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Review of my Cancun Wedding :)

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#1 ccarmany23

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    Posted 31 March 2009 - 01:02 PM

    Hi everyone. Let me start out by saying that I am back from my February wedding in Cancun which was amazing- it was such a dream and it was everything that I ever hoped my wedding would be!!! We ended up with 60 people exactly which was a perfect amount. I have to apologize I am technology challenged and have tried to copy the pictures into the review a bunch of different ways and it didn't work, so let me give you a few links for everyone's favorite part of the review...the PICTURES!!!

    Our website is markandchristy2008.com- this was really easy to do and was really helpful to our guests to get to know the area, what to expect in Cancun, and do rsvp's for events.

    Here are the non-professional photos so include some random pics of my hair-make-up trial, welcome bags, etc.
    Kodakgallery.com: Slideshow

    link to pics-website professional ones including our programs, raffia fans:
    Kodakgallery.com: Slideshow

    Here is my wedding review. I will save the review of the hotels and wedding coordinators for last- we had our ceremony and dinner at the Hyatt Cancun Caribe and Reception at Fiesta Americana Condesa.

    rehearsal dinner: A Limoncello Ristorante- organized and great! willing to do a set menu for our group and set a price so that we could budget accordingly. the only snafu was that although we made our reservations on line and confirmed by phone, when my husband went there in person they had no record of reservation..so I would doublecheck when you are down there. The ambience is GREAT, food is amazing, and the restaurant overlooks the water and I knew when I ate there during our site visit we had to a rehearsal dinner there. They were very organized and had great customer service!

    We flew to Cancun on Delta Airlines. B/C- We tried hinting that we were getting married...and our wedding dress and tux carry-on (and my "soon-to-be-bride t-shirt) probably gave it away but would not give us any type of upgrade. One guy gave us drink coupon which laughingly we tried to use an hour later on the flight and the flight attendant wouldn't take it because it was expired... so we were definitely not given any type of extra customer service as bride-groom but flights arrived on time and all luggage so that was good...I don't usually fly Delta so I'm not sure if this is their strict policy on upgrades or if caught people on an off day....but I was surprised we weren't upgraded even after i offered to pay and business class was empty.

    AGI- A+- We got the shuttle from AGI Tours through Javier Gonzalez- they were there on time with our name on sign. Also, we coincidentally ran into several of our family in the airport so although it was originally supposed to be just 2 of us, they let 9 of us cram in and didn't charge us any extra! Which I thought was GREAT :) and we made sure the driver got a good tip! I emailed back a few times with him and recommended their service to my guests for airport rides and everyone had good things to say!

    Hair and Make-up A++++++++++ This was done by Sergio from Yazmin Gonzalez Studio in Cancun. He was recommended to me by Brenda at the Hyatt and I brought along pictures of hair and make-up with me because I had read from so many brides that this was key to looking more “natural” and being more satisfied since you are not meeting the vendors before getting down there. I even paid to do a trial run the day I flew in- which made me feel better for my piece of mind but was not needed with Sergio at all! He spoke almost no English but enough to understand from my body language and basics if I liked or wanted to change something. If I wanted to adjust, he would spend 20 more minutes to make sure it was perfectly what I wanted and worked on everything- how the look would be with veil, with flowers, in bright light, in dark light….he was AMAZING and if he lived here in the United States I would recommend him to everyone. My girlfriends from big cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington DC all said that it was soooo amazing and completely flawless- they wouldn’t let me touch it at all throughout the night because they were afraid I would mess it up. Bravo Sergio- such a sweetheart and amazingly talented!!!!! He was such a find and if you have any questions or want contact info for him let me know.

    Review of Minister Alejandro Monroy- A+++I have nothing but amazing things to say about Alex. He was referred to me by Brenda at the Hyatt and he emailed several times to plan out a wedding that was perfect and represented Mark and I. He incorporated all of our ideas and suggestions and I felt like he was a friend I had always known, even though I just met him the day of the wedding. I would highly recommend him to perform your wedding....he was top notch and amazing. He spoke perfect English and was always quick to reply to my emails- same day.

