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Simistar's Secrets Maroma Wedding Review, Dec. 7/08


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#21 kisskissmd

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    Posted 29 December 2008 - 12:57 AM

    Simistar, thanks so much for your fabulously detailed review. I have to agree with Jennifer (above) that the hair/makeup issues definitely make me nervous as well...but perhaps by August of next year they will have figured out how to ensure that their brides are pleased? I will start prepping my 'maids on makeup and hair drills though, just in case. Whew. Thanks again for all the energy you put into this - and you looked gorgeous on your wedding day! I LOVE your gown - who is it?

    #22 julielynn

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      Posted 29 December 2008 - 11:17 AM

      Simistar, it sounds like for the most part things were great!! After reading your review, I had a few additional comments to add from my experience.

      Meeting Cecilia- We had a scheduled time to meet her as well. I arrived at the resort in the afternoon and had my wedding the following day so it was imperative I meet her the day I arrived. She was a hard lady to meet. In her defense, she did have a “surprise” wedding that day (Seriously she said they planned this wedding in 2 weeks and it was a legal one!!). But, honestly, I spent the whole daylight of the first day (I only had 3 days there) tracking her down.. She does need an assistant!

      Hair- Okay, it sounds like they love curling hair. My sister-in-law got the tight curl updo and they tried to do my mother’s hair the same.. My hair style had the pinned curls so I was okay, but that does seem to be their specialty! Get to the spa early. It did take longer than expected to do my hair and make-up. I wanted to get my hair and make-up done with my mother. I refused the bridal suite b/c they said they could not do both of our hair and make-up in there. It sounds like Simistar was able to work something out. I would suggest arranging it with the spa’s front desk and not the stylist.. My French manicure and pedicure was good.

      Cecilia- Cecilia met me at my room on time. My flowers got there JIT which worried me briefly.

      Flowers- I got the complimentary flowers for the bouquet and centerpiece. Both were VERY beautiful!!

      Cake- We had the cheesy flowers too. Not sure what to suggest on the cake. I had a picture of the cake I wanted to use and still got the cheesy flowers. You could ask if they have an alternative to the edible flowers for the cake, I am not sure what they have..

      #23 cabobride10

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        Posted 29 December 2008 - 04:00 PM

        Congratulations and welcome back Simistar!

        I definitely appreciate your detailed review, it really gives me a good idea of what to expect. It sounds like I have to get extremely organized!

        I can't believe your story about the hair and makeup, what a nightmare!! Thank you for your warning....I will plan on doing my own! I am bummed out about the mani/pedis too...I did a site visit a couple weeks ago and I really wanted to do a girls day at the spa and get our nails done. The spa is sooooo beautiful, its a shame they dont have more qualified people working there. I guess my time will be better spent relaxing by the pool. Thanks again!

        #24 Simistar

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          Posted 29 December 2008 - 10:10 PM

          Quote:
          Originally Posted by Jennifer Davis
          Even though the pink nail polish and the "great hair debocle" were probably not so pleasant during, the thought of it all made me smile while reading and I'm pretty sure will end up being lasting fond memories and conversation pieces for you both!

          P.S. I have to admit I'm more than mildly freaked about my hair and makeup next year now after hearing your story!
          Hey Jennifer! Thanks for the congrats:-)
          REALLY -- I did not want to freak anyone out with my review -- just wanted to give infomration I wish I'd had before going:-)
          I think you're getting married at Excellence Playa Mujeres...? That resort has been around a lot longer and I'm sure its salon/spa has better service! I don't think you need to worry...just maybe practice for an "in case" scenario:-)

          Quote:
          Originally Posted by kisskissmd
          I have to agree with Jennifer (above) that the hair/makeup issues definitely make me nervous as well...but perhaps by August of next year they will have figured out how to ensure that their brides are pleased? I will start prepping my 'maids on makeup and hair drills though, just in case. Whew. Thanks again for all the energy you put into this - and you looked gorgeous on your wedding day! I LOVE your gown - who is it?
          KissKiss -- hopefully in a year from now they will be much better!! BUT, I just wanted to warn girls IN CASE to be prepared to do your own hair, or if you want to eleviate that stress entirely, find someone off resort (I didn't have time to do this but definitely wish I had!) to come in and do it...

