KatKen's AZUL Sensatori Review - 6/5/09
Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:04 PM
I want to start off by saying the resort and the people are really amazing. AZUL Sensatori ended up being the perfect location for our destination wedding. There were a few things that we really wanted for our wedding and it was very hard to find all of them at one resort. AZUL Sensatori proved to be perfect for us. Since we didn’t do a site visit and we both had never visited Cancun, we were a little nervous!
Here are the things we were looking for:
2.Had to allow children
6.Close to airport
7.Wedding location on the beach in the sand
8.Accommodations for a large group (we had 72 guests)
Air travel – A+
We flew American Airlines from Phoenix with a connection in Dallas to Cancun. All went very smoothly. We flew first class so we were allowed four checked bags at 50 lbs. or less. We did have to move a few things around in our checked bags once we were at the airport to get them under 50 lbs. (husband had to take his scuba flips and attach them to his backpack for carry-on which was funny) but it worked out great.
We were the first on the plane since we had first class and as soon as the flight attendant saw us with my dress, she pointed right away to the captain’s closet. Dress fit perfect, no problems.
We had only a 35 minute layover in Dallas before our flight to Cancun departed and we were able to get to our gate and on the plane with no trouble.
The ride home had some delays, but all in all, everything was fine.
Customs – A
We had no trouble getting our bags and getting out of the airport quickly even though we had four huge suitcases, and two carry-ons each. We got a green light and were out the door in no time.
I had receipts prepared for the OOT bag stuff, but we didn’t even need it.
American Express Transfers – A
We had transfers through American Express set up by our travel agent. We walked right to the AMEX kiosk, they had our names, the driver was there, packed our stuff up and we were off. He even made a stop at the 7-11 so my husband could get some beer.
The transfer from our honeymoon hotel (Le Blanc) back to the airport was on time, clean, perfect.
Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:05 PM
When we arrived (6 days prior to our wedding) we were greeted with cold clothes, champagne and friendly people. We were immediately taken to our upgraded suite, the Presidential Suite, by our butler Jose Louis. The husband was totally stoked about this! Our suite was amazing! It included a full kitchen, living room area, expansive balcony, and the best butler service â€“ I was almost embarrassed at how well they treated us.
I would bring small bills for tip. We were so impressed by the service I couldnâ€™t imagine not tipping. The check-in counter didnâ€™t always have dollars and you got pesos if you need to break big bills. We brought down $100 in ones and went through it all. It was nice not to have to worry about constantly breaking big bills.
Restaurants / Bars:
Spoons â€“ was only open for breakfast the entire time we were there. It was great. Awesome selection and great service.
Zavaz â€“ Caribbean cuisine, sort of fancy, but still really good. There are a lot of seafood selections here.
Zocolo â€“ Mexican food. The first time we ate there it took forever and the food was OK. But we ate there two more times during the week and it was great and didnâ€™t take as long. The food is a little fancy here too, itâ€™s not the typical cheesy Mexican food weâ€™re used to here in the states. Itâ€™s good, but I usually ordered an appetizer and an entr©e to make sure I was full.
Le Chique â€“ AWESOME! This is an 8 to 12 course dinner with very fancy food. Iâ€™m not a picky eater and will try anything, so this was perfect for us. We did the wine pairing ($35/person) and I would recommend that. My hubby is wino and he enjoyed the pairings. We were full when we left even though the portions are very small. I would highly recommend trying this out as the atmosphere is great and the service was the best in any of the restaurants.
Tapaz â€“ This restaurant was great! We just let them bring us out food rather than ordering off of the menu since itâ€™s family style tapas. It was delicious. We â€œrevisitedâ€ a couple of dishes too since they were so good. Service was really good.
Sienna â€“ This is the only restaurant we didnâ€™t get to. We had guests and family eat here and most everyone loved the food although the husbandâ€™s family ate here and had spotty service. The people were nice but they said their dishes all came out at different times.
Beach BBQ â€“ I didnâ€™t get a chance to try this out but all of our guests loved it! I think they liked being able to go down to the beach in their swimsuits and eat without changing to go into a restaurant. They had hamburgers, ribs, chicken, veggies and everyone said the food was great.
Mojito Lounge â€“ excellent mojitos! This bar is open every night and has nightly entertainment. The entertainment is spotty. One night this guy had a poodle in his magic show that was painted pink. A little scary! I was glad most of my guests hadnâ€™t arrived yet to see it. My brother was so embarrassed for the guy he couldnâ€™t even look at him! The entertainment only lasts for an hour and then itâ€™s a regular bar, which is great.
Swim up bars â€“ These are both great. Excellent service, strong drinks and very convenient!
Room service â€“ Delicious and fast! We tried everything on the menu and then would also call and ask them to make easy things off of the menu (quesadillas, etc.) and everything was great!
