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Elsa's & Arthur's Wedding @ Rprm 2014.12.08

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#1 Icis

Icis
  • Jr. Member
  • 374 posts
  • Wedding Date:December 8, 2014
  • Wedding Location:Riu Palace Riviera Maya
  • LocationVancouver, BC

Posted 08 April 2014 - 02:46 PM

"Give me a minute, I'm good. Give me an hour, I'm great. Give me six months, I'm unbeatable." - Col. John 'Hannibal' Smith (A-Team 2010)
 
A-Team is one of my favourite movies. The movie resonates closely with my love for planning things and when an plan comes together. I wouldn't say I'm unbeatable, but I can say I'm relentless. I don't expect anyone will read this thread, rather it serves as my "memoir".
 
My wedding is going to happen exactly 8 months from now so I think it is about time that I start talking about it.
 
Concept: The Wedding
Ok, background: My fiance and I were both born in Hong Kong and immigrated to Vancouver, Canada when we were around 9. We went to summer camp together ( although we can't remember each other, our mutual friend swear we were both in the camp) that year. We went to the same high school and became a couple by Grade 12.
 
Marriage in my opinion is nothing more than a legal/religious documentation. Couples can get married and divorce faster than a meal (Britney Spears anyone?). What is more important should be how a couple can have a lasting and loving relationship for years onward. Anyways, I am not the one seeking out a wedding since a) Marriage is over-rated (see above) and it is waaaay too expensive for me and I rather put the money in travelling or in my home than blow it all in one day. People say to me, "Weddings doesn't have to be expensive." To which I say, yes, it doesn't have to be expensive if you have it in a park and invite close friends and family and then cook a home meal. However, this goes back to a) and I don't see a point of why we need further announcement to my close friends and family when we have been together for the PAST 10 YEARS (now 14). Then there are people who tells me that they get a lot of gifts from family and friends so their weddings weren't that expensive. Well, first of all, neither of us have a large family so we don't expect a large return. Second, planning a wedding with an expectation of a return is a terrible way to celebrate love, and even worse to budget. 
 
All this changed when the love of my life, Arthur, really, really wants a wedding. I tried to reason with him ("Let's just take some wedding pictures and go for honeymoon!"). We debated, debated, and then debated some more. I finally cave and we reached a decision to have a destination wedding as long as we can combine travel and wedding at the same time I'm happy; and as long as Arthur's parents can make it to the wedding then Arthur is happy. We (more like I) started to gather information about where to have our wedding.
 
The Vision: The Destination
Arthur and I have never been to Mexico before. We badly wanted to visit the Carribean side of Mexico so we started looking at Cancun and Riviera Maya. We leaned towards Riviera Maya since we heard that Cancun is a party central and very busy. Riviera Maya is busy, but not as crazy as Cancun. So, where in Riviera Maya? We started walking in and talking to different travel agents. Things that we found out and started to consider:
1) Most (if not all) international flights arrive and depart at the Cancun airport. So the further south from Cancun, the longer the shuttle to the resort.
2) We want nightlife and activities nearby.
3) The resort's beach cannot be rocky.
4) We wanted direct flights for the group because we don't want the hassle of delayed flights.
5) The cheapest way to travel from Vancouver to Mexico's east coast is via package deals (try separating them and it will cost you an arm and leg). There are only 3 airlines that travel directly to Riviera Maya: Sunwing, Westjet and Air Transat.
6) We want a resort that we can stay in one and play in many.
7) Below $1,700 after all taxes and fees per person. We don't think anyone will be able to afford it past that amount.
8) Good reviews from BestDestinationWedding, Expedia, TripAdvisor, Oyster, etc.
Let me tell ya, #7 is pretty hard to achieve especially when you combine all 8 criteria and we are travelling from Vancouver!
 
I started getting worried since brides on the BestDestinationWedding website (most of the brides are from US) are reserving their wedding 1.5 to 2 years ahead! How do they do it when airlines don't have their tickets out yet?? Well, US brides can book the ceremony and reception prior to booking the flights. Further-worse, Vancouver brides (as opposed to Toronto) brides have even less airline options that are much pricier! 
Getting pricing from travel agencies 1.5 to 2 years ahead are like pulling teeth! Makes it so hard to plan when and where to go! One agent told us to be patient and calm down and she will get us the pricing when she can.
 
