Q & A: Leydy and Juan at Dreams Sands

Bride: Leydy
Groom: Juan
Resort: Dreams Sands Cancun  
Agent: Lesley

 

 

What made you decide on having a destination wedding?  

 The size of our family is very large, and we did not want to make a hug expense on a party.

 

Having a destination wedding sounded like the best of both worlds. We would be able to get married by the beach and also take a trip to a new place as a family.

A destination wedding had been always pin on my Pinterest board but never really thought it would be an option.

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

 I came across an add on Pinterest of Legacy Travel and decided to give them a call and see what they had to offer.

 

I had already made reservation at another resort in Cancun, prior to meeting with Lesley, however I was not able to have a one on one communication with the wedding coordinator so that was not a good thing.

Once we arrived and meet Lesley, she listened to all of our ideas and provided very detailed information about the resort, the amenities and everything surrounding. My fiancé and I loved everything and we automatically knew we wanted to work with Lesley. 

 

What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding? 

The biggest difficulty was trying to express my ideas to the wedding coordinator. We both had different ideas of what would be the best way to do things.

 

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

Our biggest highlight was that our family loved the ceremony, the resort and the environment. None of us had ever attended a destination wedding or Cancun and the fact that we all went together was a blessing. 

 Another highlight was that we had a sand ceremony and we included my son. We brought the sand back home and my son absolutely loves it. Every day on the way out the door he stops and looks at it.

How well was the resort and you’re On Site Wedding Coordinator to work with? 

The resort was amazing, since the minute we stepped in to when we walked in. The staff was so nice and welcoming in. We meet some great people and made new friends. Our guest and kids loved it. We felt save at all times.

 The coordinator was very nice, but I felt like she had a lot on her plate and the one on one experience was not the best.

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

I would defiantly recommend Legacy Travel. I would recommend a different season. Our ceremony was on Aug,10 and that is hurricane season so more rain is expected causing the seaweed to come up to shore and the beach not to be as cleaned as one would of liked. I would also suggest that she plans it with plenty of time so any ideas and details could be worked out for the big day.

Was there anything that you would change looking back? 

Yes, I would most certainly have changed the planning time frame, I would also change the season that we booked. It might be a little warmer but the beach would not have so much sea weed on the shore. 

Ashley and Randy’s Dream Wedding

Bride: Ashley
Groom: Randy
Resort: Dreams Sands Cancun  
Agent: Lesley
 
What made you decide on having a destination wedding?   
 
It was the most cost effective option that gave us a dream wedding and honeymoon all-in-one at a fraction of the traditional wedding price tag!
 
 
What made you decide on the destination/resort/venue? 
The free wedding package, awesome and romantic honeymoon suite, it was kid friendly which was a must for us since my 11 year old son would be joining the celebration, and the beach! The white sand and clear blue water is why I picked the resort. It had the best beach of all the resorts I looked at… and I looked at A LOT! 
 
 
What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding?
 
I planned my destination wedding in 2 months start to finish… I didn’t run into complications but I would say that what took me the longest was picking the destination and resort. We initially wanted a Jamaica wedding for a legal ceremony with out the blood tests, etc that Mexico requires. In the end we decided to get married in Cancun to save money. We did the symbolic wedding to avoid the mentioned requirements and our guests were non the wiser. We got married in the court house privately before we left. We had no issues at all. 
 
What was the highlight of the experience and what was the biggest surprise? 
Highlights let’s see… the food was AMAZING! The staff was great (you MUST visit Armando the bar tender at the ocean side bar, he’s the best ever! He is so friendly and remembers every guest name! He makes your bar visit feel personal like you’ve been a regular for years.) The beach was perfect, so beautiful and clean! The rooms were the best I have EVER stayed in and my wedding was everything I wanted it to be. Ruby and her staff went above and beyond to make my wedding so nice, I can’t say that enough!! The night of our wedding the staff surprised us by having our room decorated with rose peddles, champagne, balloons, etc. 
 
 
How well was the resort and your On site Wedding Coordinator to work with?  
 
