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southernbride83

Help!! Is it worth the money to hire an outside coordinator?

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I plan to get married at the Hilton Los Cabos, but I still haven't decided if I should just stick with the Hilton planner or pay extra for my own coordinator. I have heard really great things about both options. I know that if I was just going with the basics I would be fine with the Hilton staff, but I know myself and I tend to be a little high maintenance. Does it make sense to hire someone when you want some extras beyond what the hotel is offering? It would end up costing 10-20% of the wedding cost. If not for the whole process, maybe a "Day of" coordinator? Let me know your thoughts.

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I think it depends on your personality and what is important to you. The Hilton staff does a great job coordinating the day of, but I would not rely on them to remind you when and what to book and keep track of all your details like a personal coordinator would (see my review). For me, I had initially planned on hiring an outside coordinator but once I picked the venue and found this forum I forged ahead myself. I was very hands on and handled all the planning details, including researching and negotiating with vendors personally. If you are not good at that or just don't want to do it, a coordinator may be the way to go. Others on the forum really loved having an outside coodinator. Good luck!

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I just got married at the Hilton Los Cabos and was very pleased with Tathiana, my WC. She was very responsive to my emails and phone calls. There were just a couple of things that were different than what I had requested but it didn't end up being a big deal for me and had I have followed up by asking for a revised BEO, there probably wouldn't have been a problem at all. I got married on the Black Marlin Terrace and had requested an arch. The BEO said a Chuppa. I scratched it out and replaced it with an arch and wrote her an email to tell her what I wanted and she agreed, however, had I asked for a revised BEO, I'm sure it would have been taken care of. It didn't bother me because it was beautiful. I plan meetings for work and see this happen all the time. The catering mgr. agrees to things via email but forgets to change them on the BEO and the staff isn't aware of the changes. Bottom line - always get exactly what you want in writing on the contract/ Banquest Event Order.

 

We had our dinner at the Fenecia restaurant and I had changed up the appetizer menu, which she agreed could be done, but when we received the appetizers, it was the same as the original menu. Once again, no problem, as it was all delicious.

 

WC would have arranged everything on her own, however, I requested Marco for the minister and it just worked out the they use him anyway. He kept in contact with me to see what we wanted. ie did we want our own vows, he sent us some to choose from or to help us with our own, etc. I felt as if I had known him for years - and have to agree with the other brides on this forum, that you couldn't go wrong with him.

 

I had requested Alonso Aguirre for my solo guitarist, as I had heard him before. He plays during breakfast time at the Hilton, which makes a very pleasant breakfast. My FI had emailed him a play list but never got a response, but WC had asked us to copy her in the email so she could stay on top of things and follow-up, which she did - and he played everything we requested. I walked down to Canon in D and he did a beautiful job. Also, "the way you look tonight" was great. I highly recommend him.

 

WC suggested several different florists and I chose Mazarte Florals, based on reviews on this Forum, which was also on her list. I sent WC a picture of what I would like my bouquet to look like and it was identical. I couldn't have been more pleased, especially since I was never in contact with the florist.

 

WC suggested several different photographers and I chose Dino Gomez (from her list) and once again, I was very pleased. Before we left the property, a CD was left in our room. On the CD were our pictures and a slide show he had put together with "Unforgetable" playing in the background. WC dealt directly with Dino for me.

 

The only person I dealt with directly was Jennifer Hatton. She made the wedding cake. I would have used the Hilton's chef, but their price was too high for what I wanted. WC had no problem at all with me using an outside vendor. My cake was beautiful and was exactly what I wanted. I had sent her a picture, as well. And, on top of that, it was delicious.

 

We had our Welcome dinner at Edith's in Cabo. I had eaten there several times before and it is a personal favorite. It's quite costly, but we had a small group of 11 - and is well worth it. I highly recommend going there - even if it's just the 2 of you. I made my reservation via email and Jose Bahena was very responsive. I had to change the time and he got right back to me. In addition, I wanted a special birthday cake delivered to the restaurant and presented to my FI after dinner as a surprise. It went off perfectly. They did want $40 for a cutting fee, however, when the baker found that out, she reduced her delivery charge for me. I used Deena, with Sweet Dreams, to make that cake. She was a little less than Jennifer Hatton. However, both cakes were delicious, and both ladies were great to work with.

