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Melissa (mridgway)'s Cabo Del Sol Wedding Review


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#1 mridgway

mridgway
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    Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:31 PM

    Hi Ladies,

    I have not gotten on this forum for quite some time, but thought I'd at least put up my review from our wedding. We had such a great experience, I'd be happy to share additional information with anyone who is interested. Since I do not get on the forum much, PM me if you are interested in additional information.

    Sheraton Hacienda Del Mar: We had 127 guests in for the wedding and 110 of them stayed at the Sheraton Hacienda Del Mar. My parents have a timeshare there and we have stayed there many times before. We were lucky enough to book rooms over a year in advance, when they had a special rate ("Latin Hot Fare" which is 1/2 off). Our guests loved this location and the service and staff here are incredible.

    Frontier Airlines: We arranged for a group travel discount through Frontier Airlines. We had many guests flying in from Denver and we knew they would be using Frontier to fly to Mexico. If we could guarantee 20 guests would use their airlines they would give guests 10% off the lowest published fare. This included all websales and promotions. It worked great for our group. I'm sure other airlines have similar programs - if you know you are going to have 20 or more people using one airline, it might be worth calling about.

    Baja Weddings: I cannot say enough great things about their service. I worked with both Emlee and Gaby through Baja Weddings. They did an excellent job of keeping things organized for us. The absolute best part about their service was their suggestions for vendors. It was very nice to know that we were getting the best possible person without having to go through the process of researching each vendor. Gaby was there to help me with all the parts of our wedding. She brought 3 assistants to help with our rehearsal and on our wedding day. They kept things running so smoothly and were so important to keeping us all sane that day. At the end of the week, I was able to sit back and enjoy all aspects of my wedding and I know this is because I had total faith in Gaby and her assistants.

    Suzanne Morel Spa: We used Suzanne Morel for my hair and make-up and for a spa party the day before the wedding. They did such a nice job and the girls were so nice. I had my trial appointment scheduled for the day we landed in Cabo (I do not suggest this...) and as luck would have it our flight was late. They stayed at their office after they were closed to make sure that I was able to do my trial. We went through a few different options for hairstyles and kept trying options until it was absolutely perfect. In the end, they did such a great job and I was very pleased with how it turned out.

    Luggage Tags: Our guests loved the luggage tags we had sent prior to the wedding. We used our logo design that we had done by Creative Montage on one side, and printed Guest contact information on the back. I work at the U of Utah and so I had our printing services on campus do the color printing for me. I bought a small laminator from Office Max and did the laminating myself. I was able to order the laminating pouches online for much cheaper than getting them in the store. They looked great and held up very well.

    Welcome Bags: Our colors were orange and fuchsia so we got orange collapsible coolers for our welcome bags. We had our logo printed on the front. Our guests loved these!! Other items we had inside: frisbees with logo, homemade cookies from my mom, 2 water bottles, personalized music CDs w/logo on cover, granola bars, bags of coffee with logo sticker on bags, welcome packet (welcome letter, schedule of events, list of guests & room numbers, spanish phrases), and CD Mailer. The CD Mailer was probably the best idea we had for these bags - I got blank CDs in Cabo, and put them in CD Mailer envelopes that had our address already on them. I also went ahead and put postage on them. Then I attached a note asking everyone to send us a copy of their pictures from their trip. When we got home from our honeymoon we already had 10 CDs waiting for us in the mail and it has been so much fun to relive the week through our guests pictures. (Especially since I took no pictures myself).

    Legal Ceremony: We opted to do our legal ceremony in the judge's chambers on Valentine's Day. We brought our parents, my sister, his brother, my 90 year old grandmother, his 89 year old grandfather. I am really glad that we did this privately and that we had this ceremony with our close family. Even though it was all in Spanish, it was very meaningful. And it felt very "authentic". When the ceremony was over, Gaby told us that there was a reporter from the paper there who was doing a story on couples who got married over Valentine's Day. The next day our picture and an article about our ceremony were in the paper. It was such a neat experience and something we will always cherish.

