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What I would and wouldn't do again...

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Originally Posted by northernflasher View Post
Thanks Marie-Laine for such a detailed post.

You raise lots of good points which I'd not come across before. This thread will be a blessing to us all!

Many Thanks

You're very welcome! It's such an important day in our lives...I want to help it go as smoothly as possible for everyone. I think anything we can share about our own experiences will help, one way or another. :)

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This was one of my favorite threads so I'm excited to write my thoughts


Would do/Keep the same

Destination Wedding-This was the best decision we made regarding our wedding


Civil Cermony-We had a pretty large civil ceremony (65 people) 6 months before our DW on a private Yacht in Boston. It was a wonderful day and my family and friends were there with us many of whom were not able to come to our DW. Most importantly my grandmother was able to be there and see me get married. She died 4 months later.


Excellence Punta Cana-The resort was absolutely amazing from the service to the grounds to the beach and food. Most importantly we have an absolutely amazing wedding coordinator. I am a perfectionist and I thought of every detail possible and she executed it all better than I could have imagined. I'm tough to please and she blew me away.


Welcome Cocktail Party-We had a private welcome party (the WC totally hooked us up) it was supposed to be at the lobby bar and she got us a private party by the pool. It was so much fun. This is where I suprised my husband with his favorite photographer. I had flown her in to suprise him. He started crying he was so suprised and happy.


Rehersal Dinner-This was a lot of fun. We had it in a beautiful restaraunt. My one complaint that it was loud and hard for people to here us when we were talking about our wedding party/family. The set up and food was perfect though.


Dresses-It took me a while to find a dress that looked like a wedding gown but was appropriate for a beach...but when I finally did it was perfect. I only spent $600 which was perfect because I also wanted a reception dress so I didn't die sweating. I am glad that I spent a good amount on $ on alterations to make it perfect. I loved my reception dress. It was a nice flowy silk dress. I got so many compliments on it. I also liked being announced and making an entrance in a new outfit. My husband changed as well.


Bridal Party attire-I loved the tiffany blue dresses that I picked out for my bridesmaids-WToo. They looked amazing with a tan and a perfect compliment to the ocean.


Hiring a DJ-DJ Mannia was so so good. We literally danced straight from the time we cut the cake until we were kicked out at 10:00...no one sat down. We brought glow bracletts which were also a huge hit. I liked having an MC and somoone to oversee all of the things that were taking place.


Hiring a Videographer-I wasn't going to do this at first but my mom really wanted to have a video so she got this for us. I never really thought about it but having a video is great. Video Punta Cana did a great job.


Flying in our photographer-This was a HUGE expense but absolutely worth it. I did this as a gift to my husband and a suprise. Corinna Raznikov is just so talented and wonderful. She was worth every single penny I paid for her and a great splurge.


Have a Christian Missonary and not a Judge do our ceremony-We hired Rick York and he did a great job brining christina spirtuality to our ceremony. This was really important to us.


Writing our own vows-I thought it was wonderful to hear Benny read to me vows he had written. It made it really personal.


Bi-lingual ceremony--I loved that Rick York is bi-lingual and able to conduct the entire ceremony in english and spanish so that Benny's mom was able to understand everything.


Saxaphone player and pianist for the ceremony-This completely set the mood and was beautiful.


Our room at Excellence-We booked a great suite overlooking the pool where our reception was. It was a really nice room (a bit of a splurge) but totally worth it. I even had to fight for it at check in because someone dropped the ball for our upgrade. It was awesome.


Spend all the time I did on the details because everything came out PERFECT


DIY projects-Here were my projects and I loved doing them and how they came out

Save the Date

Invitation-partial DIY


Poem that went on the table in the napkins


OOT Bag labels

Beach towel for me and MOH

Tanks for me and bridesmaids


OOT bags-These were a huge hit. We gave really cute polka dot bags a nice beach towel. A full size lotion and spray from Bath and Body works. A cup that said eat drink and be married. A medicine kit, aloe and a thank note/itinerary. It was totally worth spending the money to make them really nice.


Timeline for the wedding party/bride/groom/photographer--everyone kept asking what time do I need to this and that on the wedding day. I was already overwhelmed so I asked the WC to work with the photographer and put together a time line for everyone. The WC was just awesome...she made one for the bridesmaids another for the groomsmen one for me and one for benny and a master copy for the photog. She did them on these super cute cards.


Wouldn't do/Change

Vendor meetings-I wish that I had met with all of them on the same day. For 3 days we had at least one or two meetings a day. I wish I had just done everything the first day I was there and got it over with so I could relax with everyone.


