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Erinleigh's Melia Caribe Tropical, Punta Cana Wedding Review! Lots of pictures


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#1 erinleigh

erinleigh
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    Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:03 PM

    Our wedding was November 9, 2009 at the Melia Caribe Tropical Resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. We had 30 friends and family members travel from Canada for our wedding week. Our wedding and the week with those closest to us was truly amazing. It was the best time of our lives and the wedding day was the best day of our lives. We would not change one single thing. It even poured raining the morning of the wedding, and although I had a mild panic, it turned out to be a blessing. The rain made it feel like we were all in this little cocoon under the gazebo, it was so intimate and romantic. Then, as soon as we were ready for pictures, the sun came out and the sky looked beautiful with white puffy clouds. Our pictures are incredible. I’ve tried to review the big things, but if anyone has any questions, please let me know.

    I’d also like to thank everyone on this forum. I could never, never, never have planned this wedding without the ideas, creativity, support and friendships on this forum.

    Resort – A+
    The Melia Caribe Tropical resort is absolutely beautiful. It is a very large resort (2 resorts that are now one) but the attention to detail in everything does not go unnoticed. The variety in restaurants, bars, pools, activities, etc makes for a great all-inclusive experience. This is our second trip to this resort and we will be back I’m sure. This time we stayed in the upgraded Royal Service and it was worth every penny.

    Check-in/Guest Rooms – B+
    When we arrived on November 6 at about 8pm they had a private check-in set up for our group. That made things easy and smooth. No waiting in any long lines! The rooms are very nice, large, clean and fairly modern. A couple people ended up having to switch rooms for minor problems (queen beds instead of king, etc). And only my parents (disappointing) had major problems and had to change rooms twice. Other than that everyone was very pleased. We stayed in the Royal Service section and were upgraded to a master suite. It was beautiful with a kitchen, living room, separate bedroom, large bathroom with huge Jacuzzi tub and shower with massage jets.

    Welcome Dinner B+
    We held a welcome dinner the day after everyone arrived at the American Grill. We were slightly disappointed because we had originally requested the Dominican Restaurant for our welcome dinner as they have a large semi-private room to accommodate a large group. But, we got bumped by an actual wedding, so I can’t really complain . We were seated at 3 large tables, close together. The food was really good and the set up still allowed us to make a brief speech and be heard and give out our favors (insulated mugs). It was a nice way to get everyone together.

    Melia Wedding Coordinator - C
    Our wedding coordinator was Laura Kruetz. She was ok, but I didn’t feel like she really went out of her way for us or anything. We made some changes to the ceremony and I found it took some convincing to get her to go along with my requests. She seems to have one way she always does the weddings and doesn’t like to deviate. But I got my way in the end so all was good! One other thing is that I gave her fans and programs to put on chairs. I asked her to fan out the fans and insert the programs between the pieces of wood, but I found out later that she just set the fans and programs on the chairs as they were. Not a big deal, but still, I worked hard on them.

    The Wedding A++
    Our wedding was magical. It was so beautiful and romantic and a lot of that has to do with the rain. It added something really special. We chose the Melia wedding package. Which is the “free” package. But it is only for 12 people so we had to pay extra for champagne and cake for the rest of our guests. We did a legal ceremony, so the judge performed the ceremony in Spanish and Laura, our wedding coordinator, translated. I thought the Spanish was romantic also. The wedding only lasted about 10-15 minutes max. We did a sand ceremony also, and had my cousin read it, which was beautiful.

    Melia Garden Gazebo - A++
    We chose to hold our wedding in the garden gazebo. You can also have your wedding in the beach gazebo or on the beach. We chose the garden location for the beauty of the gazebo and for the privacy. I’m so glad we did, because as I mentioned it poured raining during our ceremony. The garden gazebo is very large so all our guests were seated inside the gazebo and we were in a little cocoon from the rain. They decorated the gazebo with fresh flower arches which were really pretty. There is also a nice “aisle” where you go over a little bridge to get to the gazebo. I highly recommend this site for weddings at the Melia.

    Click the image to open in full size.

