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Any Gran Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Brides out there?

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Originally Posted by pask454 View Post


Okay here we go.

We booked with Transat Holidays, and flew with CanJet. Everything was awesome, we got a few perks, like priority boarding, free drinks, champange etc. When we landed in Montego Bay, we got on a shuttle provided by Transat, and on our way there, they check you in to the hotel. So on the bus, you already get your room key/map/etc....TIP - they say water & electronics de-activate your room keys (it did happen) When we got to the hotel, we went straight to the rooms. We were in room 18524 (building 18, 5th floor, 24th room) The rest of our party were close by, down the hall or next floor down. Lucky us -- we were beside my father in law, and mother in law :| oh gawd.

The rooms are pretty good, a few problems, but nothing major. Heads up, the shower drains extremely slow...we found out the day before leaving, there is a “cup†inside the drain that is suppose to be there, so if your not to grossed out, before you shower you can pull it out so it drains fast, then when your done put it back in. I think it helps with keeping that sewer smell down. Our toilet never leaked, but it did run all night...not loud, just trickling water. Our room had an alarm clock, but no body else had one. We just used the wake up calls anyway, and clock on the TV. (btw, channel 78 is weather) The power went out a few times while we were there, only for a minute or two.

There was a note in our room when we arrived, to meet the wedding co-ordinators in the lobby the next day. They are very nice people, we sat with Chandlyn and the other one (cant remember name! Not Donalee) They will go through step by step instructions, ask how many ppl, music, menus, times etc. I gave her my bag or rocks, petals ,chair ties, picture of us, and ceremony music on a CD. She asked if I had my own photographer, I told her my “uncle†was doing it. I had all the confirmation emails with me, but didnâ€t need them.  I DID NOT pay the vendor fee for the photographer. After that, we relaxed for a few days before the wedding.

The night before the wedding, we had rehearsal with Donalee, she is also very nice. Everything went smooth, your only there for like 15 minutes, she walks you through everything.

I hired Rashel Edwards for make up and hair. She is AWESOME! I didnâ€t pay for a guest pass for her either because she was leaving the same day, right when she was done. She came to my room at 1030AM. There were 5 ladies getting hair and makeup done. We JUST made it on time.  My wedding was at 3pm. My colours were pink and orange. At 245 we met Donalee in the lobby, and she took me, bridesmaids, parents and MIL in the golf cart to the gazebo. I wrote my own wedding ceremony and the minister (??) was very good, he would goof up a little on words, but it was very natural and he was very well spoken. There was a microphone we used, and apparently everyone could hear us fine (VERY windy that day). After the ceremony they hand out champagne off to the side. We just had the “DJ†play out our CD, as we put some songs on there purposely for this.

We had enough time to take pictures after ceremony. Dinner was at 6 at the Dolce Vita. They were kinda slow getting food out.but it was delicious, and we found it pretty warm in there. Luckly, there was NO ONE else in the restaurant for some reason, so it was perfect to do speeches! The cake was very nice, and DELICIOUS. I asked for vanilla, but got vanilla with some sort of strawberry or something, but it was great, everyone loved it. They give you a cake knife etc. Then they will serve it to your guests, with regular dessert as well.

We rented the gazebo and DJ for 830-1030. This was the highlight of the trip. The DJ is awesome, and knew everything we wanted to hear. It was perfect. During this time, we brought sky lanterns down and set these off, it was great. (if u have these, tell ur guests to b patient while it fills with air...it takes a few minutes) some of ours crashed and burned. We had Donalee set up a table with ice, cups and a cooler. We also asked her to sneak some jugs of rum punch (we had 2 huge jugs) we also had our guests collect extra beer from there room fridge and bring it down that night, as well as pop and water...it was more then enough! The bar IS very far away from the gazebo.

It was a great night. Perfect! Relax and enjoy.


We did the Karanda Tours Party Cruise – this was another highlight of the trip. EVERYONE loved it. Cool Runnings is the same company, different vendor. Anyways, takes you to Dunns River, and snorkelling. You never have an empty glass, this was amazing. I recommend it for your group, you also get a group discount – we each paid 83 dollars US, and there were 34 of us. A few randoms came on the boat with us, but we were majority. Have your cameras ready, because they have photographers on the boat, they take good shots, but they make u pay an arm and a leg for one picture to b printed, so have someone get the shots.

My parents went on the Mystic mountain tour and said it was awesome too! We just stayed and relaxed most days.