The Decision: Riu Palace Riviera Maya
One of the independent travel agents suggested June or July or October or November, 2014 because those months were considered lower seasons. We asked the agent to provide us quotes for resorts around that time of the year. The prices were atronomical and it seemed like our wedding plans won't fly (pun intended) at all. Other travel agents tell us they can't get pricing for us until 11 months prior to the travel date so they can't give us quotes for November, 2014. I'm not super smart, but what I have is that I'm relentless. Time to put matters in my own hands.
Once we narrow down to 5 different resorts that are within our criteria, I emailed Sunwing for October or November. We know that Westjet is nice but cost more and AirTransat asks you to talk to their rather useless affiliated travel agents, so we directed most of our attention to Sunwing.
(Note 1: We - yes, we plan together - I am a firm believer that the man should be involved and as much as possible with everything in our relationship. A wedding is a union of TWO PEOPLE, not a fairy tale that one person insists on the other.
Note 2: Sunwing was the only airline out of the 3 that has package deals for the Riu chain)
We started emailing travel agents and Sunwing in the spring of 2013. You may think that's like two years to plan for a wedding, but like anything in life, planning MAKES THINGS RUN MORE SMOOTHLY. I love how people call for appointments last minute and thinks that the store will have a time for them either after work hours or during the weekends. We kept in touch with Sunwing and around fall, 2013 they said they are having a promotion on Riu Palace Riviera Maya and gave us a quote. We went back on our criteria list:
1) How far from Cancun? Not bad, 45 mins.
2) Nightlife and activities nearby? Playa del Carmen is 5 mins taxi ride away. Cozumel is a ferry ride away.
3) The resort's beach? No rocks
4) Direct flights? According to Sunwing, yes.
6) A resort that we can stay in one and play in many? Yes, 5 other resorts nearby.
7) Below $1,700 after all taxes and fees per person? Yes.
8) Good reviews from BestDestinationWedding, Expedia, TripAdvisor, Oyster, etc? Not the best, but pretty darn good for the price.
The other contender that we were looking at was Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe. That resort was looks prettier, but it costs more (It's like $400 per person more!), has a rocky beach, and there's not as many things to do around that area. At the end, we decided for the sake of our and other guests' wallet, we went with Riu Palace Riviera Maya (RPRM). We didn't go with Riu Palace Mexico (RPM) nearby because they recently renovated and has that hot purple and pink, with silver and black color scheme and we just don't think it will look pretty in our pictures. RPRM has one more bar and has that colonial feel to the decor which we hope we can capture in our pictures.
 
The Planning: I Love It When a Plan Comes Together!
I have to give tremendous amount of credit to the brides that contributed on the BestDestinationWedding.com's forum to make this wedding a reality. I don't think my wedding will be as awesome as I can make it without other brides' contribution.
 
Color scheme: This was a toughie. I don't like the cliched starfishes, seashells, aqua, hot pink or orange colors that I have seen in other destination weddings. Maybe it is because it is too girly and too fairytale-like? Anyways, I literally searched for pictures day in and day out of other options that catches my eye. It took me months before I finally narrow down something that matched my criteria.
 
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Invitation:  We wanted to make the invitation as small and cheap as possible because we find most Chinese people do not read invitation cards. We decided to have a plane ticket per guest as our invitation for the destination wedding and included most of the pricing and details on our website to reduce waste. We wanted to make the airline ticket as authentic as possible so we made our own airlines. We used black and white tickets because it resembles a real plane ticket and it is also one of our wedding colors. I downloaded the template from the forum, but made my own on Publisher. Why? Because Powerpoint is meant for making presentations and Publisher is meant for publishing documents! Our printer was not happy these days so we thought we may have to bite the bullet and go to a print shop to do this. Fortunately, our building manager has a print shop and he was super nice enough to print and cut our invites for free.

Attached File  IMG_4436screened.jpg   47.92KB   21 downloads

Attached File  IMG_4438screened.jpg   53.37KB   21 downloads

 

Website: We made our website and video at the same time as our invitation. Other married couple that we knew had other people make their wedding websites for them or pay for a service online to make it. I don't know anyone that can help me make one and I don't want to pay so I researched extensively to see if there's a WYSIWYG website maker. After some research I found that Wix should do the trick for a free and easy to make website. I conceptualize how I wanted the website to look like with Arthur and tell him to run along with the project. Every now and then I review how the website is doing, give him a few more pointers and tell him to run along again. At the end, he did a good job. As usual, I still have to spend time on editing the wording though.

