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@@Barcelo2016 - We are doing the lighting on the palm trees ... I think they charge like 5.00 per tree, and the pics I've seen look awesome. I wouldn't bother with bringing your own. You have lots of other things to worry about packing!! :)

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@@Barcelo2016 @@TaraW

Wowzers...I did not even know that was an option :D  What phase of planning does that come in?  Our ceremony is at 6:00pm, so having the trees lit would be amazing!

 

On a side note, my WC is Abraham and he seems great, except for his response time.  The last emailed or communication I received from him was January 16th.  What have you all found to be the "normal" turnaround time for responses?  I have been around this forum enough to know that they do take some time but I feel that 3 weeks is a bit extreme!!

 

Also, how have you all kept your ideas, visions, etc., organized so you can remember everything? LOL  I have Pinterest board, I have a binder, I have this forum, etc., but I can't seem to get everything together so that I can truly plan things out.

 

Thanks for the insight ladies

Edited by KirstenChrisDW2016

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@@KirstenChrisDW2016 Abraham is my WC too and I haven't heard from him after emailing him twice; once in early January and once this week :mellow:  I have time, so I'm not tripping out yet, but it's a little nerve wracking.

 

As for organizing, I keep everything on my laptop in folders and I have a Pinterest board. I made a budget in Excel with each category as a sheet, then made a master sheet which pulls figures from each of the categorized sheets and gives me overall figures in USD and estimated CAD. I have a Word document that is essentially a "dump" document; categories and pictures of what I like. I also have an Excel document of my various to-do lists; packing lists for each of our checked bags and carry-ons, stuff to buy or do specifically related to the wedding, things I need to buy for the kids, etc.

 

I feel unorganized because I haven't received any answers to my questions from the W/C so I feel like not very much is set in stone and booked.

 

Wow, at $5.00 per tree, it definitely makes sense to just book with them and save the luggage space!

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Hello Barcelo Maya brides!

 

I'm new to this forum, but would like to say that my fiancé and I have recently been to Barcelo Maya Beach resort (over MLK weekend actually) and after doing months of research, we picked this as our wedding venue :D. Our wedding sales contact is Christian, and the person with whom we toured the resort with was Abraham (one of the many wedding coordinators). Since we haven't secured our wedding date yet (it's just on hold right now), we haven't been assigned a wedding coordinator yet. 

 

Some notes for future brides:

  • Photographer: yes, you can have an external photographer, but you have to pay a ridiculous $500 external vendor fee (I believe this is only for photographers though; the external vendor fee changes depending what type of vendor comes in, and I want to say that it's the most expensive for photographers)
  • Ceremony - gorgeous white gazebo is not completely private since there is a walkway behind it. I don't think it'll be too bad though, since the gazebo itself is perched atop a couple of steps higher than that walkway. I posted photos of this in my  gallery
  • Package: Mint Breeze! Unlike a lot of brides, I don't care too much for the sand between my toes as I walk down the aisle..plus, I live in a beach city (San Diego). I did want an ocean view, and Barcelo's gazebo provides that for sure! For future brides, be aware that Mint Breeze does NOT come with a cocktail hour, but it does come with a private, 3-hour dinner reception with open bar, in a ballroom... 

..which brings me to my question: does anyone know how much they charge for an additional reception hour? My fiancé and I are wondering if having a cocktail hour is more cost-friendly than just adding an additional reception hour. Any thoughts?

 

Good luck planning!

Edited by keemmo

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@@keemmo

Welcome to the forum!! :)

 

I have also been to Barceló (2 years ago for two weeks) so we were familiar with the property when we booked the wedding. It's so beautiful there, has one of the best beaches in the area in my opinion and I have no doubt that all of our weddings will be magical there! So great choice!  :)

 

I think most of the brides on here are prepared to pay the photographer vendor fee based on the reviews of the hotel photographer. I recall one bride posted how they actually showed up late to the ceremony and so they missed a lot of it! (because apparently the judge will NOT wait to start the ceremony regardless of who is or isn't there  - yikes!) others worry that there is limited (if any) online info to even find out more about the photographers or see examples of their work, others have said they were disappointed overall with their photos. Personally I'm not willing to risk it with the photographs because we will only get one chance, so it's a worth while expense for us. You do have the option of booking your photographer two nights at the resort in lieu of the fee, which is costing us 425.00 (the farther out you book it, the cheaper it is! And if your photographer has an assistant, make sure you book it for 2 people). Since the photographer will only need the wrist band, that also gives us an extra room for a few days for guests, for people to use if they are staying at other resorts, for an extra place to get ready for the guys, etc.  My photographer is also giving us an extra hour of time to help offset for the vendor fee (check out playaweddings.com), which also helped with our decision. Every bride/groom are going to want different things, and some aren't too worried about photos. Our way isn't necessarily the best way, it's just what we have decided to do for some peace of mind on our day. (AND we fell in love with her photos and wanted her to capture or wedding day! :))   

 

