Vacation Ideas

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by on February 22, 2012 |

Having been a skeptic myself about what the Dominican Republic had to offer me, I was hesitant to visit but knew that I could not accurately pass on information to my clients if I didn’t ever take the chance. Upon arrival into the Punta Cana airport, my skeptism turned to joy before even setting foot on the beach.

The Punta Cana airport is a small open air airport, that has been nicely redone within the last few years. Bungalow style buildings greeted me with thatched rooms, almost like I was walking into a palapa. As we entered the airport I was greeted by Dominican dancers and musicians. I was in love already.

The beaches in Punta Cana rival any of the beaches I have seen thus far, beautiful turquoise waters and powdery sand. Since Punta Cana is located on the eastern coast of Hispanolia island, you have the option to stay in hotels that are located on the Caribbean Sea or the Atlantic. The closer resorts to the airport have the warm Caribbean waters while the Atlantic waters are a bit cooler, a nice refresher on those hot summer days.  I recommend Dreams Palm Beach as a wonderful family resort, only 20 minutes from the airport. Dreams Palm Beach is a smaller more intimate resort, perfect for families with children or even adults who want to avoid the larger “multi-resort complexes”.

Each meal I ate was better than the last, the employees of the resorts were eager to please and I had no problem communicating with anyone. After years of hearing that Punta Cana had a horrible language barrier, bad food and was run down and downright scary, I must say they have made me a believer. Passing through the towns of Punta Cana and Bavaro while I was there gave me a unique view of what life is like in the Dominican, and while they are not the richest country, everyone greeted me with a smile, and an HOLA! I was reminded of the countryside in the US as we drove from resort to resort, and as you get closer to the coast the palm trees are amazing. I saw palms like I had never seen before. I would never hesitate to go back and am already planning my return trip.

Punta Cana is a small slice of heaven located on the beach. Book your trip today without hesitation, and you won’t regret you did.

by on February 20, 2012 |

Riu Yucatan is a deluxe beachfront All-Inclusive resort with a Mexican Hacienda architectural style & a privileged location in the exclusive Playacar complex, which is only 3 km from the picturesque town of Playa del Carmen. Tropical gardens surround a fabulous fresh-water swimming pool with a children`s section, jacuzzi and swim up bar. There is also a sunbathing-terrace with loungers and towels at guests disposal.  The Riu Yucatan is a great choice for families and couples.

Here is what one guest had to say about their experience.

”We stayed at the Riu Yucatan in September, having stayed at the Riu Cancun. The location is superb – right on the southern part of the beach. We found the food and the rooms absolutely excellent! The staff are what makes the hotel, they never stop working, always cleaning every thing in sight, but they are always smiling and friendly! I read previous reviews about hard beds and poor food choice, but can categorically state on both counts the food was wonderful quality, and loads of variety, and the beds were enormous and extremely comfortable.  The Riu Tequila is approx. 200 meters away and you can use all their all inclusive facilities. We saw a Moulin Rouge show there, which was very good.  Other people we spoke to who stayed there said the evening entertainment was excellent every night. (They also have a 24 hour Sports Bar).

In the Riu Yucatan grounds, due to the location near to the jungle, there are some wonderful, friendly animals wandering around the grounds.(One looks like a raccoon, one like a giant guinea pig and families of monkeys up in the trees. I also saw an iguana on a couple of occasions. All are safe and friendly, but please do not feed them as they have their own food chain within the grounds).

I would strongly recommend this hotel to people who enjoy a beautiful beach. This is an excellent hotel – as are all the Riu hotels we have stayed at. I certainly plan to go back again!”

So there you go!  In my opinion the Riu hotel chain in on of the most popular that we sell.  The Riu Palace properties are also available to those who want a little extra pampering!  Don’t take my word for it, check it out!

by on February 17, 2012 |

Looking for some pampering and relaxation before midnight feedings and sleep deprivation become the norm? A pre-baby vacation is the perfect answer!

Babymoons are designed for optimum pampering and luxury. These “last hurrah” trips for parents-to-be provide the perfect setting to relax and reconnect as a couple before entering (or re-entering) parenthood. Pre-baby vacations are one of the hottest trends in travel today, and with good reason. Moms and dads-to-be know that luxury vacations without sippy cups and bibs may be out of reach for a while, so they’re seizing the opportunity for one last romantic getaway.

Our goal is to help you find the perfect babymoon vacation. We researched many hotel destinations tailored to the needs and interests of parents-to-be.   I would suggest the Secrets CapriEnjoy a babymoon to remember at this luxury, adults only, all-inclusive resort. The resort’s setting is stunning – nestled between lush, tropical foliage and a long stretch of sugary-white beach. Located in Riviera Maya, the resort is only a short ride from Playa del Carmen. Secrets Capri Riviera Cancun recently earned a spot on the esteemed 2009 Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List.

Although spa services are not included in the all-inclusive rate, a visit to the resort’s 13,000 square foot spa is definitely worth the added expense. Featuring a relaxing lounge and couples massage suites, Secrets Spa by Pevonia offers over 30 different spa services.

Or what about the Iberostar Grand Bavaro in the Dominican Republic, adults only, all inclusive resort offers “Grand Star Service” with butlers at your beck and call! Of course, all your meals, drinks, tips, entertainment and standard activities are included in your rate for a hassle-free getaway.

