Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! My husband and I got married on the Grand Nov. 12th of this year. We decided to get married at sea rather than at home and narrowed our list down to 12 family members and friends. We could have had a wedding in NJ for 100 people for what the week cost but we made the right decision in having a small wedding at sea. We purchased the Emerald package for $1800 and a cocktail reception after that was to include open bar,hors deurves, a pianist and time to relax before our dinner reservations at Sabatinis at 6pm. The price was $28 pp, $80 for the pianist and I am unsure of the extras (shrimp cocktails, choc.strawberries).
The Grand left on Sunday the 11th and we were to get married at sea the 13th. Due to the hurricane the week before when we arrived in our room we were surprised to find out that we were getting married the next day because we were bypassing Princess Cays and would be at sea on Monday. My well thought out wedding favor of wind chimes with our wedding date was now wrong, but heck you cant complain about mother nature. We meet with Astrid the wedding coordinator on Sunday at 5pm where she went over a checklist about how the ceremony was to proceed. Neither one of us mentioned the reception after and I just thought that Princess had it all taken care of.
At 1:50 the escort came to our cabin to get me and my sister. The wedding chapel was beautiful with flowers and candles. Captain David Christy was wonderful!!! We choose rather long vows which were hard for us to get through being that we cried through them. NOT a dry eye in the house!! After the ceremony you are moved to a table where you sign your wedding documents. Photos are taken throughout the ceremony. The weather was rainy so we took photos at other locations on the ship. When we were finished we went to meet up with our guests who were in the Promenade area having drinks. I asked the photographer where my reception was and she knew nothing of it. She got Astrid the wedding coordinator who came down right away and apologized but she never received the paperwork from the California wedding coordinator and did say to me that we went over everything the day before. Well we did go over the ceremony but I do not know their protocol and it was NOT MY FAULT that they screwed up.
I was embarrassed to find out that my guests were asked for their cruise cards when they ordered what they thought were our reception drinks! Astrid took the drinks off of my guests bill and gave us 1 hour of drinks in the Promenade area and sent over a tray of some "kind of food????"
Our wedding was at 2pm and I told everyone not to eat lunch because we would be having a cocktail reception and a large dinner. Everyone was hungry waiting for 6pm to roll around.
The wedding coordinator from CA sent us a bottle of wine apologizing for her error. I was very disappointed in how our very special day turned out.
They could have picked up our dinner tab at Sabatinis rather than send a stinkin bottle of wine.
The cake that was included in the package was inedible. It was brought to Sabatinis but we did not eat it (too full) and it was delivered to our cabin.
My husband tasted it the next day and we put a "THROW OUT" garbage sign on it so our cabin steward knew to trash it.
Be careful of the photo package! Included in the package was I believe 4 8x10's, and some 5x7's. We were handed a lot of photos and the price list. It was 10:45 pm on Wednesday night and we were tired. After going through some of them the photo guy said the negatives are $495 or you can have all the pics and negatives for $650, so we bought the package.
Disappointed that we had at least 20 of the same photo (group photo), and many many duplicates, not one or two, but sometimes 6 of the same picture. Our video arrived last week and all it is of my husband and I. My sister and my husbands best man walked in before my dad and I and they didn't even have them coming into the chapel. It did not show any of our guests, just my husband and I. Thank goodness my brother in law videotaped the wedding otherwise we would have just had the Princess tape. My thinking is that if you bring guests on board the video editor should include the guests that are in the chapel.
Besides not having a reception, the cake, video and the photo rip off the ceremony was beautiful. I wrote to Princess and have not heard back from them yet. I only wrote to them about the reception, because that is what went terribly wrong and I would have easily forgotten about the other dissatisfied parts of our day if they made it "right" that day, NOV. 12th. I did have numerous conversations with the wedding planner in CA before we sailed. So my advise would be to have your own checklist to go over and bring it with you to the meeting. The ceremony was beautiful and tastefully done. If you have any questions please feel free to email me.