Massachusetts-Boston

Do I need Day of coordinator if I'm getting married in a hotel?

Hey! I'm getting married at the Sheraton Boston (ceremony and reception are there) and as part of my package I have what they call a "personalized wedding consultant" who is supposed to coordinate with my vendors, etc.
I'm just not sure how much they do and if I need to hir my own Day of coordinator to take care of things.
Does anyone have experience with the hotel consultants?

Re: Do I need Day of coordinator if I'm getting married in a hotel?

  • edited December 2011
    I got married at a hotel. The hotel planner was lovely and she did a wonderful job, but her job was basically to make sure that we paid the necessary amount and that our event was carried out efficiently.  She didn't provide help with the organization of the day (all those finer points of planning like centerpieces and ceremony layout) and didn't keep track of the vendors (i.e. helping me find them, doing day-of work, etc).

     My wedding planner did those things and it was an immense help. In the weeks leading up to the event, vendors would call and email me wanting to talk about final details and I pointed all of them towards our wedding planner. She kept track of all of them, coordinating the day-of schedule (arrivals, the order vendors should come - don't want the flowers coming before the arbor was there! - etc.) She also took care of little issues like the zipper of one my bridesmaids' dresses breaking. The whole process of planning was pretty stress-free for me and having someone that could run around that day and do those last minute things was priceless.

    So, to make a long story short, I would definitely recommend having a day-of planner. :)
  • edited December 2011
    I don't think you *need* one but if you can afford to hire one, I'd also highly recommend it!  We also got married at a hotel and the coordinator was more to coordinate the food and the hotel staff.  We had our own DOC to be the point of contact for us, our family, and to keep us running on time.  It was wonderful and she took care of all the little details for us.  She made the day run so smoothly and that way I didn't have to think or stress about anything.  It was really great for me since we planned the wedding ourselves, so if there was a problem, we would have had to handle it.  Having our DOC she was the buffer and took care of a lot of small things so we didn't have to. 

    But it is an additional expense and if you do'nt have the budget for it, the hotel coordinator will probably be fine.  We had a friend who was getting into the business do it for us and she did it for a relatively low fee, otherwise we coudl not have afforded it.
  • edited December 2011
    I have to agree with the ladies above - if you can afford one, do it.  I was SO sure I didn't need one (I got married at a hotel) because I work in a very similar capacity to a wedding planner and am so organized, but the truth is, the day of, I wish I had had someone to deal with some headaches.  

    As weddings go, I am lucky there were no crises and none of it was a big deal, but our coordinator kept offering to help but she actually made things more stressful because she kept firing questions at me all day long on things that I really didn't want to be thinking about!!!  And then little things - I called down from my room while getting ready to take her up on her offer to help because I needed my aisle runner rolled out before the florist came to lay out some flower petals....her answer was she was busy with appointments.  I also asked her to put a few leftover hydrangea on top of the cake and when it was cake cutting time - she had taken creative license and put little flowers ALL OVER the cake without checking with me - not something I wanted AT ALL.  I think it would've been helpful, too, to have someone ensuring our photo time was a bit better managed.  

    All of these things are super trivial and our wedding was perfect, but looking back now,  I think it's worth it if you can afford it.  Try "Weddings and Calligraphy by Michelle B" - google her and her site comes up - she does calligraphy but is also a day of coordinator and based on my dealings with her for calligraphy I bet she's great.  And, I know her prices are reasonable.

    Good luck!
  • love2naplove2nap
    100 Comments
    member
    edited December 2011
    Honestly, I know your venue very well and I would say you don't need a day off coordinator unless you really want a wedding planner for beforehand and/or your doing really elaborate stuff. Your Catering Manager will ask for all your little details and organize it in an event order for you. You'll also have a Banquet Manager that will run the day of stuff and your catering manager will be there as well to help you! Your catering manager will get there early to set-up, meet vendors and do some last minute details and the banquet manager will run with the night. If you are looking to save some money, I would honestly not worry about it. You'll have at least two hotel managers there and a banquet captain.

    Typically, I find that hotel consultants are pretty good! They work a lot of weddings and multiple events-- they're professionals. You'll find that most catering and banquet managers at the SBH (and similiar hotels) start at small mostly wedding hotels and need at least 5+ years of event management before getting a position like that. I think you'll be in good hands! Good luck!
  • edited December 2011
    I guess my experience was different than the pp, but we got married at the Seaport Hotel and our coordinator there did everything for us.  She confirmed with all of the vendors and told them where to go.  She knew all of the layout stuff and set that up.  I made a last minute decision to dance with my BIL (who's like a dad to me but I was concerned about upsetting my dad who was at the wedding but wasn't a huge part of my life) while MH danced with his mom, and our coordinator passed that info to the DJ for us.  She even checked in on us periodically throughout the day to see if we needed water, food, etc.  She was in complete control of the day and I know my wedding ran so smoothly because of her.  Having another DOC would have been a complete waste of money.  I might check with the Sheraton and ask them what exactly the coordinator there takes care of.  Or you could see if another bride on here got married there and ask their experience with the coordinators.  Good luck!
    Kristen & Matt - June 27, 2008
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  • backbaybridebackbaybride
    10 Comments
    member
    edited December 2011
    I also think that this might be venue specific.  The day of planners at the Seaport are amazing.  They do coordinate with your vendors in the weeks leading up to the wedding, help you design ceremony and reception layouts, and plan every other aspect of your wedding. Since they know the hotel and its employees better than an outside DOC ever could, I almost felt that a DOC would be insulting/stepping on their toes.  I think that if possible you should speak with a Sheraton bride and see what level of service their planners provide.  If it's not "over the top" an outside DOC is probably a good investment.
  • edited December 2011
    Can you put together a list of things and ask them in writing if they do them? That would be a sure way to see if they commit to doing them. Good luck!

  • edited December 2011
    Thanks ladies! As always, these are great suggestions. If I needed one, I'd pay for it since my priority is to have things be as headache free as possible for me and my family (all my sibs have young chilcren/babies and understandably are occupied with them frequently). Just don't want it to be a waste of money since every little bit adds up!

    I think I'll email the hotel and ask what their role is.

    Another q:

    What sort of things should the DOC/hotel person be helping with? I have a general idea but I know there are things that need help/planning that I haven't even thought of. Sorry for a dumb question! :)
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