Friday, March 29, 2013

Sandals Ocho Rio, Jamaica Part II

Sandals Royal Plantation 
If you are looking for a classy get-a-way for yourself or for a group, your search can come to an end. When I visit properties, I look for the WOW factor. Sandals Royal Plantation has the WOW factor from the moment you step on the property. 
Sandals Royal Plantation is an all-butler boutique resort. Butlers are expertly trained by the Guild of Professional English Butlers so they are ready to fulfill any request you can dream. 
There's more to do than lounge by the sea blue, aquatic paradise. For the more active person, you might enjoy kayaking, windsurfing, sailing, snorkeling, glass-bottom boat rides, scuba diving, or sailing a Hobie Cat. 
The fun doesn't stop on the water. Tennis, chess, volleyball, and Bocce Ball are just some of the land sports. Golf Digest and Frommer's Travel Guide have named this Par 71, 18-hole Sandals' Golf course among Jamaica's best courses. 
There is plenty to do on this resort from water sports, to land sports, to dining in 4 distinctive restaurants. This resorts is right next door to the Grand Riveria (see Sandals Ocho Rio, Jamaica Part I). How does that benefit you? As a Royal Planation guest, you are able to visit and take part in activities at Grand Riveria (including their 16 restaurants...dining at The Reef is a must. See previous blog 
This is 1 of the 74 exquisite suites. It was very roomy and had a beautiful view of the Caribbean and the resort. The bathroom has a tub and tiled shower. Plenty of room to move around in this room. This is the Royal Great House Oceanfront Suite, one of the smaller sized rooms at 465 sq ft.

One of my favorite accommodations on this property is the Villa Plantana. The Villa Plantana is has 3 bedrooms with 3 bathrooms, a private pool, its own butler, private room attendant and chef. This would be a great accommodation for guests needing 3 rooms.

For additional information on this property or any other resorts, please get in touch with you.

Create memories, not regrets!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sandals, Ocho Rios, Jamaica Part I

Grand Riviera Beach and Villa Golf Resort

If you plan on vacationing in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, keep reading for some insight into the Sandals, Grand Riveria. This property is located approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes away from the Sangster International Airport, in Montego Bay.

March is a great time of year to visit Jamaica. The weather is perfect with a low in the 70's and a high in the 80's. Flights are relatively less expensive during this time.

On this property, there are two sections: The Great Manor and Riveria Seaside.

The Great Manor offers all-butler villas with private pools. This is a very hilly property. Golf carts are available to transport guests from their villas to the main lobby. If you stay on this side, you will need to take a shuttle bus over to the ocean side. The shuttle ride isn't far. In fact, the two sections are right across the street from each other and well within walking distance, but the shuttle service is convenient. While the butler service gives guests that extra special treatment, several people I spoke to wished they were on the ocean side.

Riviera Seaside is the property directly on the water. This is where the water sports are including sailing, kayaking, snorkeling, wind surfing, paddle boarding, etc. If guests are interested in becoming a certified PADI scuba diver, there is a pool designated for scuba training.

Sandals Grand Riviera Beach and Village Golf Resort has a choice of 16 dining options. I wasn't able to try all of them, but my favorite was The Reef Terrace. This courtyard outdoor dining experience was awesome and romantic. Dining at The Reef Terrace is a must.

Tips for this resort:

1) The Grand Riveria resort is hilly and requires walking. Females should bring flats and leave the heels at home. Also, the sidewalks can be slippery when wet.

2) The dress code for most of the restaurants is resort casual. Valentino's and Kimonos require evening attire, which means dress pants for the men, closed toe shoes, and a button-up collared shirt. They will turn guests away if proper attire is not worn. These two restaurants require reservations.

3) Kelly's Dockside is dining on the pier. This is only available for guests with butler service.

4) Sandals Grande Riviera has a no tipping policy except for butlers and spa therapists.

5) Have dinner early so you don't miss the evening events.

6) Transfers to the golf course are complimentary. Caddies are not included but mandatory. Carts, clubs
and shoes may be rented. Food and beverages consumed at the club are not included.

7) At the time of this writing, there is a charge of $15 a day for WiFi. Concierge and butler accommodations are not charged for WiFi.

8) If you want to be near the beach, be sure you stay on the seaside.

For additional information on this resort or any other Sandals and/or Beaches resorts, please feel free to connect with me. If you've stayed at this resort, what tips do you have to share?

Create memories, not regrets!

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Saturday, March 16, 2013

Running Sandals Grand Riveria

Do you ever have one of those times when you start out to do something and a situation arises which leads you down a different path? That happened to me this morning. After a hearty breakfast of a made-to-order omelette, fresh fruit (pineapple, kiwi, honeydew), and hot green tea, I decided to go for a run.

The Sandals Grand Riveria isn't the best place to run outside because there isn't really a running path, so I headed to the gym. When I arrived at the gym, the treadmills weren't working and neither was the television. After a call to the front desk, I was informed there was an electrical problem and it should be fixed in an hour. Not wanting to delay my run, I took the Jamaican attitude said "No problem," and headed across the street to the Riveria Butler Villas and Great House.

