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Starlitk's Dreams Tulum Wedding Review 6/27/09 - SUPER LONG

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Starlitkâ€s Dreams Tulum Review


This review is crazy long! I found everyoneâ€s so helpful, that I wanted to be as detailed as I could in an effort to give back.  I canâ€t believe itâ€s already over. Wow – does the time fly by! Thanks to everyone on this forum for all of their help. I honestly do not know what I would have done without this forum. Special thanks to Tammy and Sunbride! I hope my review will be helpful to brides-to-be out there who are planning. Best of luck!



Dreams Tulum was my first experience with a resort, so I don't have anything to compare it to besides my expectations.


Check-in for us was great. A waitress came and brought us champagne while we were at the front desk, and a bellman gave us cold wet hand towels to cool off. There were no problems with our reservation. We asked to get upgraded, but were told there were no ocean front rooms available. When we were done at the desk, a bell man took us on a golf cart to our room with our luggage. Our guests did have more problems (e.g., rooms not being ready, 1 king instead of 2 queen beds, etc.)


Our Dreams section garden view suite was very nice, almost all marble. Everything in it worked just fine (a/c, safe, clock, etc.) We were in the building closest to the SSG and the wedding gazebo, which was very convenient. We could kind of see the ocean from our balcony, which was very nice. My only complaints about the room are probably that the water pressure is not that great, and the beds are not that comfortable (i.e., very firm mattress and only decent linens). The pillows are not comfortable at all. The air conditioning blows right on you in bed (this is a deal-breaker for me), but we found that if you kicked up the a/c before bed, we were fine just shutting it off for the entire night (even in late June). Our room was missing a few things (robes and slippers), but did receive them when we asked for them later in the week.



Horribly slow. With one exception, every time we ordered we waited over an hour to receive what we needed (even things that you donâ€t have to cook like a wine corkscrew and bottles of water). A few times, room service never even came and we had to call again and ask for our stuff. The menu/food available is okay, but definitely does not compare to what you can get in the restaurants.



Overall, the staff is really great. The entertainment staff is very inclusive and they work their butts off! They are at the resort for 12 hour+ days, and still seem happy at 11pm when they are doing shows. Housekeeping service was great, and the resort is extremely clean. Bar service is kind of slow, but only because they are constantly making complicated, blended drinks. The poolside service is very good – they come around often and keep the area clean of used drink glasses, etc. Everyone is extremely friendly! Almost everyone you pass says “hola†with a smile. Overall, the entire staff (waiters, room service, bellmen) also did not seem to expect tips (i.e., they didnâ€t wait around for it), which was nice and made you more happy to give them!


We loved the food. Some restaurants were better than others, but overall, we really liked almost everything we got!


Himitsu: The Asian restaurant was our favorite. All of the appetizers and entrees we tried were terrific.

Gohan: The sushi was surprisingly good.

Portofino: The wait was long – especially if you went with a party larger than 4 people. The hosts were a little slow in seating people. The food was good – the appetizers were especially good.

Bordeaux: This is the most romantic restaurant at the resort.

Seaside Grill: This restaurant has a great view of the ocean, good lunch options, and quick service. I didnâ€t get a chance to eat there for dinner, but I heard that they fancy it up and serve some great steak options for dinner.

The Patio: The service here was incredibly slow (even when they are not busy). Both times that I went, it took over an hour to get our food (one time I had to leave before my food came b/c we had a wedding appointment). The food was okay, but not great.

The Buffet/World Café: The food was terrific – so many options. I simply loved breakfast every morning, and it was also very good for dinner.


The beach is VERY rocky and really hurts to walk on it. Definitely pack water shoes! They are a MUST! We really only went in for one day b/c of how much it hurt our feet to walk in. In hindsight, I wished I had told my guests to pack the shoes.


The activity pool is very active and often pretty full! The adult/relax pool does have children in it, but was still relaxing. They were great!


I had read that the gym was disappointing, so I was prepared for it. The weight equipment is outdated, but they have most of what you would need, so I was able to get by fine. The cardio equipment, on the other hand, was bad. There were three treadmills, and one was broken. The stair stepper looked somewhat dangerous, and was also broken (the manual knob to adjust the tension didnâ€t work). The bike worked, but the pedals slipped, so you couldnâ€t stand (even though it is a spinning style bike). There is also a crazy looking elliptical style thing that is also broken.



It rained pretty heavily while we were there, and it really did seem to impact the resort, which kind of took away from its high quality/luxury feel.

- The World Café ceiling collapsed inside after a storm, and it was closed from Sunday on (we left on Friday, and it was still closed). They ended up setting up the buffet in the Veranda, and the selection of food was much smaller at first (but got back up to normal size after a few days).

