January 29, 2008

Yeah mon!

It feels like it's been forever since my last post but I've been soaking up the sun and the sea so please forgive me. We spent the last week in Negril, Jamaica and it was PERFECT. I considered hopping on-line to post for appx 2.5 seconds and then went back to sipping my pina colada and reading under my palm tree on the beach. Bwa ha ha ha!

Here's a quick review I know, I know, quick never means short when I say it, it means you have to read faster than usual. Mike and I took off to Jamaica with our friends Jessy & Colin and stayed at the Riu Tropical Bay last week; it was a superb resort. We spent a week at a Riu in Cancun a few years back and loved it, we were pleased to find that this resort held up to the last one we visited - I would definitely recommend this chain to singles, couples and families. The staff was friendly for the most part, the entertainment crew was excellent and the food was delish. The buffet food was really excellent and I'm rarely impressed with buffets. Mike is a 'selective eater' aka picky and he raved about the food as well. Overall I would give the resort 4.5 stars.

We stayed at the Grand Palladium in Mexico for our wedding last year and although the resort itself was nicer in Mexico the food and staff (except for on our wedding day) brought it down a tiny bit for me so I would have given it a 4. We've been spoiled and spent one week for the last three years at a Sandals resort and they definitely get 6 stars - so damn good they get a bonus star.

We were in the older section of the resort originally but there was a flood in our room the first night so when we went and politely complained the next morning the management was excellent and moved us into an ocean view suite - beautiful view!!

Looking to the left from our balcony
Looking to the right at my man

Not only did they move us but they sent us a bottle of rum and a fruit plate the next evening with a letter telling us they hoped we were pleased with our room and enjoying our stay. The day after that they called the room to ask us whether everything was ok. Every time we saw the manager he asked us personally if we were happy. I swear we were nice when we complained, granted there was smoke pouring from my ears since I was holding back from snapping but I was polite!! Fabulous service!

The beach was absolutely fantastic: 3 km of beach around the bay we were in, we could access appx 2 km of the beach and the last bit was private. We were able to walk to the Riu Negril and could eat, drink and play there too if we wanted - we had lunch there one day and it was yummy. The ocean was warm and clear and blue andahhhh.... I love swimming in the sea.

We could walk all the way to the end of the Riu Negril: the white buildings

The shows were superb on a few nights. A killer steel drum band one night, reggae bands on two, or was it three, other evenings. One of the reasons I love Jamaica so much is because of the music, rarely were we tortured with cheesy dance music, there were reggae bands wandering up and down the beach that would stop and play for you for a tip. On our last evening a band stopped on the path below our balcony and played a few songs as the sun went down - such amazing memories.

We went on one outing and it was super fun. A catamaran cruise to Rick's Cafe. They stopped at a reef so we could snorkel and woo hoo Mike is a pro! It was his first successful snorkeling attempt and he loved it. I'm stoked - this means we can go on snorkeling trips when we go away from here on in! Yay! The second stop was at some caves where we swam in and looked around. Finally we made it to Rick's and it was awesome!

Rick's from the water on our way out - the sun was just starting to go down.

What a view! It's basically a restaurant/bar on top of some cliffs overlooking the ocean - there are tables sitting in the pool and cliff divers to watch.

From our table at Rick's
The guys diving were crazy, they were jumping off of tiny boards nailed to trees high above the cliffs - probably 60 feet from the waters surface, maybe a bit higher. Nuts.

One of the divers flipping as he dove.

There were also cliffs that visitors could jump from, they were 35 feet from the ocean... and I jumped! Colin went first and then I did it. Super scary but so fun! I think that my man has a whole new respect for me now, although now he figures there is no good reason for me not to fly down a mountain on a bike next to him: "if you can jump off that you can mountain bike no problem."

I think this series shot that mike took is funny - what you can't see is the look of terror in my eyes as I stepped off the cliff.

Next trip to Negril we'll cab to Rick's and stay for longer, it would have been fab to watch a sunset from there although the sunset from the catamaran was still beautiful!

I am certainly not complaining BUT after last years three week vacation (wedding and honeymoon) this trip went by in a flash. We just started getting used to being lazy and relaxed and then it was time to go home. Next time we hope to go away for two weeks... in the meantime I'm grateful for the one fabulous week I had with my awesome husband and two of our best friends. What a fantastic "almost our anniversary" trip!


Anonymous said...

My eyes are tearing up because you could only go for a week....really they are...oh sorry thats my eyes watering from choking on my hot tea that I was drinking while reading your blog.Poor baby, I am sorry that you could only get away for one week, I understand, I really do.
The Mommie.
PS I am glad that you had a great trip and that you missed a lousy week of snow here. M

Jaime said...

I can feel the love in that comment mom. Such sincere sympathy - thanks! The funny thing is that I know you DO get it. Seems greedy doesn't it?

Oh well... we work hard for our vacations so wishing for an extra long one isn't really so bad is it?