Here are some pics from my 2.6 mile morning run.

Rock climbing wall and Nicole's.

These butler villas have their own private pool. If you are booking 4 rooms, I suggest staying in one of these villas that way your whole party has the entire villa to yourself. How fun is that?

I'm glad the electricity was not working this morning. I was able to get out and enjoy Jamaica. Running the Sandals Grand Riveria, in Ocho Rio is a little bit different from running the Disney Princess 1/2 marathon, but it's a great way to see the property.

Get in touch with me for more information on this property or any other Sandals or Beaches all-inclusive resorts.

Create memories, not regrets!

Connect with me!


Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Sandals/Beaches Resorts 5 rooms = 1 free room

Wednesday WOW Deal

On Friday, I had the opportunity to have lunch aboard Lady Sandals, Mr. Butch Stewart's (owner of Beaches and Sandals) private yacht. While on board I learned of some great specials that I have share with you.

Typically with Sandals and Beaches resorts, if you book 10 rooms you get 1 room free.  For a limited time offer if you book 5 rooms, you get 1 free.

Need a place to hold your next family reunion, special event, or business meeting?  Why wouldn't you book a Sandals or Beaches (family friendly) resort?  Did you know Sandals all inclusive resorts could save you money?

What's Included?

Get in touch with me today for that family reunion, incentive travel, social club, destination wedding, or family and friends trip.

Click Here for the flyer that explains the promotion!

Create memories, not regrets!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Half Marathon Equals Half Crazy

Have you ever had those weeks where nothing happens? And then, you have one of those weeks where everything happens? This past week has been one of those non-stop weeks.  Here’s a peek at my week.

After six months of training for the Disney Princess HalfMarathon, this past weekend was the big event. Two girlfriends and I went down to Walt Disney World on Saturday and explored the expo. Excitement and anticipation filled the air as we saw princes, princesses and pixie dust.

The long day started before the sun rose. Sunday, we woke up at 2:30 a.m. for our 3:30 a.m. call time. We were in corral F and started the race at 6:10 a.m. There were so many participants (23,866) it was very difficult to run or even get a pace. We ended up running in the grass beside the pavement, and eventually we got back on the road. 

As a courtesy, slow runners and walkers were to keep to the right of the road, leaving the left for a quicker paced participant. Instead of dodging off the road every time I came up to a runner/walker on the left side of the road, I decided I would politely ask them to move to the right.  As I ran the yellow line on the left side of the road, I said, “Excuse me. Move to the right. Thank you!” Most of the time this worked except the occasional time when a lady had earphones in her ear.  And then, there was that one time when the lady gave me the finger. She was probably the one walking on the yellow line when she should have been the white line, which was on the right side of the road.  You can’t please everyone, can you?

The event was a success.  I crossed the finished line and had an incredible time. I participated in the Disney Princess Half Marathon for a tiara medal and got so much more.

Last night, the Mount Dora Chamber of Commerce had the ribbon cutting for my travel agency, located in downtown Mount Dora.  It was a fun-filled evening, meeting new people, networking, and sharing laughs and smiles with the community.  Be sure to check out the photos on our Facebook page, the Ribbon Cutting Album. 

The rest of this week isn't slowing down. Keep in touch to see what's happening in this travel agent's life, inside and outside the office.

If you’ve got a dream, pursue it!

Create memories not regret!

Connect with me

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Shore Excursions for Your Eastern Caribbean Cruise

So you've booked your cruise to the Eastern Caribbean and now you are starting to look  at the shore excursions.  Don't get overwhelmed on what you should do at each port! Here are my tips for making the most of your stops in San Juan, St. Thomas, and St. Maarten in this specially bundled package.


The past comes alive as you walk along the water's edge and continue down along the city wall. You'll visit the San Juan Cathedral, La Muralla, and the beautiful fountain sculpted by Luis Sanguino called "Raices."  The tour lasts about 2 hours.  If you have time, you'll want to visit the fort, which has a $3.00 admission fee.  Wear comfortable shoes. Bring a hat. Wear sunscreen. Don't forget the camera.


This tour takes you to various lookout sites. Your first stop is Raphune Hill and Beacons Point.  Get your camera ready for spectacular views of St. Thomas. Continue to Skyline Drive, Botanical Gardens and Magens Bay Beach. Magens Bay Beach, was rated one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in the world by National Geographic.  Here, enjoy two hours of peaceful serenity by swimming, relaxing, or walking along the shore. Once you leave the beach, you'll be dropped off in downtown Charlotte Amalie to enjoy shopping at your own leisure or you may choose to go back to the ship. This tour is about 4.5 hours.  Ask about the ability to upgrade to a zipline tour.


Who can resist white sand beaches that stretch down the coastline? This Dutch-side beach is family friendly, which means there is no nudity.  Keep in mind that a beach chair, umbrella and snorkel gear are included.  Food and beverages are at your fingertips.

I've already done the leg work for you.  To book this three-port deal, email me at:
Ask me about the 3-port Eastern Caribbean Shore excursion deal.

Also connect with me on Facebook.

Create memories, not regrets!