Totem Travel (425) 821-4100   (800) 321-7907

2016 list of top 10 honeymoon resorts in the South Pacific


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Brides.com recently published a list of the 10 top honeymoon resorts in the South Pacific and as Totem Travel’s Tahiti and Fiji travel specialist I am happy to report I have stayed at 7 of the 10 resorts and wholeheartedly endorse their selections! I even share their pick of the Four Seasons Bora Bora as #1 and have previously written about Bora Bora’s best honeymoon resorts and my favorite resorts in Fiji including many of these luxurious properties.

  1. Four Seasons Bora Bora
  2. The Brando Tahiti
  3.  St Regis  Bora Bora
  4.  Laucala Fiji
  5.  Le Taha’a Taha’a
  6.  Turtle Island Fiji
  7.  Le Meridien Bora Bora
  8.  Pearl Resort Bora Bora
  9.  Royal Davui Fiji
  10.  Namale  Fiji

There are however a few incredible places not on this list and some offer amazing values so if your Tahiti honeymoon or Fiji vacation plans include a romantic overwater bungalow or beachfront bure with private pool I hope you’ll reach out so I can help you find the perfect spot.

P.S. It’s incredibly easy to be legally married in Fiji and destination weddings for same sex and traditional sex couples are welcome in Tahiti. Mauruuru and vinaka!

Patagonia here I come!


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As a lifetime travel junkie I’m always most excited about a place I’ve never been, so suffice it to say I can’t wait to touch down on a new continent later this year! I’ll be exploring some of the world’s most beautiful natural wonders in South America including Iguassu Falls, Moreno Glacier, Mt Fitz Roy and Torres de Paines National Park.

As a not so sneak preview I am sharing Conde Nast’s 50 most beautiful places in South America which includes four of my planned stops in Argentina and Chile. Check out #1, 9, 10 and 22 then watch for lots more photos and my personal accounts toward the end of the year. Soooo excited!

Which is the best Sandals Resort? 2016 update


A lot has changed since I first wrote about the best Sandals Resort including new resorts in Grenada and Barbados and major enhancements at Sandals all-inclusive resorts on Jamaica, Antigua, St Lucia and the Bahamas. So with 15 all inclusive resorts on 7 beautiful islands, which is the best Sandals Resort for a honeymoon and how should you choose a Sandals Resort for your next adult only all-inclusive vacation? Here are our picks for the best Sandals vacation experience.

Best entry level rooms – Whitehouse is the best Sandals Resort for entry level rooms with 100% beachfront locations and lovely ocean views. Every room has a king bed and furnished balcony plus all the features you expect from a luxury resort.

Best suitesOverwater bungalows open soon at Sandals Royal Caribbean and all we can say is wow! These opulent Tahiti style all-inclusive suites are the first of its kind in the Caribbean and come with private infinity pool, overwater hammock, glass viewing window and butler.

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Until then, the best suite is the Millionaire’s Suite at Sandals Regency La Toc, the only “love nest” to combine a completely private pool and skinny dippable Jacuzzi with expansive ocean views. These stunning views can be enjoyed from your king size bed, spacious living room, private deck, pool and Jacuzzi. There is even a sliding wall to open your room to balmy tropical breezes.

Best food  – We have a tie! Sandals Royal Bahamian in Nassau offers 10 distinctly diverse restaurants with upscale dining at the Baccarat and Crystal Room, fresh from the sea preparations at Gordon’s on the Pier and casual eateries such as Stew Fish on the private island and pub for late night dining.

Sandals  La Source Grenada uses locally grown “spice island” ingredients in every creative and beautifully prepared and presented meal. The 9 dining options include a classic steakhouse, French, seafood, Indian, Asian, Italian and even coffee drinks and cocktails are enhanced by exotic local spices.

Best service – The best Sandals Resort for service would be Royal Plantation with its intimate 72 room all butler suites. Sandals Grenada is a strong runner up with its handpicked staff and outstanding management team.

