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Yvette & Alberto's Virgin Island Wedding Review - October 2008


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#1 Yvette

Yvette
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  • 510 posts

    Posted 21 May 2009 - 09:14 PM

    I know this is long overdue but here we go:


    A L’amour Bridal Shop “A”
    236 W Northwest Hwy
    Barrington, IL 60010
    (847) 381-5858
    A L'Amour LTD Designer Bridal and Occasion Dresses in Chicagoland

    I truly loved my experience here at A L’amour. The girls were so friendly and upbeat, I loved each and every one of them, well almost. The lady who helped me try on dresses knew exactly what I needed. After telling her we were doing a destination wedding she brought the most wonderful dresses out. We had so much fun! After a good handful we finally found “The One”. Now the whole reason of doing the destination wedding was to save money since we were paying for the majority of everything ourselves. After the shock of the price (which I’m sure happens to every bride, right?) I was torn on what to do. She was so understanding & and offered to sell me the sample dress I had on at an outstanding discount! After looking over the dress again and again there wasn’t anything wrong with it. Just needed a good dry cleaning & hem and we were set to go! Sold!!!

    Here is where they lost the “+” from their rating. From previous weddings that I have been in I had a bad experience trying to save money and getting my dress taken in somewhere else from where I originally bought my dress. So since this was my wedding dress I opted to get all the hemming done by their seamstress. God was she rude! I don’t know if she really meant to be or if it was just the generation gap showing. Let’s see where do I start, I told her I just wanted the dress to be cut evenly all the way around because we were getting married on a beach and I don’t want it to drag. She kept trying to talk me into bustling it, which was not what I wanted. Then she said with the layers my dress had it would look funny the way I wanted it and said we should cut a design into it, whatever that means! And to make matters even worse she would not let up on the comments about my tattoos. Ok lady not to be all bridezilla on your ass but who is paying who here!? Enough comments from the peanut gallery & just do what I asked! In the end, she did what I wanted and it looked perfect!


    Woodland Cleaners “A++”
    233 E Irving Park Rd
    Streamwood, IL 60107
    (630) 483-7733

    I love this cleaners! The lady at the counter is always so nice. I have been going here for some time now. I am vertically challenged so I am always bringing my pants in to get hemmed. So when I bought my wedding dress I didn’t hesitate to bring it here. She did a wonderful job…twice! The first time was when I first bought my sample dress to clean up the worn looking straps and the second when we got back. It was pretty sandy from our TTD session. Berto’s outfit was so filthy I didn’t think she would be able to get the set in stains out. But when I picked them up they were as good as new!


    American Airlines “F” I will NEVER fly AA again!
    I was fully aware that our wedding landed during hurricane season but the way AA dealt with our situation was unacceptable. While arriving at O’Hare we found out our flight was cancelled due to the weather. They gave us a couple options one was to fly to FL and get on standby for another flight or wait there and hope something else came along. Needless to say we went to FL with the thought that we would be closer than staying here. After getting to FL we were stuck in the airport for hours waiting for our standby flight. After numerous gate changes our flight was finally boarding soon. After finding the last gate change to our dismay we realized there were 50 other passengers who were also waiting on standby from the day before. Knowing our situation was hopeless we got on the phone to our travel agent trying to see if there was anything else we could do. After getting confirmation of definitely not getting on this flight we needed to know where our luggage was. I told the man at the front desk, theoretically if we were supposed to be on this flight does that mean our luggage is on it? He was unsure and told me to talk to baggage on the first floor. Aggravated, tired, and hungry I went down to baggage claim with my future mother-in-law while my fianc© and future father-in-law went to see what they could do about another flight. No one had answers for me about our luggage so I hoped for the best that it would make it to the island before we did. At the ticket counter I could see the frustration in Berto’s eyes. He explained that we needed to get to the island for our wedding and this is how the convo went:

    Lady at the counter said “there is nothing I can do, I guess you are going to miss your wedding.”
    Berto tells her “that is not acceptable.”
    Lady: “excuse me.”
    Berto: “I cannot accept that as an answer”

    After going back and forth we finally got a manager involved. He was super polite and worked with us. The best he could do was get us on the next flight to Puerto Rico which was leaving in the next 15min. We took it thinking at least we will be that much closer. Thank you Mr. Manager! After getting to PR we found a hotel for the night with free Wi-Fi and attempted to contact smaller airlines to charter a plane. Luckily someone read our plea for assistance via an email I had left the night before and called us first thing in the morning. An extra 1,000 for an overnight hotel stay and 4 passengers on a chartered plane we finally made it to the island. Luckily no one else had any trouble getting to the island. Once we got there everything was perfect! Turns out they just had some heavy rain.


