Hey Ladies!! Im getting married in April of this year at the grand palladium and wondering if you guys can help me. In regards to tables for a semi private dinner are you guys planning this with Carolina before hand through email or is it discussed when you are there? And then wedding music for walking down the aisle how are you guys doing it and if you are using your own iPod or cd who is making sure the songs are changed between the bridesmaids coming down the aisle and then the bride. Hope someone can help me!
Posted 21 January 2015 - 06:09 AM
@Meandhim I am trying to decide between the Tropical promise package and the Ocean Pearl package. We are probably going to have about 80-90 guest total so the renewal package probably wouldn't work with what we need. Im still confused what I should do about photos. Im trying to decide if I should stick to looking at vendors based in the DR or flying someone from the states. I think we are gonna have to cut cost by cutting out the cocktail hour to make it work. I also am opposed to having to pay hundreds of dollars for one hour of an open bar when all my guest can go to one of the bars on resort for free. Its crazy how much money they try to squeeze out of you!
Hope you ladies had a happy Thanksgiving!
@shevette925 your weddings are just a day apart from MandyMc....fun!!
I'm having the same amount of guests...roughly...so I was just wondering why the renewal package wouldn't work for you? Maybe I have missed something important? Should I be choosing a wedding package as well?? I know all the packages only include 8 people and then you have to pay 22 per person after that...or did you get different infomation...I'm always a little curious if they just make the prices up...
@MandyMc Welcome to the Forum!!! I had a few bad experience with Travel Agents through an online line agency..it wasn't until I went into a travel office next to my work that I finally found someone who was great. But again like Kerrierf I am in Canada and have family all over...my suggestion is find a travel agent you can talk face to face with.
@Kerrierf only a Few Short Months left for you...hows the planning going?
@Candace88 Welcome!! Sorry I'm not that far into my planning yet... but Mels84 just got married there on the 10th of January...maybe she can help or some of the other girls who are a little closer to their dates.
@Mels84 I hope you had a beautiful wedding day and a wonderful trip!!! How does it feel to be a MRS? I hope you come back soon to tell us all about it! I'm sure we are all dying to hear...well at least I am!!
I was previously organized and on the ball... then a bunch life happened...wedding date got delayed...Now I'm left feeling a little unorganized and nervous that I'm going to miss something important...I'm in the midst of redoing lists, budgets, inventory...I can't find half my things/ papers / emails...now with the CAD going down my budget is quickly shrinking ...I'm going a little crazy I think...
Hearing about everyone else's planning is helping me stay on track!! Remember things I forgot...and things I didn't even think of...I have so many questions right now I can even organize them!! lol
I am so GREATFUL this forum exists and that you girls are all going to the same resort...it helps so much to have people you can talk to that are all going to the exact same place and dealing with the exact same WC! I'm getting more & more excited now even though it's still months away!! Happy Wedding Year Everyone haha!
- Kerrierf likes this
Posted 21 January 2015 - 06:50 AM
We're back! And WOW!! What an amazing time!!! Ladies, you are working with one of the best! I cannot say enough positive things about Carolina and her team...... A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!!!! You seriously do not have anything to worry about and I know its hard sometimes waiting for her replies and it feels like there is so much that you should be doing or worrying about but this woman is on it! She is a very busy lady with weddings almost everyday and sometimes more than one. You will be treated very well!! Our tour company was Transat so I'm not sure what exactly was the hotel and what was the tour company but heres a bit of an outline of our wedding experience at the GP Palace.
When we got to Punta Cana, we were offered a private shuttle to the hotel. We opted to stay with the rest of our guests but I thought it was a nice touch. Then when we got to the hotel there was a separate check in area for our group. Made the whole process a lot faster I think. Some of our guest rooms (including ours) weren't ready immidately so they took my dress for me and hung it up in the office and told us where we could go grab a bite to eat. We went back to the desk and the room was ready. We had an amazing room. We were upgraded to a loft suite (RM 9114) and it was right by the beach and pool. Absolutely perfect! There was a few issues with a couple of the rooms. We had a few people booked together who were not couples and some were given one king size bed instead of 2 doubles or queens. They fixed it for us though. The evening that we arrived we were given a fruit plate and a bottle of rum in our room. Again a nice touch.
