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athena

Member Since 31 Dec 2007
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Royal Playa del Carmen - Photo Slideshow

05 March 2009 - 03:31 PM

We were married on December 6th, 2008 at the Royal in Playa del Carmen, MX. We used the resort photographer and videographer (Funever Photos). Here is the link to our wedding photo slideshow. Enjoy!

Legal Wedding, Royal Playa del Carmen, Mayan Riviera - VERY LONG!

22 December 2008 - 06:44 PM

The Royal Playa del Carmen, Legal wedding Dec 6/08
(We don’t have our photos yet; we’ll hopefully have them from Funever in January. I’ll do a review of them with some pics then.)

I want to start off by thanking the forum and everyone on it. It has given us so much insight into all the possibilities for weddings. It was also so awesome to have the ability to chat with other Brides with the same joy and wedding stress as we did.


We were married at The Royal in Playa del Carmen December 6th, 2008. All of our vendors were booked through the resort. We booked our wedding in December of 07, so we were given 07’s pricing & incentives (big saver for us!). We had booked into the Gran Porto Real for 2 weeks in April 2005 (with 14 others as well). The Royal was in the middle of construction, but all the rooms close to the ocean were completed. The Gran was way overbooked, so we were bumped into the Royal’s oceanview rooms. We loved the resort and the location. So when we decided on a destination wedding, we picked the Royal right away.

WHY WE PICKED A DESTINATION WEDDING:
We both have large families, so a “home town” wedding would be approx. 350 guests. We live in a small town (7000 people). Due to snow, the Recreational Center collapsed a year before we were engaged and the new one was under construction. Our town still has no venue to hold such a large function. As well, due to the small town size, there are not many vendors. We also had been to my hubby’s brother’s destination wedding in Nov 05 (Punta Cana) and enjoyed the “no stress” wedding.

I have to admit, we did not have the same worries most bride and grooms have, as we had been to a destination wedding and stayed at our choice resort.


Resort
The resort was excellent. Our guests (and us) loved the 24hr room service. We only tried three restaurants, but they were excellent (Spice - Buffet; Asiana - ala cart, no reservation, Il Pescatore - Italian at the Gran). But I wold is stay clear of the shashmi at the Asiana. There were very few complaints about the resort and the staff did everything they could to remedy the problem. (ie. Didn’t like their room’s view...) Everyone loved being right by 5th & 10th Ave.

The pool area is awesome. The activities team really does try to get everyone having fun. A lot of the guys with us played water volleyball and had a hoot! There were fun bartending classes, crazy games, dance lessons, water aerobics, and how to make the neat towel animals!

We booked into the Presidential Suite, which was amazing. The room is awesome for a large group, and the private pool was awesome. The only draw back was the service level for this type of room did not meet our expectations and the pool water usually sloshed over onto the lobby/Spice stairs and Tequila bar.


Wedding:
We had 24 guests staying at the resort, 2 at the Gran, and 6 at the Blue Parrot Suites.

We arrived Saturday night, and met with Micaela on the Tuesday. We made almost all of our decisions during this appointment. Our wedding was originally booked for 4PM (like most weddings). But we noticed that by 4PM in December, the sun was almost fully gone. We told Micaela about our concerns, and she mentioned to change the wedding time to 1PM, which is the best time during the winter months. It was the best decision as we had the whole afternoon to take a ton of pictures. During our appointment with Micaela we also:
-booked hair & make up with the spa ($65 for the hair, $60 for makeup)
-had our blood tests done (it was actually really easy) and had a really quick “physical” with the doctor (he asked us if we felt healthy, and if we had been to the hospital in the last 2 years...)
-picked out our “free” centerpiece (she had a bunch of pictures and it came free with the ceremony package)
-picked out a red runner for the gazebo and white rose petals to go on it (5 bags in total)
-picked out the cake (Tres Leches - very good, I guess it’s the Mexican wedding cake)
-went over seating plan.
-re-confirmed everything else (photos, videographer, miriachi band, dj, the food)
-she also showed us some photos of the gazebo and beach reception as well as a sample book of photography (She has a ton of photos on her computer - ask to see some!!!)
-picked out the music for walking down the aisle. (Resort’s music - canon in d)
-agreed that we needed 7 extra bottles of champagne for after the ceremony. It was well needed for a total of 9 bottles for 32 people.
-gave her our favors, guest book and personalized napkins.
(Favors - myweddingfavors.com, guest book - theguestbookstore.com, napkins & cake topper- weddingstar.com)
-asked about our food choices - she agreed with them and explained the other choices on the menu. She also mentioned that our menu choice was the most requested one.
I had already sent some photos of the orchids I wanted. My photos and instructions weren’t very clear. (The flowers came exactly as I had wanted!!)
Everything was booked through the resort.