    Julieta Flores-
    B. Julieta did my flowers. I had some specific ideas about my bouqets and my bridesmaids and boutineers, and general pictures and suggestions for rest of flowers. I sent a lot of pictures and emails over a year, but due to holidays and other things I did lag a bit on getting the contract signed and sent until the last minute which may have contributed to a few things going a bit off balance. Julieta called several times after I flew in and I set up a time to meet with her about flowers. She explained that most of order had come in but a lot of flowers were wilted looking and she didn't think i would be happy with them. I was dissapointed because the only thing i really cared about was my bridal bouqet- I wanted a duplicate of an exact one I had seen on the knot.com and it was dissapointing that those were the flowers that came in wilted. But she went through and showed me pics of each flower she wanted to use to replace it and although i was really nervous in what i would get the day of my wedding they turned out beautiful!!!! The reason I gave her a B was that the bridesmaids bouqets were not full bouqets (they fell apart later inthe night and i realized they were stems in styrafom made to look full) and the dinner flowers were not at all like I had wanted. My mom and I didn't even think they were delivered but I saw a pic from photographer so i guess they put them somewhere- but you know they are really small and nondescript if no one even saw them. But overall, she delivered everything on time for events and worked with me last minute to get what I wanted and was very nice!

    Fire Dancers:
    We used Sarao Special Events Production. A- They performed for 20 minutes and the 2 dancers did a great job. This was a great use of money because all of the guests loved them and kept talking about how unique fire dancers were for a wedding. Everyone loved them! My parents did say that their manager at some point during the wedding was trying to collect more money stating that we did not pay the bill in full (which is ironic because he asked me before they performed to make it 20 minutes instead of half an hour since guests were not bored- so he tried to make it less time and ask for more money) and my dad politely stated that we had paid completely and to follow-up (ie nicely say quit bothering me during the reception) and I guess he left. So I am not sure if there was confusion or if they were trying to negotiate for more money, but I would make sure to have that understood and again, have a point person or wedding coordinator look out for you so that you can enjoy yourself!

    DJ Carlos DJ Mannia Cancun- A+++ All of the rave reviews about them are true! I have never been to a wedding where the entire group was on the dance floor all night long! I kicked off my shoes at the beginning and was on the dance floor almost the entire night long. He played songs that I had wanted, played some requests for guests and did announcements for things like first dances, fire dancers, etc. They were amazing and I can’t say enough good things. We got soooo many compliments from guests on the music- they really did a great job! And they ended the night with our first dance, which I personally really liked because it closed the evening with a sentimental feeling and Mark and I got to dance to it again (a lot less nervous without everyone watching!). And FYI- there are 3 or 4 Carlos's that DJ with this group so the owner asked me to mention that...

    Photos- A. I used Martha Roque for my photographer. I had her come for 5 hours the day of wedding and the trash-the-dress photos the next day. Martha and her assistant were great!!!! They were very easy to get along with, very professional, and managed to capture so many moments going on while getting ready, the ceremony, dinner, and all aspects of the reception. I had given her a list of photos I would like- which I highly recommend doing for any photographer. Trust me, on the day of, it is like an out of body experience and I didn’t remember any of the details for items like that. She came to my hotel the morning my flight went out- which is amazing because she must have worked a lot in those few days and gave me 2 cd’s with all of the photos, hard copies of the pictures in albums and sat with me on the couch lobby while I flipped through every single picture!!! She is very professional and thought she did a great job! My one regret is that for budget reasons we didn’t take group or couple pictures until after the ceremony and between guests mingling and trying to take a million pictures, it was hard to stay organized at all, and as a result we didn’t get good posed pictures of Mark and I, and our family members. So try to do some before the ceremony of the more “posed” ones, or trust me- go off to a different area and literally have someone hold a list of exact ones you would like…but I looove the pictures and my other recommendation is hands-down to spend the money and do the TTD pictures!!!! It is nice to have both formal pictures, and also relaxed pictures!!!

    #2 Soon To Be Mrs. Gomez

    Soon To Be Mrs. Gomez
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      Posted 31 March 2009 - 01:07 PM

      Thanks for sharing! Love the little baby flowers in your hair.

      #3 Erika J

      Erika J

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        Posted 31 March 2009 - 01:11 PM

        Great Review . thanks for including pics.

