So here goes I finally got around to writing my wedding review. Its super long and I'm sorry it took forever to get together and posted but with all the holidays and life getting in the way after the wedding it was hard to find the time to sit down and put it all together. I promised I would do it before the end of the year so I just made it!!! I hope this helps any future LeBlanc or Palace bride or any BDW bride in general. I know how stressful planning my wedding was and have some advice take it one day at a time and everything will fall into place. The people who make it to your wedding are the one's who are meant to be there and as long as you and your fiance are there everyone else is just gravy. Don't stress the small stuff and enjoy every minute of your wedding day because it goes by super fast!! Happy New Year to all the past brides and future 2015 brides!!
Venue: Le Blanc Spa Resort; Cancun, Mexico
Wedding Date: 09/13/2014
Guests: 43 including bride and groom
Why did we choose to have a destination wedding?
We never really wanted a big at home wedding and we love LeBlanc Spa Resort so much from our past vacations there that we didn’t even think of any other place. We did know picking LeBlanc that we wouldn't get too many people to come because its pricey but we were firm in our decision. We were ok with a small guest list and as long as our close family and handful of friends were there then it was a go. We were surprised when our final count was 43 guests it doesn't sound like a lot but for a destination wedding it was enough to make it feel like a big wedding. A destination wedding just worked for us, small intimate with an awesome vacation all wrapped into one and we also celebrated our honeymoon. I would do it all over again.
Why we chose LeBlanc Spa Resort?
LeBlanc is the number one resort in Cancun for a reason the service, food, décor, beach and staff are just the best. My husband and I had visited LeBlanc 3 times prior to planning our wedding and knew that we wanted to share our love for the resort with all of our family and friends. We wanted our family and friends to be pampered and have an awesome time. The wedding planner there was also so easy to work with and I loved her from the very beginning. My family and friends are already talking about doing a reunion trip so all in all I’m very happy with our decision and so glad we chose to have our special day at LeBlanc Spa Resort. Almost forgot the most important thing it was also Adults Only which was great for relaxing and partying. J
Who was your off site planner?
Our off site planner was Elizabeth Yanez and she was good to work with and was definitely helpful throughout the wedding planning. The one negative was that I did have to ask her for specific information/catalogues and prices sometimes when I found out other brides had vendor catalogue I didn't know about. She was also organized and responded somewhat quickly although sometimes I did have to do follow up emails but for the most part she was on top of it. They do push their vendors a lot and I get it they want to keep it all in house but I could find my own vendors much cheaper and with better reviews and work I could actually see. When there were issues with my final bill before leaving for the wedding she fixed it promptly.
Who was your travel agent?
We used Wendy Hicks from Wright Travel Agency, she was amazing and I can't recommend her enough. She was very professional, always available, responded to emails fast, got us good rates and managed all payments with no problem. I reached out to her about 15 months before our wedding she gave us the best customer service and made booking the trip for everyone a breeze. She was very knowledgeable about our resort which was great. My guests also had the option to pay in installments which helped a lot of my guests pay for their trip throughout the year and they just had to be paid in full 90 days before the trip. I highly recommend going with a travel agent they will make your life much easier and handle everything for you.
Transfers were provided by our travel agent with our hotel package and I believe the company is called Amstar not a hundred percent sure. They were great, we arrived a day before all of our guests and were picked up by a nice SUV and had a private ride to the resort which worked out great since we had so much luggage with us. They also had a cute wedding sign so you couldn't miss them. For my guests they provided them with a tour bus so everyone fit in comfortably and more than enough room for all of their luggage. There were no complaints about the transfers.
