Our Disastrous Destination Wedding Week at Bahama Beach Club

I had a brilliant idea today. Why not spend my birthday, my self-awarded, once-in-a-blue-moon day off, by writing a thorough recap of our disastrous destination wedding week? Everyone has been asking how it went and I’ve been avoiding the topic on social media, but it’s been weighing on me so heavily that I’ve had nightmares every night since we got home, and I’m just plain tired of thinking about it.

I thought perhaps today was the perfect day to get it all off my chest… because you know how much I like writing up the negative side of travel. (See here, here, here and here for the 4 negative stories I’ve written in the past 657 posts. One of them is about Kim Kardashian’s butt, FYI.)

5,000 words later, I’m a wreck. I’m shaking & disappointed & livid all over again. Rookie move, Ange! It’s been three weeks since we said “I do” and I thought that would be enough time for perspective but, as with our choice of venue, it appears I made a huge mistake.

Y’all, things did not go well.

(And, UPDATE: things have gotten much worse. Stalking, defamation and death threats… I’m not even kidding.)

bahama-beach-club-destination-wedding-review-abaco-bahamas-craig-roberts-tripadvisor

Fiance & Fiancee on the way to Treasure Cay. No idea what we’re walking into.

Before my frustrated fingers run away with storytelling, our wedding did take place and we remain hopeful that we are legally married. We still have no marriage license or actual proof from the Bahamian government, but that’s not a concern I can entertain right now. I’ve been assured we’ll get it within 3 weeks to 6 months. (So yeah, we may head to the courthouse for wedding 2.0)

Since no one really has time to read 5,000 words, I chopped it all down to a quick version with some photos. For a more complete look at what happened, check out our TripAdvisor reviews & Wedding Wire review(Pay particular attention to the response from the resort owner to my Mom. It’s shocking & priceless.)

[12/12/15 UPDATE — The owner of Bahama Beach Club has had all our negative reviews on TripAdvisor removed except for one, so these links likely won’t work anymore. Scroll to the bottom for screenshots of our original reviews.

1/7/2016 UPDATE — Read about our ongoing saga to get our TripAdvisor reviews republished.]

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Me crying before the wedding. That happened a lot throughout the week.

Soon we’ll have all the pretty professional photos and with any luck they’ll warp my memories from the mess we ended up with to a fuzzy version of the week I wish we’d had. I just want to point out before I share the gorgeous footage and pictures of smiling faces and perfection, that our wedding week was NOT perfection. We are just photogenic & we hired a top notch photo & video team.

In reality, I was a crying ball of stress (made photo-ready by a magnificent makeup artist & waterproof everything), Rick was furious and our loved ones who scrimped and saved for months didn’t get the resort vacation they paid for.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Behind the scenes during wedding week. Some unhappy campers.

As I continue to grow as a blogger, I’m doing my best to present the whole picture with less emphasis on perfection.

It’s easy to get away from authenticity in the social media realm, where we often present stylized, filtered, sometimes unrealistic images of ourselves, our DIY projects, our brunches and our travels. I don’t want to be that person, and I really don’t want to perpetuate a myth that all weddings are picture perfect and Pinterest-ready, so I’m making a particular effort now to say,

“Our wedding week was a huge mess. We didn’t get what we paid for. We are extremely unhappy with the way it happened and we don’t want anyone else to waste hard-earned money on an experience that isn’t worth it.”

But first, some background on why we chose to get married in The Bahamas. I worked with the Ministry of Tourism as a publicist from 2006-2010, visiting several dozen times, coordinating conferences, visits for journalists, TV show tapings, brand partnership, b-roll shoots, pageants – you name it! As part of my work projects, I visited Mayaguana, Rum Cay, Cat Island, San Salvador, Inagua, Nassau, Grand Bahama, Andros, Harbour Island, Eleuthera, Exuma, Crooked Island, Long Island and of course, Abaco. Once I quit my PR job to become a full-time writer & blogger, I continued to write about The Bahamas and represent various hotel clients in Abaco and Exuma. My long-standing, positive relationship with the country was the main reason we chose to get married on Treasure Cay.

So what went wrong? Literally, all of the things. 100 million little details slipped through the cracks and all I could’ve dealt with each and every one without batting an eyelash. Hello, I work in PR.

But for now, I’ll just focus on the biggest debacle of all – the one I couldn’t do anything about.

After months of wedding planning purgatory – both hotel-related and not – we finally made it to Treasure Cay on Oct. 18 and checked into our condo. I was so ready to relax and focus on the big day ahead. We were starving so I gathered the family for a property tour en route to lunch.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Reception venue. T-minus 6 days.

Just visualize the look on my face when we walked up to our reception venue, the Pavilion, one of the resort’s two pool areas & restaurants, to see it completely in disarray – a construction site covered in dust, tools & equipment.

Confused and bewildered – I mean, why would there be construction at our wedding venue that we didn’t know about? – we made our way to the Pool Bar & Grill on the other side of the resort. This area was set to be the site of our Thursday night rehearsal dinner.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Imagine booking a vacation at a beautiful resort, paying in full and then arriving only to find half the amenities are unavailable and the onsite restaurants are closed. You’d be super mad right? Now imagine in addition to that, it’s your wedding week and your events are scheduled to take place in the construction sites. NOT AWESOME.

To our horror, the area was in a much worse state than the Pavilion – unpaved, covered in tarps, dust, equipment and a dozen workers.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

How would you feel if you promised your family and friends (some who came from as far as Italy, Australia and Afghanistan) an unforgettable beach vacation in a super classy resort only to bring them to a decidedly low rent situation with no available food or bar? That’s me, the professional travel expert of the family, bringing everyone to a construction site where you have to go on a hike to get a meal.

The pool with swim-up bar and the hot tub were both bone dry and unusable for the foreseeable future and naturally, due to all the construction, the restaurant and bar were closed.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Pool bar, closed for business.

With the rehearsal dinner five days away, I stood there with my mouth agape as our guests arrived and it dawned on me that there was nowhere to eat or drink on the property. Since it was the last week of off-season on the island, most Treasure Cay restaurants were shuttered. The closest restaurant by a long stretch was the Tipsy Seagull, a bar about 10 minutes walk down the road.

As recently as 2 weeks before our arrival, it was confirmed in writing and via phone that we could all eat, drink and gather at the onsite restaurants, bar & pools.

Despite my many attempts to be thoroughly prepared for every possibility, management neglected to inform me before arrival that the resort was barely functional and not equipped to receive guests.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

How would you feel if you promised your family and friends, some who came from as far as Italy, Australia and Afghanistan, an unforgettable beach vacation in a super classy resort only to bring them to a decidedly low rent situation with no available food or bar? That’s me, the professional travel expert of the family, bringing everyone to a construction site where you have to hike for your meals.

With two weeks notice, I could’ve moved our party to a resort with the capability to feed and entertain my group. Instead, I wasn’t even given a courtesy heads-up.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

One of the resort’s hot tubs… now known as a dry hole in the ground.

While all our loved ones saved for 8 months to make this once-in-a lifetime getaway happen, upon arrival they received a subpar experience that cost far more than it was worth from a vacation perspective – roughly $11,000 in room nights alone for a half-open resort with no food, bar, Wifi or amenities, that are all prominently advertised on the website.

Welcome to the Bahamas! This is at the front entrance.

Welcome to the Bahamas! This is at the front entrance.

And I spent my wedding week in hysterics because I couldn’t get a straight answer about when or if the construction would be completed. Every time I spoke with a staff member, the story changed. No one could tell me a real reason why the construction was taking place during a time when guests were scheduled to be on island. The first excuse was “due to Hurricane Joaquin damage,” but when I reminded them Joaquin didn’t hit their island, that changed to “hurricane preparation.”

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Our reception venue the day before the wedding

And I didn’t know until the actual day if our rehearsal or wedding would take place as planned.

I cried myself to sleep more than once and almost packed up and went home on Wednesday night – and I’m reasonably certain that’s not how a bride should feel during her wedding week.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Wedding decor? No, just construction debris.

Short of truly serious situations, like illness and death, I have never been so stressed out or overwhelmed in my life and I have one of the 6th most stressful job in America. (PR!) As with every event I’ve planned in the past, I expected inevitable bumps & snags, and we had plenty of minor issues to go with the big ones.

I believed that once we arrived in The Bahamas, all the meticulous follow-up on my part would lead to a fun, carefree week, as promised from day one by the wedding team at the hotel. Instead we were met with lies and half-truths and a management team that never once offered an apology.

Rick and I attempted to meet with the owner who was lurking around the edges of the events, schmoozing with selected guests, but he never made the time to meet with us to express his regret over ruining our week.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Never in my professional life have I ever dealt with a more disrespectful, condescending management team. It was appalling.