Best beach – Sandals Emerald Bay on Exuma has an unbeatable mile long white sand beach where the sand is soft, sugar white, the water a shimmering turquoise and the adult only ambiance super chill with nary a vendor to disturb your sun worshiping, beach walking serenity.

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Best pool – The Mediterranean Village at Sandals Grande Antigua takes top honors with its oceanfront fantasy pool, swim up bar, fountains, underwater seating, jacuzzi, comfy lounge chairs, shaded areas and butler attended cabanas.

Best on and off resort activities – The best Sandals Resort for activities is Sandals Ochi. This resort offers numerous land and water sports such as snorkeling, scuba, kayaks and tennis plus special extras like a rock climbing wall and an 18 hole golf course free of charge to guests. Off property you’ll find everything from river rafting, horseback riding and zip lining to Dunns River Falls, swimming with dolphins, ATVs and Jamaican bobsledding.

Best watersports – a tie for Sandals Grande St Lucian and Whitehouse offering on site snorkel and dive boats, waterskiing, tubing, stand up paddle boards, sailing, kayaks and water trikes all complimentary to resort guests and fun for active couples .

Best nightlifeSandals Royal Bahamian offers the best on and off resort nightlife with nearby casinos and big name entertainment.  Sandals Ochi has the most on property with a nightclub and the Caribbean’s only all-inclusive speakeasy bar.

Best for a destination wedding – Negril is the best Sandals Resort for a destination wedding with awesome sunsets and easy legal requirements plus kid friendly Beaches Negril minutes down the beach. Planning a fall destination wedding? Add Sandals newest resort in Barbados to your list. U.S. Travel and Leisure Reports says fall is the best time of year to visit and Sandals is offering fall wedding groups every 5th room free!

Best value – Sandals Whitehouse where every room is beachfront. Sandals Regency La Toc where you can get gorgeous views and private pools without spending a fortune and Sandal Ochi for low starting prices and the most affordable butler service.

Which Sandals Resort is the best for you? That may depend on travel dates, weather patterns, wish list and budget but if you’ll call or email we’ll help you choose the best Sandals Resort for you. We’ve been to all the Sandals Resorts and stayed in entry level rooms, Club Level and Butler Level suites. We’ve also been to Couples, Secrets, Excellence and other adult only all-inclusive resorts. So if you have questions or need help please call. We are here to help!

Top 5 Adult Only All-Inclusive Resorts with Butler Service


Looking for an adult only all-inclusive resort with butler service? Here are the 5 best butler service resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico plus a suggestion for the ultimate in pampering and butler service in Tahiti.

Sandals Royal Plantation – This 74 room gem is 100% oceanfront, ocean view butler suites with peacocks strolling the manicured gardens, afternoon tea on a shaded verandah, top rated spa, caviar bar and butlers offering champagne or spritzing guests lying by the azure sea. Butler not close enough to hear your thoughts? No worries, he or she is on call at the touch of a button!

The vibe at Royal Plantation is decidedly chill but when it’s time for action, guests enjoy a plethora of complimentary water sports or head to the 18 hole golf course where greens fees are free for Sandals Resort guests. Also complimentary are resort hopping privileges at Sandals Ochi, which BTW, provides some of the most affordable butler service accommodations anywhere. No wonder “The Bachelor” chose these resorts for his very special proposal!

Iberostar Grand Bavaro – This stunning adult only all-inclusive resort in Punta Cana is built around a magnificent lagoon fronting miles of white sand beach and turquoise water. Every opulent room features a marble bath with jacuzzi for two and walk in rain shower, luxurious linens and pillow menu, elegantly furnished sitting area and fully stocked minibar.

At check in butlers meet with guests and offer assistance with restaurant reservations, tee times and spa services and butler service is available throughout your stay. Noteworthy resort features include a wide range of organized activities, golf course, shipboard bar and oceanfront ocean view exercise facility with top of the line equipment.