Here is a general overview of our wedding:
9AM - My hair, My mom’s hair (Both turned our awesome - we didn’t even go in with pictures. I just told the hair stylist I wanted it curly and up; it was perfect.)
10AM - Maid of Honors hair, my makeup (Again, both turned out awesome. Jose was my make-up artist and I would highly recommend her)
11AM - my 2 Bridesmaids (There was another Bridal Party in the Spa that morning too)
12PM - Photographer is at the room - taking pictures of us getting ready. I had a lace up dress and it took the girls 25min to get me done up!!
Micaela dropped off the flowers and checked on us. She also reminded us of the course of events
12:45PM - Micaela checked on the gazebo and made sure the guys were there.
12:55PM - Micaela picked us up from the room. We walked down to the gazebo. She had a radio in her hand and she was talking with her assistants to make sure everything went according to schedule. The miriachi band was standing in the hall with us.
1PM(ish) - Bridesmaids walk down according to Micaela. Then my mom and I walked down.
The wedding ceremony was beautiful. The judge spoke in Spanish, and Micaela translated. The legal ceremony in Mexico has such touching words. At the end, we signed the 3 copies, then our witnesses and then we finger printed the papers. That was so neat!
The miriachi band played for 45 min after the ceremony. We had the champagne toast, and chatted with our guests. All of our guests, and us, loved the miriachi band. They played what ever songs we or our guests requested.
We got a few group photos in the gazebo, and then it was off to the beach. We gave our guests a chance to have their own photos - which they loved! It also gave us a quite moment. We did photos with our families, and then they went off on their own. We did another hour or so of photos with our wedding party. Then we let them loose and did the rest of the 2 hours on our own. The photographer was very creative and really loved his work. He even packed bird seed to bring birds in around us for some sunset photos and he paid the pier security guard so we could get photos from the pier (I guess most photographers do this one).
We met back at the gazebo at 4:50. Micaela was finishing the beach setup. She had all of our guests seated as we picked the entry song (I’m not sure if this is the name but its “Ow, I feel good....”) The DJ called out for the entry of our attendants, and then introduced us as we walked in . The sun was just finishing setting so there was some light left. The view of our reception was breathtaking and there was a big surprise - a light up dance floor!!
After 10 minutes, Micaela came up and asked us if we were ready for dinner. Within another 10min, the first plates began to come in. (There were 2 other beach wedding receptions that night so they had a full kitchen on the beach. Everything came out fresh and hot).
We ordered: the Royal Seafood salad, Tres Fillets Consomme, Fillet Mignon with chateau potato and strawberry and vodka thousand leaves.
The food was excellent and the presentation was very, very classy. I really liked how everyone stayed seated and the servers did all the work. The dessert was unbelievable!! The photographer took a break while we were eating.
Once the food was done, people started to do speeches and request songs. The DJ was awesome. If he didn’t have a song on his computer, he had it downloaded within minutes.
We went a did some nighttime resort shots with the photographer. We then came back, cut the cake, and then did our first dance. Everyone started dancing after that. The light up dance floor was incredible. We did the Groom song (Sharp dressed man), the Bride song (I knew the bride when she use to rock n roll) and then the garter toss. Our last song was at 9PM. There was a party just down the beach and they had fireworks go off during our last song. It was amazing!
We stayed around the reception for another 20 minutes and then decided to go up to the lobby bar.
They had a live band in the lobby, so we danced to that for another hour. They did all our requests too!