The day after our wedding, we went off resort with our photog and hired Kevin Morrison to drive us around. It was his partner that ended up taking us, but he knew exactly where to go. Bring some money with you if you do this, we were taken to the Botanical Gardens ($10 pp), Fern Gulley (not much here..) and a little Dunns River Falls...its a place off to the side, perfect spot. Bring tip money for the people there, they treat you like royalty (very cute). We also stopped on the side of the road and got pictures at a broken down wheel house...very awesome. While driving around, the driver was telling us everything about the area, so its like your own mini tour.

Im not a big drinker, but I will let you know some amazing drinks. The Bahia , the Guacamaya (like juice!), Tropical Sunset...and there is a drink of the day, these are usually pretty good.

We had dinner at The Grill for our “welcome†dinner for 36 of us – it was really good, again, with that many people they have you make a set menu for everyone. We just went with mixed grill so it pleased everyone, the other options are all seafood.

We had rehearsal dinner at the Japanese Rest. And it was amazing. So much fun. It was perfect for that night, as the table only seats 12, if you want the “show†(which you do..) GET THE DEEP FRIED ICE CREAM!

The Don Pablo was our favourite. We went the night after our wedding, just the two of us. The Brie is great!!!! And my husband said the Prince & Princess is great, (surf and turf). I had spinach ravioli – soooo good!!!!

Try the donuts at breakfast, in the buffet (the big buffet is much better then the small), they go like hot cakes there!!!

Anything else, feel free to ask! I love being able to answer questions now! I canâ€t believe its over!

Huge Tip – My mom told me as I was approaching the gazebo, take everything in..everything. Take your time to look at everyone and everything around you while youâ€re walking, and while youâ€re up there. It goes by super fast, just soak it in!!!!!


Pask454 - Congratulations...sounds like you had a fantastic wedding. Thank you so much for sharing your experience with us.  I understand know what you mean about the photographer and I'll just have to hope they aren't like that on my day...if not my fiancee will have a few choice words for them! lol....surely if we are paying them they should do as we ask and if we say they are invading our private space too much they should respect that!?! Unfortunately we do not have anyone going that I feel would be able to take professional photos for us...

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Also, we are going back and forth with whether or not we want to rent the DJ. Can you tell me how he made the experience so enjoyable?! Chandlyn said he has a microphone, but doesn't talk into it and just plays the music that you want. I just want to know about your experience with the DJ. We aren't going to have a bartender anymore either. I like your idea of what you did. Was it that hard to get the juices/ice/cups etc? Thanks!

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Originally Posted by SarahJ View Post



I keep having bad dreams about it....I turn up and I havent got my dress, my hair, make-up and nails arent done etc etc....so hearing your experience hopefully will help me to relax more subconsiously....I think thats a nice touch that strangers congratulate you....I  hope I feel as special as you did..smile159.gifI like the way the table was laid out for your reception.  We only have 12 guests joining us so I think they will probably put us all on the one table too.  Was yours in the Dolce Vita?

I hope you do feel as special as I did! It really is a great day where you should be so special! 


We were at the Grill for our reception.

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FutureKeese - The DJ made the night at the gazebo! We rented it for 830, and he was there, already set up for it. While we were walking up to the gazebo, all you could here was bass! It was so exciting.  He has a labtop set up with a microphone and a big speaker....he played all the "in" songs right now, and people were asking him for requests, and he had most of them...a lot were the party songs, and typical wedding reception songs, like 'old time rock n roll' etc. We didnt have a first dance or father/daughter...so if you want that, I would bring your own just in case he doesnt have them.

At one point, the DJ was playing songs that I wasnt fond of, or didn't know, like techno, so we simply just asked him for pop/rap, and he was awesome! He doesnt use the microphone, but we did a couple times...like to announce we were setting of sky laterns, or last dance of the night.


At the meeting with Chandlyn, we asked if they could set up the table with ice, and cups, etc...and she said no problem, I think a lot of people ask for it. Then at the rehearsal, we asked if it was possible to get a jug of rum punch..or pop...or anything! She said, no problem, that she'll try her best...but its not usual.


When we got to the gazebo, there were two huge jugs of rum punch...it was great! Along with everyones beer and extra liquor, it was MORE then enough...we had soo much extra! Make sure you bring the big water bottles from your room too....it gets hot out there dancing so much!!! They also set up chairs around the gazebo for people who wanted a break. We never sat down, we only had the gazebo for 2 hours, we tried to make the best out of it! Everyone said it was the highlight of the trip.


