Sunday, September 10, 2017

Custom Build Your Wedding "package" in a Mexico Private Venue: Easy Steps To Do So

Congratulations amigos. You are on your way to wedding planning in Mexico bliss. You found the most perfectly located private large beach garden in Banderas Bay. Now it is time to learn how to create your wedding with
Martoca Beach Garden (only 20 minutes from all hotspots in the Banderas bay is the only stand alone (Non Villa or resort) locations available to rent for creating an original customized wedding in the Vallarta or Bucerias area. Most other locations are either hotels or villas that make you rent their rooms. So you found the perfect location. Now what? Well, we need to build your wedding proposal or “wedding package”. So you need to do your pre-checklist and then a checklist for your wedding services. For a pre-checklist, please visit the next post here in this blog where we discuss this in detail. I am assuming you have a budget, location, date, guest count and over all style in mind, this is the pre-checklist, so now we need a checklist for the actual services you will need in your wedding.
Popular Wedding Services that our couples enjoy in their weddings are varied. They depend on their budget and guest count and style. Even the date plays a role; For example you would not have a tent necessarily in March however in June you are more likely to have to have a tent. Like this example there are many others as to what services you may need or want in your wedding. Here is a list of the most requested services and items or vendors you can request for your original custom wedding in Martoca Beach Garden. Remember since we are not a hotel; So, we do not have so many restrictions and we do not have a large staff so we subcontract many services from local vendors. Therefore you are much more free to choose vendors of your liking.
Below is a list of the most (not all) requested services for Mexico weddings when you have a private wedding venue location:
Wedding planner
Make-up and/or Hair Stylist
Bridal party florals
Welcome pergola (hostess area and table assignment)
Welcome drinks and snacks
Cocktail lounge with his and her drinks
Passed Apps in Lounge
Open Bar unlimited
Entertainment Music and Shows ( Mariachi or live band for the dancing or other shows like fire dancers)
Decorations of all kinds (ceremony, tables, venue, lighting, flower walls, souvenirs, etc)
Dance Floor
Taco Stand
Churro Stand
Coffee Stand
When we create your wedding, we will basically select the “must have” services from this list according to your taste and budget. Some items and services are unavoidable such as venue and wedding planner and decor of some sort. As well as catering and bar services. Usually a ceremony is requested as well. After confirming your must have services (more on this in other posts here on this blog) you then may proceed to add to your list of services and make your wedding more fun and more decorated.
Like I mention a lot in our posts, it all depends on your taste and budget. The more budget you have to play with, the more services you will be able to include. If you need to cut back to adjust to  a tight budget, we of course would not recommend having a string quartet for example. Dj will do just fine. However, if you love Jazz and have the budget, then you probably will request a jazz band and a lot of fun vintage props. Does this make sense?
If you read my blog here which are full of insight, in all modesty, you know I like to include the following services for a basic wedding. I call them our 7 core items for a wedding. You want to spend about 70% on these 7 services. It is my 7 on 7 rule.  I have not seen many weddings in 7 years that did not include at least these following seven services:
Venue (lighting and accent props included)
Wedding Planner (included with our venue)
Welcome Pergola (hostess table assignment)
Ceremony (on beach or grass)
Cocktail Lounge (sofas on garden)
Catering and bar
DJ and Dance Floor
If you simply had the above services then you would have enough for a fun wedding that anyone would love and enjoy. Of course, all brides and want at least some entertainment like Mariachi band or fire dancers for example. Many need transportation. Some want hair and make up and bouquets assistance. Others need photographer and videographer. So there are many more services we may need. But at the very least I believe the above services will get you through the pinch if you have a tight budget. Just think of these 7 core services I listed above as a building base for your wedding pyramid.
I hope this helps you for planning and building your wedding. If you want our help just email me to and I would be happy to send you a proposal for the services you request. Just list the services you believe are a “must have” for your custom wedding and we will get to work on a quote for all the services and the venue. Remember to have a budget in mind and a guest count and a date in mind first.
We look forward to helping you create a magical Martoca Wedding amigos…