- Quite a few of our guests†rooms had the ceilings leak and drip onto them in bed, and others on the ground floor were slightly flooded. The resort relocated these guests (some were upgraded, others were not), but that was really not ideal and kind of embarrassing for us, who had chosen the resort.

- The power also seemed to be affected (although I do think this happened before the rain even began). Basically, the power kept going out at the resort. A few times, the lights just dimmed, but there were a few times that they went out completely. One time this happened at night while we were outside, and the place went pitch black, which was kind of scary to some of the people we were with at the time. This also kept causing the clock in our room to reset, so I never had a clue what time it was while I was there.



Outstanding! We loved our couples massage so much that I went back for a neck, back, and shoulder massage a few days later. It is a very pretty spa and feels luxurious and relaxing. We never had any problems with our appointments.



Experience with contacting the resort/wedding coordinators: D-

We had problems with planning our wedding at DT from the very beginning. My fiancé and I had chosen DT right before they were closed down by the Mexican government for their environmental infractions during expansion. (There is a BDW thread about this if you want more info, but basically, they expanded on protected land without doing an environmental impact study). We had done so much research on resorts and felt like we finally found a luxury resort that would not be extremely expensive for our guests, so we stuck it out and waited for them to reopen. Luckily, they finally did, and we thought we were through the worst of it. Ha! During the closure, communication was extremely slow, and we chalked it up to them being extremely busy helping current brides. We remember waiting 3 weeks for them to confirm our wedding date, and other communication was also very slow.

Post-closure and until our wedding, this poor communication did not change despite my hopes. It took the WCs an average of 2 weeks to get back to us regarding any questions we sent – sometimes longer and sometimes shorter (but never really faster than 1 week). Then, when the swine flu hit, they were still very slow about communication, and did not have any solutions to provide to us. Even when it was the month or even week before my wedding, they still did not respond quickly, which left us doing things last minute or not at all! Thankfully, I had the BDW girls to answer my questions – I would have been completely lost without them!

One of the things we liked about DT was that they only took 2 weddings per day. After we got to the resort, we found out that there were THREE weddings scheduled on our day. This led us to have almost NO options for venues. Originally, when we booked, we had scheduled the beach for our venue, but over time decided that this was not what we wanted. The logistics of not having a dance floor and it being extremely windy when we got there led us to want something else. We had requested the Seaside Grill months and months ago, and were told that they would confirm whether we were able to have this location 30 days before our wedding, because they only let you have it if the resort is booked at less than 70% capacity. However, they would NOT confirm this for us, and finally told us the day before we left for our trip that it was booked for another reception. When I complained, they clarified that they were leaving it open for the resort guests. Weird.

I hadnâ€t booked anything else because I thought I would have plenty of options once I got there b/c there was only one other wedding on our day. Well, that did not turn out to be the case, so when Anabel (who kept calling me by the wrong name, btw) showed us the relax pool, told us this was our only option aside from the beach and convention center, and then mentioned that there would be another wedding on the terrace of El Patio, I was angry. These two venues are so close that I knew I would see and hear their reception during mine. Plus, I felt it was poorly lighted. I kept asking about the Seaside Grill, and she just kept saying they couldnâ€t do it.

When I asked what they would do about rain locations for all three weddings, Anabel said she was thinking, and then changed the subject! She couldnâ€t even answer my questions! Then she said not to worry, that she didnâ€t think it would rain. (Preview: It rained at my wedding reception). They literally had NO rain plan for all of these weddings. She said we would probably go to the convention center, which the idea of alone broke my heart.

Next, we discussed cocktail hour options, and Anabel explained that there were no indoor options for our cocktail hour (as I had requested over email ages ago). We could have it on the beach (which I didnâ€t want), or all the way at the Convention Center terrace at the other end of the resort. This threw me over the edge, and finally I started really complaining. This led Anabel to bring me to Landy, who was slightly more helpful, but still did not solve all of our problems. She still refused to give us the SSG, assured me it wouldnâ€t rain, and convinced me of the CC terrace for cocktails (which turned out lovely). I expressed how disappointed I was with their taking 3 weddings, and that I felt their resort was too small for that many. She told me that “they†want them to start taking FOUR WEDDINGS a day, and said they never said they just take 2 weddings/day. I distinctly remember being told I couldnâ€t have our original requested date (6/20/09) because there were already 2 weddings.

