Sandals Resorts International has announced that Sandals Royal Curaçao will welcome guests beginning April 14, 2022!

This is the 16th Sandals Resort and the first Sandals on the island of Curacao. Curaçao is located in the southern Caribbean Sea about 40 miles north of Venezuela.

The resort is located on forty-four oceanfront acres, boasting 351 luxurious rooms and suites only 15 miles from the airport. The West-Facing Resort will feature some of the most spectacular sunsets in all of the Caribbean.

Sandals has not released all the information about this new resort, but here is what we know:

From the freshest seafood to the unique flavors of the orient, Sandals Royal Curaçao will offer a culinary journey with 12 unique dining options, including eight brand new cuisine experiences, three food trucks and Sandals first-ever floating restaurant.

The Duchess Floating Restaurant was constructed from a 92-foot authentic Dutch ship. It is set atop the sparkling azure seas and will be the ultimate dining experience.

You can also spend a casual night at the beachside food trucks, a Sandals first, offering delicacies from around the world, including traditional Curaçao fare, Spanish tapas, and Asian fusion.

The Dos Awa Pool is an infinity pool redefined. This island oasis where pools meet sea will feature expansive upper and lower decks which overlook the Spanish Water, for seamless, awe-inspiring views.


Sandals also mentions a “Natural Salt-Water Ocean-Fed Pool” Cut into the coastal rocks along the shoreline, the natural salt-water pool features a sand bottom and will be fed by the ocean.

When it comes to rooms, Sandals Royal Curaçao will offer fan-favorite room categories, in addition to two new luxurious suite categories, the Awa Seaside Butler Bungalows and the Kurason Island Poolside Butler Bungalows.

The Awa Seaside Butler Bungalows with Private Pools are breathtaking seaside bungalows nestled alongside the coast. Guests can admire the majestic beauty of the ocean from their private infinity pool.

The Kurason Island Poolside Butler Bungalows with Patio Tranquility Soaking Tubs are gorgeous bungalows are arranged in Sandals iconic heart formation around a semi-private pool and lush, man-made island.


Every bungalow captures the height of luxury with hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings, custom crafted king-size beds adorned with soft linens and plush pillows for the ultimate sleep experience. Inside, each bungalow is also equipped with a smart TV and a large ceiling fan to stay cool while enjoying fresh Caribbean breezes.

Relax in the separate living room’s comfortable seating area, which has a fully stocked wet bar with premium liquor and a dining table. The bathrooms are equipped with his and hers sinks, a large backlit mirror adorned with mosaic tile, and a walk-in rain shower. Outside, your private patio is also equipped with an extended sun deck, Tranquility Soaking Tub with privacy curtains, sun loungers, and a bistro set for two.

The entire experience is rounded out through attentive service from a personal butler and 24-hour room service.

Perfect for a prestigious trip around the island, guests in the Kurason Island Suites and Awa Seaside Bungalows can explore every inch of this Caribbean gem with a guided map to all everything there is to see in a stylish Mini Cooper, only available at Sandals Royal Curaçao.

Are you ready to stay at Sandals Royal Curaçao? Click here to book your incredible vacation at Sandals Royal Curaçao.

AMResorts recently announced it will open a brand new Breathless branded property – Breathless Cancun Soul Resort & Spa scheduled to open on December 7, 2021.

Breathless Cancun Soul Resort & Spa will be a four-diamond vibrant, chic and modern all-suite resort nestled between the Caribbean Sea and Nichupte Lagoon. This beachfront resort will be the soul of Cancun, conveniently located on the iconic Cancun strip in the Hotel Zone.

AMResorts bills it as the perfect place to visit for adults seeking a sophisticated and lively getaway and singles, couples and friends to discover the perfect balance of excitement and tranquility on this beachfront playground in paradise with endless possibilities.

This all-suite oceanfront resort will offer a variety of amenities and services including three spectacular pools, ten gourmet dining options, a nightclub, fitness center, and luxury spa.

To book your stay at Breathless Cancun Soul, contact me today!

