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Taradactyle's Dreams Los Cabos Wedding Review!!

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#1 Taradactyle

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    Posted 16 November 2008 - 02:47 AM

    Alaska Air – Grade A: We flew Alaska Air from San Francisco International Airport both ways. The flights were all on time and the service was friendly. Overall, uneventful flights, which I guess means it went well!!

    SJD Immigration / Customs – Grade F: We had to pay the customs guy $150 because he was threatening to confiscate all our stuff because we didn’t have receipts. When Patrick told him that was BS the guy said he’d do us a “favor” and charge us only $150 instead of $200. We had 6 pieces of luggage total (5 suitcases and 1 big box). Ugh!!

    Transcabo - Grade A: We hired Transcabo to pick us and some other guests up at the airport. Other guests used them to return to the airport as well. They were on time and came in clean, up to date vehicles with nice, cool air conditioning. We hired a suburban to pick us up when we arrived because we knew we'd have a ton of stuff. When we exited the airport, our driver was quickly identifiable, holding a sign with our name and a "Transcabo" shirt. He was also very friendly, quick to help, and quickly assured us that we could now sit back and relax. Would definitely recommend them!

    Baja Weddings (April) - Grade A+++: I can't begin to express how lucky we are that we had April's help. She treated the wedding as if it were her very own and she put all her heart, mind, soul, and energy into making our wedding everything that we hoped it to be. Patrick and I had hired another coordinator initially and sadly things did not work out with her. One month before the wedding, we let the original coordinator go because we still weren't getting timely responses to our inquires (at one point 2+ months!), and we still hadn't received updated confirmation sheets for months. That’s just the tip of it. Long story short, we were sick of being ignored, even when it was crunch time, so we asked April to step in at the last minute, even though the wedding was only about 1 month away. Within the span of 1 or 2 weeks, April had everything confirmed and I never doubted that a detail that I mentioned slipped past her. The longest I waited for a response was two days, even though I knew she was busy with other weddings. Most of all, April was always enthusiastic and had a huge, warm smile for us. Her upbeat personality was so much fun to work with. As Patrick put it, he had not seen me so relaxed until after April stepped in to help us. To us, that is the mark of an AWESOME coordinator. April really helped us pull off an amazing and beautiful wedding. Highly, highly recommend her!

    Dreams Resort Coordinator (Yarai) - Grade A+: We started working with Yarai in around February 2008. I was initially concerned because she was new and it seemed like other brides were using a different Dreams coordinator. In the end, we both really, really loved working with Yarai because she never seemed to forget anything we told her and she has this very relaxed and calm personality. There were a few times when the email responses took about one week (totally understandable given the number of weddings she has!), but otherwise her responses were very prompt and she kindly answered all of my neurotic questions and assured me that I could ask as many as I wanted. She was also very accommodating with our requests. She worked well with April to make sure that the staff were where they needed to be and that Dreams provided everything that we needed for the set up. Yarai also helped us secure the Portofino restaurant for our welcome dinner and made sure that everything looked beautiful. We'll miss working with Yarai and are so glad she was our Dreams coordinator!

    Dreams Resort (Moises) – Grade A+: Moises was the bar tender at Rendezvous Lounge. He really made sure our guests were having a great time throughout the week and was very attentive to everyone. Look for him if you’re there anytime soon!

    Dreams Resort (Overall) - Grade A: We love Dreams! We've stayed at a number of resorts in Los Cabos, including the Sheraton, Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach, and Cabo Azul. While the other resorts were architecturally more impressive, Dreams is still of one our favorites because the overall atmosphere is so much fun and the staff is super friendly. Dreams was perfect because the resort is not too big, so it helped keep our group of about 60 people pretty close together. There were a few complaints from a few pickier guests that the food wasn’t good, but meanwhile other guests raved about the food, especially the ceviche and the BBQ chicken burritos. For Patrick and me, the food was ok—admittedly it’s not the best food we’ve ever had but given that it's an all-inclusive, we thought it was still tasty and worth the money. One drawback is that their bars close too early. The lobby bar closed at around 11:00 p.m. each night, but even that worked out because our guests just headed over to the night club at Dreams, "Desires," which is open until about 1:00 or so. We decided that when we come back to Cabo, we'll definitely come back to Dreams for at least part of the trip!