This was a breeze. We were greeted with their signature coconut milk and a nice cold towel and then given warm shoulder heating pads to relax you. The butler took all of our luggage and brought them right up to our rooms. At check in we were also informed that since we reached the unlimited nights we were being upgraded to the governors suite for the whole 2 week stay we originally only had the governors room paid for 5 days (wedding weekend) then to save some money we were moving down to a honeymoon suite (for the honeymoon). Finding out we would be upgraded to the Governor’s Suite for the whole 2 weeks was awesome news a huge savings. I think the lady said that it would have cost us around $1,000 to upgrade and stay in the governors room if we had to pay for it. We loved the governors room it was huge and had a great view and two balconies it was also great not to have to pack right after the wedding and move everything to another room.
Check in for my guests was a little less relaxing but it was about 35 of them checking in at the same time so you can understand the commotion. It went as smooth as possible and everyone still got their flower and coconut milk but no heating pad. lol There were no issues with rooms or luggage and everyone was happy with how easy everything went. They had butlers ready and waiting to bring up all luggage and our guests were happy and ready to eat and grab a drink.
Governor’s Suite with Ocean front view
The room was awesome, two TVs with one in the bedroom area and one in the living area oh and a TV in the mirror in the bathroom. It also had a nice outside balcony with 2 lounge chairs and great views of the beach and ocean. The bathroom had a awesome Jacuzzi with great views and a nice 2 person shower. This room was great and big enough to fit me, 5 bridesmaids, 3 moms, 1 aunt, 3 hairdressers, 1 makeup artist, 2 videographers and 2 photographers the day of the wedding. It was way too many people for my sanity but we all wanted to get ready together. We also got the 2 best butlers they were always there to help you whenever you needed anything and would have our Jacuzzi ready nightly with aromatherapy and a nice bottle of champagne.
I didn't go too crazy with the welcome bags. I just bought canvas welcome bags and ironed on my own logo and filled up with customized sunglasses, a welcome letter/weekend itinerary and a hangover kit. The kit included Advil, bandages, hand sanitizer, tissues, gum, shout wipes, sun block and aloe. Also LeBlanc gives every room nice LeBlanc Beach bags so that was a nice gift for everyone. We were going to have the resort send all the bags to each room but we decided to just give them out at our Welcome Party. Our wedding planner had a nice table set up for us at the party and our butler brought them all up and laid them out on the table. We just handed them out there it worked out great.
What Pre-Wedding Events did you have?
We had 2 pre-wedding events and 2 after wedding events. (We qualified for unlimited events)
First Event - Welcome Party:
We had a welcome cocktail party on the day that everyone arrived and it was from 6-7pm and our guests then went to dinner on their own and then met back up for the hotel’s fire show at 9pm. The cocktail party was originally planned for outside near the fire show but since it called for rain that night they moved us inside upstairs near the terrace. The party had great signature drinks which they provided I think they were cucumber collins I’m not quite sure but they were yummy and my guests loved them. The food was also very good we had a mix of hot and cold appetizers and for music we just brought our Jambox and connected it to our ipad which had a playlist on it. The party was relaxed and fun and was a great way for everyone to meet everyone and to kick off the wedding weekend. This was also when I gave out all the welcome bags. We also arranged for a CunCrawl after the welcome party which was soooo much fun. I left open for anyone who wanted to join us and see some of Cancun’s nightlife and we had a group of like 25 adults. Everyone thought it was a great idea and we were able to try out 3 different bar/clubs at a reasonable price. We all danced the night away and would definitely recommend it to other brides who want to experience Cancun’s nightlife with their guests.
Second Event – Rehearsal/Rehearsal Dinner:
I definitely recommend doing a rehearsal it was nice to walk through what we were going to do the day of and visualize the timing. If you are having a bridal party this is a must so no one is confused even after doing a whole rehearsal we still had some guys not know what to do lol. So definitely push for the onsite rehearsal.