Anyway, to make me happier about the venues I was basically forced to choose, she assured me that the Relax Pool would be well lighted (they provided floor bag/candles and tiki torches for free), and extended our cocktail hour to 1.5 hours and the mariachi band (which we didnâ€t get in the end) to play for one full hour instead of 45 minutes. These concessions made me feel slightly better, but I was still unhappy that my reception was going to overlook another wedding, and that I had no real rain options because they refused to close the SSG. Overall, I just felt like we were being treated like we were not a priority, despite the fact that we were the largest wedding that day, and brought 44 guests to their resort. I felt like it didnâ€t matter at all to them.

Overall, this resort is TOO small for three weddings. It seems like they are willing to confirm locations for some people ahead of time, but not for others. So, when you get to the resort, you are at their mercy to accept whatever options they give you. If the weather for our day had turned out fine, this would have been ok. But – it didnâ€t, and they were busting at the seams because of this.

Another thing that was wrong was our contract. There were so many mistakes in it –they had definitely just taken someone elseâ€s contract and didnâ€t change it adequately. We were being charged for things that we didnâ€t have (e.g., bridesmaids bouquets) and not charged for things we should have been (e.g., meals for our guests beyond the 20 in the package). When we showed Anabel these mistakes, she came back with another contract that still had mistakes. Look at it with a fine toothed comb!

Lastly, they were just disorganized when it came to our wedding details. I would recommend printing out all of your communication with the wedding department. They just didnâ€t seem to have anything that I had sent them ahead of time. We basically made and re-made all of our decisions there, despite my efforts to do things ahead of time. They will not remember anything youâ€ve already told them – so cover EVERYTHING again, even if you feel like the matter is closed (Preview: see my ceremony section of this review).



I had told the wedding coordinators a couple months before our wedding that we wanted to do a welcome dinner for all of our guests, and Aurora recommended setting up tables at the resortâ€s Caribbean party the night before our wedding. It was a great time. They reserved the front tables for the 42 of us, and we were right up front for the show later in the night. The food was great and there was a huge selection of dishes. The party entertainment included an extremely long childrenâ€s show (I swear it lasted an hour+), followed by a fire show, which was awesome (also about an hour). The fire dancers were great –they did some really cool stuff (e.g., hula-hooping with fire rings). Our guests really enjoyed it! I would definitely recommend this option for a Welcome Dinner to other brides.



My wedding was scheduled for 5pm, and we were taking pictures beforehand, so I made my first appointment for 11:30 – first a manicure, then hair and makeup. They told me to allot 2 hours for hair and makeup, and 30 minutes for nails.

My manicure was good enough from a distance, but up close was flawed. I made manicure appointments for 4 of my friends while I was there, and was told that their manicures did not last very long at all (approx. a day).

Angelica (I think) did my hair and makeup. I had brought in pictures of hair that I liked and showed her them. She didnâ€t seem to speak very good English because she didnâ€t say much about them, and just started styling my hair. Anabel delivered flowers for my hair to the spa while I was in the chair, so her timing was great. I chose little orchids - a great option compared to a lily b/c I do not have a lot of hair. In the end, I really liked my hair and was impressed that they could do so much with it even though it is only shoulder length. In hindsight, I wished I would have insisted that she cut my bangs (she said theyâ€d be fine) b/c I ended up having to pull them back – the wind kept blowing them in my face and they were too long for that. The rest of it held really well in the wind.

I was very disappointed with my makeup. I told her that I wanted it to look natural, and when I got up to look at it in natural lighting, it was 80â€s pink all over my eyelids (from my lashes to brows). Then, I noticed that she had already put her next client (someoneâ€s bridesmaid), in my chair and had already begun working on her before I had even given the ok! I still had her try and fix it. It ended up less pink, but just much darker overall than I normally wear. My dark circles were also not well covered. I kind of felt rushed considering that she had already given my chair away, so I ended up leaving without really liking it. I tried to fix it in my room, but I wasnâ€t really equipped to do so. This is one of the things that I am most annoyed about in hindsight, and regret not speaking up more in the spa.



I had emailed pictures of my ideal bouquet and centerpieces to the WCs ahead of time in the wedding information form and they didnâ€t do anything with that until I got to the resort. Anabel told me that the flowers I was asking for in my bouquet were expensive, so I told her that the florist could use whatever was closest. I ended up really like my bouquet, but it was a bit smaller than I was planning for. My centerpieces, however, I LOVED. We wanted them to be more plants than flowers, so we also told Anabel that the price of $65 for a centerpiece of mostly grasses was outrageous, so she got another quote from the florist of $35 each. The groomâ€s boutonnière looked great, too.