One of my clients recently returned from the incredible Royalton Mystique Blue on Isla Holbox (pronounced HOLE·bosh). Known for its beautiful sunsets and calm blue water, Isla Holbox is about a 2.5 hour drive from the Cancun airport by car plus a 30-minute ferry, or even faster via a quick chartered flight. There are no cars on this beautiful and low-key island, so you get around by foot, bike, or golf cart taxi. 

Royalton Mystique Blue

Isla Holbox has a moratorium on development, so instead of big all-inclusive hotels, you will find lots of smaller boutique hotels. There are tons of great restaurants, from inexpensive and delicious taco stands to modern Mexican small plates, to fresh smoothies and vegan options. The island specialty is lobster pizza, which is made with pesto sauce. My client even took a Mexican cooking class and learned to make ceviche, shrimp tacos, and more. 

Check out some of my client’s amazing photos! Contact me for more information and to book your trip to Isla Holbox!

AMResorts, known for their collection of luxury resort destinations, has announced the opening of two new Secrets-branded properties in Riviera Maya, Mexico. The resorts, scheduled to open December 1, 2021, are located on a white sandy beach within Corasol, a gated community with an 18-hole golf course. If that’s not enough golf for you or your loved one, the resorts are a short five-minute drive from the Mayakoba, an 18-hole golf course designed by the famed Greg Norman.

Secrets Moxché Playa del Carmen and Secrets Impression Moxché Playa del Carmen will both offer a variety of luxury amenities, including:

  • Gourmet cuisine by world-renowned chefs
  • Three man-made cenotes (underground chamber/cave for snorkeling, swimming or floating)
  • Seven heated pools
  • One interior, beach-inspired pool designed for intimate gatherings
  • Close proximity to snorkeling, diving, and the famous 5th Avenue in Playa del Carmen, a 5-mile pedestrian-only walkway dedicated to tourists
  • Breathtaking rooftop sky wedding gazebo overlooking the Caribbean Sea
  • Contemporary sports bar to watch games, unwind and socialize
  • Expansive Spa by Pevonia® with elevated focus on wellness 

The names of the resorts are so similar. What are the differences? 

Secrets Moxché Playa del Carmen will offer 485 rooms, including the Preferred Club and Secrets’ signature Unlimited-Luxury concept. All suites will have luxurious rain showers, Nespresso machines, and large terraces. These gorgeous suites will feature exquisite architecture and the finest comforts that allow for private celebrations, cocktails, events and relaxation. There will be nine unique dining selections, including seven à la carte restaurants, one buffet, Barefoot Grill, and Coco Café.

Preferred Club guests at this resort will enjoy additional upgraded offerings, including large upscale enhanced suites. There is also a rooftop terrace offering magnificent views of Cozumel with a private lounge, bar, infinity swimming pool and exclusive restaurant. Preferred Club also offers an upgraded mini-bar and special access to Secrets Impression Moxché Playa del Carmen’s author’s signature restaurant for an additional cost.

Secrets Impression Moxché Playa del Carmen introduces the exquisite and highly unique Impression concept to the Secrets brand. Think upscale lavish suites, extravagant beachfront villas and a more private personalized experience for those looking for the highest level of luxury. The suites, which begin at 947 square feet, include a full marble bathroom with rain shower, furnished balcony or terrace with marble soaking tub, Nespresso machines and more. Some suites come with elevated concierge and butler service. In addition to the nine restaurants at Secrets Moxché Playa del Carmen, Secrets Impression Moxché Playa del Carmen boasts three exclusive Impression restaurants – the rooftop Impression restaurant, complimentary access to the author’s signature restaurant with a daily rotating set menu and wine pairing, and a beachfront restaurant.

Secrets Impression Moxché Playa del Carmen Rendering

Both resorts will offer green practices and will feature the CleanComplete Verification protocols on property.

If you’re looking for an all-inclusive vacation that offers sun-soaked beaches, elegant accommodations and a next-level luxury experience, contact me today so we can determine which resort is right for you. 

Sandals Resorts is converting two all-inclusive Jamaican properties, along with a land parcel in Ocho Rios, into three Sandals resort experiences under the Sandals and Beaches brands.

