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Valentin Imperial Maya Brides?


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#751 ChelsH

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    Posted 17 May 2011 - 12:11 PM

    Beautiful pics Ahollo!  I love your TTD.  It's a little over 4 months until our wedding at the VIM so I will prob have a bunch of questions for you soon!  



    #752 ahollo02

    ahollo02
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      Posted 17 May 2011 - 04:30 PM

      I am here to answer any questions!!!!



      #753 JBean

      JBean
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        Posted 17 May 2011 - 07:18 PM

        Gorgeous pics! Looks like you had an amazing day. 

         

        Any insider tips???
         

        Originally Posted by ahollo02 

        I am here to answer any questions!!!!



         


        Brad & Janine - November 10th, 2011.
        Valentin Imperial Maya, Riviera Maya
        Bride & Groom + 29


        #754 heidilynn28

        heidilynn28
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          Posted 18 May 2011 - 04:16 PM

          Beautiful!!! I'm getting excited!! 5.5 weeks to go :)

          What went on with the cake? You gave the WC a picture and they did it? Was it 3 milks? Worth it?

           

          What package did you have again? Was the centerpiece for the table included?

          Anything you want to warn us about? How was the hairstylist? How's the weather? Crazy hot? humid?

           

          Ahhhh I'm going nuts.. I'll start with that... thanks!! :)



          #755 ahollo02

          ahollo02
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            Posted 20 May 2011 - 06:05 AM

            My fiance proposed to me 2 years ago. And we have always wanted to do a destination wedding. So planning it has been a couple year process. We decided on Riviera Maya because we have been to the area before and loved it. We chose the Valentin based on reviews (tripadvisor and bestdestinationwedding.com), travel cost, resort amenities, and wedding package options. Believe me, I had a long list of places and it took me a year to narrow it down. My top picks were Secrets Maroma Beach, VIM, and The Royal Playa Del Carmen. I like VIM because they do one wedding a day where other resorts pop out a couple a day. That just seems impersonal to me. So, VIM it was.

             

            DELTA

             

            We flew Delta because they had non stop flights and we did not have to pay for our carry-on our checked luggage. A huge plus in my book. We booked our entire trip 9 months in advance. Delta changed our flight times to and from twice. This was stressful as we were traveling with my parents and brother. I wanted to make sure that we were all sitting together and on the same flight.. that is why I booked it so early. With Delta changing our itinerary twice, our assigned and confirmed seats got unassigned. This made me soooooo mad!! Calling Delta to see if they could help was a joke. I felt like I was dealing with the CIA. The representative could neither confirm nor deny anything. Ahh.

             

            Now onto boarding with the wedding dress.....

            I read several places including the Delta website that you should call the airline ahead of time to ensure they have room in their captains closet or first class closet for the dress. Well, again, calling Delta was a waste of time since they told me they could not guarantee anything and I should be prepared to make sure my dress fit into my carry on bag just in case they needed me to put it in there. REALLY?! They might want me to stuff my wedding dress into a carry-on bag? I just laughed it off. I mean come on. Getting on the flight, they could not put my dress in the closet. Grrr. It was already packed with captain and stewardess stuff. But I was already in vacation mode and relaxed so I just laid it on top of other peoples carry ons in the over head bin. No biggie.

             

            VALENTIN IMPERIAL MAYA

             

            We booked our trip though orbitz 9 months in advance. I reserved and put a down payment on the wedding package a year in advance. At that point, VIM was ranked #6 in hotels in Playa by tripadvisor. But as time went on, the number went down and bad reviews trickled in. I got VERY nervous to say the least. In my mind, I chose a wonderful resort for family and friends and now it is going down hill?? What will I say to may guests when they get to the resort and it is a dump after spending tons of money to get there?  Then onto of that, the resort switched owners and lobster was taken away and now there is this privileged package?? What???  I was upset because I picked the resort years ago based on amenities the resort offered. Now all of a sudden they were taken away or put into a higher cost privileged package. I was not happy. But life goes on.