    Sunset Cruise Welcome Party: We took all our guests on a Sunset Dinner Cruise through Sunrider. We rented the Adventurer (or whichever is the large boat) and our friends/family had a blast. We had people from all over the country there and by the time we got off that boat you'd think everyone had know each other for years. I am so happy that we chose to do this as our guests had such a great time and it was the perfect way to get to know each other. The food was good (Mexican buffet) and the drinks were strong!! Plus we saw many whales and the beautiful Cabo scenery. I would definitely recommend an activity like this! Baja Weddings set up bus transportation for us to and from the Sheraton. (Except all our guests were so drunk after the boat cruise that we all made them drop us off at Squid Roe instead of going back to the hotel). We have many pictures from this as well if anyone would like to see the boat.

    Ceremony & Reception Cabo Del Sol Golf Course: This place is absolutely amazing. If you are looking for the "wow" factor, this place has it. The grounds are amazing, the clubhouse was amazing, and the food was amazing. Our guests cannot stop talking about how great it was. We have heard over and over again that they served "the best wedding food I'd ever had". And Susanna and her staff are so very nice. We had looked at other locations - in particular the Sheraton - and what we liked most about CDS is that we'd have the location all to ourselves. There were no other guests there, no other parties going on, no other people just walking by and watching. And the prices were about the same as the Sheraton. They also do additional things for you for no fee - candles in the entrance area, luminaries in the circular drive/front entrance. They do such a great job on the food presentation - it was incredible. I've got so many pictures of all of this - please PM me if you'd like me to send them to you.

    Ceremony: Our civil ceremony was held on Saturday, Feb 16 at CDS Upper Range. John Fagan, from Baja Weddings, was our officiant. He did such a good job - many people remarked on how personal the wedding was and how meaningful his message was. This stands out in my mind as the best part of the whole week - Adam and I had so much fun up there getting married!

    Mariachi: I absolutely loved this part!! We had a 12 piece (I think...) mariachi band that began playing after our kiss. This brought a whole new dynamic to the wedding! One of our guests said that they are never going to be able to go to another wedding and not think about that moment when we kissed and they started playing. He said all weddings should have a mariachi band and I agree!

    Flowers: They were gorgeous! We used the vendor that Baja Weddings uses and she really did a great job. My mother was probably most concerned about the flowers - just worried that what she had in mind would not be what the florist had in mind. Especially not seeing a mock-up or pictures of how they would look ahead of time. In the end, I think my mother and I both wish we hadn't worried so much about it, because they really were spectacular.

    DJ Raul Sanchez: Probably out of everything for the wedding, this is the thing I would have changed a little. Let me just preface this by saying I am PICKY about music. We had 3 hours of dancing, so I brought my ipod and a list of 2 hours worth of songs that should be played. If I could do it over again, I probably would have written down the whole 3 hours worth of songs as well as what order to play them in. Or at least been very specific about what songs not to play. Raul did a good job, I am just super picky and in the end there were songs played I didn't want to hear and others that weren't played that I did want to hear. I am usually the DJ at our parties and have a good read on what works with our group of friends/family. We still had a wonderful time and had lots of people dancing - but if I could do it over I would have been more specific.

    Photographer - Manuel Burgoin: I do not even know where to begin. I am thrilled with the pictures that Manuel took! First of all, he is such a sweetheart - it was a pleasure to have him be a part of our day. Second, his pictures are incredible! He sent me 2 CDs full of pictures - probably 4,000+ total pictures. I had the hardest time narrowing it down because they are all so good. He really is an artist and does an amazing job. I've uploaded over 900 pictures into KodakGallery. If you would like to see his photos, PM me your email address and I will forward the album to you. I'm going to try and upload a few to this site as well.