Sandals will convert the former Jewel Dunn’s River Beach Resort & Spa in Ocho Rios and the Jewel Runaway Bay Beach Resort & Waterpark, both acquired last year, plus beachfront land adjacent to the Ocho Rios resort, into three properties: Sandals Dunn’s River; an adjacent, 250-room Sandals Royal Dunn’s River oceanfront property and a new Beaches Runaway Bay resort.

Sandals Dunn’s River will undergo a “top to bottom” renovation. Sandals Dunn’s River will offer a total of 260 rooms including 48 signature SkyPool Suites, a first for Jamaica, which will feature a private cantilevered, solar-heated plunge pool with infinity edge. 12 Swim-up Rondoval™ Suites with many featuring a “Rooftop Terrace” will also grace the property – both signature Love Nest Butler Suites® for the ultimate in privacy and service; 10 restaurants including a specialty rum bar inside the brand’s newest Latin Fusion restaurant concept Azuka and 9 bars; 7 pools including 2 river pools and Red Lane® Spa.

The sister hotels will operate in much the same manner as the concept that Sandals developed between Sandals Barbados and Sandals Royal Barbados, with exchange privileges between the two all-inclusive resorts. They will be offering “generous” exchange privileges between the two all-inclusive resorts, including multiple dining and amenity options.

The Runaway Bay resort, located between Ocho Rios and Montego Bay, will also undergo “extensive redevelopment” becoming Beaches’ third Jamaican property. The redeveloped resort will feature 400 one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom suites, designed “with extended families in mind,” said officials. Guests of Beaches Runaway Bay will have access to Runaway Bay Golf Club and its par-72, 18-hole championship golf course.

The Dunn’s River property returns to the Sandals portfolio as Sandals Dunn’s River, the same name the property utilized when Sandals first purchased the resort in 1990. “Sandals Dunn’s River holds special meaning to our family because its history is the story of Jamaica’s evolution as a travel powerhouse,” said Adam Stewart, Sandals executive chairman.

“My father grew up on the beach in Ocho Rios and this hotel, the first of its kind when it was built in the 1950s, captured the era’s glamour and sparked his imagination,” he said. “When it became available, we jumped at the chance to bring the hotel back into the Sandals fold.”

Sandals has targeted completion of the new Sandals Dunn’s River for fourth quarter 2022. Phase II is the creation of sister-property Sandals Royal Dunn’s River, which will be adjacent and offer generous exchange privileges with a slated completion in 2023.

Stewart says the new Sandals Dunn’s River was the last project he and his late father collaborated on and is an homage to the natural beauty of their beloved Jamaica, with water pulled and circulated from natural reserves and the brand’s signature suites being a prominent feature.

For additional information about these three amazing new properties, contact me today!

Dreams Estrella del Mar Mazatlán will be located on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, across from the tip of the Baja California Peninsula in Estrella del Mar, a private gated golf and residential community just over five miles from Mazatlán’s International Airport (MZT). This will be the first Dreams Resorts & Spas in Mazatlan – the destination known as the “Pearl of the Pacific.”

Features of the 350-room resort include:

  • An elegant design with locally sourced materials, highlighting the natural beauty and vegetation on-site
  • 350 beachfront suites, including 29 swim-out suites and a separate adults-only section
  • A prime location along a central pedestrian walkway
  • 5 gourmet restaurants featuring diverse international cuisines
  • Multiple pools, an aquatic park and a lazy river, all of which face the Pacific Ocean
  • A theater and a convention center for up to 700 people, overlooking an 18-hole professional golf course

The property will also have an 1,800-square-foot, state-of-the-art spa and wellness center that will incorporate elements of the resort’s surroundings, including water elements and natural light, inspiring a connection to nature. The spa will also feature a hydrotherapy area with waterfalls, whirlpools, geysers, a panoramic sauna and a hammam, and all of the treatment rooms will have private terraces.

AMResorts has not yet provided a date of when Dreams Estrella del Mar Mazatlán will open.

