THE PERFECT HONEYMOON

Dec 20th, 2002, 10:24 PM
  #1  
HONEYMOONER
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THE PERFECT HONEYMOON

hello, my fiance and I are in search for the perfect honeymoon. We are both 25 and are looking for beautifal water, romantic quarters, and day time activities. I have been to the Bahamas but thought of it more as a family location. I have not been to any other Carribean islands but friends of ours went to St Kitts and the US Virgin Islands. I guess what we really want is a romantic/couple resort that offers some nightlife/activities. Any suggestions would be great!!
 
Dec 21st, 2002, 08:42 AM
  #2  
Lisa
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I think knowing your budget would help in making a recommendation but here are a few: Anguilla, St. Barts, Jamaica (for the nightlife), Aruba and Barbados.
It also depends on how much night life you are looking for. There are many other options of course, but I don't think of St Kitts or the Virgin Islands (except St Thomas maybe) as having a bustling nightlife. The USVI & BVI are absolutely beautiful though and offer many activities. Hope this helps!
 
Dec 21st, 2002, 01:26 PM
  #3  
honeymooner
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I think we are leaning towards an all inclusive package mainly because it's a little less hassle. Also, we would be flying from Ohio and we don't really want a long flight. When we speak of nightlife, we were thinking of wanting a few casual bars maybe a casino or a party boat of some kind. Nothing too crazy. We don't know much about St. Barts, what's it like? Could we maybe go there in addition to another island? I think a combination of fun activities and relaxation is the key so if we could that by going to a couple of islands that would be great. Do you recommend one particular all-inclusive resort over the others?
 
Dec 21st, 2002, 02:51 PM
  #4  
GM
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Have to agree with the poster Lisa; your budget makes the world of difference. AND especially the season of the year.

I think you guys would like St. Thomas. St. John is gorgeous (and you can go there for a day trip from St. Thomas), but doesn't have what St. Thomas has the in rockin' nightlife you might be looking for (Hard Rock Cafe', etc.). The resorts I'd recommend for you are pricey, especially in the High season (end Dec. thru April). August starts hurricane season thru the end of Nov.

If you want St. Thomas, I'd recommend Frenchman's Reef but at Morningstar, not the Hotel, for your honeymoon, and advise when making the reservation you are on your honeymoon. Morningstar resort is right on the beach, and there are 3 story villas instead of a high rise hotel (3rd story is the best for privacy). There are families that stay there too, but it more private than within the hotel, and IS the closest and nicest by the town for at night, and has a disco at the Hotel also. You will feel safe staying here.

The Ritz Carlton is WONDERFUL, but this is going to be pricey, and about 30 mins. from town.

Grand Cayman would be nice too, but again, budget makes all the difference; dining out can be pricey.

Hope the above helps; all the best on your upcoming marriage.
 
Dec 21st, 2002, 04:00 PM
  #5  
Janet
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Look into the Divi on Aruba; it is all inclusive on a nice beach. Lots of activities in Aruba; bars, party boats, casinos.

The Allegro on Aruba (may have a new name) is also all-inclusive. a co-worker honeymooned there and loved it.

However, it is not the most beautiful island out there.
 
Dec 21st, 2002, 09:37 PM
  #6  
hONEYMOONER
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THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR POSTING SUGGESTIONS, THEY WERE VERY HELPFUL. SINCE EVERYONE SEEMS TO BE ASKING ABOUT OUR BUDGET I CAN SAY THAT WE ARE HOPING TO SPEND AROUNG $4,000-5,000. WE WILL BE GOING SEPT 8-15 (HURRICANE SEASON, YET NOT AS EXPENSIVE EITHER). SINCE LAST WRITING WE HAVE FOUND A COUPLE OF RESORTS ON ST. JOHN AND THE T&C ISLANDS THAT WE LIKE. DOES ONE HAVE BETTER/WORSE WEATHER AT THIS TIME OF YEAR? ANY OTHER HELP WOULD BE APPRECIATED!!
 
Dec 22nd, 2002, 06:57 PM
  #7  
GM
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Honeymooner....you do NOT want to go to T&C or St. John in September for your honeymoon; you guys might as well stay home, this is prime time tropical storm/hurricane season.

