a big hit.  I ordered all sorts of things at all times and it was always prompt.  The first day, I sat on the floor in my room with a plate of guacamole from room service with sister-in-law and we did all the prep for the wedding (welcome bags, etc).  I ended up having a room with 2 double beds rather than one king bed because of availability when we checked in.  I advised that I wanted a king bed and by the next day my personal concierge was tracking me down with a new room available, but we decided to stay in our original room because it was a good location and we were already unpacked.  My parents had their room changed to a location closer to the pool because my mom had injured her foot (before the trip) and could not walk far.  While the wedding package included a room upgrade if available, there were no ocean view suites available - this did not matter and we were very happy with our room - you're hardly in it!


WC Zulma – she is so great and so calm.  We sat down with her at our initial meeting and she listened to everything that we wanted and took all of our decorations, etc and took notes. Everything was perfect.  I stopped in a few times to drop of some things for the wedding and if she was not there, the other WCs knew who I was and took care of me.  Zulma was present during the entire wedding and made sure everything ran smoothly (which it did!).


We did the Mayan Ceremony at 4pm on the beach in front of the gazebo.  The shaman was great and the ceremony was very meaningful and perfect!  We had the mayan dancers and it was just awesome!!!!


Following the ceremony, there was a 1/2 hour break (maybe a bit less because the ceremony started a little late due to our guests being a bit slow to get there) while we took photos on the beach right there.  Everyone had a blue tequila cocktail from the ceremony so it worked out well.  Then the cocktail hour followed at 5 and that was also located at the beach in front of gazebo.  The cocktail hour was supposed to be cold food only but there was hot food – delish sesame chicken strips and popcorn shrimp – other yummy stuff too, but thatâ€s what I focused on to make sure I ate!


Wedding Reception: For the reception, we moved down the beach to the area in front of Pelicanos.  This was ideal because we did not have the cocktail hour tables still set up next to our reception. (they were down the beach a ways).  Jose, the manager of Spice restaurant (the buffet spot at The Royal) was our head waiter. To say he was amazing is putting it mildly.  Throughout the reception he checked in with me to see when I wanted various courses served (people were dancing & not really sitting & eating!) and also made sure I knew when my food was out so I could grab a few bites.  The service was great.  But it did not end there.  For days, I had people greeting me at the hotel by name!  William, a server at Pelicanos, greeted me by name and wished me congratulations on my wedding. We saw Jose at Spice several times and he was so gracious in congratulating us and our families.


Lighting:  This was a concern for me because I am an avid photographer and lighting for photos on the dark beach was important.  If only I had known – no worries!!!  There are spotlights set up (which they will also turn off if you request).  One small note: the tables at the reception do light up, but not very brightly.  It did not matter, it was just an observation.  That might be my sole criticism. (ha ha!). 


Photographer: Nate BroShot.  Licensetostill.com.  He was awesome and fun to work with and my friends (including married ones) were fighting over him :).  Without going on and on and on, I highly recommend him.  I have not seen my photos, but I have seen his work and I am so excited for our photos that I almost cannot stand it!  We did a TTD the session Sunday at sunrise (wedding Friday). My fiancé was a bit skeptical about the TTD but while we were hanging out with Nate, running around various locations on the beach north of the resort (we drove 5 minutes), he admitted that this was awesome and that the photos are going to be amazing!!


Music: we did an Ipod with a person to run it for $80.  There was a table set up to the side with 3 guys, one worked the ipod.  I think the others worked the lights and sound system, but not sure.  I made a playlist in the order I wanted the songs.  We also had a guest sing and did the Hora with the chair lifting.  I just wrote a note telling the Ipod guy a few instructions.  It worked out really well.  We also had the light-up dance floor which was awesome and a big hit!!  We also had a microphone for speeches, cake cutting, and our guest singing.  This worked out well - I just had to signal for the microphone and it was handed to me and the music lowered.


