Congrats Krista!! I'm so happy it all worked out for you!! It sounds like you had a fabulous wedding. I sent you a text but I think you had already left the country by then, so I hope you still got it!! Can't wait to see your pics!! I don't generally stop here anymore, but I knew your wedding was coming up so I wanted to see how things had gone.
We're almost 8 months married now and are going back to the resort in October for our first anniversary. I can't wait. I still look back on our pics and love them. Our photographer did a wonderful job. All the reviews about Stacey on this site were great so I'm sure your photos will be fabulous!
Originally Posted by Kristo
Ok here it is.. my review.. FINALLY!! Sorry for the delay!
Let me first say that no matter what happens while you're down there, or how stressed you might get, you're going to have a perfect day! Even if something is slightly off, it won't matter, because you're marrying the man of your dreams!
We met with Chandlyn two days after arriving. Meeting with her was great, but it seemed VERY rushed and a little chaotic. We were literally sitting in the lobby, going through our suitcase of all the wedding stuff we brought down and pointing out what we wanted done with everything. She made notes, asked questions when needed but never looked stressed of frazzled (like we did!). So after a 20-30 minute meeting, we walked away a lil worried and questioning whether it would all work out the way we planned it in our heads.
She did have to look into a couple things and get back to us on some questions and requests we had. She had the wrong a la carte booked for us in her notes, so she was checking on the Dolce Vita for us. And she had mentioned the $250 fee that all brides are being charged and we questioned it as we had never received ANY communication from them regarding that. (We later found out that she had emailed the communication to an incorrect email address, but they wouldn't budge on it, and basically told us that we had to pay it if we wanted to get married).
We had purchased the Unforgettable package. We chose that package mainly because we were having 31 people so it worked out cheaper. There were some freebies thrown in that we never received (romantic dinner for two, Jacuzzi at the spa and a couple other small things) because of conflicts and the wedding coordinators not getting back to us or returning phone calls.
I had my hair trial the day before the wedding and took my ipad in with a picture of what I wanted. She pretty much recreated the style I wanted and I was VERY happy with it. She did my makeup as well, and I'm very picky but it turned out ok. I ended up going back to my room and adding to it a bit and was happy with the outcome.
The day of the wedding, I went down with my bridesmaids and we all got our hair done. They did the same to my hair again, and added some fresh flowers free of charge. I had brought a fake flower that I wanted put in my hair but she opted in putting in fresh orchids and they looked amazing! Also, their hairspray is truly AMAZING!! Ladies, you'll have nothing to worry about. I got married on a windy day and it still didn't budge!!!
Went back up to my room and started getting ready. I was sooo excited, not nervous at all! I hadn't seen my fianc© since the night before and I was just so excited to see him and tell him everything that I've experienced! I think the best feeling in the world is walking down from your room to the front lobby where they pick you up with the golf cart! Everyone stares, wishes you good luck and tells you how pretty you look! That's such a confidence boost right before your special moment! So we got taken down to the gazebo (oh and I forgot to mention, they threw in the steel drum band for free for us. We brought steel drum music to play and to walk down the aisle to but the band played music till we arrived, and then played after while we had champagne and took pictures!) and it was nice and cool and windy. It was challenging on those stairs, so I would advise you ladies in heels to try it out a couple times in the week before you actually walk down in your dress. The walk is long but before you know it, you're at the gazebo, with your friends and family looking on and your husband-to-be waiting to take you into the gazebo.
The whole thing was magical! I just couldn't stop smiling!!! I don't think I've ever felt love so strong, right in that exact moment! My fianc© just stood there, holding my hands and smiling, he was giddy!! All he could say to me was "Wow!"
The ceremony itself was good, the minister read what we asked him to read, and we did the sand ceremony as well. Right after the sand ceremony my sister told me there was a rainbow in the sky, and it was the first one we saw all week long. The rainbow was so symbolic for me as my Mom had passed away six years ago and it broke my heart that she wasn't with me on my special day. But she truly was, as the rainbow appeared and a list misting of rain fell. It was a magical moment that everyone noticed and my photographers caught on camera!