This is another example of the wedding coordinators†poor communication and struggle with the volume of weddings they take. We contacted the resort ahead of time to obtain a copy of the symbolic ceremony script because we had heard that it is very religious and my fiancé and I are not very religious at all. We were told to contact the minister Francisco Flores (Kiko) by email. We did so, and had an entire email conversation with him. He suggested that we write our own ceremony. We went to a bookstore all day, looked through a ton of books, and created our ceremony from scratch. We loved it – we felt that it represented us really well, and included our guests (it had a declaration of support from them, and also thanked them or coming, etc.). We also wrote our own vows. We put everything in an email and sent it to Kiko. He replied with “The program is beautiful, we will honor it just as it is. If there are any changes, please let me know.†Well, we brought a copy of the ceremony to the resort with us (just in case). When we told Anabel we had written our ceremony, she didnâ€t request a copy of it. Since we had discussed it with our minister directly, we didnâ€t think anything of this.

Well, when we got to our ceremony, our minister (who we later learned was not Kiko) opened with a prayer and proceeded to deliver a highly religious ceremony! We had no idea what to do. We just kept looking at each other, and looking at him and finally we decided to just roll with it. What I donâ€t understand, however, is that this man knew that we wrote our own vows (which, THANKFULLY, we did have with us). I canâ€t figure out how he knew that we wrote our own vows, but not our ceremony. So, instead of hearing the highly meaningful, personal ceremony that I waited 10 years (yes, that is how long Iâ€ve been dating my fiancé) to hear on my wedding day, I got there and listened to a ceremony that couldnâ€t have been LESS representative to our relationship. At least we got to say our vows, which were highly meaningful to us. When it came to the rings, he handed us the microphone as if we had a special pre-written message for these, but we had no idea what to say b/c we hadnâ€t brought that with us. At this point, I told him that we wrote our own ceremony, and he said he had no idea. Then, I told him that we didnâ€t have anything with us to say during the rings and he didnâ€t do anything. Finally, my fiancé grabbed the microphone and made something up, “I give you this ring as a sign…†and I just repeated it when it was my turn.

As you can imagine, this is the thing that I am most upset about regarding our wedding. One of the reasons that we decided to have a non-traditional wedding ceremony is that we are not very religious people. At one point during the ceremony, I even considered stopping the minister and running out of my wedding ceremony to my room to get the copy of our script. The only reason I didnâ€t is because I felt like people would think I was a run-away bride! My point is that these are the thoughts that I was having during my wedding ceremony – which is just about the last thing you want to be thinking about while you are standing there with your fiancé, in front of all of your friends and family.



We had our cocktail hour on the convention center terrace, which turned out to be an amazing location despite its distance from the ceremony and reception. It is beautiful and private (b/c it is a pretty secluded part of the resort). It is also a good rain location for cocktails (if you need one) b/c it is covered.

Even though I loved it, I should mention that it was essentially the only location option we were given (as the other locations were taken by other two brides who were all having their events around the same time as us). We had requested an indoor venue with air conditioning for the cocktail hour to give our guests a break from the heat and were told that there were no indoor options. However, Anabel promised that she would have the air conditioning in the convention center turned on so that guests could go inside if they were too hot. Of course, we got there and the a/c was definitely not on. I suppose this is one time to be happy that our day wasnâ€t sunny, but still - it was another problem.

My husband and I had also had the mariachi band scheduled for our cocktail hour, and were very excited about this. Of course, when we got there, we had the Caribbean trio instead. When I told Anabel that they were supposed to be the mariachi band, she seemed totally confused about this - despite the fact that we had talked at length about the mariachi band during our wedding planning session with her and Landy. During that meeting, the mariachi band had come up a few times, including when we discussed extending their play time, and another time when I corrected the fact that our contract said Caribbean trio. Another thing to mention is that they only served champagne. I didnâ€t know that it was a champagne only reception, so this was slightly surprising to me.

Our cocktail hour was extended to 1.5 hours. This was a concession on Landyâ€s part because we got so upset during our meeting with Anabel about the fact that there were three weddings, no available location options for our events, and that we were being treated like our wedding was not a priority in general. So, our timing was such that we had our wedding at 5, our cocktail hour from 6-7:30, and our reception from 7:30 to 10:30. This timing was great for our time of year because at 7:30, the sun was beginning to set and sky was gorgeous. So, we left our cocktail hour a little early in order to get some sunset pictures on the beach without having to miss any of our events.

Lastly, we had brought our own photographer, so we chose to have the resort photographer during our cocktail hour to focus on pictures of our guests. This was a great venue to get a group picture and to get photos of you with your guests without having to feel like you are being pulled in a lot of directions instead of just enjoying the moment. This also allowed us to get pictures of our guests and the event after we left with our personal photographer. So, I would recommend doing this if you have two photographers.



