Singapore — A couple who were supposed to be married in January 2022, after booking the venue months in advance, had to cancel their special day due to an alleged “last-minute price increase” of 37 per cent.
“Today, we were supposed to be married. But our wedding venue cancelled on us four days ago,” wrote one Marcus Lim on Facebook on Jan 8.
He explained that the venue tried to raise their price by 37 per cent at the last minute and “got defensive” when they didn’t accept the changes.
“We’re still hurting and in shock, but we’d like to share our story as a warning to all couples looking to tie the knot,” added Mr Lim.
The couple chose the particular venue, later identified as Turkish restaurant Arkadaş Café in Fusionopolis, for “sentimental reasons.”
Mr Lim shared that he first met his fiancée there and came back subsequently for their dates. They also knew the food attendants, noting they would feel comfortable with the familiarity during their wedding day.
Although they were acquainted with the staff, Mr Lim said they had never met the owner.
“The harsh truth is that your big day is ultimately a money-making opportunity,” he said.
Mr Lim mentioned that the owner, which he called Bob (not his real name), allegedly stood them up during their first meeting.
Bob had kept the couple waiting for more than two hours, ignoring their messages and calls.
However, when they finally met the owner at a later date, the couple recognised him as having been at the restaurant the last time. “He just never bothered to come over!”
In a Mothership report on Monday (Jan 10), Arkadaş Café issued a statement, refuting the claims made by Mr Lim.
The representative said they had initially quoted the couple a price of S$55 per guest, before a 10 per cent service charge, on Aug 31, 2021.
The restaurant then quoted the couple a revised price of S$75 per guest because they “finalised the menu” late and chose to customise individual meals for “different preferences of the guests.”
It was reported that the different pricing was due to the customisation of the menu. However, Mr Lim wondered why this was not indicated when they had their menu selection and tasting session.
In his post, Mr Lim also highlighted the “strange tension” between Bob and his staff, resulting in poor team dynamics while preparing for the event.
After indicating that the venue had cancelled their reservation, Mr Lim encouraged others to “always leave a paper trail” when engaging in such matters.
“This meant that when Bob tried to gaslight us by claiming we’d never confirmed that we wanted to host our wedding at his café, we had plenty of written examples to fall back on.”
The café told Mothership that there was nothing to cancel as they did not receive any deposit so far, which Mr Lim agreed with in his post, noting they “could have done better” and made a downpayment.
“While we’d gotten and accepted the quotation way back last August, we were brushed off every time we asked about whether we needed to make a down payment. This made it easier for [the owner] to cancel on us because he believed that we needed a signed contract to hold an agreement up in court,” he said.
The couple apologised to friends and family, as well as vendor partners, for having to cancel on them. They plan to take some time to rest and recharge before getting back on track with wedding plans. /TISG
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