Our rehearsal dinner was the day after the welcome party and the day before the wedding and it was awesome and everyone raved about it. I had the dinner outside near the Gazebo and we served the Latin buffet with open bar from 7-10pm. We lucked out and it was a beautiful night with great breeze from the ocean, I had originally wanted to have the dinner on the beach but didn't really want to pay extra set up fee so having it by the terrace just right above the beach was the next best thing. There was so much food and such great drinks and I had beautiful flower centerpieces that Maya Floral provided that it kind of looked like it could have been the wedding reception. I also brought some more of my own décor like little papel picado banners for the centerpieces, a papel picado banner hung from the trees and my own lights with votives. We also again brought our jambox and just played our own ipad with our playlist and it worked out great. We had a great time at the dinner and the only thing that ended the night early was that it started to rain round 9:30 but it was not biggie by then we were all done eating and we just ran inside and moved the party to the 3rd floor bar where everyone danced and hung out and kept drinking.
2 Goodbye brunches:
We had a goodbye breakfast brunch for the Sunday after the wedding and for the Monday after the wedding as we had 2 groups leaving on both days. It was just tables reserved for us at one of the buffets from 8am to 10am so nothing really private. It was still nice to know we had enough space for everyone to sit and come as they please to say good bye.
Who was your on-site planner?
On-site: Paola Gomez
She was AMAZING! I first met Paola on our site visit a year before our wedding so I built up a great relationship with her. If my offsite planner wasn’t answering or giving me conflicting information I would just ask Paola and she would always answer me quickly or fix the problem. She was always there to communicate by email or phone and was very organized. When we arrived and had our first pre wedding meeting we went over every event and detail and she was on top of it. She was also at every event making sure everything went off without any problems. The day of the wedding she was there helping with décor and setting up the tables and never charged us anything extra. She was a dream to work with and definitely made the planning process easier at the end of our stay we did tip her $100 as a thank you we wished we could have given her more but it was already an expensive 2 weeks. lol
Who did your Hair and Makeup?
Styling Trio did my hair and makeup and 7 of my girls hair. I splurged and went with the trial and wedding makeup package. They did my trial on the night of the rehearsal dinner so I had my hair and makeup all done up for the night. I’m glad I did the trial because I had the chance to tell the makeup artist what I didn’t like and I could test out my hair with the Cancun weather. The day of wedding they arrived on time which was around 12 for our 4pm ceremony. Now I wish I would have told them to come earlier as this was not enough time to get me and all my girls done without rushing at the very end. Me and all my girls have a lot of hair and it did take longer to finish some hairdos than anticipated. I felt very rushed right before the ceremony and missed a lot of pictures I wanted to get with my bridesmaids. when it was time to put on the dress I think it was just me and my moh and mom and everyone else had to run and finish getting ready. So if you have a lot of people getting hair and makeup definitely add a lot of time so you can have more than enough time to relax and enjoy the moment. We ended up starting the 4:00 pm ceremony around 4:30 pm which then also pushed back cocktail hour and we started the reception a little late as well. As for the work of the styling trio it was great we all loved our hair and I really liked my makeup. It stayed on all night and really looked nice from beginning to end. I would recommend the styling trio to anyone, it was nice to have them come to my room and get ready there with all of my girls.
Where did you have your ceremony and what time?
Location: Gazebo overlooking the beach
Time: 4:00pm (actually started around 4:30 pm)
Ceremony type: Symbolic (we added religious lasso ceremony and brought our own music)
What Collection did you use?
Collection: Complimentary (with a lot of DIY touches and décor rentals)
For the ceremony the only thing I brought were lace cones filled with rose petals that were hung on every chair for my guests to toss when the ceremony was over. I also had fan programs set on everyone’s chair and rose petals going down the aisle . Other than those few things we didn’t do much décor here as the beach view and setting alone was enough. The complimentary package also included the white tiffany chairs, champagne toast and some orchid flowers which was a nice touch. As for our music we also used the complimentary sound system and just gave our wedding planner our ipad and had 3 songs picked out one for the bridal party, one for the bride and then one for the kiss and leaving the ceremony they played them all at the right time and it worked out perfectly.
Who was your minister?