          Oh, and my dress is an Amsale, the gown is "Tyler"... thanks :-)

          Quote:
          Originally Posted by cabobride10
          II did a site visit a couple weeks ago and I really wanted to do a girls day at the spa and get our nails done. The spa is sooooo beautiful, its a shame they dont have more qualified people working there. I guess my time will be better spent relaxing by the pool. Thanks again!
          Cabobride10 -- we wanted to do a girls' day at the spa as well, but it was really difficult to organize b/c they don't really have it set up to handle more than 3 people at once for manis/pedis. (which is disappointing, considering how big and nice the spa is!). Plus, it's not exactly cheap, and honestly, I saw one girl's toes after she got a pedi and it looked like a two-year-old did it:-)
          As well, as Julielynn mentioned (I think it was Julielynn!) -- the bridal suite doesn't even hold more than the bride! I had a friend in there, but she was just sitting on the floor chatting with me, not getting her hair done... I tried to get my mom in there at the same time at the beginning -- but having two blow dryers going in that room at the same time blew a fuse!

          As I said above, I don't want to freak anyone out!! I'm just trying to help future SMB brides avoid the same issues I had :-)
          So, yes, I agree -- being VERY organized will help!

          #25 Kits55

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          • Wedding Location:Secrets Maroma Beach
          • LocationRiviera Maya, Mexico

          Posted 30 December 2008 - 01:22 AM

          Hey Simistar!

          Thanks for the amazing review! I loved reading through it and hearing your stories and recommendations.

          Thanks for letting us know about the spa; I will say that I've been worrying about that already. What day did you arrive at the resort? And your wedding was on Sunday, yes? Our wedding is on a Saturday and we're arriving most likely on Tuesday or Tuesday night because we're having a legal ceremony. Do you think that if I got a mani and pedi on Tuesday morning that it could still look good for a Saturday wedding? I might also mention to my girls to get their nails done before going to Mexico.

          My favorite tip was the location of the beach arch and pool gazebo so I know which building to request for our room. :) We are also staying in an Ocean Front room upon request of my FI.

          Do you have recommendations for which buildings to stay and not to stay in for the rest of our guests? I think they're all staying in ocean view rooms.

          You mentioned that the s'mores were not actually s'mores, what were they like instead? Do you think I gave them the ingredients that they would make the real ones? :)

          I'm sorry to hear about the poor service during the cocktail hour...i'm definitely delegating chores to our wedding party!

          I'm glad to have a recommendation from Juan Navarro's company, Edgar it is!

          I'm thinking about renting lounge furniture...would you recommend for the cocktail hour or the beach bonfire? I love the pictures I've seen of beach lounge furniture but am not sure when to rent it for. What time did your beach bonfire start? How long did it last?

          Sorry for so many questions :) :)

          #26 Simistar

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            Posted 30 December 2008 - 03:10 AM

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Kits55
            What day did you arrive at the resort? And your wedding was on Sunday, yes? Our wedding is on a Saturday and we're arriving most likely on Tuesday or Tuesday night because we're having a legal ceremony. Do you think that if I got a mani and pedi on Tuesday morning that it could still look good for a Saturday wedding? I might also mention to my girls to get their nails done before going to Mexico.
            Hey Kits55!
            We arrived on a Wednesday night and got married on Sunday...BUT ours was actually a symbolic ceremony. We got legally married before leaving...
            And yes -- I'd suggest getting a mani and pedi BEFORE you go! If it gets messed up before your wedding you can always go to the spa for a touch-up or whatnot...
            If you do get a mani/pedi before you go -- try not to drag your feet on the bottom in the hot-tubs or in the pool!:-) My friend did that and scraped off half her pedi:-)