For more information about this resort or to book your next stay at an all-inclusive resort, contact me today!

Sandals Resorts International has announced its plans to bring a luxurious, new Sandals Resort to the island of Curaçao. 
 
This marks a brand-new island destination for the Sandals brand and Sandals’ ninth Caribbean island to call home. Formerly the Santa Barbara Beach & Golf Resort, part of a broader 3,000-acre development, the resort will undergo a process to become completely “Sandalized,” bringing the opulent resort innovations synonymous with the Sandals brand to this stunning location. Enhancements are set to begin in 2021, and the new Sandals Curaçao will initially include 350-luxurious rooms and suites with further phased expansions planned. 

Conceptual plans for the resort include adding key elements for the signature Sandals experience, including new expansive pools, various 5-Star Global Gourmet dining options, and lavish accommodations, including magnificent newly constructed River Suites. Guests will also have access to the neighboring 18-hole Pete Dye championship golf course, two onsite marinas and 38,000-square-feet of indoor and outdoor meeting space, the largest on the island. 

World-famous for its vibrant culture, pristine beaches and coves, Curaçao also boasts spectacular dive sites and exotic marine ecosystems. With year-round temperatures of 80 degrees, it’s touted as the perfect anytime escape. The resort will have a positive immediate and long-term impact on the island and the people of Curaçao. In year one alone, it is expected to have an over $40 million economic footprint and an impressive track record on the creation of new employment. The resort alone will add over 1,200 local jobs comprised of 800 new team members and 400 local tradesmen and craftsmen. This will be followed by a positive economic ripple effect for the community extending to the local taxi and transportation sectors, wider supply chain, agriculture, increased airlift, and increased yearly tourism numbers – especially with the key US tourism market. 

Contact me today to get started planning your next All-Inclusive Vacation.

Back in July, I had the pleasure of staying at Couples Tower Isle. This beautiful all-inclusive, adults-only, couples hotel is located in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. This property was built in 1949 and was the first resort built on Jamaica’s undeveloped north coast. In 1978, the founder, Abraham Issa introduced the “all-inclusive, couples-only” concept to Jamaica, and the Tower Isle was renamed, Couples Ocho Rios. The property was again renamed years later as Couples Tower Isle.

While this resort has been renovated, the art deco architecture remains.

The Pool Grill – Open for lunch and dinner as well as late night food service.

I found many things to love about this resort, but the food was definitely a highlight! There were many restaurants to choose from, however with COVID-19, not every restaurant was open every day, so we had to plan our meals out to make sure we hit as many restaurants as we could. Reservations are required for dinner at most restaurants and it was super easy to make them the app for our entire stay.

We ate most of our meals at The Patio which is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They offer both a buffet (currently modified with a server plating the items you select) and an á la carte menu. Our favorite meal was at 8 Rivers. This restaurant has a glamorous 1950s era feel, serving classic food while incorporating local Jamaican and Caribbean ingredients. Reservations are required and a dress code is enforced. Dinner at The Verandah was also a treat! The website describes it as, “For those nights when you crave continental cuisine at its finest.” While it was continental cuisine, the chefs elevated it in both the fusion of flavors and presentation.

One restaurant that we did not get to try was Bayside. I heard incredible things about the casual and candle-lit Asian restaurant situated on the sea.

This resort is very romantic and great for couples celebrating their honeymoon or anniversary. They do offer nightly entertainment with live music and dance shows including resident band and cabaret performances, but the resort gets pretty quiet at night.

While there are garden view rooms, most guest rooms face the Caribbean Sea, many with views of Tower Isle. Tower Isle is a small private island for au naturel sunbathing. The beach here is small but private so you will not encounter vendors trying to sell you anything. During our stay, the water and beach were full of seaweed and there were red flag warnings, so we didn’t spend much time there. Luckily there are two pools, one with a swim-up bar that we enjoyed.