As you can imagine, there’s much, much, much more to the story. I won’t get into it all now, because I’m saving all the tears, injuries, outbursts, shark run-ins (actually that was the best part of the week), mini-hurricanes, hair stylist debacles, etc. for the book I’m writing. Something good should come of this debacle.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

The day of the wedding – the pool starts to fill up

Many have said, “Hey, at least you’re married.” It’s not just about the fact that we are successfully married – we could’ve saved tens of thousands in flights, accommodations and travel expenses if it was just about “being married” at the end of the day.

We paid for a certain wedding experience, and along with our guests, a certain luxurious resort experience, and neither was delivered.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

I don’t write about sad feelings very well – you guys know I like to tell about the fun stuff – but I don’t know how to put a positive spin on this massive disappointment.  We appreciate that the hotel refunded the cost of the rehearsal dinner since we had the privilege of hosting it next to an empty pool, and they did offer a few complimentary meals & drinks, but why not just tell us in advance about the construction so we could decide whether or not to spend our week (and our money) at a barely open hotel? Why not give us that choice?

Bahama Beach Club very cavalierly took away our one opportunity for a fun, relaxing wedding week and we can never get that week back.

Bahama Beach Club Wedding Review Abaco Island Destination

Do I look like a stress-free bride as promised by the resort? Gallons of tears were shed this week.

Maybe in a year, we can have a stress-free vow renewal somewhere peaceful? I’m not inclined to return to the same spot anytime soon and I just feel so sick about the whole thing, especially because I had such a wonderful relationship with The Bahamas for the past 10 years.

Can y’all just hug me and pat me on the head and tell me someday this will all make a funny cocktail party story (with an option for film rights)? Or else share your wedding horror story in the comments and I’ll gladly commiserate right along with you!

UPDATE 12/1/2015: Bahama Beach Club is using my decorations – the ones I paid for & designed – to advertise their wedding offerings on their social media channels. Given what they’ve put us through and the amount of money we all spent on a truly subpar experience, I think this is pretty despicable behavior.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

UPDATE 12/8/2015: The Chat invited me on the show to talk about romantic destinations AND our disastrous destination wedding experience at Bahama Beach Club. Check it out here! 

UPDATE 12/12/2015: Y’all are going to love this. After 6+ weeks have gone by without a word from Bahama Beach Club in response to our requests for refunds for a vacation experience not received & a wedding week ruined, Craig Roberts, the owner, has responded to our handful of TripAdvisor reviews… by copying and pasting his original smarmy response to my mom about the hurricane that never hit his island. He did a bit of editing though, this time revising to say we received all sorts of freebies & refunds that we most certainly did NOT receive.

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

I’ve been very clear in my coverage about what was received – the rehearsal dinner ($1,700) was comped because it took place next to a CONSTRUCTION SITE and EMPTY POOL, and was only offered after much hysteria on my part and many days of lying on their part. We received ONE free golf cart to transport our 38 guests around Treasure Cay. We never received a personal or sincere apology, or any conversation whatsoever to this day. As to additional refunds and free condos, I know nothing of either. I certainly paid for mine as did our loved ones, save for a couple of media who had independent arrangements with the resort. And you saw the photos… I don’t think there’s any question that we didn’t get what we paid for.

UPDATE 12/13/2015: The plot thickens. Several folks who attended the wedding and paid for a week at the Bahama Beach Club wrote reviews on TripAdvisor about how their vacations were wrecked by the construction. Suddenly, after the owner responded to all the reviews yesterday, all but one review, including my 2,000 words, have disappeared. If that doesn’t scream guilt from the rooftops, I don’t know what does!

Here are screenshots of three of the reviews I managed to salvage:

craig roberts bahama beach club treasure cay abaco destination wedding

craig roberts bahama beach club treasure cay abaco destination wedding

craig roberts bahama beach club treasure cay abaco destination wedding

Folks, this story just keeps getting more outrageous. Why a millionaire hotelier would bully a bride and groom and their family is beyond me.

UPDATE 12/14/2015: One of our wedding guests wrote about her experience at Bahama Beach Club. Sadly, it wasn’t just construction that made for a disappointing stay. Check out her post here. 

UPDATE: 12/15/2015: Look! We’re in Modern Luxury Brides!

UPDATE 12/20/15: The Florida Times-Union wrote about the disaster (and our love story!) in their Sunday wedding section. Check it out here. Thanks for helping us share our story, FTU!

UPDATE 12/31/2015: I spoke with a friend at the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism who has been trying to connect with the hotel to speak about a resolution. Multiple emails and voicemails have gone unanswered.

UPDATE 1/5/2016: Happy New Year! Bahama Beach Club is at it again. After reporting all our reviews out TripAdvisor & having them removed, I edited mine and reposted. The owner had this to say in response:

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Someone should’ve told me I wasn’t a real blogger! What have I been doing all these years?! 

But in all seriousness, BBC asked me for a comprehensive PR & social media proposal back in June and said the “sky is the limit.” They wanted someone to run their communications & social platforms, so I submitted a proposal. I never asked them for money to “write nice things.” Either they don’t know the difference between blogging & social media/PR, or they are purposefully defaming me and my career now. Obviously there’s not enough money in all of this rich hotelier’s bank accounts to make me write nice things about the bully who won’t quit.

And also, how about all these nuggets… free golf cartS, free ground transportation (ALL brides get that), FREE rooms – nope, we didn’t get any. The lies just flow so easily from this man.

UPDATE 1/20/2016: Since my post “The Curious Case of the Disappearing TripAdvisor Reviews” went viral last week, several new reviews from our wedding guests have posted on TripAdvisor. The owner’s original comments above were deleted and replaced with the following:

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

Isn’t it telling that trying to tear down my professional reputation is his only response?

Malicious & organized campaign from friends and family? Well, if 38 people have a terrible experience at your resort, I suspect you might get 38 negative reviews from them. Pesky math!

Our wonderful staff has apologized again & again? When? Where? We haven’t received a single personal response to any of our communications.

And my favorite part… “This Professional Blogger & very unhappy bride wanted money to write “nice things” about our resort. We refused!” The hotel asked me for a proposal to do their public relations back in June – clearly they need it, with management so off the rails! I obliged with a presentation and they decided to take their communications in another direction. That’s very different from me approaching them and demanding money to write nice things. Does he really think people buy his crazy TripAdvisor responses? Well, just in case they do, here’s the first email I received from Bahama Beach Club asking me for details on my services. Guess this kinda blows his whole assertion that I’m the unscrupulous one, huh?

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

UPDATE 1/24/2016: Bahama Beach Club is at it again! Check out this bride’s TripAdvisor review from their recently botched wedding:

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

That’s two weddings messed up at the hands of Bahama Beach Club. Brides & grooms, beware! There are dozens of other options in Abaco for your wedding. Don’t risk it at BBC!

UPDATE 2/7/2016: It’s been a little while since the last update! It’s hard to even know what to say about Craig Roberts’ responses to our guests’ latest TripAdvisor reviews. He continues to lie and say that I’ve asked him for money to write nice things – a risky move considering I have all the emails & voicemails where his team asked me for a PR/social media proposal to help their failing business. With the amount of evidence I have, I am shocked anyone could be so shameless! It really just continues to prove the level of deceit & appalling customer service we’re dealing with here.

In his latest rant against a paying hotel guest, Craig alludes to the bride’s aliases, as though I’m sitting here writing a bunch of reviews against his hotel. I don’t need aliases. There were dozens of unhappy, paying customers that week, at my wedding and at another wedding, and they’re all entitled to their opinions. I wrote one review and everyone else who was defrauded by the hotel’s false advertising has the right to share their story, too.

In a string of bizarre and irrelevant statements, he mentions how many people came to our wedding vs. how many he assumes we invited. He also says something about my Mom’s credit card charge being denied… which is A. untrue, B. has nothing to do with this guest’s experience anyhow and is C. not legal for a merchant to disclose customer transactions to anyone who is not the customer.

It’s a perplexing answer to a guest’s complaint that the pool was closed, right? Maybe next time Craig could actually address WHY no one told us that the hotel was under construction so we could move the festivities to a more prepared venue?

Craig Roberts bahama-beach-club-destination-wedding-review-abaco-bahamas-craig-roberts-tripadvisor Bahama Beach Club Abaco Destination Wedding REviewHe’s now posting his whacko rants about how I’m extorting him to every negative review, not just the ones from our guests! I guess since he’s dug himself into such an embarrassing hole, he thinks smearing my reputation is his only way out. But all the proof I have speaks for itself, so he’s really just embarrassing himself further.

His instability, lies and pride are driving his business into the ground, which is a shame, because Bahama Beach Club has many employees and condo owners who depend on revenue and his unhinged responses on TripAdvisor just prove that it’s not a good place to stay — not while he’s in charge. I hope and pray he gets the help he needs sooner rather than later!

Also to note: a curious number of gushingly positive reviews have suddenly appeared. Whether they’re from actual guests or compensated fake reviews, I can’t say. But it certainly makes you wonder…

UPDATE 2/8/2016: I feel for the other bride whose wedding was botched by Bahama Beach Club. She posted her negative review about the experience on TripAdvisor and what do you think Craig did? He copied and pasted the same old defamatory nonsense about my wedding on her review. You’d think after they wrecked her wedding to such an extent that she CHANGED VENUES the day before, they might deign to respond to her individually. Absolutely shameful!

