Category: Caribbean

Barefoot Elegance: How Couples Stands Out in Jamaica

Posted By : Elite Travel Consulting/ 37 0

Despite the emergence of an array of new brands and products among all-inclusive resort properties, Couples Resorts stands out among the pack as the only brand whose very name is synonymous with the clientele it accommodates: couples seeking romantic getaways where they can create memories that will linger far beyond the vacation’s end.

In all, the brand has four Jamaican properties: two in Negril (Couples Negril and Couples Swept Away) and two in Ocho Rios (Couples Tower Isles and Couples Sans Souci). Guests enjoy 24-hour gourmet dining and unlimited premium-brand spirits and complimentary Wi-Fi, plus special activities including a sunset catamaran cruise excursion, water skiing, Hobie Cat sailing, golf, tennis, non-motorized water sports and unlimited PADI-Certified Scuba diving.

Couples Q&A

What distinguishes Couples Resorts from the other all-inclusive properties and brands?

Couples Resorts defined the all-inclusive experience in 1978 and we are constantly refining it. From our founding, our intent has been to deliver a level of barefoot elegance, amazing cuisine and almost limitless inclusions designed to delight and surprise our guests day in and day out.

Our product is so unique and occupies a niche within Jamaica’s product offerings that is very appealing—to our first-time guests, our large percentage of repeat guests and to me. We are not the largest, nor do we want to be. We offer an experience, a way of life that is truly Jamaican. We are authentic to our core. All we have to do, as a sales and marketing team, is provide the exposure. As one of the prior Jamaica Advertising campaigns stated, ‘Once you go, you know.’ Find someone that has experienced Couples first-hand and you’ll see the delight in their eyes.

Whether you are the GM, the president of a large tour operator, a travel agent who works out of the home or the front desk agent who welcomes a guest to a property, our goal is to deliver an amazing experience that is above anything ever anticipated. Everything that we do must be focused on the guest experience, which in turn produces a product that is second-to-none.

How does Couples Resorts work with travel agents?

From our founding, the success of the Couples brand has been directly tied to the success of thousands of travel agents across the globe. Travel agent partnerships are a key part of our DNA. And with one of the most attractive agent incentive programs in the industry, we are working on future initiatives that will be even more rewarding.

In your view, what are Couples Resorts strong selling points—in terms of what guests will enjoy most?

Family—which may seem like an odd reply. We pride ourselves by saying, ‘We never have guests, we have family.’ Our property teams and countless guest volunteers work year-around to give back to the country of Jamaica through medical missions and adopting schools. Lee Issa, our chairman, with the soul of Jamaica pumping through his veins, is on property every day for hours, mixing and talking to countless guests. Our staff has developed countless bonds through the years with thousands of guests, each time welcoming them back by name.

Lee Issa, our chairman—with the soul of Jamaica pumping through his veins—is on property every day for hours, mixing and talking to countless guests. Our staff has developed countless bonds through the years with thousands of guests, each time welcoming them back by name. Our property teams and countless guest volunteers work year-around to give back to the country of Jamaica through medical missions and adopting schools.

How would you describe the typical Couples guest in terms of demographics and vacation styles?

First and foremost, our guests are anything but typical and range across all demographics. We have many guests from many walks of life, and they all come together for ‘One Love’ of Jamaica, and its people and a resort experience that is unique and unmatched … to celebrate a marriage or renew vows—the list goes on and on.

A Healthy Stay At Breezes Resort & Spa Bahamas

Posted By : Elite Travel Consulting/ 29 0

A stay at an all-inclusive beach resort doesn’t need to be something your body hates you for the week after. We all know the deal. All you can drink. All you can eat. Minimal exercise. Maximum tanning. But the Caribbean Tourism Organization is trying to change that in naming 2018 the “Year of Wellness and Rejuvenation”.

“For those who focus on renewing body and spirit, the options are virtually endless; from beachfront workouts and yoga retreats, to wellness resorts and spa treatments, the notion of being rejuvenated in the Caribbean is one more reason to let us pamper you in 2018,” said Hugh Riley, Caribbean Tourism Organization secretary general, during a press conference announcing the campaign.

In conjunction with this campaign, whose efforts include showcasing why the Caribbean should be travelers’ number one choice of destination for wellness and rejuvenation, Breezes Resort & Spa Bahamas hosted its first ever on-site Wellness Week this pas April.

In partnership with Crunch Fitness and Dr. Rachel Goldman, a licensed psychologist specializing in health and wellness, Breezes Bahamas encouraged its guests to embrace healthy living through complimentary daily exercise classes, workshops, cooking demonstrations and more.