El Dorado Maroma – An intimate boutique hotel tucked away on the peaceful Mexican Riviera, El Dorado Maroma is the antithesis of sprawling mega resorts.  Low rise buildings are built near the sea and beach butlers serve tropical drinks and snacks to resort guests lazily ensconced in comfy beach beds. Soon butler service will be expanded dramatically when the resort opens Mexico’s first overwater bungalows called “palafitos” complete with private pool, outdoor shower, 24/7 room service, private restaurant and more. Wow!

Sandals La Source Grenada – One of Sandals newest resorts, and one of its best, Sandals La Source has a number of unique butler service suites plus excellent service provided by a top quality team under exceptional management. Our favorite butler suites include the SkyPool in the Italian Village, South Seas One Bedroom with Private Pool and South Seas Rondoval with Private Pool. All include the service of a guild trained butler who attends to your every need day or night. Grenada also earns a “best food” vote with specialties enhanced by locally grown spices and creative preparations offered in a wide variety of restaurants.

Paradisus La Perla – Modern with generous sized junior suites, this adult only all-inclusive resort is one of the few in Playa Del Carmen to offer personalized butler service.  With Royal Service, you will not only enjoy a butler to discreetly attend to all your needs, but a private lounge for check in and check out, ala carte restaurant for breakfast and lunch exclusive to Royal Service guests, private pool with swim up bar and private beach area.  And while you relax poolside, your butler will bring the mojito of the day.  Finicky about your food, no problem! This resort can please even professional chefs, as we have sent them with glowing feedback.  Butler service, elegant resort, Playa Del Carmen location, this adult only all-inclusive resort has it all!

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St Regis – While not an adult only all-inclusive resort, St Regis Bora Bora is decidedly adult oriented and meals can be included as part of a vacation or honeymoon package. At St Regis Bora Bora, the superb service begins with check in on a private yacht and continues with butler service greeting upon arrival. In fact, butler service has been a hallmark for years at St Regis and we suspect an inspiration to many other resort groups such as those mentioned above. Dining at St Regis is as inspirational as the exotic Tahitian setting with Lagoon by Jean Georges setting the bar with Villa Mahana for best restaurants in the South Pacific.

So if your travels take you to the Caribbean, Mexico or Bora Bora and butler service is on your wish list please call or email for further assistance. We’ve stayed at all the resorts recommended plus many more and would be delighted to help you plan the perfect, pampered getaway!

 

Best Spots for a Fall Destination Wedding


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Destinations weddings are understandably popular and fall weddings offer incredible value so where are the best spots for a fall destination wedding where the weather is ideal and photos will be as beautiful as the bride? There are many great choices in Hawaii, the Caribbean and South Pacific but here are a few of our favorite destinations for a fall wedding –

  • Maui
  • Jamaica
  • Barbados
  • Antigua
  • Fiji
  • Bora Bora

Maui was recently chosen as the #1 island in the world by Trip Advisor with a wealth of activities and accommodations to suit every budget. Hawaii is popular for destination weddings year round but when kids go back to school in the fall, prices drop. So Maui and the other Hawaiian Islands are a great value for a fall destination wedding. Busy brides will find Tracy Flanagan an excellent resource to help them find the perfect venue and Totem Travel can make travel arrangements easy whether it’s two of you on the beach or a group requiring contracts and blocked space.

Jamaica also made the top 10 list but some couples worry about the Caribbean for a fall wedding because of hurricane season. Important news flash! According to US Travel and News Reports, Jamaica is a great choice for fall and winter travel and July through November is the best time to visit Barbados. Other good choices for fall destination weddings would be Antigua and Aruba, both drier islands and south of the normal storm path.