Set up: A+

At 4:00 (before my 5:00 wedding) Anabel called my room to get my confirmation on whether we wanted to set up our reception in the convention center b/c it looked like rain was imminent. I just couldnâ€t do it b/c it made me so incredibly sad to plan a destination wedding for a year and then end up in a banquet hall that looked like it could be in the Chicago suburbs, so we chanced it and had her set up our only other location option they had given us – the adult/relax pool.

Anabel did a terrific job setting everything up exactly the way that we had explained it all and it really did look beautiful. One of my initial concerns with this location was that there was nowhere to hang the paper lanterns we had brought, but they found a way and it looked great. We had also brought menus, namecards, table numbers, and a few other things, and everything made it to its place perfectly. For our paper lanterns and table numbers, we had brought semi-“throwies†for lighting (diffused LED lights, and CR-2032 batteries taped together and binder clipped together) that needed to be assembled. We had planned to assemble these ourselves, but Anabel told us that she could do it, and surely enough, she had done it exactly right – which was a lot of work! We were very appreciative of this.

We had also expressed our concern with the lighting of this location because it is very dark. So, the WC had bright lights in the trees shining down (which our photographer hated, as they caused big shadows), paper bags with lights in them on the ground, and our paper lanterns. Overall, it was a bit darker than I wanted.


Food: A+

All of the wedding food was delicious – the best food I had at the resort. We chose the Gold menuâ€s bruschetta with proscuitto, the citrus salad, the surf & turf and the salmon (we had 2 entrees), and the fruit tart for dessert. Our chocolate cake wasnâ€t very pretty, but it tasted great.


Dinner: C

Because of the coming rain, Anabel said that she would tell them to serve dinner quickly but it still took over an hour, and they waited to start serving everything until people had sat down, so it went a little bit slower than we wanted. The bride and groom had also not received our meal when most of our guests had finished eating, which delayed us getting our dance started early. One of our guests had to go ask for us to get our meals.

It drizzled a couple times during dinner, but we kept on because it went away quickly. Finally, it just down-poured right after we finished our first dance. The rain stopped after about 10 minutes, but it had destroyed our paper lanterns (although the LED lights were still glowing) and put the sound equipment at risk because there were exposed cables and power strips involved. (We had just been using our own ipod, but the resorts sound equipment). So, we were told that we couldnâ€t continue if it kept raining, but that another wedding taking place in El Patio was wrapping up, and we could relocate in there. Well, that wedding was taking longer than Anabel expected, so our party was kind of split at that point for awhile – some of us were in the Sugar Reef bar, and some of us were back by the Relax Pool dancing a bit more. They started to clear our wedding stuff (tables, etc.) away, but never put everything (e.g., sound equipment) in El Patio even after the other wedding had left, so really everything was just shut down. We eventually went to the disco. Despite the chaos of all of this, we were having a great time. Some of our guests jumped in the pool, and we were just eating the cake right off its platter with forks (one of our guests had saved it from the rain).

Overall, we know that we chose to brave the rain, but would have liked to be more apprised of the rain plan. In hindsight, we also would have probably done our first dance earlier if we had known that dinner was, indeed, still going to go slowly.


The disco: A

We had a great time in there. They let us put our ipod in and play some of the music that we had brought for our reception. The music they were playing was great, too. The bar service there was really good, and we all just danced the night away.



Josh Stephenson of Leografia Images leografia Images :

Experience working with him: A++, Picture rating still to come!

We hired our own photographer because we really wanted a good photojournalist. He was with us on Friday for the Welcome Dinner in addition to the entire day of our wedding (from my manicure appointment to after midnight at the disco). We have not gotten our pictures yet, but our experience working with him was outstanding. He was incredibly nice, so flexible, funny, and friendly during our entire experience working with him. All of our guests enjoyed him and commented at how good at being invisible he seemed to be. He worked his butt off – especially when our reception just turned into chaos! We felt so comfortable with him and are just so excited to see our pictures! Weâ€ll post them as soon as we have them.

He has impressed us from our initial of our inquiry to him. One of the things that sold us on him was how he discussed that he prefers coming in the night before a wedding so that the bride, groom, and guests get comfortable with having him around and therefore, allow for more natural photos on the big day. We really liked that insight, and booked him.


