This beautiful place is where we chose to hold our intimate wedding. My review will be focused mainly on the services provided for our wedding.
For an intimate wedding with around 24 people (including the bride and the groom and the photographer), this place is perfect. We booked the chapel for our civil ceremony, and then one of the beautiful salons for cocktail, and then the dinning room for our wedding dinner.
Initially, a staff has shown us different areas of the hotel during our first visit. He was friendly and gave us a few useful suggestions, since we had no idea how to plan our wedding.
Then we proceeded to contact the event planner through e-mail and phone, but we were actually not very satisfied, as we had to contact her a few times and she didn't seem to care about us. She promised to send an e-mail with information before some given time, but then she failed to do it a few times, and then she'd say that there were important things to take care of and was busy. Funny is, before we could finally confirm our reservation for our wedding, she even went on holidays and didn't say anything to us! I've found it quite insulting, and was almost ready to give this hotel up. But then, we were contacted by another event planner soon. He was more caring, and we could finally advance with the reservations and the details.
For the past few months, we have exchanged a few e-mails to discuss about the options and the details. He was caring, although he seemed to forget about what we wanted a few times (like which salon we wanted and a few other details).
There was a test dinner for us, to see if we will like the dinner menu for our wedding. The dinner was really great, as expected of an hotel of such level. We actually didn't know about the dress code, so we went there with jeans and sneakers, but we didn't feel judged or anything, as the staff was friendly and caring.
At the wedding day, me and my mother were preparing ourselves with our hair and makeup professionals in the suite in which me and my husband stayed for the night. The suit was nice, and we've got to take many nice photos with our photographer during our preparation (can't wait for the photos)!
After our ceremony, we've got our petals and rice rain right outside the chapel. We took group photos, and then the event planner helped us guide the guests to the cocktail salon, while me and my husband proceeded to take some more photos around this beautiful hotel. This hotel is just amazingly beautiful, a great place for a romantic, fairytale kind of wedding!
After taking some photos, we went to the cocktail room too. The guests were enjoying the cocktail food, which was nice. After a while, we've proceeded to the champagne and cake (we wanted it at the cocktail time since after dinner would be too late for some guests). And here is something that actually shocked me - the cake was not really what I've asked for! The cake I've actually asked them to make was a two level one, with each level being a heart shape, with pink color and white cream decoration. They made the cake with the right form, but the colors were exchanged. Also, I've told them that it's ok to change some of the cream decorations to simpler ones (they have said that the ones on the cake I've asked for was a bit too complex), but then they've proceeded to make some ocean star looking flowers around the lowest level, which I didn't find them very matching nor pretty. But the cake was still acceptable, and it's not a big deal to worry too much about it.
After a while, we have proceeded to the dinning room. It was the perfect place for an intimate but grand dinner. We have delayed the dinner for almost an hour before proceeding to the dinning room. I think that as a result of this delay, our soup food came in a bit cold. The soup came in warm if not already cold, which affected the taste of it. And then, the service was also a bit slow, with long time of waiting between the dishes. Also, the dishes' quality was also slightly inferior to the ones we've tried during the test dinner, which was slightly a disappointment. I've asked a replacement plate for one of my mother's dishes, since she can't eat beef, but it was almost forgotten and we had to remind the staff for that.
They have apologized for some of the delays, and they also asked for me and my husband's opinions. We've told them about this, and they were nice and took our opinions into consideration. Later, they also told us that we didn't have to pay for the extra hours, maybe to make up for this.
In the end, the wedding went very well, and the suite room for me and my husband was nice and comfortable. It was a very special and memorable day, and Pestana Palace Hotel, aside of a few details of the service (but they were still friendly and caring), was the perfect place for our wedding. I can't wait for the photos of our photographer, they must be awesome, since they are taken in such a superbly beautiful place!