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karielk

Gran Caribe Real 2011 Brides

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Great review!!!   Thank you!

My fiance & I are getting married on 11/22/11 and were there on 11/22/10 for a site visit - I think we might have seen your wedding party taking pictures on the beach :)

 

For all the other GCR brides - here's my brief take on our site visit -

 

Room - I think we might have gotten the worst room location in the place because we had no view - just barely a glimpse of people as they walk the ramp from the beach to the pool area, but we still had an amazing stay.  The room condition was impeccable - marble floors & very clean.  Beds were really comfortable & the bathrooms were sleek & modern.

 

Food - We made it a point to try all the different restaurants to make sure the food was good - and while it was not gourmet it was definitely up to par- if not better than- other all-inclusive resorts I've been to. There are two different buffets (albatros & gaviotas) & something for everyone at both of them.  The sushi bar was just okay but I have pretty high standards for that kind of food - it is nice at night because you can hear the ocean while you eat.  You should certainly make reservations at Maria's - their food was great and our waiter was super accommodating.

 

Beach - the water was a bit chilly and the waves were rather rough, but after talking to some of the staff, we realized that the beach conditions were that way because of the full moon and are calmer near the new moon- so I'd check the lunar calendar if you want to get a sense of how the beach will be. There are ample beach chairs and we never had to worry about looking for a spot. Also, the sheer size of the beach is wonderful and it a spectacular to look at. 

 

Chapel - as all the pictures illustrate - it is absolutely beautiful.  There is a tennis court directly behind it, which is kind of an eyesore, but I doubt anyone will be paying attention to that during the ceremony and it doesn't creep into any pictures.

Food tasting -

Salad:
Trout salad with lettuce & green peanut sauce (RD3-2) - texture resembled tuna fish - we liked this but thought it might be too exotic for our guests
Caribbean salad with shrimp au smoked pineapple & jasmine flower pesto (PE-3) - the best of the three - shrimp was tender & presentation was great
Spinach soufflé with blueberry sauce au white wine flavor (SP-3) - would not recommend this - no flavor or texture - almost like a spinach pudding. 


Entree:

Red snapper stuffed with seafood, Chicken breast Casablanca stuffed with seafood, Beef fillet tournedo -  the fillet was the winner.  All of the options were plated beautifully.  We were concerned because some of our guests have allergies to dairy & MSG and the chef said that the fillet did not have either.  You can have an option for two different dishes, and you'd just have to let them know in advance of the counts for each dish. 

Dessert: all of these were amazing, but I think the hazelnut mousse was the best.
Hazelnut mousse with chocolate sauce (RD3-1)
Fruit mousse with warm chocolate sauce (PE-3)
Paris chocolate shell stuffed with fruit au white Cinzano flavor (SP-2)

 

Cake:  We actually forgot to book this ahead of time so our WC was nice enough to have one (Baily's with almonds) delivered to our room later that night.  It was remarkable - so delicious!, but we're thinking of having layers with other flavors (chocolate with raspberry and/or tres leches - anyone have thoughts on this?)

WC:  Diana was really helpful during the site visit.  We were with her for almost 3 hours and she was incredibly helpful.  She also showed us rooms (high level suites etc.) in both the GCR & Royal.  FYI - the WC offices are located in the Royal.

Interesting fact: Diana noted that if you stay at the Royal the night of the wedding (even if the ceremony & reception are at the GCR), it is the same price for the overall wedding but you have an international premium bar at the reception.  The other difference is that in event of bad weather (gasp!), the reception will be in the ballroom of the Royal.  We might book the wedding night and a couple extras days at the Royal to get these perks - and the rooms there are really beautiful (especially the one with direct access to the pool!). 

Albatros terrace - the green turf flooring is overwhelming, but the views are amazing - especially at night.  The other downside is that a number of rooms overlook the terrace - so it is not necessarily private.  Considering we're hoping to have 100+ people at our wedding, it is the best option. 

Overall resort - loved it!  We hope to have lots of family members & friends of all ages at our wedding and think this resort is a perfect fit.  There are activities to take part in if you like or lots of places to just relax.  We left feeling very at ease with our decision. 



