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Paradisus Punta Cana (PPC) Brides POST HERE!!

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The wedding rehearsal was on Friday at 5 PM. The rehearsal dinner was at "Terra" the steakhouse, because the reception dinner was the seafood buffet. We didn't get a separate section, but had 4 large round tables towards the back. The steaks were wonderful, and we got a giant platter of potatoes, corn and mixed vegetables for each table. This and Luna were the largest capacity, and could seat our 35-37 people without taking up the whole restaurant.  We also ate at the Chinese restaurant Qi, when we had 14 people. This place had the largest servings ( good if you have big eaters). "Romantico" had the smallest portions and the slowest service. Interesting food, though. We never got to the Japanese Restaurant "Sakura" because it was too small and we had too many people. For breakfast, the buffet "Ciel" was excellent, and we usually did the lunch buffett at "Luna". It was really very good, especially for resort food. Since the resort was full that week, we sometimes had to wait on line for a meal, but not more than a few minutes.

 The part of the trip that I was most worried about was the wedding itself. That part was perfect. Miguelina and Elizabeth set up everything exactly the way my daughter planned, down to the ribbon on the canopy and the petals in the aisle. The food was excellent ( get the shrimp and avocado hor d'oerves) the Oriental lanterns looked pretty and the Carribean Celebrations people set the reception tables perfectly.The ceremony was planned on the beach in front of the gazebo,  and the wedding party walked up through the gazebo and down the beach to the canopy. The hor d'oerves tables were set up  beside the gazebo, and the servers passed glasses of champagne. My daughter had a civil ceremony, but it ended up being such a hassle of paperwork that I would suggest doing it at home. The judge was going to come on Saturday morning for the legal paperwork and signatures, but didn't come until Monday morning. A family friend of the groom read the ceremony that the bride and groom put together. That was much more meaningful to us all. The  reception was set up down the beach outside the Gabi Club bar, which was closed to all but the wedding party.

     I am attaching a few photos that friends and family took, as we do not have any of the HDC photos yet.

 

 

 

 

weddingpics.docx

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From my experience, i got to the resort Saturday night and met with Miguelina Sunday morning for our wedding coordination meeting. At that moment i decided i wanted to host a reception dinner and had never made previous plans to this. But that meant it had to take place the next day as my Wedding was tuesday. Within 24 hours Miguelina set up my rehearsal dinner for 32 people at Gabi, set menu (with great options that i got to pick), she printed personalized menus for the tables for me and the next day it was all set up perfectly without any issues and at no extra cost. 

 

And no offence to Lmazz and her experience and review because every review is appreciated, i just think that when you are on island time...whats the rush? If things are a bit slow, kick your feet up and relax. The reason i am commenting this and not ignoring it is that i know how easily things can stress us out and each and every bride wants their wedding experience (for themselves and guests) to be perfect but you cant sweat the small stuff or you will drive yourself crazy. Embrace every minute you are on your holidays. Take those extra few minutes, when service is slow or the trolley takes a detour, to enjoy the company around you and take in your surroundings. Use the time to take pictures etc...

 

During my stay we stayed one week in the reserve with our 32 guests and one week at Royal Service and no one had any room issues so i guess this has to be hit or miss and perhaps because it was so busy the week they were at the resort they were put in the rooms or buildings not yet renovated. I would ask your TA before hand to put a note on your file that you would like to be in the newly renovated rooms. Also, if you go in a non busy time you will likely get upgraded to the reserve. 

 

hope that makes you feel better cdc

 

Originally Posted by cdc150 View Post

Lmazz, I'm confused.... you just went to the lobby to book a reservation for all 38 people to avoid the $15? I would love to do some sort of "rehearsal" dinner but don't want to pay the resort any more money since they are charging so much already. 

 

Also, what was wrong with the rooms?  I keep hearing there are room problems, but you would think at this point they would be fixed? 

 

How was the wedding itself?

 

Any other insight would be appreciated! 
 



 



 

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Maridr I contact Theresa and this is what she quoted me:

 

Base rate for my full service is $875.00CDN. Any wedding over $10,000.00 will be 10% of the final invoice total. This includes my full support and complete planning from the moment you book, until the moment you say “I DOâ€
 

Originally Posted by maridr2012 View Post

Ayansi08:  Is Theresa's fee as wedding planner high?  I also had the pleasure of working with her shortly before she was let go, and she was wonderful.  Unfortunately, by the time I actually paid my deposit and locked in my date, she was already gone.  I may very well reach out to her.  I already booked PPC for my November 2012 wedding, and all of the posts on here are starting to really concern me.  

