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Any Gran Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Brides out there?


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#5021 MelB2012

MelB2012
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    Posted 18 July 2013 - 09:41 AM

    Originally Posted by JennyO 

    So I just recieved an email from Kalfani stating my wedding ceremony was at 4:00pm (when is should be at 11:00am) and I almost died!!

     

    I just called the resort (because waiting for an email reply would take another two weeks) and talked to Vinnette (who is awesome) and she clarified my ceremony time is at 11:00am

    It was a confusion with another Jennifer getting married Nov 5th 2013, her ceremony is 4:00pm

     

    Jennifer, are you a part of this blog? I would love to chat lol

     

    I can't believe how easy it was to call her and have everthing taken care of in 20 minutes. :)

    Flowers, cake, dinner and ceremony all booked!!

    Sooo happy with there customer service....especially when she says "ya mon" lol !!

    Wow. I left a voicemail on Vinette's line almost a whole week ago, and she has not yet gotten back to me. I also emailed her twice, over a week ago. She has yet to send me any correspondance... And it's not like my wedding is that far away from yours, I'm November 15th.

     

    That's rather disheartening that you received such good service, and I received... nothing. I've received one email from Vinette asking for all my credit card and wedding info.... when I booked my date July 18th 2012!! And still have the email confirmations.

     

    I'm happy nothing changed for you though. I would have also died.... I might still.....



    #5022 JennyO

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      Posted 18 July 2013 - 10:26 AM

      We have almost the exact same dress!!
      pics looked lovely!

      Thanks for the info :)



      #5023 JennyO

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        Posted 18 July 2013 - 10:29 AM

        Your dress is almost exactly like mine!!
        pics look amazing

        thanks for all the info :)

        Originally Posted by swtng 

        We had our wedding on June 24th at 1pm and it was beautiful! All 40 of our guests described it as magical.

        We used Luxe Destination Weddings to book from Toronto and had some problems such as having our agent quit without notice 2 weeks before the final balance was due. We were never informed that the agent left and only found out after my sister in law lost her patience with the unanswered messages and contacted the manager. We were assigned a new agent. The biggest disappointment was that when we arrived at the Montego Bay airport we realized that our travel agent did not send us our transport vouchers. Only one person in a group of 8 received the travel voucher. Thank goodness for that! We could at least prove that we were supposed to be transferred to the hotel. I would advise anyone booking with Luxe Destination Weddings to expect some glitches. The name implies that they are more helpful than other agents when booking a destination wedding. Unless you pay extra for their wedding planning services they are just going to book your flights and that's all. Don't even bother paying Luxe for their wedding planning services if you are getting married at the Gran Bahia Jamaica, the wedding team at the resort is exceptional.

        We arrived on June 21st and met with one of the wedding coordinators, Vinette. She was a pleasure to work with. She was very patient and spent over an hour with us going over every detail of our wedding. Before the meeting, I had prepared programs and a seating list. I also brought photos of how I wanted the table decor to be set up. I had a reception schedule planned with playlists for the DJ. Vinette advised me of things in my plans that would not work and offered alternatives. At that meeting, we settled the costs- 2500 USD to have the reception at the Picasso and 900 USD for the Unforgettable package. We had 10 more guests than the package allowed so that was 35 USD x10 and we had to pay cash for the chair sashes 40x 2.50 USD. Vinette walked us through what to expect on the wedding day and took us to see the reception venue. I had to request that my future mother-in-law and groom get a ride to the gazebo. It's a long walk in heels and they only give the bridal party a ride. After all that was planned, we enjoyed relaxing on the beach for the next couple of days. It was amazing to relax on the beach with family and friends the day before the wedding.

        I got Rashel Edwards to do makeup and she has a hair stylist who works with her. She charges 70 USD for makeup per person, 70 USD for hair per person and 100 USD travel fee. They did a great job with hair and makeup. They came to the room and that way we didn't have to rush back from the spa and risk bumping into the groom. There was supposed to be a 75 USD fee to get each of them a day pass but Vinette waived that for us. I was told that is not always the case so please beware if you are booking outside vendors. On the morning of the wedding, she and the hair stylist arrived at 10am. They did hair and make up for 4 people and I was ready at 1 pm.

        The golf cart drove us to the gazebo and the steel band was playing. The procession was beautiful with the steel band music and it was a long walk to the gazebo so I really got to soak it all in. The gazebo is windy but everyone was able to hear the ceremony. The weather was perfect. No rain for the entire week we were there. I brought palm leaf fans for all the guests in case it was too hot but the sun went behind the clouds and it was a very comfortable for the ceremony. It was really beautiful to get married in that gazebo overlooking the ocean. It felt very private although there were some onlookers in bathing suits nearby. I didn't even notice them until I spotted them in a friend's photo. It all part of the fun and we had a good laugh about it.

        After the ceremony, we had drinks and mingled with our guests. We took a group photo at the gazebo and then photos with our guests. We did not feel rushed to leave the gazebo at all. The wedding team took down the decorations and the band left but we lingered to take photos. The band packed up and left before I knew they were gone. I regret not getting to tip them because they really added a special feel to the setting.

        We used Merrick Cousley for photography. The package we chose cost 2300 USD but the resort charged us 800 USD as a penalty for not using their services. The shocker came after we paid that and was told that we needed to pay 75 USD for his day pass. Again, Vinette waived that for us. Merrick is amazing! He pays attention to every little detail and has a sharp eye for setting up the perfect shot. His equipment is impressive and the slideshow he presented during the reception really confirmed our belief that he is among the best. He arrived around 11:30am and stayed until the last sky lantern was released. We had 15 free photos from the resort included in our wedding package. The photographer was Christopher Lee. He was able to get great candid photos during the ceremony and if we weren't so picky about photography, I would have no problem using the resort's photo services. I love photography and I love how editing makes photos 'pop'. That's what Merrick offers that is different from the resort. If I didn't have the budget, then the resort's photography would be great for capturing the memories. I didn't order flowers or any extras because photos were more important to us :)

        My mother-in-law surprised us with flowers for the ceremony and a bouquet of roses for me. She also paid for the bartender and videographer so I can't comment on those costs. The chair with sashes as well as the flowers were moved to our reception venue.

