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Time: 1PM Civil Ceremony
Place: White Sand Wedding Gazebo (on the beach near Punta Emelia beach bar)
# in wedding party: 19 including bride and groom
Cocktail/Appitizer Party: 2:30 - 4:30PM - Bar Hemingway, Kentenah Lobby
Dinner: Portofino patio - 6:30PM
First, let me say that GP is the perfect setting for a destination wedding. It is beautiful beyond words and large and diverse enough to satisfy everyone in our party. We were a group of 19 immediate family members of the bride and groom ( grandparents, parents, and siblings and families). This made for a very intimate and special family time for all of us. Some of us stayed in the Royal Yucatan while others were in White Sand. Everyone was very pleased with the accommodations.
Erika was our contact person throughout the entire process. I met with her in April, 2009, while we were vacationing at GP with a list of questions for our already booked Nov. wedding. She is a wealth of knowlege and ever so patient with inquiries. She and her assistant, Ari, saw that all the details were covered. We met with her on Tues. morning ( bride, groom and witnesses) to confirm all the details, choose the flowers and cake, have bride and groom bloodtests, and attend to paperwork. All done very efficiently .
Then we all kicked back, enjoyed one another's company (volleyball, spa and gym, pools, snorkling) and before we knew it, Friday was upon us. The "girls" had manicures on Thursday and the bride had her hair done Fri. am at the spa - They did a great job. Luckily one of my daughters speaks spanish so we could translate the hairdo ideas to the talented beautician. Bring pictures (although they do have bridal hair-do books) and be specific about what you do and do not want.
My daughter and I waited back at the room for everyone to arrive at the beach gazebo(officiant was a little late) and Pedro picked us up in a cart and carried us off to the ceremony site. Since we did not have getting- ready photos, the photographer (Erick from Claudia Rodriquez Photography) was waiting there as well.The gazebo was absolutely gorgeous with rose petals marking the walkway, creamy dome and pillars against a brilliant sky and turquoise sea.
The ceremony lasted about 20 minutes and was beautiful and touching. The officiant spoke English and is flexible in how you want to do your vows. We used and ipod playlist including 3 songs (processional, document signing, and recessional) which were executed flawlessly. After the ceremony we were served champagne in flutes, while we mingled and the photographer took family photos on the beach. Of course, they do not shut down the area for the wedding so expect hotel guests in beachwear standing in the perimeter taking photos and watching. This did not bother us.
After this we were transported to the Kantenah Lobby and Bar Hemingway, which we had all to ourselves, for the cocktail appetizer party. We also had an ipod playlist for this. Sound system was good. The room is beautiful with high ceilings and woven chairs. Tables were clothed in white with rose-petal hearts, candles and starfish decorations. The food was wonderful! We selected 6 hot and 6 cold appetizers and they were displayed beautifully! Flutes of champagne welcomed us and the bartender was at our disposal for the entire 2 hours. I couldn't have been more impressed. Plenty of room for mingling, eating, drinking and dancing.
We had time to freshen up before dinner at Portofino at 6:30. Dinnner was on the patio which is decorated in white lights. Tables were in white and set up in a half-rectangle formation. We had caprese salad, minestrone soup and king prawns for the meal -all of it delicious and tres leche wedding cake for dessert. The service was excellent.
I cannot say enough about the expert work of the wedding coordinators. Erika and Ari made our daughter's wedding easy, memorable and beautiful. I highly recommend their services to anyone considering being married at the GP Riviera Maya. In fact everyone that provided service for us that day was courteous, professional and went out of their way to make the day special.
If you have made your decision to have a wedding at GP, Riviera Maya, congratulations! Best wishes for a beautiful day and a beautiful life!
Abbi & Jim
November is great for the wedding! Our day was perfect - about 80 degrees F, low humidity, no gale-force wind on the beach and light clouds. I wish the same for you. My daughter had a good idea what she wanted for her bouquet and they were able to do it just right. We let the florist design the centerpiece to compliment the colors in her bouquet and likewise the cake topper. The book we looked at for ideas in the WC's office was Teleflora, I believe . Erika said if we wanted something different we could provide a picture and they would do it. We did ask ahead about the availability of certain kinds of flowers ie peonies, which were not available.
As for the cocktail party, it certainly worked out well for us. It got the grandparents out of the sun and into a beautiful air-conditioned setting and gave us all privacy for the first dance etc as we were not having a reception. Also since the wedding was at 1 PM we were all ready to have something to eat as we had missed lunch and supper was not until 6:30. The appetizers were excellent both in presentation and taste. I don't know what time you are being married or how many people you are having - that would influence the possibility and location of a cocktail /appie party between ceremony and dinner or reception. Rely on Erika for advice. I had originally planned to have the cocktil/appie party in one of the huts at Punta Emilia. I asked Erika's advice on my selections and she said that since it was the hottest and busiest time of day at Puta Emilia, she thought we would be more comfortable inside. She was right!!