My Wedding Review! Finally!First of all, I could not have planned this wedding without the help of my wonderful travel agent. She took care of the details, and last minute hiccups, which we truly appreciate. Use your travel agent as they are an excellent resource during the planning stages all the way though to when you arrive home.
My husband and I decided to travel with Air Transat, because the larger planes accommodated our needs, and wedding packages were so affordable (or so we thought). Our flight times were excellent, and taking the Option Plus seating for our immediate families was an excellent choice. We were allowed extra luggage allowance and priority seating, which proved to be very valuable! Flight staff were very attentive, especially when I fell very sick on our flight home, they rushed my on board right away near a bathroom, and gave me special attention, it was greatly appreciated!)
Our wedding was November 23, 2012. The weather was hit and miss, one day gorgeous sunshine, the next overcast with intermittent showers. We were lucky enough to have sunshine with a wonderful breeze on our wedding day.
We were required to meet with the wedding coordinator a few days after we arrived. We went over bouquets, colors, pick up times, etc. The big issue we had with the coordinator was a result of miscommunication between the hotel and travel agent. There is a ministerâ€™s fee (4,000 pesos) which was never mentioned to us in any email, which we were suddenly required to pay in order for our marriage to take place. We were shocked to have to pay this cost, especially when we were only having a symbolic ceremony. So word to the wise, take a copy of every email, including what you have paid for in your package and anything communicated with your travel agent. Luckily, we used a calling card to call our travel agent who reassured us that she would cut us a cheque as soon as we arrived in Canada for the cost of the ministerâ€™s fee.
The entertainment staff were excellent. The shows were entertaining at night, especially â€œLion Kingâ€ and â€œPerfect Coupleâ€. The grounds and pools were very clean, staff were always working hard on the beach and gardens. Bar service was excellent, best drink by far is the Miama Vice. We found the housekeeping to be hit and miss. As the honeymooners, we tipped and expected excellent service and found it to be subpar. However, some of our guests were getting towel art, tequila, champagne (which I think may have been meant for us). It should be noted that you can smoke anywhere, and if you are sensitive to cigarette smoke, beware that you will get a face full of smoke once or twice. The a la carte restaurants at Grand Sirenis were excellent. We loved Japanese and Brazilian, and the Italian, Mexican and Cajun were also good. The buffet food left a lot to be desired. It had lots of selection, but the same food every day gets boring. As some others have mentioned, shuttles do exist at this resort, however, trying to get a ride to dinner or to the beach can be nearly impossible. This resort is massive, and there is a lot walking to and from different places. Just something to keep in mind if you have older guests attending. Overall, I think our guestâ€™s needs were met.
This resort has so much for your guests to do! But if you do have a change, go into town. Go to the Lapis Jewelry store, 2 minutes from the resort. Go to Coco Bongo if you like a great show and the nightlife. Go to Playa Del Carmen, rent a scooter, take the ferry to Cozumel. Shop on Fifth Avenue. Swim with the Dolphins, Xplor Cave Adventures, Coba Ruins. I wouldnâ€™t pay for seeing the turtles, since there were three turtles we could swim with right in the resort cove. Cool!
The day of our wedding was great. We did not use the salon, so I canâ€™t comment on hair or makeup packages. Ceremony started about 30 minutes later than when it was scheduled, not sure why, we were all ready to go! We didnâ€™t want to pay anything above and beyond what our wedding package included, and my bouquet was beautiful, as were my bridesmaids. I made my own corsages so I canâ€™t comment on those either. The resort photographer took incredible photographs, we couldnâ€™t be more pleased with how they turned out. I felt like we did not have enough time with her to take pictures, but between our guests, we have over 3,000 pictures! We had our reception dinner at the Steakhouse restaurant, which was very good. However, you only have one allotted hour for your dinner. The staff were rushing us out, asking if they could cut the cake, which I refused. So we rushed to cut the cake while people took pictures, even though guests hadnâ€™t finished supper yet. We also did not plan a formal reception, so I canâ€™t comment on DJ, dance floor, etc. Sorry! We were supposed to receive bottle of champage and fruit basket the morning after the wedding, however we did not get this until the morning of our departure home, one week later, after many phone calls and visits to the wedding office.
I realize I canâ€™t comment on some important areas of planning, but if you have any questions feel free to private message me, and I will try to answer anything I can!