At the end of the night, we werent sure who cleans up, so a bunch of us just collected all the beer cans and cups, and cleaned up....they left clear bags, and a box...so we just quickly seperated garbage/recyling. It was windy, so we didnt want them flying all over the beach...

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Hello! So glad to hear all these great experiences at the bahia principe. I was planning a weddig at home for july 2013...so many things just weren't working out so my fiance I decided to do it in Jamaica. Hes kind of a cheap man lol wants to stick with the basics. Our wedding is going to be December 2013 its booked, not sure our exact guest list. Not getting many reply's at the moment from the wedding coordinators for some questions I've had. We want it to be a great experience for us and our guests however we need to keep it fairly cheap. Any suggestions on what restaurant to make group reservations at, how to go about planning such, do I book now or when I get to resort? I'm getting excited, even though its still 11 months away.


Also is there a way to see others wedding pics from resort?

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Hi Ladies,


I'm just planning on getting the bridal party's hair and make-up done at the resort using the people at their spa. Can anyone provide reviews on how hair and make-up turned out using them? 



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So I just heard from Chandlyn (after three weeks). I had to call Jamaica and get in touch with her. I have read all the pages on this blog now and I am so happy to have so many questions answered. Reading everyones reviews I have booked the Dolce Vita for reception dinner, the Dj and Gazebo for reception dance/ party and the wedding Gazebo with steel pan option. Has anyone here payed for the 'Unforgettable Package?" I just wanted to know if those little perks were worth the extra $900?


I also wanted to ask about the menu options for Dolce Vita. I read on the earlier posts and the menu selections got very mixed reviews. Hopefully a bride who was there recently can help me out.


I am looking to add in a group excursion as a Thank you gift for my guests before they leave. Any reccomendations on a package? or group discounts? Is it best to this through hotel? or contact the excursion group directly to get a good deal?



Any response would help!


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Samantha -- I had the Dolce Vita for my reception dinner, it was great! I had my welcome dinner at The Grill, and my rehersal dinner at the Japanese Restaurant (only fits 12 at the table they cook in front of you). You have to book your dinners closer to the date. They wouldnt book mine until the week before I left for Jamaica, although they will book your reception dinner in advance, but it still takes a while.


Lisa -- The menu for the Dolce Vita was good in my opinion, I forget everything that was the options, but I can tell you my menu so you can get an idea of what types of things they have. We started with Tomato Basil soup & croutons, then had Spinach Ravioli, then we chose chicken with a bacon and walnut sauce (with potato and veg), then for dessert we had a cream puff like thing, along with our wedding cake.


We went on the Karanda Tour, the Catamaran excursion that takes you snorkelling, Dunns River, then party on the way back. Its an affiliate of Cool Runnings, so you do the exact same thing on the same boat,  but I beleive that Karanda Tours was a bit cheaper. You get a discount rate. I emailed them before hand. Let them know your a wedding group..they will take pictures for you (although to buy is expensive) and we got one of the "smaller" (still big) boats, that fit 34 of my wedding group along with 8 other people that werent with us, which was better than an extra 50 people we dont know.


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Samantha262-Your Fiance sounds like my husband, cheap!  That is why we chose this resort and went with the free wedding package.  It is a great package to use if you are having a small number of guests and don't care about all those little extras involved in the other packages.


MrsViolo- I had my hair and makeup done at the resort spa and I was really happy with the way it turned out.  I didn't use the included hair trial as I didnt want to waste one of my afternoons in the spa getting my hair done.  I brought pictures of the way I wanted my hair and they basically recreated it.  I was really worried about my hair holding curls in the humidty as I can never get it to stay curled in Canada but they have this amazing spray, they call it cement spray, which really held my hair all day.  As to my makeup I don't normally wear a lot of makeup so I wanted something simple and neutral.  I told her this and she did a fantastic job.  My makeup lasted all day long and looked great.  Overall, I was really happy with the work they did.


Lisa K- What we did was looked at all the packages and tried to decide if the extra money was worth it.  In the end most of the packages include the same things with a few differences.  We found the differences didn't add up to the extra money and would be cheaper to go with the free package and pay for the extras we wanted.  I suggest you compare them closely to decide if the extra money you are paying is worth the price.


We didn't do a lot of excursions while we were there.  We went to Dunns River Falls as a group which everyone loved and the younger group of us went to Mystic Mountain where we did the ziplining/bobsledding/watersliding.  We loved Mystic Mountain and had a great time, but it was pretty expensive.  I think we payed $40 per person for Dunns River Falls and $130 per person for Mystic Mountain.

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