  The Resort staff was very accommodating. Ruby our wedding coordinator was beyond amazing! She took care of everything and when I couldn’t afford a few add-ons to our package she surprised me the day of with the few extra touches at no additional charge. I really think Ruby and her staff went above and beyond to make my wedding stress free and wonderful. We also added the Amber photography package and the photographer was great! I get complements all the time that our wedding photos look like something that should be in an add magazine. We are both very happy with the way our wedding photos turned out!
 
If your best friend were planning a destination wedding what would your advice be to her?
 
I have recommended a destination wedding to everyone I know. I am very happy we skipped all the traditional wedding stress and family drama with our choice. We had 12 guest come to our wedding, so with the bride and groom our total wedding party was 14 people. I feel like we had the perfect turn out!… Especially with only 2 months notice!
 
Was there anything that you would change looking back?
 
 The only thing I would have changed is that I would ask the wedding coordinator to do a walk through before hand. My son walked me down the isle and I wasn’t exactly sure where to walk, then once down in front the three of us (my husband, son and I) kind of felt lost as to where to stand. A walk through is the only thing that could have made my wedding more comfortable. 
 
 
Lastly I want to speak praise over my travel agent Lesley. She was Amazing. She helped me plan travel arrangements for 14 people and was there at every turn to aid and assist. I never had to worry or stress about anything. She always made me feel like I was her top priority. I never felt like she was too busy for me or that she was hard to get ahold of. She also had very good advice when I asked for it and was never pushy or over barring. My husband and I both decided that she will be planning all of our family and anniversary trips from here on out! Thank you so much Lesley for all you help and support. 
 
 
 
 
 

Ruba in Aruba: Q & A With the Bride

Bride: Ruba
Groom: James
Resort: Divi Aruba 
Agent: Alyssa

What made you decide on having a destination wedding?

I’ve always dreamed of having a beach wedding since I was a little girl, but since there aren’t any beaches in Dallas where I live, I had to look elsewhere!

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

I decided on Aruba for a few reasons. First, my name is Ruba – I know it is silly but I’ve always wanted to go there and it seemed like the perfect opportunity! Second, my friend had told me how she had just attended a wedding in Aruba and how wonderful it had been so it got me even more interested. I’ve also had family who had visited before who also had great things to say about it. Third, when I was reaching out to venues in Aruba, I heard back from an event planner in Aruba who showed me pictures of all the amazing weddings they had hosted at the venue that she works out of, and she showed me what she could do which gave me more faith in having the wedding in Aruba. 

What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding? 

Trying to get guests to RSVP on time – there were several who didn’t bother to tell us no so it was hard to get an accurate estimate on number of attendees. Without an estimate, it was difficult to assess how many goody bags needed to be prepared, how many guests would need transportation to the hotel, how many for the rehearsal dinner, how many meals were needed, etc.

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

I would tell her to pick a place that isn’t too expensive for guests to fly out to.

 

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

The highlight was seeing all our friends and family coming together and having a great time meeting and hanging out with each other in such a beautiful setting. This was most apparent when we booked a sunset cruise for all the guests two nights before the wedding. Everyone was relaxed and dancing since it was a vacation for all! We got to spend real quality time with everyone before the wedding which doesn’t typically happen at a non-destination wedding. The biggest surprise was seeing all the cactus growing in Aruba!

How was the resort and your Onsite WeddingCoordinator to work with?

My event planner was amazing! She is based out of the resort that we had the wedding at so she knew all the staff and had all the hookups. She was very organized as well. The resort where we had the wedding was very beautiful! There was a great place for the beach ceremony, and then the reception building was only a few steps away that also overlooked the ocean.

Was there anything that you would change looking back?

I would still probably do a destination wedding, but I would probably choose a more affordable/closer destination for the guests. I also probably would have moved us to a different resort after the wedding so that we could have a true honeymoon to ourselves – we kept running into the guests after the wedding since the resort was so small.