SpaAzul:  First, let me say that the facilities are beautiful and clean.  I used the sauna and steam room and soaked in the hot tubs and cold plunge.  I also had a deep tissue massage that was excellent (it was a few days after the wedding - the perfect antidote to all of the planning and mingling, etc.).  I planned on having my hair and my mom's hair & makeup done for the wedding.  We had a trial two days before and both decided to do our own hair.  My mom's hair looked good but she said the woman pulled so hard that it was painful.  My mom started to get her makeup done but was not happy with the makeup the woman started to put on her so decided to not do it.  I had photos and a video of my hair and I must say that the woman totally replicated the hairstyle.  However, I have very thick hair & I was told that for the wedding I had to come with it blown out due to time constraints.  Also, at the trial, the curls were not as great as I wanted so that I could let my hair down during the wedding.  So, my 16 year old niece is a wiz with a curling iron and I decided to blow out my own hair & let her curl & style it.  Also, one of my best friends does wedding makeup as a side gig so she did our makeup and did a great job.  So for me it was great to have family/friends do my hair/makeup.  I've read reviews that SpaAzul did a great job with hair & makeup and I would not necessarily not use them based upon my review.  I am pretty picky about my hair and get it done at a Madison Avenue salon in NYC.


One other note, my sis-in-law has a child with severe and extensive food allergies.  They stayed at Gran Porto and after 2 days to adjust and explain to the staff about his allergies and what he likes to eat, they were great.  My sis-in-law was raving and sooo excited about the level of service and how they catered to her son – they even made a special menu for him for the whole week. They were so excited to not have to worry and search for food – they will definitely return!  Also, Zulma and the WC people made sure that he had an appropriate meal for the wedding and he ended up getting the same meal as the other children but appropriate to his food allergies.  This is just one example of the lengths that the staff goes to at the resorts.


I will try to post some photos in another post (never done it before).  If not, I will post a link later when I get some photos online.


Ladies-  My advice is to enjoy the planning process.  Don't stress.  Be creative and create your vision.  Don't stress if the WCs take a day or two to get back to you (that happened to me).  You have lots of time and it will all come together.  When you get there, you will be treated like royalty and the onsite WCs will ensure that you have the best day of your life!!!


I cannot wait to go back! 


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Beautiful pictures, love the mayan ceremony. Looks like everyone had a wonderful time:)

Originally Posted by orbitingbklyn View Post

these are all photos taken by various guests.



pelicanos beach.jpg

this is a wedding being set up at Pelicanos Beach - it has the standard brown dance floor. (we had the light-up)



this is the set-up for the Mayan wedding - the altar



this is the shaman performing the ceremony  (the hair clip was recommended by another BDW bride - it's awesome!!).  dress from J Crew.



the mayan ceremony with dancers in background - there were onlookers but i did not notice them.  bouquet = mexican paper flowers.  i got them at home & made a bouquet.



our family and friends gathered around the ceremony & really blocked any people.  that's nate (photog) on my right in the red plaid shirt






shaman & mayan dancers





nate w dancers.jpg

this is nate (photog) capturing the mayan dancers




cocktail hour



we had this mexican trio play during the cocktail hour



light-up dance floor


floor 2.jpg



cake topper.jpg

cake - chocolate with raspberries = delicious!  i got these cake toppers at a shop in town.

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Hope you had an awesome day msglave!! Can't wait to hear all about it. Congratulations!!

Originally Posted by msglave View Post

Hey Ladies!!!!

I just wanted to give you a quick shout out. The wedding is in 3 hrs!!!! The resort is beautiful! I have a whole lot of tips. I won't be back for another week. I'll try to check back in before then!

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Originally Posted by JHarris View Post




Originally Posted by Heidi82 View Post


I've been MIA but I just wanted to say CONGRATS to all the recent brides and the very soon to be brides!  Everyone looks so happy on their wedding day!

Thanks for the reviews and planning journals too!


I am thinking about moving my reception to the ballroom for weather purposes; my wedding is in July and my family thinks it will be sweltering!  LOL  We live in Texas already!


Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! msnparty.gif


Heidi - I am on the same page as you!! We're in Houston too. We're definitely doing an indoor reception. We would rather have everyone in AC comfort instead of complaining how much more humid it is. LOL..... Are you bringing your own photographer or using the resorts?




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Sorry!  What I meant to post didn't show up!


