Photobook: Addie and Shane at Riu Palace Mexico

Bride: Addie

Groom: Shane

Resort: Riu Palace Mexico

Travel Advisor: Terrah

 

Our trip/wedding in Mexico was everything I had ever dreamed of. Everyone was so nice and helpful throughout the whole trip! Thank you so much again for all your help. 

Q&A With Bride Allyson: Secrets Papagayo

Bride: Allyson

Groom: Kyle

Resort: Secrets Papagayo

Travel Advisor: Hannah 

 
What made you decide on having a destination wedding?
 
We love to travel and loved the idea of going somewhere fun with friends and family.  I also never wanted a big wedding so it was a good way to keep it small and simple.  Everything is taken care of for you, you just show up and enjoy it instead of stressing about all the work involved in a typical wedding. 
 
 
 
What made you decide on the destination/resort/venue? 
 
Kyle wanted to go to Costa Rica, the first place I saw when i googled weddings in Costa Rica was Secrets.  I have been to a Secrets resort in Mexico and knew they were a reputable resort.  
 
 
 
What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding?
 
 Not seeing things for yourself and knowing exactly what it would look like.  Also communicating with the coordinator through email. 
 
 
 
What was the highlight of the experience and what was the biggest surprise?
 
Everything was taken care of and set up perfectly with no stress from us.  The decor was set up so much better than I could have ever imagined it.  Also making the decision to move the reception to a covered area took away the stress off of worrying about rain and ended up being a cooler look and feel than I thought it would be. 
 
 
 
 
How well was the resort and your Onsite Wedding Coordinator to work with?
 
The resort went above and beyond to make sure everything was taken care of and the onsite coordinator, Carolina, was very attentive and answered all my questions in a timely manner.  She was always available at the resort if we needed her.
 
 
 
If your best friend were planning a destination wedding what would your advice be to her? 
 
I  would recommend doing it as a way to keep it small, cheaper, and stress free.  Also I love any excuse to take a trip and it can easily turn into your honeymoon.  I would recommend either staying several days after your guests leave or moving onto a second location to get an actual family free honeymoon!
 
Was there anything that you would change looking back? 
 
I can’t think of anything.  Everything really turned out more perfect than I could have imagined!  

Bridal Interview: Kristina at Secrets Silversands

Bride: Kristina

Groom: Matthew

Resort: Secrets Silversands

Travel Advisor: Audrey

 

What made you decide on having a destination wedding?

My husband and I decided to have a destination wedding because we wanted our guests to have a vacation.  Neither my husband nor I are from Dallas. All of our guests were going to have to travel to our wedding and we wanted to have an experience that lasted more than 1 day.  

 

What made you decide on the destination/resort/venue?

We decided to have our wedding in Mexico for several reasons.  We wanted to select a place that had a large airport with a wide variety of flights.  We also loved how we could get everything we wanted in Mexico. This made Cancun the perfect place for us.  

I have always loved the Secrets Resorts.  They do an amazing job with weddings and with customer service.  After talking with our travel agent Audrey, we selected Secrets Silversands.  I really liked how it was close to the airport. The last thing I wanted was to fly to Mexico then sit in the car for 2 hours getting to our resort.  

What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding?

The biggest difficulty I had with our destination wedding was giving up control and trusting people.  I was unable to do a site visit prior to our wedding. I had to have faith that my wedding coordinator, resort and everyone involved in our wedding knew what they were doing.  

How well was the resort and your On site Wedding Coordinator to work with?

The resort was beautiful and super friendly.  I loved how this was an adult only resort so we were able to relax without having to worry about children.  I also really enjoyed the number of pools and restaurants the resort had on-site.

My wedding coordinator was amazing.  Veronica knew what she was doing and was quick to respond to any questions or last minute changes I requested.  She made sure that everyone was in the right place and the right time. It really allowed me the opportunity to enjoy the day and not stress about anything.  

What was the highlight of the experience and what was the biggest surprise?

The highlight of this whole trip was the wonderful memories everyone made.  This was truly a vacation with my family and best friends.

 

If your best friend were planning a destination wedding what would your advice be to her?

Trust that everything is going to work out and be beautiful, don’t look at the weather and enjoy your day.

would also tell her to use Legacy Travel to help with guests booking their trips.  I knew when everyone was arriving so we were able to meet everyone in the lobby.

 

Was there anything that you would change looking back?

We wouldn’t change anything.

Is there anything else you want to add about the resort or your booking agent Audrey?

Audrey was wonderful to work with.  She was quick to respond to any problems anyone had.  She was also the person who suggested this resort and helped with establishing communication with the wedding coordinator at the resort.  

 

 

 

Q & A With Bride Sarah: Now Onyx

Bride: Sarah

Groom: Christopher

Resort: Now Onyx

Travel Advisor: Alyssa

 

My husband (love saying that now) and I had our DREAM wedding in Punta Cana on May 7th, 2018. I always knew I wanted to have a destination wedding. Just the though of having our toes in the sand, a beautiful beach setting around us and a sunset during our reception was too perfect to pass up. As all of this sounded great in my head, when it came to planning it… I got extremely overwhelmed immediately. I guess I should start with the fact that I am a planner, I love planning parties and I do it with stride. The fact that I got stressed out immediately trying to narrow down a location, date, venue and pricing made me want to give up and just have it in Dallas. I felt like I would have more control. Venting these frustrations to a random stranger at my daughters school, she recommended me to Legacy Travel. Contacting Alyssa changed my life overnight. 

