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● LIVE WELL

5 MUSIC FESTIVALS WHERE SIGHT AND SOUND COLLIDE

● BE WELL

INDULGE WITHOUT SACRIFICING WELLNESS

● T R AV E L W E L L

SAVOR THE FLAVORS AND EXPLORE LOCAL CUISINE

SUMMER 2016 C O M P L I M E N TA R Y

Jamaica Today

WHEN TRAVEL ADVICE BECOMES CLICHÉ, IT’S TIME TO VISIT JAMAICA, WHERE THE ENTIRE ISLAND IS OFF THE CHARTS.


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FEEL THE SPIRIT OF MEXICO. DISCOVER FIESTA AMERICANA RESORT COLLECTION.

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On the golden sands of Uvero Alto beach, CHIC by Royalton Luxury On theprovides golden sands of Uvero Altoan beach, CHICand by Royalton Luxury Resorts discerning adults exclusive social vacation Resorts provides discerning an exclusive social vacation experience. At this resort, guestsadults sip premium cocktails,and sample masterfully experience. thismix resort, guestsinsipanpremium cocktails, prepared foodAtand & mingle elegant yet relaxedsample resortmasterfully ambience. prepared food and mix & mingle in an elegant yet relaxed resort ambience. Singles, friends and couples spend hard-earned vacations and bring Singles, friends and couples spend hard-earned vacations and bring honeymoons, birthdays or ‘just because getaways’ in ways only CHIC can honeymoons, birthdays or ‘just because getaways’ in ways only CHIC can deliver. The exceptional design here means every memory and the photos deliver. The exceptional design here means every memory and the photos that capture them are vivid and stylish with rich attention-to-detail. that capture them are vivid and stylish with rich attention-to-detail.

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Spring/Summer 2016

CONTENTS FE AT U R E S

Jamaica Today

40 Does “get off the beaten

path” or “beyond the beach” sound too familiar? When great travel advice becomes cliché, it’s time to visit Jamaica, where the entire island is off the charts.

B Y L I S A B E T H D AYA N

Savor the Flavors

50 Exploring local cuisine will bring a blend of color, history and culture to your palate—and incomparable richness to your travels.

Rafting on Rio Grande, Jamaica

B Y H E AT H E R S T E I N B E R G E R

D E PA R TM E N T S 5 PUBLISHER’S LETTER 6  I NSIDE SCOOP Vacation Coaches share upgrade secrets. 9  W HO WHAT WHERE Summer music festivals, top new resorts, Disney presents Star Wars, the local side of Hawaii, international coffee origins, and great film locations. Plus, the best sunglasses for your face.

THE

TIPSTER

22  S POTLIGHT The Explorean Cozumel offers excitement and exclusivity. And Lat20 is the sleek, new go-to in Playa del Carmen. 27 I NSIDER Expert blogger Lee Hersh talks healthy travels. 28  D ESTINATION WEDDINGS A bride gets her perfect wedding in Playa Mujeres.

■ Might not be on the registry, but it’s on the wish list. Try the wedding gift trend and give the gift of travel.

Cover image from Chris Ford/Offset | Rafting image from Getty Images

32  S TYLESHEET Accessorize your way through destinations. 34 F IELD GUIDE Two coasts with playful landscapes in between. Get out there, in Costa Rica. 36 G EAR UP Great travel apps to enhance your globe-trotting. 59  T RAVEL LISTINGS Premier resource guide to hotels and destinations.

■ It’s not spam! Sign up for airline fare alerts, it’ll pay off.

■ Take a vacation from the screens and pack the playing cards, board games and word searches.

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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Savings up to 55% off the published rate. Offer valid for new bookings made now for travel April 12, 2016 through December 23, 2016. Savings may vary by date. Based on a minimum 3 night stay, 1 child per 1 adult paid, limited up to 2 children per room. Children aged 12 and under. Blackout dates may apply. Offer may be changed or withdrawn at any time. Not responsible for errors or omissions. The Hyatt Ziva and Hyatt Zilara trademarks and related marks are trademarks of Hyatt International Corporation. © 2016 Hyatt International Corporation. All rights reserved. © 2016 Playa Resorts Management is the Exclusive Operator for Hyatt Zilara and Hyatt Ziva. All rights reserved. PLA07130316

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Publisher’s Letter

C H I E F E N G AG E M E N T O F F I C E R

Bill La Macchia, Jr. E D I TO R

Ellen Friebert Schupper A S S O C I AT E E D I TO R S

Heather Steinberger Lisabeth Dayan

Start Your Journey Here

C R E AT I V E D I R E C TO R

Kevin Kriehn

A S S O C I AT E C R E AT I V E D I R E C TO R

Evan Stremke

A R T D I R E C TO R

Gina Wittnebel D I R E C TO R O F P R O D U C T I O N

Jennifer Law-Myles

A D V E R T I S I N G S A L E S D I R E C TO R

Lyndsey North

S A L E S M A N AG E R

Deb Orlin

P R O J E C T M A N AG E R

Al Nennig

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

Nick Argires Erin Christman Ali Coates Lisabeth Dayan Sheldon Rusch Samantha Smith Heather Steinberger David Thimmesch

S E N I O R I N T E R AC T I V E S T R AT E G I S T

Fred Ziegler

CONTACT US QUESTIONS:

info@hereandbeyondmag.com S TO R Y I D E A S :

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sales@hereandbeyondmag.com

Here & Beyond Magazine is published twice yearly by The Mark Travel Corporation. © Copyright 2016, The Mark Travel Corporation. All rights reserved.

at the mark travel corporation, we embrace the idea of traveling beyond comfort zones—at home as well as on vacation. Within the pages of Here & Beyond, you’ll embark on a journey with us, one that will introduce you to new destinations, interesting people, hot trends, and the many ways you can infuse your own life with adventures, wellness and the spirit of discovery. In this issue, our experts will show you how to access the true heart and soul of Jamaica, and how to enrich your travel experiences through regional cuisine. We’ll unveil Disney’s plans for new Star Wars-themed lands, take an intimate look at The Explorean Cozumel, introduce you to Lat20 by Live Aqua and share the story of an unusual—and unforgettable— Mexican wedding. We’ll also provide insider tips for exploring Costa Rica, and for staying true to your personal wellness journey while on vacation. We’ll reveal our top picks for travel apps, destination-inspired jewelry and sunglasses to suit your face shape, and we’ll have some fun with travel horoscopes. As an added bonus, our experienced Vacation Coaches will weigh in on the many advantages of upgrading your room category; trust us, these are perks you won’t want to miss. And, throughout the pages of this magazine, keep an eye out for valuable tips that demonstrate why discerning travelers rely on their travel agents. As you go on this journey with us, we’ll give you the tools you need to make these experiences your own. You’ll find plenty of inspiration to start your vacation planning here—with our family of vacation brands, featured resorts, in-destination experts and our network of Vacation Coaches, who are ready with our signature End-to-End Customer Care to help you find your beyond. I hope you enjoy the magazine and are as passionate about its message as I am: Live well, be well, travel well.

readers: Publication requests, questions can be made at www.hereandbeyondmag.com postmaster: Address changes can be sent to The Mark Travel Corporation c/o Materials Distribution, 9240 N. 107th Street, Milwaukee, WI 53224 Printed in Wisconsin. Information provided valid as of 06/01/16.

Best wishes,

BILL LA MACCHIA, JR.

Chief Engagement Officer, The Mark Travel Corporation

CST#2009218-20

GET UP TO

$300 OFF YOUR NEXT VACATION Photo by Anthony Giacomino

Tell us what you think of Here & Beyond and receive a promo code for future travel, courtesy of The Mark Travel Corporation. To complete the survey and for more details, visit hereandbeyondmag.com/survey.

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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Vacation Coaches

Inside Scoop

Room Upgrades: Tried and true tips from experienced travel pros. C AT I O

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It’s easy to declare, “I need a vacation.” With so many options, however, picking a destination and accommodations can be a little more complicated. And once you’ve selected a location and a place to rest your head, figuring out whether it’s worth it to opt for certain amenities and upgrades can feel downright daunting. Expert insights can be invaluable, so we recently chatted with a few travel pros to get answers to the most common upgrade questions.

Butler service at Sandals Resorts is a real treat. Each personal butler is trained in accordance with exacting standards by the Guild of Professional English Butlers, which provides butlers and valets to nobility and celebrities worldwide. — G ARY C. SADLER, SENIOR VP OF SALES, UNIQUE VACATIONS, INC.

COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT UPGRADING? Some guests think a room upgrade will be available when they check in and that they’ll get a deal if they wait until arrival, but the opposite is true. Hotels open with a small number of upgrade rooms, and they’re usually the first to sell out. — S TEPHEN LORD, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 17 YEARS; DENVER, CO

Finest Playa Mujeres

People might be afraid that an upgraded suite will increase their budget substantially, but when comparing all the VIP perks you get for the small increase, you truly receive value for your money. —NB FAVORITE UPGRADE AMENITIES?