Combined with great weather year round, the Caribbean has adult only and family friendly all inclusive resorts which offer free destination weddings and fall wedding groups at Sandals and Beaches Resorts earn every 5th room free and special extras such as a rehearsal dinner, reception with signature cocktails and customized wedding theme. These kinds of deals make a fall destination wedding in the Caribbean one of the best values around.

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Tahiti, Fiji and the the South Pacific islands’ best weather is May through October and storms rarely make an appearance before February. The Fijian Islands make it easy to be married with toes in the sand and couples often spend less than an hour on legalities. Adult only resorts like Matangi Private Island Resort offer an exotic intimate setting, romantic beachfront bungalows and you can charter the island for the ultimate private destination wedding group!  There are also family friendly resorts in Fiji perfect for a wedding on the beach or in a chapel.

Bora Bora in THE place for an overwater bungalow with it’s pristine lagoon and gorgeous sunsets but symbolic weddings are more popular in Tahiti than legal ceremonies because of the time and expense involved. However legal weddings are possible in Tahiti and some things are definitely worth the wait!

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So how do you get started planning your fall destination wedding? Every couple and situation is different but making a few decisions up front and working with a destination specialist will make the process easier and more enjoyable. So think about whether you want family and friends to attend your wedding and if you’d like a simple ceremony or elaborate customized affair. Then call, request a quote or email Linda or Patty at Totem Travel and we’ll help with the rest. We know all the islands, resorts and wedding packages and look forward to making your special day picture perfect!

Best of the Best Sandals Travel Agency for Seattle’s Totem Travel


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Totem Travel was once again recognized as Best of the Best Sandals Travel Agency at Sandals’ annual STAR awards ceremony held at a favorite adult only beachfront all inclusive resort, Sandals Whitehouse in Jamaica. Totem Travel, located in Kirkland Washington, also retained Sandals’ prestigious Chairman’s Royal Club standing given to a small number of travel agents generating top sales for Sandals and Beaches Resorts located throughout the Caribbean islands.

Totem Travel remained one of Seattle’s top travel agencies for 2015 as recognized by the Puget Sound Business Journal and participates regularly at the Seattle Wedding Show where owner Linda Martindell and top agent Patty Houghton help honeymoon couples choose the best all inclusive honeymoon based on their wish list and budget. Totem Travel’s specialties are tropical destinations worldwide, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Africa.

Requests for a customized quote can be made online and appointments are available for complimentary in person and phone consultations. Call (425) 821-4100 or (800) 321-7907 or email linda@totemtravel.com.

Le Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast, Italy’s best seaside destinations


Narrow paths suspended above the sea wind along a stunningly beautiful and rugged section of Italy’s northern coast connecting five villages called Le Cinque Terre. Farther south, a narrow two lane road twists and turns through the tiny towns of Positano and Amalfi with pastel buildings clinging to cliffs high above the Mediterranean. Italy’s most beautiful seaside destinations, the Amalfi Coast and Cinque Terre, have much in common. So how does the Cinque Terre compare to the Amalfi Coast and should you include a beach destination as part of your vacation in Italy?

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Logistics play a major role in this decision with the Cinque Terre much more accessible from Florence and Milan and the Amalfi Coast closer to Rome and Naples. But there are other factors to consider including weather patterns, what you like to do while on vacation, the style of accommodations you most enjoy and budget. Both destinations offer jaw dropping ocean views, glorious sunshine and the opportunity to relax far from the frenzy of Rome, Florence and Venice but the Cinque Terre offers a simpler, more casual vacation experience while the Amalfi Coast is more glamorous and romantic.

In both locations ordinary tourists and foodies are enticed to enjoy Italy’s “slow food” and linger in cafes and restaurants with lovely views and menus filled with fresh from the net seafood, farm to table fruits and vegetables, handmade pastas, the world’s best gelato, excellent local wines, espresso in all its forms and pizza, calzone and focaccia as they were meant to be. Dining in the Cinque Terre is diverse and and it’s possible to enjoy an excellent meal with wine for $25. Amalfi Coast dining is more sophisticated and prices a bit higher but a very important note to celiac and gluten free travelers – with proper research you can dine extraordinarily well throughout Italy including the Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast. La Dolce Vita!