I'd rather see you guys go to Aruba to stay out of the storms. The Aruba Sonesta is now Marriott Renaissance, and offers a nice 7 night Honeymoon package that includes a couples spa treatment and other nice amenities - check out Renaissance Hotel's website.

Other locations are Bonaire or Curacao to make sure you are not locked inside due to the weather, but unless you are divers, you might be bored.

Hope this helps - all the best.
 
Dec 22nd, 2002, 07:32 PM
  #8  
res
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Honeymooner, please take that last response from GM with a hefty grain of salt. The last major hurricane in the US Virgin Islands was Marilyn on September 15, 1995, then we had Bertha and Lenny thereafter, neither of which did much damage and didn't inconvenience anybody too much. A few blows and warnings in the ensuing years but they turned out to be nothing and in 2002 there wasn't even a hint of a hurricane. Probably not in 2001 or 2000 or 1999 or 1998 either. Maybe not even 1997. What do I know, I just live here! GM seems too adamant about you NOT being in St John or T&C while advocating Aruba which certainly has its attributes but is very flat, quite arid and not very picturesque.
GM posted a prior response advocating St. John and St. Thomas and then did a turnaround when you posted that you were planning a visit during "hurricane season". Question, GM, have you ever been here either during a real hurricane (like Hugo or Marilyn) or have you been here for the minor blow-throughs, or have you ever stayed here during "hurricane season" at all?
Don't be deterred, honeymooner. Mainland USA has experienced much more devastation from tropical storms and hurricanes than have these little specks on the ocean when you look at it overall.
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 03:24 AM
  #9  
Jen
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Honeymooner, I absolutely agree with that last poster (Res). I am a resident in the British Virgin Islands which is right next to St ThomasSt John and can attest to what he/she is saying re hurricanes. Though your intended trip may be in what we typically refer to as the height of the hurricane season, severe hurricane activity seems to have slowed since late 90's/2000 and we have been especially fortunate in the last couple of years with nothing but very mild storms. It is true that that US mainland has fared worst than us in recent times as far as hurricanes go
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 04:45 AM
  #10  
xxxx
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Perfect is like beauty = it's all in the eye of the beholder. Budget and the amount of activity you want will determine what is perfect for you. You can look at super luxurious all inclusives like Jumby Bay. St. Barth's is a wonderful destination as is Anguilla but those are not the traditional places to go all inclusive. But you have to fix a budget to see how much you want to spend.
I cringe each time someone says how safe Aruba is. True they may not have had a direct hurricane hit in years and yeas and it is southern enough to protect it somewhat but it certainly has its share of weather and blowbacks from canes hitting in other areas of the Caribbean basin. Just a couple of years ago visitors came home early due to the flooding and problems in early December that weren't even hurricane related.
September and October are the peak of the hurricane season but one can be on one island and one right next door goes untouched like Marilyn who left Tortola pretty much untouched by did much damage in the USVI and some of the other smaller BVI's. Note that hurricane season starts June 1(not August) so traveling anytime in the summer there is a possibilitly of a cane but not a probability and that's why the rates are down. Your key is to have travel insurance and be prepared. I have traveled many times in October and have yet to have to change plans or even have a rain out in the VI. Of course the later in the month, the riskier it gets.
Interestingly Grand Cayman gets the most hits historically, I believe.
If it is St. John you'll want Caneel Bay for a honeymoon. The only other resort there is the Westin which is a more economical choice for sure but it doesn't have the beautiful water or romantic setting. They do some years offer all inclusive off season (or at least a modified all inclusive as does Caneel with the meal plan).
Marriott properties also some years offer all inclusive off season. Often MorningStar closes for part of September and October due to low occupany. The Reef is a typical highrise but close to Charlotte Amalie and some of the good dining and night life (you want places like the GreenHouse NOT Hard Rock - why go to the Caribbean to experience the medicore chain restaurants and bars!) The Renaissance is on East End and a convenient location for activity. The Ritz is a pricer Marriott alternative but with their new beach and spa might be worth looking into but they offer options like B&B not all inclusive. For a honeymoon you might want to forego the self-catering and enjoy resort amentities but St. John does offer some nice condo or villa options if you want to go that route and save some $$$.
You'll find Aruba a bit more commercialized than many of the islands since it is mass marketed and a popular destination. It will have the casinos and more of the activity that you might want but you do give up some of the Caribbean feel and flavour that you may seek.
Beaches and Allegro are the all inclusives on Provo in the TCI and Beaches is primarily a mega family resort. There are some lovely secluded places on the out islands as there wre in the Bahamas but their activity is somewhat limited to beach experiences, low key drinking and some entertainment at night.
But don't eliminate all the islands that might be hit by a hurricane. You won't go to the Caribbean or the Atlantic Islands at all.
Good luck and congrats!
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 04:46 AM
  #11  
elise
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i am going to St John for my honeymoon in June 2003... you should look in to the Westin. We chose to stay on st john for the quiet.. and we can go over to st thomas when we need a little extra night life.
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 05:49 AM
  #12  
Weatherman
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Just a note about weather.....Although you may not get a hurricane in September, it is rainy season and you may not get as many sunny days (this is the reason many resorts close at this time and re-open Nov 1st, as it is a slower time for tourism due to the weather). This is mostly "tropical depression" season, which may not produce a hurricane but will give you clouds/and or rain. Look at this website www.stormcarib.com, and do the research for yourself as you can check the archives.
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 06:52 AM
  #13  
Islander
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Honeymooner, I just returned from my weddingmoon about 3 months ago. We stayed at Sandals Antigua and had the time of our lives. Before the Sandals bashing begins, let me just say that I am not one of those "Sandals lovers". This resort just has a great laid back and romantic charm to it, and we loved the island.