 

If you want to see the video, you can check it out here.

 

Video: I had a concept of having some sort of intro to my website to make it have more pizzazz. Initially I was thinking of making a video with the whole song, but we don't think anyone really wants to watch it and we don't want to bore them so we decided to make just a 1 min clip. Filming took about 3 hours because we went back home to eat and watch some TV (so the filming was about 1 hour max). The dancing was just something I whipped up, but had to be super simple for Arthur to follow. I guess people really liked it because last time I checked there were 300 views. WHICH MEANS THEY SEE OUR WEBSITE, BUT JUST DIDN'T BOTHER TO READ THE DETAILS OR USE THE RSVP! See? What do I tell ya? Don't waste money on things that nobody cares about. They ended up emailing or calling you anyways.

 

 

That was the end of the beginning of our wedding planning. I'm almost done with our passport. Will post later.

 

XOXO,

 

Elsa



#2 Icis

Icis
  • Jr. Member
  • 374 posts
  • Wedding Date:December 8, 2014
  • Wedding Location:Riu Palace Riviera Maya
  • LocationVancouver, BC

Posted 08 April 2014 - 04:26 PM

The Love and Hate Relationship of Riu Palace Riviera Maya

 

The hotel is so pretty from pictures and the beach is beautiful! The problem is, wedding planning with Riu Palace Riviera Maya is not easy because information is not easily accessible!

A lot of brides keep asking the same questions and I thought it would work better if I just post a whole bunch of things here and have people refer to this post. I'm hoping I can save some brides' hair from falling off  :rolleyes: 

 

Packages:

Riu offers 4 wedding packages (USD pricing is as of 2014):

1)      Free package (if you have 5 or more rooms that are staying in more than 3 nights) (only available for RP Rivera Maya, RP Peninsula, RP Pacifico, R Santa Fe, R Emerald Bay): It is free for cake, sparkling wine and semi-private dinner of up to 10 guests. Officiant/Judge/Minister costs $735 extra.

2)      Classic package: $995. Includes an officiant, but does not include any guests. $25/guest.

3)      Royal package: $1,775. Includes an officiant and 20 guests, room upgrade, etc. $25/ extra guest.

4)      Caprice package: $2,575. Includes an officiant and 40 guests, room upgrade, mani, pedi, hair for the bride, couple massage, etc. $25/ extra guest.

Extra Costs:

Beach ceremony is $150 extra.

See attached for other services.

FAQ from Riu Palace Riviera Maya

Is there any requirement to have a wedding at a RIU Hotel & Resort?

In order to have a wedding at any of our RIU Hotel & Resorts, 80% of the total amount of the wedding guests must  stay at the hotel where the ceremony is  going to take place.

What is the difference between Legal ( Civil ) and Religious Ceremonies?

The legal ceremony is performed by a Judge ( JP ) in Spanish and translated into English. This ceremony is legally recognized, the new couple will receive a copy of the marriage licence and the original will be sent within 8 to 10 months to your home.   (please note that the Mexican Government can take longer to send these documents) When you recieve these documents you should translate them into English and go to your city Hall to legalized the marriage.

For legal ceremonies the bride and groom along with 4 witnesses need to be at the destination 3 full business days prior to the wedding. Please note that the arrival day does not count as a full day, (the hotel can provide witnesses if needed).

The religious ceremony is performed by a non-denominational Christian Father  (please note that Catholic weddings cannot be performed outside of a Church) The wedding will be performed in English. This ceremony is not legally recognized and you do not need any documentation (not even witnesses), the Bride and Groom will receive a symbolic marriage certificate. The couple should be at their destination at least 2 full business days prior to the wedding. Please notice that the arrival day does not count as a full day. The 3rd day will be the wedding.

Can we bring our own Minister?

Yes, you may bring your own Minister to perform your ceremony. However, please be advised that your wedding is not going to be legally recognized and your Minister will not be able to provide you a marriage certificate. On the other side we cannot offer you a discount if you decide to bring your own Minister.

The Sales Wedding Department needs to have the confirmation of the clients and authorization from the On-Site Wedding Coordinator in order to proceed with this special request.

Are there different wedding locations?

The wedding ceremony has to be performed in the hotel that you are staying. The locations are as follows:

RIU Yucatan, Tequila and Playacar: beach and garden

RIU Palace Mexico: beach, gazebo and chapel(it is very small, max 25 persons)

Riu Palace Riviera Maya: Gazebo with ocean view, kiosk and beach.