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The Cinque Terre is an outstanding destination for walkers, hikers and those comfortable with clean but simple accommodations and a laid back atmosphere. For those that prefer full service hotels and resorts, Rapallo, Santa Margherita and Portofino offer more deluxe accommodations near the Cinque Terre and have easy train connections. Monterosso is the largest of the villages and an excellent base from which to explore Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore. The public beach is large by Italian standards and several of the Cinque Terre’s best hikes begin nearby including the spectacular seaside trail and a fabulous trek from Corniglia up to Volastra then back down to the sea and Manarola with its boat filled streets.

On the way down Manrola

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The Amalfi Coast is made for romance with a more sophisticated “James Bond” ambiance. Here you’ll find glamourous seaside resorts, upscale shopping and gourmet dining mixed with simple cafes and family run hotels.  The two most famous towns along the Amalfi Coast, Positano and Amalfi, are connected by a hair raising and heart stoppingly beautiful coastal drive. The drive is best left to professionals and public buses are an inexpensive transportation choice for those not bothered by motion sickness. There is also a passenger ferry which runs between Positano and Amalfi during high season, roughly mid April through mid October, as well as private drivers and water taxis.

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Positano is the largest of the Amalfi Coast towns and nearest the Naples airport with ample shopping, a wide range of accommodations and lovely long stretch of beach with lounge chairs and umbrellas for rent. Smaller and utterly charming Amalfi has a beautiful cathedral and piazza and connects by a short walk with tiny Atrani. Sleepy Praiano lies midway along the coast and high above the sea are the villages of Ravello, Pontone, Nocelle and Pogerola.

After hectic days sightseeing in Rome, Florence and Venice, many Amalfi Coast visitors choose to relax on a sun drenched terrace or beach with views of the Mediterranean but more active travelers can hike the Path of the Gods, visit nearby Pompeii or Heraculeum or pop over to Sorrento or Capri, both popular day trips from the Amalfi Coast. There is something for everyone in Italy so please call or email if I can help you plan an Italian vacation or honeymoon to the Cinque Terre and Amalfi Coast

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Travel agent sells Sandals Resort packages at lower price than Sandals online


Shocking news, but in this day of online discounts you can find Sandals Resort vacation packages at a lower price through Totem Travel than online. True, Sandals advertises a $35 incentive for booking online but they don’t always offer the best price on packages and Totem Travel, a Preferred Sandals Agency, can beat www.Sandals.com, Expedia and Orbitz while offering personal service and expert advice.

As the owner of Totem Travel and one of three Sandals Specialists, I sat down this morning to plan a client’s trip and do the research necessary to ensure I offered the lowest price while maximizing time at the resort using a reasonable air schedule. In the end I beat www.sandals.com by $303 along with Kayak, Orbitz and Expedia for the identical package (screen shots are available).

How can Totem Travel offer a lower price on Sandals Resort packages than online and be 100% in compliance with Sandals no discount policy? It starts by working closely with our clients to establish goals, then we add a few decades of travel industry experience, the flexibility to shop all channels for airfare and resort, and the willingness to spend the time and go the extra mile for our customers.

We can’t always beat the other guys but we always meet or beat them and guarantee the lowest price on all Sandals vacation packages. So here are 5 reasons to work with a travel agent and Sandals Specialist rather than book online when you plan a Sandals honeymoon or all inclusive vacation.

1.       We will find the best deal.

2.       We will point out what’s important, good and bad.

3.       We fix problems so you don’t have to.

4.       We make it simple!

5.       If your dream doesn’t fit your wallet we’ll suggest options that do.

We already talked about Totem Travel’s guarantee for the lowest price on a Sandals Resort package so I’ll elaborate on the other advantages of working with a travel agent that specializes in Sandals Resorts.

