James S · Married on 12/29/2018
Karisa took out all the stress, it was perfect!
Wow. What an exceptional job Karisa (Event Coordinator) and the rest of the staff at the Double Tree Hilton in Grand Rapids did. From planning everything in the months leading up to, then the rehearsal to everything the big day and even a New Years celebration a few days later, Karisa was super helpful throughout the entire process. Since we had a winter wedding and there was more availability, Karisa was able to give us her full attention. That said, she had a wedding come up the week before ours only a month in advance and never once dropped the ball with us. We have every confidence she’d provide great service with the Double Tree to anyone any time of the year.Sent on 01/30/2019
Initially we were concerned that a hotel could as beautiful a reception as we wanted, but particularly in the winter it was perfect. The Double Tree completely quelled those concerns. With up-lighting provided as well as an included rep for chair covers (no extra cost for a wide variety of options they displayed at the food tasting). They also allowed for ceiling draping, offered through that same rep, Sitting Pretty for a fee. Having those contacts as part of the hotel takes out a lot of stress in trying to coordinate additional vendors, instead Karisa handled it all. Also, another benefit of staying at the hotel was having all our guests stay at the same place as the reception meant we didn’t have to worry about people getting home. They also allowed us to use the airport shuttle to get the bridal party to the ceremony as well as grandparents, all with a driver (don’t forget to tip!). Just need to coordinate with Karisa!
Working with Karisa was phenomenal. She set up a timeline to make sure we had everything planned when we should, which made sure we weren’t making all our decisions at the last minute (when everything else has to be decided). The chef was very helpful in working with us to make sure we loved our menu, but weren’t busting our budget to afford it. Throughout the entire process Karisa coordinated with all the staff at the hotel so that we only had to worry about one point of contact, very helpful. In setting up the room blocks we filled it quickly, but Karisa was able to expand it (IF she can do the same for you, she certainly will, it’ll likely depend on how busy the hotel is at the time). Many guests remarked at how surprised they were at just how kind and accommodating the hotel was. Extending and altering stays without upcharges or fuss. Karisa would send us the room block periodically so we knew who was booked, so we were able to make sure those far out of town didn’t forget. It was a tad difficult to understand the format the computer output it in the first couple times, but Karisa explained it for us very well.
For the big day, Karisa did all the coordination work with our Mistress of Ceremonies (highly recommend appointing extended family or close family friend to do that) to make sure everything was where it was supposed to be when. She also coordinated with our DJ to make sure he had everything he needed and when. We truly didn’t have anything to worry about with the venue on the big day. It was something we understood to be an enormous stress that, with the help of Karisa and the Mistress of Ceremonies, were able to coordinate in advance and had little to nothing to worry about on the big day with everything reception related. She worked with us to plan the table layouts: where cake/guestbook/wedding favors/head table(s)/DJ/Photobooth/Dance floor/etc would all go. We planned the table arrangements and their location in the room and the staff helped our Mistress of Ceremonies set them up. No one had to miss the ceremony or photographs to help, with proper planning and coordination they were able to set everything up with time to spare.
Between all the planning/coordination we didn’t need to be disturbed throughout the whole night. The staff were able to stay on top of everything and we were able to enjoy our reception uninterrupted. That’s really the most you could ever ask for with a venue, and the Double Tree crushed it. The food was very good, not at all your normal “wedding chicken”. It all tasted great and all of our guests remarked how impressed they were. It was delicious. The bar packages were great, with a lot of ways to manage. From open bar (paid per person or per drink), to cash bar, or a combination where certain items are included (e.g. beer/wine) and other’s cash bar (e.g. liquor) as well as varying packages for liquor/craft beer provided. It was easiest/most cost efficient for us to do a middle tier beer/liquor package and then pay per head and add a couple hours. All our guests had a great time, and the bar staff did a tremendous job. No one had any complaints, only more positive feedback!