Please be advised that the weddings are more private in the garden areas, when the wedding is performed on the beach it will attracts other guests on the beach who are sunbathing. The beach wedding spots are on the sand, not in the water.

How many weddings are done per day?

Depending on the size of the wedding party, we only perform one or two weddings per hotel per day. The weddings are performed only from Monday to Saturday.

What is the procedure to arrange the wedding details?

After you receive your confirmation via website or sales wedding department, they will pass the information to the on-site wedding co-ordinators.

Your wedding co-ordinator will contact you first, after that, the weddings on-site coordinator will start to make all the arrangements two months before the wedding. One month before you will be given a date, time and location for your meeting with the wedding co-ordinator.

By email you will pick your restaurant of choice for dinner, the wedding spot and the cake flavour. If you have a large wedding party there will be more things to arrange via email, please be aware that groups of more than 27 people dinner will be at the 2nd sittings.The on-site wedding co-ordinators are always glad to help you, just keep in mind that your wedding co-ordinator cannot book providers or restaurants more than one month in advance of your wedding day.

The meetings are normally the day after your arrival, if it is not a business day it will  probably fall on a Monday. All the meetings are in the morning because the wedding co-ordinators are doing weddings in the afternoon.

What is the meeting for?

It is very important that you are punctual to your meeting.

With legal ceremonies you need to bring with you, your 4 witnesses, passports, tourist cards and your documentation. If the witnesses do not arrive with you the day of your interview, the hotel will provide them. For the religious ceremony you just need to show up.

At the meeting you will have the opportunity to see our photographers work, so you can pick the photo package that bests suits you, a catalogue of bouquets and flower arrangements are also shown for you to choose your dream bouquet and extra flower decorations.

Your wedding co-ordinator will give you a wedding itinerary so you know what is going on during one of the most important days of your life. In the interview feel free to ask your wedding co-ordinator all of your questions and doubts that you may have. This is your chance to clarify everything. A wedding co-ordinator is going to be in your ceremony and will book the restaurant of your choice.

How long does the ceremony take?

The wedding ceremony will last approx 20 or 30 minutes.

Which hotel will the wedding be at and is there a charge for the reception dinner?

In order to perform the wedding at a Riu Hotel, 80% of the guests must be staying in the same hotel the wedding is going to be at. For example if the wedding is going to be at Riu Yucatán, then 80% of your guests need to stay at Riu Yucatán, the other 20% can stay in other Hotels and assist with paying the following wedding fees:

If you are having the wedding at the Riu Palace Mexico or Riu Palace Rivieria Maya, guests staying at other Riu Hotels have to pay 45usd extra per person for the reception dinner.

If clients are staying at another hotel chain the cost for the reception dinner is 65usd per person for Riu Palace Hotels and 45 per person for the other Riu properties.

There is no extra charge for the reception dinner if all guests are staying at  the same Riu Hotel.

Your wedding dinner will be in the Hotel that the 80% of your wedding party are staying. Your wedding co-ordinator will send you via email the options that you have, and of course will advice you of your best option according to your group characteristics.

Is there a rehearsal?

All the details are discussed during the interview. Everything is very well organized so you will not need a rehearsal.

The rehearsal dinners are arranged upon arrival, as a group dinner at the main restaurant of the Hotel, it will be buffet service, directly with the Hotel Maitre.

Can I have a private reception dinner?

All the reception dinners are semi private. The reception dinner can be private if the group is at least  50 confirmed guests (only at the Riu Palace Mexico or Riu Palace Riviera Maya 2nd sitting 8:30 pm or 9pm).

Be advised that we do not have restaurants to rent for a private dinner.

It depends on the Hotels availability.

Be advised that groups larger than 27 people dinner will be at the 2nd sittings

What kind of room will I be upgraded to?

The room upgrade is to the next  level of booked room (PKT Royal and Caprice), but the upgrade is subject to availability and we cannot guarantee. You can arrange it upon arrival directly with the front desk of your hotel.

What about pictures?

We have different photo packages, please notice that the prices are subject to change:

 

All the pictures are taken digitally with high resolution (6 Mega Pixel).

The size of the printed pictures is 6 x 8 inches (15 x 21 cm) in color or in B&W and includes a basic album.

The minimum quantity of pictures in a package is 24 pictures.

