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   Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit   Mar 14, 2018
• We just returned from Grand Velas where we attended my sister's wedding. The resort itself is awesome, great rooms which are clean and spacious, the pool and dining options are fantastic. I really enjoyed the Italian and French restaurants quality of food, presentation and service. The wedding planner ANDREA was extraordinary, she was extremely professional, organized, patient and accommodating, she went out of her way to make sure my sister achieved the wedding of her dreams. I have to say though that we were extremely shocked to discover that almost all the services that had to be outsourced like photography, flowers etc came with a very hefty commission/surcharge added in by the resort in some cases two to three times the price for the same service when one sourced it privately by just looking online locally or taking a trip downtown to source flowers, this was very time consuming and unnecessary considering that we already paid a huge amount for the wedding package and brought in revenue with over 70 guests who stayed at the resort, they need to be transparent and fair about the surcharge added to external vendors and anything that is not within the wedding package. The venue is outstanding for a wedding but be prepared to pay through the roof if for example you just want to extend the reception by one hour ($400) and only one microphone for the ceremony as an additional one incurs a cost so we ended up with the one microphone being passed from minister to bridal couple - a bit messy - it really was exhausting all the extra charges which was beyond the wedding planning team's control but rather a policy from the resort. I have rated it less than five stars because although the service is good, there is a lack of genuine good service from a few of the waiters especially in Azul who at the beginning are not sure whether they will get a tip and only start to offer better service towards the end of the meal and especially good service if they hear that you are a good tipper - this I believe is a drawback of the hotel management and would encourage them to find a better solution to the whole tipping issue as we are told on arrival that gratuity is already included in the all inclusive package and we should only tip if we feel that the service exceeds expectations however one gets that silent feeling from a number of restaurant staff that it is expected whether they give you ordinary or extra ordinary service, one waiter even went as far as suggesting we tip him as he felt he did offer more than he should have. I must however mention that the service at the pool from all the barmen and Mario was great, The concierge Alejandro was amazing, attending to all our requests. Hector was incredibly helpful with all our packing after the wedding and handling of all our luggage. The waitress in koi nightclub was also exemplary with no overtures or expectations of an extra tip. The hairdresser was fantastic and the spa service, treatments, ambience and product selection are all world class but totally overpriced by any standard including outstanding award winning resorts in the Maldives or Seychelles where everything is expected to be alot more expensive as they are remote islands with no local production of even water. All in all, our huge group of family and friends 75 in total had a fabulous time, and I am sure many of them will go back albeit better informed.