    #2 erinleigh

    erinleigh
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    • 316 posts

      Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:03 PM

      Musical Trio - A++
      We chose to hire the musical trio to play the processional music and they also played for about an hour, during champagne and photos. I highly recommend the musical trio! They were excellent!! Everyone loved them and they added something really special to the ceremony. They played Cannon in D for my bridesmaids and the bridal march for me. Usually the trio follows the bride into the gazebo, but we chose to have them in the gazebo and play the whole time from there. We didn’t think people would be able to hear them well until my dad and I got all the way into the gazebo if we did it their way, so we made that change. I’m glad we did!

      Click the image to open in full size.

      La Barcaza A+++++++++
      OMG! I don’t think I will be able to do this justice in words. It was amazing and made our wedding the spectacular event that it was. La Barcaza is a small yacht that you can rent. We rented it for 4 hours (and ended up extending to 5) for our reception. It has a top deck with lounge sofas and the lower deck they set up for dinner. They set up our dinner with 4 large square tables of 8. The way the tables were set up made for a very intimate feel. When we did speeches, people would stand sort of in the middle of the tables to give their speech, again it was so intimate. Dinner was served during sunset – incredible. The food was delicious!! Grilled chicken, pork and veggies. Dessert was pinapple flamb© – yummy! When dinner was over, we cut our cake, then they moved the tables and we did our first dances and then PARTIED!! We brought our own music on an ipod, and they had a doc for their speakers. I am telling you – our reception was incredible, awesome, wonderful, amazing, etc, etc. It was so nice to do something a little bit different. Everyone kept tell us how amazing they thought it was and at the end of the night everyone was chanting “Best Wedding Ever!” ha ha. Did I mention it was awesome?? Oh, and something funny happened. They doc the boat at this “natural swimming pool” and when the party got into full swing, a few of the guys decided to strip down to their undies and go swimming. Well….then some of the girls did the same. And….yup….I did too! That’s right, I went swimming on my wedding day! I took off my dress, handed it to my mom and hoped in the water. It was so much fun. When I got out, I towel dried off and then put my dress right back on! My hair hardly even budged too!

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      #3 erinleigh

      erinleigh
      • Jr. Member
      • 316 posts

        Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:03 PM

        Flowers - A++
        I was in love with my flowers. I thought they were beautiful. I was pretty easy going about them, showed my wedding coordinator a couple sample pictures and they created the most beautiful bouquets. My colours were orange and aqua so I brought the ribbon with me to wrap the stems.

        Click the image to open in full size.

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        Cake – A
        The cake was beautiful and YUMMY! Although I only had a small bit when we did the cake cutting. But everyone said it was really good. It was vanilla with strawberry filling. I brought the cake toppers from home, they were diy.

        Click the image to open in full size.

        Spa - A
        The girls in the spa really don’t speak very good English, so if you don’t know Spanish, I really recommend bringing a picture of what you want. But they are good! They recreated the picture I brought exactly! AND, my hair stayed in all night long. Through the wind on the boat and even through swimming!! My mom and my bridesmaids also had their hair done and they each loved what was done.

        Click the image to open in full size.

        #4 erinleigh

        erinleigh
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          Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:04 PM

          Photographer A+++++++++
          We did not use the resort photographer. We hired Arnaud Brichet from HDC Photo – Click the image to open in full size.

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          #5 erinleigh

          erinleigh
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            Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:07 PM

            And this might be my fav....

            Click the image to open in full size.

            #6 vlynnw

            vlynnw
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              Posted 22 November 2009 - 05:08 PM

              Wow everything sounds and looks amazing! Looks like you had a fabulous time, congratulations, and I love that you handed your dress to your mom and went for a swim!
              Veronica & Adam - May 6, 2011 - Dreams Tulum

              #7 ML YoungLove

              ML YoungLove
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                Posted 22 November 2009 - 08:01 PM

                Everything looked fabulous! Loveee your dress, I am wearing the same one! Congrats Mrs!
                Mrs. Young

                #8 ~Keira~

                ~Keira~
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                  Posted 22 November 2009 - 08:35 PM

                  Beautiful. Just beautiful.
                  ~Keira~**formerly KLee147**

                  http://i794.photobuc....E_0170-1-1.jpg

                  #9 YaelM

                  YaelM

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                    Posted 22 November 2009 - 09:03 PM

                    Great review!! Love all the pictures!!

                    #10 Erika J

                    Erika J

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                      Posted 23 November 2009 - 02:02 AM

                      I love your pics they are soooo Fab!!!

                      Thanks for the review too, it has tons of great info!




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