Aside from the photographer we hired (Stacey Clarke Photography was AMAZING and I would strongly recommend her to anyone! Google herâ€¦ she is so friendly, and so accommodating! Her packages were too high for our budget so I told her what we COULD afford and she worked within it. We got her from 3:30-6pm on the wedding day and 1.5 hours the following morning for TTD - all for $850!!) we also had the resort photographer (which we received 15 photos from - they aren't bad at all, see some of them below) and my bridesmaids husband did the rest of the photography for us. So we were WELL covered the whole day! I haven't gotten anything back from Stacey yet, so all the pics I have are from the resort and my friends husband. And if these pics are any indication on what my professional pics will look like, I can't wait!!!!
After many congrats and pictures we went to the Dolce Vita for our reception dinner. It was just perfect! Private room, overlooking the ocean, but there were a few mosquitoes. Our dinner was lovely, and very yummy and in between courses we did speeches. It was the perfect sized room for 31 people with a head table and 3 tables full of our guests. We cut our cake, which was delicious and looked a lot better than some previous brides cakes, so I was quite happy. We also set up our fingerprint tree in there and all our guests left behind their fingerprint and their name on the tree.
After the dinner we all headed back down to the gazebo for the party! We didn't hire the dj, nor did we hire a bartender. Instead we just paid the $250 for the gazebo rental and brought our ipod full of music with a special playlist for the wedding especially. Some of our friends had gone into town that morning and picked up lots of rum, vodka, beer and wine and had it all ready to go for us down there. The only problem was there was no ice (that Donnalee had promised). So after they ran back a couple times to find out where it was, they came down and delivered it to us. While we were waiting for that though we set off the sky lanterns that we brought down. They were a HUGE hit and everyone just loved them! Some didn't quite make it up in the air and crashed into the ocean, but people still had a lot of fun doing them, taking pictures of them and making wishes.
Next was our first danceâ€¦ it was beautiful! We had provided everyone with sparklers and while we were dancing we looked around the entire gazebo and saw them all a glow! It was another magical moment for us!
When you rent the gazebo you're only supposed to have it for 2 hoursâ€¦ they kept the lights and power on till midnight for us, which was great! After that, some people called it a night, while others changed and headed to the disco!
Our room was decorated when we got back with rose petals, towel swans in the shapes of heats and another bottle of Moet champagne (we had received one earlier in the week as well). It was so pretty! It was an amazing end to a long but amazing day!
The next morning we got all dolled up again for our TTD session with Stacey. Again, walking from our room down to the lobby was amazing as this time everyone was congratulating us and telling us how great we looked! I remember a little girl stopping me and just staring with an open mouth and she finally said "You're soo pretty!" Awwwâ€¦ it just makes you feel amazing and I wanted to wear my dress every day for the rest of the vacation! hahaha!
So our TTD session was so fun! Lots of cute pics with the bright blue sky behind us, and my dress standing out so well on that backdrop. We took pics around the resort, down by the gazebo and then finally went into the ocean. She left it up to us to be spontaneious and have some fun with it. It was just a wonderful experience and if you keep an open mind and run with it, you'll have a blast getting your dress all dirty!
Overall, there were some bumps and hiccups along the way, but the end result was a magical day we'll never forget. We had a group of 31 with us, and you get pulled in a lot of different directions during the week. Between friends, family and the wedding, you're VERY busy! So try to make time for everyone, even if it's for brunch, or a drink at the pool bar, but just reaching out and spending a little bit of time with everyone goes a long way! Also make sure that you make time for yourselves as it can become very overwhelming! Just remember that you're in this together and no matter the stress level, you have each other to lean on.
So to end the review, I just wanted to say that I can't tell you how much love I felt that day, and how much more I fell in love with my husband! It truly was a dream come true and the perfect wedding! I would do it again in a heartbeat!
I'm sure I've missed some things, so if you have questions, just ask!