RECOMMENDED ROOM CATEGORIES? At Sandals Resorts, it’s worth booking within Club categories to have access to the concierge for dining reservations and other needs that might arise. — J ULIE L ANHAM, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 29 YEARS; AUGUSTA, GA

I suggest oceanfront rooms so guests can hear the waves at night and morning. I also suggest rooms with private pools or swim-up suites. — MARK HENNIGAN, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 9 YEARS; HAMPSTEAD, MD

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At the Finest Club within Finest Playa Mujeres, you’ll enjoy a private lounge, beach and pool areas. — N ATALIA BOSCHI, SALES & MARKETING MANAGER, EXCELLENCE GROUP LUXURY HOTELS & RESORTS

Guests who book the Rock Royalty Level get to work with a personal assistant. Even before arrival, they will offer assistance for restaurant reservations, tours and spa appointments. — S TEFANO SILVESTRI, DIRECTOR OF

BENEFITS TO EXPECT WITH UPGRADES? Some people think the room category doesn’t matter if they don’t plan to spend much time in it, but you don’t want to miss perks like plunge pools, more space, private club access, or special dining options. — R OSE GR AY, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 30 YEARS; OSHKOSH, WI

CUSTOMER REL ATIONS, HARD ROCK HOTEL & CASINO PUNTA CANA

Guests may receive spa or resort credits, and some may include a nice beach bag to use. Some upgraded rooms may include private transfers to the resort. — S USAN PEAVEY, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 26 YEARS; MARSHFIELD, MA

Private beach sections with attentive wait staff. You can just relax there drinking, reading and falling asleep under your own palapa. —SL Private check-in, special amenities, access to a VIP lounge, discount at the spa, and lounge chairs on the beach. — K ADIA DARBY, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 4 YEARS; BRONX, NY

For more information about our Vacation Coaches, visit hereandbeyondmag.com/ vacationcoach


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$1,800 Limitless Resort Credit based on a 7-8 night consecutive stay per room. Bookings of 3 nights receive $500, up to $750 with a 4 night stay, up to $1,500 with a 5-6 night stay, up to $2,000 with a allwillfinal adsof all transactions 9-11 night stay and up to the equivalent of $2,500 with a stay of 12-13 night stay and up to $3,600 with a stay of 14 nights or more. A 20%place service fee apply supplier over the final price using the Limitless Resort Credit promotion on all services or products available at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana, Hard Rock Hotel Cancun, Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, and Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta. Service fee can only be paid with cash, room charge and credit card. Service fee cannot be paid with the remaining Limitless Resort Credit promotion balance. Other restrictions may apply. HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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PARADISE IS WAITING PLAN YOUR NEXT VACATION WITH STARWOOD HOTELS & RESORTS Whether your dream getaway takes you to the sandy shores of Florida, city sightseeing in San Francisco or a famous golf course of Arizona, you’ll find luxury for less in the world’s most desirable destinations. CALL YOUR TRAVEL PROFESSIONAL TO BOOK WITH ONE OF THESE PREFERRED BRANDS: FUNJET VACATIONS, UNITED VACATIONS, OR SOUTHWEST VACATIONS.

THE ST. REGIS BAL HARBOUR RESORT, MIAMI BEACH, FLORIDA

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of 2016 Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., or its affiliates. Design Hotels is a trademark of Design Hotels. 8trademarks SUMMER HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM


W Who What Where

MUSIC

Come Together

Take music appreciation to a whole new level this summer. esc a pe to a pl ace w h er e sigh t a n d sou n d col l ide, creating a colorful sea of music, culture and crowds. To a time reminiscent of Woodstock, where flowers are tucked behind ears and basslines reverberate in your chest. Where people from all walks of life come together to share a drink, a campsite, some laughs and plenty of memories—all under the spotlight of the sun. — Ali Coates

BRAVO! VAIL MUSIC FESTIVAL Vail, CO

LOLLAPALOOZA Chicago, IL

OUTSIDE LANDS MUSIC & ARTS FESTIVAL San Francisco, CA

BUMBERSHOOT Seattle, WA

MUSIC CITY FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL Nashville, TN

JUN 23-AUG 6

JUL 28-31

AUG 5-7

SEP 2-4

SEP 17-18

One of NPR’s top 10 “Can’t Miss” Classical Musical Festivals, where a variety of acclaimed performers and world-renowned orchestras will share everything from classic staples to curated programs of jazz and pop.

Four days. 160,000 people. More than 170 alt-rock, punk, EDM and hip hop performances. Plus, its 25th anniversary. All taking place in Chicago’s front yard, Grant Park, host to a killer view of the Chicago skyline.

This eco-friendly fest, located in the heart of the Golden City’s vibrant cultural community, is the ultimate destination for cutting-edge music fans, wine aficionados, art enthusiasts and comedy lovers.

Seattle is wellknown for music and greenery, so it’s only natural that this 3-day festival packed with music and arts is in the middle of an urban park. In true Seattle spirit, both visual and literary arts, dance and theatre reign just as much as the line-up.

Image from Getty Images

What better place to rock out than Music City itself? This festival is held in the historic venues and airy outdoor spaces of downtown Nashville and features top chefs as well as awardwinning artists.

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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W

Hyatt Ziva Cancún

RESORTS

Best New Resorts

An inside look at happening hotels and recent renovations. B Y DAV I D T H I M M E S C H

Hyatt Ziva Cancún

Meliá Braco Village Jamaica

Holiday Inn Resort Orlando Suites

WHEN: December 2015

WHEN: January 2016

WHEN: June 2016

WHERE: Punta Cancún, Mexico WHY WE LOVE: At this unique beachfront

resort, guests can have lunch at an all-American diner with a Chevrolet parked inside, book a dolphin-view room and enjoy specialty house beers at the on-site brewery. All without leaving the property.

WHERE: Runaway Bay, Jamaica WHY WE LOVE: This

family-friendly, fivestar resort features 287 rooms and suites, a kids’ club, a full-service spa and a hearty dose of signature Jamaican hospitality. Plus, its proximity to Main Street allows guests to explore nearby restaurants, bars and shops.

Four Seasons Oahu at Ko’Olina WHERE: Ko’Olina, Oahu, Hawaii WHEN: June 2016

WHY WE LOVE: Nestled on Oahu’s sunny west coast near the Ko’Olina Golf Course, this luxurious property is both chic and modern, with sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean. Its distance from Waikiki ensures a relaxing vacation while also providing guests with opportunities for island adventures.

Meliá Braco Village Jamaica

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WHERE: Orlando, Florida

WHY WE LOVE: While complimentary transportation services to area attractions and theme parks are available, your family won’t want to leave. The resort’s two waterparks feature heated pools, 13 slides, water towers, plenty of play areas, and cabanas equipped with flat screen TVs and minifridges. Plus, the new kids’ spa offers hair and nail services as well as fun air-brushed tattoos.

Four Seasons Oahu at Ko’Olina


The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Waikiki Beach

Riu Republica

Excellence El Carmen

WHEN: Summer 2016

WHEN: June 2016

WHY WE LOVE: Located at Arena Gorda

WHEN: September 2016

WHERE: Waikiki, Oahu, Hawaii WHY WE LOVE: This

is the first RitzCarlton Residences property on Oahu, and it’s the newest addition to the Waikiki skyline since 2009. Guests will appreciate the Ritz-Carlton’s own distinctive brand of luxury—not to mention the jaw-dropping Pacific Ocean views.

WHERE: Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Beach, this adults-only, five-star resort is ideal for watersports such as windsurfing, kayaking, snorkeling and diving. It features infinity pools, solarium terraces, steam rooms, Jacuzzi and beauty salons, as well as several restaurants with cuisine ranging from Italian to Asian.

WHERE: Punta Cana, Dominican Republic WHY WE LOVE: Inspired by the warm colors

in its natural environment, this tropical getaway captures the Caribbean’s uplifting yellows and calming blues. The secluded adults-only luxury resort offers 23 pools, a world-class spa and 24hour room service.

Loews Sapphire Falls at Universal Orlando WHERE: Orlando, Florida WHEN: July 2016

WHY WE LOVE: The many waterfalls at this Caribbean-themed paradise infuse the resort with a relaxed, otherworldly vibe. The property also incorporates a signature rum bar and complimentary transportation to both Universal theme parks.

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Loews Sapphire Falls at Universal Orlando

Excellence El Carmen

Riu Republica

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“I always recommend upgrading to at least a club or concierge level and ocean view for a honeymoon. This is a special trip, and you deserve a special category to make it memorable.” — DIANE DOMIANO, TR AVEL PROFESSIONAL FOR 12 YEARS; TIMONIUM, MD

Ritz-Carlton Residences Waikiki Beach

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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W Your Travel Horoscope

Image from Getty Images | Illustrations by David Zimmerman

When it comes to finding your perfect vacation destination, it can be helpful (and fun) to look to the heavens. B Y S A M A N T H A S M I T H

AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19

PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20

ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20

TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21

GEMINI May 22 - Jun 21

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22

Aquarians are naturally curious and seek uniqueness.

Laid-back Pisces cares more about finding peace than cell reception.

Adrenalinepacked adventures will leave an Aries starry-eyed.

Geminis are social butterflies, preferring crowds and culture.

Perfect matches: The rich history of Berlin and intriguing ruins of Peru.

Perfect matches: The spiritual setting of Japan and easygoing vibes of Jamaica.

Perfect matches: The surf swells of Australia and buzzing city of Dubai.

Taurus is all about indulgence —think fine dining and utter relaxation.

These homebodies seek family-friendly accommodations and comfortable surroundings.

LEO Jul 23 - Aug 21

VIRGO Aug 22 - Sep 23

Leos love the luxe life, desiring glamorous locales and culturally rich retreats. Perfect matches: The sparkling lights of Paris and upscale suites of Hawaii.

Perfect matches: The wineries of Italy and sulfur springs of St. Lucia.

Perfect matches: The diverse streets of London and beach parties of Playa del Carmen.

LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23

SCORPIO Oct 24 - Nov 22

SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 22

CAPRICORN Dec 23 - Jan 20

Virgos like to plan, so keep them busy with an organized itinerary.

Easygoing Libras adapt quickly to new cultures and adventures.

Perfect matches: The architecture of Rome and variety of the Virgin Islands.

Perfect matches: The safaris of Africa and cultural opportunities of Cuba.

Independent Scorpios love romance, relaxation and exploration.

Curious, restless Sagittarius needs a full schedule to get the most out of a getaway.

Perfect matches: The unique landscape of Aruba and canals of Venice.

Perfect matches: The festivals of Germany and story-filled Acropolis of Athens.

Capricorns are passionate about history and desire plenty of sightseeing opportunities.

Perfect matches: The resorts of Punta Cana and quiet coastal villages of Scotland.

Perfect matches: The majestic architecture of Prague and local culture of Ireland.

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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W

DISCOVER

The Other Faces of Hawaii

5 Ways to experience the islands like a local. STROLL THROUGH THE VILLAGES • Walk through neighborhoods, eat in local restaurants, and browse the shops in places like Kilauea and Hanapepe on Kauai; Holualoa and Honoka’a on the Big Island; Makawao and Ulupalakua on Maui; and Haleiwa and historic Downtown/Chinatown on Oahu.

Artist rendering of the new Star Wars-themed Land

TH ER E’ S B EEN A N AWA K ENING

Coming Soon!