             

            A few months ago I found the VIM facebook fan page. It was very helpful and reassuring to find positive feedback on the resort from people that you know for sure went! I also learned that tripadvisor was for the birds! It is full of fake reviews by other hotels or crummy snotty people. Tripadvisor used to be a great go-to-place to find honest information. Not so much anymore. And that it a shame.

             

            We arrived at VIM on May 7th. We were greeted with drinks and cold yummy smelling towels. They of course said 'welcome home' like the FB page said they would. The men at the front that greeted us were very warm and nice. They showed us to the front lobby and stood with us until we could check in (like 5 min). Check in was a breeze. We were given maps of the grounds along with a daily activity sheet.

             

            We were all in silver suites. They upgraded me to a golden suite because we were getting married. Top floor, room 7301, partial ocean view! I took it!! Building 6 goldens were being renovated while we were there. Building 6 was more centrally located but no biggie. My day and brother payed for room upgrades to have a golden swimout. It was $50USD a day. Not bad! I would recommend them! Amazing to have a pool outside your room especially for my parents who have bad knees and trouble walking to other pools.

             

            The resort is beautiful!! I have absolutely no complaints about anything. I only got 2 bug bites but had benadryol cream so no biggie. The themed nights were fun. Hibachi was awesome!!! Sushi was yummy. We caught the fire show and Micheal Jackson show and both were worth watching.

             

            I would have no hesitation to recommend this resort to anyone wanting to stay there!! Great mix of age groups. The main pool was great if you wanted to party. The Golden pool was nice and quiet and lazy. That is were we spent most of our time!!

             

            WEDDING COORDINATOR

             

            I was assigned Ariadna. She took over the weddings when Lupita left I believe. Ariadna was nothing but helpful, kind, reassuring, and hard working. I had this image of her in my head of being an older woman. No idea why!! After contacting her for over a year, we squared away most of the wedding details via email. She sent me catalogs to pick my cake and flowers. I sent her a list of my wedding guests 2 weeks before hand so she could add in the 15% spa discount and arrange rooms to be by each other.

             

            We met with Ariadna right after check in to go over everything and make sure the details were right. She came out to the lobby and greeted us with a huge warm hug and a bright smile. She is young and oh so petite!! She is sooooo cute and warm. She reviewed the info with us. We dropped off our wedding decorations that we brought (chair bows and wedding favors) along with my ipod that had a playlist of the songs I wanted people to walk down the aisle to.

             

            WEDDING

             

            Wedding was at 5:30 so I spent some time poolside then headed to my hair appointment at the spa at 1:30. I requested Itzel to do my hair based on other reviews. I'm not sure if there are other ladies that do hair or if it is just Itzel but Itzel is who I received!!! She was very nice. She asked if I had any ideas which I did and brought pictures. I also has a custom made flower from etsy (http://www.etsy.com/...?ref=ls_profile ) that I wanted her to incorporate. She painted my nails then   got to work on my hair. The whole appointment was about an hour and a half. And she did an amazing job. I was pleased and felt like a million bucks. I was going for something modern but elegant and I believe she captured that.

             

            I did my own makeup after back at the room then ordered room service while waiting for my bridesmaids and the photographer to arrive.

             

            We took pictures getting ready and getting dressed then jumped into a golf cart and headed down to the beach. The weddings are held between building 11-12. this part of the beach is more private because of the rocks. Most people do not want to go over there. Which was fine by me. Ariadna met us in front of building 11 with my flowers and my dads boutonniere. My fiance did not want to wear one so I gave it to my dad.

             

            The ceremony went off without a hitch. We emailed Kiko before hand with the ceremony we wanted to use and he had no problems. He said a prayer that was not included in the ceremony but I thought that was nice. Champagne toast followed the ceremony. We also did speeches at this point too because we were not having a formal reception.. just dinner. The microphone and speakers were provided and needed.

