Getting Married inn Turks & Caicos Feb 2012 - TA? Wedding Planner? The Sands? Need advice
Posted 30 October 2011 - 05:18 PM
Posted 05 November 2011 - 08:05 AM
Posted 11 November 2011 - 02:11 PM
Hi BeachCzarina! Unfortunately I have never been to T&C or attended a wedding there, so I can't answer your questions, but I am also considering a wedding at The Sands and a dinner reception at Bay Bistro for a small November 2012 wedding for 30-60 guests. What information/details have you received from them? Who are you using as a wedding coordinator?
From what I understand, the wedding package at The Sands starts at $1495 per couple for up to 10 people, plus extra per additional guest. The package includes "set up and decorations" -- do you know what this entails?? I've looked through many photos from weddings at The Sands from the Tropical Imaging blog and I wonder if those decorations are "extras" planned by/with the wedding coordinators. I'd love to know what the bouquet and cake look like for this basic package?
Thanks in advance and good luck with your wedding planning
Posted 13 November 2011 - 12:08 PM
We actually love the Sands personally. When we have had friends/family come on island and not had enough room for them at the house, the Sands has been where they stay (some friends have stayed at Villa del Mar and Point Grace as well). The rooms at the Sands are great and the fact that there are empty beach lots on either side makes the beach really quiet. It's also in a nice walking distance from other resorts/restaurants and shops which is nice. All of the rooms were updated 3 years ago, and Hemingways is a great little restaurant as well.
I can't give you specifics on Travel agents, but we do like turkandcaicosreservations.tc for hotel bookings as they seem to keep all of the current deals/offers on all of the hotels in one place. If you check Trip Advisor, a lot of people like them as they are located on island and sometimes get better deals than the current listings on the hotels website. Flights, well they are just expensive down here really compared to other locations. I would check weekly on prices and snap them up if you see anything in the 400-500 range. Occasionally Jet Blue will have slightly less, but not often.
Environmental Arts and The Flower Girl are the only two florists on island. Most of our brides/planners/resorts work with Environmental Arts. Their stuff is more varied/modern etc and offer a wider range of options. Prices aren't going to vary much between the two as all the flowers have to be flown in; we're a desert island really so not much grows here that makes great bouquets other than Bougaenvilla.
Rehearsal dinner options at the Palms: I have seen them do rehearsal dinners on their lower pool deck overlooking the ocean. It's normally a buffet. There are sometimes some guests in the infinity pool when the dinner starts as people are mingling around, but it's pretty private once the sun starts going down.
February is usually not a "Busy" month although there are a few more people around over President's day weekend. You'll see more people around than in September, but really the only time I have felt we were getting busy was during Easter Break last year, and in all honesty it still was quiet compared to East Coast Beaches I grew up going to. Beaches Resort is the only place I see that the beach has lots of people there. Most guests at other resorts spread out and really there aren't a ton of them there.
Hope that helps
Posted 26 November 2011 - 01:16 PM
We got married in April in the Turks and had all of our 35 guests stay at the Sands. We had our rehearsal dinner there as well. (The ceremony and reception were at the Seven Stars). I also used Eye Spice for my photography.
For my group, the Sands was perfect. Great location, reasonable prices, excellent casual restaurant right on the property, great stretch of beach, complimentary water toys, walking distance to other restaurants, etc. I booked a block of rooms directly through the Sands and had people call them (at their call center in Florida) to book. I was able to get reduced rates on all the room types. People who wanted bigger rooms could choose those while others could select the smaller less expensive rooms if preferred. The only thing I wanted to change was the release date. Our wedding was April 9 and the room block was released in mid-January. I wish they could have kept that open for a little while longer. They did still agree to honor the rates after the release though, so it didn't become an issue. I'm sure you can read the reviews on TripAdvisor about the actual hotel - there are nicer hotels and this is a moderate level hotel but that's what I needed for my group of guests. It turned out to be perfect for us.
Our rehearsal dinner at Hemingways was excellent.They were extremely flexible with us and everything turned out great. We had the entire deck area and they set up a bar just for our group. The manager was a little 'island-y' in that he was a little relaxed in booking everything, but I will say it all came together exactly as promised. They were extremely accomodating in a special menu and even took requests from the guests as they ordered. Very pleased with the dinner.
We and our guests also ate at Hemingways throughout our stay and thought it was a great restaurant. The views are super, food is quite good and the prices are more reasonable than most other places we found. I had guests that ate all three meals there and really enjoyed it.
Eye Spice (Jon Nickson) worked out great. The main reason I chose him is that I thought his pictures are less 'art-sy'. I appreciate the gorgeous shots that Tropical Imaging takes, but many of their shots are more artistic. I knew those would be nice to look at it, but I would never frame those types of pics. I wanted pictures of us at our wedding and Jon captured those beautifully. He was quite flexible as well. He communicated promptly with me via email, was willing to take a 'must-have' list of photos and turned the photos around to me before I even left the island. This was really great to get to see our pictures so quickly while we were still on the high of the wedding. We bought the rights to the photos so we got a CD of about 500 pictures (we had him come for an hour of our rehearsal dinner and then on the big day, from getting ready through to our first dance). He's very quick in taking pictures - not much posing, but kept it moving so we had plenty of time to go to our own cocktail hour (per our request). He got some great sunset shots. Probably the only thing I wished he would've have done was to more vocally 'get people together' and ask them for some shots during the cocktail hour. He was definitely in the background, which was fine for most of the wedding, but I wish I would've have requested a few more candids of our guests. I think had I done this, he would have had no problem with this request. I was very pleased with our photos though and have a whole wall of them in our house.
Hope that helps!
Posted 26 November 2011 - 01:19 PM
PS - About 15 of us ate at Bay Bistro one night and had an excellent meal. We had friends eating all over the island, including many of the really high-end places and many people thought it was the best restaurant on the island. If their catering is anything like the restaurant, the food will be great!
Posted 16 January 2012 - 05:35 PM
We have stayed at The Sands and loved it. It was nice and quiet with few children and nice quiet beach. But I think most of the Grace Bay was quiet and relaxing with the exception of Beaches which was beyond crowded and the only place I would never stay in T&C because all though it was all-inclusive it didn't look relaxing at all.
We also ate many meals at Hemingways because it was good, had a nice atmosphere and the prices were reasonable compared to a lot of other restaurants. Lots of palapas, umbrellas, and chairs for beach bumming and they had some hobie cats, kayaks, windsurfing equipment, snorkel gear, and bikes that are complimentary.
The food at Bay Bistro was excellent. I think they can set up a tent on the beach for private parties.
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