Unlike Sandals’ reservation staff we will point out good and bad features of a resort, room category or island. No need for days on Trip Adviser or elaborate spread sheets comparing unfamiliar destinations and confusing room names. We have been to all the Sandals Resorts and go back every year so will share what you need to know not just what you asked about. Plus we don’t work for Sandals so won’t hide the bad stuff!

Sandals does a great job and the vast majority of guests are highly satisfied with their all inclusive vacation experience but problems happen and we have clout with management to get them resolved if they affect your trip. We also pamper our clients and understand this is all about you, so whether your arrival is delayed, you have a special room request or need a gluten free vacation we can help. Totem Travel is a Preferred Sandals Agency, recognized as “Best of the Best” every year at Sandals Travel Agency Recognition awards and we’re members of Sandals’ prestigious Chairman’s Royal Club. In the photo below Patty is wearing the short black dress accepting one of several awards at this year’s ceremony. (I was on safari in Africa but more on that later!)

We love Sandals Resorts but many consumers are confused by the advertising, fine print, conflicting resort specials and what their final cost will be. We give you a simple bottom line price and guarantee there is nothing offered online, at the resorts or emailed to repeat guests that we can’t offer. We even guarantee the lowest price after you book. We also make it easy to choose the best resort, decide if a butler suite is worth the cost or plan a destination wedding. So let’s keep it simple and work together to find your dream vacation.

We sell a LOT of Sandals honeymoons and vacations but we sell other adult only all inclusive resorts and destinations as well. So if your dream doesn’t fit your budget we can suggest something that does whether in Fiji, Mexico or Hawaii. So what’s keeping you? Call or email a Preferred Sandals Specialist at Totem Travel today!

P.S. The newest resort, Sandals Barbados, opened yesterday to glowing reviews.

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Design your dream wedding at Sandals Resorts


How easy is it to design your wedding at an adult only all inclusive Sandals Resort? Very easy and it’s all online!  I decided to check out this new tool, so pretended I was a bride choosing colors, cake styles, flowers, linens…the whole works! It was really quite fun, and very simple.  Let’s get those creative juices rolling!!

  • Go to Sandals web site
  • Click on Wedding and Honeymoons and then Design.
  • Choose your island
  • Now your color pallet.
  • Once you have selected your colors, choose your bouquet, boutonniere, and any other flowers you would like, such as table decorations, bridesmaid’s bouquet, and mother’s corsage.
  • Click on the quantity you’d like and the cost will be displayed.

At the end, a $500 Wedding credit will be subtracted and your total wedding cost calculated. And here’s the best part…. If the price is over or under your budget, just go back and add or delete items. No stress, no high pressure sales pitch, just the information you need to plan a dream wedding at Sandals!

Sandals is well-known for its free weddings, but not everyone is aware that the only requirement to snag that free wedding is a 3 night minimum stay and that’s in any room category not just top of the line luxury butler suites!  Many resorts offer free weddings but require 10 or more rooms booked as a group to qualify for the free wedding.  Sandals has a minimum too……one!

Many couples, particularly second marriages, don’t want the stress of planning a big wedding, worrying about photographers and caterers, and everything else that goes into planning a wedding. But they do want to mark the occasion with a romantic ceremony and Sandals Beautiful Beginnings Wedding is just the ticket!  It’s free, and still customizable!! Sandals also offers pre-designed wedding themes, which are available, at an additional cost.  The really cool thing is that within each package you can mix and match from the other pre-designed weddings.  Don’t like the center piece pre-selected for the Flutter of Romance package, but you love the one from the Vision in White?  No worries, just select the one you like!  I think this is one of the best features of the pre-designed weddings…you can personalize the themes!   There are 6 themes, so there’s plenty of options from which to choose.