             

            After the ceremony, the guests were taken to the Mexican restaurant while we took pictures on the beach. Our cake was there at the restaurant displayed on a frozen slab with a sever. The centerpiece from the ceremony table was brought in and placed at our table for dinner. Dinner was fabulous. the manager came out and brought us a bazillion appetizers to share. Then we ordered what we wanted off the menu. It was a great time and everything went wonderful.

             

            After dinner we headed to the plaza from drinks and dancing!

             

            SAMUEL LUNA PHOTOGRAPHY

             

            There is a 10 week wait on pictures so I can not comment yet on the photos.

             

            Sam and Elizabeth were wonderful to work with. Very quick to respond to my emails. There was a signed contract that protected me and him. I liked that. We chose the 3 hour package for $1300USD. that package was perfect for us since we were not having a formal reception.

             

            I chose Sam based on his photo journalism style. He was very laid back and I hardly noticed him or Elizabeth. We had my maid of honors husband meet Sam in the lobby then bring him to my room. Sam was 15 min early which I appreciated. He got right to work, photographing the rings, my dress, various people on the room. Then he took off to go shoot the boys and Elizabeth stayed with me. She took pictures of us getting ready and putting the dress on. Elizabeth was from Canada and come in for a few months to shoot weddings. I thought that was interesting!

             

            Sam and Elizabeth both shoot the wedding and photos after and me and my hubby. It was nice having 2 photographers. They were both at different angles and it will be nice to see the unique style of them both show up in the photos.

             

            I know doing research to be leery of photographers that get you your pictures back in a couple days. It is better to a photographer take their time and go through the pictures and spend time touching up the photos. I can not wait to see the finished album!!!

             

            BLUE LENS CARIBE

             

            Here is a link to some of my TTD pictures with Blue Lense (http://www.bestdesti...be#post_1603132 )

             

            I started out not wanting to do a TTD. I really did not want to haul my dress all the way to Mexico, through the airport and security and then destroy it. But the week before we left I changed my mind. I did not want to regret not doing it. It is a once in a life time thing and something that goes hand in hand with a destination wedding.

             

            So I contacted BBC because they have a contract though my resort (Valentin Imperial Maya) and I would not have to pay a day pass fee to use them. So it would be easy. Ashley emailed me back right away and said that I could put $100 down and that would go toward pictures. Pictures would be $10 per picture and $15 per touched up pic. I was happy with that because I did not have to buy a package.

             

            We scheduled the TTD for the day after the wedding at 11:30am. We met our photographer in the lobby and he gave us the impression that we were late.. saying "oh there you are". He seemed irritated. We were about 5 min early. He was very nice but hard to understand. He had a very thick accent and talked really fast. He gave us direction but like I said, was hard to understand with the beach wind, water, and his accent. He seemed to be irritated that we were having a hard time following. For the most part, we did our own posing. He kept calling me 'big boss' and my husband 'boss'. I did not like that. To me, it was that he couldn't remember our names. It just rubbed me the wrong way.

             

            We took pictures in the ocean and in the pool. The whole photoshoot took about an hour. My husband and I had fun but we did not realize how hard and tiring it would be!! That dress gets heavy when wet!! I think we had so much fun because everytime we tried to pose, the ocean would crash down on us and take us away or we would just laugh at the photographer that was getting increasingly irritated with us for not doing the right thing.

             

            At the end, he told us that he would meet us in the lobby in 2 days at 10am to review the pictures.  We got a phone call from Ashley saying that she would have to reschedule and she could meet us that day. But we did not get back to the room to get the message until late. So we rescheduled the time for 5pm the next day. No biggie!

             

            We met Ashley in the lobby. She showed us our pictures on a big Mac screen. She showed us the 50 touched-up pictures first. Then showed us a couple of the 250 other non touched up pictures. then she pulled up a pricing list of packages to but pictures. She then gave us a couple minutes to discuss what we wanted to do. We liked the pictures and after all the work we wanted them all. But to buy them all it would be $900. So, for 1 hour of work and all pictures (only 50 touched up) it was $900. That seems a lot to me. We had Samuel Luna for our actual wedding and for 3 hours, all pictures touched up it was only $1300. He haggled with Ashley and got the price down to $750. So we owed her $650 after the $100 down payment.