Chair Sashes-I wish I had purchased these before hand. My husband kept saying no we have enough stuff to bring down...which was true but we ended up spending $2.50/sash to rent them verses buying them for $1. I loved how they added color to the ceremony. They were really beautiful.


Honeymoon-If Benny had known he could tolerate the sun and the beach as well as he did we would have absolutely preferred to stay at Excellence for our honeymoon instead of flying home to Boston and then Costa Rica. I'm not sure I would go to the place we went in CR if I could do it again. But that's another review.


I wish I would not have spent so much time getting upset about people not going including my father

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I haven't sat down to really think these through, but here are a few things off the top of my head:


Would Do Again


1. Bubba Kegs--I know others have said it before, but these were a HUGE hit! Even the non-drinkers loved them for virgin drinks and ice water. They honestly keep things really cold for up to 6hrs...and will keep tea warm for up to 3hrs!! Even if this is your only gift, I highly recommend them!!


2. Getting married off-site--Getting married on the resort is obviously super-amazing and beautiful, but we decided very early on that we wanted to have our ceremony/reception off-site. It was perfect!


3. Arranged a dinner on the final night with both our immediate families--It was soooo hard to spend time with everyone throughout the week, so we arranged a dinner for just our parents/siblings and close family on the last night. It was very intimate (only 12 people) and gave us some much needed quality time with the one's who mean the most to us.


4. Make the most of your wedding day/night--we continued our celebrations late into the night. Ladies--keep your wedding dress on!! This is your day to SHINE!! You will receive so many compliments and you will truly feel like a princess!! You may not be used to so much attention, but it was the most amazing feeling to feel so special on my wedding day!! And stay out late!! We hung out at a bar, and then made our way to the disco where we stayed until 2am!! It was so much fun! Destination weddings are such a great opportunity to keep the celebrations going because nobody is driving home and nobody needs to get up early the next day!! So enjoy it till the very last moment!!!


5. Stay an extra week!!--Probably our absolute best decision!! It was a last-minute decision, but so totally worth the extra money! After spending a week "hosting" and "catering" to so many family members and friends, we were soooo exhausted. Don't get me wrong, it was a ton of fun, and even though everyone an fend for themselves, you still feel sort of responsible for your guests and want to divide your time between them. So I definitely recommend staying an extra week with your new hubby. Switch resorts so you feel like it's a whole new vacation!!


6. Create our own ceremony--Word for word, we created our ceremony. Everything about was personal and was relevant to our relationship. Guests might not care, but we did.


7. Incorporate culture--my husband is Korean and we made a last-minute decision that I would wear a traditional Korean dress for the reception part of our day. It was awesome! Two weeks before the wedding we had it made in Korea and shipped to Canada. It was so beautiful. And my husband's family was really touched by this gesture. So if you're thinking of incorporating something as part of your culture, do it! It might end up costing a fortune, but will be totally worth it!


Wouldn't Do Again


1. Stress about wrinkles in my dress--OMG!! By the time we arrived at the resort my dress had been stuffed in an overhead compartment, dragged on the ground, and crammed into my lap on the shuttle bus. When I took it out to look at it, I cried!! It had some (minor) wrinkles and I felt that it looked soooo bad!!. Trust me, it is WINDY in Jamaica!! Nobody will notice!! By the time you put it on, walk around in it, have it blown in the wind, have people stand on it during pictures, and sit on it yourself during the reception, it will not be perfect anymore!! And NOBODY will even notice!! (As a side note, if your dress is super-wrinkled, and you seriously need it steamed, check with your resort immediately when you arrive. The ROR does not offer steaming services onsite and they need a couple of days to send it away. So you will want to get it done ASAP so that it's back before your wedding.).


That's all I can think of for now. Once I sit down to write my review, I might come up with more...

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6. Create our own ceremony--Word for word, we created our ceremony. Everything about was personal and was relevant to our relationship. Guests might not care, but we did.


you made my mind up i keep thinking about us writing a little something to read to each other before the legal ceremony begins.now we are.i need to research it for some tips.



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Originally Posted by shellk View Post
6. Create our own ceremony--Word for word, we created our ceremony. Everything about was personal and was relevant to our relationship. Guests might not care, but we did.

you made my mind up i keep thinking about us writing a little something to read to each other before the legal ceremony begins.now we are.i need to research it for some tips.


FI and I are writing out own independantly. His will be different from mine... Lord knows it maybe to love honor and kept as long as she keeps my beer cold. lol

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