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Kits55
            Do you have recommendations for which buildings to stay and not to stay in for the rest of our guests? I think they're all staying in ocean view rooms.
            Hmmm...sorry -- I don't think I really heard ANYTHING from our guests about their rooms!:-) Everyone liked their rooms, but I'm not actually sure how many were in an ocean-view...
            However, a couple we're friends with stayed in ocean-front room 1711 (which is funny, b/c that is a honeymoon suite!), which is on the ground floor and is a swim-out suite, and they had to move on their second-last day b/c water was leaking through the ceiling!
            But that's the only problem we heard about :-)

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Kits55
            You mentioned that the s'mores were not actually s'mores, what were they like instead? Do you think I gave them the ingredients that they would make the real ones? :)
            I actually did send the list of ingredients b/c I wasn't sure if s'mores in Mexico were the same as s'mores in Canada/the US.
            I guess they were KIND of s'mores...there was a graham cracker-ish cookie on the outside, but it wasn't really marshmallow inside...more like a kind of mousse...and then it had cinammon sprinkled on top (even though cinammon wasn't in the ingredients:-))...About half of them had chocolate inside, about half of them didn't :-)
            They were still good! Just not really worth the $2/pp extra I thought :-)

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Kits55
            I'm thinking about renting lounge furniture...would you recommend for the cocktail hour or the beach bonfire? I love the pictures I've seen of beach lounge furniture but am not sure when to rent it for. What time did your beach bonfire start? How long did it last?

            Sorry for so many questions :) :)
            No worries -- I don't mind questions! Just glad to help:-)

            I think I know the kind of lounge furniture you're thinking of...
            And I would suggest renting this for the cocktail hour. At the bonfire (which started at about 7pm and went until 11pm...they kept the fire going and drinks coming!) -- we had three tables set up, and then the mats around the bonfire.
            So, people can eat at the tables, and then sit on the mats around the bonfire, or pull up a chair...
            But at the cocktail hour, there's really nowhere to sit...and some of our older guests left after about 1/2 hr b/c they needed to sit down (and also b/c there was no food:-)).
            So lounge furniture would actually be a GREAT idea for the cocktail hour!

            #27 Kits55

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            • Wedding Location:Secrets Maroma Beach
            • LocationRiviera Maya, Mexico

            Posted 01 January 2009 - 08:43 PM

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Simistar
            Hey Kits55!
            We arrived on a Wednesday night and got married on Sunday...BUT ours was actually a symbolic ceremony. We got legally married before leaving...
            And yes -- I'd suggest getting a mani and pedi BEFORE you go! If it gets messed up before your wedding you can always go to the spa for a touch-up or whatnot...
            If you do get a mani/pedi before you go -- try not to drag your feet on the bottom in the hot-tubs or in the pool!:-) My friend did that and scraped off half her pedi:-)

            Oh my gosh, that's hilarious that your friend scraped off her pedi...that's SO me! Great tip, I'm going to tell my sister to remind me of that when we get down there. :)

            Hmmm...sorry -- I don't think I really heard ANYTHING from our guests about their rooms!:-) Everyone liked their rooms, but I'm not actually sure how many were in an ocean-view...
            However, a couple we're friends with stayed in ocean-front room 1711 (which is funny, b/c that is a honeymoon suite!), which is on the ground floor and is a swim-out suite, and they had to move on their second-last day b/c water was leaking through the ceiling!
            But that's the only problem we heard about :-)

            Was it difficult for your friends to change rooms or was Secrets really accommodating? I am wondering how easy it will be to request certain rooms once we're down there. I guess I better stay up to date on the TripAdvisor forums.