             

            I felt very rushed with Ashley. She said she would rather us pay cash then go back to the room and get our credit card. But I don't carry that much money!!! She was not very warm and helpful. she was very matter-of-fact. I would have liked to go through the pictures and pick which ones we wanted but she didn't really present that as an option.

             

            We received our pictures on CD. After going though them at home, I really only liked about 150 of them. The pictures were really good and we received tons of compliments on them!! But most of the poses were straight from their website. Nothing different. Nothing unique. Very posed.

             

            Would I recommend them? Prob not. Was I happy with the pictures? Yes. But I wasn't a fan of the photographer or of the selling part after. I should have payed a day pass and got Sasha Gluck to come in or have Ivan Luckie. The prices are comparable and I'm sure Sasha or Ivan would have had more unique pictures. 

             

             

             

             

             

             



            #756 JBean

            JBean
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            • 429 posts

              Posted 20 May 2011 - 11:10 AM

              Wow! What an amazing review!! Thank you for taking the time to do that - I think it will be very helpful. It answered a lot of questions I had.

               

              Blue Lens Caribe photography comes with our package - but I splurged and hired Juan Navarro (Sasha Gluck was my first choice, too but he was booked for our day). After reading your review, I'm SO glad I hired outside.

               

              Thanks again!!


              Brad & Janine - November 10th, 2011.
              Valentin Imperial Maya, Riviera Maya
              Bride & Groom + 29


              #757 ahollo02

              ahollo02
              • Jr. Member
              • 296 posts

                Posted 20 May 2011 - 03:00 PM



                 

                Originally Posted by heidilynn28 

                Beautiful!!! I'm getting excited!! 5.5 weeks to go :)

                What went on with the cake? You gave the WC a picture and they did it? Was it 3 milks? Worth it?

                 

                What package did you have again? Was the centerpiece for the table included?

                Anything you want to warn us about? How was the hairstylist? How's the weather? Crazy hot? humid?

                 

                Ahhhh I'm going nuts.. I'll start with that... thanks!! :)



                Thank you!! Those 5 weeks will go by so fast!!

                 

                We had the moonlight package and the centerpiece was included. I told her what one I wanted and said I wanted pink and orange flowers. the centerpiece for the ceremony was the same centerpiece they brought in for the reception table. Be careful if you have a centerpiece with lilies.. they did not cut off the orange things that satin clothes!!!!

                 

                The hairstylist was fab!! I was honestly very worried before hand. I didn't want a test run wither because that was another $60 or so! But after the 15% off and my $75 spa credit from Orbitz, my hair and nails were only like $40 or something. Which we payed in cash when we checked out. Well worth it. I suggest at least taking a picture with you for an idea. The nail polish there was OPI brand.

                 

                It was 91 degrees the day we got married. Sun was full on. Made for good lighting in the pictures!! But you are right by the ocean and the breeze is outstanding! i was not hot or sweaty at all!! My hubby was afterward but he was out there a lot longer than I was and he sweats at the drop of a dime anyway!! The wind and humidity for the hair was fine. my hair frizzes up super easily but Itzel used Paul Mitchell hairspray and really good products and everything was fine!!



                #758 ahollo02

                ahollo02
                • Jr. Member
                • 296 posts

                  Posted 21 May 2011 - 03:10 AM



                   

                  Originally Posted by JBean 

                  Wow! What an amazing review!! Thank you for taking the time to do that - I think it will be very helpful. It answered a lot of questions I had.

                   

                  Blue Lens Caribe photography comes with our package - but I splurged and hired Juan Navarro (Sasha Gluck was my first choice, too but he was booked for our day). After reading your review, I'm SO glad I hired outside.