 

 

She recommended many different resorts, contacted the resorts for available dates, sent me wedding packages, pricing and more. Once I was able to narrow things down, which took me about a week, I felt 100% better about the entire process. The main issue I was having with resorts is A. they don’t respond B. they want a ton of information from you before answering any questions C. You cannot talk to a coordinator until you lock in a date and deposit. Alyssa took care of A, B, and C for me. When I locked down the resort after reviewing my options, she then introduced me to our Wedding Coordinator, Manuela, at Now Onyx Punta Cana. The process was smooth sailing from there.

 

 

After choosing a “package” she then sent me a 90+ page PDF of options for the wedding. This included table linens, chairs, centerpieces, decorations, charger plates, flowers, cakes, gazebo options, etc. Ladies, please note that planning a destination wedding isn’t a year long process, I learned this quickly. It is 100x easier so you do not start planning until 2 months prior. I locked down our date about 8 months out, reviewed the PDF catalog for about a month or so and sent Manuela my “tentative” options to get a budget together. Once I had my budget, I reviewed that catalog for the next 4 months until we started finalizing the plans 6-8 weeks before the wedding. The greatest thing about this, was I didn’t stress about a wedding for 8 months. During the months I wasn’t planning, I was gathering information from Alyssa on pricing for my guests and got all of that sent out immediately to get everyone the best price possible. About 80% of our 52 person wedding guest list went through Legacy, the others used their points.

 

 

Why did I choose Now Onyx? A few reasons… I have an 8 year old so I needed the resort to be family friendly but I didn’t want 100 children running around everywhere as most of my guests do not have children. I wanted a nice resort (this is one of the newest properties in Punta Cana) but I needed it to be reasonably priced for our guests. Now Onyx offered it all. They were affordable and had everything I was looking for including an adults only sister property next door, Breathless. Guests were able to resort hop and enjoy pool parties next door. Most of us spent our time at Breathless. However, NowOnyx is a nicer resort as its much newer. 

 

 

I guess I should talk about the wedding now. 🙂 The wedding was PERFECT. You will see pictures attached to this blog. Everything was beautiful, the weather, the set up and the service. I knew it would be gorgeous but I didn’t expect it to look as amazing as it did. My husband and I were so pleased with everything. I did change a few things on the menu as I didn’t want your typical steak, mash potatoes, and green bean dinner. We did a pizza bar. This included 5 different types of pizza, pasta salad, a salad bar, wings, fruit and more.

 

 

 

Our wedding was completely magical. We spent an entire week with our closest friends and family which was so special to us. Everyone had such a great time. Writing this blog has me tearing up because Now Onyx went above and beyond for everyone. We are extremely thankful.

Recommendations: The day after the wedding we took everyone out on a 3 hour long party boat to go snorkeling and to a sand bar where other boats doc and party. We had unlimited alcohol, sandwiches, and a DJ! I highly recommend this if you have it in your budget. I am pretty sure this was everyone’s favorite part of the trip. We were thanked a million times for adding this in. 
The company we used was La Barcaza Even Boat: https://www.facebook.com/LaBarcazaEventBoat

 

 

Budget: 12k

Guests: 52

Upgrades: We upgraded every possible thing you can think of!

Only regret: Not making everyone go home 2 days after the wedding. We had zero alone time.

 

Interview with the Bride: Haley’s Majestic Wedding

Bride: Haley

Groom: Michael

Resort: Majestic Mirage

Travel Advisor: Lesley

 

1.) What made you decide on having a destination wedding?

We chose to do a destination wedding because it allowed us to extend the celebration. Couples spend countless hours and money in preparation for just one day, which goes by so fast. Why not make it a week long celebration with all your family and friends in a beautiful place!

2.) what made you decide on the destination/ resort/ venue?

We looked through countless resorts in Punta Cana and in other countries. What helped us decide was from reviews as well as the pictures of the resorts. I also liked the fact that the Majestic mirage was the newest of the resort. 

 

 
3.) What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding?

What was most difficult was in the beginning trying to figure out how many guest where going to actually be coming to the wedding. After finding out the actual number, decision making is much easier!

4.) What was the highlight of the experience and what was the biggest surprise? 
Besides the obvious my wedding was the highlight of my trip. Going on the excursion was very fun and a great time with friends and family. A pleasant surprise was how awesome the coffee shop was at the resort!! 
 
 
 
 
5.) How well was the resort and your On site Wedding Coordinator to work with?  
They where fantastic! Both of them where very attentive and on top of their jobs. They absolutely kept me on track during the week and especially for the wedding day. 
6.) If your best friend were planning a destination wedding what would your advice be to her?
Don’t sweat the small stuff! Don’t get to caught up on what Pinterest is telling you to do. Don’t ever assume things, don’t be afraid to ask questions!
7.) Was there anything that you would change looking back?
NO WAY! I couldn’t have imagined a more perfect week let alone a more perfect wedding!!