JHarris - We went on a site visit to the resort in October and completely forgot to take a look at the ballroom(s)!  We just always thought that the reception would be outside!  From what I have seen so far from pictures the ballroom looks fine though!


We booked Gonzalo Nunez to be our photographer.  We are having him for 10 hours on the day of the wedding and then a TTD session 2 days later.  The package is $2000 and I couldn't find anything that could beat it!  :)

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Congrats orbiting!!! the mayan ceremony looked so cool!


Msglave can't wait to hear about it and see pics. Enjoy your honeymoon.


Lisa - That is annoying but you gotta do what you gotta do and don't worry people will get over it :)

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so i just thought i would share my at home reception with you guys :)


at first we weren't going to do an AHR.  we had 60 people go to mexico....we figured we'd be seeing most of our family soon afterwards between xmass and new years....but my extended family (mostly grandma's) really wanted to see me in my dress. so we decided to do cocktails/drinks/a happy hour type thing last night. we were expecting 125-150. my husband is from milwaukee, and i am from minnesota, so we didn't expect people to make the 5 hour drive but many people rsvp'd and were making a weekend out of it. well as i'm sure you have heard - MN gets DUMPED on friday night into saturday and all day saturday!!! awesome


so i wake up, in panic mode because i don't know if we shold cancel or not.  looking outside - i didn't want to go to my own AHR! but then i talk to the venue, they said we'd be charged for the food whether we go or not, but we wouldn't be charged for the alcohol. so we are like, well if we are going to be paying like $1500 we might as well go eat and drink what we can! so we tried to contact people -tell them it is still on but we didn't expect anyone to make it, no hard feelings if you can't go etc.....


well we had some people from out of town come up on friday night, so they were all ready to go. i'm all calmed down and go to my hair appt and the roads are just ridiculous. it took me 45 min to get out of the parking lot, and once i finally did, i couldn't stop at a light etc because i couldn't start up again because i would be stuck. so im back in tears - on the phone teling my husband we aren't doing this - people can't drive and im just getting to the hotel and staying there. well he talked some sense into me and we went on with the night.


so it was suppose to go from 4-8:00, but we had the room til lmidnight and they said we can still be in there drinking etc if we want. so it all starts, im like thinking its going to be like 15 of us who were all at my house the night before eating and drinking and staring at each other all night. well it ended up being like 40 of us.....and the people who showed up were all like people i eidnt expect to come at all! they looked at the pictures, ate a lot of food, drank, and everyone was having a great time! it was awesome! the time flew by, everyone got along great, we had beer pong and card games going.....the bartender was giving us a ton of free drinks/shots (we were just hosting beer and wine) and most people ended up staying until midnight! about half the people got rooms at the hotel. and about 15 of our friends ended up staying and drinking in the room until about 2 in the morning! so what i thought was going to be just a disaster turned out to be a great time!


i guess in saying this, i wanted to pass on my thoughts about an AHR.  before it was going on - i was thinking it wasn't necessary. we had our wedding, it was perfect, this just seemed like a lot of work for something we were doing to please people who didn't go to the wedding. so if i were to do it over again--i don't think i would have one, just save the money. BUT if you do have one - i also had a great time, and i did get to wear my dress again :) and it was nice to see people i don't see too often, and they loved seeing the pictures. even the people who were at our AHR who were at the wededing, enjoyed the setup and seeing people who were at the wedding again - like a mini reunion. but also, i seriously woke up to like, a major blizzard. im sure some of you are from MN (see the video of the dome collapsing??) and yes i did get upset.....thought this day was ruined.....but after i just thought 'what happens will happen, can't control the weather' and i just went with the flow and i couldn't have been happier with the turnout! so i just want to say you can't get upset if things don't go exactly as planned. if you let that bother you, you might miss out on something that even though went not as planned, it will still be a great time! i don't know if that makes sense,  but i hope you know what i mean :) everyon had a wonderful time, i think i was smiling from about 4pm-2am and just didn't let the uncontrollable upset me :) so that is my story - and i hope it helps to keep others relaxed and don't let things stress you out! :)

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Thanks, Randi, that does help! My AHR is on 1/8 and I too am expecting about 150 people. Glad to hear that you enjoyed it because I have been kinda dreading it with all the whiners lol.

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