I do not remember our ministers name but he was very nice and we were able to meet with him the day before the wedding and talk about what tone we wanted the ceremony to be and told him we wanted to incorporate the lasso ceremony. He had great suggestions and he knew exactly what to say the lasso ceremony was a nice way to incorporate both mothers and everyone loved it.
Where did you have your cocktail hour and what time?
Originally it was planned for upstairs front terrace by the half moon pool but it was then moved to the terrace outside the ballroom where our reception was supposed to take place. Honestly since everything was pushed back I didn’t go to my cocktail hour I was busy taking pictures on the beach. From what I hear everyone had a good time and enjoyed the food and signature drinks. It was also very humid and I think a lot of guests just preferred to be indoors and hung out inside before the reception started. At the cocktail hour the only décor we had were some small white rose centerpieces, a signature drink sign, personalized napkins and some lounge seating (which we had originally rented for our reception to be near the cigars so this was kind of a wasted rental).
What cocktail hour menu did you pick and how was it? Did you have a signature drink?
I can’t remember exactly what we picked for cocktail hour but it was 4 hot appetizers and 3 cold ones. Our signature drinks were strawberry margarita for me and an expresso martini for my husband. We didn’t any complaints about the food and definitely saw our guests enjoying the signature drinks so I would say it ws a success. (The cocktail hour was truly a last hour for us) lol.
Where did you have your reception and at what time?
We had our reception inside in their ballroom (originally booked the terrace but it looked like it would rain) my guests actually appreciated this change because it was really humid that night and the call for rain was too much of a risk. The reception started round 6:15 to 10:00pm and then we hung out on the terrace afterwards it actually never ended up raining so we just kept the party going without music and we had sparklers and the guys smoked cigars and used the lounge seating. Then we went to the bar upstairs and did karaoke and kept drinking there. it worked out great and no need to pay for adding more hours to the wedding.
What menu did you pick and how was it?
We had salad, lobster bisque, cherry port sorbet, either salmon or rib eye and trio chocolate nougat. Everyone raved about the food they said it was the best wedding food they and and they ate everything. I would have to agree the food was phenomenal and if I wasn’t wearing such a tight restricting dress I would have ate the whole thing. lol
What kind of cake did you pick and how was it?
We went with the one tier complimentary cake and it was vanilla with strawberry filling. It was plain on top with some lace detailing on the sides. We brought our own cake topper and cake knife/serving set. It was very cute and more than enough for all the guests. I also surprised my husband with a grooms cake and ordered a cake to look like his corrections officer uniform shirt. He was so surprised and all of his coworkers who came to the wedding were very impressed and loved it. It was vanilla cake with hazelnut cream filling. The cake was actually wrong it was supposed to be hazelnut cake with raspberry filling but the end it didn’t matter both cakes were very yummy and our guests enjoyed them. A quick tip we had so much cake left over definitely do not need too many tiers as it won’t go.
Did you hire a DJ/MC?
Yes, we hired DJ Discomovil and he was great and kept the party going. He had high energy and played most of the music we had pre picked. It was nice that he also acted as a n MC and we didn’t have to worry about making announcements. The only hiccups were the entrance bridal party names and the entrance songs. There was some miscommunication some of the names were said in the wrong order and he didn’t use he song we thought we had picked. so word of advice double and triple check these little details so you are both on the same page. Other than these things the rest of the party went without a hitch and everyone loved the music and was on the dance floor all night. Discomovil also provided us with a light up dance floor and it was great and added so much to the look of the room. Communicating with him before the wedding was also great he is on top of his emails and willing to work with you. He was also nice enough to help us get a guitar so my grandfather could serenade us and he also helped us by getting me sparklers much cheaper than what my hotel wanted for them. Payment was also very simple and we just did it through paypal before the wedding. As for hiring an outside vendor we got around the $800 vendor fee by paying for a room night which was like $450 so we saved some money that way. All in all he was still cheaper than either JSAV or PSAV and I would definitely recommend him.
Who was your photographer?