 


 

 

Originally Posted by mykidsmomtx View Post

We had our wedding on 11/22.  Check out our review under the review section and let me know if questions!  We loved the Grand Caribe Real and were not disappointed.  Happy planning to all!



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Carmresu- Thank you so much for all of the details!!!! I am having my beach reception at the Royal but the ceremony will be at the chapel an GCR ! thank you for your input on the food!!!! I am so excited! i can not wait until my wedding!!

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Hi Gran Caribe Brides of 2011!

We just got back from our wedding, which was on 1/1/11, and Iâ€ve been so bad about posting a planning thread and updating my info on this board, but I thought Iâ€d put a “ short†review (this is sooo not short) on this thread so you ladies are prepared for your upcoming weddings this year…

Our wedding was at the Gran Caribe Oceanfront Gazebo.  Unfortunately, it was SUPER WINDY from 12/26 through 1/1/11, so I had Flor (our onsite coordinator) move our dinner reception and cocktail hour from the Gazebo terrace to a ballroom inside the Gran Caribe.  I was worried the whole first few days I was there, that our guests would not enjoy their food with the 16mph winds around them.  Sigh. One big disappointment, but Flor was able to accommodate my last minute request. They can make these location changes due to weather the day of.

So hereâ€s my breakdown and some tips…

[WC (onsite), Flor]

She did a great job. I had been battling with the emails like everyone else here, getting slow responses and such, but Flor was very quick on getting back to me even while I was on site.  Our final meeting, which was the day after we arrived, she finalized all the details, and was able to make some last minute changes for me.  We had less guests (9) then expected, and she credited me with whatever money was leftover to apply to spa services at both the Royal and Gran. We used it for a double massage. Nice.

But hereâ€s a tip when doing your final meeting.  Make sure you ask the coordinator to take a look at any rented linens, chairs, and other decorative details.  When our day arrived,  two big things did not go through for me.  The Tiffany chairs were WHITE instead of CHOCOLATE (I had arranged this through the WC Claudy via emails), and the CAKE was NOT the design I ordered.  Luckily, we had a small group, and I was too dazed the day of the wedding to care, but now that Iâ€m looking at photos of the reception, I regret not telling Flor to show me the chairsâ€s colors that I rented ($10 each) or to make sure the cake décor was absolutely correct.  I ordered a couture cake, and got the look of their signature cake instead. Yikes.

Other than the chair and cake fiasco, everything ran smoothly through Flor.

[flowers]

OMG.  Can I say that the quality of the flowers surpassed my expectations? Mexicans really take pride in their work, and the florist made me a GORGEOUS bouquet, along with the centerpiece, corsage for my mom and boutonnieres.  I had to choose a low red rose centerpiece in case the weather was windy, but I had originally wanted a taller glass vase, but the smaller centerpiece choice still looked wonderful. Gave our guests a chance to see each otherâ€s faces during dinner. But 5 stars for flowers! My bouquet, looked fantastic!

[Food]

We ordered the Cocktail Hour right after the ceremony and got 5 choices of cold and hot appetizers. Everything was phenomenal! Our guests were so happy with that portion, and thought that it was already the dinner.  Since we had to move our cocktail hour indoors, they had it set up with our dinner room so that all the food was in one place, and guests were able to take their food to the tables. Again, small group, anything goes.  Dinner was phenomenal, and I couldnâ€t ask for more. The presentation of each dish was gourmet and true culinary art.  Our guests were taking photos of each of their dishes.  We had the shrimp salad to start, the stuffed chicken, then the chocolate covered cheesecake for dessert.  Each item was delicious. 

[sound system]

We brought our iPod since we didnâ€t want to spend $800 on a DJ for 11 of us in one little room.  Good thing we did. None of the guests there dance in general, so it was fine that we didnâ€t allot a dance floor.  The sound system was a Bose system for both the ceremony and the reception dinner/cocktail hour.  Great sound, and our playlist was already playing when we entered the room.  They did great.  As for the ceremony, Flor asked the names of the songs for each portion of the ceremony, and even though I had already created playlists for the ceremony, I didnâ€t know we needed a song for the signing of the documents or the exit, so she was able to have the DJ at the gazebo find the songs we chose last minute for those parts, and it went smoothly. TIP: make sure you add your song choices ready … it all worked out great though.