Disney breaks ground on Star Wars-themed lands. B Y H E AT H E R S T E I N B E R G E R

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it’s official: Disney has started construction on Star Wars-themed lands at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. At 14 acres each, these attractions will be Disney’s largest single-themed land expansions in history, allowing guests to travel to a never-before-seen planet and a remote trading post, where Star Wars C AT I O characters and stories come to life. VA “We are creating a jaw-dropping new world,” says Bob Iger, Walt Disney Company chairman and CEO, “including an epic Star Wars adventure CO ACH that puts you in the middle of a climactic battle between the First Order and “Get the Disney the Resistance.” Another attraction will put guests dining plan at behind the controls of the Millennium Walt Disney World. Falcon as they take on a customized The value is fansecret mission. tastic, and you can While waiting for the Star Warschoose from more themed land to open its doors, you still than 100 restaucan have adventures in a galaxy not too rants, including far away. “Star Tours: The Adventures Continue” features more than 50 story character dining outcomes and the possibility to visit and dinner shows. five different planets, while Jedi TrainThe dining plans ing allows you to learn the ways of the include the meals, Force, put your skills to the test against beverages and the Dark Side, and meet a new villain. even snacks. A And, Space Mountain has temporarily few restaurants upgraded to Hyperspace Mountain.

include the gratuities, too.”

— DEB ORLIN, FUNJET VAC ATIONS

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SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM

Visit disneyparksblog.com for updates and southwestvacations.com for travel information.

VISIT THE FARMERS MARKET Meet the locals, and see their locally grown produce and flowers. Check out the Big Island’s Hāmākua Harvest Farmers Market at Honoka’a, as well as the KCC Farmers Market on Diamond Head Road. •

ATTEND LOCALS’ EVENTS • We suggest Waikiki Ho’olaulea on Oahu; Makawao Rodeo and County Fair on Maui; and the Ukelele and Slack Key Guitar Festivals, May Day Festivals and Aloha Festivals held on all the islands. EXPLORE A DORMANT VOLCANO Did you know that the quietest place on earth is the crater of the Haleakalā volcano in Maui’s Haleakalā National Park? It’s also one of the best places to watch the sunrise. You can stop at a lookout with crater views, but for a more immersive experience, explore it on foot or on horseback.

HIKE WILD MAUI The remote Maunalei Arboretum’s hiking trails provide unforgettable access to the West Maui Mountains, part of an eroded shield volcano that last erupted 320,000 years ago. Don’t miss the waterfalls and the secluded beach. •

To find out more, ask your travel professional about Blue Sky Tours or visit blueskytours.com.

Maui


A COFFEE TOUR

Tropical Origins of Your Favorite Cup of Joe

has exceeded production. No wonder. It’s fantastic coffee. Perhaps best known among connoisseurs is Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. Grown in the island’s Blue Mountains, a region known for its favorable climate and geography, this high-quality coffee boasts a sweet taste and distinctive scent. Only coffee grown at more than 3,000 feet can claim the Blue Mountain label.

B Y A L I C OAT E S

Hawaii: Beyond the Beaches Ideal coffee-grow-

for many of us, mornings simply cannot begin without coffee. Yet we don’t often think about where it comes from, or how countless people around the world share our devotion—and even rely on it to support their families.

ing conditions require high altitudes, tropical climates and rich soil, and there’s only one U.S. state that fits the criteria. Hawaii has been producing coffee since the mid-19th century. Even if learning that Hawaii is a coffee-growing state surprises you, the term “Kona coffee” might ring a bell. Pure Kona coffee is a rare commodity. It’s exclusively grown in north and south Kona, where the high elevation, constant clouds and rich volcanic soil from Hualalai Volcano create an ideal environment. There are hundreds of coffee farms in Kona, from the small art town of Holualoa to Kealakekua, and many offer public tours.

A coffee plantation in Costa Rica

Connecting to the World Through Coffee When you Costa Rica: The Path of Sustainability More than

70,000 farmers grow coffee in Costa Rica, and more than half of them belong to cooperatives. Organizations like Fairtrade International and the Rain Forest Alliance work to secure better rights and salaries for small farmers. Fair trade certification promotes environmental, social and economic sustainability, and it often emphasizes shade-grown and organic coffee; meanwhile, cooperatives bring together

Image from Getty Images

small farmers to help secure better bargaining prices for their products.

Mexico: Coffee as a Livelihood Mexico is one of

the largest coffee-producing countries in the world, and it’s the largest producer of organic coffee, accounting for approximately 60 percent of the world’s production. The vast majority of Mexican coffee is grown by small farmers in Chiapas and Oaxaca. Coffee is one of Mexico’s most lucrative

exports, and close to half a million small farmers rely on it for their economic survival. While we joke about needing coffee to get through a Monday, many Mexicans truly do depend on it to make a living.

Jamaica: Blue Mountains Majesty For its relatively

small size, this island nation produces a whopping amount of coffee—more than 4.6 million pounds annually. Most is exported, and in recent years, demand

think about the difference coffee makes in the lives of the countless people around the world who work hard to bring it to a coffee shop near you, you quickly realize how this one small cup of coffee just connected you to a culturally rich, dedicated global community. And, if you visit one of these coffee-growing regions and join one of the many available plantation or roastery tours, you’ll also have the opportunity to connect in person. Your cup of joe will never taste quite the same again. ■

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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INDULGE

WANT ROMANCE?

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An insider’s guide to the top romantic resorts for 2016. B Y E R I N C H R I S TM A N

BELOVED PLAYA MUJERES By Excellence Group Cancún, Mexico • A champagne breakfast in bed, a couple’s massage, a secluded beach and a romantic dinner in the moonlight—this adults-only resort offers the perfect mix of pampering, gourmet dining and fun activities. We love the impeccable service, private location, marina, Greg Norman golf course and sheltered beach. HIDEAWAY AT ROYALTON Riviera Maya, Mexico • This 340-room, adults-only boutique resort is a hotel within a hotel, offering access to all of Royalton Riviera Cancún’s amenities while also providing tranquility, an exclusive a la carte restaurant and bar, and sublime adults-only pool.

‘Dr. No’ was filmed in Jamaica

O N L O C AT I O N

A Taste of Hollywood Popular vacation destinations provide the ideal backdrop for 5 beloved films. B Y DAV I D T H I M M E S C H

‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ was filmed in the Dominican Republic

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL Dominican Republic • Set in the 1600s Caribbean, this fantastical high seas adventure— turned haunting ghost story—was partially filmed in Samaná.

THE VENETIAN LAS VEGAS Las Vegas, Nevada • We would be remiss if we didn’t mention The Venetian. Imagine: a gourmet breakfast in your private suite, a candlelit dinner in St. Mark’s Square, and an enchanting gondola ride for two. This is Old World-style romance. C AT I O

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The Venetian Las Vegas

TITANIC Baja California, Mexico • This epic film was shot in Rosarito, on a shoreside replica of the doomed ship and in Baja Studios’ giant water tank.

ACH

“Sandals Love Nest Suites provide ultimate luxury and privacy in some of the most unique accommodations. These suites take a romantic getaway to a new level with impeccable attention to detail and breathtaking views.”

DR. NO AND COOL RUNNINGS Jamaica • This 007 classic, and its famous scene with Ursula Andress emerging from the sea, was filmed in Ocho Rios. Cool Runnings, which told the story of Jamaica’s first Olympic bobsled team, also was filmed in Ocho Rios and in Montego Bay. FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL Oahu, Hawaii • Attempting to cheer himself up from heartbreak, the main character takes a vacation on the north shore of Oahu. JURASSIC PARK Kauai, Hawaii • Although the story’s setting is a Costa Rican island, the actual filming location was the magnificent Garden Island.

— IAN ANDERSON, UNITED VAC ATIONS

SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM

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What’s more fun than rocking the beach hair look? GET TING IT STR AIGHT FROM THE SOURCE. When you’re looking for fun, you need the real deal. With Funjet Vacations, you get just that; the real part – and vacations with value. With insider knowledge of Mexico, Hawaii and the Caribbean, connections to over 70 airlines, and 24/7 unmatched service we ensure your trip is effortless. Ready to really let your hair down? Contact your Funjet Agent or visit Funjet.com.

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Finding Frames that Fit Your Face BY SA M ANTHA SMITH

tr ends come a nd go. But your face, well, it’s forever. That’s why it’s important to pick accessories that complement your features. So before you grab some classic aviators or splurge on those sporty new Wayfarers, consider your face shape and choose a style that accents your assets. In most cases, the best approach is to pick frames whose shape is opposite your face. Not sure which category you fit? Grab a mirror and check the list below, where we’ve rounded up a few stylish suggestions. Oval Lucky beachgoers with this perfectly balanced face shape can rock just about any style. Just avoid jumbo frames that block all your features.

Rectangular Oversized round frames will perfectly complement this elongated, angular shape.

Try these: TOMS Beachmaster 301 Havana Tortoise, $139, toms.com

Try these: Gradient Sunglasses with Tortoise Frame, $17, target.com

Try these: Sunski Dipsea Seafoam Slate, $55, sunskis.com Also available at Nordstrom and Athleta

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SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM

Try these: Oakley Holbrook, $120, oakley.com Also available at Buckle, Sunglass Hut, Eastbay

Wide lower frames with curved or rounded tops will broaden the jawline and understate the forehead. Try these: RayBan Aviator Gradient, $160, ray-ban.com Also available at Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Macy’s

Own your shade by wearing a hat.

Illustrations from Getty Images

Shades with curve appeal are the perfect match for this shape. Pick round or oval lenses to pair with your strong jawline.

■ You no longer have to choose between sunscreen and makeup, most foundations have SPF.

Pick up a pair of frames with funky angles or square lenses to flatter the natural curves of your face.

Heart

Square

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■ Sunglasses aren’t only stylish, they’re a necessity, protecting your eyes from UV rays.

For more style tips, check out our videos at funjetinsider.com.


Illustrations from Getty Images

Experience two jaw-dropping theme parks, spectacular on-site resort hotels, unique dining & entertainment and more. Take your vacation to the next level at Universal Orlando® Resort.

NEW RIDE SUMMER 2016 SKULL ISLAND: REIGN OF KONGSM

Call your travel agent to book with one of these preferred brands: Funjet Vacations, United Vacations or Southwest Vacations HARRY POTTER characters, names and related indicia are © & ™ Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Harry Potter Publishing Rights © JKR. (s16 ) TRANSFORMERS and its logo and all related characters are trademarks of Hasbro and are used with permission. © 2016 Hasbro. All Rights Reserved. © 2016 DreamWorks L.L.C. and Paramount Pictures Corporation. All Rights Reserved. Cabana Bay Beach Resort © 2016 UCF Hotel Venture II. All rights reserved. Universal elements and all related indicia TM & © 2016 Universal Studios. © 2016 Universal Orlando. All rights reserved. 1616084/VF

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Spotlight

Binge-Worthy Adventure Travel At The Explorean Cozumel, discerning guests will find a unique blend of expeditions, amenities and a tantalizing concept known as “spontaneous cuisine.” BY SHELDON RUSCH

O One day you’re snorkeling on a Caribbean reef, hoping for a personal encounter—or at least meaningful eye contact—with the Cozumel Splendid Toadfish. The next day you’re climbing a Maya ruin, seeking to unlock the secrets of Ix-Chel, Goddess of the Moon. Have you become the star of your own adventure travel series? In a way, you have. It may not be a show… at least, not yet. But it’s definitely a series, and it’s one you’ll want to binge on. At The Explorean Cozumel, you’ll have that opportunity and more. The resort’s concept is unique: provide exceptional creature comforts in the remote setting of the natural world, with the aquamarine brilliance of the Caribbean and the magic and mystery of the Maya jungle just outside your door; then, add a healthy dose of adventure and discovery.

