Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Caribbean Islands
Reload this Page > 2nd Honeymoon....need some help planning
Notices

2nd Honeymoon....need some help planning

Reply

Apr 3rd, 2013, 01:15 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 3
2nd Honeymoon....need some help planning

HI everyone,
I just joined this forum in hopes of receiving some help planning our 2nd honeymoon. This June is coming quickly and we cannot decide where to go. It will be our 10th anniversary and since our honeymoon were planning a trip to Europe. Since that fell through, we need some help due to costs.

The things we definitely "have to" have are:
Pretty beach
Good snorkeling available at our resort or somewhat nearby
Delicious food of all types
Things to do in the evening - dancing, piano bar....etc. possibly casino or parties
OH and couples only is a huge plus, although adults only would work too (we have lots of kids and need a break) LOL

I know this is pretty vague, and we are on a budget that is not allowing me to book my first choice which is Sandals Grande St.Lucia.
So, basically, we need something cheaper than that but with a lot of things to see and do ...like it has.
Can anyone help?
Thanks so much!
Holly & Garrick
Hollyanne116 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 3rd, 2013, 02:32 PM
  #2
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
I have been to Sandals Grande in St. Lucia and was not a good experience. It was completly overpriced for what you get and the food and service was not good. You are not missing anything. Plus St. Lucia doesn't really offer any of the things on your list except couples only.

From your list, I would recommend the Manchebo in Aruba. It has everything you described.
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 11th, 2013, 08:04 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 2
Hi Holly,

What about the RIU in aruba or other Sandals properties? I just returned from Sandals Grande Antigua and it was amazing! Also Sandals La Toc (stayed there a few years ago) is a good option and you could travel to Sandals Grande for the day. How much is your budget?
Melissa
MelissaTravelGal is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 11th, 2013, 05:57 PM
  #4
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
Since the OP stated the Sandals Grande was not in her budget, I doubt any Sandals in any destination they offer will meet her budget requirements either.

The RIU in Aruba is also very expensive because it's an all inclusive. AI's outside of Jamaica, Mexico and the DR usualy charge 2 to 3 times more. Also, AI in Aruba is not advisable. There are tons of great restaurants in all prices ranges and part of the vacation experience there is to try as many as you can.

Addtionally, according to the criteria list the OP provided St. Lucia doesn't meet anything on it.

IMPO, the best, most lux and least expensive couples only AI resorts that will also meet the OP's criteria are located in the Playa del Carmen/Riviera Maya area of Mexico.
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 25th, 2013, 12:05 PM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 3
Thank you so much!!! Sorry I did not reply sooner. We got busy at work and I neglected to check in. I appreciate the responses. I think we are pretty much (due to cost) going to have to look at the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Jamaica. We still would love an all inclusive in a pretty, fun, interesting place. What do you think we could get for around $4000 including airfare out of Florida, for 6 or 7 nights? Any recommendations for a nice AI? Thanks again!!
Holly
Hollyanne116 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 26th, 2013, 12:29 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 475
Check out the Grand Palldium in Riviera Maya. They have a "Royal Suites" section that is adult only. The suites are gorgeous, with huge jacuzzis on the balconies. Food is outstanding which is rare for AIs, the beach is beautiful, and there is a decent reef to snorkel at the north end of their beach. We did 8 nights from BOS for $1400 each which included everything. You will be hard pressed to find a bad review of this place.
Bassguy66 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 27th, 2013, 08:19 AM
  #7
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
In Mexico, check out the Secrets, Iberostars, El Dorados, the Excellances and the Royal Playa del Carmen. Our favorite is the Royal Playa del Carmen as it is a 5 minute walk to 5th Avenue in Playa del Carmen. When we return, I think we would go with the Excellance Riviera Cancun. The name is deceiving as it is not in Cancun, but in Puerto Morelos between Cancun and Playa del Carmen.

In Jamaica, look at the Secrets resorts, Sunset at the Palms in Negril and the Jewell Dunn's River in Ocho Rios. We loved the Jewell. It was formally a Sandals. We do love the pools that the Sandals resorts provide so going with the Jewell was perfect for us. We got the pools and swim up bars, but not the overpriced rooms, bad food and service and hype that Sandals provide. The offer an around the resort photo shoot, which would be great for a 10th wedding anniversary. We got a CD with several pics for $60. So worth it.

If you are interested I have pics of our trips at:

http://kvrlvnphotogallery.shutterfly.com/pictures/5
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 27th, 2013, 05:01 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 14
If the Grande St. Lucian is out of your budget, finding a couples or adults only resort is going to be tough. Punta Cana has some excellent all inclusives that would meet your criteria and the best in the Caribbean for under $250 a night are located there.
http://www.caribbeanislandhopper.com...under-250.html
Caribbean_Vacations is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 27th, 2013, 06:44 PM
  #9
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
"If the Grande St. Lucian is out of your budget, finding a couples or adults only resort is going to be tough."

That is not necessary true. Adult only AI's especially in Mexico, Jamaica and the DR are at least 1/2 in price than any of the Sandals resorts.

We have stayed at 2 Sandals in the lower category rooms for around $5,000 with air. In Mexico, we paid $2,500 for the Royal Playa del Carmen and $2,200 for the Jewell with air for 2 people. Those resorts were also much nicer with better food and service than the Sandals we've been to.

Go to one of the on-line bookings sites and just see what your budget can get you. I priced out the Exellance Riviera Cancun and it's was coming in at $2,300 for 5 nights. For fun, I priced out the Sandals Emerald Bay and for 4 nights with air was almost $6,000.

It also depends on what time of year you are going, what airport you are flying from, what day you flying out on, how many nights and room category. I rarely if ever book anything over the basic standard room.
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 27th, 2013, 07:57 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 14
True, deals can be had, but a quick check of typical rates... Royal Playa Del Carmen $500/night, Dunn's River $600/night - not quite half of Grande St. Lucian's $600/night.
Caribbean_Vacations is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 28th, 2013, 02:17 AM
  #11
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
Where are you getting those prices? The prices I quoted are for air and hotel for 2 people for 5 to 6 nights of what I found either on Travelocity, Expedia or Orbitz. I have never found rates that high for those hotels, much less paid that price. Those quotes are from my departure point, I usually pay $200 to $300 more than most people because I fly out of a remote airport. So other people can find better prices than that.

You must be a TA or a representative of Sandals. No way are many of the AI resorts in Mexico, DR, or Jamaica ever price matched to that of a Sandals resort. Sandals are way over priced and overrated for what they offer. Also, on-line booking sites always offer better deals than a TA, which is why I don't use one.
KVR is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 30th, 2013, 12:48 PM
  #12
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 109
Another vote for the Royal in Playa del Carmen. We honeymooned here and it was spectacular.

I also recommend looking into St Thomas or St John for everything you are looking for.
ComeSailWithME is offline  
Reply With Quote
 


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 05:52 AM.