Frederico the Resort Photographer: A for entertainment value, B- for pictures

We were told that we could not exchange the value of the resort photographer in our ultimate wedding package for anything else. We wanted to use him for a trash the dress session, but were told that such sessions are so “artistic†that they cannot possibly give us that value for the package price. Ridiculous. So, we just used him for the cocktail hour. Josh met with the resort photographer beforehand and hashed out the details of what we wanted – Josh was to focus on pictures of us, and the resort photographer was to focus on pictures of our guests. Again – Josh was so great for handling that for us. It was one last thing I didnâ€t have to deal with on Saturday.

In the end, Frederico was very entertaining. Some of my favorite pictures so far are the ones my guests took of him photographing others. He was very engaging to our guests and since our friends are a ton of fun and able to roll with this kind of thing, we got some funny pictures. In general, the pictures he took were pretty good – we like them well enough. It was a lot of posed shots of our guests and a few candids.

It was nice to get them before we left. They were totally unwilling to negotiate on prices beyond what was in our package (50 pics, digital and printed), so we just stuck with that.



We didnâ€t have much time before the ceremony after we were finished taking our professional photos, so the resort videographer doesnâ€t have all that much good footage of us. The first 10 minutes of our wedding video is footage of the resort, which is cloudy and wet, so we knew it wasnâ€t stock footage.  The rest of it is shaky and just shows us getting ready to leave for our ceremony, including some cheesy pans from our feet to our heads. He didnâ€t speak very good English, so my fiancé had to talk to him in Spanish to understand what he wanted us to do.

His coverage of the ceremony is fine – you can definitely see the surprise in our faces during the sermon. He was also a little close for comfort during it. The sound is good, though.

The editing of the video is okay; itâ€s a little choppy, and the music is hilarious. It goes from a rock song to Ave Maria, to Jason Mraz. Overall, the video is what we expected based on other reviews. It was a little cheesy and of decent quality. Weâ€re happy to have a video of the whole thing, though.



We wanted to plan a trip for our group to go to the Tulum Ruins on Sunday (day after our wedding). When we got there, we talked to an AMResorts rep about our options for a group trip. She was salesy, and said she really couldnâ€t get the trip to less than $34usd per person. This was WAY more than we wanted to spend, so we ended up talking to the Apple Vacations rep also. We talked to one Apple guy there, Fernando, who was helpful and quoted us a better deal. We told him that weâ€d get back to him. Then, the next day, I got a call from a different Apple rep at the resort (Sustenance) who said he could get me a good deal. We were confused by this because we had already talked with someone, so we stopped by just to see what he was talking about. Sustenance said he could get us a better deal and would check with his boss about quotes. We were supposed to stop by and see what the quote was. We didnâ€t end up going back because we decided we were probably just not going to organize something formal.

Well, the next day, we found out that from one of our friends that Sustenance had Apple put messages under our guests†doors saying that WE organized a group trip to the Tulum Ruins through Apple for $51usd/person and that they should come RSVP to Sustenance directly and submit payment! This infuriated us for a number of reasons. We DID NOT plan that, would have never given into that price, and planned to cover the cost of the trip for our guests, anyway. This was horribly annoying. Thankfully, a few of our guests who had paid the fee were able to get it back.

The weather was horrible on Sunday, so we ended up with a smaller group at the ruins (about 30). My husband and I just paid for all of our guests to take cabs there to the site and then our guests just paid the entrance fees. We had to wait for awhile for cabs and vans for our size group, so the group ended up arriving at disparate times, and therefore walked around in smaller groups, and people just left when they wanted to. It was ridiculously hot there, but the ruins were cool and the beach there was lovely and not rocky at all. Doing the trip this way was a lot cheaper (its about $14 round trip for a cab (that holds 4+ people), and it only cost 51 pesos (about $5usd/person) to get in. So, I would recommend skipping the formal organized trip. They just seemed way overpriced.



For all of the hard work that we put into our wedding, Iâ€m not sure that I would pick DT again. Between the closure, the swine flu, the disorganization, and poor communication with and between the wedding coordinators, planning was extremely difficult, and I really would have liked fewer things to go wrong on our actual day. I knew not to expect perfection, but it was almost comical the number of things that went wrong. They really didn't bother me on the day-of, but now that itâ€s over, I really do wish that things had gone more smoothly because it was so much work and it goes by so quickly. That being said, overall, despite the things that went wrong, I still had an absolutely *incredible* day. I was so happy to be getting married to my wonderful fiance amongst our amazing friends and family that my face actually hurt so much from smiling, so nothing was really going to be able to get me down that day. DT, despite its problems, is a beautiful backdrop for a wedding and everything was gorgeous. I still had a dreamy destination wedding, and will look back on it all well.


Thatâ€s all! Feel free to PM if you want any further info, Iâ€m happy to share.


