Sunday, June 21, 2009

Casa Ybel Resort Preferred Vendor List

There is a lot of controversy and confusion out there with regard to resorts the their Preferred Vendor Lists. The honest truth about these lists is: Brides Beware!! A lot of resorts do base their lists on one simple fact: The Vendors pay to be on it. Now this is not to say that means the vendors on those lists are bad in any way, in fact they may just be fantastic, however this is just a cautionary warning for all brides to be to check the facts!!

For more details with regard to this, check out Kelly McWilliams, Owner of Weddings by Socialites, and one of our Preferred Vendors, GREAT blog post!!

The reason I am posting this is because I want to clear up any confusion with regard to Casa Ybel Resort's vendor list. A lot of brides recently have been asking about our list and our vendors, their qualifications, etc. This makes me enormously happy because it means brides are paying attention and doing the research. This is the BEST thing you can do to ensure you love all of the vendors on your special day.

I want to let our brides, and potential brides know, ours is NOT a paid vendor list. We believe that vendors should be recommended based on the quality of their work, not whether they can give us a check for every referral. We at Casa Ybel Resort deeply care about our brides and their satisfaction, and do everything in our power to steer them in the right direction in order to have a perfect day. The vendors on our list are ones we have worked with a great deal, we trust and have the utmost respect for, have seen happy clients time and time again, and they know our property inside and out!!

The majority of our weddings are destination weddings, and we provide this list as we understand planning a wedding from so far away is really difficult. It is hard to know who to trust and nerve racking to know whether you are getting a quality product. You are, of course, not required to use all vendors from our list; it is a guideline to help you find those we trust and have worked with the most. However, I will say, if you choose to hire a vendor outside of the list, DO YOUR HOMEWORK!! Ask for referrals, check them out on the web for reviews, check to see if they are licensed and insured professionals, etc. The best thing you can do is be prepared, and truly know your vendor before you hire them. You have to feel comfortable with them, regardless of whether you hire them on your own, or go off of Casa Ybel's list.

One of the best things I believe a bride can do for themselves to ensure everything will be perfect for them, and each vendor they hire will please them, is to work with a Professional Personal Wedding Planner. There are many fantastic planners in the area, and they make things so much easier on you, especially with a destination wedding. Chances are, they have worked with just about every vendor in the area, know the good, the bad, and the ugly, and will be your biggest advocate!! A lot of times, they also have great relationships with the vendors, and can work discounts to help your budget as well. Each bride I have seen who hired a good wedding planner was relaxed, happy, and completely content on their wedding day, which is exactly the goal of every wedding professional for you.

Regardless of whether you work with a Professional Wedding Planner, or go it alone, do yourself the favor of really researching everyone before you sign a contract. This is your special day, and you don't get a do-over!!

Wedding "Upgrades"

As you can see from our website, and as our currently booked brides know, one of the greatest things about our full wedding packages is that they are pretty all-inclusive. Our full packages include:

Ceremony Site with Chairs

Reception Space

White House Linen and Napery

Flatware, Glass Ware

Butler Passed Hors' Dourves

Buffet or Plated Meal

Wedding Cake

Champagne Toast

3 Hour Open Bar

This is great, because it is all included in one price, which is not something you find at every resort. There are no separate ceremony site fees, room rental fees, etc. when you have our full wedding package, so you can see up front what you are getting! Aside from your outside vendors, and decor items, we provide it! We also have a lot of options for decor that we can provide for a minimal cost, which always helps.

However, with that said, one of the questions I am asked most frequently is:

"Since your package is so inclusive, what "upgrades" do I really need to consider, or is it fine to just go with what is included?"

I would like to take this opportunity to answer this for all of our readers, both currently booked brides, brides considering us, or brides simply reading for advice or design ideas! While there are a great deal of items included in our package, it does not include decor at all, and that is pretty big at your wedding! Regardless of how simple, or extraordinary you want your wedding to be, there are little things I can recommend that GREATLY increase the beauty of your wedding, as well as the comfort of your guests, and the overall great time they can have!!

The following are my top two recommendations...

Number one, first and foremost, (if it is workable with your budget), I always recommend upgrading the linen. This is not for all brides of course, and may not be in your budget, but if you can, it is one of the little things you can do that will have such a large impact on the overall look of the reception space. Even something as simple as a napkin with color to tie in your centerpieces can make a drastic difference in the space. The white linen included in the package is fine, but very simple, and adding an overlay, or napkin can really make a large difference in the overall look. Keep in mind as well, with any venue, the chairs in the room may not match your decor, so find out ahead of time what type of chairs you are dealing with, as you may want to cover them. There are some lovely options for chair covers nowadays, that really add a sophisticated touch to the room.

