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*The official Aruba Brides CHAT thread*


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#261 alisonu22

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    Posted 12 February 2011 - 11:02 AM

    If you want something a little more private, can I suggest looking at the Aruba Surfside Marina.  It's a beautiful, small bed and breakfast type place with a georgeous stone patio where you can have your dinner and ceremony.  They also have a gazebo where can get married (that's where we are having our ceremony).  It's very private and far from the hustle and bustle of the resorts.  It's also very affordable and have great options for food and drinks.  If you go to their website, you can see some great pictures.  Good Luck!!



    #262 acheung

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      Posted 20 February 2011 - 12:44 PM

      Hello Alisonu22,

      I'm planning a weekend around Labor Day 2012 and would love to know what you thought about Aruba Surfside Marina and your experience with planning & having your wedding there.  Also, did you use a wedding planner, if so, which one and how did you like them.  I can take all the advice, suggestions, comments I can get. 

      thanks so much.

      take care,

      AC



      #263 Mmack

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        Posted 20 February 2011 - 05:55 PM



         

        Originally Posted by AnnCam2011 

        I am getting married at the Renaissance in 7 WEEKS from today *giddy* :) I contacted a stylist who was recommended to me from the Ren wedding coordinator, but still need to book the appt. We are bringing our own photographer and are skipping the videographer. We have a group of 30 coming along and am pretty excited to get out of the miserable COLD and SNOW!


        Hell AnnCam....congrats!! 7 weeks - so exciting. Im getting marredied at the Renaissance in August. We just booked our photographer adn we are undecided about the videographer. What do your bridemaids dresses look like? When you stylist - do you mean hair? Can you give me any tips...did you do welcome bags, rehearsal dinner, etc?

         

        Thanks for you help!
         


        Our wedding is in 11 weeks!!! Can't wait to be a Mrs.!!


        #264 Mmack

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          Posted 20 February 2011 - 05:57 PM



          The Renaissance also does all inclusive but you can also give your guests the choice of not goin all inclusive.

          Originally Posted by MDLady 




          FYI, the Hyatt does not have an AI option (at least it did not in 2010).  I know that the Westin gives you a choice to book a European plan (not AI) and an AI plan for 2 different prices.  I heard great things about the Westin and Renaissance.




          Our wedding is in 11 weeks!!! Can't wait to be a Mrs.!!


          #265 AnnCam2011

          AnnCam2011
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            Posted 14 March 2011 - 05:50 PM

            MMack -

             

            Our wedding was wonderful - you won't have any regrets booking with the Ren. We ventured up by the highrise area a few nights and walked around that area during the day and were so glad we didnt book up there. Also walked by/saw a few other hotels I had looked into and was SO GLAD we chose the Renaissance. The Ren is more laid back/ private - the highrise area seemed like obnoxious-spring-break - nice place to check out but wouldnt want to spend any more time up there than we needed to. Ren is so private and you can't beat that island. GREAT PLACE. We can't wait to go back. Service for the wedding was fantastic - Juney was outstanding and available when I called with questions/changes/etc. and waitstaff was constantly asking what else they could do for us during the reception. Food was yummy and didnt have anything to worry about. It really was a special day and wouldnt have changed a thing (well, maybe a few small things!). I really feel lucky that I did have a perfect wedding - how many people can say that nothing went wrong on their wedding day? I can! Right down to the good luck 2 minute sprinkle in the AM and an absolutely perfect sunset post-wedding.

             

            I booked my initial hair appt at Maggy's which is in the marketplace mall (2 min walk from the Ocean Suites). They had my appt down wrong so I ended up booking 2 days before the wedding with Gladys at the hotel spa. She did a great job and my up do was able to withstand the Aruba breeze and crawling thru/around/on all sorts of crazy stuff our photographer made us do (PS cant wait for the prof pictures!). Go to her for your hair - you won't be disappointed. We got married last Monday which as it turns out was Aruba's "Carnival Monday" meaning everything was closed. That is their National day of rest since Sunday was Carnival (another whole experience there!). The hotel spa was able to accommodate me no problems and I expressed my gratitude to them for being open!