The next morning we had a meeting with Carolina to go over everything with the wedding. At that meeting I brought her all of my ceremony/reception stuff that I wanted put out. (Programs, paper fans, place cards, table numbers, seating chart etc.) We went over the itinerary for the wedding day and all the other little details so that our wedding would be exactly as we wanted it. She also told me about another wedding that was going to be taking place on the beach the day before our wedding so that we could go watch if we wanted. (The beach location is not a private ceremony location. They do put up a barrier to a certain point so people dont get too close but people will watch on the sidelines and you may have the odd speedo dude photo-bomb lol... My husband told me that just over my shoulder during the ceremony there was a topless chick that our groomsman were oggling through the ceremony. Just over his shoulder there were other guests that we didnt know that were crying though the whole ceremony lol)
So the day of the wedding, Carolina called me first thing in the morning to see if I wanted her to send someone to clean our room since she knew we were having photos done in the room. I declined since people would be in our room steady basically from 10am on. She asked if there was anything else I might need and told me my dress and grooms clothes (that they picked up for steaming the day before -$30 for the dress, $15 for hubbys clothes) would be delivered between 10-11 and that I didnt need to be in the room for this. I made all of our bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages but it would have been the same deal if I had flowers being delivered. Oh ya and because the wedding package included a bridal bouquet and I brought my own, Carolina used the flowers that would have been in my bouquet for centre pieces at dinner!
I went for breakfast at about 8:45 with my mom and dad. 2 of my bridesmaids went to the spa to get their hair done at 9. At about 9:15, the whole resort and surrounding area lost power!! At first I thought it was just the buffet that lost power but then I went back to my room and there was no power and ran into a couple other ppl that said they were out too. Not good for the nerves thats for sure. So I couldnt just wait around in my room, I went to the spa to be with my bridesmaids and my mom who were all waiting to get their hair done. When I got to the spa, Carolina was there with her radio. She was working on getting a GENERATOR brought to the spa so we could get our hair done for the wedding! This woman is amazing!!! I could not believe that they would do this. She would not leave the spa until it had power for us! So when I say you have absolutely nothing to worry about.... I'm so serious... YOU HAVE NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT! Just as the generator got there, they put it on the ground and before they could even fire it up, the resorts power came back on! So now we are about an hour and a half behind schedule but holy those girls in the spa are good! 5 of us got our hair done in probably an hour and a half or so... And they did a great job too!
So the guys and all the guest had to meet in the lobby of the palace for 1:30 and the train picked them up and brought them to the ceremony site. My bridesmaids, parents and I waited in my room until the officiant showed up. Carolina called my room to let me know she was there and that a bellboy was on his way to get us. We had our own golf cart drive us down to the ceremony. My husband had to bring our iPod with all of our music on it to the ceremony with him and gave it to the fella playing the music. @Candace88 I made a playlist for everything so it was clear (walk down the aisle, document signing, walk out, father daughter dance, first dance, etc). They have all the cords and everything to connect an iPod and they have someone to play it all for you as well. They also have a microphone for the ceremony so everyone can hear. The ceremony takes 10 mins!!! Not very long at all!! Short and sweet! Then theres champagne for after the ceremony. We had some guests that didnt drink alcohol so they had orange juice in champagne flutes for them. I told one of our groomsmen that he was in charge of coconuts for drinks/pics after the ceremony. There seems to always be a groundskeeper in the trees cutting down coconuts so they dont fall and kill someone lol... so you can go get some from them and ask them to cut the tops off so you can drink out of them. After the ceremony the bartender went to one of the bars and got pina coladas for the wedding party's coconuts and we went down the beach for pics!
When we returned to our room to freshen up a bit before the reception (our wedding day had to be the hottest day we had there with the least amound of breeze!!) our door had a just married banner across it, our room had rose petals all over the place, the bath was drawn with bubbles, and there was a bottle of champagne. Very nice touch.
At 6:30 we all met at the reception venue. We opted for the private dinner which was held at a lunch buffet that was between the pool and the beach in the Palace Section. Absolutely beautiful. Close to the rooms, no walls, grass roof, sea shell chandelier.... very tropical feel. We opted for the caesar salad (it is served with anchovies on top and either tuna or chicken right in the salad... it was good but my mom doesnt like fish so it wasnt her favourite), beef cordon bleu, potatoes and a veg (very good!) and tiramisu (again very good)! Everyone seemed to like the meal! I could barely eat anything for some reason... it was so good and i wanted to but i just had no appetite! After the dinner portion, we cut the cake and did our first dance, father daughter dance, mother son dance, wedding party.... Then the party started. Again they had someone there to play the music for us (I made a playlist for the dance too).