The landscaping was very lush and tropical, well kept also. The beach was amazing with soft powder-like sand and beautiful aquamarine water. It is also very warm and calm, perfect for swimming or watersports.

This resort seems to fit what you are looking for, and also your budget. We traveled from Tennessee and stayed 7 nights for just under $5,000 (including airfare). This was with us staying in a concierge level suite also. The resort offers plenty to do during the day as far as land / watersports (and they're all included in the price). There is a good selection of food. And the nightly entertainment was great. This resort offers plenty to do or you have the option to do nothing at all! We enjoyed the all-inclusive because we didn't once have to think about our finances while on our honeymoon. It was the most relaxing time of our lives!

Now Antigua does tend to get SOME of the weather in September (although not as much as the islands further north). We were there Oct. 3-10 which was still pretty much in the heart of hurricane season. We had perfect weather the entire time we were there. It rained our last night while we were walking on the beach and we just ran for cover under a tiki hut and talked until the rained stopped. It was perfect!

If worried about the weather, head south to Aruba. Good luck and congrats!
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 08:56 AM
  #14  
beachlover
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September is hurricane season for the entire Caribbean. Whynot check into Tahiti for a romantic beacutiful honeymoon? The weather should be better and if you go towards the end of the month it is whale season. In my honest opinion, there is nothing more romantic or beautiful as the South Pacific. May I suggest Rangiroa and Bora Bora or Moorea as your islands in Tahiti. Check it out
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 01:18 PM
  #15  
GM
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To poster 'Res'

I HAVED stayed in the Caribbean during September and October in the past during hurricanes and tropical storms (during OUR honeymoon in Oct. at Jamaica). My best friend's daughter went to St. Thomas in Nov. 2000 I believe, and they were on the Eastern part of the Island, and couldn't get out during the hurricane. Most of the time they were inside the hotel and had no power and couldn't get to Frenchman's, where they have back-up power. The hotel experienced so much damage that the day and a half they DID have left there, it was during clean up time around the resorts and roads.

BELIEVE ME - I don't advocate Aruba over the U.S. or BVI's - we LOVE the U.S. and BVI's moreso anyday. I just posted the 'turn-around' cause I hate to see this young couple have a disappointing time due to the bad weather and taking a chance. During our honeymoon altho the bad weather allowed for more time in the hotel room ..(well, THAT wasn't TOO bad)..it would've been nicer to have better weather.

Have to agree with you and the others that have stated you really DO take your chances during Aug-Nov and could get great weather.

