I think the decorations that come with the Gazebo are good especially when it comes with the package. Anything more than that is just extra costs that aren't needed. I had to ask Fatima to have the Terrace booked. I found it through a blog that I read and a picture I found online. It's more private than the pool and there's a separate entrance near the Secrets Resort that leads up to it.
Congrats on booking on the 19th! You're one week before me =) I'll have to look into the photography upgrade as well. I didn't even know that there was an upgrade but good to know now =).
Currently, I'm trying to keep my guest count at 25 since anything over 25 is additional. So it won't be too huge. As for reception decorations and favors, I'll be making those at home and bringing them to Mexico. Nothing too big and definitely nothing that customs may hold hostage of either. Since I'm trying to stay within budget, I've been designing our save the date cards and invitations which helped us save money there and the extra money can go towards an upgraded dinner package. Which dinner package are you opting for? I think my fiance is settled on the Platinum package, however I'll probably email Fatima if we have the option to have a buffet without having to do it at one of their restaurants.
You're so lucky that your cousin can DJ!! But just in case, they do charge a $100 to use an "outside vendor" =(. I'll have all my music playlists saved on my ipod so that it'll just play continuous for each part of the wedding.
The bonfire looks like fun but we haven't decided on any after reception activities yet. =( But we will be releasing the paper lanterns after the reception. Fatima charged $9 (minimum 10) however I'll be purchasing mine elsewhere and bringing them with me to wedding. =)
We also booked the gazebo for the ceremony and the pool deck. Is the La Vista Terrace the same as the pool deck? I didn't see that option in the wedding package, if there is an option that is more private than the pool deck that would be great.
Fatima finally emailed me back so I feel much better. We have secured May 19th! I think I am also going to use the in house photographer, I found out from another bride that they have some better upgrade packages than they might tell you up front. For $799 you can upgrade and get 500 photos on a CD, so practically all of them. Since the package only comes with like 30 or something? Which isn't very many. I also looked at Photoshoots Vallarta since they offer the discount for weekday but once I found out about the upgrade package with Vallarta Adventures I just decided to stay with them, just one less thing to organize! Although I really loved Photoshoots pictures they had sent me, I'm sure they will do a great job!
I'm also stuck on decorations, Fatima had sent me a photo of the Gazebo with this white organza fabric on each post and some white flowers tied to the front to two posts. I love the look of it, its so simple and elegant, but I'm afraid to even ask her how much they would charge to do that. It's probably way more than I want to spend.
How many guests do you have coming? I have 27 right now, so the reception won't be huge, I will only need to come up with a couple of centerpieces. I might even just decide to stick mine and my BM bouquets on the tables and call it a day! I think we are going to have to bite the bullet and rent the speakers for the reception, but will opt out of the dancefloor. My cousin who is coming to the wedding is a DJ so he is going to bring his computer and do that for us. But if he wasn't my next option was to use my ipod. Are you guys having live or recorded music at the ceremony?
We also booked a bonfire for the last night we are there, so I am excited for that!