Here are some pics!


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Congratulations!! your wedding looked gorgeous! I love the diff colored lanterns, so cute!

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What a detailed review, wow! I was at Dreams Tulum in april for a wedding and was surprised to hear how differently things were for you than my gf! Either way, your wedding was gorgeous, love your colors and you two look so cute and happy!! YAY! CONGRATS!

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Again, I'm sorry to hear so many things went wrong but thanks for taking the time to write a detailed review and explain what went wrong, it will be helpful for others (i.e. put a copy of your vows and/or ceremony in the groom's pocket!!!) I can't wait to see your professional pictures because the few you have posted so far look awesome, very nice reception set-up.

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    • So, this will be another one of those venting it all out topic but it won't be the last one (Well last one done by me)😂.   I got engaged back in the August bank holiday last year when covid restrictions were lifted. I knew this problem would occur so I wanted to get things rolling with my group of friends asap. I have 2 sets of friends that I plan on inviting to my DW (Next year). The first group are from the UK and the other group is from the other side of the world. Before I get started, we are planning our DW as normal with the hope that covid will be as less impact as possible. Me and my SO planned our guestlist and we would predict that there will be problems with both sides of invites. We both predicted that the UK groups would pose possible problems due to costs etc. Our other groups (Other side of the world) most of them will come barring any restrictions but all of them pretty much confirmed it. Now, this is where it gets interesting. My UK group (JAWSNA they're the initials of people within this group) posed the problem straight away when I announced that me and SO will have a DW (Even though A, A and W knew of this before I got engaged!). This group revolves around the first A and W.  A - I have known A since I first started university and it happens that A lives in the same city as me. Common sense will dictate that A will be the bestman of the wedding. Before I get started if it weren't for A then I would not have met everyone from the UK lot.Everyone knew including the test of the groomsmen knew I would ask A to be the best man. In total 3 groomsmen and a best man. I asked W to be one of the groomsmen and he gladly accepted it. The other 2 spaces were filled up by 2 people from the other side of the world group which means all I had to do is ask A to be the best man.  So forward 2 weeks after I got engaged I asked him. At first he paused for a few seconds then A went onto say "I feel the other 2 (Referring the 2 people that I asked to be part of the groomsmen from the other side of the world group) are better placed to be your best man because I feel suitable". When I heard that my heart literally stopped. He then went onto say "If the other 2 are still not up for it according to you then I will be your best man". That was the first warning sign. I didn't say much to A the following few days but I was adamant that A will be my best man. Ovdr the next month or so I kept at it to the point when he said "Sorry I do not want to be your best man so you can now do that 'group' you kept on saying" (Referring to my earlier point where I knew this will be a problem.  Things calmed down and he said that "We will have a heart to heart talk about your situation and will talk about the best man position" right until this day I have been waiting to see him in person. I know there wete 2 lockdowns but at the same time before the lockdowns occured couldn't A find the time even for an hour to talk about this? He said he wanted to do this face to face which is why he does not want to have this conversation over the phone but it's very hard considering we're still coming out of lockdown and easing of restrictions. This is where things take for the worse. From last February I kept in contact with A with everything and I let it slip that out DE will be next year. He went into a rant where he was "shocked" to find out that the DW was happening next year and warned me if I do not have a clear concise figure then people from the UK will not out effort into the DW. This is where I started a group from my side of the guest lists with the UK group and the Other side of the world group and effectively telling both sides of the group that DW will happen next year at this location (I do not want to disclose the location so I can remain as anonymous as possible). The other side of the group all confirmed they are going and this is where the UK group start to say their views. S and W sugfested that I was "loaded with money" whereas A start to say that I needed really clear figures otherwise people will not turn up. Ever since A messages that text the group has been stone called silent. A is literally impossible to get a hold off. I live really close to him yet he always has excuses to why he is not free. These ranges from "I have been getting a property", "Lifes busy man" or "Work gets in the way". Because of these lists of excuses I started to question whether I want him to be the groomsmen or not. He keeps on making excuses and I even tried to lie to him I was down the road from him to which he said "I have to get this furniture in place, watch the football then I need to get to bed by 9:30 pm)." I will invite him to the wedding but at the same time serious doubts are there whether I should or not and regarding the groomsmen? I don't even know because of all these doubts. To make things worse, A's girlfriend is a makeup artist and for obvious reasons A will have her as a plus one if he was a groomsmen. My SO reached out to her asking for a price to be my SO's MUA. A's girlfriend tried to make my SO to pay for her travel and flight costs along with her rates as the make up artists for