Saturday, August 26, 2017

In Search for Wedding Venue in Vallarta? This Pre-Wedding Checklist is a Must for You

Every bride (wedding planner) has a vendor checklist for their wedding day in Mexico; Bridal bouquet: Check. Photographer: Check. Timeline: Check. Catering: Check, and so on.  The list can include up to 20 or 30 vendors. However, most brides do not know about the pre-checklist that will save them time and stress. The list before the list if I may. Unknowingly they skip this step and then lose time by backtracking in the planning. What is the point of looking for vendors if you do not have a location first? Couples should have a list of factors ironed out before the actual wedding list is even in play in order to help brides figure out what to look for, and what they need to know to make their search more efficient and save time and reduce stress. The most important factors to consider in a pre-checklist are budget, guest count, location, date and wedding concept.

As it happens with most things in life, the budget limits our freedom. There is no sense looking at 5,000 dollar purses if you have 500USD to spend; OK sorry, bad example, my wife does that; I'm in trouble. But seriously, unless you are one of those lucky enough to spend whatever you like, you are like the rest of us who have a budget to follow. This does not mean you cannot have a wonderful "dream" wedding. It just means your wedding requirements needs to be aligned with your budget. In our experience in Martoca or in venues in Vallarta area, we have created weddings with 20,000USD and 60,000 USD budgets; However, these couples who had the weddings with us were equally happy with their wedding choice. The budget does not guarantee you happiness or a successful event. Realistic expectations and your disposition, attitude and creativity do. So do not worry, your wedding will still be a smash hit regardless of the budget; You just need to plan for it properly.
So first on your list is agreeing on a budget. This will help you identify what is affordable. In a way it is liberating because it will free you from tough choices. For example the guest count must be reduced if the budget is lower. Therefore, you can eliminate the annoying cousin you have not seen in years, and not feel bad about it. Other examples of what the budget will determine for you is if you can afford a private wedding or must go with a hotel wedding; How far you can fly to a destination wedding or what location is or is not an option. Budget decides if you can afford a Saturday wedding or must do it on a Wednesday to save money. Every major checklist item is determined by what budget you have available.
Once you have a budget in mind the next important factor on the list is the guest count. Depending on the guest count, you will know if you need a villa or cheap hotel or an independent venue with private deluxe condos surrounding the venue. The guest count and the type of guests will narrow down the options and help you in your search. A destination wedding of a good quality level with many fun features will require about 550 dollars per guest. It sounds like a lot but remember, you are inviting fewer guests. This is why the guest count is tied closely to your budget restriction.
For example, you may have 130 guest count in your mind, but if you have only enough for 50 guests then you must either cut the guest count, or upgrade the budget or change location and the date, or lower quality of services. It is all tied together. Usually 60% of guests invited to a destination wedding attend the actual ceremony. So do not be too worried to begin with 100 guests because usually the real number will be closer to 60 guests. If you need a quick estimate guide for a destination wedding budget 550 USD per guest is about average. So whether you begin with your budget and then arrive to a guest count, or begin with a guaranteed guest count and then arrive at a budget, you need to have both in your list. Remember you can always add guests later. The guest count you need to budget is the absolute guaranteed count or, the ones you know are coming for sure and must be accounted for in your budget.
Checklist item number three: Location. Your guest count and budget will both play a part in your location selection. Once you have a budget and guest list, then you will know who you must accommodate with travel access. For instance, if your great-grandma is non-negotiable for your guest list and she has a hard time traveling, then of course for her sake you will not choose to be married in Thailand; You need a short direct flight. Location selection depends on a subset of factors like flight times, direct flight, accessibility, cost of travel,  or even safety concerns for guests or length of stay for guests.
Once these factors are determined, you then must dive even deeper in detail when you determine the town or area in town you want. If most guests are young and adventurous you may do a more risky proposition. Something with night clubs or nature hiking. However, if your guests are older or more conservative in their entertainment, you may want more traditional or family oriented destination. Some guests need a hospital nearby or some do not like mud or 4 flights of stairs to go up to the villa. So location selection involves a macro and micro analysis. Have fun debating!
Once you have the first three factors under control, the next big factor is coming up with the wedding date. You must have a list of dates that are compatible with the following: Guest schedules and accommodations, vendor schedules, best weather patterns, hotel rates or flight rates among others. A good date selection will accommodate as many of these factors as possible as well as fit within budget. When you contact the venue or hotel have a few dates in mind. For example, a weekday date is less expensive than weekend and a low season date is less expensive than a high season date. So now we have tied the budget, guest count and location along with the date. The pre-checklist is almost complete. Bonus tip, plan a year out at least for venues in high demand areas if you must have a weekend.
The final yet very important decision that must be accounted for in your pre-checklist is a bit less technical: The overall concept for the wedding. When you consider all the other items on the list, their combination should lead to a decision on the type or style of wedding you are looking to create. International or national wedding. Beach or mountain. An outdoor wedding or indoor wedding. Hotel wedding or private garden or villa. Casual or elegant. Intimate custom wedding or large cookie cutter wedding. It all depends on your specific needs and of course budget. You will never make everyone happy. But in group travel you must think in general terms; You cannot please each and every person. You have to think about the majority of the group in all these decisions.
You now have a list of the main tools you need to begin an efficient search for a successful customized destination wedding. Other minor details will begin to emerge as you begin your search such as, if you want buffet or not, or live music or DJ. You will have to decide if you want a venue that just does everything for you, including the planning and design like ours, or if you want DIY and so on. However, you will solve them much easier now that you have the 5 basic core items in mind. These fundamental building blocks will lower the stress and confusion to a minimum so you can have a wonderful wedding within budget, no matter the location or what style you decide on.