Craig Roberts Bahama Beach Club Wedding Review Abaco Treasure Cay

Bahama Beach Club Destination Wedding Review TripAdvisor Craig Roberts Abaco Treasure Cay

And here’s the message she sent to Craig afterward:

Bahama Beach Club - An Unforgettable Destination Wedding in The Bahamas

UPDATE 2/9/2016: My hunch was right. Bahama Beach Club has been sending out gifts & incentives to past guests who write positive reviews. No wonder so many over-the-top positive ones have popped up lately. This is expressly against TripAdvisor policy. I wonder if they’ll actually hold them to the rules this time?

UPDATE 2/24/2016: My husband posted a review and here is Craig’s precious response. Doesn’t warrant a diatribe from me, but I thought you guys would enjoy seeing his latest!

Craig Roberts Bahama Beach Club Wedding Review Abaco Bahamas Treasure Cay HOtel

The saga continues… I will keep you posted on developments of course – watch this space! And TV, radio, the newspaper, the Internet….

Disclaimer: I received a menial discount from Bahama Beach Club on our rehearsal dinner bonfire. As you can see, we got the ultra-discounted wedding experience, too. FTC rules require that all journalists make it clear if they received anything free or discounted and also that they provide their honest opinion. You know I always do, hence this honest review of the Bahama Beach Club wedding experience. Also, I fully realize there’s nothing worse than reading a sob story about some girl’s first-world problems, and wedding complaints squarely fall into that category. Rick and I are the most blessed married couple in the world, and the most grateful. I write this post out of disgust for the way my guests were treated and taken advantage of, in the hopes that our experience will help other couples make better, more informed decisions when choosing a destination wedding location.

COME AWAY WITH ME!
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  • November 14, 2015

    Hugs. What a mess. The least they could do is genuinely apologize instead of perpetuating the hurricane narrative, to an absurd level, on Tripadvisor.

    You will, most definitely, laugh yourself silly about this someday.

    • November 19, 2015

      I think so, too… perhaps, in our retirement home we can put on a short play about the whole situation for our compatriots in the home. It’ll get rave reviews, I’m sure!

  • November 14, 2015

    I’m so sorry this happened to you, Angie! You deserve so much better. How about an awesome one-year anniversary vow renewal in Miami or the Florida Keys!? xoxo
    Kara Franker recently posted..3 Reasons to Read Condé Nast Traveler Magazine this MonthMy Profile

    • November 19, 2015

      That sounds like a plan! We almost decided to get married in the Keys and I’m regretting our decision bigtime!

  • November 14, 2015

    Hugs. I’m so sorry you had such a terrible time.
    Linda recently posted..Odessa and Kiev: Our Ukraine podcastMy Profile

  • November 15, 2015

    Oh babe!!! I am shocked at the way they handled the entire situation. Why on earth would they not have told you? On another note, I cannot wait to read the book about this. Congratulations on exchanging vows. You are blessed to find someone you want to share your life with. <3
    Diana Edelman recently posted..Because Sometimes You Don’t Realize It’s Love Until It’s GoneMy Profile

    • November 19, 2015

      We are definitely blessed! Aside from the wedding debacle, marriage has been wonderful =)

    • November 19, 2015
      V saunders

      I personally feel terribly about your experience however it is unfortunate that The Bahamas gets the blame for this situation. The resort owners are not even Bahamians and any issues concerning your experience should be taken up with the resort. Treasure Cay is a beautiful place and should not be rated by this one resort and what they allowed to happen to you! Wish you and your husband the best!

      • November 19, 2015

        Hi Venetta, thanks for your comment. I think the resort & its owners are clearly the ones getting the blame here. I did take it up with them, only they won’t respond and don’t care to compensate us. The Bahamas had nothing to do with the poor management of the resort and in my TripAdvisor review, I thanked all the Bahamians who did their best to make a terrible situation somewhat ok. I’ve written extensively over the past 10 years about how great The Bahamas are, and this is really my first bad incident. It’s a shame that most people only read news if it’s negative!

      • November 21, 2015
        S Hield

        V. Saunders I do agree with you that not all Businesses in Abaco and throughout the Bahamas are the same. while I do apologize for your experience. As a Bahamian I don’t think that the entire Abaco or the Bahamas should be beaten with the stick of your bad experience with Bahama Beach Club. This is one of the reason I always say to business persons you know that there is a certain time when your compact is closed during the slow time when a lot of them take this time to renovate. Please let your guest know or refer them to other businesses to avoid this embarrassment happening to you.

        • December 14, 2015
          Denise Carew

          S. Hield, you obviously skimmed the article or put your own twist with your understanding of what she wrote. I don’t know any of these people, but I can surely tell without a doubt that the point of the article is the dishonesty of the club, as well as the failure to take responsibility for their actions. Angie clearly stated that she has had fantastic experiences with The Bahamas in regards to the location, businesses, and locals, and she merely wanted to bring to light THE TRUTH so that other people will be informed about the type of people they will be dealing with. I’m considered a very kind-hearted person who gives people the benefit of the doubt many times over, and this resort is lucky I didn’t go through this experience.

      • November 21, 2015
        Doug Benson

        I feel for you as well…you only get married once, and it should be a wonderful experience. Like V, I encourage you not to write off the Bahamas…as you discovered the people of the Bahamas are wonderful, friendly, loving people. Treasure Cay is an ideal place, although on your week it was not the case. I have a place at the Beach Club and absolutely love it there…I wish your time was as special as ours has been…Come back, when you are ready, and replace the painful memories with some worthy of the Bahamas and wonderful Bahamian people!

      • November 21, 2015

        V, Angie is the biggest Bahamas fan of anyone I know—she did, after all, head up their U.S. PR for years!—and I assure you she is only dissing the management and select staff here (many of whom, I realize, are indeed Americans). I was at the wedding, and there were plenty of islanders (like Chantelle and her father) who were wonderful to us. It’s just a shame that a resort like this can stay in business! I know there are plenty of other wonderful places in Abaco and beyond that would not have treated her this way.

      • November 23, 2015
        Datus

        The owners may not be Bahamian but it is managed by Bahamians. It should never have happened and the resort employees share blame with its owners for allowing construction to go on during a booked wedding.

  • November 15, 2015
    Marlene

    Angie I can’t even express my shock when we arrived to such disarray. Jen and I couldn’t believe how things were going to come together in the few days before the wedding. I hope you someday day can look back and focus on all your family and friends were there to support you and Rick in what should have been the happiest time of your life. Good luck to you both and it was a pleasure to meet you.

  • November 16, 2015

    Oh no! What a mess 🙁 You have every right to be upset! I can’t believe how unprofessional and ridiculous the whole situation turned out to be. I wouldn’t want to go back anytime soon either!
    Rachel recently posted..Fun Findings Friday #147My Profile

    • November 19, 2015

      Thanks, Rachel – appreciate your sympathy!

  • November 16, 2015
    Stephanie Doscher

    At least you’ll get a book deal out of it… 😉 I’m so sorry your wedding week was a disaster. I HATE when people try and throw the “at least your married now” or “It’s the marriage that counts, not the wedding” at you. We dream about our dream wedding our entire lives and we only (most of us) get one. Just ONE shot. I feel your pain. I know the heartache. I didn’t get the grand engagement or the parties, the dress shopping, the first look as you walk down the isle..the morning of jitters of “this is my wedding day”. Due to circumstances we discussed getting married and did so in 4 days in my dining room while wearing jeans and flip flops. It was beautiful and quirky and my mother was there and while there is a part of me that loved it, I will always feel cheated out of “my special day”. Even having a vow renewal in a few years wont change that feeling of “I’m about to get married!!!” excitement. I’m already married. I can’t get day back. I’ve already been asked to be his wife. I don’t get romantic surprise with a photographer hiding in the bushes to capture it all. Yes, you’re married and yes, in the end that is what counts but it really SUCKS to feel like you got cheated out of something you’ve spent 30+ years thinking and dreaming about.

  • November 16, 2015
    Neville

    Angie, first congratulations to you and Rick I remembered the first time we met while I was then the manager of the Peace and Plenty Hotel in Exuma, you were that perfect PR person who who wanted to sell the Bahamas as the perfect destination .
    In my opinion, you are well known through out the Bahamas , and for such a disaster to happen to you and your guests is unacceptable, I do hope you will address the Minister of Tourism (Obie Wilchcome).
    If you and your guests are not compensated justly Angie, reminder that the PEN is mightier than the sword , and you are one of the best in the travel Industry in what you do.
    In regards to your marriage license, I think you and your husband will have to return to the Island and to sign out by the local commissioner.
    Good tidings to you and Rick on your journey in marriage, ski on the calm waters, and surf the rough waves.
    Love and Blessings to you both!