the day. When this failed, A's girlfriend then mentioned that she looked at the costs and flight and it would be very costly for her. Then she made the point that she does not want to travel currently due to covid and wouldn't know if it's safe or not so my SO should reach out to her later down the year to seek clarity. Needless to say this is the works of A because this is something he would do so A must have taught his girlfriend to try and get a holiday out of my SO. A keeps on saying that I am.mkte financially stable than a lot of people throughout. This may be true but at the same time I have had to save and budget out money throughout my life so I do not see a major problem although I do understand where A is coming from. That's it for now for A. We move onto W who has been unsupportive but not to A's scale. W - as I have mentioned he is the other person I asked to be the groomsmen. Unlike A, W accepted straight away. I told him that the wedding would be abroad back in September and he was excited about this. Fast forward late February where I made the group telling people that it will be a DW, I felt something was wrong with him. I called him up a week later to which he said "I'm not going to lie, it seems pretty expensive. I have been saving up for a holiday since 2019 with a couple of the lads in the UK group. The destination we are going? It is a lot more less expensive than your DW. We wil be going to this destination for 2 weeks whereas for your DW it is for a week. Not to mention the costs. Before I step foot at the location of your DW I would need to spend hundreds of pounds before stepping into it. Not to mention the petrol costs and the car parking costs. I also have a plus one, that will be double. I can get off work for a week and wouldn't need to spend that much money on flights to your DW. If we did something in the UK you would receive a larger wedding gift and I still wouldn't be anywhere near your figure. What happens if S said "We not going to your DW but we will celebrate your wedding before you set off?" That would mean everyone from the UK group will stay here to celebrate with you but not come to your wedding." At first I didn't think much of W's comments. But the longer it went his comments infuriated me. I have been transparent from the first day I understand that costs for my DW will be a problem for some but it feels like I am forcing them to my DW at this point. S - probably the most sensible one out of everyone. He said he will try his best with his wife to save as much money as possible. It will be a test because he has a lot of things to pay for (But don't we all?). He is one of the ones who had supported me more than the others. He did mention that if the UK lot cannot make it they will do something to make it up to me. Nice gesture because A and W never thought of this. N - he is a nice guy because he is someone who I can talk. However I felt that he will be the first ones to drop out for my DW because he is less financially stable compared to the others. J - quiet throughout. Hasn't said a word to me. Thinking the same as everyone else and moaning about my DW. A2 - Ah, the second A. A2 has been one of the most supportive person throughout. I understand that he will probably drop out because he is the only person working from his family and money is hard to come by. He can even see that A has been very unsupportive. If he drops out I will not have a problem with him. He would have like to come but at the same time I know it will be very difficult for him because A2 and his wife wilk struggle to save up. I have already prepared my Plan B. Unfortunately I would like to not to use plan B but hearing from the consistent moaning of A and W's comments made me do this. I am planning for the worse and everyone from the UK group will drop out which is why I am ready to execute plan B. Forgot to mention. My SO's UK lot? We both feared it would have ended up the same situation as my side but to our pleasant surprise all of them confirmed they were coming! We were shocked to find out they are already booking that week off to celebrate our wedding! To make things worse, my SO's UK group's salary are a lot lower than my UK group yet her UK group can make it? Time to evaluate the friendship of my UK group!!!   /Rant over
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    • Hi girl, I was in the the exact same situation as you. I’ was a second timer too,  at the time my daughter was 16 when we had our DW. He also had a daughter from a previous marriage who was 28 at the time with a 3 year old son who we’re residing with us. His daughter was in no financial shape whatsoever to pay her way to Fiji. My husband said it meant so much to him for her to be there. We argued for months about us funding her way to go with us. I felt like the evil step mother too but put my foot down. It almost got to the point that we were just not going to go but finally my fi gave in and said we would  not pay for her. Talk about stress! We went with my daughter and a few friends and got married. I could see the sadness in my husbands eyes during the ceremony.It all hit me right there. He wanted his daughter there so bad that it crushed him. In fact none of his family were there and the friends I mentioned were all my friends. I thought to myself, why did I do this to this wonderful man who is so good to me and my daughter. He rarely asked for things for himself. I felt awful. He did his best to hide it from me. It’s the biggest regret of my life girl. He never got over that his daughter was not there and it destroyed me. I wish I could go back in time and do it all over again. I allowed $3,500 that we easily could afford, ruin what I wanted to be the happiest day of his life. If you can afford it pay for it, do it. It’s not worth the pain.It was  not worth doing that to him just to prove a point. This was 17 years ago and it bothered him for the rest of his life. He passed away last October and I still cannot forgive myself. That’s my two cents - Shel  
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