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Looking for questions, comments to share with Sandals/Beaches weddings!

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#1 JenniferSS



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    Posted 22 May 2010 - 11:45 AM

    I have a meeting scheduled with the head of weddings for Sandals, Beaches & Royal Plantation on Monday to clarify some of the new policies and get updates on the MS weddings, also get a peek into what is coming up next ( I've heard rumors of additional MS packages coming doen the road!).

    Does anyone have any questions that you would like for me to ask ? Any comments that you would like to share?

    Please keep your comments constructive - state the issue and what you would like to see happen instead!

    Also if you considered Sandals/Beaches/Royal Plantation but then decided to get married elsewhere - I'd love to have your input as to why.

    It's a great opportunity to share what you like & don't like about weddings with Sandals and get questions answered!

    #2 delnel24

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      Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:34 PM

      1. I would like to see more sunset weddings or later in the day weddings. When they offered our times they said we could pick from 11AM, 12PM, 1PM and the latest was 2PM This is in the middle of the hot day. They said if I wanted a later wedding I would have to upgrade to the $6000 MS theme. I almost left Sandals for this reason and went to Couples because they offer much better wedding times. I would have moved to a different resort but I had over 30 people already booked.

      2. Hire Wedding Coordinators that call you back.

      3. $500 for each additional table when you upgrade to a theme is ridiculous. I can understand if someone is having several (like 100 guests) to charge them a higher set up fee but come on. $500 for each table of 8?

      4. The pricing for the photography seems like a rip off. $1200 for 48 pictures?
      We should also be able to see the photographers work for other weddings before we commit to it. I would also like to see being able to bring in your own photographer. Several of the other resorts let you do this. Photography at Sandals is a HUGE concern for several of the brides. I'm sure this alone has lost several customers. At Couples they have a great photographer who is a true professional and not just trained to take pictures with KODAK. You can go to his website and see all of his pictures before hand and the pricing is much more reasonable.

      #3 delnel24

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      • 24 posts

        Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:42 PM

        This is the link to Michael's website. He's the photographer for RIU Resorts. I like that they send you his website to be able to see all the pictures, pricing and can even contact him before your wedding. I would really like to see Sandals do something like this. To hire a team of true professionals. Sandals is supposed to be the best and the photography just doesn't cut it.

        Anyway here is his link.

        best images

        #4 momx2

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        • 42 posts

          Posted 22 May 2010 - 08:27 PM

          Hi Jennifer,

          My issue is that they will not allow outside vendors for photography. I find it ridiculous that I have to pay for a three night stay especially when my photographer is a local. I totally understand that they are running a business, but the fair way to address this issue is maybe charge a reasonable fee if a bride decides to use non Beaches/Sandals photography. They way the policy is now you are almost forced to use their services (which may be hit or miss) as most people do not want to pay for the minimum required stay. It is the brides day, and I do not feel that they should dictate on something as important as pictures.

          #5 *Meagan*

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            Posted 22 May 2010 - 08:37 PM

            MOMX2- the problem with beaches turks and caicos and the local photographers; Tropical Imaging whom I used as well. Is we could technically use outside photographers etc BUT they know the staff from tropical imaging because they used to work at Beaches! They would not let me hire Tropical Imaging and do a three night stay with them. Even if we paid for it. I asked many managers and such. It was strange. I dont get it.

            delnel24- I agree with everything you said!
            They didnt give you the option of 3pm or 4pm? Our wedding was at 4pm.. for no extra charge.

            I agree. Hire wedding coordinators that arent out for commission.

            #6 DWbridetobe

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            • 914 posts

              Posted 22 May 2010 - 10:50 PM

              My comments:

              Wedding Coordinators: Mine (and I'm not sure if this applies for all of them) seems to be very under-informed. Every time I email her with questions, it takes multiple days to get a response. When I do get a response, her answers are copy and pasted from the Sandals website. Now I, and almost every other bride I know, is very informed about the companies that they are handing thousands of dollars to. If the information on the website had satisfied my question, I wouldn't be asking again. I realize that Unique Vacations (the company whom the WC's are from) isn't Sandals, but they ARE representing the Sandals brand.

              Cost of the "free wedding": This wedding package is far from free. I feel like this is a mis-representation.

              I'm inclined to agree with the wedding times. The latest time we were offered was 2:00 p.m., which is during the hottest time of the day. It also makes it difficult to time sunset photos and events.

              Although my videography/web-streaming issue has been solved by a manager at Unique Vacations, for future brides, when will this feature be available for the rest of the resorts, particularly in Saint Lucia?

              I think that's all the input I have for now. I'll be sure to post if I think of any more.

              #7 momx2

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                Posted 22 May 2010 - 11:44 PM

                I actually have something in writing which states that they will allow them on the resort for the dates of the reservation, but even with that I am keeping my fingers crossed.

                #8 kelly1214

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                • 92 posts

                  Posted 23 May 2010 - 12:57 AM

                  my main issues-

                  1. lack of communication before the wedding. A full price list explaining all the fees and options for our wedding would've been nice. I know the Martha Stewart stuff changed a lot of it but it was a huge frustration not knowing what was included and what wasn't and what I'd have to pay extra for. I feel like my wedding coordinator didn't care to volunteer information to us, we had to pull everything out of her...

                  2. The wedding coordinator in Miami. She was very hard to get a straight answer out of. Things she said didn't make sense and pretty much made me not trust a word that came out of her mouth. I felt like she just wanted to make money off of me, not help me plan the 'carefree wedding' as described.

                  3. The photography as stated by the other brides. There is a HUGE lack of communication on what is available for us to purchase and what the costs are. The only information presented in the welcome kits is regarding packages, nothing regarding prices to individually purchase pictures, nothing about purchasing the photographs individually on a CD. I feel like the resort took advantage of us when it comes to the photography.

                  The quality of the photographer we had was mediocre too. My family's photographs were as good if not better than hers. She also was late in getting to my room (we actually had to wait for her to get there so I could go to my ceremony). She was rude to my guests too which really ticked me off.

                  Hands down my biggest disappointment from my wedding with my experience with the photographers and photoshop people.

                  Momx2- good luck with getting outside venders in. Our photographer from tropical imaging said the security office gave him a really hard time getting in and he didn't even have his camera!

                  #9 kelly1214

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                  • 92 posts

                    Posted 23 May 2010 - 01:01 AM

                    To clarify my above post-

                    I used Beaches photographers for my wedding (required) and Tropical Imaging for trash the dress pictures off resort a couple days after the wedding.

                    Beaches- mediocre
                    Tropical Imaging- AMAZING!!!

                    #10 DWbridetobe

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                    • 914 posts

                      Posted 23 May 2010 - 03:21 AM

                      I agree with Kelly. A full pricing list would have been fabulous. I've asked my WC numerous times for one, and even posted here on the forums a few weeks ago looking for one. The MS wedding brochure they send us only mentioned pricing of upgrades, and additional items for sale, like dresses, cake cutting knives, champagne flutes, etc. It does not include the costs of pre-ceremony decor (which my WC told me starts at $500, and is completely unreasonable to me), and other costs that seem to appear out of no where. Upfront communication is something I've found lacking. Hopefully for future brides this can be fixed.

                      I'm also still wondering if my resort (Sandals Regency La Toc - Saint Lucia) allows sparklers. My WC have given me both a yes, and a no answer.

                      Thanks Jennifer!

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