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Need Help Choosing Honeymoon!

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Aug 26th, 2011, 07:36 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 9
Need Help Choosing Honeymoon!

Hi! My hubby-to-be and I are frequent travelers and and have done the Bahamas & Mexico thing a bunch of times (its so cheap to go from S. FL), and we're going to Puerto Vallarta in November so we are looking for other suggestions for our end of January honeymoon! We are hoping to go for 10 or so nights, and our budget kind of maxes out around $4500 but of course we'd love to keep it as inexpensive as possible.

Our must-haves are:

All-inclusive
Romantic luxury for honeymooners
Adults/Couples only (unless its a more remote island with few kids expected)
Tropical, pristine turquoise beach
Numerous bars/restaurants at the resort
Prefer a smaller/more condensed resort rather than these massive ones with tons of different room blocks
Swimup bar
Prefer a swimup room but ocean view is fine too depending.

We are in our 20s and are looking for a mix of poolside/beachside entertainment (for him, ie: pool volleyball, polo etc) and quieter relaxation. Our typical trip is me laying by the pool with a drink, watching him play his water sports, and I'll occasionally partake in playing but I'm pretty uncoordinated so I'm much happier to observe and read At night we enjoy socializing at the hotel bars or taking in shows and usually end up in bed early - we're not really ones to go off the resort at night.

We like to snorkel and explore new places and love to go "where the locals go" but feel safe and welcomed. We're hoping with 10 days, it will be enough time that we can leave the resort and check things out without feeling like we need to absorb every second of sun at the pool like we've felt on past 5 day trips.

We went to the Dominican Republic last year and probably won't go back, our resort was swarmed with hundreds of locals on our long weekend trip and kind of ruined the whole relaxation part of vacation when it got so overcrowded so I don't really think we will even consider there. We'd love to check out a new island we've never been to and have been thinking about Curacao, St. Lucia, Barbados, USVI, and Jamaica (which I didn't especially like but we only stopped quickly on a cruise), or trusty old Mexico where we know we can get what we want for the price (Secrets or Excellence Resorts). We'd LOVE to go to Turks & Caicos, Anguilla, Antigua or anything like that but I think it's a little too pricy for us right now.

So, thank you for taking the time to read this, and any suggestions, good or bad about certain islands would be great. Feel free to suggest any other places I may not have mentioned! We'll be traveling from Ft. Lauderdale or Miami, FL if that helps. Thank you!!

**Also, if you suggest an island or resort and have any good excursions to recommend that is much appreciated too!
SoonToBeMrsCook is offline  
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Aug 27th, 2011, 04:31 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 12,269
www.bookit.com

www.luxurylink.com

If you are talking $2250 per person for over a week at

a super AI in high season your selection will be limited.

secretsresorts.com couples.com Sandals perhaps

Negril Swept Away has a nice vibe

Secrets Maroma/Capri super nice also for me in past

Almondresorts.com St Lucia Barbados perhaps.

Check ratings reviews carefully... travelzoo.com amazing

sales to might monitor that also Shermans....

Cheapest flights usually spirit.com aa.com

Congrats!
qwovadis is offline  
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Aug 27th, 2011, 07:47 AM
  #3
KVR
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,075
From your description, I think Jamaica is what you are looking for. The Couples resorts are highly recommended, but look at the Jewell Dunn's River in Ocho Rios. It used to be a Sandals, but was bought out and refurbished last year. It has everything you described except swim-up pool rooms. The resort is getting really great reviews on TA and one of the hotel's employees frequents the message boards with information, updates and answers questions. Shows a real commitment to customer service. We are going in December.

Besides Mexico, Jamaica and the DR, it's really difficult to find an AI that is adult's only. St. Lucia would also fit your criteria, but might be a little more expensive and definatley more difficult to get there, but doable. We stayed at the Sandals Grande, which I would not recommend. Look at Rendezvous. I wished we would have stayed at Ladera, but it's not AI and some people have issues with just the 3 walls in the room, but I wouldn't have.

In Antigua, look at Galley Bay or St. James Club. There is a Sandals there also.

In Barbados, one of the Almond resorts is AI and adult's only, but does not get high remarks.

In Curacao, there are no AI's that are adult's only. There is Breezes, which I would not recommend and the Kura Hulanda and it's very expensive. Curacao is not tropical. The sand is made of crushed coral and the beaches are smalls coves. No long stretches of beach. The topography reminded me of Arizona or New Mexico.

Turks and Caicos has Club Med that is an AI adult's only, but probably not what you are looking for. There is also the Veranda, that has a meal plan, but not adults only and is pretty expensive. T & C is not tropical, but has the best beach and water of any of the other Islands that you have listed except maybe Anguilla, which I know nothing about except it's out of my price range and we would probably never go there.
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Aug 27th, 2011, 09:05 AM
  #4
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 9
Thank you so much, qwovadis & KVR! We would be willing to cut our trip a day or two short if we found a place we were absolutely in love with in order to fit the budget. I was looking into Couples resorts last night and they look amazing. Ladera in St. Lucia looks absolutely beautiful and hopefully we can experience it someday, its just not exactly what we want for our honeymoon. Maybe an anniversary trip down the road though... I will look into all your suggestions - I really appreciate you taking the time to commet
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Aug 31st, 2011, 09:44 PM
  #5
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 1
Mrs Cook soon!

We're headed to Tortola next week, staying at a house called Kerensa. It's not an AI but it's beautiful! You might look on vrbo.com, check out the homes for rent.

We travel to PV regularly and have discovered our home away from home. It's called Majahuitas and it's a small resort south of Boca the town that's about 20 minutes south of PV. You take a boat to get to Majahuitas, they serve 3 meals a day, and they only have 8 open air casitas. The place is lit by candles at night, very romantic. You might stay in PV for a few nights, party away then spend 5-6 nights at Maja. ( you won't want to leave, trust me!)

Enjoy!
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