 

PACKAGES

 

1              24 pictures                                                                                                                          $ 280.00 us

2              24 pictures with negatives on a CD                                                                           $ 400.00 us

 

3              36 pictures                                                                                                                          $ 360.00 us

4              36 pictures with negatives on a CD                                                                           $ 500.00 us

 

5              50 pictures                                                                                                                          $ 400.00 us

6              50 pictures with negatives on a CD                                                                           $ 600.00 us

 

7              CD with 80 JPG files (no prints)                                                                                  $ 700.00 us

 

8              DVD slideshow  with 120 photosof JPG

                files with menus and music,

CD with 120 photos, 1 leather album and

                50 (20 x 25) printed pictures                                                                                        $ 1200.00 us

 

9              DVD slideshow  with 170 photos of JPG

                files with menus and music,

CD with 170 photos, 1 leather album and

                50 (20 x 25) printed pictures                                                                                        $ 1500.00 us

               

Packages number 8 and 9 includes the photographer one hour before, during and  after ceremony and one hour for dinner

 

 EXTRA PHOTOS

Price per picture over the original package:

6 x 8                                                                                                                                       $ 15.00 usd

8 x 10                                                                                                                                     $ 20.00 usd

Leather album 31 x 35 cm                                                                                                             $ 90.00 usd

Additional photo session an hour before and after the ceremony                             $ 100.00 usd

from package 1 to 7

 

48 hr delivery or 5-7 days shipping address (UPS or FEDex) with no charge.

Photo Packages will be delivery to the photo shop located at the RIU Yucatan

Visa and Master Card accepted

 

For the largest quantity of pictures, please contact your wedding photographer for the pictures required

 

VIDEO SERVICE

 

Package # 1

           1 hour of continuous  recording in mini DV it covers with wireless microphones during ceremony             

           Beginning of recording 15 minutes before the ceremony

           Ceremony and Romantic scenes at the end of the recording

           Delivery (1) DVD of 15 minutes published in NTSC ó the Pal with music and menus

                Price $ 450.00 us

 

Package # 2

           2 hours of continuous  recording in miniDV it covers with wireless microphones during ceremony            

           Beginning in the brides room while she gets ready for the ceremony

           Ceremony and Romantic scenes at the  end of the recording

           Delivery (2) DVD of 25 minutes published in NTSC ó the Pal with music and menus

Price $ 750.00 us

 

Package # 3

           4 hours of  recording in miniDV it covers with wireless microphones during ceremony    

           Beginning in the brides room while she gets ready for the ceremony

           Ceremony and Romantic scenes

           During  reception: dinner time, speeches, cake cutting, etc, at the end of the recording

           Delivery (3) DVD of 45 minutes published in NTSC ó the Pal with music and menus

Price $ 950.00 us

 

Professional system recording HDV Sony (3 ccd 1/3) published in final cut Pro End Pro Mac Platform

Any special request , please consult I previously with the wedding coordinator

If you want to play back Hi-Definition quality images recorded with 1080i format (1080/60i) based on HDV Standard, your TV should be compatible with HD (1080/60i) input.

 

NTSC or PAL

NTSC System Countries or areas: Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa-Rica, Ecuador, Japan, Korea (Rep.), Mexico, Panama, Peru, Phillipines, Puerto-Rico, Taiwan, U.S.A., Venezuela, etc

15 working  days shipping address ( FEDex) with not extra  charge, Cash  VISA and Master Card accepted

 

* Deliveries before the 15 working days have a 20% of extra position

For any special requests, please contact the photographer and videographer directly.

 

Is there a Spa or Beauty salon, can I make reservations in advanced?

We have three Spas, one at the Riu Palace Mexico, one at the Riu Yucatan and one at the Riu Palace Riviera Maya.

For service information or to make advance reservations you can contact Paula Casas at paula.casas@renovaspa.com or info.mexico@renovaspa.com. Visit the spa website at www.renovaspa.com.

What about external providers?

Riu Hotels and Resorts have a policy to not allow external providers (without contract with RIU) such us local photographers, florists, musicians or local ministers.  If you require something really special please ask to your wedding co-ordinator, she will be more than glad to find it for you.

Who I will be dealing with, who is my wedding co-ordinator?

You will be in contact with the website department to book the wedding. Once you have a wedding contract you can contact your onsite wedding co-ordinator to finalize the wedding details. We are a team and are always be  glad to fulfil  your requests.

Could I send my wedding dress to be steamed?