The next morning we had breakfast delivered to our room (we got to select the menu at our meeting with Carolina). They also gave us t-shirts and some sunscreen and moisturizer.
Everything is was so perfect! @Candace88 About dinner, I'm not sure exactly how the semi-private dinner works but about a month before the wedding, Carolina will email you with a spreadsheet where you get to pick all your options and she will make sure everything is right for you. Don't stress... I know its hard not to when its your wedding but really and truly there is no need to... everything will be perfect!
Ladies, if you have any questions please feel free to ask...
Posted 21 January 2015 - 11:35 AM
@Mels84 Yay!!!! Congratulations! I'm so glad that you had such a lovely day and it sounds like you guys had a wonderful time. It sounds like the staff really went above and beyond to take care of you. I'm sure your pictures were wonderful!!
@Meandhim, The reason why I didn't think the renewal package was going to work for us is because we would have had to add on too much to have the ceremony that I wanted and it would probably defeat the purpose in cost saving for me.
The reason why I have been so quiet lately is that I have actually decided to move our wedding offsite to the Jellyfish. Mainly because there were so much missing info about what I could expect for the dinner/reception portion in terms of food and decoration and the timing was a bit constricted. We would have had to do a private dinner and the beach bash and the costs just started piling up. It seemed that the Palladium catered more to smaller wedding parties and I wasn't confident about how it would work with my larger wedding. It got to the point where I was having stress dreams and lots of anxiety and was becoming a mini-bridezilla. So it made sense for me to make the change to know exactly what I would be getting and have a little more say in the decor.
I kinda feel bad because I totally abandoned ship but I will still be staying at the Palladium with allll of my guest and am really looking forward to it. So I'm so happy to hear such a positive post from @Mels84.
@MandyMc we are almost wedding twins! I'm sure we will run into eachother while we are there. Lol. I'm also US based and I'm using Luxe Destination Weddings, which is based in Toronto. So all of our communication has been through email or phone and I have been happy with them. I like having the buffer to communicate with vendors on my behalf and they have wedding planning services. Feel free to PM me if you have questions.
- Meandhim likes this
Posted 21 January 2015 - 12:00 PM
@shevette925 I was thinking of doing the same thing because I just didn't know what to expect from palladium for the reception...and I can't seem to get a set list of prices for add ons....but after hearing Mels84 review...Im a little more positive about it I do hear great things about the jellyfish too though!
@Mels84 I am so glad you had such an awesome time at your wedding and a great Wedding experience with the resort & Carolina!! That really puts me at ease! I have so many questions for you it's unbelievable! I will make a list and post soon (this weekend)...lots of reception questions..lol...Thanks so much for sharing!! Can't wait to see some pictures
- Kerrierf likes this
Posted 21 January 2015 - 05:53 PM
@Mels84 it sounds like it was the most beautiful day. I wish we could see pictures!
@Meandhim I've shamelessly asked them for all the prices for extra services - which ones are you looking for? I'd be happy to share!
@shevette925 I've heard a lot of things at the Jellyfish - it seems very popular.
Posted 24 January 2015 - 03:26 PM
@Mels84 I have a few Questions thought up...I'm sure I will have more ...but I am most curious about the reception. I have seen lots of pictures and information about the ceremony but hardly anything about the reception......I can't wait to see some of your reception pics!!
So here comes the questions.....
What was your wedding day Time line?
What wedding package did you choose?
Did you choose any extras?
Did you have to pay extra for the use of the music equipment and person to play your playlist for the private reception or was it included as part of the private reception?
Were there any decorations included for the private reception? or did you bring your own?
Posted 25 January 2015 - 06:36 AM
@Meandhim@Candace88 We chose the Pure Paradise Package since it was the cheapest option. I wasn't hugely concerned about decor or flowers or a bigger cake so we just went with the base package for $1930, for upto 20 ppl, additional people are $22. They do not charge this for the kids. It was nice and simple. The backdrop of being in the Caribbean was enough decoration for me! I brought a sign that they posted at the wedding site that said "choose a seat, not a side, we're all family once the knot is tied". My husband didn't have a lot of family at the wedding so this suited our situation. Plus I had simple programs, and paper fans for each chair. Carolina happily obliged to have all of that put out.
