Life In Cairo

Wedding Locations And A Lot Of NOOOO People!

As you probably all know, im getting married pretty soon. To be exact 3 months and 15 days, but hey, who’s counting!? Hahaha…. As you also know (God you guys are loaded with information!) I usually have quite a few problems dealing with Egyptians… Do not worry, it’s not just me, I figured out that most people in the world, including Egyptians themselves have problems dealing with Egyptians… My fiancée is Egyptian and you will hear him complain EVEN MORE about Egyptians than I do… Now that is ALOT!

So my first reaction when I realised I would be getting married in Egypt, was HELL YEAH BABY!!! I was going to plan the most amazing wedding EVER, in the most stunning outdoor location, with a pool and right on the beach, under the beautiful sun, with amazing food, and amazing music… It would be the BOMB (in a non-terrorist way!)… My dream wedding has always been on the beach and I felt suuuper lucky that I could actually make this dream come true…

So I started researching and found a beautiful Mövenpick hotel in Ain Soukhna, which was right on the beach, with an over-the-top stunning pool area, and only an hour away from Cairo… Perfection had arrived! I called them asking for the prices for a wedding…. Events woman was busy, she would call me back… Never did… I called again… Events woman busy, call back in 2 hours… I did and she was BUSY!!! I called a week later… I got through.. I told her I wanted the prices for a wedding… She sent them to me in an email… I got the buffet prices, after i SPECIFICALLY told her I DO NOT WANT BUFFET… So I replied the email, asking for a set menu price…. No reply… I called to check if she had received my email… SHE WAS BUSY!!!! SHOOOT me in the FREAKING face!!!! How does anyone get to plan a wedding at this place?!? I thought the only option would be to go there and threaten her at gun point to plan this freaking wedding! After reading through the menu, I also realised that we would have to rent absolutely EVERYTHING from outside the hotel: DJ, entertainment, sound system, lighting, dance floor, flower arrangement, tables, chairs, table cloths, candles… We would even have to bring OUR OWN GUESTS!! The hotel ONLY provided food…How crazy right…Anyway I don’t want to start the wedding planning with a woman who is sooo busy she can’t pick up the phone… Also having to get all these extras from other people meant we would be setting ourself up for a disaster… Imagine having a wedding and the DJ forgets he has a wedding.. You cannot just go looking for someone else last-minute in this area.. It’s in the middle of the desert, in between mountains and sea… I have not heard of many DJs living in the desert.

I want a wedding that is perfect, and in Egypt that means a hotel providing EVERYTHING… I don’t want a SINGLE EXTRA wrinkle due to the planning of this wedding… And if I cry on this day, IT IS ONLY going to be because I am so happy and NOT because the flowers didn’t arrive and instead we have to use meatballs as center pieces, and french baguette as my bridal bouquet.

Another thing was that my other half family completely freaked out when we suggested to them we would have our wedding in Ain Soukhna… THAT IS ONE HOUR FROM CAIRO!!!!! ARE YOU CRAZY!?!?!? NOooo that’s tooo far for your guests to travel… nobody will come… Inside me I was thinking, well if you’re not going to travel an hour for my wedding them I DONT FREAKING want you there EITHER!!!! And hang on a minute here…. MY WHOLE family is travelling a minimum of 7 hours by AIRPLANE to get to this wedding and you are telling me that one hour by car is too far… GROW UP!!! Anyways this is a wedding.. I’m not going to fight about something that should be a beautiful event..

So my fiancée and I spent a day driving around Cairo, looking at different options for our wedding.


We first went to Fairmont Nile City… This hotel is beautiful, located right on the Nile, suuuuuper high up, and STUNNING views of Cairo.. The option the event planner gave us there was a ballroom with glass doors that opened up to an outdoor terrace. Unfortunately the terrace was only on the 10th floor, so the views were not that nice… There was no green area, and the ballroom was very sad-looking… We then went to the top (25th floor) where the swimming pool was located. ABSOLuTELY BREATHTAKING views of Cairo… SO BEAUTIFUL… We were both sold and agreed this was the place… Ummmm sorry but how many are you inviting? 120 people max. Oh no that will not work.. This location is for minimum 250 people… GREAT!!!! So I told the event planner, no problem, we will split the venue into two and set up a wall that is nicely decorated… She laughed so loud… HAHAHAHAHAH NOOOOOOO that will not work… WHYYY??? NOOOOOooooo that will not work… Ummmm YEEEEEEEESSSs it will….. No minimum 250 people, because the area is so big that it will look empty with fewer people… OKEEEEY so we split it into two parts….. NOOoooooo…. Okey how about you go find a YES I CAN person working at your hotel and bring her here!!! Useless woman! So yeah I was not going to stand and fight with her the rest of the day about a stupid wall… Lets move on!!!

