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Vancouverpetunia - Now Sapphire - April 7, 2016

2016 Brides Cancun Riviera Maya BDW Newbies

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#1 vancouverpetunia

vancouverpetunia
  • Member
  • 670 posts
  • Wedding Date:April 7, 2016
  • Wedding Location:Now Sapphire, Riviera Maya, Mexico
  • LocationVancouver, Canada

Posted 15 April 2015 - 04:29 PM

Like so many other brides before me, it would seem, I wasn’t going to do a planning thread. But I have seen how helpful they can be to others, as well as it’s a great way to solicit ideas for your own planning. Not to mention, I think it will help me stay on track. So here goes…

 

How We Met

We met at a destination wedding at Dreams Tulum in Nov 2010. I was there for my co-worker and he came as his buddy’s “plus one”. Jeff knew the wedding couple and a lot of the guests, but he wasn’t close enough to be invited. In a sense we were both outsiders, since I was a friend from work, and while I knew many of the bride’s friends, I was not close to any of them. It turned out that it didn’t matter - we made fast friends and had so much fun over the course of that week.

 

He followed me around like a puppy dog the entire week! (I hope he never reads this - he will kill me :rolleyes: ) Because I had not been to an all-inclusive before and I generally like more active vacations, plus the fact that I wasn’t super tight with the group, I had booked a couple of excursions on my own. Jeff’s friend “volunteered” him to come with me on one. Thank goodness he did. I was so hungover. I wouldn’t have made it back down the Coba pyramid without him!

 

Meeting in Mexico 2010

 

But I wasn’t interested. I really liked him. We got along so well and he made me laugh. But I wasn’t into him. I was recently out of a relationship that ended badly, so I’m sure that was part of it. Strangely, he’s quite shy by nature, but he was NOT shy with me. He made his intentions clear from the start, but I wasn’t going there.

 

Anyhow, fast forward a year. I finally emailed him to send him photos from the Coba excursion (he conveniently forgot his camera). I suggested drinks, thinking that since a year had past, maybe we could now be friends. And here we are almost 3.5 years later.

 

The Proposal

We had been talking about getting married. We had been talking about rings. I inherited a ring from my grandma that is really ugly (and not an antique or anything I want to keep for sentimental reasons), but has some diamonds and gold that I suggested he use to have a ring custom made. That was a little too intimidating for him, I guess. :wacko: He told me to go ring shopping with a girlfriend, which I did, but didn’t tell him about. One night, after many drinks, and him complaining about not knowing what to do about a custom ring, I tossed a business card at him with 3 model numbers printed on it. That was summer 2014.

 

We had a big trip planned to Spain and France in Sept 2014. I thought he might propose. But as the days passed in Barcelona, nothing. I was trying not to expect it, because I didn’t want to be disappointed. Then towards the end of our trip, the two of us alone in a ruined castle tower in the South of France, he whipped out the ring and proposed. I forgot to say “yes”. I said “thank you” instead, because I had this pretty “gift” he was giving me. He had to clarify. LOL. He had the ring in his wallet the whole time - walking around Barcelona, pickpocket central. I still can’t believe it.

 

Engaged in France! 2014

 

The Destination

We considered a local wedding (or somewhat local). I wanted something very casual - maybe a BBQ in a park? But public parks don’t allow booze! So now what? We thought about going to the Okanagan, which is like Canada’s Napa Valley for those who aren’t familiar with it. We’ve done an annual trip there 3 years running, and I grew up in the area, but no longer have any friends or family there. But it just wasn’t quite right.

 

We’d also been to the Riviera Maya twice since we originally met. It is our go-to place for a relaxing, easy getaway. Plus we met there, so it just seemed right. We’ve now been there a total of 4 times together, having just returned from another trip last week. And we both had so much fun at the wedding at Dreams Tulum. I hope ours is just as good!

 

Resorts

I started doing research on resorts in late November, I think. I also contacted a destination wedding travel agent in probably December, who further helped with the research. We considered Grand Princess (we’d previously been there on vacation), Grand Palladium, Ocean Coral & Turquesa, all 3 Azul properties (Beach, Sensatori & Fives), plus Now Jade and Now Sapphire. It was really tough finding the right combination of resort and wedding package, while trying to consider our guests and their needs as well. I have a huge spreadsheet with all the details in it for comparing resorts. Although it’s still early in the planning stages for me, I think choosing the resort was the toughest part of the whole process.

 

For various reasons we narrowed it down to Now Jade, Now Sapphire and Ocean Coral & Turquesa. In mid-January, we put down a deposit with the TA and she got quotes from those three for travel packages (air + hotel + transfers). OCT was a bit cheaper, but it’s not as highly rated either in stars or reviews as the Now properties. If it had been a lot cheaper, I would have considered it. It was tough to choose between the 2 Now properties, but Sapphire was a little bit cheaper, seemed to have a more “Mexican feel” to it, which I wanted, and I also have a colleague who was married there 2 years ago who had a great experience. We booked Now Sapphire at the end of Feb.