Wedding day timeline: Our wedding clothes were picked up the day before the wedding for steaming. (Dress $30, husbands clothes $15) They dropped them off the day of the wedding right to our room.
8am: Carolina called to see if I wanted our room cleaned since we were having pics done in there. I declined.
9am: 2 bridesmaids went to the spa to get their hair done (power went out and the schedule was a bit screwed after that but I'll tell you what the planned schedule was lol)
10am: my mom and MOH went to the spa to have their hair done... other 2 bridesmaids went back to my room to have makeup done (I have a friend who is a makeup artist). As others finished hair they went back to the room for makeup.
10:30am: my hair appt
1:30pm: All guest plus groomsman and groom meet in the Palace lobby for a train ride to wedding site.
2pm: Wedding time.... So for this I waited in my room with my bridesmaids and parents until Carolina phoned the room. She waits until the judge is actually there before she calls for you. She sent a bellboy in a golf cart right to our villa to pick us up. The wedding was a few mins late to start but no big deal. The wedding is honestly 10-15 mins.. Then as you walk out of the ceremony you are met by a bartender with champagne. They deliver it to all your guests. We had one guest who doesnt drink along with a few kids so they accommodated that by having orange juice to toast with. We had pics with all the guests and our families at this time too.
3:15pm: The train comes back to the wedding site to pick up the guests and bring them back to the Palace Lobby. We continued photos with the wedding party all over the resort and beach.
6:30pm: reception starts.
11:30pm: reception is over Basically they serve dinner and you decide the timeline after that. We had dinner, then speeches, then cake cutting, first dance, father daughter dance, mother son dance, wedding party dance.. then the party started.
The extras that we chose were:
Completely open bar for the whole reception. They originally told us it was $16/pp for this but that doesn't include dinner service. To have open bar at dinner as well its $24/pp. They use premium liquor for this bar. It was worth it for me since I dont drink beer and I didn't really want to have a wine hangover the next day lol. They also didn't charge this fee for the kids or our guest who doesnt drink which was nice.
Sound system: $320 for the sound system this was supposed to be just after dinner for the dance part but he ended up showing up before dinner started so he played our music all through dinner and didn't charge us extra. (I think to have the sound system through dinner as well was like $600 or something). They had an iPod hook up and a guy to play the music for us. I made it really easy for him by labeling the playlists. The sound system also comes with a mic for the speeches if you want. A few of our guests asked the guy playing the music to play some of his music at the end of the night so for the last half hour or so he played some more local music which was cool.
Steaming: as noted above $30 for my dress, 15 for his clothes.
Decorations for the private reception. I didn't bring any. Again I wasn't hugely concerned with decorations as the area is so beautiful on its own. I brought a seating chart, place cards and table numbers. I brought a guest book so they had a table for it as well. I brought the cake topper for the cake (the cake is plain white with some fondant stars around it) They provided the linens, and chair covers. I made my own bouquets so the bridal bouquet that was included in our package, Carolina arranged to have it broken apart into flower centre pieces. There were also candles for the tables. The tables were round and seated 8 people. I think I had the option for square tables as well. I don't have any photos back yet from the reception so I'll do my best to describe it. The restaurant we had our reception in was between the pool and the beach in the Palace section. It has a grass roof (that you can see from inside as well), no walls, the support posts are all dark brown, the chandeliers are a bunch of hanging sea shells (really beautiful) and they also have nice big ceiling fans. I really liked it. It was very tropical and very classy. I wouldn't have changed a thing. At first we wanted to do dinner on the beach with the beach bash afterward... I'm so glad we didn't spend the money on that. This was perfect and the breeze from the ocean gets quite cool at night so it might have been a bit chilly. We had a bit of a breeze where we were but it wasnt steady like it would have been on the beach.
I'll post some reception pics when I get some from my photographer but in the mean time I have a couple pics from the ceremony and pics from around the resort... There are so many places to have gorgeous photos!! The one of us lounging on the bed is by the adult only pool thats on the Palace Section.
- calgarybride2015 likes this
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