    Honeymoon - Zihuatanejo: We spent one week in Cabo, followed by another week in Zihuatanejo. This was such a great way to wind down from our hectic wedding week. Zihuatanejo in February is awesome - 90 and sunny every day! We loved the town and were really able to relax while we were there. I highly recommed getting away by yourselves, even if for a day or two after the wedding. It was really nice to have that time for the two of us and to reflect on our wonderful wedding experience!

    Ok, that was really long! And for some reason I feel like I am forgetting something. Anyways, I am happy to answer questions or send photos if anyone needs them. I am going to attempt to attach pictures, however I've never have much luck with this!

    Melissa

    #2 Sandra E.

    Sandra E.
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      Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:41 PM

      Melissa, Thank you for posting this, sounds like everything turned out perfect! Congratulations on such a wonderful wedding.

      #3 mridgway

      mridgway
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        Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:42 PM

        Ok, we'll see if this works..

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        #4 ACDCDCAC

        ACDCDCAC
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        • Wedding Location:Santa Maria Bay Beach, Cabo San Lucas, BCS, Mexico
        • LocationSeattle

        Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:43 PM

        Wow great review!

        #5 ACDCDCAC

        ACDCDCAC
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        • Wedding Location:Santa Maria Bay Beach, Cabo San Lucas, BCS, Mexico
        • LocationSeattle

        Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:43 PM

        More pics! Your dress is lovely!

        #6 Amy&Andy

        Amy&Andy
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          Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:46 PM

          Oh Melissa I am so happy to read your review! I was waiting for it!
          I have almost an identical wedding planned!
          I'm also having our rehearsal dinner on the Sunrider....using Manuel B for photos, and using Gaby and Jon Fagan with baja weddings (which you already knew!).....I am just thrilled that everything turned out so well. I'm getting so excited!!!
          This just confirms everything will be wonderful.

          #7 Yari

          Yari
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            Posted 11 March 2008 - 12:47 PM

            Great review and pics!

            #8 Janet

            Janet
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              Posted 11 March 2008 - 01:01 PM

              great review! I am thinking of Zihuatenajo for our next vacation, would you mind telling me a little more about where you stayed and how it compared to Cabo? I'm so glad your wedding was wonderful!

              #9 mridgway

              mridgway
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                Posted 11 March 2008 - 01:03 PM

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                Shoot! I wish they would show up bigger!

                #10 mridgway

                mridgway
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                  Posted 11 March 2008 - 01:15 PM

                  Amy - you are going to have a fabulous wedding! You will love the boat cruise - it really was one of the biggest highlights of the entire event. I'm so happy that we chose this as our welcome event - definitely worth the $!

                  And John is an absolute sweetheart - he does such a great job with the ceremony. He really makes the whole experience meaningful for the both of you!

                  And I know you will love Gaby - I was so impressed with her and the entire Baja Weddings team!


                  Janet - Zihuatanejo is great! It is much quieter than Cabo or Cancun. Not so many American tourist - you see a lot more locals and more people from Mexico taking vacations there. We certainly met many Americans down there, but it isn't as Americanized as some of the larger tourist towns in Mexico. The Americans we did met all seemed to be people who had traveled a lot in Mexico and then found Zihuatanejo and came back year after year. The weather is so perfect down there this time of year, I can see why.

                  We stayed at Villa San Sebastian which we booked online through "Travel Judy". She has a blog that we had found - I'm sure we have the website address somewhere. It was a lot cheaper than many of the hotels in that area. (I think it was $159/night or something like that). It was above Playa La Ropa and had a beautiful view of the bay.

                  We went over to Ixtapa a couple times and it seemes like a lot of large hotels (kinda a mini Cancun). We liked Zihuatanejo much better as it seemed to have a lot more character.

                  Some fun things to do/restaurants - we went to Troncones and Manzanillo Bay (which are surfing communities) for one afternoon, Il Mare for dinner, Coconuts for dinner, and there is this place on Playa La Ropa (why can't I remember the name) that has the best fish tacos!




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