TIP: If you like wine, donâ€™t drink their house red. Itâ€™s terrible. We just ordered cocktails and all was fine.
The resort was not a full capacity so there was a rolling schedule for the restaurants. I think this was because of the swine flu. It was a bummer to not just be able to go wherever you wanted for a meal, but I understand that it must cost a lot in operations to keep them all open for lunch and dinner when the resort is not full.
Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:06 PM
The rooms were just beautiful. They were cleaned daily. The beds and linens are great. Views from the balconies are gorgeous! All of our guests were happy with the quality of the rooms/grounds.
Iâ€™ve stayed at many five star resorts, Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton, etc. and this resort is up there. Granted youâ€™re in Mexico, so the vibe is different from a big city Ritz, but honestly, this resort is great!
Hubby and I did a side by side massage in the â€œsky deckâ€ which over looks the ocean. It was amazing. The spa is pricey but worth every penny. I liked the sky deck because you could hear the ocean. We didnâ€™t go use the spa facilities since itâ€™s a far walk from the sky deck, but you can use them if you want.
Wedding Coordinator off site â€“ D
I wish I could give them a better score because my wedding was great, but this gave me the most amount of anxiety through my planning process. I honestly think they are just overwhelmed with the amount of weddings they do and the amount of requests that must come in from confirmed brides and brides just inquiring.
Even though the communication was awful until the month before my wedding, I must admit they still got everything right to the onsite wedding coordinators. I basically planned my wedding in a 30 minute call with the off site coordinator one morning about two weeks before I was leaving.
The off site coordinators are courteous just slow to respond, but seriously, at the end of the day, it didnâ€™t matter, the wedding was perfect!
Wedding Coordinators on site â€“ A+
We had Veronique and Elena. They are both so professional and nice. They are just great, total pros. They spent about 1.5 hours with us the day after we got in going over all of our details and it was all so professional. I felt completely comfortable with them in charge!
I brought them all of my â€œstuffâ€ that I had brought down for decorating a couple of days before the wedding and it was all set up perfectly. They did charge a $50 cash fee for set up, which was sort of strange, but whatever. They set up everything perfectly and I didnâ€™t have to worry about a thing!
We had a few minor glitches (so small itâ€™s not even worth going into) but Elena was all over taking care of everything promptly. I canâ€™t believe how professional they were and willing to do whatever it took to make our day perfect.
Dinner â€œreservationâ€ included in wedding package â€“ A
I used the reservation for a ladies luncheon instead of a dinner since I had too many people to do a rehearsal dinner. (The reservation is for up to 40). The lunch went great, it did end up being at a different restaurant than what the offsite wedding coordinators had told me, but it wasnâ€™t that big of a deal.
They prepare a menu for you and allowed my guests to choose between a chicken and a fish dish once we were at the lunch. They were both very good. They had enough servers who always made sure everyone was doing well.
They also printed special menus with our names on them, which I thought was a very nice touch.
Honeymoon dinner included in wedding package â€“ A+
We did this on Monday night, a few days prior to our wedding since we were moving resorts for our honeymoon. We even had two of our friends join us for the dinner. The table was set up beautifully and the service and food was delicious. I was a little disappointed that we didnâ€™t get the lobster menu we had confirmed with our off site wedding coordinators, but the filet was really yummy and our servers were great.
Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:07 PM
The ceremony looked exactly like we wanted it to. We brought our own music on a CD and I carefully labeled the CD and had the songs in order that I wanted them played. On the label, I put what each track was for. Example, track 1, 2, 3 for guest seating â€“ track 4 for GM to walk down too, etc. They did this perfectly! I was so happy to hear the music playing right on time.
The speakers are great and the music and the minister could be heard perfectly.
This is so embarrassing, but I donâ€™t even know the name of the gal that married us. She was seriously so good though. She gave a beautiful ceremony, her English was good and she was so genuine. Iâ€™m really happy with the way this turned out especially because the first time I met her she was greeting me and my mom and dad as I was walking down the aisle.
Cocktail Party â€“ B
We had the Mexican Donkey bar cocktail party on the beach a little ways down from where we were married. They donkey was a huge hit but he left about 20 minutes early which was a little upsetting.
I didnâ€™t get to eat any of the food (because we were taking photos/socializing) but I heard it was great. The bar was set up and the drinks were flowing.
We hired the steel drum band â€“ looking back Iâ€™m not sure I would do this again. It was expensive and they only play a 45 minute set (half of the cocktail hour time we had). We didnâ€™t even get to hear them. I wish I would have bitten the bullet and paid for them to stay longer or had a plan for music once they left.
Reception â€“ A+
After much debate with the off site wedding coordinators, I was finally told at my on site meeting that our reception could be held at the new plaza. (I think theyâ€™re calling it the Zavaz Plaza).