 

I definitely DONT want to use Arrecife.  I dont like the style of their photography...I've seen so many of their photos on blogs and they leave me un-impressed.  I'm leaning towards HDC...so I need to get on the ball very quickly about finding out for sure what all these penalties and extra fees are.  PPC is very expensive and even though I'm having about 80 people for my wedding, they weren't willing to provide a group rate unless I signed a contract...which I'm not willing to take on that financial responsibility.  Its ridiculous that they are now trying to find ways to upcharge bridal couples now for not using their preferred photographer..which sorry to be blunt...SUCKS A$$.angry.gif

 

 



 

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Thanks lmazz729 for your review and feedback regarding the resort. It was really helpful!

 

Although I can't download attachments right now, I'm sure the pictures are beautiful. I look forward to seeing your pictures from the photographer
 

Originally Posted by lmazz729 View Post

The wedding rehearsal was on Friday at 5 PM. The rehearsal dinner was at "Terra" the steakhouse, because the reception dinner was the seafood buffet. We didn't get a separate section, but had 4 large round tables towards the back. The steaks were wonderful, and we got a giant platter of potatoes, corn and mixed vegetables for each table. This and Luna were the largest capacity, and could seat our 35-37 people without taking up the whole restaurant.  We also ate at the Chinese restaurant Qi, when we had 14 people. This place had the largest servings ( good if you have big eaters). "Romantico" had the smallest portions and the slowest service. Interesting food, though. We never got to the Japanese Restaurant "Sakura" because it was too small and we had too many people. For breakfast, the buffet "Ciel" was excellent, and we usually did the lunch buffett at "Luna". It was really very good, especially for resort food. Since the resort was full that week, we sometimes had to wait on line for a meal, but not more than a few minutes.

 The part of the trip that I was most worried about was the wedding itself. That part was perfect. Miguelina and Elizabeth set up everything exactly the way my daughter planned, down to the ribbon on the canopy and the petals in the aisle. The food was excellent ( get the shrimp and avocado hor d'oerves) the Oriental lanterns looked pretty and the Carribean Celebrations people set the reception tables perfectly.The ceremony was planned on the beach in front of the gazebo,  and the wedding party walked up through the gazebo and down the beach to the canopy. The hor d'oerves tables were set up  beside the gazebo, and the servers passed glasses of champagne. My daughter had a civil ceremony, but it ended up being such a hassle of paperwork that I would suggest doing it at home. The judge was going to come on Saturday morning for the legal paperwork and signatures, but didn't come until Monday morning. A family friend of the groom read the ceremony that the bride and groom put together. That was much more meaningful to us all. The  reception was set up down the beach outside the Gabi Club bar, which was closed to all but the wedding party.

     I am attaching a few photos that friends and family took, as we do not have any of the HDC photos yet.

 

 

 

 



 

weddingpics.docx

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Janet, thanks once again for your valuable feedback! It is always great to hear from a bride who is truly walking in the same steps that we are walking in and has the same concerns. You posted a great tidbit in your feedback that reminds us all to just relax and get into the island spirit! After all that is what makes a destination wedding special. Please continue contributing to this thread and forum as your feedback has been a tremendous help!
 

Originally Posted by Janet1480 View Post

From my experience, i got to the resort Saturday night and met with Miguelina Sunday morning for our wedding coordination meeting. At that moment i decided i wanted to host a reception dinner and had never made previous plans to this. But that meant it had to take place the next day as my Wedding was tuesday. Within 24 hours Miguelina set up my rehearsal dinner for 32 people at Gabi, set menu (with great options that i got to pick), she printed personalized menus for the tables for me and the next day it was all set up perfectly without any issues and at no extra cost. 

 

And no offence to Lmazz and her experience and review because every review is appreciated, i just think that when you are on island time...whats the rush? If things are a bit slow, kick your feet up and relax. The reason i am commenting this and not ignoring it is that i know how easily things can stress us out and each and every bride wants their wedding experience (for themselves and guests) to be perfect but you cant sweat the small stuff or you will drive yourself crazy. Embrace every minute you are on your holidays. Take those extra few minutes, when service is slow or the trolley takes a detour, to enjoy the company around you and take in your surroundings. Use the time to take pictures etc...

 

During my stay we stayed one week in the reserve with our 32 guests and one week at Royal Service and no one had any room issues so i guess this has to be hit or miss and perhaps because it was so busy the week they were at the resort they were put in the rooms or buildings not yet renovated. I would ask your TA before hand to put a note on your file that you would like to be in the newly renovated rooms. Also, if you go in a non busy time you will likely get upgraded to the reserve. 

 

hope that makes you feel better cdc

 



 



 

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Looking forward to hearing your progress! I'm getting married May 26th so will be sure to pass anything additional along.

