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futuremrsgoodrich

(pic heavy) Mrs. Goodrich's Beaches Negril Review Feb-2010

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The Proposal: My DH proposed on a cruise last summer between the islands of St. Lucia and Antigua. He's the sweetest... we knew we didn't want a big wedding and our families seemed to be thinking big, so having a DW made it so we could invite whom we wanted to and not have to worry about the size. We had 64 guests and they were our closest friends and family. It was WONDERFUL

 

Our Travel Concierge, Michelle Thornton Sandy A++++

When we started to look around we had no idea what to do to make it happen. We got lucky with Michelle Sandy out of Naples Florida. She works with Destination weddings.com (that's how we found her) but has her own business as well. Not exactly sure how it all works but she was so helpful, returned calls promptly, got on the Miami coordinators when they were lax (see below), helped with special requests among our guests and generally made sure that everything went smoothly.

 

Wedding Coordinator for Beaches (in Miami): C

I cant give lower than a C because everything worked out in the end but its hard to give over hard earned money to people who dont return phone calls and miss phone appointments. The WC switched about 2 weeks before the wedding, and the new one promised on her voicemail to return calls within 48hrs- which she did but we also owed them money and the day was coming up! Not a lot of love for them, made me cry a few times.

 

The Flights: A

Luckily everyone made it in no problems. Some guests flew home to 3ft of new snow, but all was well. Air Jamaica gave us priority baggage for all of our bags so that was nice. They hung up my dress and my DH's suit, no problem (mon)

 

The bus ride: A

Beaches is easy to find in the airport. They have a nice air conditioned waiting area with beer, coffee, drinks, snacks, while you wait for the bus, which is also air conditioned. Our driver was very nice, we brang our drinks and stopped half way for a refill and bathroom break. It was 2hrs ride during rush hour and 1hr 15mins in the early AM.

 

At Beaches:

 

The rooms: B+

Clean, large, air conditioned. There were sewer and heated water issues the first night but the staff were very prompt and courteous and fixed everything. Stocked bar in the room, champagne waiting us. We had an "oceanfront suite" and learned that none of the rooms are on the beach per se, though we did have a great view with balconies etc:)

 

The resort: A

Beautiful. Large- it takes a good 10 minutes to walk from building 2 on one end to building 9 on the other. Pools were clean, water slides fun (one was scary because it was dark).. the beach is awesome, snorkeling easy to arrange, water trampolines fun, my matron of honor and her ex-Navy husband decided to take a little sail boat out and had to be rescued... made for a funny story. There are a few vendors around but they dont hassle, seems like they are a part of Beaches. There are jet skis to rent (haggle on price)...

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

 

the beach beds are $150 a day and include breakfast and lunch service for 5 (although she did more). Our server was wonderful and kept us with a full cooler, ice creams for my grandparents etc.

Click the image to open in full size.

 

 

Service: A++++

Awesome, prompt, friendly in every interaction- can't say enough nice things about them

Click the image to open in full size. (mimosas for my panty shower- in the Mill Restaurant)

 

Food: C+

Lots of variety and plentiful despite not having room service. A bit salty and oily... kind of like cruise food- the dinner for our reception everyone said was the best. This was the one disappointment of the trip (per my mom)... I honestly didnt eat that much.

 

more to follow...

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On-site coordinators: A++++

We had Shanakae and Simone- they took care of everything, even me forgetting to give my MOH my DHs ring! So nice and helpful.

 

Out of town bags: I think I overdid mine for the amount of time we were there but EVERYONE said they felt the love put into them. I went home early on the night we arrived and got up early the next morning to assemble and deliver them. We hung them on the doors, it worked out great! Some people used the travel mugs but honestly the drinks were plentiful enough you didnt need a mug- theyd make fresh ones as fast as you could drink them... no problem mon.

Click the image to open in full size.

 

Nightlife: A

Every night there is some kind of entertainment. One night there was a champagne and chocolate party, another night there were fire breathers, another night the superbowl on the jumbotron. The events end on the early side since it is a family resort but they do have a club there called Liquid that opens at 11. Our group closed it down every night. Very fun times :) DJ Bryan was our DJ at the reception and in the club. Nice guy.

