Friday, June 12, 2009

Wedding Stories and Ratings: Getting Ready

*All pictures by Jeff & Lisa Photography unless otherwise noted.

Hotel for Preps: G Hotel by Waterfront
Peso Power: 5,500/suite/night with breakfast for 2 (promo rate)

It was the morning of May 23, 2009. Rogel and I woke up around 8am, and proceeded to have breakfast at the Cafe Noir of G Hotel. My friend Ice joined us, as well as my sister Jean, cousin Jeanie and Eric (who were also staying at G). We were all relaxed, enjoying the time before the preparations began.

Around 9am, Rogel and I went back to suite 502 and spent some time with our son Mari. My poor baby got a huge insect bite on his forehead the night before. Bed bugs, most likely.

He's still a happy baby though, always smiling.

The day before we had some problems with room assignments. We had gotten two suites, one for my preps and the other for Rogel's. We had requested suites that were next to each other. We also requested that they be in the 5th floor, so that's 501 and 502. When we checked in the day before the wedding, they told us they had long staying guests in one suite per floor, so they could only give us 502 and another suite on the 4th floor. So okay, we were fine with that. They said they were still cleaning the suite on the 4th floor, so we said we'll just get the key after we ate lunch.

When we got back to the hotel after eating lunch, they suddenly told us that the other suite assigned to us was now on the 2nd floor. We were surprised... we thought we had already been given the 4th floor suite? They said the one who was staying at the 4th floor suite suddenly extended their stay for another night.

Rogel got a little steamed about this, and I can understand 'coz we had already been given the 4th floor suite. But I told him to let it go, it's okay, it's not that big a hotel anyway so the rooms aren't really that far.

The convenience of two suites in one floor would've been super nice though.

We didn't have any problems with bringing in food as well. We had Chowking delivered to the hotel.

For the rate we got, I believe we still got a steal because their suite is nice and spacious.

It comfortably accommodated all our suppliers and most of my entourage during the preparations.

Pros: nice and spacious, good rate, can bring food
Cons: didn't accommodate our room requests, gave our 4th floor suite to someone else, my baby got a bug bite during the night

Rating for G Hotel: 7/10
Would I still book them if given a choice? With the rate we got, definitely yes.

The first to arrive among our suppliers were our coordinators. When they saw Rogel still there, they immediately shooed him to suite 201. And the preparations officially started.

OTD Coordinators: Rhona & Jets
Peso Power: Decided not to disclose the rate we got... please inquire directly from them if you'd like to avail their services.

Honestly, I love these two. I only got them for on-the-day coordination, but they've really given us the royal treatment. I'd like to enumerate some of the things they did for us before the wedding:

- They coordinated the meetings with our emcee and worked with her to produce a wonderful reception program.
- They did our reception layout, and it turned out perfect! They were really able to maximize the space at Ramon Magsaysay Hall.
- They coordinated with our caterer, and this is where I'm most thankful for. I gave them a free hand on choosing the best centerpieces for the tables, and honestly, I loved how everything turned out!

There are only a few of the things they did for us. Rhona even constantly reminded me to pass everything to them, telling me to relax and let them worry about stuff. They were the ones who contacted our suppliers of their call times and such.

On the day itself, they were constantly at hand, ready to assist with anything. Oh, and they even ironed my wedding dress! It had been boxed when we got it (the couturier's services did not include setting up a mannequin nor helping the bride dress up), and it got pretty wrinkled. I had rented a mannequin the night before, put the gown on it, and prayed that the wrinkles would straighten, haha.

I can say they're truly my lifesavers. We were able to relax and just enjoy our wedding because of them.

I'll continue my stories for now, but I'll definitely mention them again as the day goes on.

Pros: very organized, our lifesavers
Cons: none

Rating for Rhona & Jets: 10/10
Would I still book them if given a choice? Definitely YES.