    • November 19, 2015

      Hi Neville – it’s so nice to hear from you, and thank you for the kind words. I think there are those out there who feel I’m “smearing” The Bahamas unjustly, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. You know how much I love this country and have dedicated huge chunks of my time to promoting it! Perhaps I’ll send the Minister a note! For what it’s worth, we honeymooned on Exuma and had a lovely time =)

    • November 21, 2015

      I totally agree with you, Neville! As a journalist, I first met Angie through working with her on coverage of the Bahamas. She’s responsible for me falling in love with the islands (particularly Exuma!) and making repeat visits over the past decade and has always been the Bahamas’ biggest cheerleader and ambassador.

      As someone who was also at the wedding, I’m still absolutely appalled at the way she was treated and how dismissive the resort was of her concerns—they seriously acted like we (the 30 guests) were in the wrong for being upset at the state the place was in. I hope you’ll share her story around with your tourism friends in the islands in hopes that this doesn’t happen again to a future bride!
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  • November 16, 2015
    Kim Henrichs

    HUGS!!! Oh my gosh, my head would have spun like the exorcist there is no doubt. I hope your Trip Advisor comments put them out of business they would deserve it.

    On a happy note – congrats! I hope you guys have an anniversary trip somewhere TOP notch!!

    • November 19, 2015

      Haha, the exorcist! I only had a couple of private moments where I really lost it, otherwise I think I was pretty level-headed. At least with the staff who tried to help. My poor family and now-husband had to deal with me crying a lot!

      Where do you recommend for our anniversary trip?

      • November 20, 2015
        Kim Henrichs

        YOU are a superhero! 🙂
        I recommend Ubud in Bali or Tulum, Mexico!! Or go opposite spectrum and see the northern lights in a cozy cabin in Fairbanks….

  • November 17, 2015

    Eugh. Just eugh. So so sorry you had to go through this. And don’t play the first world problems card- everyone deserves a special wedding day, especially someone who works as hard as you!!! I feel for you, and am so upset that not only did you and your guests have to go through this, but the resort was atrocious in dealing with this! Let’s hope your book is a best seller 😉
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    • November 19, 2015

      I appreciate that so much, Tamara! Lots of folks “guilting” me about my reaction, but in any other situation aside from a wedding, it’s ok to write a review about not getting what you paid for. I’ll send you a copy of my best-seller when it hits newstands 😉

  • November 18, 2015

    first of all: congratulation! 🙂 secondly: wtf?! that sounds like a nightmare of a week! you should be compensated a lot more, if you as me!
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    • November 19, 2015

      Thank you for the congrats & the fist bump of solidarity. Crappy situation, for sure!

  • November 18, 2015

    Great portrait pictures. I love the light and contract, but the color is magnificent, natural! What lens did you use for this session? Thank you!
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  • November 18, 2015

    I am so sorry about all this and yes you will hopefully laugh in the future(especially when you cash the checks from the book) . Please run on down to city hall and get officially married just to cover yourselves –you didn’t elaborate on this aspect but you hinted. I have rebuilt a house and I can tell you that was no “prep for hurricane” that was out and out construction of a hotel–of course they didn’t want to reimburse you–that was 11 grand to pay the construction workers! You are blessed to have each other and a riot of a story and all that really matters is that you actually marry—BUT–they should be shammed all over the place for putting yout hrough that on this most important moment.

    • November 19, 2015

      Thanks so much for your comment, Angelique! We may head to the courthouse soon just to cover our bases… it would be nice if I could get on my new hubby’s health insurance! Appreciate your support & solidarity!

    • November 23, 2015
      Nikki

      I am a Bahamian and I am very sorry to learn of this most unfortunate mayhem you experienced. As you stated, your ordeal is by no means a true representation of The Bahamas or its people. The resort management dropped the ball big time and should not have been operational or making bookings in the midst of construction. I hope you do visit us again and I wish you a life filled with love, joy and breathtaking memories that will have your heart smiling for years to come.

  • November 18, 2015
    Maryann Sanders

    Please tell me by now they’ve apologized officially and refunded your money! If not, you seriously need to consider a lawsuit. People have sued for much less – the emotional distress alone and taking away what was supposed to be your happiest week. I just feel so bad for you and your husband! Have been a longtime reader & I know how hard you work. This is just appalling on every level. Not sure it’s much consolation, but I’ll never ever stay at that hotel!

    • November 19, 2015

      To date I’ve received no apology and no refund, other than the $1,700 I mentioned for the rehearsal dinner. Appreciate your comment, Maryann!

  • November 18, 2015
    Adam Turnquest

    The best part is all the Bahamians saying to get over it because a wedding ain’t what a marriage is about. Doesn’t get your $50,000 back dos it? My country is full of some dumb people. If this is how we treat visitors no wonde r tourism is bus up

    • November 19, 2015

      Thanks for your comment, Adam! I’ve seen some of those comments, too, and those are the most bothersome. They tell me A. people haven’t read the story and are just assuming I’m some rich girl who is complaining about little details going wrong, and B. Folks are assuming that I care more about my wedding than our marriage. Nothing could be further from the truth. But as you mentioned, we spent a heap of money collectively to have this once-in-a-lifetime trip… it would’ve been nice if the resort was fully open or if the management had communicated with us in advance so WE, the customers who were paying, could make a decision on how to spend our hard-earned money. Rich girl, I am not!

  • November 18, 2015
    Meltoria Woodside

    Angie, I am from the Bahamas and as I read your story I could not believe the treatment you have received!!! I can honestly say that I have never heard tourist being treated this horrible. I really wish I could have given you that hug!!
    I can not apologize for this resort as I myself have had a bad experience with the management so I know they have a nasty attitude. I will share you story on social media and ask the Bahamian people to demand Bahama Beach club to return every Dollar you have spent with them.

    Once again HUGS!!!

    • November 19, 2015

      I’ll take your virtual hug, Meltoria – appreciate you chiming in! Honestly, I’ve been to The Bahamas dozens and dozens of times, and visited almost every inhabitable island, and I think that’s why this week came as such a surprise. I thought getting married in The Bahamas would be a no-brainer – I love the country and have always had such a strong relationship with the people. It didn’t work out how I would’ve liked, but I hope that it’ll come to a happy resolution in the very near future. Thanks again for your thoughtful comment!

  • November 18, 2015
    Sarah

    I’m so sorry to hear.. And read about your horrific experience! I am a homeowner in Treasure Cay. I was on the island during your wedding week. I know because I saw the same construction at BBC and was there for what you call a “mini hurricane.” In fact I’m pretty sure I saw your group walk by my home and I could hear fits of laughter coming down the beach…it’s a small community and in the “off season” it’s pretty obvious when a big group is there, high season or not.
    I understand that the construction going on would put damper on wedding plans. But please, I ask you, don’t use your experience as a smear campaign against the the Bahamas or even Treasure Cay! By all means use it as your story and tell the world YOUR story but please don’t blast us. It really is a lovely place to visit and it’s not Nassau or Freeport . We don’t have a ton of restaurants, shopping and casinos to offer, but that’s the beauty of it! We are a community, and if I had known that there was a wedding going on and the extent of the BBC construction I would have offered my home (and heated pool) to you and your guests. I’m sorry that we didn’t get to meet and that I couldn’t help make your wedding experience more pleasurable.

    Sincerely,
    H.H.

    P.S. You might want to tell your readers that the “mini hurricane” was only a slight brushing of a tropical storm and resulted in half a days rain and no wind!

    • November 19, 2015

      Hi Sarah/H.H., thanks for your comment. I’m not in the business of smear campaigns – in fact, you’ll find I’ve promoted The Bahamas vigorously and professionally for almost a decade. Treasure Cay is wonderful, as are The Bahamas. There’s no question about that. Having been to almost every inhabited island – Inagua, Mayaguana, Rum Cay, San Sal, etc., I can say that with confidence. You’ll find the vast majority of my coverage surrounding The Islands of The Bahamas has been complimentary. Check out these articles:
      http://bit.ly/1PBKgPw
      http://bit.ly/1SHdQ3S
      http://bit.ly/1HZit8W
      And a link to all my recent coverage, including print stories where I’ve raved about the destination: http://bit.ly/1HZitG3

      I was hoping to be able to cover my destination wedding on Treasure Cay in the same way – with beautiful photos, articles, TV segments, YouTube video, etc. My job these days is to tell my travel stories – and in this case, unfortunately, it wasn’t a good one. I hope, though, that our bad experience helps other brides make better decisions.

  • November 19, 2015
    Stephen

    I am a Bahamian, and have lived in the Bahamas all of my 40+ years, the last 20 being in Abaco. I am so saddened to hear of your experience, not just that your wedding was almost ruined, but I am embarrassed as a Bahamian. That being said, I would like everyone reading of Angie’s horrible experience to understand that situations like this are not typical of Abaco, or the Bahamas in general. While, based on my own experiences, I do not find your story about Bahama Beach Club surprising, it would be a shame if all Abaconians and our local resorts and businesses were judged based on their actions. As a photographer I have been a part of many weddings, parties and special events that displayed the class and professionalism that Angie did not receive. Angie, I hope that one day you will consider visiting our island again, maybe this time try a different settlement or outer island. We are not perfect, and things will happen during your visit that will cause you to roll your eyes in disbelief. But, we have more to offer than what you experienced, and I hope one day you get to see that first hand. All the best in your marriage.