 

Guests

We invited 62 adults plus some kids. Of course, we knew some would not come. I was thinking we might end up around 40 - 50. At this point, I think it may be closer to 30 - 40, which I actually prefer. We currently have 33 people who have said they are coming (plus a few kids), as well as 12 who have said they are not. I don’t know about the other 17, but suspect not many will come. Of the 33, 11 have put down a deposit. Our booking deposit deadline is May 15.

 

Save the Date

We sent a simple email with links to our wedding web site (http://erinandjeff.weddingwoo.com/) and attachments including travel details. We have an RSVP form on our web site, which I built in Google Forms. I’m not planning to send paper STDs, but I think I will send paper invitations.

 

Obviously we have almost a year until our wedding, so plenty of time to plan and work on all those little touches. But I’m a planner and our wedding is my new obsession, so stay tuned for more updates soon, I’m sure!


Edited by vancouverpetunia, 15 April 2015 - 04:30 PM.

- Erin

 

My planning thread: http://www.bestdesti...2016/?p=1893268

 

My Now Sapphire review: http://www.bestdesti...riviera-cancun/


#2 Victoriabride

Victoriabride
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  • Wedding Date:June 18, 2015
  • LocationVictoria, BC

Posted 15 April 2015 - 04:54 PM

Yay another planning thread! I love reading these as it keeps me on track, but also makes me feel so behind on so many things! Cute story of how you and your Fiance met :) And so fitting that you are having a DW! I feel like you are really on top of things... either that or I am super behind! We just put our deposits down and we are getting married in Cabo on Feb. 1st. 2016 and I still have to send out my invitation. We are also expecting about 40 guests... I think that is a really good number :) I need to start a planning thread too to keep me on track! Thanks for sharing your story and I look forward to hearing more! Happy planning :D



#3 vancouverpetunia

vancouverpetunia
  • Member
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  • Wedding Date:April 7, 2016
  • Wedding Location:Now Sapphire, Riviera Maya, Mexico
  • LocationVancouver, Canada

Posted 15 April 2015 - 05:06 PM

@Victoriabride I'm sure you are not behind. Like I said, I'm a planner and this is my new obsession. I can't believe I already have flower ideas to send to the WC for a quote. LOL I'm a bit of a geek when it comes to this kind of stuff.


Edited by vancouverpetunia, 15 April 2015 - 05:06 PM.

- Erin

 

My planning thread: http://www.bestdesti...2016/?p=1893268

 

My Now Sapphire review: http://www.bestdesti...riviera-cancun/


#4 snswedding2016

snswedding2016
  • Member
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  • Wedding Date:January 9, 2016
  • Wedding Location:Azul Fives
  • LocationToronto, Canada

Posted 15 April 2015 - 05:07 PM

So excited for another planning thread to read!! It looks like things are coming together nicely! I also found choosing the location and the booking process the most stressful part. Now you get to do the fun stuff!! I have a long way to go as well but I remember when I first started planning I had 14 months and that feels like it was yesterday and now we're just under 9 months to go. It does go by quickly, and like you I'm a planner! Enjoy every minute of the planning process!! :)


My planning thread - http://www.bestdesti...016-azul-fives/

 

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#5 vancouverpetunia

vancouverpetunia
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  • 670 posts
  • Wedding Date:April 7, 2016
  • Wedding Location:Now Sapphire, Riviera Maya, Mexico
  • LocationVancouver, Canada

Posted 15 April 2015 - 05:29 PM

@snswedding2016 I had missed your planning thread and just browsed through it. Love your ideas and looks like you have everything under control. The clutches instead of bouquets is interesting. I never would have come up with that, but I'm going to think about it a bit. That photo from Etsy looks really cool. But I'm only having 2 BMs/MOHs, so not sure if it would have as much impact?

 

P.S. Khao San Road is amazing. I went there the last time I was in TO.


- Erin

 

My planning thread: http://www.bestdesti...2016/?p=1893268

 

My Now Sapphire review: http://www.bestdesti...riviera-cancun/


#6 calgarybride2015

calgarybride2015
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  • Wedding Date:January 21, 2015
  • Wedding Location:Grand Sirenis Riviera Maya
  • LocationCalgary, AB

Posted 15 April 2015 - 06:06 PM

YAY!!! another new thread :)

 

First off, I LOVE the story about how you met.  That is such an awesome story and to tie the knot in the same country is just fabulous.  Congrats!

 

Where in the Okanagan are you from?  My husband is from Kelowna and I really love the area (yes, 2013 was the first time I had been - man I missed out all these years) We also considered a wedding at a winery there, but the cost was high and as you know the summer time is huge for the area so guests finding cheap hotels, etc. was probably slim to none, it just wasn't going to work!    We still go out a few times a summer to use our boat -- his dad still lives there and some friends. Man! I wish I could move there but who can afford it?

 

My only advice with respect to the deposits is to hang in there.  Most of our guests booked in the last 2 days!!! it was super stressful but it all worked out :)  3 months married now and having a destination wedding was the best thing we could have ever done.

 

I look forward to seeing your wedding planning evolve.