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“The idea is to give our guests a unique way to disconnect from the everyday world, explore some things about themselves and spend quality time with their loved ones,” says Mauricio Moncada, The Explorean’s director of sales. That series thing we mentioned? It’s an exclusive of this all-inclusive. Here’s a quick preview of The Explorean’s daily expeditions and adventures. Each day, the hotel offers one-of-akind guided expeditions and adventures exploring Cozumel, Mexico’s largest and (in the eyes of many) most beautiful Caribbean island. Today, you’ll sail the ocean for an up-close look at its unfathomable beauty and diversity. Tomorrow, you’ll be tooling in a dune buggy to the hidden cove of San Martin Beach to spy on the island’s nesting sea turtles. The next evening, you’ll kayak to Passion Island by the light of the full moon and return to a candlelit gourmet dinner on the beach. And that’s just the first three days. The way your Explorean hosts and guides see it, Cozumel is a truly special place, unlike any other on the face of the earth. So your experience here should be absolutely unique, exciting and unforgettable. Then, of course, there’s The Explorean itself, where you’ll soon discover that your exploration of the island is complemented perfectly by the exquisite nature of the hotel. It’s intimate, friendly and ideally suited for me time, or we time. Because as much as The Explorean caters to the sense of adventure, there’s an equal focus on the art of relaxation. All of the rooms are casitas (aka bungalows), with a contemporary look and calming vibe. You’ll appreciate the plush beds and premium bedding, and the daily delivery of fresh bread, coffee and juice will emphasize a buenos días better than the smilingest emoticon. “The rooms offer exclusivity and tran-

ABOVE: The tranquil pool is surrounded by lush vegetation. RIGHT: The spacious

and earthy lobby at The Explorean.

BELOW: Biking in Chankanaab National Park is one way guests can explore the island. LEFT: The Yucután’s Maya ruins.


quility,” Moncada adds, “with the atmosphere of the jungle, and the beach just steps away.” There’s also a lovely pool with a jungle view. Perfect for exploring the special relationship between a cool drink and a warm ocean breeze. And did we mention the restaurant? Breakfast, lunch and dinner feature locally sourced ingredients and a chef with worldclass expertise in the art of “spontaneous cuisine.” This means there is no set menu; rather, you’ll find a creative carte du jour based on daily fresh market offerings. And (this is the best part), your chef will prepare dishes according to your indi-

vidual requests. So don’t hold back. At The Explorean, you’re able to explore your own culinary creativity without all the bother of cooking and cleaning up. One final detail. You’ll notice there’s another hotel, just next door—the Fiesta Americana Cozumel, sister property to The Explorean. As an Explorean guest, you’ll have total access to Fiesta Americana’s beach, pools and restaurants, should you wish to explore them. Based on guest history, we put the probability at about 100 percent. Wondering if The Explorean experience might be a tad too ambitious? Relax. It’s all good. Daily expeditions fall into the active lifestyle category. It’s a lot like that travel series we mentioned. You’ll find plenty of pure excitement, but always with a support crew right there, just slightly off-camera. And for those who want more intensity, additional side trips and activities will provide an effective outlet for that extra adrenaline. So turn it on, and get ready to binge on The Explorean Cozumel, a tailored getaway that delivers every time. ■ Vacation packages to The Explorean Cozumel are available through your travel professional or at unitedvacations.com.

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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Spotlight

On the “It” List The new, adults-only Lat20 by Live Aqua opens its doors in the heart of Playa del Carmen. BY SHELDON RUSCH

L Last November, on the Quintana Roo mainland, a new adults-only hotel opened its doors on Playa del Carmen’s celebrated Quinta Avenida (5th Avenue). If you’re seeking a tropical vacation for you and your partner or a group of friends in a hotspot with a distinctly urban vibe, Lat20 by Live Aqua is worth a closer look. Lat20 is the latest manifestation of Cancún-based Live Aqua, the all-inclusive resort that elevated the lifestyle hotel experience to an art across Mexico. At the center of the Live Aqua experience is the engagement and fulfillment of each guest through aromas, visuals, sounds, tastes and textures. Now, with this first adults-only offering, the sensory level has been set to 10. Although it just might go to 11. Rooms are spacious with a hip, boutique-style ambiance and great attention to detail. Guests can find restoration and relaxation at the Lat Spa and world-class dining through the signature dishes at the El Mural, Asian Playa, Chef’s Kitchen and Sushi & Tapas restaurants. The little cafe and deli provides snacks, sweets and hot beverages for guests on the go. Then there is the unforgettable rooftop. Here, guests will enjoy a stunning pool and a creatively designed bar and restaurant area that evokes the colorful architecture of San Miguel de Allende and the vibrant history of Mexico. ■ Learn more about Lat20 by Live Aqua through your travel professional or at funjet.com.

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SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM


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Insider

Fit & Fun in Jamaica

BE ADVENTUROUS WITH FOOD. Sandals Ochi’s Reef Terrace restaurant showcases Pan-Caribbean and Jamaican foods. Think conch chowder, snapper, jerked chicken, tamarind beef tenderloin and roasted yams. While on site, Hersh had the opportunity to make ackee and saltfish alongside the chef. This traditional Jamaican recipe combines Jamaica’s national fruit, ackee, with salted codfish, fresh vegetables and spices. It’s often served with rice and beans cooked in coconut milk. “Definitely try the local cuisine,” Hersh says. “You might discover flavors and ingredients that you never thought you’d like but are absolutely amazing.”

Expert blogger Lee Hersh shares the best ways travelers can fully enjoy their island experience without sacrificing wellness. B Y H E AT H E R S T E I N B E R G E R

in fall 2015, f u ll-time blogger Lee Hersh traveled with Funjet Vacations to the new, all-inclusive Sandals Ochi Beach Resort in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, seeking to experience the destination through fitness and food. She recently sat down with Here & Beyond to share what she learned.

ENJOY YOURSELF, BECAUSE YOU ARE ON VACATION.

INCORPORATE MOVEMENT INTO YOUR DAILY LIFE.

Fresh seafood, vegetables and fruits are mainstays of the Jamaican diet, and visitors should eat as many whole foods as possible. One of Hersh’s personal strategies was to focus on clean eating at breakfast, incorporating whole grains and fresh fruits. “It started the day off right,” she says, “and it provided some balance, especially when I knew there would be cocktails later.”

“Activity shouldn’t be something you’re dreading,” Hersh advises. “Have fun with it.” In Jamaica, it’s startlingly easy to do that. The island nation’s best feature is also your single best resource for an active lifestyle. “The ocean is the most beautiful thing,” she adds, “and at Sandals, you can try so many water sports, including stand-up paddleboarding and snorkeling.”

SLOW DOWN, UNPLUG, AND REALLY CONNECT.

Photo by Brooke Aho, Brooke Alexandra Photography

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF RESORT AMENITIES, INSIDE AND OUT. Be sure to check out what the resort has to offer. For Hersh, Sandals 100acre property proved to be a fully equipped base camp. “For starters, they have a great gym,” she says. “They also have an awesome rock wall.” This trained Yoga Sculpt instructor also suggests that yoga enthusiasts take time to practice on the beach.

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You can follow Lee Hersh online at fitfoodiefinds.com. To learn more about planning your own Jamaican adventure, call your travel professional or visit funjet.com.

■ Farmers markets are a great way to find fresh, local food and to interact with the locals.

Burn calories without noticing by exploring a new place on foot or by hiking scenic trails. ■

In Jamaica, life moves at a slower pace. Hersh encourages vacationers to make a concerted effort to slow down, too. Not only will you rest and recharge, you’ll be more fully present—and have an opportunity to connect with local people. “In America, we move at the speed of light,” she says. “Take this opportunity to get away from your phone, your email and the Internet. Enjoy every moment.” ■

■ Large cities have bike-sharing programs. Enjoy a ride and see the sights in a new way.

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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Destination Weddings

Sarah and Robert Schmidt celebrate being married at Finest Playa Mujeres.

Exactly for Us

A nontraditional bride seeks a low-key, one-of-a-kind wedding—and sees her vision come to life thanks to a trusted advisor and friend. B Y H E AT H E R S T E I N B E R G E R

when Sarah Schmidt got engaged a little over a year ago, she didn’t have what might be considered normal bride feelings. Instead of excitement, joy and an eagerness to get started with wedding planning, the Wisconsin bride-to-be felt something more akin to ambivalence. “I’ve never been a person who historically got excited about weddings,” muses Schmidt, an advertisingagency executive who lives and works in the Milwaukee area. “I didn’t dream

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about it as a child. I’ve never liked being the center of attention.” Schmidt’s top priority was to bring friends and family together for quality time. Even the ceremony didn’t matter that much to her. “I don’t do something just because it’s traditional,” she adds. “So I wanted a wedding celebration that would be right for us.” Schmidt immediately turned to the prospect of a destination wedding. While exotic locales such as Bora Bora crossed her mind,

she recognized that many family members had never been out of the country and might be apprehensive about the experience. “Mexico was a perfect choice,” she says. “Everything was easy and manageable; not only did the Funjet team put me first, they put all our guests first as well, every step of the way. Plus, I didn’t have to worry about the details as they were handled so well.” For Schmidt, the benefits of planning their wedding getaway through Funjet

■ Does your honeymoon include snorkeling, hiking or swimming with dolphins? Don’t lose that new wedding band! Slide on the functional silicon Qalo ring and be ready for any adventure.

SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM

didn’t stop there. The family-owned company also offers complimentary, professional wedding concierge service through Weddings by Funjet. “I plan events professionally, all day every day,”Schmidt explains. “I wanted someone to do this for me, who would be both a trusted advisor and a friend.” That person was Paula Coffaro, an experienced wedding concierge. And she jumped right in. “As a wedding concierge, I work hard to build a relationship with the couple that’s built upon trust,” Coffaro says. “They’re looking to me as not only an expert, but as someone who understands their own unique needs and can guide them effectively through every step of the process.” That process, Coffaro pointed out, involves more than the details of the wedding itself. “It’s easy to get absorbed with the wedding, but I encourage couples to look at their priorities for the entire experience and determine what’s most important to them,” she explains. “They need to consider the feel of the resort, its amenities, the available activities and excursions, the types of food and beverages they will most enjoy, and their own personal style.” Coffaro followed Schmidt on Pinterest to get a feel for her preferences, listened to her questions, and worked closely with staff at Finest Playa Mujeres to create the one-of-a-kind experience Schmidt wanted. Schmidt discovered Finest, a new Excellence Resorts property, while on a

Qalo Rings qalo.com

Wedding Photo by Andrew Feller, 414 Photography | Beach Reception Image from Finest Playa Mujeres


As a wedding concierge, I work hard to build a relationship with the couple that’s built upon trust.

Introducing Finest Playa Mujeres by Excellence Group

— PAUL A COFFARO, WEDDING CONCIERGE

business trip in the Mexican Caribbean. Although the resort was still under construction at the time, the location, beach and friendly staff appealed to her. “I love that family of resorts,” she explains. “I liked the Excellence Playa Mujeres very much, but it’s adults only. Finest is all ages, and it was important to us that my fiance’s 5-year-old niece would be able to attend.” “It also was the right choice for us because it’s a moderate-sized property,” she continues. “We had nervous travelers, so we wanted a variety of restaurants on site, plus all the activities and pools. Our guests would never have to leave the property if they didn’t want to.” Schmidt and her fiance, Robert, selected December 5, 2015 as the big day. Thirtytwo guests made the trip to Playa Mujeres, and once everyone was on site, the festivities kicked into high

Beach wedding reception at Finest Playa Mujeres

gear—including an unusual bachelorette party. “Twelve of us went to swim with dolphins,” Schmidt recalls. “It was a really fun, hands-on experience. We swam with them, holding onto their dorsal fins, and they launched us out of the water like we were flying!” Then there was the rehearsal dinner, which exploded into a full-blown Packers party. “It was a Thursday night, and we all got together in the sports bar,” Schmidt says. “That was the Green Bay Packers-Detroit Lions game, where Aaron Rodgers threw a Hail Mary. It was such a memorable experience, and it got us talking about Mexican miracles.” It wasn’t the last such miracle. The day before her nuptials, Schmidt learned the forecast called for an 80 to 90 percent chance of rain for the entire wedding day. Sure enough, she woke to drizzle and gray skies.

Just north of Cancún, the seaside resort community of Playa Mujeres welcomes visitors with miles of white-sand beaches, a pristine natural landscape and its own distinct variety of laid-back luxury. It’s here that Excellence Group chose to build its brand-new Finest Playa Mujeres, which officially opened in February of 2015. While the all-inclusive resort does accommodate all ages, it also provides a blend of privacy and openness for those celebrating such treasured occasions as weddings, honeymoons and anniversaries. “We like to share the luxury and the love,” said Alejandro Lazcano, marketing director. “So we provide a multi-age environment that enhances your individual experience as well.” To that end, the resort’s Excellence Club provides adults-only luxury in a private, tucked-away setting. Guests enjoy express check-in service in a private VIP lounge, fresh flowers upon arrival, fresh fruit delivery and premium amenities. Essentially, this is a resort within a resort, boasting a private bar, pool area, restaurant and 24-hour concierge service. Upgrades include a swim-up suite, twostory rooftop terrace suite with private plunge pool, and the world-class Imperial Suite. Then there is the all-ages Finest Club, where grown-up privacy coexists with amenities designed especially for children. This includes express check-in, late check-out, welcome gifts, fresh flowers and private lounge areas. Club suites have private patios or balconies, with swim-up suites and rooftop terrace suites also available. (Adults are free to take advantage of the adults-only resort areas, as well.) And, foodies can savor the flavors at nine allinclusive dining options, from Caribbean specialties and familiar favorites to a whole world of new taste experiences.

HERE HEREANDBEYONDMAG.COM ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER SUMMER 2016 2016

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Destination Weddings

Beach service at Finest Playa Mujeres

“I was so upset,” she says. “But by the time we went down for our pictures, the storm was rolling out. We got the most beautiful sunset, and we have a photo of us fistbumping a rainbow.” The ceremony itself was low-key, with no wedding

party. The couple’s little niece—clad in a pink tutu— walked Schmidt down the aisle. Coffaro also worked directly with the officiant on ceremony preparations. Schmidt noted that it’s highly unusual for a concierge to

be on site for a wedding, but having Coffaro there meant everything to her. “I wanted the ceremony to be short and sweet, and I was texting Paula right up until the wedding, editing parts of it to make it shorter,” Schmidt says. “I was a nervous wreck. She was so wonderful; she just said, ‘I’ll take care of it,’” and she did.” Afterward, the newlyweds and their guests gathered for a relaxed evening meal. Coffaro and Schmidt ensured there would be no formal announcement of the new husband and wife, and no first dance on a formal dance floor. “When we met with the on-site planner, I think we threw her off,” Schmidt says with a laugh. “But Paula knew me. We had a nice dinner, and then we went to

the beach for a bonfire with s’mores. We all danced in the sand and in the ocean.” They also had a cigar-roller, so guests were able to handroll their own cigars. “My husband and fatherin-law are cigar aficionados,” she says. “They were more than thrilled.” Schmidt said she, her husband and their family members and friends went home with one-of-a-kind memories. “It was very unique, what everyone was willing to do to make the day special for us,” she reflects. “That was huge for me. The experience was just perfect. It was exactly for us.” ■ To learn more, contact your Vacation Coach or visit weddingsbyfunjet.com.

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Image from Finest Playa Mujeres


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Stylesheet

Jewelry That’ll Go The Distance

1

On-trend gems to tuck in your suitcase and dress up your getaway wardrobe. B Y A L I C OAT E S

Planning your vacation attire can be stressful. After all, you want to look your best amongst the gorgeous backdrops when that picture-perfect moment strikes, right? Save some room in your suitcase by letting your jewelry do the talking. Pair the right piece with simple clothing choices, and you could turn one dress or top into a multitude of stylish options. From day to night, laid-back to formal, we’ve got your destination jewelry go-tos.

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1. Barefoot Bohemian Step into the trend of barefoot sandals. Show off your tanned toes with this eye-catching alternative to flip-flops. $34. FreePeople 2. Keep it Simple During the daylight hours of your trip, chances are you’ll be on the move. Add a pop to your outfit without comprising convenience with a long pendant necklace. $58. Anthropologie 3. Bold is Beautiful Go bright or go home. Opt for additional color with a chunky statement necklace to bring your outfit a splash of vibrancy. You are on vacation, after all. $138. J. Crew 4. Add Some Structure Ready to flaunt a flowy dress or soft tank? Pair a geometric cuff with a feminine frock for a chic way to play with contrast. $89 Stelladot.com 5. Make a Statement A pair of statement earrings is all you need to go from a casual day at the beach to a lively night on the town. Tuck your favorite pair in your crossbody bag for an easy-to-grab transition. $48. Baublebar

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■ Keep necklace chains tangle-free by slipping one end through a drinking straw then clasping it.

■ Statement necklace? Enough said. Wear strapless, off-the-shoulder or scoop necklines.

■ Don’t distract. Accompany a bold ring with a fresh manicure.

SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM

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First-time adventures. Lifelong memories. Take away more at IBEROSTAR.

IBEROSTAR Rose Hall Suites, Montego Bay, Jamaica

Welcome to unparalleled service and unmatched memories. At the all-inclusive, IBEROSTAR Rose Hall Suites, families and couples enjoy world-class dining, entertainment and spacious accommodations. All in a picture-perfect setting with kidfriendly hospitality. And yet there’s more. Here, along one of Jamaica’s most stunning beachfronts, IBEROSTAR also delivers service that delights on a higher level, with an exciting splash park, concierge service and 24-hour room service. All this comes together at IBEROSTAR Rose Hall Suites, where you take away feeling like a star. M O N T E G O B AY, JA M A I C A PRE M IUM GOLD

Call your travel agent to book with one of these preferred brands: Funjet Vacations, United Vacations, or Southwest Vacations

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Field Guide

Costa Rica This choose-your-own-adventure country is a lush, tropical playground waiting to be explored. B Y A L I C OAT E S

DIP

Arenal Hot Springs

E XC U R S I O N S

GAZE

Palo Verde National Park ▶ Sitting on the banks of the Rio Tempisque is one of the best wildlife-and bird-watching areas in Costa Rica. Take it all in with a boat tour, and then wrap up the day by sampling local cuisine. 37 miles from LIR

S TAY EXPERIENCE

Tabacón Thermal Resort & Spa ▶ At Tabacón Thermal Resort & Spa, you’re truly immersed in nature. Take a dip in the Tabacón hot springs and gaze upon the awe-inspiring Arenal Volcano, surrounded by a rainforest. 77 miles from SJO or 81 miles from LIR R E T R E AT

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EXPLORE

ENJOY

Occidental Grand Papagayo ▶ Looking for an active getaway? Look no further than Occidental Grand Papagayo. Here, you’ll find plenty of outdoor activities along with tall canopy trees providing a haven of shade to relax or bird watch. 12 miles from LIR

Horseback riding

G E TAW AY

Andaz Peninsula Papagayo—a Hyatt Hotel ▶ Featuring curvedroof cottages as accommodations, this aesthetically quirky resort overlooks calm Culebra Bay. The hotel has partnered with local organizations offering unique volunteer opportunities for guests. 18 miles from LIR

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BOOK

Riu Palace Costa Rica ▶ On the edge of Matapalo Beach, Riu Palace Costa Rica has four outdoor pools and several restaurants and bars, including a swim-up bar. With plenty of water activities the full-service spa is a popular retreat. 19 miles from LIR

VA

C AT I O

CO

N

Barceló Langosta Beach ▶ Nestle in to your oceanside home away from home. The resort provides easy access to several breathtaking beaches and tropical seaside gardens, which are within walking distance. 41 miles from LIR

Arenal Volcano Tour and Hot Springs ▶ After a long day of hiking and exploring the Arenal Volcano, soothe your muscles in the natural hot springs. With a variety of temperatures and features, these springs offer swimup bars and colorful underwater lights. 81 miles from SJO or 81 miles from LIR

ACH

Central American Tours (CATOURS) ▶ This company offers the best of the best in Costa Rica and can help you navigate the different areas on your mustsee list. It provides tours in Guanacaste, Arenal, Central Pacific, Monteverde, Tortugero and San Jose, so get that Costa Rican bucket list ready.