    • November 19, 2015

      Hi Stephen, thanks so much for your comment and your sympathies! I’ve visited just about every inhabited Bahamian island, so I know that what happened to us is the exception, not the norm. Abaco will always be near and dear to me, even with the messed up wedding week added to the list of memories. Having spent so much time in the islands and having written about them so positively for 10+ years, I think this particular incident scarred me even more than it would the casual visitor. It was just so unexpected. I’m sure I’ll be back someday, though I know what hotel I’ll avoid 😉

  • November 19, 2015

    I am so, so sorry that your wedding week went the way it did. What you found upon arrival at BBC was simply inexcusable. It’s true, your wedding was scheduled during what is usually considered “down time” in Abaco’s tourism-related industry, but if BBC accepted your reservation and event booking, then they owed it to you to provide a decent, fully-functional venue!

    I do hope you’ll consider returning to Abaco for a vow renewal, so that you can replace those unpleasant memories with some happy ones. (If you do, consider the Green Turtle Club on Green Turtle Cay. Molly McIntosh, who works at the club is an amazing event planner– she did our wedding. You’ll never EVER regret working with Molly, and she will bend over backwards to give you a fantastic, memorable event.)

    In the meantime, in hopes that it will bring you a tiny bit of comfort (or at least a chuckle or two of recognition) I thought I’d share some of the highlights from my cousin’s October 1996 wedding in Nassau.

    – Hurricane Lily began traveling toward the Bahamas a few days before the wedding. The day before the event, as the out-of-town guests were arriving and rain was pouring down in buckets, the hotel informed my cousin that they were closing down in preparation for the storm and “cancelling” her wedding. Not only that, but she needed to come and pick up her guests, as the hotel was closing all together. Fortunately, the bride’s family lives in Nassau, and we were able to get the guests billeted out — but it made for a very stressful wedding eve.

    – Later that Friday, we got word that the airport would be shutting down in anticipation of the storm. All of the wedding party members had arrived — except for the groom. After some stressful and tearful phone calls, he was ultimately able to get on the last flight into Nassau before the airport closed.

    – While shuttling guests between the airport and the homes of family members who had offered to house them, my cousin and I were rear-ended in her car. After calling the police, we waited in the rain for an hour or more, only to have them not show up.

    – Ultimately, Lily turned out to be a non-issue. The storm passed over the night before the wedding with little more than a bit of wind and some rain. Still, the hotel refused to hold the wedding — they said that all the necessary preparations hadn’t been made, and everything was still boarded up. So we had dozens of guests, a bride and a groom, but no wedding venue.

    – My aunt and uncle offered their back yard as an alternative wedding venue, and my cousin’s friends all showed up to decorate the yard, make food and arrange a beautiful, impromptu garden wedding. The event itself was truly lovely. But afterwards, many guests returned to their cars to discovered they had all been broken into.

    – The day after the wedding, two of the groom’s brothers went snorkeling. Only one came back. A search party was organized, the authorities were called and much praying ensued. A few hours later, the second brother meandered back in, completely unaware of the fuss. He had just swum out further to explore.

    – Because my cousin and I did not stay at the scene of the rear-end accident, we had to go to the police station within 48 hrs to file a report. Our first chance to do this was mid-day Sunday after the wedding, at which time the police told me (as the driver) that I would have to appear at a later date for some reason — I can’t now recall why. When I said I wouldn’t be able to, as I was returning home to Canada in a week or so, they said if there was any indication I wouldn’t appear, they would have to “detain” me. I can’t remember how I eventually got out of it, but I do recall a lot of tears at the police station.

    – After the wedding, my cousin (who is a Bahamian who married an American) learned that there had been some mix up with her U.S. immigration documents. As a result, she spent the first month of married life in the Bahamas away from her husband, who had to return to the U.S. two days after the wedding for work.

    The good news is that my cousin and her husband have been happily married for close to 20 years and yes, over time, all the frustration and stress has faded and been replaced with nostalgia and happy memories. Hopefully the same will be the case for you.

    Congratulations on your wedding, and again, I’m so sorry your experience was so disappointing.

    Amanda

    • November 19, 2015

      Thank you for sharing your cousin’s wedding stories! It sounds like I am not the only one who had some mishaps along the way to matrimony!!

      Also, I agree with you about Green Turtle Club! I’ve stayed there many, many times and count Molly & her team among the best in the country. Had we known about the construction at BBC, we absolutely would’ve waited a week until GTC opened again for the season to have our big day. I still love the Abacos and nearly everyone there 😉

  • November 19, 2015
    melanie bowe

    You should send this letter letter To The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism

  • November 19, 2015

    Ang,
    Ughh what a disaster, my heart bleeds for you guys.
    But as far as the resort goes, I think you were actually to soft on them, they deserve your full wrath! That should never, ever happen to anyone, never mnid a world famous blogged like you 😉 What a disgrace and poor way to run a business, unbelievable … As much as I love the Bahamas too, I for one won’t be visiting there any time soon.
    All my best to the newlyweds!
    Jerry

    • November 19, 2015

      Thanks, Jerry. We had some good times on Green Turtle, didn’t we?!

  • November 19, 2015
    Graham Thordarson

    Hi Angie,
    As a born and raised Bahamian, I want to apologise for the fact that you had such a tremendously disappointing experience here, especially at such an important time in your life. I also want to thank you for doing your best to emphasise that you fault the resort and not the country for this experience.
    I have no affiliation with the resort. I am not even in the hospitality industry, but I just feel as though I have to apoligise and hope ou can convince your family and friends, if they have the opportunity, to give The Bahamas, more specifically, we the people of The Bahamas, another chance. As you know, the best, most restful and peaceful, yet fun experiences are to be had in the Family Islands, rather than Nassau, which has become overly urbanised and touristified – if I may coin a word – even for a native like me. I often fantasise about moving to Eleuthera or Exuma myself.
    Hoping your marriage goes better than your wedding. Wishing all happiness to you and your husband.

  • November 19, 2015
    Rosie

    As a Bahamian it tears me up to read/hear of such a tragedy caused by my fellow Bahamians. I agree wholeheartedly with you that you should have been informed of the construction going on at the time and allow you to make the decision to get married there or change venue if you so desired. As a matter of fact I think they should have reimbursed you fully and thrown in something extra as a gift when they realized that they were not going to be completely ready on the day that you were scheduled to be there. We as a people were not brought up to do such things to others especially, particularly as Tourism is our number one industry and America being our biggest customer. On behalf of my country and particularly the people of Treasure Cay who depend on the revenue from that resort to survive I would like to extend a heartfelt apology to you and your husband and the rest of your family.

    • November 29, 2015

      Thanks, Rosie. I agree that the sensible thing to do would be to refund our money – particularly our loved ones who saved for months for this once-in-a-lifetime luxurious trip. So far, we’ve had no response to our inquiries to the property.
      Angie Away recently posted..8 Things To Do Onboard The Rocky MountaineerMy Profile

  • November 20, 2015

    Congrats on your wedding and I am sorry to hear about your unfortunate experience. The only reason persons as myself will take offense is title of your article. The word Bahamas refers to a chain of 700 islands and cays. The reason for your problems lays squarely on the resort property and therefore your article should be titled as such. I wish you all the best in your future.

  • November 20, 2015

    I feel your pain I’m a bahamian living in another island of the Bahamas, this is unfortunate the hatel should have atleast give you an return trip free of charge, but this resort isn’t owned or ran by Bahamians, so I feel its the responsibility of the owner to correct the problem< I do hope and pray Gods blessing on your union and hope you can laugh at this in years to come, but do know all of the Bahamas isn't like this,

  • November 21, 2015

    Angie + Rick, our heartfelt apology. It is beyond comprehension what BBC’s management was thinking when they allowed you to book your wedding ( and their actions inexcusable) but its does demonstrates why having a local professional wedding planner (independent of the resort) is so important for couples planning destination weddings in the Bahamas.
    And while your experience in the Bahamas is extensive (and well documented by you) it turns out that when it mattered most (your wedding day) you didn’t have the critical information need to be the gracious host you intended to be for your family and wedding guest (information that a Bahamas wedding planner would have been able to help you with).
    Unfortunately, we can’t change what happened but promise to use your experience to help others. And we look forward to having you back in the Bahamas for a “do over” with a Vow Renewal.

  • November 21, 2015
    hollie

    Hi angie, I am very deeply concerned about your disastrous wedding experience and visit at the Bahamia Beach Resort in the Abacos. However, I think you need to make it alot plainer that this resort is not owned by BAHAMIANS and you received great service from the Bahamian Concierge (if you did), because I never got the idea the Bahamian Concierge helped until I read several comments, but please, based on your story it is not plain enough that this is not the Bahamas fault or the Bahamas shouldn’t be a great Wedding or Vacation Destination, as we remain one of the best Vacation Destinations. I am a very concerned Bahamian who like thousands of others, is very concerned about our Tourists’ and our Tourism Industry! All the best to you and your marriage, your family!!!

