Hard Rock Cancun Grand Opening

By: Tracey Manailescu

We have just gotten back from beautiful Cancun, Mexico.  Danielle and I were invited to the grand opening of Hard Rock Cancun.  Wow!  What an amazing time we had!

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

We seriously were treated, and lived, like rock stars while we were there.  BTW, we have a newfound respect for those peeps who can party all night, and get up and do it all over again for days on end. (We sure gave it a good try, though…)

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

We arrived on Thursday afternoon and the festivities started that very evening.

Pinktober Fashion Show, auction & Cocktail on the Sunset Terrace featuring Juanras (it was a pink & white dress code).  What a stunning set up, and beautiful clothing from top Mexican designers.  Tons of drinks, food stations and passed hors d’oeuvres:

Tracey with the Pinktober car

 

Tracey “Kissing” it up!

 

Tracey on the pink carpet

Danielle at the Pinktober Fashion Show

Gina Tsirmpas, Director of Sales, Meetings & Incentives – Canada for Hard Rock, Tracey Manailescu, Sylvia of Event Simple and Lise, a travel agent in Montreal

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

Flo Rida concert on the beach under a tent with lounge furniture and mobile bars everywhere (Staff were always on hand to order drinks from, too!):

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

 

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

 

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

This was the infamous grand opening “Guitar Smash” ceremony.

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

Then there was the amazing Goo Goo Dolls concert (we were right up at the front standing-room-only for this entire concert):

Danielle at the Goo Goo Dolls concert

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

Believe it or not, we then went to the VIP After Party with DJ Aliyo where we danced, drank and ate our hearts out in the Rock & Roll Ballroom:

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

Danielle with Wilmer Valderrama

Gina Tsirmpas and I at the after party.

The last day was a pool party with DJ Dhanai and host, Wilmer Valderrama (who you may remember as FEZ from “That 70’s Show” or “Handy Manny” if you have kids) and a farewell BBQ with steak and lobster…For real!

Wilmer Valderrama Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

 

Photo courtesy of: Hard Rock Hotel Cancun

*Photo courtesy of Gina Tsirmpas, pictured above with Flo Rida, Director of Sales, Meetings & Incentives – Canada.

Gina, thank you so much for inviting us.  You are unbelievable! Your dedication and passion is contagious, and you do it with a great big smile. You make the planning process that much more enjoyable. We look forward to working with you closely on our 8th annual Wedding Professionals Conference in November of 2013. www.weddingconf.com

A HUGE thank you to all of the wonderful staff and management that made this event happen.  Really and truly, the staff at the resort are amazing!  Very customer-based.  So many times they went out of their way to make our stay enjoyable. Bartenders, servers, cleaning staff, entertainment staff and management; Thank you!

**All photos taken by Tracey Manailescu or Danielle Andrews Sunkel, unless otherwise mentioned.

 

When in Rome..Fun Things to Do on Your Honeymoon

Photo: Taken by me (Tracey Manailescu)

Rent a scooter:

For the brave at heart only!  Seriously…If you have previous experience driving through Italy then you know what I am talking about. Drivers will drive on the sidewalks, straight at pedestrians and other vehicles on the wrong side of the street, cut you off and flip you the finger if you get in their way or dare to defend yourself. You can drive a scooter up to 125cc with no motorcycle license required.  *Anything 150cc and up does  requires a valid motorcycle license.  To rent a scooter, you must be over eighteen and hold a valid driver’s license. All major credit cards are accepted as well as cash. Helmets, insurance and bike locks are usually included with your fee and GPS navigation devices can be rented at an additional cost. (Ask if you are unsure).  Take a scheduled tour from the rental company such as what they have at Bicibaci.com (They have over 10 amazing ones to choose from!)

*For the first time or those a bit timid, try renting a scooter on a Sunday when it is way less crowded.  You will see mostly tourists out and about, or in the evenings during the week.  We couldn’t believe the difference with the traffic and crowds on Sundays.

Sketch Artist (Have a Sketch Drawn of you and your Honey):

Caricature Artist near Fontana Trevi

Making Limoncello and Orangello

By: Tracey Manailescu

Want a great idea for something to do as a couple? Why not make your very own batch of limoncello? (Heck, we went so far as to make that and orangello, too!)  It takes 5 weeks for the recipe that is in this article.  Boy, oh boy!  Was it worth it, though!!!

Why on earth would you want to make it, when you can hop over to the LCBO and buy some?  Well, for starters, you can tell people you made it from scratch and they will be really impressed.  Even more so after they taste it.  Some things always taste better when made with love, and if you make it together, it is 😉

Serve it at your next dinner party, girls’ nigh,t or movie night cuddled up on the couch with a cozy blanket together.

This is the recipe we used:

Make this now…and be enjoying some with friends by the 4th of July…cheers!