Main HMUA: Angie & Ogie
Peso Power: We haggled for their old rate, so decided not to disclose again.

Angie & Ogie arrived at 10am on the dot. They were also the ones who did our hair and make up during my sister's wedding last year, so even without having a trial, we decided to book their services again. They're really good in their craft, and I really felt beautiful on my wedding day. My mom, sisters and cousin also loved their hair and make up.

I believe the pictures say it all. They were also fun to work with... my sister Jean and Ogie greeted each other like old friends, hehe.

Perhaps my only negative comment about them is that Ogie kept asking me why we chose Ramon Magsaysay Hall as our reception venue. He kept mentioning that there are so many other much nicer options out there. It's just not something I want to hear while preparing.

Pros: We all loved our hair and make up.
Cons: negative comments on our reception venue

Rating for Angie & Ogie: 9/10

Would I still book them if given a choice? Yes.

Second HMUA: Keiz Caballero
Peso Power: 850/head for 4 adult entourage, 500/head for 2 flower girls

Keiz and her team actually arrived earlier than Angie & Ogie, just a few minutes after Rhona & Jets arrived. I must admit I didn't really get to work with her personally... She immediately moved to suite 201 because it would've been crowded already in our suite if both she and Angie & Ogie stayed in one place.

I obtained her services based on the feedback I read in W@W. I thought everyone's hair and make up looked fine, but I'd like to include my entourage's comments on her services.

My friend Ice, the girl on the left in the 2nd picture, didn't like her make up that much. My friend Ross, the girl on the right in the 2nd picture didn't like her hair. She wanted it down and even told the one who did her hair to put it down, but Keiz's partner was insistent that Ross looked better with an updo. My aunt, the woman in red in the 3rd picture, loved her hair and make up, and even plans to hire Keiz for her daughter's wedding next year.

I feel though that I cannot give an accurate rating, so I'll just leave her rate blank. Just see the pictures above and decide for yourself.

While the girls and I were having our hair done, Rogel was also preparing in suite 201.

Groom's Barong: Onesimus
Peso Power: Around 2,800
Rating: 10/10

Rogel was actually planning to just use the barong his cousin's husband volunteered to lend him, but during our last week of preparations, while we were at the mall, my dad insisted that we should just buy something off the rack. So we ended up doing just that. Onesimus really has some fine choices. Rogel likes the jusi fabric 'coz it's not itchy.

Rogel's dad helped him dress. His dad is really big on traditions, and was really insistent that he be the one to assist Rogel on his wedding day. I only learned about this afterwards, but I couldn't help but think how sweet and poignant that was.

And just a few floors up, I was also being helped into my dress by my mom and sister, who was also my maid of honor.

Bridal and Entourage Gowns: Blanca of Plaridel in Angeles City
Peso Power: Around 50,000

I had posted before about how stressed I was by my couturier. But thank goodness all the gowns turned out fine, and in the end, I fell in love with my gown as well. It wasn't what I had had in mind, but when I put it on, it became the gown of my dreams.

I had thought I was ready at this time, but my petticoats kept showing... it was actually longer than my gown! Good thing Rhona was ready with double-sided tape and a pair of scissors... we were able to remedy my gown in no time. My lifesaver!

Though Blanca was such a stress to work with, I'm just so happy that all the gowns turned out beautifully.

Rating for Blanca: 8/10

And finally, we were on our way!

See you at the church!


Sheng said...

Hi sis, this is sheng from w@w. di ko nakita yung original design mo for your wedding gown. but you know what, i really love the gown you wore on your wedding day. it's so elegant. and it fits you well. kahit di nasunod yung gusto mo, the gown turned out really beautiful naman. =)

Helene said...

Hi Sheng! Thank you! =) I'm really super happy on how it turned out as well... never realized na okay pala yung sweetheart neckline sakin, hehe.

Stressful lang talaga yung interactions ko with the couturier... but seeing the end result makes it all worth it. =)

Thanks again!