            I actually did send the list of ingredients b/c I wasn't sure if s'mores in Mexico were the same as s'mores in Canada/the US.
            I guess they were KIND of s'mores...there was a graham cracker-ish cookie on the outside, but it wasn't really marshmallow inside...more like a kind of mousse...and then it had cinammon sprinkled on top (even though cinammon wasn't in the ingredients:-))...About half of them had chocolate inside, about half of them didn't :-)
            They were still good! Just not really worth the $2/pp extra I thought :-)

            LMAO...i laughed so hard when i read about the cinnamon, that is so random! I'm glad you wrote about them. I'll save the extra $2 per person although my FI thinks that we can buy some $1 sticks at a dollar store, bring them to Mexico and purchase the rest of the ingredients once we're down there. I think he really wants s'mores.

            No worries -- I don't mind questions! Just glad to help:-)

            I think I know the kind of lounge furniture you're thinking of...
            And I would suggest renting this for the cocktail hour. At the bonfire (which started at about 7pm and went until 11pm...they kept the fire going and drinks coming!) -- we had three tables set up, and then the mats around the bonfire.
            So, people can eat at the tables, and then sit on the mats around the bonfire, or pull up a chair...
            But at the cocktail hour, there's really nowhere to sit...and some of our older guests left after about 1/2 hr b/c they needed to sit down (and also b/c there was no food:-)).
            So lounge furniture would actually be a GREAT idea for the cocktail hour!
            Woo-hoo! Thanks for the tip on when to rent lounge furniture...I did read someone's review a really long time on here and she said that for whatever part of her weekend they used the lounge furniture her guests loved it so much they didn't want to leave. Do you know if there's the option of extending the cocktail hour at all?

            #28 jodylynn007

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              Posted 03 January 2009 - 12:46 AM

              Quote:
              Originally Posted by Simistar
              The set-up on the beach includes (i.e. you don’t have to pay extra!) a decorated arch/gazebo. They decorate it with white tulle and it truly does look beautiful! They also line the aisle with big starfish, no extra cost.
              Whooo hoooo!!! It sounds like the starfish I left from my wedding at Secrets on Nov. 5th were used for your wedding!! I am happy that a fellow Vancouverite was able to use them as I left them with instructions that they were for future brides (as they didn't have any for my wedding and I bought them off eBay)

              Still reading the rest of your review... I am sooooo sorry to hear of the problems you had though, it sounds like Cecilia really dropped the ball on many things. I suppose I was lucky that the Wedding Coordinator from Dreams Tulum handled my wedding as she did such a great job. The pictures look beautiful so far though and I am so jealous that you got an ocean front room! We had booked ocean front, but they were overbooked when we checked in (again problems because they were so new) so they gave us ocean view with a swim up and a 3 day credit to return in the future, so I guess they made up for it.

              #29 jodylynn007

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                Posted 03 January 2009 - 01:13 AM

                Quote:
                Originally Posted by Kits55
                Hey Simistar!

                Thanks for the amazing review! I loved reading through it and hearing your stories and recommendations.

                Thanks for letting us know about the spa; I will say that I've been worrying about that already. What day did you arrive at the resort? And your wedding was on Sunday, yes? Our wedding is on a Saturday and we're arriving most likely on Tuesday or Tuesday night because we're having a legal ceremony. Do you think that if I got a mani and pedi on Tuesday morning that it could still look good for a Saturday wedding? I might also mention to my girls to get their nails done before going to Mexico.

                My favorite tip was the location of the beach arch and pool gazebo so I know which building to request for our room. :) We are also staying in an Ocean Front room upon request of my FI.

                Do you have recommendations for which buildings to stay and not to stay in for the rest of our guests? I think they're all staying in ocean view rooms.

                You mentioned that the s'mores were not actually s'mores, what were they like instead? Do you think I gave them the ingredients that they would make the real ones? :)

                I'm sorry to hear about the poor service during the cocktail hour...i'm definitely delegating chores to our wedding party!

                I'm glad to have a recommendation from Juan Navarro's company, Edgar it is!

                I'm thinking about renting lounge furniture...would you recommend for the cocktail hour or the beach bonfire? I love the pictures I've seen of beach lounge furniture but am not sure when to rent it for. What time did your beach bonfire start? How long did it last?