    Charter Plane Caribbe “A+”
    San Juan, Puerto Rico

    Kudos to Carolina for responding to our email right away! Thank you so much!


    The Superior Court of the Virgin Islands- St Thomas- St John “A”Physical Address:
    Alexander A. Farrelly Justice Center
    2nd Floor, East Wing, Room E206
    5400 Veteran's Drive
    St. Thomas, VI 00802

    Mailing Address:
    P.O. Box 70
    St. Thomas, VI 00804
    P: (340) 774-6680
    visuperiorcourt.org

    Applying for our marriage license was so easy! We sent in our application with a letter stating when we would be on the island to pick it up. We checked thru security and only waited a couple minutes before we were able to see a clerk. After double checking our paperwork, id’s, swearing us in, signing the dotted line, kukucachoo that was it! Off back to the hotel for some food and drinks!


    Wyndham Sugar Bay Resort & Spa “A”
    6500 Estate Smith Bay
    Saint Thomas, VI 00802
    (340) 777-1700
    wyndhamsugarbay.com

    I was more than pleased with our stay here. There were 25 of us total, 18 adults and 7 kids. The majority of us went with the All-Inclusive Plan which was wonderful since food and drinks can break the bank if you’re not careful. Check-in was easy and we were given info about the hotel along with an envelope that included coupons for local attractions and a $100 traveler's check – good thing, we needed that after our added expenses we just spent.

    The resort is fairly big but super easy to find your way around. It had beautiful views, lots of plants, all sorts of wildlife including iguanas, various birds and snails. The rooms were simple and comfortable, nothing elaborate but let’s face it you’re not on vacation for the room! We had a king size bed, desk, 2 chairs, flat screen TV, mini-fridge, safe, iron/ironing board, hair dryer, lots of hangers and a clean bathroom. Our room had a balcony with chairs and a table overlooking the ocean.

    We spent most of our time at the pool/beach, Mangrove Restaurant and the Turtle Rock Sports Bar. Now to get to the pool/beach area there is a shuttle that can take you from the lobby down to the pool area and let me tell you why. There are a 100 stairs you have to go down to get there. Going down isn’t a big deal but let me tell you coming back up is a whole other story! I really got a work out during our stay. With the pool being so far away from the rooms there wasn’t any noise to worry about late at night or early during the day. And since there are no lifeguards the pool never closes! Awesome for a late night dip in the pool or the hot tub! The pool had many chairs to layout, there was a small waterfall and in the grotto there was a pool table & life size game of Jenga! Don’t forget to look at the activity board for games to check out or to see the feeding times of the iguanas. That was really neat! On one section of the pool there is a volleyball net to get your game on. There are shacks poolside to rent snorkel/kayak equipment from that is free! All they need is a credit card & room number. Just make sure to turn in your items before 4pm or else you will get charged. The beach itself was tiny and a little rocky, so becarefull! There are also wave runners you can rent right on the beach.

    The restaurants:

    Manor House Restaurant: Located in the main building near the lobby offers a wonderful buffet for breakfast and dinner. There is a small fruit, salad bar and dessert bar. There's a hot buffet featuring: various meat dishes (beef, chicken, seafood), potatoes, soup and like the Iguana Grill you can place a custom grill order. They also offer a great breakfast buffet with eggs, lots of breakfast meat, potatoes, oatmeal, cereal and an omelet station.

    Mangrove Restaurant/Iguana Grill: Another buffet but poolside. The meals were tasty including a salad bar, burgers, hot dogs, fish, mac & cheese, pastas, chicken, potatoes, pizza and lots more!

    Turtle Rock Sports Bar: This is also located poolside and served up some addicting drinks! The bartenders were polite. They have a variety of fruity cocktails and frozen drinks. The kids also loved their virgin pina colada’s and kiddie cocktails.