 

Rehearsal:A

We had Jamaican buffet in the garden under tents. Again food was ok... tried curried goat which was tasty and full of bones (that's the way its supposed to be I'm told). We picked the location out once we got there.

 

Wedding day: A++++++++++++++++++++

Mani/pedi were well done and my DH liked his massage. The hairdresser did a good job I think... I took pictures to give her an idea of what I was looking for. My apt was at 12 (11 for nails) and the wedding was at 4 and seriously there was not a lot of time to spare. We only got a few snaps of all bridesmaids all together because one bridesmaid was still getting her hair did at 330. The coordinators were wonderful. I married my sweetie. I cant think of a thing except for that is was wonderful and surreal.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

 

 

(more pics in next entry)

 

Photography:A+

We brought in Jeremy Igo from Charlotte because we liked his online portfolio. He and his wife came, they booked as part of our group and we paid part of his resort stay. Have seen a few snaps and seems great so far. There was a challenge in that we ran out of daylight for pictures. It was less because of sunset and more becasue of the resort hurrying us along to start the reception (because the videographer wanted to video the first dance and we hadnt paid for the big package)... silly really, in hindsight, Id recommend asking the group to go on, and go finish your pictures.

 

Video: A

We got the basic package and are happy with it... the guy was nice and seemed to do a good job. It arrived promptly at our house a few days after we got home, no problem.

 

Reception: A+

We had our reception under a massive lit grass hut on the beach.

Click the image to open in full size.

It was magic. Centerpieces were simple because we wanted to spend the money on guests getting there instead of centerpieces... (still pretty)

Click the image to open in full size.

 

DJ Bryan played all requests. The dance floor was unfinished wood and was situated in the middle of the hut. Dinner was VERY slow to be served, our 3hrs of DJ was up before everyone had been served the appetizer- so they were threatening to pack up if we didnt pay more, which of course we did and from there things were great again.

 

 

Leaving sad.gif F!!!!!!!!

Hated to leave!

 

If anyone has any questions I am happy to answer, I had the hardest time getting a mental picture of what it would be like and would like to help.

 

I agree with everyone else's advice, try not to stress!! It will be amazing!

 

Here is the water from the walk I took on my wedding day morning cheesy.gif

Click the image to open in full size.

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Thought I might also add, that this was great for kids to grandparents. We felt safe, cared for, well treated and the grounds, rooms etc were immaculate. You get what you pay for :)

 

Oh and we had thought about taking everyone on a booze cruise to Rick's and had given up on the idea because the Beaches ones we $70 a head. - There were snorkeling booze cruises to Rick's for $20 buck a head (see the guys on the beach at the south side) and I bet you anything if you went to them with a good amount of cash, that you could arrange something for a large group at a great price, pretty easily.

 

Picture of breakfast/panty shower with the ladies: (a great idea, start married life with new underwear!)

Click the image to open in full size.

 

a picture of us heading out to snorkel:

Click the image to open in full size.

 

our first dance:

Click the image to open in full size.

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Thank you so much for the review!! Lots of great info! Do you have any pictures of the rehearsal dinner in the garden? That sounds amazing too! I can hardly wait for my wedding and it is more than a year away!!

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Beach Bride- I am looking for rehearsal dinner pics and I have ton of people but I dont think I have any with the set up. It was dark- there is like a U of buildings, facing the sea with the gazebo by the water in the middle. We had the rehearsal at the gazebo and then just walked over. They had a massive speaker with reggae music/soft rock (I was worried about that-no need). The tent was white and lit. Plastic chairs and long tables in rows with white table cloths. Fully stocked bar included with the food being an L on one side. They had a variety of food, not just the goat :)

 

this is the best pic I have (that shows 1 table):

Click the image to open in full size.

 

Oh and we saw 2 weddings each day... I was told that in a super busy month (like june), they do 100 weddings, thats an average of like 3 a day.

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