The Best Limoncello is Homemade Limoncello!

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Yield: Approximately 9 cups; or about 8 bottles.

1-2 ozs

 

Limoncello Recipe from Creative Culinary 

Ingredients

  • 12 organic lemons
  • 1.75 liter bottle of 100-proof vodka, divided
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar

Preparation

  1. Wash the lemons well with soapy water, rinse and dry.
  2. Remove the yellow part of the lemon peel with a sharp peeler being careful to avoid any of bitter white pith. If any pith remains on the back of a strip of peel, scrape it off with a sharp knife.
  3. Put the yellow peels in a jar or bottle, add half of the vodka and seal tightly. Leave the bottle to steep until the peels lose their color, at least 2 weeks.
  4. Combine one cup of the water all of the sugar in a saucepan and heat on medium high just until the sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, add one cup of ice cold water and let the mixture completely cool.
  5. Strain the vodka from the peels. I strain mine by wrapping some cheesecloth under a metal strainer and pouring through both; that will remove the large peels and any smaller particles. Once strained, add the remaining vodka and the syrup.
  6. Put the liqueur in bottles, seal tightly and store for at least 1 week before using.
  7. For drinking straight, store the Limoncello in the freezer.

Notes

Prep time does not include the time required to age the finished product.

Wedding Shoes That Dreams are Made of…

By: Tracey Manailescu

My name is Tracey Manailescu…and I have a shoe fetish.  Always have, and I probably always will!  Shoes make me happy!  Shoes make me giddy!  The shoes I am wearing, give me confidence when I am nervous.

What do you think of these beauties for your wedding day, engagement party , bridal shower or bachelorette party? (They can apply to any.)  Give your wedding day a boost by infusing YOU into your wardrobe from head to toe.  Bring out your wild side!  Come on, I dare you. Imagine any of these in your photos!

Warning:  Some of these babies will set you back a bit (understatement), but come on!  They are so worth it!

Ferragamo

Steve Madden

Jimmy Choo

Jimmy Choo

Jimmy Choo

Jessica Valentine

Valentino

Prisela

Diane von Furstenberg

Giuseppe Zanotti

Christian Louboutin

Figgie

Le Silla

D Squared 2

Colin Cowie’s Wedding Collection for Hard Rock Hotels

By: Tracey M Events

Attention couples:

If you follow us on Twitter or FaceBook, then you already know that we were in Dominican Republic last week at the Hard Rock Punta Cana.   This is a HUGE resort full of tastes to suit any couple. Romantic, silly, wild or family focused.  They have it all!

The wedding department at Hard Rock Punta Cana are a fab group of professionals, who I now know personally.  I am proud to say they are a part of WPIC and the WPIC Alumni Association.  This makes it SO-O-O much easier when we are working together for a destination wedding.  I really believe it takes teamwork to make a wedding successful. Respect between the vendors throughout the wedding planning process, only helps everyone involved do their best for you. I had a great wedding site inspection around the property where I got to see the prime ceremony and reception sites.  *There are plenty of choices and back-up plans in case it rains.

You can have your very own Rock Star wedding designed by the infamous wedding designer extraordinaire, Colin Cowie.  He is the designer for 9 wedding collections.

Check them out (*All photos with Colin Cowie wedding pkgs. are courtesy of Hard Rock Punta Cana Hotel):

El Sol

Insignia

Metallic Dunes

Purple Shimmer

Rocker Chic

Sea Galss

White Rosette

Compliments of Hard Rock

Elegant Ivory

For pricing and what is included in each of the above, please click here.  Hard Rock also has some pretty cool planning tools and optional services.  You also need to view their wedding guidelines.

Tracey on Canada.com About Destination Weddings

Tracey Manaielscu of WPIC and Tracey M Events.

Tracey Manaielscu of WPIC and Tracey M Events.

Destination weddings are hot, with brides opting out of big hometown ceremonies and receptions in favour of tropical getaways surrounded by only their family and closest friends. If you’re thinking about a destination wedding, talk to our experts before you book. Tracey Manailescu is vice-president of the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada and Jennifer Borgh is a travel agent and destination wedding planner. Do destination weddings really cost less? How do you break the news to Mom that you’d rather get married in Cuba than at the local banquet hall? And which destinations offer the right settings for you? Tracey and Jennifer have all the answers and money-saving tips — join our discussion, Monday at 1 p.m. ET.

To view the entire live chat click here.

Heart Shaped Wedding Sparklers

Oh my gosh! How stinking cute are these heart shaped wedding sparklers from Say Anything Design?!?!

72 in each order, and they last for about a minute each. These could be used as a send off for the happy couple, during the vows for the guests to be involved or even on top of the bridal cake at a shower or on the wedding cake. Get creative!

*Just an FYI that these can’t be shipped out of the US