Hint for those of you wanting to secure your wedding date without the huge financial commitment: Go to Barceló.com and book a room for your travel  dates. You simply give your credit card but nothing is charged until the day you arrive (trust me, I made reservations for 6 separate rooms last July using this method!) This gives you a reservation number that you can give your planner to secure the date/time/location.  If you travel on points this may be the best and cheapest way to do it anyhow. But if you are looking to purchase a travel package further down the road, you can simply update your wedding planner with the new reservation number and cancel the one on Barceló.com. Be careful you don't select the option that says "non-refundable". I've been keeping an eye on the barcelo.com prices over the months and every once in awhile a special comes up with a slightly cheaper price. But it's clearly marked non refundable and tells you how much your card will be charged before you hit submit, so you can't make a mistake.

 

We've decided against a cocktail hour and chosen to add time to the reception. (it's about 15.00 per person per hour) There are lots of bars around the resort and we made up a wedding day itinerary that directs everyone to the nearest location for a cocktail for the 90 min while we have our photos done. I've read over and over again how the 3 hour reception goes by quickly and brides wished they had more time. My thoughts is that between dinner, dessert, toasts, cake cutting, the first dance,  etc you have eaten up probably two hours or so and only have another hour to party, when you probably want at least one - two more depending on the size of the group and the make-up (lots of party animals coming??) . The good news is you can decide with a minimum of one hour notice if you want to extend your reception, but you have to let your planner know at least one hour before the scheduled end time (i.e. - If it's scheduled to end at 11:00pm then let them know before 10:00pm if it's that you want to go until 12:00am) 


@KirstenChrisDW2016  It wasn't in any specific planning phase that I recall, I just asked about lighting options at Playa Azul, since both our wedding and reception will be there. Just ask your WC ! :)

Edited by TaraW

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@@TaraW

Thanks! That's great to know!

So I'm having a issue lately and it's with the Zika Virus. All my guests are freaking out, including my parents. I don't know how it will be a few months down the road but currently everyone wants to cancel. What is your ladies opinion on this and how are you dealing with it? Help!! ????

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@@Barcelo2016 - that's too bad :( that's a tough one. My bridesmaid is pregnant so there's a chance she won't be attending anymore because there's just not enough information out there for her Dr to make a recommendation to go or stay, and I don't blame her. Luckily most of my guests aren't pregnant so I'm not having too many issues. Some are planning on getting pregnant but the risk is minimized if you wait 6 months before trying to get pregnant after contracting the virus (although some say 2 years) For anyone else who isn't pregnant or isn't trying to be pregnant the Zika virus shouldn't be a big deal. When is your date and have many people paid already? My wedding is in April and I'm not changing anything because of the Zika virus - I'll super miss having my bridesmaid there but as they say the show must go on.

Edited by SammyMac

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I'm having similar problems between the virus and our Canadian dollar. We had 30 people initially invited as we wanted it just family and close friends, 20 were confirmed and now that's dropped off to 12 just in the last week (plus us!) Initially I was a bit sad about it, but when we planned this we said as long as it's my fiancée and my two (adult) children that are our best man and maid of honor, everyone else is a bonus. We really wanted a beach wedding in Mexico, costs and guests be damned!! haha! I do understand our friends that had plans to take their children on a vacation, the crappy dollar turned it into something they couldn't afford any longer and added at least 1000.00 to the costs. I totally get that.  So ...  in 9 weeks when we say "I Do" the group will be intimate, but we are having the wedding we want and that's what matters, because I'm not getting married again!!!!! :)  

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@@SammyMac

Oh ok. Yeah I don't know what to do. We are going there May 27, wedding date is June 1.

Both of my brother in laws are trying to start a family soon and they're really worried and my fiancé is also saying what if we end up having problems down the road as well. I feel like people will be really disappointed and upset if we go through with it. Even my parents are saying it's selfish to not care about other people's concerns. The most frustrating aspect is that no one really knows what the side effects of the virus are down the road. I think this makes it harder.

I did some research and apparently there's only 18 reported cases. Why did this have to happen now!?

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@Barcelo2016    I think you should do what YOU want to do. Respect people decisions not to come if they have concerns, totally understandable, but you get to decide what your wedding will be like and what you want to do. Personally I think it's the one time you are allowed to be selfish.

 

We travel to Mexico a lot and mosquitos or bugs of any kind have never been my problem when I'm on the beach. If we do excursions and go into the "jungle" areas to zipline, etc they are more visible, but I can't say I've ever been bitten because I use bug spray. I'm not lessening what people are going through or being exposed to, (it's terrible what's happening with these babies that have been infected and if I was pregnant I'd worry) I'm just saying it's never been an issue for us on previous vacations.

 

I don't think anyone would judge you if you guys went ahead with the wedding ...especially if that's what you are your hubby-to-be really want. But if you'd be just as happy getting married on a beach in say Tofino or something, then go with that option. But if not, then you already know what to do! :)

Edited by TaraW

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