Okay... I looked up Secrets Capri... and within Budget I can get 7 nights with wedding and airfare to there. Which is fabulous. I'm a little concerned about the beach... but that seems to be the case with all the resorts as a result of the hurricanes.
I was thinking of November of this year... but
I liked Secrets Maroma A LOT. If they really open in March 08. It might be play to wait till then, save up some extra $$ and go there in late April/early May.
Didn't really see much else... I wasn't entirely comfortable with the Sandals resorts reviews I read... this planning has already been a nightmare... don't want more headaches. No more military precision planning. I can obviously up the budget a bit... which I may opt to do. 10K would work with Grand Velas. Hmm... especially if we did THAT in March/April. (Family $$ wouldn't be contributed to an 'elopement'... funds only available for the big wedding horror).
cruisinred-- thank you for the auction links! They looked intriuging.
My fiance (DF) wanted a cruise... or at least the convenience of cruise style vacation. We decided to give a high end all-inclusive a try. He REALLY doesn't want to worry about $$ for food, or well, anything on our wedding/ honeymoon.
But, no a non-AI would not be a deal breaker... but it would be a tough sell.
I just found (pardon me if this a newbie find, I'm new to this whole vacation sleuthing thing) that certain airlines-- like alaska airlines have hotel and air package rates MUCH lower than those posted on the Grand Velas site. For 6 nights, including airfare... almost a 1500 savings over the JUST accomodation rate on the Grand Velas site. Which plunges it right back into affordable!
That and the new Secrets opening in 2008 are my front runners. I noticed that last year Luxury Link had an auction for Grand Velas... so I will DEFINITELY keep my eye out for that!!!
We just want to have our wedding and honeymoon all at once. One place... 7 days would be fabulous for it all. We would have to get there in the middle of the week... so on Wednesday so that we can be married on a Friday. But that's about it.
THANK YOU ALL so MUCH for your help. You've been really helpful.
Of course... any non-AI recommendations would be welcome... its nice to have a longer Auction look out list!!!
We went to El Careyes resort (www.elcareyesresort.com) on the Pacific Coast of Mexico (between Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo) for part of our honeymoon last November. We bought a package on Luxury link for about $1500 (approx half price) for5 nights. It was not all inclusve though.
We had a great relaxing time. Nice beach in a sheltered cove, about 100 people at most at the resort (though I only saw about 20 people), great staff (most didn't speak much English though, and we don't speak much Spanish), nice pool, plenty of activities (diving etc) if you're interested. Beautiful spot on the beach for small wedding or romantic dinners. Our room was right near the beach with a private plunge pool. The food was good, but I have had better, having said that we aren't too adventurous foodwise so some more exotic things don't appeal to us.
I can't remember how much the flights cost us but I don't think they would be too expensive, but we had to catch a taxi for about an hour from Barra de Navidad to get there. The resort may be able to arrange slighlty nicer transport for you?
Message Edited by grantcaffin on 01-27-200711:37 PM