I was very excited to attend the recent “wedding of the Year” at the sandals resort at the grand royal Bahamian in the Bahamas this past January.
There was sooooo much hype around this event, the organizer Kim, kept releasing clues and tid bits to keep us all in a frenzy in the private Facebook group page for Association of Bridal Consultant members. We all received a beautiful Save-the-Date in the mail which only heightened the excitement as usual FAM trips are just email blasts that go out, so the buzz kept going! The invitation arrived soon there after and it was the same palm leaf theme as the STD and just as lovely. There was a lot of chatted amongst attendees about who was getting married and where is was going to be. This went on for weeks leading up to the trip so once we all started leaving for the Bahamas it was pure excitement.
Once we landed in the Bahamas we were taken to the Sandals suite at the airport to wait for our transport to the resort. The quick 20 minute trip was awesome; the shuttle service was quick, clean and efficient.
Arrival at the Royal Bahamian was amazing as every other sandals resort I have visited. Hot towels for your hands and a cool cocktail! The check in process was a little hectic, large groups of people arriving seemed to throw a kink in the normally smooth check in process, but they worked it out as quickly as they could. My room was average, nothing spectacular. The AC didn’t work well and I called several times about getting it looked at, not sure if anyone ever came, but the day I left it was still not working. There was a cute plate of little sweets left for me along with a welcome letter, map of the resort and itinerary…very helpful!
The staff is always amazing, they are courteous and friendly. The food was basic, nothing special. The bar is always good…their specialty cocktails are always on point.
The first evening the welcome reception on the beach was awesome; interactive bars, live music and yummy food was a mock cocktail party leading up to a poolside reception. The warm purple glow of the lights kept the mood festive and fun.
The next afternoon we had a garden party mock reception that was a similar theme of the wedding invitations we received. Large palm leaves decorated the tables and a green motif fit perfectly in the garden.
The following afternoon we headed indoors for a brunch reception; breakfast food and cocktails…yes! The blue beachy theme was lovely and tied well into the bars with cute anchored patterns.
Then the waiting was over…the wedding of the year had arrived! There was so much talk all over the resort on the morning of the wedding because the weather looked very iffy. Staff could be seen scurrying around trying to figure out the best place the for the festivities that was originally to be on the beach. We received work the ceremony was going to be held in the gardens at 4pm. We were all so excited to see who it would be! When I saw it was our fearless leader Jackie and her hubby Daryl renewing their vows, I couldn’t contain myself! The wait was over and it was so worth it! Once the ceremony was over, we were led into the reception by a traditional Junkanoo band that really kicked off the party! The indoor cocktail reception was filled with live music, delish food and sweet cocktails. When that was over we were ushered into the reception room that was mind blowing. The warm gold lightening set the perfect mood for a yummy buffet dinner of foods from around the world. Toasts and tears and laughs were exchanged for the happy couple in true wedding reception style. They we headed into the dance are of the reception. This is a European set up for receptions where the dinner and dancing are held in separate spaces. Its one of my favorite configurations for a wedding; giving the host the opportunity to create more experiences for their guests and Sandals didn’t disappoint. In this final room the DJ was playing and the cake and desserts were displayed…and we danced the night away!
All in all this was a great experience. Its rare when a wedding planner gets to be a part of an event and recount it for their clients. And if clients want to go to Sandals for a vow renewal or wedding…I can honestly say they will be blown away with what Sandals has to offer.
The networking at the resort during our down time was great. Meeting other planners and wedding pros from different parts of the US is always great. We chat about growing pains and share ideas and in general try to help each other. Networking is key to growing your business and its encouraged on these FAM trips.
This was my 6th FAM trip and by far my favorite, I wish they were all like this! Not only were we introduced to a new brand that Sandals is rolling out for their weddings & vow-renewals, but we learned about new incentives and ways to grow our businesses, marketing techniques and how other wedding pros are successfully selling Sandals to their clients. I am hoping to sell a destination wedding at a Sandals property soon!
This was an awesome trip and I was not only thankful to be a part of the experience but blessed to be in the presence of love by the couple renewing their vows!
Check out their website for all of the details…and hit us up if you wanna plan a trip!
Best wishes & happy planning ~
Melissa @ Events by Missy & Company