Last but not least, how about the Le Blanc Spa and Resort in Cancun?  One word Awesome!!   This adult’s only resort offers an experience of sophisticated style, lavish personal attention, contemporary and minimalist decoration that create a exceptionally exotic ambiance. Flanked by Nichupte lagoon and the gorgeous Caribbean Sea, this resort provides 260 luxurious accommodations, a Spa offering the ultimate space for total well being, the finest haute cuisine at five upscale restaurants, and three outdoor pools including two infinity pools complete with swim-up bars.

Let us get you relexed before partenthood arrives!!

by on February 15, 2012 |

When booking an all-inclusive resort package you can be sure to receive at minimum accommodations, all meals and drinks (including alcohol) nightly entertainment, access to the resorts amenities, use of non-motorized water-sports and gratuities, many will also include airfare and airport transfers. Higher-end resorts may also include golf and scuba diving.

When booking a cruise you will receive meals and snacks, certain beverages at meal times, access to ships facilities, on board activities and entertainment. You will have to pay extra for soft drinks and alcoholic beverages, gratuities, excursions, airfare and airport transfers. You will notice that much more is included in your all inclusive resort packages than your nickel and dime me cruise’s.

You could very well get a Caribbean Cruise anywhere between $600-$700 for an inside cabin which is on average 214 sq feet compared to a resort at 485sq feet. Add on airfare, tax, port fees and airport transfers and your bill is over $1,000.00. that price is comparable to an all inclusive resort. If you want to drink soda or alcohol, go snorkeling or have a balcony or window your likely to shell out hundreds more.

by on February 14, 2012 |

The below review was posted by a Dream Vacations client on Trip Advisor on Feb 13, 2012:

We spent several days at resort earlier this month (February, 2012). Wanted a place that was easy to get to (Cancun) and not too far from the airport (25 minutes). Brief takeaway – very fine resort, great service, darned good food, especially for an all-inclusive, really nice room and amenities, nice pool, restaurants and bars. Only negative is a beach affected by fall storms and significant erosion.

In greater detail: Nice greeting in lobby of moistened towels to wash the trip’s grime off and cool glass of champagne to get us into the rhythm of the shore. Arrived about 2 pm and had a short wait before our room was ready but it was not onerous. We we upgraded to a “partial sea view” from the garden view we’d reserved and it was quite nice – don’t know what partial means but had a full view of ocean in three directions.

The room itself was very large – one of the largest I’ve ever stayed in – and sumptuous to boot. The bathroom has both a full jacuzzi type tub with shower and a standalone shower across from the tub. The hotel amenities provided were amazing as well – high end British toiletries and even toothpaste, shaving cream and sunscreen. The pool, not huge, was very nice and had the usual complement of poolside exercise and entertainment. Because this is an adults only resort the poolside activities were pretty quiet. Quiet is the key word here because the hotel was not packed by any means – never a problem getting a table in any restaurant or waiting for a drink at the bar.

There were stations set up during the evening outside one of the lounges and by a bar that made ‘fancy’ coffee drinks – flaming liquor and all – with just about any ingredient you could ask for. The lounge itself was very comfortable and always had a nice selection of fruits, cookies and candies available, as well as several wines. As an FYI, the hotel typically gives out $200 vouchers to be allocated toward spa treatments and ‘upgraded’ wines. We didn’t partake in either and the house wines were pretty good by my pedestrian taste buds. The lounge and lobby were also areas with wi-fi availability, as well as printer equipped pc’s to check email, print boarding passes, and the like.

As above, the restaurants we tried were all good, some meals were outstanding. Breakfast is always good at all inclusives but here the midday and evening meals were also of the good to very good variety. The seafood restaurant was close to excellent, the Italian very good, the seaside bistro ranged from okay to excellent and the steak restaurant was very good as well.

This is my second Dreams owned property (the other was in Punta Cana) and so far the chain as scored highly in my book.

Dream Vacations’ Customer: Morris from New Jersey

by on February 13, 2012 |
For the perfect family vacation in the Dominican Republic look no further than the Melia Caribe Tropical in Punta Cana. Lush tropical grounds will greet you in the Caribbean paradise after check-in as you are whisked to your room. This all inclusive resort will leave your family wanting for nothing with it’s fully stocked rooms including minibars, safe deposit boxes, satellite television, balconies or terraces and more. Check out an upgrade to the royal service suites for the added amenities of room service, private transfers to the beach, a private pool and beach area. With 13 restaurants, 10 pool, 8 tennis courts and daily activities from morning until evening, this large hotel leaves no time to get bored. Your kids will be delighted with the Flintstones themed kids clubs with organized and supervised activities for ages 4 months and up. And Mom and Dad can enjoy some together time while the kids play by grabbing a lounge by the pool or beach and just taking a few minutes to relax in the sun. If relaxation isn’t what your looking for, take part in any of the numerous daily activities offered throughout the resort. Shuffle Board, Beach Volleyball, Soccer, Water Polo, Yoga, Dance Class, Spanish Lessons, Ping Pong and Board Games are just the beginning of your fun filled Dominican vacation. With non-motorized water-sports included for free, get out there an enjoy that glistening white powdery beach and refresh yourself in the sparkling waters of the Caribbean. Nightly shows, theme parties and even a casino offer fun after the sun has gone down. From sun up to sun down the Melia Caribe Tropical offers budget friendly family fun. Call today to book your vacation!