  • November 21, 2015

    It’s one thing for a property to be under construction, but they most definitely should have given you a heads-up. That’s super unprofessional, not to mention shady! I would have been livid and devastated, too! I’m so sorry! I’m glad you’ve written about all your wedding debacles, though – I definitely know a few providers to AVOID like the plague, should I ever consider planning a destination wedding of my own!
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  • November 21, 2015

    Oh girl, this is terrible! I’m so sorry to you, I would be an absolute mess and someone would’ve been physically attacked had it been me. Ugh! You know what I LOVE though? That you’re turning this into a book. That’s the Angie I know! Turning the negatives into the positives. And I can’t wait to read it!!! 🙂

  • November 21, 2015
    Carlos

    Wow! This was really not a good representation of the Bahamas at all. Being from the Bahamas, this leaves a distasteful taste and I’m sorry you had to go through that. It all goes to show how one bad incident can respresent for all. The Bahamas consist of 700 hundred islands and cays and its situations like this that gives it a bad name, hence the headline topic of this story. Even though treasure cay is somewhat a private entity island, it’s still represents the Bahamian people and this situation was truly dealt with poor taste and a serious lack of respect and dignity. I don’t know you but I apologize to you because that’s my country and I feel ashamed that one bad apple out of 700 left you with a situation where you now view us as a whole.

    • November 29, 2015

      Hi Carlos – I don’t view the Bahamas negatively as a whole. This article was about one incident at one hotel. The rest of my coverage is much more positive, as I’m still a fan of the country.
      Angie Away recently posted..8 Things To Do Onboard The Rocky MountaineerMy Profile

  • November 21, 2015
    Jill

    Angie, you were treated like crap, and I’m glad you wrote this because people need to know that this could happen to them. That’s so important that you’re giving us this information so other can make [hopefully] well-informed decisions in the future. Cheers to you and Rick. I’m rooting for both of you!

  • November 21, 2015
    Anne K.

    I am so sorry to hear back your horrible experience. If you write a book, I will buy it 🙂

  • November 21, 2015
    Dana McManus

    Please. In the last 2 months, my ex of 8 years died, my home was burglarized, then I lost the house and car all together (Google “The State reporter escapes sunroof”) due to a gigantic flood … and then… and THEN!!! My longtime, live-in boyfriend’s daughter up and died with no warning at 33 years old. Cry me a river. Sorry you didn’t have the magical setting you’d expected, but really…

    • November 26, 2015
      DS

      Nice! I bet you weren’t the most popular kid in the playground. Have some compassion for others, despite how distressing your situation has been.

  • November 22, 2015

    Hi Angie! I feel sorry for what happened during your supposed ‘stress-free’ wedding. They should at least have the decency to inform you beforehand that construction is ongoing. did they reimburse the payment? Will wait for the book to come out!
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  • November 22, 2015
    Phill

    Destination weddings are so scary. I’m from the Bahamas and marrying my Bermudian fiance’ next year. I am terrified of having a wedding anywhere that I’m not because even with daily contact to cover all bases people can pull a fast one (or a slow on in your case).
    Don’t be bothered by folks telling you to how to handle or tell your story. If it were me I can’t promise you I wouldn’t have been arrested. Weddings are expensive and I won’t even mention the emotional value. Thanks for sharing. I will never visit this resort.

  • November 22, 2015

    Hey Angie, just read this whole thing and your review on TripAdvisor. I’m so sorry your wedding was ruined. Although the situation sucked all around, if they had just called to tell you about the construction, you would have been pissed but as you said it would have allowed you time to come up with a Plan B. Not sure if they’d think you wouldn’t notice the construction or if the resort completely forgot to mention this to you. Things happen and it sucks, but why isn’t the resort acting maturely and professionally and taking full responsibility? A public ” my bad” with a sincere apology to you would have made a difference — not fixed the construction but would have righted at least 1 of their numerous wrongs.

    Also, that guy’s reply to your mom on TA is ridiculous. Takes 0 responsibilty for any of this and makes it seem like you’re overreacting. I hope your book is a bestseller once it’s out. I’ll be sure to buy it. Sorry again, what a nightmare. ;-((
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  • November 23, 2015

    Angie, this is horrible. As a Bahamian I am completely mortified and surprisingly I shouldn’t be as this kind of things happen to locals daily. The level of customer service you receive as a tourist is twenty times better than what we receive as locals. Regardless this is still ridiculous and I am so sorry to hear that your wedding day was a disaster! Hopefully this story can go viral so it can embarrass our officials into tightening up on customer service! Again, I’m so sorry!
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  • November 23, 2015

    I love your blog and I’m sorry to hear about your wedding. I recently started a blog of my own and would love some feedback http://2rightfeet.net/

  • November 23, 2015
    Patty

    Hi Angy, just read about your bitter experience in The Bahamas. I live here and so sorry you had such a terrible experience on your special day. The hotel reps were very unprofessional in not letting you know about the under construction plans and I hope you send this information directly to Ministry of Tourism. I am sure they will want to make up for such a bad time.
    I just wanted to say to you that your marriage I am sure will be one of the most amazing ones and for ever ones. I say this because the way I got married was not how I wanted it to be especially the color of the dress I was wearing but we been together for 18 years and known each other for 23. Wishing you a happy life together. Warm hug from the Bahamas and please come back some time.

  • November 23, 2015

    Angie,

    The family friendly associates of Treasure Cay Beach, Marina and Golf Resort and our Tipsy Bar/Pizza Night and Junkanoo Javas Restaurant very much enjoyed hosting your guests and are very sad and apologize for the experience your friends and family experienced at the Bahama Beach Club, a nearby resort interest not operated by us. Treasure Cay beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Bahamas, even during hurricane Season. We purposely kept two of our outlets open while all others closed to ensure some choice even during our own seasonal closure.
    Weddings are the number one attraction to the Bahamas next to Sun and Sand and the Bahamians of North Abaco are full of love and friendliness and as you can see many wish your family and friends a most excellent return. We would be pleased to host you and or your friends as our guests at our resort within the next 12 months in an effort of goodwill and in the interest of all of Abaco/Treasure Cay via your contact to me at GM or Avis Miller (Resort Mgr of +35 years) directly. We guarantee your satisfaction at our nearby resort and I am certain other nearby resort operators of the Abacos in the Bahamas join our team in apology for what has happened in the Bahamas if even not our resort. Please consider a romantic renewal of vows or weekend getaway or second honeymoon back to Abaco and Treasure Cay Beach on me. I guarantee it to be absolutely special and spectacular and Authentically Bahamian as you expected-110 associates back our Guarantee!!!
    Your Out Island Friend,
    Treasure Cay Beach, Marina and Golf Resort
    Stephen Kappeler, GM
    President of the Marinas of the Bahamas Assn
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    • November 26, 2015

      Hi Stephen,

      I was at Angie’s wedding and just wanted to say how much we all enjoyed our meals at Tipsy and Junkanoo Javas (and the bakery in the marina area). Thanks for providing her guests with fun options, particularly in the wake of the resort not having a restaurant open!
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    • November 29, 2015

      Hi Stephen – thanks so much for your kind offer! We would’ve been lost without the Tipsy Seagull during wedding week, so we appreciate the hospitality! I’ll be in touch if we make our way back to Treasure Cay.
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  • November 25, 2015

    Angie, this is beyond belief, as a hotel owner and wedding coordinator on the island of Eleuthera I feel terrible that this could even happen to anyone. I only wish you could have come to Eleuthera where we would have created magic for you. I follow you on Instagram and always enjoy your travels. If you do venture back into the Bahamas, I would love to create a courtesy vow renewal for you as a gift from The Bahamas and Boy Meets Girl Weddings. Regards Mish

    • November 29, 2015

      Thank you so much for your kind words, Mish. I’ve followed you on Instagram for a while and you have the most beautiful weddings! Your offer is so kind. I’ll look you up if we ever make it to Eleuthera!
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  • November 26, 2015

    Oh hun I am SO sorry this happened to you but I applaud your effort to try and be diplomatic in the way you tell the story. You have every single right to be mad. No one should have that happen for their wedding, no matter who they are.
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  • November 27, 2015

    You know how I feel about all this wedding drama, as while I was on the other side of the world I was there in spirit (and via text message!) I am heartbroken that one of the most loving, hard working and patient people I know did not get the day they worked, saved and dreamed for.

    It does make my blood boil to read comments that are dismissive or seem to shame you for sharing an accurate and diplomatic account of your own experiences. It’s not your job to promote the Bahamas as a destination (not anymore, anyway!) though as so many have chimed in, your infectious love for the place is what made them visit in the first place. You are entitled to share your story and don’t let anyone guilt you for your feelings of regret and sadness over what was quite literally robbed from you.