-Kim

Married on 2015/01/21 at the Grand Sirenis Riviera Maya with 43 guests in attendance   :)

 

Planning Thread - http://www.bestdesti...s-riviera-maya/

 

Wedding Pictures http://www.bestdesti...ra-maya/page-36

 

Wedding Review http://www.bestdesti...31#entry1885600

 

 


#7 vancouverpetunia

vancouverpetunia
  • Member
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  • Wedding Date:April 7, 2016
  • Wedding Location:Now Sapphire, Riviera Maya, Mexico
  • LocationVancouver, Canada

Posted 15 April 2015 - 06:13 PM

@calgarybride2015 I'm from Vernon. Lived there from grade 8 - 12 and my parents lived there for over 25 years. I do love visiting, I just wish I still had a free place to stay! Actually, if my parents still lived there I think we would have gotten married at their house. They had a beautiful place along a cliff overlooking Okanagan Lake. But they didn't take their spinster daughter's future marriage plans into consideration when they decided to retire to Vancouver Island  :huh:

 

Thanks for the advice on the bookings. When we first sent out the STDs, our TA said she had never seen such a fast and large response! I just sent out a reminder last night since we are a month from the deadline (figure I will send one more at the one week mark), and 2 more couples have since contacted her, so things are moving along! I figure it's their problem if they book later and have to pay more  :P But I will do my best to herd the cats. 


Edited by vancouverpetunia, 15 April 2015 - 06:16 PM.

- Erin

 

My planning thread: http://www.bestdesti...2016/?p=1893268

 

My Now Sapphire review: http://www.bestdesti...riviera-cancun/


#8 calgarybride2015

calgarybride2015
  • Sr. Member
  • 4,506 posts
  • Wedding Date:January 21, 2015
  • Wedding Location:Grand Sirenis Riviera Maya
  • LocationCalgary, AB

Posted 15 April 2015 - 06:19 PM

@vancouverpetunia

 

Yes! this summer will be hard for us as we won't have a place to stay. Up until last year my husband shared in the expense to have a place there so we had somewhere to stay all summer!  Well the guy decided to move in with his girlfriend and we needed wedding money --- sooooo this summer should be interesting.    My sister's brother in law has a place over Okanagan Lake in Vernon so we are hoping we can stay there heheh!!!!       It is a beautiful area.

 

We did reminders as well, definitely at 2 weeks out, and then at 1 week out.  We even had people book after the deadline but our TA was able to secure them the same price. Thankfully most people booked in time!  We had 4 people book outside the group but that was ok!  We had more than enough book with us to get some of the freebie/discounts!

 

Is your fiance originally from the Vancouver area? I am actually from northern BC (born in Terrace but mainly lived in Fort. St. John) I have been in Calgary for 15 years though!


-Kim

Married on 2015/01/21 at the Grand Sirenis Riviera Maya with 43 guests in attendance   :)

 

Planning Thread - http://www.bestdesti...s-riviera-maya/

 

Wedding Pictures http://www.bestdesti...ra-maya/page-36

 

Wedding Review http://www.bestdesti...31#entry1885600

 

 


#9 vancouverpetunia

vancouverpetunia
  • Member
  • 670 posts
  • Wedding Date:April 7, 2016
  • Wedding Location:Now Sapphire, Riviera Maya, Mexico
  • LocationVancouver, Canada

Posted 15 April 2015 - 06:21 PM

@calgarybride2015

 

Oh, that sounds like a perfect set up for summer in the Okanagan. Too bad it no longer works. Yes, he's from Delta and I lived in Langley when I was a young child, before moving to the Okanagan.


- Erin

 

My planning thread: http://www.bestdesti...2016/?p=1893268

 

My Now Sapphire review: http://www.bestdesti...riviera-cancun/


#10 acw271011

acw271011
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  • Wedding Date:October 20, 2011
  • Wedding Location:We tied the knot in Runaway Bay, Jamaica and renewed our vows in Mexico on our 4th Anniversary
  • LocationToronto Area

Posted 15 April 2015 - 07:22 PM

Your thread is great! Good start! I look forward to seeing it continue!

 

I have family in Langley. My dad moved west from Ontario with my brother several years after my mom passed away so more than 30 years ago now. He started in Richmond, then on to New Westminster, Surrey and now Langley. He'll be 94 in May bless him lol My son went to Vancouver to work with the Olympics 5 years ago and phoned me after they ended and said he wasn't coming back and could I please send his stuff!! We went out for a quick visit right before I went back to work last fall after being in the hospital and really enjoyed it. My husband used to be out there a lot for business so took me to Steveston for dinner and to a place right downtown where the artists are. Can't remember the name now. Right on the water at the base of a bridge. Anyway, we also tried to get up Grouse Mountain but it was a really foggy day and we figured we wouldn't see anything so that's on the agenda for another visit sometime.

 

Happy planning!


I said "yes" again to the love of my life at Grand Coral Beach Club, Playa del Carmen, Mexico on our 4th anniversary - October 20, 2015

 

 

http://www.bestdestinationwedding.com/topic/78874-acw271011-so-this-is-not-a-planning-thread-but/

 

 

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