 

From what I've been told so far, the new fees are not applicable to contracts previously in place or resort guests. We have an outside photographer, but she will be staying as a guest of the resort.
 

Originally Posted by johnm View Post

I've been reading through quite a few posts on this site recently. Thank you to all of you for the help. I'm the groom and I've been put in charge of pretty much all the planning. We've already booked PPC and will be getting married on June 7, 2012. We're still working out all our details but do have the gazebo reserved. I will certainly share anything worthwhile. We're picking our photographer right now too so I'm concerned about the potential for increased fees/costs. 



 

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So glad I finally got the hang of this. I tried to post the pictures but I guess you can't unless you pay the $30 to be a supporter.

Sorry about the confusion about the rehearsal dinner. We asked Lauren before the final payment and she told us it was $15 extra per person over 20 people. When we got to the resort we didn't ask Miguelina, we booked the "Terra" ourselves through the lobby reservation desk, as well as the "Luna" the night before. Either way, you get a great dinner with all your guests!

     I also appreciate what Janet said about "island time" but when guests are complaining about their rooms to you, you tend to get upset. I don't want to make it sound like that's all that happened, but it was more than half of the guests, including the groom's parents.

 

 

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Some of the room problems were simple, like no umbrella or bath towels. One room had a leaky roof, and another had an A/C issue. The reservations were not always correct either: no jacuzzi when it was paid for, and doubles rather than a king-sized bed. These are not major things, but the number of them added up to an annoyance. Also, things don' t get fixed very fast either. Our toilet backed up and wasn't fixed for about 24 hours. None of this mattered in the long run. The resort, the beach, the food, the sun and ( most importantly) the wedding, were beautiful and special. My daughter and son in law had their perfect wedding. Everything was beautiful and extremely well-coordinated by the Romance team at  the resort. Everything was exactly the way they wanted, and celebrated with a group of people who traveled very far to share it with them.

     I am posting the things that can (not necessarily will) go wrong.

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@trivera5521:  Thanks for the info on Theresa's service fees!  Her rate doesn't sound too bad actually, I thought it'd be more.  However; I think I'm going to pass on getting an additional planner.  Right now I'm in "lock down saving mode", so EVERY penny counts.  

 

 

PPC brides:  I did speak with the Romance department in Miami, specifically with Marilyn who is the manager, regarding the new external vendor fee they added.  She confirmed this is true; however the fee would only apply to external vendors if you booked your wedding @ PPC in 2012.  Luckily, I booked my wedding in Dec 2011 (for 2012) so I am excluded from this.

 

Also, my FI and I decided that we are having a maximum of 70 people, thats it (I still think too much but I'm letting it go).  Anyway, I've been so stressed out trying to figure out where to have our reception because according to all the documents I've received the maximum capacity in most of their spaces is only 60 people, and I thought we'd have to go with the ballroom which I really disliked or worse yet, have to privatize a restaurant which would be a minimum of an additional $5,000 (for El Romantico) and as high as $9,000 (for the Gabi restaurant).  These options were EXTREMELY worrisome to me because once you privatize a restaurant, you are not able to apply a wedding package to it, you have to itemize absolutely everything (except the food and drinks).  Needless to say...I wanted to cry everytime I thought about it.  

 

Anyway, I had a call with Veronica from the Miami office to go over these issues because I didnt want to have to privatize a restaurant but wasnt quite sure how to calculate everything correctly using their budget calculator file.  After my call today I feel much better; we will continue our conversation tomorrow because she had to leave the office.  She did explain several things to me and told me the pool terrace AND foyer/terraces which say "maximum capacity 60 people" can actually fit about 72 people.  Granted, it'll be a little tight, but its do-able.  

 

Here is my suggestion to all PPC brides that are doing a site inspection..I'm offering this up because it's a lesson learned for me:  Try to get your hands on the most recent budget calculator from PPC BEFORE you go for your site inspection (get it from the Romance Dept in Miami which is their headquarters).  Also, when you are at the property doing your inspection, do a tasting from the plated menu AND the buffet menu.  We only tasted the plated menu, but really like the pool terrace for our reception and plated menu is NOT an option there because there are no restaurants near the pool terrace.  So, if we do it there we are forced to have a buffet style meal and we didnt get to taste the wedding menu for buffet style!  Also, during your site inspection, ask, ask, ask, and ask some more!  Ask anything and everything!  Now looking back, I wish I would've asked about space constraints with dance floor added, extra lighting fixture costs, seeing examples of their centerpieces (if you choose to get if from them), see the space for a semi-private rehearsal dinner, etc.  Just keep asking questions and dont be afraid to speak up!

 

Hope this helps you all in some way.  As I continue to get information, I will share!

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