GO

Vida Adventura Nature Park ▶ Whether you’re looking for adventure, relaxation or immersion in nature, Vida Adventura has it all. From zip lining to horseback riding, volcano mud baths to thermal pools, there’s something for everyone at this Costa Rican hotspot. 20 miles from LIR

Costa Rica currently has two international airports. The larger of the two, Juan Santamaria Airport (SJO) in Alajuela, is located in the Central Valley region north of San Jose. The other, Daniel Oduber Airport (LIR) in Liberia, provides access to the northwestern Guanacaste region.

Images from Costa Rica Tourism Institute


Arenal Volcano

N AT U R A L WO N D E R S GOLF

The Westin Golf Resort & Spa, Playa Conchal ▶ An 18-hole championship golf course that offers a par-71, this Robert Trent Jones II-designed course is situated alongside lush tropical gardens with breathtaking ocean views. 35 miles from LIR SUBMERGE

Tabacón Hot Springs ▶ Just 1 kilometer from the hiking trails in the Mirador el Silencio reserve, you’ll find the soothing Tabacón Hot Springs, along with a view of the Arenal Volcano and its distinctive lava trails. 77 miles from SJO or 81 miles from LIR

TRAIPSE

Manuel Antonio National Park ▶ Comprising white-sand beaches, evergreen forests, lagoons and 12 small isles just off the coast, Manuel Antonio National Park is as diverse as it gets. The park is a popular spot for dolphin and whale sightings. 98 miles from SJO WA NDER

Waterfall Gardens at La Paz ▶ Hike among hundreds of species of wildlife, including a new jungle cat exhibit, and take in the majestic views of the waterfalls and tropical gardens. 21 miles from SJO

TREK

Central Volcanic Mountain Range ▶ Experience the true meaning of awestruck while you hike through one of the most naturally diverse areas in Central America. Tours through both active and nonactive volcanic ranges are available, resulting in an enriching and educational experience.

Manuel Antonio National Park GAZE

Province of Guanacaste-Rincon de La Vieja Volcano ▶ Monkeys, steam vents, waterfalls and toucans are just a few of the highlights during a visit to Vieja National Park. Hike the many trails, where critters and natural wonders abound. 44 miles from LIR

TA S T E

IMMERSE

Liberia ▶ Looking to truly experience Central American culture? Take a trip to the sunny capital of Guanacaste province, where mango trees, magnolias and tinroofed buildings line the salty shoreline. 8 miles from LIR

FOOD & C U LT U R E S AVO R

La Cascada Steak House, Escazu, San Jose ▶ Enjoy five-star taste in a laid-back atmosphere at La Cascada Steak House. Known for the best steak in Costa Rica and its down to earth hospitality, this restaurant will keep you coming back for more. 11 miles from SJO E AT

Toro Negro Steak House, Liberia ▶ While specializing in beef, this restaurant’s large menu features a multitude of options, allowing visitors to choose between Costa Rican favorites or international classics like pizza or sushi. 12 miles from LIR

La Casa de Dona Lela, Curridabat, San Jose ▶ Dine like the locals at La Casa de Dona Lela. Its menu includes popular Costa Rican breakfast items, tamales, pork and veggie dishes, and its rainforest décor makes for a fun and energetic atmosphere. 16 miles from SJO FEAST

Aroma Tico, Tilaran, Guanacaste ▶ Keep it simple at this cafeteria-style crowd favorite. Whether you choose a hearty breakfast or lunch plate, served with plenty of pipinghot Costa Rican coffee, you won’t be disappointed with a pit stop here. 50 miles from LIR

Vacation packages to Costa Rica are available through your travel professional or at southwestvacations.com. Waterfall Gardens at La Paz

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Gear Up 4 1 3

2

5

C’mon, Get Appy Getting the most out of your getaway starts at your fingertips. B Y A L I C OAT E S

1. Postagram Turn your snapshots into personalized snail mail for friends and family back home. Just upload your vacation photo to Postagram, type in your message and they’ll take care of the rest.

2. My Disney Experience Your finger is a magic wand as you explore maps, buy theme park tickets, share your itineraries with family and friends and even find character greeting locations and times.

3. Google Translate Google Translate recently launched a new feature: “conversation mode.” Simply open the app, hold the mobile device between you and your linguistically inclined friend, and you’ll have an automatic translator.

4. TripIt This app converts reservation and flight confirmation emails into a single, easy-to-read travel itinerary, automatically adds events to your calendar in chronological order and pulls in maps to help with navigation.

5. WhatsApp With WhatsApp, you can make calls, send pictures, videos, and texts while you’re on your getaway using either Wi-Fi or your phone’s web package without the hefty international charges.

Free for iOS and Android.

Free for iOS and Android.

Free for iOS and Android.

Free for iOS and Android. ($0.99 ad-free version)

Free for iOS and Android.

THE

TIPSTER 36

■ Attach a GPS device to your bag for extra protection and peace of mind when traveling.

SUMMER 2016 HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM

■ Old suitcase? Recycle or donate it. Many nonprofits, shelters and other organizations need luggage.

■ New suitcases are evolving with GPS functions, built-in chargers and all-terrain wheels.


Vacation, holiday, travel. No matter how you say it, it still sounds fun. We think planning your next vacation should be as fun as the vacation itself! With benefits like exclusive savings, bags fly free®*, no change fees**, 24-hour traveler assistance, and no online booking fees, Southwest Vacations® will help you experience the getaway you’ve been dreaming of. Book your next dream vacation at www.Southwestvacations.com. *First and second checked bags. Weight and size limits apply. **Fare difference may apply.

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JAMAICA TODAY: ON ITS OWN PATH BY LI SA B E TH DAYA N

It’s easy to understand

why Jamaica has been the chosen destination for numerous films, the location of endless photo shoots, and a writer’s chosen solace. Even if you haven’t been there, you can easily conjure images in your mind’s eye of lush tropical landscapes, white-sand beaches and turquoise seas—all paired with an infamous soundtrack, starring friendly faces. But there’s so much more. Adventure flows around and through you in this island nation, and you’ll feel an immediate sense of connection with the land, the sea and the people. No matter where you go, Jamaica wears its heart on its sleeveless arm, giving you uncomplicated access to its identity.


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Montego Bay can provide the perfect getaway all by itself. In addition to stunning beaches, the city commonly known as MoBay offers some of the best golf in the West Indies. It’s also where you’ll find the “hip strip,” a lively street lined with bars and restaurants that runs parallel to the sea. According to Funjet Vacations’ Lyndsey North, the original Scotchie’s restaurant is a MoBay must-visit. “If you’re looking for genuine local cuisine, this is where you’ll find it,” says North, who has visited the island nation more than 15 times. “Scotchie’s is known for jerk chicken, pork cooked over pimento wood and sides like rice and peas, yams, sweet potatoes and roasted breadfruit. It’s delicious, and you get to eat outdoors in this incredible atmosphere.” Francine Carter Henry, a manager with the Jamaica Tourist Board, adds, “The very idea of planning a trip to Jamaica brings with it a level of excitement that causes you to salivate before you even get to the airport. Jamaica has a natural beauty that you can only truly experience being here… it is such a unique island. Whether you are looking for hotels, tours and attractions, or simply wanting to be around people who are passionate about delivering memorable vacation experiences, Jamaica delivers. Visiting Jamaica is itself a form of stress relief.” Ruins of old sugar plantations, some with original

It may be tiny, but Jamaica has a huge heart. I’m always in awe that it has, and continues to touch the lives of so many people around the world. The passion, energy, color, vibe, beauty and the people have put this country on the international map in so many different ways. — BARBIE GROVES, UNITED VACATIONS

buildings and mills, surround the area. A visit to the Good Hope Estate is worth it for the views alone. Dee Jones of Southwest Vacations notes that you can see all the surrounding islands from the estate. Today, you can have a glimpse into Jamaica’s past with tours of this 18th century Georgian-style plantation home. The expansive views aren’t just for pictures, it is a popular place to ride ATVs, tube down the river or to see tropical birds in the on-site Aviary. MoBay isn’t all about golf, shopping, views and history, however. Chukka Tours Jamaica, the Caribbean’s leading tour operator, will make sure you get the most out of the area. You’ll have the opportunity to combine your leisurely stroll through the plantation with a dune buggy ride, or you can float the river while others soar on a zip line above. If you’d like to balance out the excitement with beach time, consider staying at a property like Sandals Royal Caribbean, where you’ll have access to a private offshore island. And its Over-TheWater Villas, the first of their kind in the Caribbean, should ensure that your quiet time is just as rewarding as your adventures are. NEGRIL WORLD-FAMOUS SUNSETS

Historic stone boardwalk on Montego Bay

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Due to its prime location on the island’s west coast, Negril is renowned for its sunsets and firstclass beaches. In fact, it has consistently been rated as one of the top 10 beach destinations in the world. And not much will interrupt those expansive sunsets, as there aren’t any structures taller than the nearest palm tree. Seven Mile Beach Negril reflects Jamaica’s casual, easy approach to life. It’s the longest uninterrupted stretch of white sand shoreline in the Caribbean, and staying at resorts like the newly updated Sandals Negril will guarantee beach access. As some interruptions are a good thing, head south until the smooth coastal plain becomes more rugged and exposed, wrestling with seawater. In some spots, the cliffs drop 980 feet to the ocean. Most are not this high, however, which makes them ideal for cliff diving. Otherwise, Rick’s Café is the perfect place to watch others take the leap.