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Then we drove to Grand Nile Tower, which is also located right on the Nile. We got engaged at the Revolving restaurant that is located at the top of this hotel. I thought it would be pretty cool to have our wedding the same place we got engaged, and they have a stunning pool area… We spoke to the event planner. He gave us the prices… I asked if we could have it by the pool… OH NOOOO we just started renovated this last week.. I told him, no problem, our wedding isn’t until September…. HAHAHA he laughed hard… The renovation will take between 5 and 7 years…. WOAH… Okey I can’t wait that long… Either they have suuuuuuuper slow workers that do not know what they are doing, or he can’t speak english.. Aint no swimming pool in the world that has taken 5 years to build, and this one is only being renovated!?  Anywho we asked to see the ballrooms, and he said ‘go have a look yourself, its upstairs, byeeee’!!! WOW amazing customer service… So we walked up there alone and checked out some smelly, puke green, ugly ballrooms… No thanks!

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Then we checked out the Four Seasons Nile Plaza… We were pretty excited about this one, because their lobby is so beautiful that everything else should be too… Ballroom was gross!!!! Completely dark, humid smelling ballroom that has no view.. Actually that was a lie… You look straight into some dirty, dusty palm trees, with spiders growing on them… They also had an outdoor area beside the swimming pool. This area had a view of a really poor slum area right behind the hotel, and then about 450 hotel room windows looking straight down onto your wedding area! Hmmmm No thank you, and bye bye!!

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Next stop was Sofitel in Maadi. The hotel is old, but has a newly renovated pool area that is STUNNING (On photos) and the view of the Nile, with the sunset, looks magical… We drove up to the entrance… A security guy approaches the car… Where are you going? Ummm the hotel (or Zanzibar, whatever is closest!) We want to park, because we want to check out the hotel for our wedding… Hmmmmmm?!?!? How long will you stay? Like 10 mins… Okey go somewhere else and find a parking space… Let me just tell you that this is the Cornish along the Nile, main street with ZERO parking spaces and the hotel doesn’t have parking… Not an option, as it would be super stress for all our guests!!! Here we go again thinking about our guests!

Then on to Dusit Thani Lakeview in New Cairo… A beautiful Thai hotel, with super gorgeous gardens and stunning hotel rooms… The lobby is full of suuuper cool BUDDHAS, so I feel right at home! We only waited for 35 minutes for the event planner to MAKE time for us… The ballroom was huuge and had beautiful Asfour crystal chandeliers, but we wanted something outside, and they didn’t have that, and the ballroom was for a minimum of 300 guests. So we bought a few super duper macaroons, sexy cupcakes and moved onto the next hotel…

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The Renaissance hotel… I’ll tell you all about that hotel in my next post… This is getting too long, and I don’t want to bore you! But ill just let you know that this is the hotel we ended up choosing! But NOT without its difficulties!

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12 thoughts on “Wedding Locations And A Lot Of NOOOO People!”

  1. What a lovely informative blog you have. Just wanted to say a big congratulations on your engagement and upcoming wedding. Jenny (British expat ).

  2. OMG!I am soooo glad to read your blog , I am experiencing the same problem with the Fairmont Hotel Helipolis!!!Driving me MAD!!! I am egyptian but my fiancé is British. He thinks it’s unbelievable! We booked the venue in February for this August since that the woman that i got stuck with hasn’t sent me any info! I don’t know the menu, possible decoration etc etc Apparently her scanner isn’t working!!!I called and called , emailed..Everytime she says tomorrow! Haven’t seen it yet!! They are USELESS!!
    I do wish you a wonderful wedding though and all the best 🙂

    Mon from London (egyptian unfortunately! lol)

    1. AAAAh august is even closer than september, i completely understand your freak-out! we dont have a meny either… They are useless… The worst is that they are ruining the reputation of famous hotel names! Its insane, this would never happen in another country… But i guess you just got to deal with the bad side of Egypt to love the beautiful side! I wish you the best of luck trying to contact her! And wish you all the best for your wedding day, hopefully you wont have to eat koshary delivery! 🙂 Enjoy married life! Love X

    2. wooow !! its 2014 which means almost 1 year after your post and i booked at the Fairmont my fiancee is French and the woman is so unprofessional never answer her phone and hardly answer her mail and her name is Pakinam Please tell me at the end how was your wedding cause i am little scared ?