        #4 ccarmany23

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          Posted 31 March 2009 - 01:21 PM

          Hey everyone- I just realized that I think the second link to Kodak Gallery has both the non-professional and professional photos. So you can just use that to see the pics.

          #5 ccarmany23

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            Posted 31 March 2009 - 02:32 PM

            Review continued....

            As some of you have seen in my other posts, I did my ceremony and dinner at the Hyatt; Reception at the Fiesta Americana Condesa. This was for a few reasons- we fell in love with the beach cove that had private access at the Hyatt and the Blue Bayou Restaurant for our dinner plans. We ALSO fell in love with the Kambu Resaurant at the Fiesta Americana Condesa, and loved the hotel also. So we decided to be non-traditional and use both places for the event. It got a bit tricky at times to coordinate before going down to Cancun but the locations were gorgeous (very unique places) and it added a fun element breaking up the dinner and reception into two areas.

            Fiesta Americana Condesa- A Kambu Restaurant and wedding coordinator Mariana Leon were AMAZING!!!!! We had done a site visit and had checked out the hotel and met with Mariana previously. The hotel was really nice and they really went above and beyond for us as guests during our site visit. From reviews that I have heard from other brides on the forum, I think that Mariana has really stepped things up a notch. She always responded quickly to both me and my mom, worked with all of our needs and again, helped work at the week of wedding with Hyatt coordinator to deconflict/confirm details. Mariana worked with DJ, Florist, fire dancers, alchohol delivery, snacks and arranged limo for transfer for us and wedding party, and turned out great!!! She also was amazing and took point during the entire night when any vendors had questions, etc. She was fantastic and I can't say enough great things about her. She also gave us a book as a gift with wedding quotes and a nice note to us- which I thought was a really nice touch! I highly suggest checking out the Kambu Restaurant at this hotel for wedding- it has high Palapa ceilings, gorgeous tile floors and a fountain in the middle of the floor. Really beautiful and the food there is GREAT!!!!! Pictures don't do the restaurant justice that I took but it's right on the water and blocked from the wind- so it feels like you are outside on water but blocked from elements. Oh- and the wait staff were very attentive all night.

            #6 ccarmany23

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              Posted 31 March 2009 - 03:07 PM

              So the last part of the review is of the place that we stayed- Hyatt Cancun Caribe which is now renamed the CANCUN CARIBE ROYAL PARK GRAND after the owner joined another brand of hotel. The wedding coordinator there is Brenda Camacho. This hotel is where almost all of our guests stayed all week.
              Let me start off with positives... the hotel was really pretty and the location for ceremony was perfect. The regency tower backs up to private cove so there was a private entrance with long winding stairs onto beach for bridal party and me to walk down on. The Blue Bayou restaurant is really pretty and the food is amazing!! In fact, people raved about dinner food constantly- top notch food. The coordinator did do a few things nice- she stayed with me when I had my trial run of hair/make-up to help with translation, and she helped me locate my lost luggage that I accidentally left at airport (oops!). She also did a rehearsal the night before at no cost!
              Overall, I don't even know what to rate this....I feel torn because the day of the event it was magical and beautiful and everything that I ever dreamed of....so in that aspect Brenda helped make the wedding what my vision was!