Led by encouraging, high energy certified Crunch Fitness instructors, classes ranged from relaxing and meditative to intense and heart pounding. In the latter category were classes that included Rainbow Meditation which encourages guests to find inner peace inspired by the chakras (energy centers) of the body and their related colors and Rise & Flow Yoga, a class incorporating sun salutes geared toward bringing energy into your day.

Sweat-inducing classes featured the popular TRX® session with ropes to push, pull, lift and lower your body through Spiderman moves for a total body suspension workout and POUND, a class that’s a fusion of movement and music where you drum along to beats with Ripstix™—weighted drumsticks designed to transform drumming into a rock star work out.

One of my favorites of the week? Silent Disco! Using silent disco headphones, you’re set to dance the night away to either ZUMBA®, Pop Dance Project or Hard Knocks (hip-hip and kickboxing fusion) while instructors lead fun workouts that get you sweating.

When guests weren’t working out, they were participating in cooking demonstrations led by Breezes Executive Chef Nigel Clarke and wellness workshops led by Dr. Rachel on topics such as mindful eating and stress reduction.

In addition to the Wellness Week, Breezes Bahamas offers a whole bunch of adventurous land and water activities available to all guests for free. Water activities include ocean paddle boarding, sailing and kayaking. For those who rather stay dry, on-site is a beachside jogging track, tennis courts, sand soccer field, rock climbing, and flying trapeze.

Of course, for those that want to simply relax, Breezes Bahamas is, after all, situated on a 1,000-foot stretch of Cable Beach. Powdery white sands and clear turquoise water makes it an ideal beach getaway destination.

Within two towers are 391 air-conditioned guestrooms including five suites, 28 Ocean Front rooms and eight Beach Front Patio rooms. Moreover, the resort features a piano bar, Blue Mahoe Spa, four restaurants and option for private beach dining, four bars, a fitness center and three freshwater pools.

A stay at Breezes Bahamas means you’re going to be entertained from sun up to sun down, and well after. Once the sun sets, the fun gets started with live entertainment including dance performances, comedy and talent shows and signing. Also on the property is the Hurricanes Nightclub, for anyone who wants to dance all night long.

For those interested in getting off the Breeze Bahamas property, the town of Nassau is easily accessible by bus. Head over to Twin Brothers for their famous daiquiris or my personal new favorite drink, sky juice—a mix of gin, coconut water and condensed milk. For food, make sure to get some authentic Bahamian specialties such as conch fritters, cracked lobster and peas n’ rice.

Itching to do some shopping? Walk over to the renowned straw market on Bay Street in downtown Nassau, a massive open-air market where you can find traditional Bahamian crafts, gifts and souvenirs. Just don’t get overwhelmed and be sure to negotiate prices!

Rates at Breezes Resort & Spa Bahamas start at $296, depending on the season.

Top RIU Spa Hotels: A Rejuvenating Experience

Posted By : Elite Travel Consulting/ 127 0

If you are looking for more than just some sunny days at the beach, we can offer you exactly what you are looking for. Many of our hotels offer beauty and body treatments to care for your body and mind. We work together with experts on special health programs that are run in comfortable and elegant facilities. So we have created a list of our top 10 hotels with the best spas and wellness centers at the world’s most popular destinations. Choose the dates of your next vacation, come and relax, and we will take care of the rest.

BREATHE, MEDITATE AND RELAX; LET YOURSELF BE LOOKED AFTER

Many RIU hotels have spas, health and wellness centers or thalassotherapy facilities to give you some precious moments of relaxation during your stay. All of them are designed so that when you reach your destination you can enjoy the best treatments at the hands of true professionals in modern and elegant facilities.

Programs range from classic beauty treatments and relaxing massages to oriental relaxation. If our guests prefer something more, or want to spend a special day, for example during their honeymoon, there are special packages for weddings and newlyweds. Come and see our facilities and let yourself be looked after!

 

1: Hotel Riu Palace Aruba
As well as views of Palm Beach, this hotel also a top-quality spa. The luxury service and comfort of its facilities make this palace an ideal place to spend a dream vacation.

2: Hotel Riu Tikida Palmeraie
Only those who have visited the hotel can imagine the sensation of well-being that surrounds the place. So we invite you to experience for yourself this little oasis in the middle of the city of Marrakech. Its spa can give various body treatments that will make you forget about all the strains of daily living.

3: Hotel Riu Kaya Palazzo
This modern and sophisticated hotel has one of the most striking interior decors in Antalya. The peace and relaxation offered by day and the display of colored light by the pool at night make this an unforgettable place. It offers a range of beauty and wellness treatments and very comfortable rooms.