Seven Mile Beach: Jamaica Tourist Board | Boardwalk Image from Getty

MONTEGO BAY JAMAICA’S MOST ENERGETIC CITY


Seven Mile Beach: Jamaica Tourist Board | Boardwalk Image from Getty

Illustration by Jacqui Oakley

The secrets of Jamaica’s landscapes are matched only by those of its seas. According to Jones, catamaran cruises are one of Jamaica’s top attractions. Island Routes, for example, has a variety of catamaran cruises from which to choose, such as Reggae and Lover’s Rock, with jaw-dropping views of those world-famous sunsets. As one of the island’s smaller cities, Negril offers more relaxation than bustle; it is a great place to live the irie (Rastafarian for “alright” and good vibes, often used as a friendly greeting). “The diversity and vibrancy of the Jamaican people truly mirror our country’s national motto, which is ‘Out of many, one people,’ ” adds Barbie Groves, who is from Jamaica and works with United Vacations. You may not need more than your sunscreen and a book, but if you do seek a night out on the town, you’ll easily find live reggae and great restaurants. And you’ll definitely want to try the local cuisine. According to Jones and North, Jamaica also has outstanding soups—especially the pumpkin soup. Made with a different pumpkin variety than those found in the United States, it boasts an unexpected, rich flavor. “(Jamaicans) are the kings and queens of soup,” Jones says. “You stop to eat at an outdoor stand, and there will be a huge kettle over a fire in the ground, cooking the pumpkin soup.”

Seven Mile Beach

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SOUTH COAST A TOPOGRAPHY LESSON The suggestive and incessant beat of the uncharted will lure you along Jamaica’s South Coast. Here, hidden gems lie waiting to be discovered. If you can find it, don’t miss Treasure Beach. It’s a prime area to eat some of the island’s best seafood. The coast is speckled with both black- and white-sand beaches, and swamp safaris through the nearby wetlands allow you to view the area’s alligators and exotic birds. What island getaway is complete without waterfalls? YS Falls has seven falls, each cascading into natural pools. Some of the pools are spring-fed, providing opportunities for luxurious soaking baths among the rushing waters. If you seek an aerial view of this expansive jungle phenomenon, you can take a canopy ride right over the falls. If you’d prefer not to explore the South Coast alone, you can travel along with a tour operator like Jamaica Tours Limited. Enjoy a water safari on the Black River, Jamaica’s longest, and end up at YS Falls. Then, fuel up with plenty of traditional Jamaican foods. Looking to do a little mingling outside the jungle? Don’t miss Jamaica’s Pelican Bar, a truly unique watering hole just northwest of Treasure Beach. Take a small boat about 20 miles out to sea, and you’ll see the wooden structure hovering above the water. Spend your time snorkeling and catching your lunch, then enjoy a cocktail while the chef prepares it for you. Fish not biting? Don’t worry—there’s enough seafood to go around.

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KINGSTON CREATIVITY, CUISINE AND CULTURE With homes and high rises in the hills, Kingston offers an urban setting perched within lush surroundings. Parliament, museums, galleries and history make Kingston a colorful cultural hub, and its nightlife throbs with dance halls, nightclubs, restaurants and bars. Be sure to tour the Bob Marley Museum, which honors the birthplace of reggae music, and take advantage of the city’s duty-free options and robust arts-and-crafts market. While Jamaica is most often associated with beaches and the ocean, its land is one of contrasts. The Blue and John Crow Mountains are one of the highest in the Caribbean at 7,402 feet. They once provided valuable Treasure Beach, Snorkeling, Farmers Market: Getty Images


A JAMAICAN HERO RETURNS

Image Courtesy of Puma

Once again, Usain Bolt will seek gold and record-breaking glory in the Olympics.

To learn more, visit usainbolt.com

TOP CENTER: Snorkelers go swimming with sea life

off the South Coast of Jamaica.

UPPER RIGHT: A local vendor sells fresh fruit at a

farmers market.

UPPER LEFT: Houses

line the shore at Treasure Beach on Jamaica’s South Coast.

BOTTOM CENTER: A

view of the Blue Mountains near Kingston.

This summer marks the first time that the world’s biggest sporting event will be in South America. Will this year’s Olympic Games also provide more celebrated firsts for record-breaking Jamaican athlete Usain Bolt? Perhaps, but one thing is certain—it will be his last Olympic competition. The acclaimed runner recently announced that he plans to retire next year, after the 2017 IAAF World Championships and IPC Athletics World Championships in London.

protection for the indigenous Taino people and later for the Maroons, escaped slaves who established free communities in the island’s rugged interior during the 17th century. The mountains served them well; they defended themselves successfully for years, and eventually they signed a peace treaty with the British. To honor its cultural significance as well as its endemic plant and animal species, the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park was declared a UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) World Heritage Site in 2015. Avid hikers can embark on adventures of varying lengths through the park, but if you’re not quite up for that, be sure to visit the world-renowned Blue Mountain Coffee plantation, which is a short drive from Kingston.

Although Bolt’s successful career began long before the 2008 Olympics, it was in Beijing that he became the first man in Olympic history to win three gold medals and simultaneously break three world records. At the 2012 Olympic Games in London, he defended all of his titles, even breaking his own record in the 4x100m relay. Now, he seeks to break those records and bring home even more gold.

PORT ANTONIO PURE JAMAICA

Enthusiasts will have the opportunity to see Bolt in action at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 5-21.

Port Antonio proves you don’t have to be a celebrity or royalty to frequent exclusive beaches. With places such as Frenchman’s Cove, San San Beach and Blue Lagoon, this tucked-away corner of Jamaica has all the ingredients of an island fantasy. Frenchman’s Cove is a relatively small beach surrounded by dense cliffs. According to legend, it was a successful hideout

Blue Mountain Image from Jamaica Tourist Board

With six Olympic Gold medals, three world records and 13 world championship medals under his belt, Usain Bolt is the world’s fastest man. He was named Laureus World Sportsman of the Year in 2009 and 2010, and he earned the title of IAAF Male Athlete of the Year five times between 2008 and 2013. Yet, running isn’t his only passion, as Bolt remains committed to his home country. Through the Usain Bolt Foundation, the athlete supports a variety of events and fundraisers throughout Jamaica, and he has donated millions of dollars and much-needed equipment to his high school alma mater.

To commemorate its hosting of the 2016 Olympic Games, Brazil will allow U.S. and Canadian citizens to visit the country without a visa between June 1 and September 18. —LISABETH DAYAN

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EDITOR’S PICKS

WHERE TO STAY

Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall and Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall The adults-only Hyatt Zilara and familyfriendly Hyatt Ziva are paradise for golfers and beach lovers, overlooking the Caribbean Sea and located only 15 minutes from Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay. Vacationers staying at either location receive complimentary greens fees for one of two courses. Stays include free airport transfers and special treatment in the complimentary airport arrivals lounge.

Beaches Ocho Rios: A Spa, Golf & Waterpark Resort With a private whitesand beach and all-ages championship golf course, this family-friendly resort is the perfect pairing of “surf and turf.” Parents magazine proclaims this to be one of its Top 10 Best Beach Resorts —unsurprising when you consider the Pirates Island Waterpark. Its winding waterslides might even tempt mom and dad to go for a ride.

Royalton Blue Waters Imagine hotel rooms with private swim-out pools or views of the ocean along the coveted shores of Montego Bay. And that’s just the beginning. This familyfriendly resort provides play all around the property with games, mascots, a water park complete with slides, a lazy river and evening performances at an open-air theatre.

Iberostar Rose Hall Suites Located 20 minutes from Montego Bay Airport, Iberostar Rose Hall Suites welcomes both families and couples. Offering four specialty restaurants, an international buffet and five bars, this hotel is a food lover’s dream. Take a dip in one of six pools, and let the kids have a blast at the splash park. Or, gather the family for a relaxing float down the lazy river before catching a show at the theater at night.

Riu Palace Jamaica Escape to a place of pure tranquility. Riu Palace Jamaica is an adults-only, all-inclusive paradise featuring sun-kissed beaches, a world-class spa and exquisite restaurants. With Montego Bay and Glistening Bay nearby, you’ll discover the treasures of the region in no time. Plus, with the Montego Bay airport less than two miles away, you won’t have to wait long to begin your time in paradise.

Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa Modern design and luxurious facilities collide on the northern coast of Jamaica. Be transported to a state of bliss, natural surroundings and turquoise-blue waters at Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa. Here, you can tantalize your taste buds with something new every day—with seven a la carte restaurants, there’s always something new to try in this tropical paradise.

Riu Negril Newly remodeled with a slick, contemporary style, the Hotel Riu Negril has updated 420 rooms and features new restaurants, bars and children’s areas. Fill up on exotic fare at the new Asian restaurant, Mandalay, or treat your taste buds to something special at the new Kulinarium, where chefs use local produce to combine modern cuisine with Caribbean favorites.

Moon Palace Jamaica Grande Sparkling Caribbean waters, silk-sand beaches and breathtaking landscapes are just a few words to describe Moon Palace Jamaica Grande. Located close to Ocho Rios, a stay at this resort comes equipped with anything you may need. With complimentary round-trip transfers to the airport and 24hour room service, the friendly staff will make you feel like royalty during your stay.

Meliá Braco Village Private colonial villa meets Caribbean Sea breezes at this luxuriously intimate resort. It’s perfect for couples and families looking to relax on a private beach. You can sample a bit of everything at the bar, buffet and five a la carte restaurants offering a variety of international cuisine. The central location between Ocho Rios and Montego Bay provides easy access to the island’s key attractions.

Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort & Private Island This all-inclusive Montego Bay retreat offers a broad range of amenities and activities such as scuba diving, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding and sailing. What’s more, the Over-The-Water Villas and a private island make Sandals Royal Caribbean a true personal sanctuary.


Somerset Falls, Dunn’s River Falls: Jamaica Tourist Board | Authentic Juice Image from Getty Images

OCHO RIOS ACTIVE ADVENTURE AND LEISURE

ABOVE: Somerset Falls

Rain Forest.

UPPER RIGHT: Authen-

tic juices made from pure fruit and sugar water.

LOWER RIGHT: Dunn’s River Falls, Ocho Rios

from pirates. Fortunately, you won’t see any ships over the horizon, so you can still pretend you own the place. Stroll along the shoreline to the spot where the river meets the sea, providing calmer waters. The Blue Lagoon is celebrated for the hypnotic spectrum of blue in its waters, as well as for the movie of the same name (which was filmed in Jamaica and Fiji). Spending time on a boat in the lagoon is the best way to see these colors transform. San San Beach, located between Frenchman’s Cove and Blue Lagoon, is another isolated, private beach. It’s ideal for snorkeling and kayaking, and nearby, a small offshore island provides yet another glimpse of personal paradise. Its hideaway character is one of the most special things about Port Antonio, and to fully appreciate it, you must set aside the well-known and frequently traveled. It’s quiet and hilly, with smaller properties that encourage nature walks and bird watching. It’s worth it to seek out local flora; out of more than 220 species of orchids, approximately 66 are unique to Jamaica.