 

The morning after the wedding, we took our guests on a snorkeling excursion. I chose a boat/company that I had been on several times before and had a blast each time. It's called the SunRider Tours. I emailed them and got a response from "Mario" right away. He offered me a discounted rate from what they normally charge but later, I saw on their website, they were offering that rate anyway as a "December" special. I didn't confirm ahead of time, not knowing if it would be too cool for snorkeling, but when we arrived, we saw that it was fine to go. I emailed him once I got there and asked if he would except a rate that was a little less than what he offered me and he did. Once again, we all had a blast - and even got to see whales!!

 

We used a transportation company called Lifestyle. They were great - professional and friendly. I had not heard of them before, but somehow had gotten on their email list and I've received newsletters from them for several years. I have planned business mtgs. there before and had always used the same company, however, they were the most expensive and were not willing to negotiate. Lifestyle were willing, therefore, they got the job. We had no problem with them at all and would recommend them. Another thing I liked about them, versus the company I had used for business, is that they accepted payment by credit card and the other company was wire transfer only. That was ok when it was for my company, but I felt better using a credit card for a company I had not heard of before on a personal basis. They sent an authorization form before hand and we were able to set it all up. Even though we just used them for roundtrip airport transfers, they were willing to work with us on trips into town by using credit cards, as well, but we just ended up taking taxis.

 

We ate dinner at Mi Casa one of the nights we were there. In fact, we actually went back a second time. You know how us Texans like Mexican food. lol

 

I know this is pretty long for such a simple question that you asked - but I hope it helped you some. Don't hesitate to contact me if I can help any further.

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I used an outside co-ordinator even though I probably didn't need to. It gave me a lot of peace of mind and she was absolutely fantastic. I just used her for the day of though...I hired all the vendors myself and did all the negotiating myself. My outside DOC just helped set everything up that day, was in charge of running all the music, and completely cleaned everything up afterwards. I think she was worth every penny I paid her, but that's just my opinion. I know many others have had weddings in Cabo without a DOC and the hotel co-ordinator does a great job too!

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I didn't get married at the Hilton so I'm not sure how the WC's there were. I think it depends on you and your comfort level. If you're super hands on, detail oriented and prefer to be in control, then I say you can do it all yourself. The vendors, at least the ones that I worked with, were super reliable and easy to communicate with. We didn't hire an outside WC and just used the resort coordinator and it worked out really well.

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I decided to use the onsite coordinator Yorai at Dreams. I don't know the work ethic of the coordinators at The Hilton, but I have no complaints at all so far with the coordinator at Dreams Los Cabos. The closer the wedding date got, the more I heard from her. Of course the wedding has not happened yet, but I am positive that things will go off without a hitch. She is super organized and so am I so, I have every confidence in my decision NOT to use an outside coordinator. These women have a team and have been doing this for a long time (In most cases) all they do is plan weddings so IMO an outside coordinator is not really needed. I am sure whichever way you go your wedding will be beautiful! Happy planning

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I am very detail oriented and decided to just use the wedding coordinator provided by Dreams. She did a good job getting everything together, but a DOC would have been nice as there were a couple items that I wish were a little different.

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I guess it depends how "hands on" you want to be. If you are some what of a "control freak," you may be better off planning everything yourself and using the resort's planner. However, if you need someone to come up with the "design" of your wedding, an outside coordinator may benefit you!! Good luck!

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I am also really conflicted about this issue.

 

I am getting married at Cabo Azul in May. I had decided to just stick with the hotel's coordinator, Sergio, but over the past few months he hasn't been good about returning emails or calling. We haven't even begun to talk about details. So I decided to hire April from Baja Weddings. But when I told Sergio this, he immediately called to apologize and implored me to give him a week to prove his ability and commitment.

 

I had read some negative reviews of Sergio but I originally thought that I would be fine with him because I have an exact vision and plan for everything I want at the wedding. I just don't want his knack for not "following through" to reflect in the "day of" wedding coordinating. The most important thing for me in a coordinator is that once I arrive in Cabo I want the whole weekend to run smoothly without me having to deal with anything. I had even considered having Baja Weddings just do "day of" but they said they don't do that... that it's more complicated than just being involved from the beginning.

 

Any advice would be very very much appreciated!

 

Thanks!

 

Michelle

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