Yes, please contact the Public Relation at your Hotel upon arrival, it needs to be 48 hours before of your wedding day, She/he will help you to arrange it, it has an extra cost depnding on the dress size and style.

 

In case of rain:

In case of weather inconveniences, we can move the wedding spot to our beautiful Chapel in Riu Palace México. More than 25 people will be  at the  terrace in the main restaurant at your hotel. We will let you know two hours before your wedding. We do not change the time or day of your ceremony because of the rain, everything will be like it was planned . If you have extra decorations, we will use it at your wedding dinner. Riu Hotels and Resorts are not responsible for delaying or cancellations due to adverse weather conditions.

 

What about the room upgrade and late check out?

Please remember that the room upgrades and late check out are according to the hotels availability and is therefore not possible to guarantee in advance. Please check availability directly with the public relations manager, upon arrival you may ask for them at the front desk

Attached Files



#3 Icis

Icis
  • Jr. Member
  • 374 posts
  • Wedding Date:December 8, 2014
  • Wedding Location:Riu Palace Riviera Maya
  • LocationVancouver, BC

Posted 12 April 2014 - 11:16 AM

Our Wedding: Riu Palace Riviera Maya vs. Off-site

 

I put a lot of time to determine whether to have my wedding off-site vs. having it at Riu.

 

The Pros of having it at Riu:

- Cheaper: Drinks are already included. Food is mostly included.

- Guests can go back to their hotel rooms at their own convenience.

- No need to worry about herding people to off-site location.

- Wedding coordinator is included in the wedding package.

- Reviews are good for weddings at the resort

 

The Pros of having off-site:

- No outside vendor fee

- I can have my reception at the time I want (Riu limited the time you can have the reception)

- Some sites are much prettier

- Food may be tastier

- Large space for dance floor

 

Since I'm living in Vancouver Canada. I can't really do site visits that some brides recommend. I'm always watching my budget because I have a mortgage to feed and I REFUSE to go on debt for my wedding. So, yes, I'm very money conscious.

 

Off-sites:

 

I have emailed Blue Parrot, Indigo Beach, Wicky's, and Kool Beach club. I have only heard back from Indigo Beach.

 

When you choose Indigo Beach Club as your wedding venue the details surrounding your occasion are handled to perfection by our experience staff. From Cuisine to music and entire coordination, we offer a variety of options and can promise the end results will be amazing. As beach club we will offer the space for the ceremony and catering service, attached you will find our Bites and Hour D`eouvres options, plated and buffet menus and open bar options. We are always open to working with you to create a menu that meets your needs and specifications. Please note that the prices do not include Mexican tax 16% and the 18% of service or gratuity charge. These fees will be added to your final bill.

We can accommodate up to 300 guest for cocktail and 200 guest for banquet seating, the cover area hold 70 guest. We provide furniture without extra charge for 70 guest, tables, chairs ,some candleholders for centerpieces and sand colour napkins, also a wooden dance floor.

There is a 200 usd fee from the government to perform a private ceremony on a public beach, plus we charge 200 usd to leave the space for the ceremony and reception clear from the morning.

For save the date we require 1,000 usd  down payment which will go towards the final bill. To have exclusivity of the place we require a min check of food and beverage of 4,000 usd. If not we can do it semiprivate, giving you the area in front of the restaurant all for you. We have available December, 5th,7th and 8th.

 

Off-site would be great for those who has a large group coming since the resort won't be able to accommodate the group easily. Since I have only 26-30 people, it doesn't make sense for us to rent a large venue for just a small group. The only bad part is that Riu will bump us to the late seating for the reception (which really sucks!). A good thing is us Chinese people don't like dancing all that much (talk to the ones from Hong Kong). It will be a waste to set up a dance floor. Therefore, I don't have to set up a DJ or anything.

At this time, I think we will stick with Riu's free package which doesn't include a minister (we are planning to get our own minister and then pay for a night (probably around $500 - still cheaper than the quoted $735 from Riu). Then pay for the extra guests above the 10 guests included in the package - $25/pp x $16 = $400...So all together = $900.

I have extra budget which I can use to set up an excursion for the group.

Attached Files


Edited by Icis, 12 April 2014 - 11:17 AM.


#4 Icis

Icis
  • Jr. Member
  • 374 posts
  • Wedding Date:December 8, 2014
  • Wedding Location:Riu Palace Riviera Maya
  • LocationVancouver, BC

Posted 12 April 2014 - 11:46 AM

Photographers

 

The largest expense I am willing to put in is the photographer. All we will have to remember our wedding day are the pictures that we will be able to cherish.

