I am finally ready to post my review! We have a fabulous time relaxing, basking in the sun and of course, getting married. Here is my review of the resort. (Borrowed the format from some others.) Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
Lovely! Everything about the resort was wonderful. Our flight ended up getting canceled the day we were supposed to come home, so they shipped us over to Dreams Resort. I saw a wedding there, which was beautiful, but am very happy with our choice of OCT. I would do it all over in a heartbeat. I donâ€™t think you will be disappointed.
I really loved the layout and decor of the rooms. It made for some great pictures on our wedding day. Comfy beds! Stocked fridge with waters and soda. The resort is very modern with bold colors and a Mexican feel. Some complained about the â€œmustyâ€ smell but I really think that is hard to avoid with the climate and amount of humidity entering the rooms. They were very clean and well taken care of. Some have double twin beds while others have King sized beds. Keep this in mind for your guests. Some of our married guests were given two twin beds. For the amount of time you will spend in your room- they were perfect.
Keep in mind I am a very â€œnon pickyâ€ eater! I thought the food was very good. When I traveled to the Dreams Resort- it was evident Dreams had better quality food, however, I was quite happy with the food at OCT.
Casa Del Mar: We ate the buffet breakfast every morning at Casa Del Mar. (The only breakfast available.) I loved it! They had everything imaginable. Kids choices too. Made to order eggs. Fresh fruit. (Mango and guava!) Pancakes/Waffles/ Cereal.
Dinners and lunches were great. They try to have a different dinner theme each night~ American, Mexican and so on. I could have ate there every day.
Italian Restaurant: We also ate at the Italian Restaurant for our romantic dinner. (I did not care for my meal- but my hubby loved his.) The Italian Restaurant has different menus for their outside guests than inside. I heard the outside salmon was delish. I would def. try it again.
The Score: We ate here once- food was good. Fries come with everything!
The Villa Marina: This is buffet style for lunch. It was very convenient and located near pools. They have a small selection, but nice if you want something small to hold you over for dinner. They also have dinners here, which you order from a menu. I had the Hawaiian Skewers! Yum!
* These are the only restaurants we visited. I wish I would have tried the Japanese one. Maybe next time!
There were three main pools that we were able to use during our stay. (1. Kidâ€™s pool. 2. Swim Up Bar Pool- Party Pool! 3.The main activity pool. The 4th is for Privilege only.) All three were great. The pools are spaced apart, which is nice. My husband! And I used the kidâ€™s pool often. It was the most quiet and relaxing. Everyday they had water aerobics, fun music, and games for children. Be aware everyone puts their towels down to hold a spot. The resort has signs saying not to, but everyone does. This makes it hard to find a spot at time. However, if you get down to the pool area by 9, you should be good.
The beaches were very calm. I loved the canopies! There was a lot of seaweed, but workers come by to remove it as much as possible. It did not bother me much. I did think I was going to see clear blue water! Instead, the water was murky. I was a little bummed but some days were more clear than others.
I will just say the people at OCT are by far the kindest, most hard working people I have ever met. They are so friendly and make you feel welcome and loved. Ha! Silly but true. (Not to keep comparing this to Dreams, but the staff there was SO unfriendly and not welcoming at all. Sorry to make such a harsh generalization- a few were nice, but nothing like OCT.) Some people said the staff goes above and beyond if you Privilege, but I did not find that. They were so nice to all of our guests.
Now the wedding! Just some background: I traveled with 13 of my family members. We had a very low-key and simple ceremony with a dinner reception. I did not bring any decor or extras. We did not hire a DJ or traditional wedding events. Feel free to ask me something unrelated to my wedding- I saw a few while I was there and may be able to help! We chose the Romantic package.
Meeting with Ana:
Ana is the best. She is very calm and reserved but listens to your requests and thoughtful before she responds to you. I met with her two days after I arrived. Our meeting took 20-30 minutes. We also met with the doctor for our blood work. (He was so kindâ€¦)
She showed me some pictures from a book and also used her computer to show me flowers, table set up, sashes and so onâ€¦ That day our 4 witnesses had to come to her office to sign paper work. She could not have done a better job.
I began getting ready at 1:15. My hair/make-up was scheduled at 2. (Ana arranged this for me at our meeting) I brought a few pictures of how I wanted my hair and make-up. Litzi (Who I thought was a man?? Some people say he is a she? LOL) Either was he/she was amazing. He/She far exceeded by expectations with hair and make-up. I would put your faith in Litzi. My make-up was flawless and my hair turned out great. The back did fall out a bit at the night went on. Bring bobby pins!
My mom and sister also had their hair done by Vicky. She did a great job too.
I got a mani/pedi the day before by Vicky. ($80 total.) Ana gave me 15% discount
My hair was around $84 and make-up $64 with the discount as well. My sister and mom also received discounts. It took about 45 minutes to do my hair and 15-20 for my make-up.
I chose pink and yellow roses, as well as white lilies and greens (Not sure what they were.) There is a picture hanging in her office wall of the bouquet I wanted. They were so pretty! I also was given a similar centerpiece for our wedding ceremony, which they brought to our dinner as well. I ordered extra boutonnieres for all of the men who attended ($14 USD) and corsages for the moms (Donâ€™t remember price, sorry!) My sister was given a smaller version of my flowers. Anaâ€™s assistant brought my flowers and all other flowers to my room about 20 minutes before go time. My sisterâ€™s BF had to run the boutonnieres down to our wedding guests.
Around 4:45 my guests had arrived and I waited in my room got Anaâ€™s assistant to escort myself, MOH and dad down to the site. They drove me in a golf cart (seated 6) to the site. It was fun! The assistant helped time everything out.
Perfect! The only glitch was, the person operating the music was not familiar with Ipods and fumbled with our â€œmarriage license signingâ€ music.
The officiant was very nice with a good sense of humor. I mentioned before, he stood far behind our guests near the speakers. This made for nice pictures. I was somewhat sad about how little I had to say during the ceremony. I only said I DO!
The civil ceremony is required to be scripted but someone mentioned you could have added your own vows. Ana made it sound as if we could not deviate from this and was not able to meet with the officiant before hand. I am sure he would be willing to add some items in if he was able. Doesnâ€™t hurt to ask!
After we were married we had champagne toast with our guests and pictures.
At 6:20, we headed up to the lobby terrace for our reception. We had our first dance and ate. The food was awesome! We had feta and tomato salad (This may be too strong of a taste for picky eaters- but I thought it was greatâ€¦ see pics on my link.) We also had cantaloupe sherbet. Our main course was surf and turf. The steaks were mostly done well to medium well. Our vegetarian friends had the veg. strudel. Everyone loved the food. For dessert we had wedding cake (Vanilla with vanilla fondant) Also, very good! They asked if we wanted to keep to eat the next morning. I said no, for some reason. Boy, was I mad I didâ€™t say yes. I have been craving that cake ever since! J
Like I said, my guests basically ate dinner and relaxed. We had the ipod playing and we did some slow dancing, but no fast. It was very nice. After dinner we went back to the room to change, then went downstairs to the lobby for a drink with some of our guests.
One more thing about the ipod- the person working the ipod had no idea how to work it.... I had to tell him several times what to play when. He didn't really get it. I guess I should have hired someone for this job!
My husband and I had breakfast in bed the next morning. It was very sweet. J We also chose to have our romantic dinner a few days later- I didnâ€™t realize we could have ate on the beach and chose a restaurant. I saw another couple eating on the beach- it looked very romantic!
I hope this review was helpful! Please contact me if you have any questions. I would be glad to help. Kln8205@gmail.com