Every room features air conditioning plus a ceiling fan, private balcony or patio furnished with wide cushion seating and an outdoor table, large bathroom with a shower or tub, IPOD/MP3 player, satellite flat-screen TV, coffee maker, iron and ironing board, in-room safe, complimentary minibar that is refreshed daily, and nightly turndown service (the turndown service is currently on hold due to COVID-19). The furniture in the rooms felt a bit dated, but the rooms were clean and comfortable. The bed was so comfortable, we slept like babies.

Being a travel agent, I do have the opportunity to stay at a variety of resorts. Couples Tower Isle is now one of my favorites. The hotel itself felt special with its art deco architecture. The views were incredible and the staff was lovely! This resort felt like home to me. I think it is a great choice for a couple looking for a quiet, relaxing getaway.

To see more of this resort and the other Couples Resorts I visited on this trip, visit my YouTube channel and if you are ready to plan your next vacation, contact me here.

After traveling to Jamaica at the end of July and having such a good experience, I jumped at the chance to go to Cancun last week. Spoiler alert, it was quite a different experience. 

I flew from Grand Rapids to Chicago and on to Cancun. Both of my flights were full, in fact, over-sold. American Airlines was still implementing the same safety protocols — mandatory face masks, no in-flight service, and asking all passengers to remain seated during the duration of the flight. Unlike a few of the other airlines, they are not leaving the middle seat open. 

Other than the flight because being completely packed, it was fine. I wasn’t super comfortable, but I wore my mask and face shield and tried to relax. For this trip I was traveling alone, so I think that made me a bit more on edge. 

While in Jamaica, the resorts where we stayed were around 20% occupancy. There was social distancing and serious safety precautions. For this trip, because it was hosted, I was not able to select the resort for my stay. Our group of travel agents were placed at the RIU Palace Peninsula in the Hotel Zone in Cancun. 

The resort was at 60% capacity which was the government allowance at the time I traveled. This felt like a lot to me. The resort didn’t feel crowded, but felt very full.

RIU Palace Peninsula

During COVID-19, everyones comfort level is different and I understand that. Personally, I traveled within my comfort level and am pointing out the practices and protocols that bother me. In my opinion, The RIU Palace Peninsula did a lot of things “right”…

  • Hand sanitizing upon entry to the hotel.
  • Washing/wiping of your shoes upon entering the hotel. 
  • Thermal temperature taken as you enter. 
  • Social distancing markers at check-in and at the buffets. 
  • Plexiglass barriers are the front desk. 
  • Enforcing masks be worn in the lobby and when you order at bars (with one exception). 
  • Elevators were marked for 4 guests per elevator.

However there were a few things that I felt they did very wrong and these few points bothered me. A LOT.

  • Buffets were still self serve with shared serving utensils (I was told they were changed out every 30 minutes and did see them changed once).
  • Social distancing was almost never followed by guests, especially at the buffet where guests would come right up behind you. In my experience when I hung back, guests would cut right in front of me.
  • Tables were not spaced out and there were no outdoor dining options.

I had quite a few problems with my stay at the RIU Palace Peninsula, as did almost all of the agents that I traveled with, but that’s a story for another day. Don’t ever request to stay there because I won’t send you. It was that bad.

The good news is that I visited 8 other properties in Cancun and saw and learned a ton! There are many resorts where I would feel comfortable staying and booking clients during this time. I think that the biggest takeaway from this trip is that to travel during COVID-19, you need to understand the protocols of each resort and where they fall within your comfort level. This is why traveling during this time is so important for me to do for my clients.

Will this experience deter me from traveling again soon? Absolutely not!!! Having visited two different countries now within the last 90 days, I feel comfortable traveling at this time and hope to get on a plane again soon! 😉

Sandals Resorts are arguably the most luxurious resorts in the Caribbean. With 16 resorts located on Jamaica, The Bahamas, Grenada, Barbados, Antigua, and Saint Lucia. Their adults-only all-inclusive resorts are ideal for weddings, honeymoons, or just a dreamy romantic retreat.

Sandals 5-star resorts are a favorite among clients with their gorgeous white-sand beaches, savory dining experiences, opulent accommodations, unlimited refreshing beverages, exciting water sports and more.

If you would like to stay at one of these incredible resorts, contact me today!