When the night finally drew to a close the staff made sure to carefully pack up the leftover donuts (we didn’t do cake) for us. They also took good care of all the special wedding stuff we’d brought (cake cutting knife, bride/groom champagne glasses, etc.) and made sure we got it. They were all very kind and courteous the entire weekend. The hotel bar was great and offered a limited menu perfect for snack food when people got into the hotel and to hang out. Additionally the Ganders restaurant was great to have for breakfast (we didn’t do a formal brunch) and offers a menu as well as buffet breakfast that were both very good (albeit not free). The Double Tree Hilton in Grand Rapids was really a one stop shop for almost everything we needed. It lifted an enormous burden from us by having just one person to contact to coordinate something that may have otherwise been a lot of work.
Everything was 5 stars for us:
Coordinator – Perfect
Food – Superb
Bar – Superb
Décor – Beautiful
Staff - Superb
Alexandra · Married on 12/05/2015
Chris & I worked with Alyssa & she was a delight! She is top notch & covered everything we needed to have done. We loved that our out of town guests were able to book hotel rooms at a discount rate & not have to drive anywhere after the reception! Great reception venue. Thanks again!Sent on 12/06/2016
Colleen · Married on 08/08/2015
The Hilton was the perfect place for my husband and I to have out reception! Having just changed over to a DoubleTree we felt the accommodations for our guests and the space itself was new, fresh, and beautiful! Working with Alyssa was so easy. She is incredibly professional and VERY on top of everything. I cannot say enough great things about her. She was very helpful in the entire planning process and we felt she went out of her way to make our special day even more special. Perhaps the greatest thing she did for us was on Friday morning (wedding on Saturday) we dropped off all our centerpieces, decorations for the room, cakes, etc. and they set up EVERYTHING for us--the room looked amazing on Saturday. When we looked at other venues that wasn't necessarily included or you had to pay extra. We felt very cared for the entire process! Plus we got discounted rooms for our guests and after the reception they could just walk upstairs instead of having to drive.Sent on 10/09/2015
Also, I'm gluten free as well as some other family members/guests and they accommodated very nicely for any and all food allergies!
Emily · Married on 07/10/2010
The Hilton did a fantastic job hosting our wedding reception / celebration. We started planning our wedding about a year and a half prior to our date and found that the Hilton dates were already getting booked up for the next year! (So, book early if you're intersted) The staff there was always very helpful and friendly and seemed interested in our requests and in making our day perfect. Sometimes there were some delays in responses or periods in which we didn't communicate very often, but as other peoples' reviews mention.... immediately before the wedding and the day of - everyone was on the ball and everything ran extremely smoothly according to plan. (In fact, our event coordinator, as well as the person standing in for the even coordinator on our wedding day, was able to meet with us the Thursday prior to the wedding and run through all the details and plan / timeline for the night)Sent on 07/29/2010
The food was delicious and well complimented among guests. The staff was very responsive and very helpful throughout the night. The room was set-up beautifully; we rented chair covers, and everything was set up fairly early on that day. They had a separate room set-up with food and drink available for the wedding party when we arrived (before entering the reception) and they were able to easily accomodate our arriving a little later than planned. They were very flexible in the menu choices and drink serving options (as we were working with their Diamond package). Only little issues were that a couple people didn't get gift bags (and some random hotel guests ended up with some) and that initially the speakers weren't loud enough with our video (but this was corrected upon asking).
They let us party hearty all the way up to midnight at which time they were extremely welcoming of us over at the Spinnaker Lounge - in fact they let us take the place over - we even brought in our own PA system and ipod so that we could continue DJing at the after party. They let us stay in the Spinnaker until around 3:00 a.m. without any fuss. (We also utilized the Spinnaker for a meet and greet on Friday night) Overall amazing day and amazing reception site.
Jennifer · Married on 12/17/2011
This was a fantastic place to have a reception in the Grand Rapids area. It was easily accessible and the people were very friendly and accommodating. We had a blast and our reception was perfect! Thanks so much Hilton GR!Sent on 01/10/2012
Abbie · Married on 08/07/2008
Great area. Great food. Great decorations. Everything was awesome!Sent on 06/21/2010
It was a tad on the expensive side but I suppose you get what you pay for!