Vendors & Pricing (Royal’s 2007 pricing; all US dollar)
We loved all of our vendors!!
Photography - The Royal Package - $1750.00; Photographer was Caesar - from what he showed us on his camera the 1800 or so photos will be amazing!
Videographer - The Elegant #2 Package - $650 and we added 3 hours for $230 (Again, I’ll do a full review of the pics/video when we get them in January)
Miriachi Band - 45min - $450US
DJ - 4-5hour package, (but he played for only 4) $900.00 (He was excellent!)
Food/Drinks - $50 a plate in resort, $60 for Gran Porto guests, $70 for guests out side resort ($1700.00)
Flowers: All orchids - Bridal Bouquet $280, Bridesmaids $130 x 3, Boutonieers $25 x 5, corsages 25 x 2, rose petals for walkway $20 a bag x 5
Champagne - $15 x 7
Hair (updo) - 5 x $65
Makeup - 1 x $60

Ceremony was free because we booked in 07 and booked into the Presidential suite.

Vacation Package Details:
We live in northern BC and flew out of Vancouver BC. We booked our trips through itravel2000.com and flew with Air Canada. Both were very good.
Our package: 14days, Presidential Suite, full First Class air tickets both ways, with full travel insurance came to: $14,300. (2 of us)
Most of our guests also went with itravel2000.com.
Royal Oceanview Jr. Suite, full first class air tickets both ways, with full travel insurance came to: $6500.00 (for 2 people)
Single was: $4700.00







Advice/Tips
I wouldn't suggest booking a wedding at this time of year. There were a few other weddings that had poor weather (77F). And the evening beach reception was a little chilly for some. Some evenings got down to 15C.

Go to the Coco Bongo in Cancun (playa's isn't open yet). Its the most amazing club i've ever been too.

Write out in detail exactly how you envision your wedding. If there is anything at all that you question - ask the WC during your appointment. They have lots of photos that really helped us.

If your wedding is in the gazebo and you have the red carpet, be careful when walking up the stairs - I kinda tripped because the carpet was a little loose on the stairs.

Whoever is helping you with your dress in the morning, make sure they know every detail. We missed out on getting pics of the groom because it took too long to get my lace up back done up!!

If you or your guests like a special liquor ask ahead of time. We had to make a fuss right before we walked into our reception just so my hubby could have some Captain Morgan Spiced Rum (for him and 3 other attendants). But the bar even had blended drinks.

IF you have guests coming to the wedding from any resort other than the Royal - their ‘free’ wedding day pass is for the entire day, not just the wedding. Our outside guests were kicked out early, by mistake, by the security guard. Micaela came by 10 minutes later and told us this, but it was too late. If in doubt, ask for Micaela (or your WC) immediately.

If you need to see the on-site doctor, try to ask for a price before you begin. One of our very close friends fell in our pool and cut his leg open very deep. After seeing the doctor and getting 7 stitches (3 of which he really didn’t need) the doctor handed him a bill for $500.00 US!!

It's cheaper to sight see if you rent a vehicle and tour around yourself. Driving in Mexico is no different than in a big city. We rent a few jeeps for a couple of days, and split the cost between 4 of us. So much fun!!

Hope this helps future brides!!

Legal Requirements

01 October 2008 - 03:00 PM

I've tried searching the forum, but I haven't found any concrete information. I was wondering if an area could be set up to layout the legal requirements for marriage for the various destinations depending on which country you reside in. Also, it would be great to give the actually addresses/phone numbers to get the documents completed before travel. If this is already here, please just point me in the proper direction.
(I got my documentation back, I'm just still worried that it hasn't been done properly!)
Thanks Athena