After 10 months of planning and looking forward to our trip, it has come and gone and was a fantastic party!!!!Here goes my review!
The resort is beautiful, though the grounds are small. However, for a wedding party it’s fantastic! We ran into each other everywhere and considering it goes up rather than down, it was so easy for us to run to and from another’s room. We were there Jan 15-22, 2014. The resort was booked out completely, so it was hard for ones in our group who did not get the right room/beds/did not like their room to switch around…so that got a touch complicated as they had to wait two days to do so. There were also 8 weddings the week we were there. SOOOOOOO Busy!
We arrived Wednesday night at 8:45pm….and I has emailed the day before to remind them as 40 of us arrived at once and we had kids and babies in tow. We were hoping for more staff at the check-in so we could all get to dinner (our 6 hour flight had no food and people were starving). However, check-in was brutally slow and people were absolutely dying waiting there with no food. Some even abandoned their luggage just to head over to the buffet. The buffet as it was late…had no proteins left…so not the best combo. Also, a whole section of our group was plunked on the second floor which is right near the entrance and had a ton of noisy all night long…and could not change rooms for two nights. We also had two men who had booked two double beds, and ended up with one king…they were not impressed.
We were greeted with champagne…but it was a touch late and part of our group had abandoned the line for the buffet at that point.
Dreams PA is a beautiful resort. It is small, which is why we chose it. The staff at this resort was amazing! They were attentive and were always around to serve you or ask if you needed anything. Rooms did have a touch of a problem. Several of the showers did not drain, and a few of our guests complained that their toilets plugged. Also, most of the rooms smelled quite moldy due to the moisture. BRING FEBREEZE, our one bottle was a lifesaver. Also, some rooms had tubs and others didn’t…it was kind of odd and they gave the showered rooms to our families with babies and tubs to others who would not use them.
The resort offers 24 hour room service, which we took advantage of a few times. Our food was usually delivered in 30-40 minutes and was good. The room service menu is small, but the items were yummy.
We stayed in an ocean view room (748) and had the honeymoon package, the day after the wedding they had a little banner on our door. There were flower petals all over the bed with towel art when we arrived. They had a bottle of wine and two apples for us as well. Every day they made some cute little animal or doll out of the towels. While the room is nice, it is very narrow and not too large (the day of the wedding with all the girls there trying to get ready it got really hectic and felt too small)…in hindsight I would’ve gotten a new room. But the view was awesome…no complaints there.
They weren’t very good about refilling the minibar, we left a note for certain things and never got them refilled…we had to go grab water from our concierge. Our lock on our door was also broken…on the wedding day…and it took them a while to get it dealt with.
Also, no water pressure in the showers!
the beach is SMALL. It is beautiful though with warm water and soft sand. Don't plan to take long walks, although I think if you really wanted you could walk down the beach of the other resorts. We were so busy with all the plans and the weather wasn’t that nice when we were there so I didn’t spend much time at the beach.
The pool was really nice for the little ones…I saw them in there every day; also the service at the pool was amazing. Super quick and the servers were always around. Every time we turned around there was a new round of shots or drinks.
the restaurants to choose from are:
Seaside Grill: by the main pool, easiest to go to. Food was good, pretty quick. Outside seating. Also open for lunch! With a different menu so that was awesome.
World Cafe: dinner here is not as good as the a la carte, so aside from day one we didn’t eat here. But pretty good stuff for breakfast!
Portofino: Italian; some serious lines to eat here! But the food is amazing! Steaks at all the restaurants were amazing, melts in your mouth. The tiramisu here is to die for as well.
El Patio: Mexican; we ate here for our rehearsal dinner. They put a bunch of tables together for us, amazing service and they do a little show with their Mayan coffee (coffee lit on fire). Really cool!
Oceana: Seafood; we froze to death! Also it was a cold night and we didn’t realize it was all outdoors. Also we went for our welcome dinner and had a group of 20 and 10….the table of 20 waited almost an hour to eat because they all had to be served at the same time…they do this cute little reveal with the dishes covered and all that. But because of it people were starving and cold. Opps.But the steaks were amazing and so was the cheesecake!
Gohan: Sushi; DO NOT EAT HERE….it was not good….and bugs were falling into our food.
Entertainment/Things to do: 7/10
We watched a few shows, their magic one was meh. Their fire show was really good, and their rock band/dancing one was okay. I would say overall their shows are not as good as the larger hotels.
