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Debs's Ocean Blue (Punta Cana) Wedding Review


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#1 Debs

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    Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:00 AM

    Resort

    What an absolutely stunning place! This resort was new in 2005, and to other locations in Punta Cana from what we have heard, this is a good thing. The d©cor is very modern, and we were often commenting about how we could take this or that idea and put it towards our own home!! The grounds were extremely well groomed, there were always workers out tending to the pool in the morning and the grounds.

    It’s so hard when you are picking a resort from a brochure or from word of mouth. We chose this resort based on the fact that it was new-ish and the pricing fit our budget. All of our guests were blown away by how beautiful it was.

    Click the image to open in full size. So Stunning!
    Click the image to open in full size. Courtyards

    Rooms

    First let me say the resort is huge. All our guests stayed in Villa 3 which is closer to the front of the resort, closer to the food! Our villa was 10, closest to the beach. There is a shuttle that runs the route of the resort, but count on doing a lot of walking. Anyway, the regular rooms were gorgeous! All our guests had 2 double beds and a jet tub in the bathrooms, which were quite large. Their rooms in villa 3 faced north, so were always in shade. As a result, a couple had a musty smell, but I had brought a bunch of scented candles and that took care of it.

    We had the honeymoon suite for the full 2 weeks we were there. I’m glad I booked this suite right from the start, as there were a few brides that week that had requested one but they were booked (there are only 10 honeymoon suites in the whole resort in villas 6 and 10). These rooms were AMAZING. The main floor had the king bed, dresser, living room and ocean facing balcony. The second floor had a second sitting room a 2 person jet spa and an outdoor shower. One minor problem with the shower clogged, but maintenance had that fixed in one afternoon.

    Click the image to open in full size.The room!
    Click the image to open in full size. The BED!!

    Staff

    Every staff member always had a smile on their face!! From housekeeping to grounds crew, waiters, bartenders, reception, everyone was extremely pleasant, saying Hola to everyone! Each bartender has a specialty drink, so make sure you go and explore all the different specialties! If you are ever there, make sure you say hey to Victor in the yellow pool bar and have one of his specials, unbelievable!!!

    Click the image to open in full size.Home of Victor!


    Food

    Anyone who could complain about the food here is insane!! You could literally eat at the massive buffet every single day and have something different to eat, but there were so many more options! For a la carte, there was the American (Route 66) and Mexican (OMG the chimichanga was amazing!) and the carribean grill at the beach that you could dress casually for, and the Italian and Dominican the men needed to wear pants for, also all amazing! As we were there for 2 weeks, Chris and I ate at each restaurant at least twice, except for the Dominican and Labrasa which we ate at once only. Our honeymoon package also included a dinner at the supplement needed steak house, which surprisingly was the only meal I was disappointed in. Funny eh? Anywhoo, the staff were amazingly diligent, but not to the point of stalking you to finish your plate.

    Wedding

    My wedding day was an absolute dream! We met with Julissa on Monday to go over the final arrangements, just the day before the wedding, but she is amazingly organized and can multi-task like nobody’s business!! She said we were very easy clients, not too many requests or demands! I just wanted a really simple wedding so this was perfect for us! The day was so easy! Relaxed by the beach and pool until noonish, then went back to the room and had a soak in the massive tub until 1 when I went to the spa to get my hair and makeup done. I had brought a picture of what I was looking for (my hair from a wedding in Feb) and she surpassed my expectations, she did a fantastic job! My make-up was also perfect, understated and natural. I got back to my room at about 3, took my time getting dressed and such. My photographer got to my room at about 3:30 – 3:45 and started shooting in the room where it was cool and then a bunch of pictures in the courtyard and whatnot. At 4:30 he left to go to the beach and shoot Chris and the guests, while I stayed back with my girlfriend and flowergirl Madison to wait for Julissa’s call.

    We were a tad delayed, but it was no biggie. I think the ceremony started at around 5pm. She came to get me in the buggy and shuttled me to the beach. I was getting ready to walk down the aisle and one of our guests came running up and said the minister wasn’t there!! Julissa looks around and says oh, there he is, at the BAR!! NICE!! Anyway, she flags him down and gets him off to the beach so I can continue down the aisle! The ceremony was super fast, I think only about 10 minutes max. The minister spoke in Spanish and Julissa translated. About the set up on the beach. We were lucky that there was a wedding on Monday so that we could see the set up and make a few adjustments. As with most beach set-ups, there were people walking behind along the beach, and stopping and gawking. We tried to eliminate this as much as possible by pushing the whole set up as close to the water as possible. This was easy as we were a small group. Most of the people got the hint and walked around us, but some still just went further into the water and walked in front. I think it made a big difference though.

    We finished up at around 5:30 (champagne, some pictures at the beach with the guests etc) and then Chris and I went to get more pictures done just the 2 of us.

    Reception

    We got back to LaBrasa for around 6:30 and made our way to dinner. It was great, we were not rushed at all, just whenever we were all back together (a bunch went back and changed out of long pants). We had the set up done in the inside corner of LaBrasa, and it was lovely. We had the tables set up in a U-shape, with the cake in the middle on a separate table. We just ordered off the menu, and as usual, the food was excellent! We had a relaxing dinner. We had our ipod/docking station set up, but they had wonderful Spanish type music playing so we never bothered. It seemed more authentic that way anyway. Then a wonderful trio came by and we did our first dance to that. Everything about it was magical!! Dinner/drinks broke up at around 9:30 or so with most of the peeps going back to their room, but about 6 of us moved to the terrace where we just chatted and had some bevvys till about 11:30 when Chris and I went back to our room. We set up the ipod again and danced our original first dance on the balcony just the two of us. It was great.