Our photographers were Melissa and Marina from Del Sol Photography and they were awesome to work with. They had so much energy and great vision that we just love all of our photos. They arrived on time and went right to work. We also added them one extra hour at the reception and just paid them there and they stayed to capture the party and dancing. Payment and booking was very simple and we paid half in advance via paypal and the rest the day of the wedding in cash. We really wanted to use them for our TTD session as well but we had to cut some money in the budget to we couldn’t do it maybe someday for our anniversary we can do a cenote shoot with them. Their work speaks for themselves and we were so happy to go with them and believe they were worth every penny. For both photographers we only had to pay day passes so that wasn’t too bad. I have a much more detailed review under the review tab.
Who was your videographer?
Our videographer was Carlos Gallardo and he was great to work with and we love our video. We are so happy that we added the video to our budget as it really is nice to sit back and relive the day in a video to catch things you missed. He has great video packages and is willing to work with you, always answered all my questions and communicated great. Payment was easy and done over paypal. As for the vendor fee we just paid the $400 to have him and his assistant there. His price plus fee was still cheaper than going with their onsite videographer so we were happy we went with him. Here is a highlight video of our wedding.
Here is the password gallardo to view it.
Did you have any other entertainment?
The other entertainment for the night was the photo booth trough LaCabina which was provided through the resort . It was great addition and everyone loved taking photos. We got to keep a copy of all the photos so it’s fun to look back at the silly ones. We also provided a table of cigars and our own sparklers for after the reception.
Who did you use for Décor/Flowers/Entertainment?
For wedding décor we used Latin Asia and they provided us with gold tiffany chairs for the reception, lounge chairs for the cocktail hour and a beautiful chandelier for our sweetheart table. They really helped make the room look beautiful and gave it that upgraded look I wanted. I also brought a lot of my own décor such as table numbers, picture frames, cake topper, candle holders, signage, maraca favors etc. The flowers were from Maya Floral and they were great to work with, they provided flowers for our rehearsal dinner which were just 5 small white rose centerpieces. They also provided flowers for the bridal party and flower centerpieces for the reception tables. The centerpieces were beautiful and really brought the décor together. The communication with Maya Floral was also very good and their prices were the best. We were really happy with their service and impressed with their beautiful flowers. We paid them through paypal so that was also convenient. They were willing to work within my budget and that was so helpful when trying to pull off your vision and still stay within budget. We avoided the vendor fee by going with small centerpieces that they just need to drop off and not set up. You will not go wrong with Maya Floral. We also did us the complimentary flowers from the resort I gave the boutonniere to my brother in law as he was escorting my grandma down the aisle and we used the white rose bouquet as my bridal bouquet toss.
Did you do a TTD shoot?
Yes, we went with Naal Wedding for our TTD shoot and she was great. We had our shoot a couple days after the wedding. We met up with Naal and her assistant in Playa Del Carmen and did a photo shoot at an old hotel that had a lot of colors and old architecture. Then we moved to the ocean for the second part of the shoot and did some cool shots on a paddle board. The paddle board was fun but not easy with a beaded dress on. I am happy with did these photos and love their bright colors and how they capture Mexico. Her rate was very reasonable and her work is great. If you want to add a TTD and want artistic photos but not spend too much reach out to her. She was also very easy to pay through paypal.
If you have them, use them! I was very happy to use mine for the spa, cabana with moet and excursions. It saved me a lot of money.
All of our guests also used their resort credits for the spa and cabanas. They all raved about the spa and how they got the best massages and treatments ever.
-Buy a handheld steamer for your dress and the bridal party attire.
-Buy a Wallybag for your dress and suits they really help with transporting your big day attire.
-Bring $1 bills for tips at the restaurants, bars and butlers/maids.
-RELAX! We enjoyed our entire week there and it flew by. Don’t stress over every little thing. It will fall into place. You will be so busy the day of your wedding; you won’t even notice is something is missing (unless it’s your husband or a family member).
Edited by NJBride2014, 31 December 2014 - 10:38 AM.