    Caribe: This was a more upscale restaurant located poolside right next to the Turtle Rock Sports Bar. It was a Caribbean/Latin American cuisine. They featured signature entrees such as Braised Short Ribs, and Grilled Chimichuri Marinated Flank Steak. It was a nice change from all of our buffet eating.

    Ocean Club Lounge: This is connected to the Manor House Restaurant. There is just enough room for a small bar and a bunch of slot machines. Regular drinks can be ordered her unlike the fruity ones at the Turtle Rock. They also offer a late night pizza menu that you can take to-go and have Karaoke on Monday nights that was so much fun!


    Sugar and Spice “A”
    P.O. Box 305907
    St. Thomas, VI 00803
    (340) 690-3434
    sugarandspice-vi.com

    These girls were so nice! When I couldn’t get an appointment at the hotel spa I contacted JeT'aime over at Sugar and Spice . Her and her partner came to my room at the hotel and did mani’s for myself, my sis & my mama. They were easy going, talkative and overall great girls. I would absolutely recommend them for all your spa/wedding needs.


    Mary @ Island Style Weddings “A”
    St. John, US Virgin Islands
    1-888-456-0010 1-340-774-1484
    islandstyleweddings.com

    Mary was fantastic! I had booked her almost a year and a half before our wedding. She was great at answering all of my questions, my family’s questions, friends questions…I know I kept her inbox full! Her wedding packages made it really easy to see what different options you had in wedding locations, transportation, flowers, photography, videographer, and of course special touches to add to the ceremony. Her website was very helpful! She puts out all of the important information you need in applying for the marriage license to simple reminders about sunscreen to avoid funny tan lines. Mary really did do it all! From helping us choose our wedding location – flowers – transportation for us and all of our guests – photos – being our Officiate. We could not have asked for a better wedding planner!


    Blueglass Photography “A”
    6860 Upper Wintberg
    St. Thomas USVI 00802-3413
    1-866-PHOTOVI
    blueglassphotography.com

    The pictures came out fantastic! Love that you get a copy of all the images on a cd. My only regret is not getting individual photos with each of my siblings.


    Hi Def Video “A”
    PO Box 303208
    St. Thomas, VI 00803
    340-777-1000
    hidefvi.com

    They put together a 20 minute video of our ceremony and it was so great to live the moment again. We did have a little mix up when we received the video, the song we chose wasn’t on the dvd, but a quick email fixed that right up! Thanks Mike!!!


    Ashley Photography “B+”
    Tillett Gardens - Art District, St. Thomas, USVI
    340-715-1239
    ashleyphotovi.com

    We hired Ashley for our Trash The Dress photo shoot. Ashley was full of excitement while working with her. She was so much fun, she drove us all around the island to get pics at different locations which I absolutely loved! The only disappointment is she didn’t use any sort of filter or extra long lenses. Just a regular 35mm. I wish I would have done my homework a little more regarding the price of images. Now they are on her site but they are sorta pricey in my opinion. If you want your own images on a cd they are $20 a picture.


    Morgan's Mango “A”
    Cruz Bay~ P.O. Box 990
    St John, USVI 00831-0990
    340.693.8141
    morgansmango@islands.vi

    This is the restaurant we chose to have dinner at after our ceremony. It was a wonderful little establishment that was ready for our party of 25 when we arrived. Their menu consists of many Caribbean cuisines - Creole, Bahamian, Cuban, Jamaican, Haitian, Puerto Rican and Mayan. All of these cuisines have been influenced by the original inhabitants of the islands which gives you a great array of items to choose from. Because our party was so large we had a set menu. For appetizers we had Empanadas De La Casa, Brie Quesadillas with Grilled Chicken & Anegada Lobster Cakes. For entrees our guests got to choose between the Voodoo Snapper, Grilled Mahi Mahi, Poppas Pickapeppa Steak, Grilled Pork Tenderloin and the Cheeseburger in Paradise. Finally for dessert everyone had the Banana & Mango Strudel served warm with Vanilla Ice Cream. It was absolutely delicious!

    Carlos was my contact at the Morgan’s, although he is not easy to get a hold of we were able to set everything via email.



    I don't have much on the honeymoon front so I will just add it on here:


    Puerto Rico!