    Holiday in general

    Chris and I stayed 2 weeks. All of our other guests stayed just the 1 and it was perfect. For the most part, we did most things in the whole group (as there was 10 of us… makes me glad we didn’t have more people actually). We did one excursion together, Marinarium (swimming with sharks and stingrays) it was about the coolest thing ever!. Then after everyone else left, we just spent all our days lazing by the pool or beach. I will say by about day 12 we were ready to come home (Thurs night) but all in all, I would for sure do 2 weeks again in a minute. I would have liked to eat at LaBrasa again that second week, but it was closed every single day either for a private wedding or because the resort was not as full the second week. That was about the only disappointing thing, but what can you do?!

    Airline

    About the only mar on a perfect holiday. Our trip home. One word: Nightmare. That's putting it mildly.

    We get to the airport of course in plenty of time. 3 hours ahead. We were to board at 6:50 for our 7:30 flight. The airport in Punta Cana is small, so you can only walk around the place so many times before you are crawling to get on the plane to go home. The longer we waited, the more the Duty Free beckoned. So call me weak. Cheap booze will do you in every time.

    So the intercom comes on and says we will be delayed by 1 hour as there was a last minute plane change in Toronto. Ok, no problem. We are now working on arriving in TO at 12:30am instead of 11:30. No biggie. We start to board at 8:00. We are all on, and ready to go, but there is a delay. The captain says there is a problem with the emergency lights, they are working on it, we will update in 20 mins. 20 mins comes and goes and still no word from the captain. We were kept waiting on the plane forever, I mean FOR EVER, because the back door was open keeping the hot air coming in. We are thinking if it is just a freaking emergency light, someone stand there with a flashlight if the plane goes down, I wanna go home! Turns out it was the light that confirms the door is shut and pressurized would not come on, so for sure understandible that they would not take off.

    Finally after 3 hours on the plane at 11pm they told us to deplane. Back to the terminal we go. Hot. Tired. Frustrated!! They served us the rubber pizza we were supposed to eat on the plane.

    By 12:30 the Captain came and told us that the plane was fixed but that he could not fly because he had been up too long. Again, understandible. I know a few commercial pilots, and I had almost been expecting that. So. They unload all our luggage. After 3 more hours in the terminal we waited in line again to be packed on busses to varying hotels. Ours was 45 minutes from the airport! (Farther than our freakin hotel!). 3:15 we arrived at the hotel, to wait in line AGAIN to get a room (1 guy, then 2 people checking us in). We got to our room at 4am. It was nice enough, except for the cockroaches on our bed! UG.

    We had to be up and back in front of the hotel by 11 to go back to the terminal. Chris and I waited up front and were the first on the bus (which was early!), no screwing around this time! Back to the terminal, back to the lines to wait to check our bags again, wait to go through screening, wait to get loaded back on to the plane. 2pm we took off, 6pm we arrived, 7pm out of the airport, 8pm home, 10pm in bed!


    Needless to say we will not be flying Air Transat again!

    Please let me know if you have any questions!!

    If you have not decided on a resort in Punta Cana yet (or anywhere for that matter) I cannot stress how perfect this resort was for us!!

    #2 Debs

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      Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:08 AM

      I have more pictures from the resort posted here: (click on the bed!)

      Click the image to open in full size.

      Not many pictures from the wedding /reception yet, waiting on the photog!

      #3 ACDCDCAC

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      Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:09 AM

      great review! now where are the weddin' pics lady!!

      i love how you did the first dance alone on your balcony, that is SO sweet and romantic!

      #4 Kat81

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        Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:12 AM

        Sounds amazing... but where are the pics of the vacation?!

        #5 LadyCheese

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          Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:19 AM

          great review, sounds like it was a beautiful time. cant wait to see some of your pro pics! which hotel had the roaches on the bed?? eeek.

          #6 alex

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            Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:20 AM

            Sounds amazing!!
            Need more pics!!!!

            #7 Debs

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              Posted 10 May 2008 - 11:47 AM

              Quote:
              Originally Posted by LadyCheese
              great review, sounds like it was a beautiful time. cant wait to see some of your pro pics! which hotel had the roaches on the bed?? eeek.
              The hotel was the Barcelo Premium! Crazy I know! This resort was beautiful on the outside, but really run down on the inside, you know, old looking.

              #8 LadyCheese

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                Posted 10 May 2008 - 12:01 PM

                Quote:
                Originally Posted by Debs
                The hotel was the Barcelo Premium! Crazy I know! This resort was beautiful on the outside, but really run down on the inside, you know, old looking.
                wow!!! its unfortunate that your trip back home was a nightmare esp. when all you want to do is get home already...but at least everything else was very nice!

                #9 FYB87

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                  Posted 10 May 2008 - 12:47 PM

                  Sounds like everything was pretty amazing for the most part. Congratulations and I can't wait to see the pics. We still haven't picked a resort yet. So seeing the pics will be helpful!

                  #10 Debs

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                    Posted 10 May 2008 - 12:53 PM

                    If you have not made your decision yet, I would TOTALLY recommend it!!

                    (on my second post, click on the pic of the bed, it will go to my webshots page with more pics!!)




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