    Guitarist for Ceremony - Grade A: I honestly only heard him play for part of the processional and the recessional, but from what Patrick tells me, he was good before then as well. We simply asked that he play something Mexican, nothing specific. From what I did hear, I loved. It was very romantic and appropriate. I have no idea what his name was though.

    Cabo Flowers - Grade A-/B+: The centerpieces for stunning and I LOVED them. For that, I'd give them an "A+." But a few things were off. For one, the flower girl had picked up her pomander and taken about five steps outside the suite when the whole thing fell apart. I heard everyone gasp and when I turned around, there was one very cute flower girl holding nothing but a ribbon and green sphere, with all the flowers on the ground. She looked very sad but at the same time, I just had to laugh at the situation. Another thing was that my bouquet was not exactly as I expected it. A few places, some of the roses were not well-distributed (about four roses were awkwardly clumped together in one place) and while I had requested open blooms, the roses were closed buds. There were also a few things that weren’t exactly what I had requested. I had requested dark pink cymbidium orchids on the cake, but they were a mixture of green cymbidiums with a few pink ones. Also, I had requested specific arrangements for the bar and guest book table (orchids) but ended up white calla lilies. Still, I’m giving them an A-/B+ because for one, I understand that the flower availability is limited in Cabo, and second, the florist had only a few weeks to be informed of our order and work on it so she may not have had the requisite time to get all the flowers she needed. All in all, the most important part of the flower order was the centerpieces and I LOVED those. (And yes, true to Asian weddings, some of my guests tried to walk off with the centerpieces even before the wedding had completely ended!)

    Lily Rose Photography (Debbie Norman) – Grade A+: I brought Debbie and Rob with me from California. They really worked their tails off this weekend!! They photographed our welcome dinner, part of the rehearsal, the reception, and also did a shoot for us in San Jose del Cabo the next day. We also got their photo booth package. It was a hit with the guests who really got into using the props we had brought. We ended up with over 6,000 photos taken. One of them was always with us to make sure they didn't miss a shot. More than anything, Debbie and Rob are truly passionate about what they do and have a great eye. Also, when my throat started hurting before the wedding, Debbie slipped out to buy some throat drops and discretely handed them to me. As she put it, she needs us to be happy and feel well so it'll show in the pictures!

    Pashminas from Downtown LA – Grade A: I bought about 32 pashminas from Los Angeles’ fashion district (around Santee Alley). I can’t remember the store name, but there are tons of shops that carry these. I bargained them down to about $4 each. When I asked around, I was getting initial pricing at around $5 to $7. I would not pay more than $4.50 each. The sizes were the nice full-size ones that you can wrap around your whole upper body and they were a HUGE hit with the guests. Maybe too much so. Some guests (ahem!!) took more than 1 pashmina (Leia, I feel you!!). I know this because my own mom didn’t even get one, even though I had bought more than enough pashminas for each female guest. Ugh!

    Suzanne Morel – Grade A-: I had my and bridesmaids’ hair and makeup done. Everyone came out beautiful and Suzanne’s girls really listened to what each girl wanted. I did have some problems with my eye makeup, but I think it was more due to a language barrier. I ended up taking the brush and demonstrating what I wanted and after that point, it was ok. As for hair, they really know how to do hair for beach weddings!! It was windy outside but my hair did not move out of place all night. I gently slept on my hair so that I could preserve it for the next day’s photo shoot in San Jose, and I was amazed to wake up and see that it looked exactly the same as the night before. AMAZING. A few things that bothered me though is that I had requested that some of my bridesmaids and I be put into two separate rooms. Suzanne told me over the phone this would not be a problem. She also told me at the trial this would be ok. On the morning of the wedding though she told me this would really slow them down and suggested that I just get ready in the bedroom itself, with everyone else outside. I declined because I felt it would be awkward and in the end, I was glad that I stayed with my girls because they really helped keep me sane. The other thing is that I had originally paid to have Suzanne style my grandmother’s hair, but due to flight changes, my grandmother ended up arriving a few hours before the wedding (too late to get her hair done). So we requested that instead we substitute in my aunt for my grandmother, since I had already paid for the service. She insisted that she would have to charge extra for my aunt’s hair because it was considered “medium” length, while my grandmother’s was “short” hair. I understand that she just wanted to make sure she got paid for whatever service her employees are providing, but given that I had already paid for hair and makeup for 5 bridesmaids, hair and makeup for myself, a hair and makeup trial, styling for mother, and styling for my grandmother, I didn’t feel this was too much to ask. In the end we substituted my grandmother’s styling with my manicure / pedicure, which was similarly priced. Still, I was a little annoyed.

