Grand Cayman Trip Report--2nd half

Old Oct 1st, 2006, 10:21 PM
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Grand Cayman Trip Report--2nd half

With our general impressions of the island and resort out of the way, here is a little bit about our activities and dining experience:

Monday-- Flew in, and spent day at resort. Had dinner at Aquabeach, which is a fun sports-bar type atmosphere that had Monday night football going. It is a good place to go for the 1st night if you're tired from travel and don't want to pay a lot for a dinner when you aren't in tip top shape.

Tuesday-- Had brunch at Seven at the hotel, which was good though expensive. Because the spa at the Ritz was closed, I went across to the salon at the Strand shopping center, as I needed a brow wax. BEST IDEA EVER. They were kind, sophisticated, and did a fabulous job for $15. Silver Rain charges $65. Still aching from our $110 bar tab the day before, we went to the store in the same shopping center for some drinks and snacks, which I highly recommend. We sat around the pool and generally relaxed. Dinner was at Coconut Joes. It had a festive atmosphere, bar food. It was okay, but we preferred Aquabeach for both.

Wednesday-- Got up late as it was raining (as it did on and off while we were there) and went to the gym. Had lunch at Eats--loved it, and it was sooo cheap. We ate there twice and thought the food was wonderful, the staff was incredibly friendly, and the hip vibe was refreshing. The management seems to take its job seriously. Breakfast entrees run about $6-7 US, and lunch about $8-12. We then rented a car at the Avis in the Ritz. I highly recommend doing this for at least a couple days that you don't plan to sit around the hotel. It was only $26.99 US per day, which is not much more than we were paying in cab fare for dinner daily. We drove around the island and went snorkeling at Smiths Cove. It was a lot of fun. We had dinner at Ristorante Papagallo (sp?). The food and service were excellent.

Thursday-- We got up late again (and waited out the rain), and had lunch, again at Eats. We had planned to do a stingray city tour but the rain was looking bad so we put it off until Friday (which Capt. Marvin's allows you to do w/o paying extra or losing $ or anything). The weather started to clear and we drove around the island to Rum Point. Rum Point was different than I expected. I thought it would be a very pristine beach with not much there except a small restaurant/bar. I was surprised that it is sort of a small cove/beach that seems to be owned by a bar that puts out a ton of beach chairs and a bunch of signs that say "no outdoor food and drink," which I found tacky and somewhat jarring. The water was pretty though, so we ordered some drinks and started snorkeling. They closed around 5 or so, though, (not long after we arrived) and we were there almost by ourselves except a few stragglers, which was amazing. We opened a bottle of wine we'd brought, and watched the sun go down in peace, which was very romantic. Then, a crazy evening lightning and thunderstorm started, and EVERYONE left except us. We stayed and watched it in the 80 degree water, and it was one of the most intense sights I've seen. When we decided to leave around 7:30 or so, we got in our car, and as we slammed the car door and the downpour started. Perfect timing, and very romantic! We made it back to the hotel about an hour later, got ready for dinner and headed to Bamboo at the Hyatt. We loved the hip vibe and the sushi was good. I was also impressed by the Hyatt property and thought it very nice. (Reminded me of the movie the Firm!)

Friday-- Our Stingray City cruise was scheduled for morning, but it was pouring, so we pushed it to afternoon. We went to Cimbalo for breakfast, which was pretty good. The weather cleared by afternoon, so we sat on the ocean for a few hours outside the Ritz and ordered lunch (we split a quesadilla meal, which is more than enough for one person, if you're looking to save $ on the Ritz food). We then took the Capt. Marvin's half-day snorkel and Stingray city boat. It was perfect. We loved the snorkeling. The stingray thing was one of the craziest things we've ever experienced. We bought the video. BTW, Capt. Marvin's is about half the price of Red Sail. Not sure what is so great about Red Sail but we had a great time on Capt. Marvin's. We ended our evening with a gym and Silver Rain spa experience (again, just the facilities, no treatments), which really relaxed us. Then we headed to Deckers for dinner. We LOVED Deckers. It has a very cool, hip vibe, great food, a beautiful, island like atmosphere but with a young international hip flavor. I would highly recommend it for the younger set who enjoys a cool atmosphere and good food and drinks. When we returned to the Ritz, the lobby bar was THE place to be on the Island, apparently. A DJ was spinning, and all kinds of young, well-dressed good looking 20-40 somethings were drinking cocktails. We hung out and enjoyed it, though I felt underdressed. Everyone on this website says "go smart casual" but if you plan on hitting the Ritz on Friday night (or apparently the O Bar afterwards, which we didn't do), take something hip and stylish. A sexy sequin top, nice pants, and hot shoes, with an evening bag would be fine for women. Hip collared shirt, linen or black pants, nice shoes for men.

Saturday-- We had intended to rent a boat, but decided to enjoy the resort beach, pool and spa again. Like I said, the Ritz facilities make you not want to leave. We did take a drive up to Calico Jack's for lunch. GORGEOUS view and beach, friendly people, great quesadilla (my husband's lunch), not so great burger (mine), really good Pina Coladas! Good prices.

