St. Lucia is gorgeous (even though I've never been!)! It was just going to be too expensive for our guests and we weren't going to save any money on the wedding either. Half Moon is not cheap, but I think it will actually be comparable in price to some of the all-inclusives we were considering.
We are expecting 30 as "definites" (that's the number I have been using for budgeting and that's what I would prefer). But I fear we may end up with over 50. We have not yet sent out any formal invites or save-the-dates, but I think our invite list of just family and close friends will still be large (125-150).
I have been to Jamaica a few times, plus we both have friends from the island so we pretty much know what to expect...but I've never been to Half Moon, so I'm very excited. For the chefs, we are counting on some of our local friends to take us to a regular grocery store to pre-stock the villas with food and liquor. We wanted to pre-stock all of the villas, to avoid an extra expense for our guests...but I have no idea how much this may cost! Do you know what the Half Moon charges to pre-stock the villas for the week?
But I decided to just go with the most basic wedding package...ceremony, cocktail hour, catered reception with open bar. I haven't discussed any other events with my planner. But hopefully all of my guests will choose to stay in the Villas. If we rent 3 villas, we will have 3 chefs for our use, 3 private pools, and I can purchase my own alcohol. Danielle even told me that the Butler will act as a bar tender/mixologist. That's sounds like a party to me without the added formalities (and expense) of organizing a catered event.
One question: Did your planner inform you of any perks or extras that may come with hosting a wedding on the property? My only gripe so far is that the Half Moon doesn't really seem to offer any "perks" for the couple. We get a bottle of champagne and turn-down service with our package. But they only offer 1 free night for the bride and groom if we bring in 25 rooms! Some of the other hotels I considered offered multiple free nights (starting at 10 rooms), plus free nights on your anniversary, spa services, and even a catamaran cruise and private dinner!