              But the hotel...and several aspects related to it I would have to rate it as a D/F-----------. Here is why in a nutshell: Like many brides at Cancun hotels, I changed wedding coordinators three times in a year and a half. There was a definite language barrier with Brenda, which at times was really frustrating because I didn't originally sign on with her but she was the only coordinator there. Every time that I thought we understood the contract and details, she was confused again. I found out in January (a month before wedding) that hotel changed and was no longer a Hyatt, through travelocity reviews and from some of my guests. I made several phone calls to hotel and emails to Brenda who assured me everything would be honored as originally promised. But once down there EVERYTHING was different and in fact the hotel did a lot of putting people off in the moment..then changing things- they are in fact extremely dishonest and I always felt like they were trying to take advantage of people. For example, the reservations were COMPLETELY screwed up. Including our rooms, we were not given room we had originally requested, we were overcharged, we were not given free rooms from room block, on and on. My mom had arranged to have a bridal shower for me with about 25 people at a restaurant by pool and arranged it through Brenda and settled on price per person. The day of event, when bill came, she said that "sorry but the price is now different" and charged her more money..I am not sure if my mom fought this or just paid it. We were not given any perks as bride / groom- not even bottle of champagne waiting for us when we checked in, etc. In fact, day of wedding night she decorated room with petals I had brought for dinner and nothing else...A lot of logistics issues- like we received an upgrade night of wedding and the day after when we tried to go back to our original room they kept telling us we were checked out of first room and we had to fight to get back in to get all of our belongings- this is all happening the day after wedding and same day as our TTD. So we had to convince them to let us back into room, pack up everything, and then they charged us extra for that room- it was so chaotic!!
              Unfortunately, after two hours of arguing at check-out over bill (Brenda was off work that day) they wouldn't honor anything and suspiciously nothing was in their system. I dug out emails, showed them page by page of details... it was like nothing I have ever seen at a hotel! After a year and a half of planning I couldn't believe we had to argue over details like that- while all of our guests were passing by in hotel and we had been staying at hotel with 50 guests all week! we were finally exhausted and agreed to pay after a promise from hotel that they would talk with brenda day after and reimburse us! Well, it is now two months later and after several phone calls and emails and letters to both Brenda and the manager....I am down to trying to get the Hyatt to help me intervene and am also reaching out to a legal friend to get ahold them. Such a mess!!! I have tried everything and can't believe that they just ripped us off like that....I wish I could report them to BBB and tell EVERYONE to NEVER EVER EVER stay there. When we checked out, also, they didn't know where my personal decorations were from day of wedding and no one would help me locate it! I finally went down and got some of it myself..the rest is still being "looked for" meaning I will never receive it.
              If anyone has any advice for me on this let me know- it is sooo crazy. I even tried to throw around that i will be giving them bad reviews to future brides hoping it would motivate them to help settle the situation...and it made no difference. they just don't seem to care at all. help .

              On a better note..... we switched for last few days of our trip to Dreams Cancun and I give it a A++++++++++++++++. I loved loved loved this hotel. What a difference :). Upon arrival, we were given fresh towels and water... we got to our room and it was decorated as "honeymoon room" with sign on door, fresh petals and champagne and a nice note. We were overlooking the dolphins, and the view was amazing! i wished that we could have stayed there for weeks- it was soooo great!!!!! we did nothing but eat and drink and relax and i have nothing but great things to say from a guest perspective about Dreams.... loved it loved it...

              Hope this review is of help to other brides!!!!!!!!

              #7 ccarmany23

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                Posted 31 March 2009 - 03:15 PM

                And best of all- I had the wedding day of my dreams with my best friend of 6 years with 60 of our friends and family! :):):)

                #8 Gail

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                  Posted 31 March 2009 - 03:22 PM

                  congrads. you look beautiful. can you give info/prices for hair and make-up please. I booked carlos- glad to hear he was great. I was just told to ask for him, thanks for telling their is more than one- so which one do i ask for, owner?
                  Pro wedding pic slide show


                  #9 ccarmany23

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                  • 138 posts

                    Posted 31 March 2009 - 05:20 PM

                    Gail- congrats! The hair and make-up was $330 for trial (of both hair and make-up) and the day of the event. I copied the email sent to me from Carlos Martinez- the owner- and it sounds like he will be the one to most likely contact you but that there are other DJ's who may attend the actual event. Happy planning :).

                    Hi Christy,
                    I am glad you like it , the people from our staff that attend your event
                    told me that was a really fun crowd, could you please post you review
                    about our service in to the cancun vendor area for the BDW , and please
                    clarify that we are a company that provides Dj services and it´s no t just
                    myself ?, i´m the owner and the General Director , and other brides are
                    thinking that i´m the only Dj in the company, i will apreciate it,

                    Thanks and congratulations

                    Carlos Mart­nez
                    General Director
                    Mannia Audio, Video and Professional Lighting
                    MANNIA - Audio, Video e Iluminaci³n Profesional

                    #10 Married_In_Maui

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                      Posted 03 April 2009 - 01:46 PM


                      Can you post the contact info for the gentlemen that did your hair/makeup!! Thanks so much & congratulations!!


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