Our wedding was February 9, 2013 at the Melia Caribe Tropical Resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. We had 26 friends and family members travel from New Orleans, Maryland, Arizona and Texas. It was the best time of our lives and the wedding day was the best day of our lives. We would not change one single thing (maybe have the groomsmen kept their pants on).
Iâ€™d also like to thank everyone on this forum. I could never have planned this wedding without the ideas, creativity, and support on this forum.
The Melia Caribe Tropical resort is absolutely beautiful. It is a very large resort plenty for everyone to do. We were upgraded to a Royal Beach Suite upon Arrival.
Check-in/Guest Rooms B-
We arrived on February 6th at about 4pm. The rest of group arrived February 7th at 4pm, with a few with a check-in on February 8th. We waited to greet our guests with welcome bags. We booked a room block over a year in advance but our guests were spread out throughout the resort, it was disappointing.
Welcome Dinner A+
We held a welcome dinner the day after everyone arrived at the Dominican Restaurant, which has a large semi-private room to accommodate a large group. We gave decoration to our wedding coordinator and she set them up beautifully! Food was ok at the Dominican restaurant not the greatest. We had a Mardi Gras themed welcome dinner.
Melia Wedding Coordinator A++
Our wedding coordinator was Heniciy Santana .we gave her all thing for our ceremony and she set-up for us bride and groom signs for the chairs, fans for the chairs and our sand ceremony. She also made sure our cake was delivered to the La Barcaza.
The Wedding A++
Our wedding was magical. We chose the Melia wedding package. Which is the â€œfreeâ€ package. But it is only for 12 people so we had to pay extra for champagne and cake for the rest of our guests, but she only charged us for 4 extra guests. We did a Catholic ceremony; I was not impressed with the priest. . We did a sand ceremony also, which was beautiful. Ceremony lasted about 30 minutes.
Melia Garden Gazebo - A++
We chose to hold our wedding in the garden gazebo which is one of the reasons I chose Melia because I loved their Gazebo. We chose the garden location for the beauty of the gazebo and for the privacy. They decorated the gazebo with fresh flower arches which were really pretty. There is also a nice â€œaisleâ€ where you go over a little bridge to get to the gazebo. I highly recommend this site for weddings at the Melia.
Musical Trio B
We chose to hire the musical trio to play the processional music and they also played for about an hour, during champagne and photos. I barely noticed the musical trio! Everyone else seemed to love them They played Cannon in D for my bridesmaids and for me.
La Barcaza A+
I was nervous about this because they had switched owners before my wedding date, but everything was great. OMG! I donâ€™t think I will be able to do this justice in words. It was amazing and made our wedding the spectacular event that it was. La Barcaza is a small yacht that you can rent. We rented it for 3 hours for our reception. It has a top deck with lounge sofas and the lower deck they set up for dinner. They set up our dinner with 4 large square tables of 8. The way the tables were set up made for a very intimate feel. Dinner was served during sunset â€“ incredible. The food was delicious!! Grilled chicken, beef and veggies. When dinner was over, we cut our cake, then they moved the tables and we did our first dances and then PARTIED!! We brought our own music on an iPod, and they had a doc for their speakers, but to our surprise they had a DJ, which was great. I am telling you â€“ our reception was incredible, awesome, wonderful and amazing. It was so nice to do something a little bit different. They doc the boat at this â€œnatural swimming poolâ€ Thatâ€™s right, I went swimming on my wedding day! I took off my dress, handed it to my mom and hoped in the water. It was so much fun. When I got out, I towel dried off and changed dresses!
I went with the white roses and added 6 orchids it was $36 extra. My colors were orange and pink they wrapped the stems in pink and orange ribbon which looked nice. The bridesmaids had parasols. For my centerpieces on the La Barcaza I used Caribbean Celebrations which I was very happy with and received my compliments
The Cake A++
The cake was beautiful and YUMMY! And beautiful! They added flowers and it was 3 tiers. It was vanilla with Guava filling, the boat served it with fresh pineapple. I brought the cake topper and starfish from home.
We did not use the resort photographer. We hired Arnaud Brichet from HDC Photo â€“ Punta Cana Wedding Photographer. He was incredible!!!! He was so sweet and made us feel instantly at ease. Posing for all those photos is not the most natural thing in the world, but he made us feel so good. The pictures were great but they do not use Photoshop as they are some great pictures that were ruined by having an iron in the background of the videographer equipment. They do have a very quick turnaround with the photos which is great. The Video had songs my husband and I did not care for, but Arnaud said we could change it but it would take a long time, I wish he would have told us to pick 4 songs beforehand.
Hair and Make-up A
We did not use the Spa we hired Krystie Ann and she did myself and 4 Bridesmaids hair and Make-up in our room we ordered room service and champagne and were able to relax. It was great and she did a great job!