Martoca James

Monday, June 26, 2017

Denver Broncos Cheer for this Puerto Vallarta Wedding in Martoca Beach Bucerias

The Denver Broncos Cheer for Christina and Jeremy’s Wedding in Bucerias, Mexico

We love creating custom weddings for all kinds of people and all countries. We
have hosted broadway and movie actors, rockstars, CEO’s, governors, business magnates, doctors and lawyers and sales reps and  students. But as a Broncos football fan that I am (NFL), I have to confess I had a bit extra excitement in my step for this wedding. I truly enjoyed hosting and creating this amazing fiesta for Christina and Jeremy. Christina was the captain for the Denver Broncos cheerleading team for a log time; So, it was a dream for us when she chose Martoca Beach Garden for her venue and our in-house Martoca Weddings team as her designer and planner staff; As we planned, we had a few trick plays in store for Christina!
First, in a process that took over 48 hours and 1,000 man hours, we wrapped her get structure with palm leaves and gave it a palapa look. Instead of just having white cloth covers. It would have maybe looked great at night but in the day time, our designer decided it was not good enough; So she decided to wrap the tubes with actual palm leaves! Amazing. It had never been done before. No one in town had seen this or anywhere else. But that is what happens in Martoca. We create. If the bride allows us freedom to do so, we deliver spectacular designs. Look at this transformation; From a normal tent into a marvelous lighting structure:

Then, after creating this amazing look you see above from scratch, we surprised Christina and the Broncos’ fans with ourMexican version of Thunder, the Broncos’ mascot.. And the crowd went wild!
Thirdly, although not our idea this time, the cheerleading team friends danced a routine for the bride and groom and there er fire dancers and fireworks and all kinds of fun stuff from then on. Take a look for yourself. I am not very good in describing weddings so I will just let the pictures describe the feelings and the scene. All I can tell you is that it was a wild ride! Go Broncos 🙂
Great night. Great new friends. We love our Martoca Weddings team and all our vendors. Martoca Beach Garden can host weddings that are this elaborate or something less spectacular; But we always have fun!
Go Broncos! Go Christina and Jeremy!
Martoca James