I guess since we lived thru it, it wasn't too bad; just wish someone would've offered more helpful info to us.
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 02:23 PM
  #16  
res
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Well good evening honeymooners and GM!
GM, Jamaica is certainly in the Caribbean but nowhere near us in the Virgin Islands.
Insofar as your best friend's daughter's visit during (your maybe) November 2000 I can honestly say that I don't recall anything much coming through then and I'm on the East End too. It's too bad that where they were staying didn't have back-up generator (most of the resorts do and so do some of the larger restaurants) and this might certainly be something to check into, honeymooners! Honestly, though, I don't remember anything in 2000 or, as I posted earlier, much else in previous years that caused "substantial damage". A tropical storm (indeed a hurricane too) is usually a 24 hour blow-through and once all that's over, the sun shines again and the debris is picked up.
However, I would advise anyone who's visiting here during hurricane season to just check and see if their hotel or resort has a reliable back-up generator system.
To add a little levity, all this at this point is a little passé to many of us who went through Marilyn. I was without power for almost six months and it's amazing how you can cope without the basics you take for granted and make do. Nonethless, of course this wouldn't be the norm for someone coming for just a week or two, so, again, if travelling anywhere in the hurricane belt during hurricane season, just check with the resort.
Thanks, GM, be well prospective honeymooners - and everyone please have a very Merry and wonderful Christmas!
 
Dec 23rd, 2002, 03:26 PM
  #17  
xxxxx
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and a joyous Boxing Day to you too!
Leftie Lennie came through in November 1999 (I think that was the year). What a strange year since everyone had just sighed a breathe of relief that Season was over all but on the calendar and he came from the wrong way no less! The he sat over St. Martin and really ripped up the islands there!
Generators are nice to have for sure but Marilyn was horrid and thankfully ones like she and Hugo don't go through too often. You know even Aruba had a close call this



season but it was downgraded just as it passed north of the island and then gathered steam beyond. Remember no guarantees and there is no guarantee for sure you'll get off the island if one is headed your way because the planes do stop flying.
But that aside after the cane passes (usually in a day) the weather is fantastic. Of course you might have to deal with some inconveniences. But it all boils down to IF and MAYBE.
 
Dec 24th, 2002, 03:57 AM
  #18  
Mia
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My husband and I have been to Jamaica a few times, once in September. Weather was hot & humid of course, but we didn't encounter any rain at that time.

We stayed at Half Moon Golf, Tennis, and Beach Club in Montego Bay - definitely enjoyed our time and it was a great place for honeymooners. We went horseback riding on the beach and in the ocean, got to go scuba diving, and had lobster every night They offer a few packages, including all inclusive packages. Go to http://www.halfmoonweddings.com and then click on honeymoon. I hope this helps and have a great time wherever you're going!
 
Dec 26th, 2002, 09:14 AM
  #19  
nadine
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if you're going to spend $4,000-$5,000, you could do cap juluca in anguilla (it will be a little more than $5,000 though)... it's absolutely beautiful and romantic (a bit expensive but worth the cost).
yes it's during hurricane season but you know what..my husband and i go the caribbean every year (different islands) for our anniversary (we go end of september/beginning of october) and we haven't encountered a hurricane yet (knock on wood).
don't do st. thomas usvi, the crime has gotten worse. st. john usvi is a much better island to go to especially on a honeymoon (incredible beaches/water).
aruba is nice but not as nice as the above i think. we stayed at the divi and it was just ok.. i have friends (2 different couples) who've stayed at the hyatt in aruba for their honeymoon and loved it (the weather and water is really nice there).
my philosophy: it's your honeymoon, it will probably be the only time that you'll splurge on a vacation without feeling too guilty about it, so just splurge. for the rest of your lives, especially when you have kids, you'll always look for best deals and cheaper islands to go to.
good luck!
 
Dec 26th, 2002, 03:26 PM
  #20  
res
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Honeymooners - we residents just love little zingers as in the last post about "don't do st. thomas usvi, the crime has gotten worse.."
To flog that poor deceased parrot one more time and try to un-nail him from his perch and then resuscitate him, the odds of your getting into trouble here while visiting are just about as great as if the island floated a little closer to Puerto Rico during some high swells....
Unless of course you roam Back Street and the alleys late at night or otherwise do dumb things that everyone advises you not to do. You can find trouble anywhere if you look hard enough.
 

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