For dinner, we had made reservations at the Wharf, having seen the ads in all the books. We wanted good food in a romantic setting, on the water. We arrived, and I realized instantly that, although I had on a summery skirt and top and sandals and my husband a linen collared shirt and linen pants, we were very overdressed. It was very touristy. We were seated at a plastic table with placemats (no tablecloth) and given a very expensive food and drink menu. I had chosen a bottle of wine when suddenly, about six people came, and shoved their rear ends between our table and the water. Now, we had a water-side seat, so what we now had a view up was a close up view of 6 giant rear ends, and two squirming children-- all waiting for the evening "fish feed", when a bunch of fish get fed in the water. I looked everywhere for our waiter to ask if we could have another table or if someone could kindly ask the people in the tight shorts to remove their derieres from our table, but could not find anyone. Our romantic dinner plans had turned into the 4th of July at a suburban shopping mall. We got up and left. We decided to go to Blue, even though we eat at very nice restautarants all the time in Boston, SF and New York, and really wanted something with ambience and a romantic seaside view this time. We mentioned our plight to the cab driver, who recommended Reef Grill. We decided to try it out and loved it. It had tablecloths, real wine glasses, delicious food, great service, a LIVE Caribbean band,and dancing, all on the water. It was the perfect romantic end to our anniversary trip.

The next day, Sunday, we hung out at the pool and then flew home! Had a great time!





lukesaunt is offline  
Old Oct 2nd, 2006, 04:18 AM
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luke,
Glad that you had a good time.My favorite restaurant was also Deckers.They have the most flavorful food and the atmosphere...great!

We also did STC with Captain Marvin's..do you remember who taped the video? We had a guy named Paul from New Zealand who was just great.We also bought the video.

Sorry that your experience of the Wharf was bad.We had a great experience.We also had our kids with us who enjoyed it.Although they fed there food to the tarpons. (which was expensive )

We went to the O bar and had a blast.Sorry you missed it.

Again glad that you had a great trip!

Christie



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Old Oct 12th, 2006, 08:08 AM
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Thanks Again. Meg
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Old Nov 18th, 2006, 01:48 PM
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This is a helpful post, thanks, especially about renting a car too. My husband and I are going soon to GC staying at the Ritz for 5 nights. I was going to make reserv. at Blue and 7 at the hotel for dinner do you recommend these? I have heard how expensive the restaurants/food at Ritz are so we know what to expect. Otherwise we were thinking of trying Ristorante Pappagallo for dinner too? Any other suggestions on things to do during the day or night, would be appreciated. (we are in our early 30s) Thanks!
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Old Nov 19th, 2006, 07:23 AM
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EMM,
Coconut Joe's is a fun hang out for drinks.
Decker's has great food for a great price.

Stingray City with Captain Marvin's is a must...we had a blast.The staff was very nice.

Have fun!

Christie
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Old Nov 19th, 2006, 01:10 PM
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EMM. Since nothing was mentioned about them, there is a small museum on the frontage in town. A tourist sub whih takes you on an underwater cruise. What I found spooky was looking out of the window at just light blue. The sea bottom past the shelf was 4 miles down. Go to "Hell". It is a small place named after brightly coloured rock but has a post office where you can send postcards to someone postmarked "Hell". There are a few places in town which aren't too expensive, a minimart, etc.
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Old Nov 21st, 2006, 02:40 PM
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Thanks. Anyone suggest going to Periwinkle for dinner at the Ritz? We are trying to decide on additional places to go to for dinner, we are trying Decker's, Blue, 7 Sunsets, Ristorante Pappagallo and are looking for one more place. Everything gets so booked we were advised to book in advance.
Thanks!
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Old Nov 21st, 2006, 07:06 PM
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I like the Lighthouse and Portofino's. If you have a car it's a beautiful drive and quite different from those you listed in the 7MB area.
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2006, 05:17 AM
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EMM, we were just in Cayman last week. As far as your search for one more restaurant, and that I don't see anyone else has listed here, I highly recommend Calypso Grill in West Bay and, if you're a fan of sushi, Bamboo (located at the Hyatt) is fantastic.
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2006, 05:27 AM
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fuse,
We tried to go to Bamboo in May but the day that we went there,they were closed.

EMM,
We enjoyed The Wharf, it was neat watching the huge Tarpon eat. We did not have any problems with people's behinds in our way like lukesaunt.

Christie
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Old Nov 22nd, 2006, 05:52 AM
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Has anyone been to Calypso Grill? Thanks!
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Old Nov 23rd, 2006, 04:29 AM
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I am so sorry u all didn't stop @ Pure Art on South Church St. when u snorkeled @ Smith Cove, Lukesaunt. I wonder why u didn't stop? Had u heard it has been in its charming Cayman cottale for over 20 yrs., selling fun, gorgeous Cayman Gifts, art, spices, prints...collectables??
DO recommend next visit.
...D
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