Sandals understands that each couple likes to make their own choices, but still want to stay within their budget.  Each and every qualifying wedding is entitled to a $500 Wedding credit to be used to design your wedding.  Currently, Sandals is offering a bonus credit of $500 to enhance your Weddingmoon.  You can use the bonus to cover the government fees (which vary depending upon which island you chose), excursions, or even to upgrade your room.  So that’s $1,000 toward your personalized wedding!

As you may be aware, Sandals Resorts are all-inclusive, adult only, couples only resorts, however, many couples want to have either their own children, or nieces and nephews at their wedding.  No worries!  Beaches Resorts, which is the family side of the Sandals Resorts, is for everyone!   The same wedding options that are available at Sandals Resorts are also offered at Beaches family friendly all inclusive resorts.

With Sandals and Beaches Resorts on 7 Caribbean Islands, and 17 resorts available…more coming….I know that you will find the perfect match for you and your intended!  As a Sandals and Beaches Preferred Agency, Totem Travel has 3 Royal Chairman’s Club Specialist on staff and we have been to every single Sandals and Beaches Resort.

If an all inclusive honeymoon or Destination Wedding is in your future, whether it be just the two of you or a group of friends and family….please contact Totem Travel.  We can help you choose the best resort, select the perfect room category, make sure you get the best specials and deals and create the wedding and honeymoon of your dreams. We’re even offering wedding show specials for honeymoons booked by March 31, 2015 so call us!

 

 

Staying healthy and fit on an all inclusive vacation


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Indulge yourself or diet? You can do both on an all inclusive vacation!  Shape up, warm up , chill out and exercise. On your next vacation you can start the road to fitness with yoga on the beach,  fine tune your golf or tennis game with a pro, keep your sculpted beach bod in perfect form with state of the art equipment or morning run and still have hours to relax and enjoy the good life. It’s all possible on an all-inclusive vacation. But will a never ending supply of beautifully prepared meals and desserts plus fun, fruity, calorie packed cocktails tempt you off your diet? Or will vegetarian meals and low carb restaurant selections be difficult to find? Not if you choose the right resort!

The best all-inclusive resorts cater to a variety of guests and can easily accommodate most dietary needs and restrictions. They also offer health conscious food and drink choices and numerous opportunities to stay fit while enjoying a relaxed getaway. Some resort groups, such as Zoetry, focus on health and wellness as part of their luxury inclusions. Others, including Sandals and Beaches Resorts, guarantee diet and allergy friendly foods at every restaurant. So you’ll find it easy to manage a low cal, low fat diet or enjoy a gluten free resort vacation without extra effort or expense.

So what’s most important to you? An awesome tennis program, the latest pilates equipment or miles of beach for walking or jogging? Here are some of my favorite “stay fit while indulging” choices after decades of vacationing at some of the best all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean:

  • Panoramic oceanview fitness center with state of the art equipment and sunken chaise lounges surrounded by cushy, canopied pool beds at Iberostar Grande Bavaro Punta Cana.
  • Kick your butt Boot camp, fabulous frozen mudslides and hammocks slung over a meandering river pool at Excellence Playa Mujeres.
  • Oceanfront, feet in the sand, feeling the  vibe yoga and gourmet dining with fat grams and calories discretely noted at Zoetry Agua.
  • Zumba with a hunky instructor and 12 miles of beach for long walks plus gluten free brownies and beer at Beaches Turks and Caicos.
  • Health bar with yummy fruit smoothies, an Olympic size pool for laps and breezy oceanfront verandah suites with plantation shutters at Couples Swept Away in Jamaica.
  • Pilates, spinning and decadent crème brulee at The Royal in Playa Del Carmen.
  • Water aerobics, scuba diving and wakeboarding plus low cal and gluten free choices at Café de Paris and a 90 minute East Indian spa treatment at Sandals Whitehouse.

By watching portions, staying active and choosing wisely I’ve returned from dozens of all inclusive resort vacations with nary an extra pound. You can do it too, so happy travels!

 

 

 

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