This review is for Mona at the Bridal & Event Lounge. She is the manager at Santiago Canyon Mansion.
This woman is the most unprofessional person I have ever met in my entire life. I worked with Mona for our wedding venue and it was an absolute nightmare.
1. DO NOT work with Mona she is unprofessional, unorganized, and a scam
2. If you love the venue and must book here, PROTECT YOURSELF - make sure to GET EVERYTHING IN WRITING! EVERYTHING! Make her cross out things that were not agreed upon. More importantly... things that she promises, HAVE HER ADD IT! or she will go back on her words.
We booked out venue at the Santiago Canyon Estate and met Mona about 8 months prior to our wedding. I called Mona and asked her if our date was available, will they be able to accommodate about 300 guest, and do they allow outside catering. She said yes to all of the above and said that "if it is ethnic traditions, outside catering is acceptable." Upon our first meeting at the estate, it was clear that she was unorganized. But I fell in love with the venue, it was everything we were looking for. As she was giving us the tour of the main house and the guest house. She then told us that the bridal party can stay at the house the night of the wedding and that her brides and bridesmaids usually stay the night prior and get ready at the mansion. The beautiful venue and us saving on hotel stay for our wedding party sealed the deal. We then started crunching numbers for our wedding. She sent series of quotes that did not calculate. From over charging to a final total that left a zero off at the end of the amount! This should have been my warning to walk away from any business with Mona.
My husband gave Mona the benefit of a doubt and arranged a meeting with her where we would sit and help her calculate since she was incapable of sending an accurate quote. We we finally agreed to book this venue for our wedding. She said great "let me check to see how much the fee for outside catering per person is" Excuse me?! Now that I tell you we will book and have signed the agreement, you throw in this curve ball?
This was NOT the only thing Mona did. Fast forward to the week prior to the wedding (this point our contract had already been paid in full) Mona emails me to ask if we will be staying at the guesthouse. I said yes, us and our bridal party. Then she says no one is allowed to stay but she can check if its ok for us to stay. Is this lady insane? She told us this during our tour. My mistake was trusting her and not having her add it to our contract. She runs circles and gets back to us that we can stay at 8 people max for an additional $1,000.
I am so upset at this point. She scammed us! In addition, she told me that my bridesmaids and I were not allowed to stay the night prior to get ready. This was a big setback for us because this is a couple days before the wedding. My makeup artist, hair artist, photographer, and videographer had already been
booked to arrive at the mansion at 6am the day of the wedding. There was not rationalizing with Mona. She did not care that she was causing us unnecessary stress.
On the day of the wedding, Mona was there. We had already worked out the logistics with her and it was her decision to have our guest drive down to the guesthouse and valet would get their car there. So we set up our sign in table, cocktail hour and all the pre-reception stuff at the guest house. ONE HOUR before the wedding, she changed it for our guest to be dropped off at the top of the mansion. As a result, our guest came into the main house confused, unsure were to go, and had to walk down a long steep driveway.
As for the catering on the day of, she also moved their location and did not provide them sufficient light, water supply, or a drain. The location was NOT prepared to have our cater cook on site! She allowed them to have one room close to the reception area to lay out their dishes and transfer food onto serving plates. My caterer told me that Mona complained that the food smelled.
Then she has the AUDACITY to ask them for lobster and shrimp. She brought a plate to them to ask for food saying she has not had the chance to eat. Our caterer told her no because they already gave her some noodles and the lobster and shrimp she was asking for had not even been served to the wedding guest! My
caterer told me they only had enough for our guest and Mona was being a pain all evening.
First of all, Mona was not hired by us, she was hired to manage the venue therefore she or her boss should feed her. We prepared a buffet style dinner for our vendors in the guesthouse, which she was free to help herself. She should not have asked for food even after the fact that she co mplained the food smelled. Rude!
If it's not clear, I would not recommend Mona to anyone. Save yourself the headache and stress.