4: Hotel Riu Tikida Beach
If you have never visited a hamam, we suggest you try an authentic one at the Hotel Riu Tikida Beach. Morocco is well known, among other things, for its hamams, which are steam baths with curative and purifying properties. This is certainly one of our best wellness centers on the Agadir coast.

5: Hotel Riu Tikida Garden
If, on the other hand, you travel to the center of Marrakech, you will be able to enjoy some time at the hotel spa. This is a hotel that has managed to combine elements of traditional Moroccan culture with a contemporary look. It is a true oasis in the center of Marrakech city. Its spa offers guests various treatments, such as massages, facial treatments and water jets.

6: Hotel Riu Palace Costa Rica
If, as well as discovering the marvels of Costa Rica’s wild environment, you are looking for a place to relax, this hotel should be your destination. Its excellent facilities and spectacular surroundings will make your stay unforgettable. Revel in the tropical climate and heavenly beach where you find yourself.

7: Hotel Riu Palace Jamaica
In Jamaica you can find everything a tourist is looking for: good music, local and international cuisine and fun, 24 hours a day. Furthermore, after a full day, what could be better than this palace hotel’s spa? Relaxing massages, whirlpool baths, sauna and a range of treatments. As the locals say: ‘Don’t worry, be happy’.

8: Hotel Riu Palace Peninsula
This recently built hotel is located by a beach lapped by turquoise waters, and it offers guests a very high quality service. It has a full wellness center with a range of facial and body treatments. Furthermore, this resort has taken tranquility to a new level, and boasts Adults Only Villas, rooms exclusively for adults looking for a relaxed stay, away from the bustle of Cancun.

About RIU Hotels & Resorts

RIU Hotels & Resorts offers you a wide variety of hotels in the world’s best destinations so that you can enjoy unforgettable holidays. At our hotels, you’ll find complete facilities where you can enjoy an extensive gastronomic offer, the best entertainment and a host of exclusive services that characterize the company.

Choose one of our holiday, urban, family or adults-only hotels and enjoy an escape to your favorite destination. Enjoy unique experiences with RIU!  Learn More…..

 

4 Reasons You Should Still Travel to the Caribbean

Posted By : Elite Travel Consulting/ 133 0

Hurricanes Irma and Maria attacked the Caribbean as if it was their mission this September, leaving billions of dollars of damage in their wake. Reports say that Barbuda (sister island of Antigua) is no longer inhabitable, and a tragic news story about Puerto Rico comes out every day.

And, let’s not forget about St. Maarten and Dominica, where as much as 90 percent of the islands were destroyed.

While all the bad news may make you wonder if the Caribbean is worth visiting, it’s important to note that there are still plenty of reasons to visit the selection of islands that make up this part of the world. Before you eschew the Caribbean and book elsewhere, consider these reasons to visit anyway:

Plenty of Islands Are Outside the Hurricane Belt

If you’ve been dreaming of visiting the Caribbean but are worried about running into damage that might ruin your trip, keep in mind that plenty of Caribbean islands are outside the hurricane belt—and that many didn’t encounter a hurricane at all.

Barbados, Curacao, Grenada and many other islands aren’t anywhere near the typical hurricane zone. Many others like Jamaica and Grand Cayman saw no damage at all while some resort destinations like the Dominican Republic and St. Kitts/Nevis saw only a passing blow.

Damaged Islands Need Your Money and Help

Since many Caribbean islands rely on tourism as their main source of income, actually visiting an impacted island is one of the best ways you can help.

By spending your money at hotels and restaurants, you’re putting cash right into the hands of people who can desperately use it.

 

Many Damaged Islands Are Already Back Up and Running

Some islands that noted damage were able to turn around and reopen to tourists rather fast.

Antigua, for example, is mostly open and just as beautiful as ever, its CEO of the local tourism board told The Telegraph. Anguilla appears to be on its way back in business, and the islands that make up the Bahamas are mostly back up and running as usual.

The Caribbean Offers Any Travel Experience You Could Want

You could fly to Europe to experience Dutch, French or British culture, but several islands in the Caribbean offer European flair—and often food—since they are colonies of larger countries across the pond.

Visit Curacao for a taste of Dutch delicacies like bitterballen and stroopwafels, for example.

And, don’t forget that the Caribbean is more than just beautiful beaches. The islands boast mountains you can climb, amazing snorkeling, plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation and amazing foodie experiences featuring local ingredients like seafood and spices.

Hurricanes Irma and Maria may have battered part of the Caribbean, but the islands still have plenty to offer visitors. Whether you love seafood or snorkeling or giant stretches of white sand beach, you can still find it in the Caribbean.

And right now, they need you more than ever.