    Love you, girl.
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  • November 28, 2015
    Paul

    Please allow me as a native Bahamian whose people have lived here since the 1640’s to apologize for the kind of treatment that you received at the hands of an irresponsible (and apparently dishonest) property owner.

    In my opinion you deserve not only an apology but a full refund of your money. However don’t hold your breath for either.

    I strongly suggest that you sue the hotel owner and if possible do so in the USA. I have no idea who they are but if they are Americans you may have some recourse there.

    At the very least report this to the Ministry of Tourism as suggested by others. I am going to repost to help you get the story out and will try to copy it out the TA article to the MOT website or FB page.

    • November 29, 2015

      Thank you so much for the encouragement, Paul, and for sharing our story. We have still not heard a word from Bahama Beach Club on our requests for refund or even apology, so no progress to report. I’ll keep you posted if that changes!
      Angie Away recently posted..8 Things To Do Onboard The Rocky MountaineerMy Profile

  • December 01, 2015

    Sorry to hear it, my friend. I wish you and your handsome honey many decades of marital bliss! <3 <3

  • December 06, 2015

    The response to the review on tripadvisor is astonishing. If the hurricane caused the issue they should have reported to you immediately that your venue was hit by a hurricane. It’s unconscionable that he would throw deaths from the hurricane in your face to make himself look better and make you feel bad. Wow. Unbelievable. Grrrr.
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    • December 07, 2015
      Paul

      I wish there were a way I could respond to his comments on trip advisor because

      1. The hurricane never went anywhere near Abaco and
      2. The work being done has nothing to do with hurricane preparation. Those are property renovations.

      I have live in The Bahamas all my life (61 years) and have seen numerous hurricanes and I simply know better.

  • December 07, 2015

    Oh. My. God. This sounds like the most stressful experience on the planet, let alone a wedding story. I just got married and even stupid, small things that don’t matter stressed me out. I can’t possibly imagine how you handled it.
    But these stories MAKE your life! Imagine telling your children, your grandchildren, your friends and web about how your love and relationship overcame such a catostrophic wedding week. Your kids will giggle, your friends will cheers you and ultimately, you’ll make money with this story. Don’t worry, you’ll end up on top.
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  • December 14, 2015

    Hi, Angie… What a tale! At least nobody robbed you (literally, that is) like the folks who got married in Nassau. What were they thinking? In Abaco you can expect better results and it’s a shame your experience did not live up at all to the experience of hundreds (probably thousands by now) of couples who have gotten married in Abaco. To whit: my wife, Cathy and I were married in September,1998 on Green Turtle Cay. What? In the middle of hurricane season!? Lucky, I guess. But it was 90+ degrees. Vernon Malone brought our wedding cake from Hope Town and the beautifully tiered centerpiece melted (after two ferries and a taxi ride) getting there. He spent half an hour or so brilliantly rebuilding it in the tiny, hot kitchen of the New Plymouth Inn. We were married in the garden and no one fainted from heatstroke, but there wasn’t enough room in the dining area for all the guests, including my dear friends Chris and Peggy Thompson, and their two beautiful young daughters, one of whom was our flower girl. I treated them to dinner at a restaurant down the street. Some of the guests also wore hand-me-down attire because their luggage didn’t arrive. There’s more. But… all in all it was great and we will never stop talking about our wedding day (we got our marriage certificate from the commissioner’s office in Marsh Harbour, by the way)…..not to mention stuff that happened on our honeymoon in Hope Town. But that’s another story. I am, in fact, preparing to do a feature on honeymooning in Abaco for Abaco Life magazine. I do wish you guys the best. I too have visited and written about almost every island in The Bahamas, and while I like them all, Abaco can’t be beat.

    Jim Kerr
    Editor/Publisher
    Abaco Life

  • December 15, 2015

    Oh my god, that’s awful. I remember when Laura and I got married in the Bahamas a number of years ago we felt powerless as a lot of details were organized very last minute, but it did some together for us. I feel awful for you.
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  • December 15, 2015

    What a total disaster. I’m so glad that you shared this because I certainly will never visit this resort, I will never recommend it to any of my friends, and I’ll share your blog post far and wide to make sure that no one else goes here!
    Lauren recently posted..How I Afford to Travel So MuchMy Profile

  • December 16, 2015

    You should report the TripAdvisor review take down to the FTC.

  • January 03, 2016

    Wow, I was shocked to read this! I’ve actually stayed at a resort in Mexico after it had actually been hit by a hurricane and was still under construction and only partially re-opened. The manager and staff were phenomenal at keeping us informed of the status of the hotel before we flew down and worked tirelessly to make sure we enjoyed our time there even though they weren’t fully functioning. I can’t imagine resorts doing any less, especially when a wedding is involved. I hope you are able to get everything resolved.
    Natalie recently posted..Packing for Christmas in Palm SpringsMy Profile

  • January 06, 2016
    Camella K.

    Hi Angie! I found this story and your website through a link on Kristin Luna’s blog. I, too, had a disaster of a wedding, but, in my case, it wasn’t my venue’s fault.

    Anyway, I am so sorry this happened to you. I am glad you posted your story here as a way to warm future brides away from Bahama Beach Club. I find the owner’s response blaming the hurricane-that-never-hit absolutely appalling. I, for one, would never want to give my money to such a person. Even if the construction is over, I would never visit BBC!

    Most of all, I’m distressed by how easily the owner of Bahama Beach Club was able to get TripAdvisor to remove all these negative reviews posted by you and your guests. I have been a long-time TripAdvisor user (my account says I’ve been a member since May, 2006–so nearly ten years!!), have written many reviews on there, and have booked many vacation homes and hotels through TripAdvisor. This experience really makes me question how much I can use them in the future! If it is so easy to get truthful TripAdvisor reviews removed, that doesn’t speak well of a website that is supposed to feature real reviews from real people.

    I hope that you and your guests can get all of your reviews re-posted onto the TripAdvisor site. I also wish that TripAdvisor had a way for you to respond to the owner’s false replies on your truthful review!

    I am so sorry Bahama Beach Club stole away your special wedding vacation week.

    • January 13, 2016

      Thank you, Camella. You’re so sweet to reply & I appreciate your encouragement! So far, the lie-filled response from the owner is up despite it being reported by dozens of people as inappropriate. I think it’s time for me to call it a day on TripAdvisor!

  • January 08, 2016

    Completely disgusting. I love how this man’s lies get more and more out of control in each successive “response.” He even tried to guilt trip you by mentioning hurricane-related deaths. What kind of a response is that? The ass is clearly trying to displace guilt and blame from himself and place it on you. I’m glad your story is receiving so much media attention. Hopefully it’s enough to shut this awful business down and teach its owner a lesson or two.
    Beth | Adventuring the Great Wide Somewhere recently posted..Sharing a Few of my Favorite ThingsMy Profile

    • January 13, 2016

      Hey Beth – thank you for your sweet comment! I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone so out of touch with reality. Either he doesn’t understand the impact of media coverage or he doesn’t care. Either way, he just keeps making himself look more and more foolish. Does he think people can’t easily fact check when & where a hurricane did damage? Oy. Thanks for reading!

  • January 10, 2016

    Wow, that is awful! I’m so sorry that you went through all of that. Disgusting that they didn’t warn you about any of it! Well hopefully this gets him enough bad press to close that place down.
    Grainne recently posted..Christmas 2015- A Family AffairMy Profile

  • January 11, 2016

    From one destination wedding bride to another….I cannot imagine your disappointment. Destination weddings are usual chosen because they are fun, exciting and less stressful than a traditional wedding. I cannot fathom how bad you felt that your guests trip was ruined and your wedding too. Maybe a renewal is in order. 😉
    Kara recently posted..My go-to “Sleep on the plane/arrive looking pulled together” outfit. My Profile

    • January 13, 2016

      A renewal is definitely in order! We want a redo!

      Thank you for reading & for your kind words. Didn’t get what we expected, but here we are.

  • January 13, 2016
    Laura

    I wish I would have read your blog a few months ago!! I got married on abaco 2 weeks ago. We were supposed to be married at bbc but changed venues the day before! We went to treasure sands instead. Bbc was not what we expected. Bad service. Lots wrong. I’ll be posting my trip advisor review too soon. Just waiting for the marriage license before I blow it up.

    • January 13, 2016

      Oh Laura. This breaks my heart. I hoped BBC would get their act together after our horrid week and I’m sorry to hear they haven’t. Thank goodness you were able to move to Treasure Sands! Would you mind if I emailed you privately?

  • January 13, 2016
    Laura

    Please do! Laura@stralavineyards.com

    If anyone is planning a trip to treasure cay ….treasure sands is amazing!!!! They saved the day and ninnion (manager) and staff were fantastic!!! They made the day perfect and every dis he guest of ours told us that it was the BEST wedding they ever went to.