Rachel · Married on 09/06/2009
The Hilton is a very nice, updated hotel with a gorgeous ballroom. They have excellent and reasonably priced wedding packages that include everything from a champagne toast to butler-served hors d' oeuvres and your cake cutting. This meant we were able to include a few extra things at our reception that we didn't think would have been able to before. They were very flexible in allowing us to change things around on the menu, add additional liquors, as well as other things.Sent on 09/29/2009
The communication was tough at times throughout the process, as our contact did not return emails very well, and there were a few times phone calls were not returned either.
On the day of, though, they did a very nice job - servers were nice, food was very good and we received a lot of compliments on everything. All of our guests liked their rooms, the front desk staff, and the hotel in general, which was a huge plus. I think they definitely aim to please, and would be a great option for your wedding as long as you are able to be patient with the communication.
Hillary · Married on 06/26/2010
The Hilton was extremely professional in almost every way. They had every detail under control, even ones we forgot about. The service and food was amazing and all of our guests complimented it. The only reason I am not giving them an A+ is because the coordinator there isn't great about communication which can be stressful. Keep in mind if you choose the Hilton, though, that even if he isn't great with communication he will be on his game 110% the day of and everything will go perfectly.Sent on 07/16/2010
Many of our guests stayed at the hotel as well and really enjoyed their experience, as did Andy and I. The rooms were very nice and classy. We also chose the Hilton because the Spinnaker bar/restaurant is there and it was a safe way for the party to continue after the wedding was over.
Jessi · Married on 10/18/2008
I loved the location and it was great for our out-of-town guests (close to the airport). The food was amazing. We were told that with our size wedding we might not meet the required amount of money the Hilton requires, so we added on services. In the end we spent WAY more money than we needed for the requirement and more that we had planned on spending. I wish that we would have had a more accurate idea of our expenses. And I would have definitally hired a wedding planner if I had known that the hotel/banquet coordinator wasn't going to help me with design/decor.Sent on 03/25/2009
Sarah · Married on 09/20/2008
My husband and I did a destination wedding and then had a home-town celebration at the Hilton a week after returning from our wedding/honeymoon. The staff at Hilton Grand Rapids was professional and courteous. I worked with the Sales and Catering Manager (Mara) and I was frustrated at times with what I took as a lack of concern on her part for my wedding. I realized, though, that I had gone into the professional relationship with Mara looking for the wrong outcomes. I was looking for a planner and coordinator for my reception, someone who would give me ideas for decor and everything else because I was completely overwhelmed with the choices and all the details. The staff at Hilton served their roles, I just needed to understand that none of them are wedding planners and that if I wanted that sort of help then I would need to have hired someone who specializes in wedding planning. Every request I made of the staff at the Hilton was met beyond my expectations, the food was AMAZING, the chef was extremely likeable and really fun to work with. We planned our own menu, introducing new dishes that he helped us come up with. In all it was a perfect experience and, now I know to tell other brides that if you want a wedding planner, hire one! Don't expect that the sales manager of the hotel you have your reception at is going to plan your event for you.Sent on 11/08/2008
Kristin · Married on 11/06/2009
I was happy with the Hilton for the most part as my reception location. However, things did get confusing. Things were not explained clearly when going over everything. The night before the wedding, we went to the Hilton to set up and get situated for the big day. No body was there that could help us with any questions, even though the event person knew we were going to be there the night before. The person at the front desk was very rude and helpless. My father ended up having to go out there before the wedding to rent another projector, because it was never explained to me that they only have 1 projector that they own. So it ended up costing us more. And they charged that projector to my in-laws debit card without permission, which it strictly said on their account they were paying for alcohol only. The catering people and event manager that were there on the day OF the wedding did do a great job, and I was happy with the way things turned out on the actual wedding day.Sent on 11/19/2009
juanita · Married on 05/09/2009
We had our reception here and it was beautiful, we did have a couple minor glitches...luckily fixable. When I went to check into the hotel the night before the wedding, they had no record of my reservation. A couple of my guests had to go back down to the lobby to get their "Thank you" bags after they had told me they never recieved them. One last thing, I had asked that "NO" alcohol be served until after dinner, that included wine, and the wait staff was serving wine to my guests. Other than that everything was wonderful.Sent on 06/03/2009
User2569976 · 2+ years ago
Things were great until Friday night and then Saturday.Sent on 08/08/2012