      1. Hello!
        Im so sorry for the late reply… I was away being pregnant and giving birth! Ooooh no im so sorry you have experienced an unprofessional wedding planner! Its the worst when you cant contact the woman who is helping you plan your wedding! Yes her name was Pakinam, the woman we spoke to last year… Unfortunately she was just as unprofessional then too, didnt answer the phone, said she will call me back, never did and was very unwilling to plan the perfect outdoor wedding for us… One of the reasons we didnt have our wedding there, because the location was perfect, especially the view! What ballroom have you chosen? When is your wedding? We ended up having our wedding at the Renaissance hotel, but nothing was exactly like we planned, or even discussed with the planners, but this is Egypt.. If you get what you want its a miracle! Congratulations on your wedding! Hope it turns out beautiful even though the woman you are dealing with is less than helpful! X

  3. Totally loved all the information you gave! I know it’s a year later but what hotel did you end up going with for your wedding? My fiancé and I are currently living in America and planning a wedding in Egypt! His family is there to help us but I would love more Info, because it seems u did your research! Do you still have all of the above info? Christina

    1. Hey Christina.. Thank you so much for reading my blog, im glad u liked it! Yeah I still have all the information. The only problem is that most of the prices and packages have probably changed. A friend recently checked out the Grand Hyatt hotel and the price had increased by 10000LE. But of course I have all the event managers numbers and info if you would like that?! And depending on our budget the hotels offer different packages… Id love to help you with anything you need… I couldnt even imagine planning a wedding in Egypt through my husbands family, it would be a disaster! And remember this is your day, so you want it to go your way, right? 🙂 We had our wedding at the renaissance hotel in mirage city… Beautiful for a small wedding, but like most Egyptians they dont listen nor deliver what you ask and pay for! Let me know how i can help and id be more than happy to send u some info! Kristine

      1. Hi Kristine,

        Sooooo happy to have bumped into your blog. You just made my day!!!!! Unfortunately I cant find the ‘next post’. So excited to read what happened next and where you finaly ended up having the wedding. I truely hope it was a beautiful day. I’m planning on marrying in Cairo in april 2015. I’m currently living in Belgium so it’s very hard planning from here. I’ll be going to Cairo this october (next month) to be doing some research. (that’s why your blog was super helpfull), it will give me more time to focus on other things and no reason to go check out these hotels as the Fairmont and Dusit were also possibilities. As is Kempinski Nile, JW Marriot, Sofitel and Renaissance Cairo Mirage. My main thing is that I also want an outside wedding (preferably with a unique view). It’s a MUST!! I’m not making my friends and family travel and spend so much money to have an ‘ordinary wedding’ and the only difference that it would be in Egypt. We’ll be having an intimate wedding with max 50 people. Another worry, it seems like most outside venues want you to stop partying at 23h, What’s up with that? I would love to hear more from your experiences and your big day! Very pleasant to read your blog btw, not only caus I’m getting married to an Egyptian but love the way you write. Looking forward hearing/reading from you!!!

      2. Hello!
        Awww thank you much! And thank you for reading my blog, im glad you enjoyed it! The post about our wedding is in this link:
        It was a beautiful day, but not thanks to the hotel, unfortunately, but as you might have experienced before, that in Egypt you never get what you ask for! We ended up having our wedding at the Renassaince hotel and it was mostly because of their beautiful outdoor area and that they were the only hotel that accepted such a ‘small’ wedding! Unfortunately they no longer do weddings that small outside. Now they rent the whole pool area out for over 200 people. Or that is at least what they told my friend who recently went there to ask about her wedding. We were also told to finish the wedding way before 11, but at this time there was a curfew, so we had to shut down the wedding early enough for people to get home before the curfew started… So i think we ended the wedding at 9/10-ish… But that was late enough, Egyptian weddings are exhausting, and with all the complications it wore us both out mentally and emotionally! But i totally get why you want an outside wedding, with the amazing weather in Egypt! I actually wanted a beach wedding, but it was too far for the Egyptian side of the family to travel!
        I would love to hear what hotel you end up choosing and how your wedding turns out! If your marrying an Egyptian, good luck keeping the wedding party under 50! Our wedding was 120 pax and I only 5 people! So just imagine! And congratulations on your engagement! Btw Kempinski is an absolutely stunning hotel and the pool area on their roof is stunning, especially for a small wedding, but 50 pax dont fit!
        Again thank you for checking out my blog! X

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