  • January 16, 2016

    Holy me! What happened to you is AWFUL! I really hope you manage to get things solved, though I wouldn’t hold my breath on it. I have noticed that some of my trip advisor reviews have been removed throughout the years too. I never thought about it too much since in my case the situation was not as complicated. By all means, let us all know what happens next!
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  • January 16, 2016
    Amie

    Wow! There are always a few hiccups before any wedding that later become a funny part of the story but yours is a tale of disaster. It speaks to your skills and professionalism that you were able to salvage the wedding day itself.

    I read the glowing review of the BBC that you wrote on tripadvisor in March of last year. Quite the contrast to the experience you related in your recent review. While sometimes reality doesn’t quite add up to our expectations, this scenario is extreme.

    And speaking of things not adding up, I reported the management response to your bad review. My explanation:
    Dubious veracity. The “math” in the first statement does not add up: Hurricane Joaquin dissipated on October 7, 2015.The wedding party and guests did not arrive until 11 days later.

    • February 07, 2016

      I’ve reported every one of his copy-and-pasted responses and, funny enough, Trip Advisor continues to allow them on every new review that is written… =/
      Kristin @ Camels & Chocolate recently posted..Creative Crush: Erin Oprea, Fitness ProfessionalMy Profile

      • February 07, 2016

        I have, too. TripAdvisor’s rules are only applied to consumers. Hoteliers can lie, cheat, steal, slander, defame and invade privacy…

        • May 05, 2016
          Christina Ventura-DiPersia

          And this isn’t the first negative thing that I’ve heard about TripAdvisor. It’s why I try to avoid it myself!

  • February 07, 2016
    Stephanie Doscher

    Do you have any legal recourse against him for defamation?

    • February 07, 2016

      I absolutely do =)

      • September 20, 2016
        Anonymous

        Be very careful.
        His attorney has the same name (Craig Roberts). He is very influential and has connections throughout the Bahamas, not just Abaco.

  • February 22, 2016

    Horrific! I was looking for some information and stories about weddings in the Bahamas..now I know which place to avoid at all costs!

  • February 22, 2016
    Megan Overby

    This is so bad I almost can’t believe it! They’ve lied, taken your money, and now the hotel is trying to make you look bad – what are they thinking? How could they possibly think they’re making it better by lying even more? Sucks they’ll probably go our of business but that owner guy is doing it to himself. Obviously only cares about his pride and not his employees!

    • February 24, 2016

      We’re so sorry to read about this saga… Truly unbelievable!! We do hope you are able to be vindicated and receive compensation and a serious apology!
      We are glad you made it to Exuma and enjoyed your stay there. And to swim with the Swimming Pigs!!
      If you ever plan a return trip to Exuma please do not hesitate to contact us !
      Happy Travels & Building great Memories !

      When Pigs Swim™ team.

  • February 24, 2016

    We’re so sorry to read about this saga… Truly unbelievable!! We do hope you are able to be vindicated and receive compensation and a serious apology!
    We are glad you made it to Exuma and enjoyed your stay there. And to swim with the Swimming Pigs!!
    If you ever plan a return trip to Exuma please do not hesitate to contact us !
    Happy Travels & Building great Memories !

    When Pigs Swim™ team.

  • February 24, 2016

    What a delusional owner! I don’t know how contract laws work there but it’s a good thing that you have legal recourse – hopefully it’s not too expensive.
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  • May 05, 2016
    Christina Ventura-DiPersia

    It truly completely boggles my mind how owners can post such drivel and expect it to look good for their business. What must be going through his mind? If he has absolutely no couth (as he obviously does), how does that place even stay in business? If I ever see an owner post ANYTHING even remotely toned like just one of this owner’s posts were, I absolutely never, ever give that establishment my business as it is so off-putting. I am so sorry that you went through all of that.

  • August 10, 2016
    Mark Barrett

    My wife (I think, it was two months and 10 days ago, still no marriage certificate) and I made the same mistake you did- Bahama Beach Club. I have been waiting to receive said certificate before I post my review of them on Trip Advisor because I am actually afraid they will sabotage use even longer. While we did not go through half of what you did, I can attest to the fact that the people in charge of this establishment are unorganized, dishonest, and truly apathetic to any problems their mistakes end up causing. To anyone reading Angie’s account, she is not exaggerating, this place has a big smile and a dark soul. You don’t see that second part until the credit card has been swiped. Angie, how long did you have to wait before you received your marriage certificate? They told us two weeks, then 4-6 weeks, then 6-8, now it’s 10-12 months. No tracking number, even though we have paid for fed ex. If there is anything I can do or offer to help you and your story, happy to do so. I wouldn’t recommend this place to my worst enemy.

    • August 10, 2016

      Oh, Mark. This absolutely breaks my heart! Sounds like Bahama Beach Club hasn’t learned a thing, and doesn’t care to.

      I’ve had several other couples reach out to say the same since our hot mess last year. It took a bit more than 2 months to get our marriage certificate, but that’s only because a former employee felt so bad for us that she rushed to get it done before quitting, knowing they’d hold it hostage. Another couple waited at least 4 or 5 months to get theirs, but that was with the assistance of the Ministry of Tourism. I am happy to connect you with the wedding director there if you like! Please shoot me a note – angieawaymedia at gmail.

      I’m so sorry this has happened to you!

    • September 20, 2016
      Anonymous

      Craig Roberts is the problem! He is a theif and a scammer. He unfortunately is very wealthy and well connected. He has the law and the Bahamian courts under his control. What a shame.

      • November 16, 2016

        To those whom have a bad experience,

        I am very saddened here of your hardship and the subsequent reply from Craig Roberts. We have been traveling to the Bahama Beach Club for over 10 years with nothing but great experiences. Unfortunately, Mr. Roberts feels free to misrepresent himself as the owner of the Beach Club which is far from the truth. He owns a couple of the condo’s and was the developer for the phase 5. He does manage the rental pool for those owners who which to rent their units through his company and therefore feels entitled to treat people very poorly. I can also tell you there are many home owners not renting through the beach club management and are available through Abaco Estate Services and VRBO/home away. There are many great people at the beach club and in Treasure Cay which is one of the most beautiful places on earth.

        P.S. Any of the independent owners would have told you that most of Treasure cay and restaurants are closed from Sept to Nov. 1

        • November 22, 2016

          Hi Anonymous,

          I agree with you that The Bahamas, Abaco and likely Bahama Beach Club are wonderful places filled with lovely people. It must be so challenging to have Craig Roberts representing himself as the face of Bahama Beach Club, since he does it so unsuccessfully and without regard to how it impacts others. It’s a wonder he hasn’t been run out on a rail given all the negative press his behavior has caused. If we were the only couple to face such hardships, I might understand why other owners have allowed it to go on so long… but there are several others like us who have had weddings ruined or cancelled due to misrepresentation and flat out lies about the condition of the property, so it does seem surprising that after more than a year, he still continues to represent the company on social media and TripAdvisor.

          To be fair, it wasn’t Craig who lied initially about the condition of the property and the availability of the two onsite restaurants – it was Jerry, the wedding coordinator. Have you seen the video I created with him saying everything was ready for our arrival and that there was no hurricane damage? As a veteran visitor to the Bahamas, I knew that we were traveling in low season and that certain restaurants would be closed during our visit. That was not a surprise. I was not aware, because Jerry Sternstein told me otherwise, that the onsite restaurants at BBC would be closed during our visit. That made a huge difference for each guest as you can imagine.

          Craig’s inappropriate behavior began after we attempted to express our concerns about the experience, and his associate harassed and threatened me after I published articles and appeared on television to tell our story of fraud and lies.

          I’m sorry that the owners at BBC are continuing to reap the rewards of Craig’s business practices and social media rein of terror. I know from firsthand experience that dealing with him is no walk in the park. I wish you all luck!

  • September 20, 2016
    Anonymous

    I have major Intel on Craig Roberts. He is a seedy horrible scammer. I have to remain anonymous at least on your website. He has pulled the hurricane trick MORE THAN ONCE. If you’d like to know what i know you can email me.

  • November 12, 2016
    Crystal Turner

    Hi! I’m Castaway Crystal, RumShopRyan.com girlfriend now fiance. We just had a horrible trip and he told me about your horrible wedding experience and even though we weren’t getting married, I could relate to so many things you were feeling. My heart goes out to you. You used descriptions that I wanted to write about our experience but Ryan was friends with the captain and I could not go into full detail. But I TOTALLY feel for you.

    It’s upsetting when you don’t get what you were expecting and never receive an apology. Plus having to deal with one disappointment after another is EXTREMELY difficult and a true test of endurance.

    I’m sorry your big day was ruined. I hope one day you can make up for it.

    Sincerely,
    Crystal Turner/Castaway Crystal.

    • November 22, 2016

      Thank you, Crystal! And congrats on the engagement – you found a good one! Sad to hear that your last trip wasn’t all it should’ve been. There’s just nothing more disappointing than that. We just got back from Kauai where we did a vow renewal & pressed the reset button. And now that the Bahama Beach Club employees have stopped threatening to kill me, life is good 😉

      Hope to cross paths soon!

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