Wedding Coordinator: 10/10
I worked with Jacki, she was great to work with, but was really busy so we never got the rehearsal that we asked for…but I ended up watching a wedding the day before and told my wedding party what to do. Jacki pretty much showed up when we needed her to, and the wedding dress, and flowers just appeared. Also, she took all of my decorations and had them up without me even telling her what I wanted.
She also set up a surprised bridal shower for me on request by my bridal party and it was beautiful!
Heads up, spa area is TINY! If you were hoping to get a big group in at one time….plan ahead. I had my trial done the second day I was there and the hair turned out fine…but the makeup. NOT IMPRESSED. But I am Asian, so I have features that I guess she did not know how to work with. Also, I had asked ahead of time if they have spray on foundation and was told yes…..She did not have that, nor know what that is. I also asked her to contour my face (she did not know what that is either). With my eyes, if makeup is too heavy or beyond the lids I look like I got punched in the face. Ha-ha. So I had shown up with pictures of a trial I had done previously, with step by step pictures. The makeup artist was not able to replicate. So, in the end I went back for the hair…and was fortunate enough to have amazingly talented friends who did my makeup. Thank goodness I brought all the makeup that I needed just in case! The hair and makeup trial costed me $110, and just the hair on the day of $60.
I didn't care too much about flowers so I only had my bouquet, a boutonniere for my hubby, which Jacki had said would be coral but turned out red. It also died really quickly…so not sure if the outliner was worth it. I had real touch bouquet and boutonnieres for the rest of the bridal party which looked good the whole night!
Photography: 11/10 (can I say that they are any more amazing?)
We had an outside photographer named Jhankarlo and his assistant Diana, they were amazing!!!! I would highly recommend them to any bride!!!! Very reasonably priced and they even spent extra time with us just the get the right shots. I will be doing a review just for them!! They have also worked in Dreams PA before and knows all the right places on the corals and throughout the resort to get the best shots with the best lighting. We also had a First Look shoot and they coordinated where to meet.
We also did our trash the dress shoot with them as well and had an amazing time. They are so easy going and just makes the shoot extremely fun and comfortable. HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!
Our ceremony was at 4pm in the wedding gazebo. It was fantastic as the sun was setting the light was shining from behind our guest, so we were washed in sunlight which made for fantastic photos and also our guests did not have to squint. I had no flowers for the gazebo, but I didn’t think I needed it. It has the white chiffon materials all over and I also brought pink and coral chair sashes and starfish aisle deocrations. We wrote our own vows, and opted out of anything religious. We also had our wedding party read a children’s book ‘I like you’ which was lovely. But aside from that the ceremony was really short, had I known this I might have added a sand ceremony. We rented the speakers! DO IT! Cause the waves were quite loud and hard to hear over it.
The ceremony was more than we could ask for! It was short, sweet, and very much tailored for us. Couldn’t have asked for more. The sound system to set up was around $120.
Brides! You have to walk over sand to get to the gazebo!!! Be aware if you are wearing extremely high heels and have no one to hold on to..I sank in the sand a bit so my dress looked a bit longer and made it harder to walk.
We booked out El Patio for $900 and had it from 7-10pm. The food was fantastic; we chose the Caribbean buffet and had the option to switch out some foods, which was great! Because we ended up choosing all things that we liked. Coconut fish, short ribs and potato and leek soup was our favorite! However, we were so busy during the reception that we didn’t get to eat much.
My only downside is that the tables are set up around the tree in El Patio, and therefore my parents sat in the wrong spot, and could not see us. I didn’t have table seating and we ended up all dancing at Desires Night Club and so we did no dancing at El Patio and did not need that much spacing between the tables…
El Patio is gorgeous, and I had brought tons of sea shells to be placed as centerpieces and Jacki had them scattered with candles all over. It was beautiful. I left all of the sea shells there with Jacki, in case any future brides with like sea shells all over as well!
Our wedding was more than we ever imagined! While Dreams PA may not be perfect for the older crowd, the intimacy of Desires Nightclub and the fact that the resort was small made it the perfect location for our wedding group to meet up and run into each other and to have our own small party every day and everywhere that we went. I don’t think we would go back to Dreams for a vacation (too many groups and too much partiers…like our group! Ha-ha) but for a wedding it was fantastic!
I have attached pictures and also, my wedding plan and several other documents from my planning process.
Edited by jrack, 01 February 2014 - 11:11 PM.