    Cabo Dolphins – Grade B+: During our honeymoon, we did the swim with dolphins activity which cost us about $90/person for 45 minutes. The dolphin experience itself was great—we got to kiss the dolphin, get her to do tricks, and even got to hang onto their dorsal fin and swim with her. I recommend wearing a one piece if you do this though. I almost lost my bikini bottom because we were swimming so fast. The only reason I give them a B+ is because the pictures cost so much. I think we paid around $140 for a CD of only about 12-14 pictures. Highway robbery.

    Cabo Azul – Grade B+/A-: We stayed here for our honeymoon and seriously, this is one really, really beautiful resort. The service is amazing and some of the concierge and bellhops remembered our names throughout our stay (“Hola Senora Kim!”). The rooms have motion sensors, separate Jacuzzi tubs, and top of the line stainless steel appliances in the kitchen. Even the microwave oven has automatic sensors that adjust according to whatever you’re heating up. The kitchen tools are all Oxo Good Grips brand and the cupboards are nicely stocked with wine glasses, glass mixing bowls, etc. If I could go back and stay there again, I’d take a trip to Costco to stock up the fridge early on because the on-site market is really, really, really expensive. The cheapest wine we found was Yellow Tail and it cost us $16. The mini toothpaste was selling for $8. But if you are getting married here, WOW you are lucky! The chapel is AMAZING, with a cross that drops down from the ceiling and torches on the side walls. We got side-by-side massages in the resort’s spa, which is likewise breathtaking with gorgeous water features and a Eucalyptus steam room. Still, I give them a B+/A- instead of an A because (1) the market prices were a rip off; (2) there was a roach in the bathroom sink one night; (3) there was a dead roach on the patio that stayed there for a few days; (4) the Jacuzzi tub wasn’t working; and (5) some annoying mood music starts up every morning at 7:00 a.m. Even though the music is outside, we could hear it from our room because one of the speakers was right next to our patio. Service-wise though the resort gets an A++.
    Tara & Patrick

    Our Non-Pro Pics: http://bestdestinati...om/forum/t32280

    #2 KHarrod

    • Member
    • 902 posts

      Posted 16 November 2008 - 03:13 AM

      Great review,congrats!!!!!!!! Cant wait to see the pics.

      #3 Kathie

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        Posted 16 November 2008 - 03:21 AM

        Great review Tara. Thanks!

        #4 Anna83

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          Posted 16 November 2008 - 10:24 AM

          Congratulations! Great review, can't wait to see your pics!

          #5 kerryjbrown

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            Posted 16 November 2008 - 10:49 AM

            Congratulations! Sounds great, can't wait to see the pics! I am heading back to the garment district for more silk for my linens, I will try to find Santee Alley so I can get Pash's as well!. Thanks for hte info

            #6 TammyWright


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            Posted 16 November 2008 - 01:13 PM

            great review tara. i feel the same way about dreams...it isnt the fanciest resort in cabo but so fun and so perfect for a group event.

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            #7 Leia78

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              Posted 16 November 2008 - 07:33 PM

              Hi Tara! Great review...where's your pics

              #8 Jess

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                Posted 16 November 2008 - 07:47 PM

                Great review! Can't wait for pictures :)

                #9 Erika J

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                  Posted 17 November 2008 - 02:55 AM

                  Great review. Thank you for sharing!

                  #10 marise

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                    Posted 17 November 2008 - 07:33 AM

                    Congratulations Tara! Awesome review, thanks!

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