Below are some examples of weddings with and without the linen. While both are of course BEAUTIFUL in there own right, this helps you see, for your own taste, which looks right for YOUR wedding.
Waterfront Room, White House Linen, No Chair Covers

Waterfront Room, White House Linen, No Chair Covers

Tented Wedding, White House Linen, No chair Covers

Waterfront Room, Upgraded Floor Length Linen, Traditional Chair Covers with Sashes

Tented Wedding, Upgraded Overlays and Napkins, Gold Chivari Chairs with Sashes

Waterfront Room Wedding, Upgraded Floor Length Linen, Satin "Pillowcase" Chair Covers

All of these weddings are lovely, and perfect for the individual, but you can see the drastic difference between the styles. Hopefully this helps you decide which look you would like for your own special day!! We can provide just about any type of linen you can dream of...just let me know what you are interested in, and I will help you from there!

Another upgrade I ALWAYS recommend is a Water/Lemonade station at the ceremony. This can be super cute, and so functional. Trust me, your guests WILL thank you, especially if it is a summer wedding! Florida is hot and humid and while the guests are waiting for the ceremony to begin, there is nothing better than being able to enjoy an ice cold bottle of water, or glass of tasty lemonade with fresh raspberries. We do these stations all the time, and they are a BIG hit with the guests!!

We have a great deal of other options for upgrades, such as arches, cake stands, candy stations, gourmet popcorn tables, Late Night Treat Stations, Signature Drinks, Ice Sculptures...this list goes on and on!! There are endless possibilities for things you can do at your wedding to make it memorable, unique, and perfect for you! We can provide just about anything you can dream of, and if we can't, we can help you find the wedding professional who can!!

Just contact us with any questions or ideas you may have for your special day, and we will do everything in our power to make it happen!

Happy Planning!!

Friday, June 5, 2009

May Wedding Wrap Up

May is usually the busiest wedding month of the year for us at Casa Ybel, and this year was no exception! The last couple of weeks were just fantastic, and we wrapped up our Spring Season with some spectacular weddings! The last weekend was particularly wonderful and emotional for me, as the couples were some of the clients I have worked with the longest and we developed close relationships. A great deal of time, intense planning, and emotion went into planning these weddings, but the results were simply spectacular! Each and every wedding that finished off our Spring Season was purely romantic, classic, stunning, and perfect in every way for our wonderful clients. I am sad to no longer be working with these amazing people, but wish them the best of luck in their futures together, and am so proud to have been able to help them achieve their dream weddings! I would like to extend my whole hearted congratulations to our newest newlyweds!!
Mr. and Mrs. Jusek
Mr. and Mrs. Altman
Mr. and Mrs. Vanadia
Mr. and Mrs. Hemphil
Mr. and Mrs. Stark
Mr. and Mrs. Rowley
Mr. and Mrs. Mayes
Here are some highlights from this spectacular season!!

Happy Bride and Groom in front of Thistle Lodge
Eric Luther Photography

Happy Party in Waterfront Room

Eric Luther Photography

Super Unique and Gorgeous Palm Centerpiece
(Non-Professional Shot)
Incredible cake by Masons Bakery
(Non-Professional Shot)
Incredible Elegant Wedding In Waterfront Room
Centerpieces created by Floral Artistry
(Non-Professional Shot)

Gorgeous Tented ReceptionAlign Center

Floral Done by Sue Totterdale

(Non-Professional Shot)


Eric Luther Photography

Breathtaking Floral Artistry Centerpieces

(Non-Professional Shot)

Adorable Golf cart "send off"

(Non-Professional Shot)

Amazing Table Numbers

Eric Luther Photography

Truly Unique Cake, from Masons Bakery

Eric Luther Photography

Eric Luther Photography

Gorgeous and unique bridesmaids "bouquet" fans

Created by Floral Artistry

(Non-Professional Shot)

Bridal Party on Beach

Eric Luther Photography

Beautiful tent reception with elegant red linen and gold chivari chairs

Floral done by Sue Totterdale

(Non-Professional Shot)

The most beautiful peonie bouquet I have ever seen, by Floral Artistry

(Non-Professional Shot)

Beautiful Cake from Masons Bakery

Stuart Rosenthal Photography

Gorgeous table from Tented Wedding.

Florals and Decor by Sue Totterdale, Florida Weddings On-Line

Stuart Rosenthal Photography

Sweetheart table Floral (Sue Totterdale)

Stuart Rosenthal Photography

Stunning Beach Ceremony

Arch and Decor by Sue Totterdale

Stuart Rosenthal Photography