[Cake]

I mentioned the mixup on the cake choice earlier.  But I will say that our cake tasted soooooo good.  Unfortunately, we all had so much food from the cocktail hour and the dinner to eat full slices, but everyone raved about our cake. I had asked for chocolate raspberry, but it seemed like they only made chocolate, cuz I did not taste any raspberry. For me, thatâ€s fine, but Iâ€m still not sure if Flor made that change when I requested it at our final meeting. Again, make sure you confirm those details via email in the document they send you prior to your trip. And again, at the meeting.  They sent the cake to us the next day in to-go boxes, and it was just as delicious the night of the wedding.  YUMMMMMM.

[TIFFANY CHAIRS]

I had always wanted Chiavari chairs for my reception, so I was excited when the Gran started renting these out. And like I said above, I had ordered Chocolate chairs to go with the chocolate silk linens I rented, but instead, got White chairs.  Not the look I had in mind, but again, by the time the wedding day came around, I didnâ€t care too much at the time.  My thoughts are on photos. But weâ€ll see. I ordered sashes to go on the chairs, but they used chiffon sashes, not satin, which to me, doesnâ€t look as elegant as silk/satin.  Our colors for the evening were chocolate and crimson, and the white chairs and bright red sashes threw me off. I make wedding invites and stationery for a living, so Iâ€m kinda picky about décor, so I was kinda disappointed in these details not working out.   But thatâ€s just me.

[Overall]

Canâ€t beat the location of the Gran Caribe. We originally chose the Gran as the location since we thought people would want to bring their children, but of course, only adults showed up.  But it all worked out. Anyone looking at the Albatros restaurant as a reception location (Terrace), it is gorgeous at night. Our photographer (Del Sol Photography) took awesome shots of the groom and myself on the Albatros Terrace, and the view was ethereal.   We got the Master Suite with Jacuzzi and Oceanview (Suite #2763), which was right by the Gazebo, so we had a decent ocean view, but it was NOT as pictured on the Real Resorts web site.  I was kinda disappointed in that, but it was still a nice room. AND we had full privileges at the Royal next door, and ended up having all our meals at the Royal during our 8 night stay.  We moved to Le Blanc for 4 days/nights after the wedding, which was super duper great, but Iâ€ll include that info in my planning thread (coming soon).  Hope this helps a bit, and feel free to send me a private message or post any questions on this thread!

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Thank you for the review!!! and congrats on your wedding!! please post some pics once you receive them from Del Sol!! OH and who did your hair and makeup?

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Originally Posted by Bride2B22 View Post

 

Thank you for the review!!! and congrats on your wedding!! please post some pics once you receive them from Del Sol!! OH and who did your hair and makeup?

 

 

Thanks! That's funny, I was just thinking, I forgot to post about the hair and makeup.  I had both hair and makeup done by Alma at the Royal Cancun spa and salon.  Her colleague did my mom's hair and makeup.  Mom was happy, which is rare since she's 150% pickier than me.  I was happy with Alma's work, since I didn't trust myself with bridal makeup.  I will post pics when i receive them from Del Sol, but I was happy with alma's work. My style was simple, long waves (completely down). I was freaked out at first, cuz she curled my hair pretty tightly, but by the time my ceremony came around, the curls relaxed and looked great.  Makeup -- I asked for something more on the natural side, and I was happy with how I looked in person -- I have yet to see how they turned out in the photos, but it was worth it. I had originally hoped to hire an outside vendor to do my hair/makeup in my room, but that $350 vendor fee was too much for me at the time of booking. I probably should have done it cuz I like photos where the bride is getting hair/makeup done.  Oh well.  The salon is just a quick walk from the Gran, so if any of you girls are getting it done there, it's pretty easy to do.  My appointment was at noon for hair, and 130 for makeup, and I was back in my suite by 2:30pm in time for Matt and his assistant to start taking getting ready photos before the 4pm ceremony.

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Thank you for the review.  I am getting married at the Royal in April and I am so worried about the hair and make up.  I ended up booking photos with La Luna to save money.  I can't wait to see your Del Sol pictures they do such an amazing job.  Congrats!

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We are also getting married in the royal in Oct 2012 and are looking to book with La Luna also. Do you have a pricelist from them that you could pass on???

 

Many thanks!

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