        The reception was at 6:30pm at the Picasso. Again, the staff did a wonderful job with setting up the tables and decor. When we walked in, it was so beautiful. For dinner, we had salmon and rice as the entree. It was honestly the best wedding food I've ever had. The wedding cake that came with the package was three tiers and it was delicious. After dinner, we had 2 hrs of dancing. The bartenders helped to keep the party going but I wouldn't have the budget for them if my mother-in-law didn't pay for it. I'm sure that another solution could be found...Vinette was present throughout making sure that everything was going according to our plans.

        The DJ informed me when it was the last dance. When that was done, the tables were cleared and I asked friends to collect the decor, guest book and flowers I wanted to keep. Make sure that all your guests have their belongings because everything gets thrown out after the reception.

        We walked to the Gazebo and lit the sky lanterns. It was a perfect way to end the evening. We had such a great day and we were very impressed with the staff who helped at our wedding, from the coordinators to the servers, it was a pleasure to work with everyone.






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        #5024 JennyO

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          Posted 18 July 2013 - 10:41 AM

          Originally Posted by CdnBrideJoanne 

           

          I thought so too!  I may just get the hair done but do the makeup myself.  I need all the help I can get with doing my hair.

           

          And.... sorry if this posts twice.  I have no idea why all of a sudden this has started!

          I paid my friend and her husbands deposit for the trip $400 total.  this was also a good way to get them to come lol

          With the amount of women getting there hair done, it was cheaper this way. 

          One of my bridesmaids is an esthetician, so she will be doing our makeup

          My maid of honor has an amazing camera, she will be taking some of the pics, we have the unforgettable package, so we are taking the 15 pics for free as well.

          To avoid any vendor fees, we are saying my maid of honor just got the camera and is still learning how to use it (this tip came from this site) :)  and hair and makeup, we're doing ourselves.

          Can't wait to be in Jamaica saying "i do" to my best friend!!



          #5025 JennyO

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            Posted 18 July 2013 - 11:17 AM

            Originally Posted by MelB2012 

            Wow. I left a voicemail on Vinette's line almost a whole week ago, and she has not yet gotten back to me. I also emailed her twice, over a week ago. She has yet to send me any correspondance... And it's not like my wedding is that far away from yours, I'm November 15th.

             

            That's rather disheartening that you received such good service, and I received... nothing. I've received one email from Vinette asking for all my credit card and wedding info.... when I booked my date July 18th 2012!! And still have the email confirmations.

             

            I'm happy nothing changed for you though. I would have also died.... I might still.....

            Try to call there today!  She might answer.  Im sorry you are having such a challenge with her :(   1-876 973 7000
             

            Good luck MelB2012



            #5026 CdnBrideJoanne

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              Posted 18 July 2013 - 01:19 PM

              Originally Posted by MelB2012 

              Wow. I left a voicemail on Vinette's line almost a whole week ago, and she has not yet gotten back to me. I also emailed her twice, over a week ago. She has yet to send me any correspondance... And it's not like my wedding is that far away from yours, I'm November 15th.

               

              That's rather disheartening that you received such good service, and I received... nothing. I've received one email from Vinette asking for all my credit card and wedding info.... when I booked my date July 18th 2012!! And still have the email confirmations.

               

              I'm happy nothing changed for you though. I would have also died.... I might still.....

               

              I agree that the speed of responses has gone downhill lately.  Stephany was really great communicating with me and sending me answers.  I miss her. 



              #5027 CdnBrideJoanne

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                Posted 18 July 2013 - 01:19 PM

                Originally Posted by MelB2012 

                Wow. I left a voicemail on Vinette's line almost a whole week ago, and she has not yet gotten back to me. I also emailed her twice, over a week ago. She has yet to send me any correspondance... And it's not like my wedding is that far away from yours, I'm November 15th.

                 

                That's rather disheartening that you received such good service, and I received... nothing. I've received one email from Vinette asking for all my credit card and wedding info.... when I booked my date July 18th 2012!! And still have the email confirmations.

                 

                I'm happy nothing changed for you though. I would have also died.... I might still.....

                 

                I agree that the speed of responses has gone downhill lately.  Stephany was really great communicating with me and sending me answers.  I miss her. 



                #5028 AngRiggs

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                  Posted 18 July 2013 - 03:01 PM

                  I did have Chandlyn as my planner but then all of a sudden started receiving replies from a different girl. 



                  #5029 AngRiggs

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                    Posted 18 July 2013 - 03:06 PM

                    Has anyone dealt with Taiflora for extra decorations or chairs. I have tried emailing them a number of times since march and get no reply. no my 'new' wedding planner is telling me to contact them again. and still nothing. my wedding is just over 3 months away!! I'm hoping it all works out. Also did anyone ever have welcome bags done up by the resort?? 



                    #5030 AngRiggs

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                      Posted 18 July 2013 - 03:12 PM

                      Originally Posted by JennyO 

                      We have almost the exact same dress!!
                      pics looked lovely!

                      Thanks for the info :)

                      We will be there for our second week during your wedding. 

                      how have you found dealing with the wedding planners? the replies are slow, and my planner just changed all of a sudden. also have you planned on doing any decoration upgrades?






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