                Sorry for so many questions :) :)
                Hi again ladies!! I just wanted to elaborate on some of the problems Simistar had for her wedding at Secrets and hopefully the differences between hers and mine will help some of you out in the future.

                As for the spa, I had my pedicure and manicure (gel nails) put on at home before I left. Mainly I did this because I am super picky about how I wanted my nails to look in photos, so I found this took the stress away. In fact, I had my pedicure done the day before I left. As for the other spa services, I had a wrap, massage, and facial (Welcome to Secrets package), and a couples massage, and all of those were amazing. I couldn't say enough good things about the spa based on those specific services. As for the hair/make-up... again similar problems. I fixed up my make-up and hair after returning to my room but because I was looking for a curled half up, half down do... it worked to have the lady in the spa do all the leg work with the curling. As for the make-up, even with my touch-up in the room after, my cousin who is a hairstylist did a better job on my make-up the following day for my TTD session. It is sad that none of us have had fantastic experiences with our wedding day looks however with regard to the other spa services, definitely would recommend having your girls get together as long as they can accommodate everyone.

                With regard to the cocktail hour, I think that the problems Simistar may have had was due to her location of it. I had mine on the terrace just off to one side of the main building and because it was close to the kitchen and bar, I believe this is why we had no problems at all. They brought us tray after tray of appies (I only had 17 guests), any drinks people wanted as well as my signature drink (the mango tango) mostly before anyone had to ask. I think that perhaps the beach was too far for them to make too much of an effort. I even found this in sitting at the pool, the side closer to the bar got faster and better service vs. the side closest to the World Cafe Restaurant. Interesting...

                As for recommendations on which buildings guests should stay in, although this question was posed to Simistar I figured I'd offer some thoughts also. I'd recommend that you don't pay for an upgrade to ocean front (unless you are the wedding couple which of course you should then, tee hee) and don't pay more for a swim up or a higher floor "ocean view" as all the rooms are the same and you really don't spend much time in the swim up pool or on the deck of your room. Because the resort, even if booked quite full like it was when I was there (overbooked), there is still lots of nicer places to be like by the pool or the ocean AND every single room is identical inside.

                Last but not least, since I had a good wedding coordinator (Landy from Dreams Tulum) and Cecilia seems to be overwhelmed, I think for sure 100% it is a fantastic idea that if it is within the budget to hire someone extra to help, that way all the hiccups we all experienced can be lessened and dealt with by someone else other than us on our Big Day.

                OK finally, THANKS Simistar for posting your detailed review, as long as all of us work together and help each other out, we can have the best wedding possible! For those interested, I have also done a long detailed review of SMB (Nov 5/08 symbolic wedding) so feel free to click on my username to see threads started by me to have a read so you can compare the experiences.

                Happy Wedding all future SMB brides!!! PS. Would love to hear of some ladies that are going to be at SMB next year in early November (09) as I will be visiting once again to use my hubby and I's free 3 day/night stay due to the overbooking of our rooms. I'd love to see some other weddings and see if they've improved during that year's time.

                #30 Simistar

                Simistar
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                • 645 posts

                  Posted 03 January 2009 - 06:59 PM

                  Hey Kits55!

                  To answer your question about whether it was difficult for our friends to change rooms... No -- but they had a leak in their room so SMB HAD to move them! :-)
                  I think if you want to change b/c you don't like your room, it all depends on how full/empty the resort is...
                  We were in an ocean-front room, but had asked our second day about upgrading to a suite with a jacuzzi tub on the balcony...
                  On our second to last day they said they had a room for us:_) So we didn't bother to move :-)

                  Now, as for extending the cocktail hour, I think SMB will do anything as long as you pay more for it! :-)
                  So, I think they would extend it, but who knows how much they'd charge for it... I think on the SMB Weddings price list it shows how much per additional hour per person... Off the top of my head, I think for the cockatil hour it's like $22/hr per person, or something like that... But maybe I'm totally remembering that wrong :-)




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