We are getting married at EDR May 2012, but my cousin got married there in September 2010.
I am an avid scuba diver so I went on a scuba trip that I booked through the hotel once I got there, so I am not sure if it's through Lomas. If you are thinking about trying scuba diving, the resort did have a great option to take a couple of scuba lessons in the pool and then do a dive with a seasoned dive master right at your side. I highly recommend it to anyone looking to do something new! I actually got my start scuba diving when I did a resort dive (not through EDR, but I did watch their instructors in the pool and they were very good) and I felt very comfortable and safe! I used to love snorkeling and now I cannot stand it because it just doesnt compare to scuba diving! I highly recommend that!
Other guests went on a jet ski and snorkeling trip and they said it was definitely worth the money and they had a great time! The snorkeling around the beach at the resort is not very good at all, so you may want to go on the afternoon trip for a better view.
Like I said, my cousins wedding was in September and she had her private reception at La Isla, which is right next to the main pool and is outside with a huge grass roof. I thought the setting was fantastic though there were some rowdy/drunk patrons at the pool that you could hear during the speeches (someone from the wedding had to ask them to quiet it down for a bit). I thought the reception was great, but I started the evening off with a light grey dress and by the time the night was over, it was soaked with sweat and dark gray. Looking back at pictures from that night, I can tell at what point the pictures were taken based on the sheen of sweat on my body and the color of the dress. I know a lot of people were getting winded during the dancing because it was so humid and the entire wedding party, bride included, jumped in the pool at the end of the reception because they were so hot.
My fiance and I were originally booked for June 9, 2012 at EDR, but as I was watching the weather this past year around the beginning of June, and we started to get nervous because it was getting into the upper 80s and lower 90s, and I knew first hand out humid it gets down there. Needless to say, we decided to move our date up to early May to try and avoid some of the heat.
We also decided to get married on the beach at Gazebo 55 after A LOT of research on the different options. I really liked the gazebo right next to the salt water pool on the beach, but my travel agent let me know that when it gets really hot and there is a breeze, the salt water pool smells less than fresh and I didnt want to be turning up my nose the entire wedding. We settled on Gazebo 55 because of the location: no "whales" i.e. sandbags in the water behind it), and its on a further side of the resort so there wouldnt be very much traffic from other weddings or hotel guests. We also liked that there was enough space to have the cocktail party right next to the ceremony area, so our guests did not have to go very far to get some light snacks and beverages. We are doing a majority of our pictures before hand, but my FI and i dont want to see one another before the ceremony, so we will do all of ours and combined pictures after. Having the guests be relatively close by means they can watch and enjoy the cocktail reception. We are serving light appetizers and our specialty drinks at the cocktail hour, complete with a beach/reggae playlist on my ipod.
We are still having a sit-down dinner and dancing after that, but because I didnt want my guests being too sticky and hot to enjoy themselves, we actually chose an indoor ballroom the Salon Dorado. The space looks gorgeous with marble floors and tall white columns, so I cannot wait! My MOH initially asked me why I would have an indoor reception in a destination wedding and I just explained I didnt want myself or my guests being too warm to dance and let loose, and I figured everyone would be in the sun all week, during the ceremony, and the cocktail hour, so I was perfectly fine with being comfortable in the a/c for a portion of the evening. That and my fiance gets VERY cranky when he gets warm, and I did not want a groomzilla on our wedding day! LOL
Once I explained my reasoning, she definitely could see why I opted for the a/c.
As for the food, we are going with a mahi mahi option and the surf-n-turf option, both of which I had at my cousins and they were sooo delicious! We are only doing a cutting cake, since the dinner comes with dessert options. My cousin said she ended up regretting getting a 3-tiered cake because: there were only 3 flavor options, the only icing they will do is fondant (very pretty, yucky tasting) and everyone enjoyed the desert plates so much, only a couple of people had some cake! I'm not a huge cake person and neither is my fiance, but we both wanted the tradition of cutting the cake, so we are going to get a small cake and do the ceremonial cake cutting actually before dinner is served! My grandmother whom I was very close to and is unfortunately no longer with us used to always prefer dessert first and say " why wait? it's the most delicious part of a meal! If this were my last few moments on earth, I'd rather have a banana split than meat and potatoes!", so I always remember her explaining that to me and I think it'd give her a laugh. Made my dad tear up a bit when I told him the reasoning behind it too )
As for the set up fee, I have read on this message board that sometimes the WC at the resort does these things for free, while other times, I have heard of them charging for it. I guess technically they do charge for it, so if anyone has experience with it, I would like to know as well.
For our rehearsal dinner, I saw a picture of the space decorated with colorful paper lanterns, so we are going to do something similar with our wedding colors. I asked if someone from my family could set those up to avoid any fees, but she explained that since it would require a ladder to hang them, it would be against the resort policy, which I totally get! But for our cocktail reception tall tables in the sand, I want to go with a white table cloth, blue bow, and I found these amazing blue river rocks with seashells and starfish (yay TJ Maxx!) that I want sprinkled in the center of each table, just to give it some pop, but not take away from the gorgeous landscape! I refuse to pay $5 a setup/table for someone to dump rocks on a table, so I already have a close friend tasked with scampering over after/before the ceremony and just dumping them in the middle of the table!