                   

                  Thanks again!!



                  I'm glad my review was helpful!!

                   

                  We really liked some of our BLC pictures and the experience was fun! But the people who work for BLC just rubbed me the wrong way!! Dont they know you should never call a girl 'big' anything!! Come on! lol

                   

                  What are you going to use BLC for?



                  #759 JBean

                  JBean
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                  • 429 posts

                    Posted 21 May 2011 - 01:30 PM

                    Haha, ya no kidding! It bothers me to spend that much on a photog and they can't even bother to learn your names!!  We're not going to do a TTD so I think we'll just use BLC as backup for the wedding - we only have Juan for 3 hours, so I think we'll use BLC to capture more of the later reception. 
                     

                    Originally Posted by ahollo02 



                     



                    I'm glad my review was helpful!!

                     

                    We really liked some of our BLC pictures and the experience was fun! But the people who work for BLC just rubbed me the wrong way!! Dont they know you should never call a girl 'big' anything!! Come on! lol

                     

                    What are you going to use BLC for?



                     


                    Brad & Janine - November 10th, 2011.
                    Valentin Imperial Maya, Riviera Maya
                    Bride & Groom + 29


                    #760 Ali2420

                    Ali2420
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                    • 6 posts

                      Posted 09 June 2011 - 03:08 AM

                      Hi everyone! I'm new to this forum. Getting married at Valentin Imperial Maya on October 22, 2011! 

                       

                      I wanted to introduce myself to the group. My name is Ali and I'm from Atlanta.

                       

                      My fiance and I just got back from our site visit and everything exceeded our expectations. The only thing I was bummed about is that they would not comp. us a room even for one night. So, we hotwired a room in Cancun (so glad we're not getting married in Cancun).

                       

                      Veronica will be our coordinator, but we were given a tour by Ana. She answered every question that I had. The resort itself is gorgeous. Very traditional mexican hacienda style. The walkways and gardens make for an excellent setting. We chose the Unforgettable Package and are getting married on the beach, cocktail hour in the gazebo and our reception on the Mexican fountain patio. We've got 42 guests booked so far and am hoping to get to 45 to do the patio area.

                       

                      The beach is absolutely incredible and very private. It's quite a bit windy and Ana said they don't recommend a vail for the ceremony. I'm planning on having my hair done back with some flowers too, so that its not blowing in my face the whole time. You can pay extra for the wood structure thing to get married under, but the beach is beautiful enough in my opinion. The gazebo is also a lovely location. We decided to have our cocktail party there. The fountain patio is awesome. It's really set off from the rest of the resort and creates a lot of privacy. It's basically a circle with four pie pieces that have small fountains in them. They will turn off two of them, have six tables of seven or eight set up in one pie piece, and the other pie piece will have the dance floor and speakers. We are very particular about our music, so we decided to forgo the DJ in favor of a number of different playlists. The reception will be from 6-10. 

                       

                      We are not doing a special rehearsal dinner, figuring we could all go to a restaurant the night before. Ana said that would be fine, but the best places to do that are the Mexican restaurant or the Indonesian place at either 6pm or 9pm to beat the crowds.

                       

                      The plan B in the event of rain is ceremony in the chapel, cocktail party in the tea room, and reception at the Mexican restaurant, which they will close for us the day of. It can be a game time decision the day of the ceremony. I was particularly impressed by this. Ana has been there for 2 years and does this every weekend, so we were comforted by her experience level.

                       

                      When I returned from my trip, Veronica emailed me a summary of all of the things Ana and I talked about and my selections. All in all, they were extremely professional and put my mind at ease. I definitely think that part of the reason for having a destination wedding is that you don't have to sweat all the details. I've heard some horror stories where people have said that is not true, but VIM really made me feel that that will definitely be the case.

                       

                      I appreciate all of your contributions-- they have been so helpful! I'll be keeping you all posted on the process. Message me if you want to see the pics from our site visit.

                       

                       






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