Everything was set up just as I had asked. It looked exactly like I wanted. Our centerpieces looked pretty! We just got one of the smaller priced options and I was very happy with that decision.
If you are planning on having table assignments for your guests make sure to bring a copy with you with the assignments, table names and number of seats at each of the tables for the onsite coordinators.
The only stressful thing â€“ Elena arrived at my hair appointment around 12 noon and told me that there was a 60 percent chance it was going to rain. She had a print out from weather.com. I had been extremely concerned about the rain since it showed rain showers every day before we left. Once we were down there, it didnâ€™t rain at all.
But hereâ€™s the catch â€“ if you plan on having an outside reception and it rains, the reception is over! They have to take in all of the food and tables and the DJ packs up and leaves. They can move you to a restaurant but itâ€™s not private, you canâ€™t have music, etc.
They did offer a back up plan and Elena let me know that by 3 p.m. (our wedding was at 5:30 p.m.) I would have to make my decision. I could move my entire reception to the ballroom and not have to worry about the rain or I could sign a waiver and chance it with the rain.
My husband really wanted the outdoor reception, so I nervously signed the papers and prayed it wouldnâ€™t rain.
Of course, it started raining during our photos and the cocktail party. Luckily, it was not a hard rain, just a sprinkle and it passed through quickly. They didnâ€™t have to take anything inside and the reception went on as planned! YEA!
DJ â€“ A
This was probably the second most stressful part of my planning. My husband and I really like to dance and wanted â€œgoodâ€ music for our reception. The DJ option at AS is sort of expensive to me and I was really nervous. They sent us this huge song list before, but it didnâ€™t really answer my questions on if he would be good at reading the crowd, transitioning songs, etc.
I really didnâ€™t want to be fumbling with an iPod all night so we decided to go with the DJ. Iâ€™m really glad we did and I would do it again. He does have mostly old school music, but their favorites and no one really noticed. We also brought down a fully loaded iPod and he mixed in our songs so we could have some current hits.
I put our first dance and the father daughter dance each on a separate CD and he played those perfectly. There was a power outage at the end of our father daughter dance, but it was brief and the song was almost over anyway.
Our entire wedding party danced from 8:30 until 11. It was a blast! The DJ provided glow sticks, and balloons and did their best to really make it a fun party!
The DJ does not speak good English, which is totally fine with me since I speak Spanish. It really wouldnâ€™t even matter though if I hadnâ€™t as I barely gave him any direction besides the CDâ€™s for our dances. I did have my outgoing brother do some announcing and that worked perfectly. The DJ provides the microphone for speeches, intros, etc.
Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:08 PM
Iâ€™m not a picky flower person. I just wanted bright roses (in pink for me and orange for the BMâ€™s) in tightly packed bouquets. They turned out perfect. I was a little nervous mine was going to be too big and look weird, but it came out just perfect.
Salon â€“ B
I went ahead and decided to do a hair and make up trial before the wedding and Iâ€™m glad I did even though I had to pay for it. The hair turned out great, make up, not so much.
I elected to just have her do my hair the day of the wedding and I did my own make up.
Videography â€“ A
We had no idea what to expect with our videographer. We just go the package through the resort. When I was walking down the aisle I looked up and there was a videographer!
My expectations for this were low, but I wanted some sort of video. After the cocktail reception the videographer came over to talk to me about delivering the video. He didnâ€™t speak a lot of English but I was easily able to understand his Spanish.
We agreed to meet at our honeymoon hotel two days after the wedding. He promptly met us on time in the lobby of Le Blanc and brought two copies of our DVD. He even brought a portable DVD player so he could show it to us.
Itâ€™s actually quite good! He chose the songs and incorporated the music we used in the ceremony. I would highly recommend him if you are at all wanting some sort of video. I made the husband watch it twice on our honeymoon!
Photographer â€“ A+ (I think!)
So we used Elizabeth Medina for our photography. I got her approved as an outside vendor right when we booked our wedding. She is extremely easy to work with and is very professional. She was prompt, sweet, and I think she got some amazing shots!
I havenâ€™t seen anything yet, as she is still editing, but if our wedding photos are anything like the ones you can see on her blog, Iâ€™ll be a happy girl!
Iâ€™ll make sure to post some professional ones when I get them.
I think thatâ€™s all folks! Please feel free to ask any questions. I hope this helps. I havenâ€™t been super active on the forum, but I LOVED everyoneâ€™s reviews and wanted to make sure to give as much info as possible for all of you ladies!
Posted 24 June 2009 - 12:11 AM
Posted 24 June 2009 - 04:29 AM
love those pics of you and hubby in the sea - did you have a different dress for that? or if not, did you have another dress to wear for the rest of the evening?
has it cleaned out all ok now??
Thanks so much!
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