             

            We booked our room at the Marina hotel (5 min walk from the Ocean suite just across the road) and were kindly upgraded to an ocean front room at the Ocean Suites upon check in. I say "ocean front" since our room faced the ocean - I could have thrown something into the water, we were that close. A lot of the suites are "ocean view" and that is a little convoluted, more like "pool view" or "ocean and parking lot view". We spent 9 nights in an awesome room and were feeling really lucky they upgraded us as well as they did. Made our vacation more special. And you can't beat that island - did I say that already?

             

            I have recommendations for you on places to eat as well. Food everywhere we went was awesome.

             

            No rehearsal dinner - my hubby's (heehee) parent's hosted cocktail hour by the pool on Sunday. Happy hour 4:30 - 6pm (2 for 1's!). They brought some little snacks and ordered apps from the bar. It was low key but perfect for us. Good way for all our friends to meet each other and meet our families as well. No welcome bags, rather we are going to do "thank you" gifts here soon. Our dear friend and photographer tooks picts of each couple on the beach at sunset post-wedding and we are going to order copies to send out with a nice frame. Thought that would have more meaning for them than some bag of candy and a water bottle. Our friends will have a nice memory from their vacation they can enjoy for a lot longer than candy or a bag.

             

            Oh my gosh, what else? Everything was just fantastic and seems like a dream it is already over. We have been together for 12 years and for so long this seemed like it was out of reach. Now it is over and done and couldnt be happier we waited. Had we gotten engaged 7-8 years ago, this would have never taken place as it has. LOVED IT. Can we do it again??



            #266 traceysteve

            traceysteve
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              Posted 27 March 2011 - 05:10 PM

              Congrats AnnCam2011!!

               

              Please share more of your tips as they come to mind! Love the idea of the Thank You present...shoot, wish I thought of that!



              #267 AnnCam2011

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                Posted 29 March 2011 - 05:27 PM

                Tons of tips now that I know what to expect there :) What are you looking for in particular? When/where are you getting married? Wish I could go back. MN winter is killin' me this year!

                 

                 

                Originally Posted by traceysteve 

                Congrats AnnCam2011!!

                 

                Please share more of your tips as they come to mind! Love the idea of the Thank You present...shoot, wish I thought of that!



                 



                #268 traceysteve

                traceysteve
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                  Posted 01 April 2011 - 02:09 PM

                  AnnCam2011, anything that you can share would be useful. We are getting married at the Westin, not AI, so places to eat? did you shop? a lot? excursions? anything to beware of? thanks.



                  #269 AnnCam2011

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                    Posted 01 April 2011 - 05:18 PM

                    We went snorkeling twice - once with Red Sail and once with ...? Ill have to look and let you know. Both were good. I preferred Red Sail.

                     

                    Places to eat:

                    Gasporitos (sp?) - local Aruban food.

                    Madame Jeanette's - must go here. Fantastic food, great atmosphere. We ate here twice.

                    Flying Fishbone - also great food, great place. Tables on the beach.

                     

                    Buy your booze when you get to Aruba in the airport. It is duty free and a TON cheaper than the liquor store/grocery store. Mix your own drinks in your room. Wish we thought of it sooner. Buy your own beer too. Bring a soft sided cooler (again, wish we'd known).

                     

                    We hiked up the Hooiberg "mountain" one day. 20 mins up - great view. FREE!

                     

                    We had access to a rental car so took one day to drive around. Couldnt find Baby Beach, but found the prison :) haha.

                     

                    Gosh, what else? It was wonderful. Loved every minute. Bring lots of sunscreen, expensive to buy down there. We ran out!

                     

                    Always felt safe with the exception of walking around downtown after the Carnival parade. Watched a guy totally wreck his motorcycle and thought we'd just watched someone die. He got up and hopped back on. No issues with language or money. They take US$ so dont bother exchanging it. Ahh! I want to go back! :)



                    #270 AnnCam2011

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                      Posted 01 April 2011 - 05:20 PM

                      The one thing I wanted to buy - is a knock off Coach wristlet. We found a cart/stand across the road from Sopranos piano bar. When we went back to the cart after dinner, it was closed and didnt get a chance to get back up there. If you come across it, pick me up one :) haha






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