 

We LOVE Del Sol Photography's TTD sessions. Actually, that's one of the main reasons why we are having our wedding in Riviera Maya. We just love Sol's picture sooooo much. Every time I see her pictures I just stare at them because they are just so beautiful. We started talking to Ael with regards to pricing and availability during summer of 2013 (gotta do that budget!). So all goes well and we put in our Sunwing deposit for Dec 3 to Dec 10...and then we found out Sol and Matt usually takes December off for vacation!!! WHAT?!?! We were beyond depressed when heard the news. After expressing our devastation to Ael, Sol agreed to push back her vacation for us so that we can have our TTD session with her. TEARS...like big fat tears came down my face when I saw the email. I couldn't even type a reply because my hands are shaking like crazy.

 

We planned to have Deborah from Del Sol to take our wedding photos. Problem: Our ceremony is at 3pm, and because we have more than 25 guests our reception will be at 8:45pm. Del Sol's package includes only 4 hours we can't have any pictures of our reception...and an extra hour costs 1/4 of the wedding package. What do we do? What do we dooooo? Deborah's pictures are AMAZING. Although we budgeted A LOT for photography, we will likely be broke if we extended Deborah's hours.

 

We then entertained the option of having another photographer for our wedding who can provide us 7 to 8 hours of coverage. Every photographer has a style that you either like or don't like. We sorted through 15 other photographers and decided we like Gonzalo Nunez's photography style. Gonzalo's reviews were great and we like his approach to photography. Big plus is that his rates are super reasonable. He is quick to respond to emails (we even had a Skype session with him) and he is a very nice gentleman. 

 

So, at the end we decided to have Gonzalo cover our pre-wedding photoshoot and wedding photos, while Sol will cover our TTD session.



#5 ChristienEarnest

ChristienEarnest
  • Jr. Member
  • 183 posts

    Posted 18 April 2014 - 07:46 PM

    I too didnt want all the vibrant colors, so we are going with Black/White and a splash of Red.

    #6 FutureMrsSam

    FutureMrsSam
    • Jr. Member
    • 176 posts
    • Wedding Date:November 12, 2016

    Posted 22 April 2014 - 04:17 PM

    I can't see your downloads yet but everything sounds really nice :)



    #7 Icis

    Icis
    • Jr. Member
    • 374 posts
    • Wedding Date:December 8, 2014
    • Wedding Location:Riu Palace Riviera Maya
    • LocationVancouver, BC

    Posted 23 April 2014 - 02:35 AM

    I too didnt want all the vibrant colors, so we are going with Black/White and a splash of Red.

    My friends kept asking me why I don't pick a blue or green color because that's what they see from destination weddings. I think I just want it to be a bit different from the norm. Lol!  :P

     

    I can't see your downloads yet but everything sounds really nice :)

    Thanks Dido77! You are almost there! Just several more posts and all the attachments will magically show up  :lol:



    #8 ChristienEarnest

    ChristienEarnest
    • Jr. Member
    • 183 posts

      Posted 23 April 2014 - 06:01 AM

      My friends kept asking me why I don't pick a blue or green color because that's what they see from destination weddings. I think I just want it to be a bit different from the norm. Lol!  :P
       

      Thanks Dido77! You are almost there! Just several more posts and all the attachments will magically show up  :lol:


      I love your colors plus everything doesn't have to be what is viewed on the websites. We are not very colorful therefore our wedding will be a direct reflection of us. It's your day so tell them they can have what colors they want, on their day.

      #9 DWBride2015

      DWBride2015
      • Site Supporter
      • 128 posts
      • Wedding Date:April 24, 2015
      • Wedding Location:Royalton Resort- Jellyfish
      • LocationDR Punta Cana

      Posted 23 April 2014 - 12:34 PM

      lOve your planning thread


      Soon to be Mrs. Thiam

      #10 Icis

      Icis
      • Jr. Member
      • 374 posts
      • Wedding Date:December 8, 2014
      • Wedding Location:Riu Palace Riviera Maya
      • LocationVancouver, BC

      Posted 25 April 2014 - 12:41 AM

      @DWBride2015 Thank you so much!  :)







      Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: plan, riu palace riviera maya, canada, vancouver, winter, DIY, frugal, rprm, Playa Del Carmen

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