    Villa Tropical “A++”
    326 Bajuras
    Isabela, PR 00662
    (787) 872-7172
    villatropical.com

    After our family week in the VI we needed to lay back and relax. We found that at Villa Tropical! The villa was absolutely perfect! All the amenities you need are here. We stayed in the quaint front studio that had a fridge, stove, cups, plates, silverware, HUG closet, ceiling fan, air conditioner, and dish TV – I don’t even have dish TV at home! The deck has a community grill to BBQ, lounge chairs, picnic table, and small shower to clean off the sand from the beach. Speaking of community items we also found some leftover food items from the previous tents. (i.e. salt, pepper, jelly, peanut butter) It was nice since you have to buy your own food. When we left we added to the community pantry.

    The beach was breathtaking! It was so secluded, you could walk ten minutes down the beach and maybe see two people. We absolutely loved it!

    Booking our stay was super easy, I was able to email Jen and she took care of everything! When we checked in, her husband Trevor was there to greet us. He was excellent & so helpful in letting us know where we can go into town for groceries and what to do around town. He suggested horseback riding and I’m so glad he did! That was the best time I have ever had riding! The barn was a short walk down the street, for $40pp we got to go on a 2 ½ hour ride thru the rainforest, along the beach, all while learning about different landmarks. We took a 30min break in between and got to go into the small caves on the beach and even took a little hike up the mountain. It was fabulous!


    Ola Lola’s “A++”
    332 Bo. Bajuras
    Isabela, PR 00662
    (787) 872-1230
    ola-lolas.com/

    Best bar shack ever! We met Jon on the beach. Since we had been on vacation for our second week I was really missing our dog back home. Jon was on the beach walking his dog and I was just drawn to them. His pup was so cute and petting her helped my much needed dog fix. He told us about his bar that was just down the road, funny cause we had just been talking about what to do later on! So we found Jon’s bar just 3min down the road. He and his wife Elaine are really living the dream! During the day his car port is a garage for his car, but at night he fills it with tables and camping chairs for his patrons, while Elaine is the cook, in her own kitchen! Needless to say we were here every night until we had to head back home.


    UFO “A+”
    Isabela, PR 00662

    Ok the restaurant/shack really isn’t called UFO but that’s what the local’s call it. (Unidentified Fried Objects) They have the best Empanada’s ever! And it’s really affordable too. The two of us ate here for under $5. You have to stop by and try them!!!!

    #2 hugrad

    hugrad
    • Newbie
    • 28 posts

      Posted 11 July 2009 - 07:38 PM

      Yvette,

      This is amazing thanks. We are planning a wedding in St Thomas next year and this was the only USVI that I found.

      #3 MsZ

      MsZ
      • Jr. Member
      • 410 posts

        Posted 11 July 2009 - 07:44 PM

        Thanks for the great review... AA sucks, then again, it could also be O'Hare.. Every single time I fly out of there, I ALWAYS have a problem.. without fail. Glad you had a great time, though!!

        #4 weddingchick

        weddingchick
        • Sr. Member
        • 1,052 posts

          Posted 11 July 2009 - 07:53 PM

          Congratulations! Great review!

          #5 ahollo02

          ahollo02
          • Jr. Member
          • 296 posts

            Posted 13 July 2009 - 10:14 AM

            My flight outta O'Hare is always either delayed or cancelled!! Great review!

            #6 BlakleyBrideToBe

            BlakleyBrideToBe
            • Sr. Member
            • 2,115 posts

              Posted 13 July 2009 - 12:33 PM

              Congrats Yvette & Alberto! Thanks for the Review! I have to agree AA does suck. Glad you made your wedding!

              #7 Erika J

              Erika J

                VIP Member

              • VIP Member
              • 8,569 posts

                Posted 13 July 2009 - 12:50 PM

                Great review! Thanks!

                #8 ~*DiAnE*~

                ~*DiAnE*~
                • Sr. Member
                • 1,418 posts

                  Posted 13 July 2009 - 01:17 PM

                  Congrats!! Great Review! Thanks for sharing!! :)

                  #9 hugrad

                  hugrad
                  • Newbie
                  • 28 posts

                    Posted 23 July 2009 - 11:33 AM

                    Congrats, there are very little reviews on st thomas so I appreciate it

                    #10 Rachel&Chris2011

                    Rachel&Chris2011
                    • Jr. Member
                    • 183 posts

                      Posted 01 August 2010 - 07:29 AM

                      thank you and congrats






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