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

I think having a travel agent made travel arrangements much easier as there was less to worry about when it came to the hotel, flight, etc. I also think it encouraged people to come who otherwise wouldn’t have if they had had to book everything themselves. The resort we stayed at was perfect for the event – small enough that we could spend time with all the other guests staying there, but big enough to accommodate all of us at dinners, beach, pool, etc.

Xercerla & David’s Royal Wedding

Bride: Xercerla
Groom: David
Resort: Royalton Riviera Cancun 
Agent: Lesley 

We decided to have a destination wedding because it was much cheaper than a traditional wedding and wanted to have it in an exotic location.
 
We decided on the resort through the recommendation given to us by Lesley at Legacy Travel.
The biggest difficulty in setting up the wedding was organizing the guests and getting people to spend the money to travel to the location.
 
 
The highlight of our trip was the wedding itself. The resort outdid themselves in the location and setting of the wedding. Can’t say there were any big surprises, everything went as planned and lived up to our hopes and expectations.
The resort and onsite coordinator was wonderful. They catered to our every need and made sure we enjoyed our experience.
 
 
Our advice to anyone planning a destination wedding is to plan well in advance of the wedding. Get those invitations out at least a year in advance.
The only thing we would have changed is to make sure in advance that everybody is staying in the same area of the resort. We were separated from our guests by being placed in a different section of the resort, which made it difficult to hang out with them.

One Fine Day at the Finest Playa Mujeres

Bride:  Kristin
Groom: Trevor
Resort: Finest Playa Mujeres
Agent: Audrey

  1. What made you decide on having a destination wedding?  We wanted a small, affordable wedding and beautiful pictures.  The way we looked at it was that your wedding goes by in a blink.  The pictures and memories are what you have forever.  Who forgets a vacation with all of your closest friends and family?  
  2. What made you decide on the destination/resort/venue? We ‘d heard good things about the sister properties (Beloved & Excellence) from friends who had stayed there.  The beach area there is private, so it wasn’t going to be as busy.  Plus, I really liked the stone gazebo!  
  3. What was the biggest difficulty in planning your destination wedding?  Not having seen the resort first hand, really trusting my wedding coordinator, and being patient.  The coordinators have at least one wedding a day, so be prepared to be put on the back burner a little until it’s closer to your big day. Destination weddings are truly meant for the stress-less, go-with-flow bride.  I must add.. They handled everything beautifully!
  4. What was the highlight of the experience and what was the biggest surprise?  The COST!  We NEVER could’ve had a wedding that beautiful in DFW at that price.  AND the SPA! It was incredible. The biggest surprise was how much all of our guests (even those who weren’t otherwise acquainted) mingled before and after the wedding. It made the wedding reception that much more fun!
  5. How well was the resort and your Onsite Wedding Coordinator to work with? See question #3.  She pulled it off, but there were times where I had to remind myself that she knows what she is doing.  There were a lot of details that I was certain of until the day before the wedding.
  6. If your best friend were planning a destination wedding what would your advice be to her? DO IT!  Other than that, I would tell her to make decisions (flowers, cake, music, etc..), and email them to your wedding coordinator as early as you can.  I procrastinated, and it made things a tad more stressful.  Also, do your research!  I did quite a bit of poking around vacation forums to find out about the experiences of others who had gotten married at Finest.  It helped me make lots of decisions along the way.
  7. Was there anything that you would change looking back? I would’ve invited more people and given them at least a year notice.
  8. Is there anything else you want to add about the resort or your booking agent? My agent, Audrey, was a lifesaver!  When I called her, I had no idea what I was doing.  I knew I wanted all of my guests to travel to my wedding, but I had no idea about how to decide on a resort or what information to give them.  She gave me tips that I never would’ve thought to ask.  I never worried about the travel arrangements.  It was the easiest part of my wedding planning experience.  She took great care of us and our guests!  Our resort, Finest Playa Mujeres, was just gorgeous!  Very clean, delicious food, great entertainment, and attentive staff.  We are already planning an anniversary trip!  As are several of our guests!