You can go all-out in Ocho Rios, which boasts Jamaica’s highest concentration of adventure tours and activities that incorporate nature, wildlife, beaches and fun. The Fern Gully is one of those natural wonders. This 3-mile road through the rainforest is an old riverbed, making the drive curvy and tunnel-like. Hundreds of species of fern blanket the ground, while quick-growing mahoe trees (the national tree of Jamaica) stand tall among the medicinal trumpet trees. Walkers Wood village is worth the drive to the end. The spice factory was created to employ the locals, and now it’s an iconic Jamaican establishment. “If you bring home a few spices, you can enjoy the flavors of Jamaica even in the middle of a snowy northern winter,” North says. “I always buy authentic jerk seasoning. Traditionally, it relies on allspice (also called Jamaica pepper or pimento) and Scotch bonnet peppers, but depending on the blend, it also can include ingredients like chiles, cloves, cinnamon, scallions, nutmeg, thyme, garlic, brown sugar, ginger and salt.” This onetime fishing village provides easy access to every possible adventure. You can soar through the rainforest on a zip line, hike or bike the hills, ride a horse along the beach, rappel, kayak, ride a dune buggy, cliff-jump or sail on a catamaran. Consider using local guides like those at Jamaica Tours Limited or Chukka Tours Jamaica to make the most of your time. Their expertise will ensure that you have unforgettable experiences C O N T I N U E D O N PA G E 5 8

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MOON PALACE JAMAICA GRANDE. NOW OPEN. ® The FlowRiderBluefin Double to Wave Simulator. The Playroom kids club. The Awe Spa. It’s a double-check/ total reinvention of all-inclusive, and nowads it’s all here, at Moon Palace Jamaica Grande place all final supplier in Ocho Rios. You may have seen the Caribbean, but you’ve never seen it like this.

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There are so many reasons to book with United Vacations Ready to take the trip of your dreams? You can with United Vacations®. From our best price guarantee to our low deposit plan of $200 down, booking your dream getaway doesn’t have to break the bank. Plus, you can earn additional United MileagePlus® bonus award miles with exclusive offers to destinations and resorts around the world. And should your plans change, we have you covered with our Premier Vacation Protection. That’s why when you book with United Vacations, you can rest assured knowing that we’re here to help you focus on what’s really important – enjoying your vacation.

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Savor the Flavors EXPLORING LOCAL CUISINE WILL BRING A BLEND OF COLOR, HISTORY AND CULTURE TO YOUR PALATE—AND INCOMPARABLE RICHNESS TO YOUR TRAVELS.

Image from Hawaii Tourism Authority

Food is one of the most powerful ways to experience a destination. Whether you’re sampling dried machaca beef or succulent chocolate clams along the Baja Peninsula, grilled fish Tikin Xik in the steamy Yucatán or an overstuffed po’ boy in the Mississippi Delta, you’ll return home with an added appreciation for where you’ve been. Local cuisine celebrates and communicates the history, traditions and spirit of a culture. Exploring a place through its food adds layers to your visit that will provide insight, a sense of connection and, of course, pure pleasure. by heather steinberger 

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A highlight of any vacation is the opportunity to sample the region’s rich culinary heritage through local ingredients like fresh seafood and colorful produce, including tomatoes, mangos, herbs and salad greens.

THE EDGE OF THE MEXICAN FRONTIER

Just a few decades ago, Cabo San Lucas was a modest fishing village clinging to the Baja Peninsula’s southern cape. Today, it’s an ultra-glam getaway for the Hollywood “glitterati,” an oceanfront Scottsdale for those seeking time on its world-class golf courses, and a premier gem in Mexico’s tourism crown. “Baja California Sur didn’t become a Mexican state until 1974,” notes Juan Carlos del Rio of Epic Group Los Cabos. “It’s still one of the least populated areas of Mexico and Latin America, and it has the special allure of a small destination.” It also has become a destination for haute cuisine. In the last 10 years, some of the best chefs from across North America have opened enticing new venues at the cape. Enrique Olvera, one of Mexico’s best-known chefs, is acclaimed for Pujol in Mexico City and Cosme in New York. Last year, he opened Manta in Los Cabos, where guests can experience traditional Mexican cuisine infused with Pan-Pacific influences. “Olvera’s flavors, presentations and colors are simply amazing,” del Rio remarks. Then there is Richard Sandoval, often called the father of Mexican cuisine. He

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has a collection of 40 Latin Americaninspired restaurants worldwide, and at Toro Latin Kitchen, he blends PanLatin cuisine with South American, Japanese and Chinese influences. At Thierry Blouet’s new Café des Artistes Los Cabos, unique dishes are prepared using French techniques and fresh Mexican ingredients from Puerto Vallarta, Guadalajara, Tapalpa and Ensenada. The evolving, avant-garde cuisine honors the convergence and fusion of local and international flavors, and the restaurant’s wine cellar features Baja California’s best. At the Don Sanchez Restaurante, guests will enjoy a 350-label wine cellar, exquisite hacienda-style courtyard and contemporary Baja cuisine. On the menu you’ll find aged steaks and fresh seafood—a nod to the peninsula’s experienced rancheros, and to the expert anglers who ply the biodiverse Sea of Cortez, which Jacques Cousteau once called “the world’s aquarium.” “In Los Cabos, you’ll find everything from street fish tacos to internationally renowned chefs,” del Rio says. You’ll also find emerging chefs who are working hard to bring back an ancient gastronomy. Although Baja California Sur’s Guaycura and Pericú peoples are long gone, these young professionals are determined to unlock the secrets of their culinary wisdom. “Many of these chefs are just out of school, and they’re exploring indigenous recipes and ingredients, like the pitahaya cactus fruit,” del Rio explains.

Don Sanchez Restaurante in San José del Cabo

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Freddy Chi, executive chef at Agave

THE LAND OF THE MAYA

Six years ago, UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) added traditional Mexican cuisine to its Intangible Cultural Heritage list, noting that it’s a “comprehensive cultural model comprising farming, ritual practices, age-old skills, culinary techniques and ancestral community customs and manners.” And the very root of these practices can be found in Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. You may be surprised to learn that you can find the staples of Maya cooking—corn, beans and chili—in the opulent all-inclusive resorts that line Quintana Roo’s Caribbean coast. Freddy Chi, executive chef at the Royalton Riviera Cancún’s Agave restaurant, said he incorporates traditional ingredients into his dishes on a daily basis: chili habanero for salsa, annatto seed for various meat pastes, and corn for tamales and tortillas. “It all comes down to the unique climate of the region, which is suitable for the cultivation of these ingredients,” Chi says. At Agave, guests will enjoy a fusion of Meso-American and European cuisine, as well as unique dishes that bear a distinct Yucatecan influence. Well-known regional recipes include Tikin Xic, grilled fish marinated with annatto and cooked over charcoal, and La Cochinita Pibil, pork marinated with annatto, covered with banana leaves, and slow-roasted in an underground oven using hot stones. “By visiting restaurants like Agave, guests can venture outside their comfort zones to experience new flavors and textures, which we call our ‘pre-Hispanic’ cuisine,” Chi says. “This is the food that is most authentically Mexican and creates a memorable dining experience.” Perhaps one of the most exciting developments on the Quintana Roo food stage involves Ricardo Muñoz Zurita, one of Mexico’s most highly regarded chefs. This prolific author and restauranteur is

Royalton Riviera Cancún's Agave Restaurant

Filet Mignon de Res Sonora at Cafe des Artistes in Los Cabos

working with the Fiesta Americana Resort Collection (Live Aqua, Fiesta Americana, Grand Fiesta Americana, Lat20 and The Explorean) to develop a series of new restaurant menus for its 140 hotel properties. The menus will debut this summer. “Each hotel’s menu is different, based on location,” Chef Muñoz says. “It’s been a huge amount of work, a very ambitious project. I researched dishes for each city so I can give people a taste of what that place is all about. Here in Quintana Roo, people see the beautiful coast and hotels, but they don’t visit the inland communities.” As Chef Muñoz observes, indigenous people and influences are still here, and he wants to introduce travelers to authentic Maya cuisine. His local menus will feature traditional ingredients like white, black and red annatto pastes, black beans, habanero chili peppers and native squash.


Disney photos, logos, properties ©Disney

BET YOU DIDN’T KNOW! Resorts are taking “kid-friendly dining” to a whole new level.

Acclaimed Mexican chef and author Ricardo Muñoz Zurita

Chicken Tortilla Soup at Agave

“People have been eating these dishes for centuries,” he says. With a laugh, he adds, “Visitors don’t know about them, so they’re new without being new!” According to Chef Muñoz, the project came at the right moment in his career, and at the right moment for Mexico, as its cuisine continues to garner international attention. “I have this magnificent opportunity to share the cooking I’ve researched for so many years,” he says. “It’s very personal, because I’ve fallen in love with all these local communities. It’s about so much more than food. It’s a way of life. “I originally thought I’d do this for awhile, do a little research and maybe write a book about it,” he reflects. “Instead, it changed my life. It’s in my soul.”

THE SOUL OF CONTEMPORARY POLYNESIA

Mexico isn’t the only travel destination whose exploding food scene is fueled by both traditional and international influences. In the Hawaiian islands, visitors can explore traditional Hawaiian dishes and the culinary adventure known as Hawaii Regional Cuisine, which draws from throughout the Pacific Rim. “Hawaii is a diverse melting pot,” says Camilla Aluli from United Vacations, who has lived in Hawaii all her life. “And it has a diverse, inclusive food scene. There’s something for everyone.” Those who wa nt to get a feel for

For many families, “kid-friendly” isn’t an afterthought—it’s the only way to travel. And increasing numbers of resorts are making family travel a priority, from unique amenities to memorable family experiences. Beaches Ocho Rios in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, offers the ultimate Sesame Street experience for families and a buffet designed at children's height with a Sesame Street Character Breakfast. It also has a dozen special character events and activities with favorites like Elmo. Beaches excels at catering to children; kids can put on their chef hats and bake like the pros in the Cookie Monster Baking Class. With the help of the kitchen staff, they can mix up their favorite batch of cookies, and a hungry Cookie Monster will stop by to enjoy fresh-from-oven cookies with them. Jewel Runaway Bay Beach & Golf Resort in Runaway Bay, Jamaica, offers an array of kid-friendly dining options, including healthy choices and kidclassics they’re sure to love. The Coral Café at Jewel Runaway Bay Resort even offers a kid-height buffet so they can serve themselves parent-free. Last but not least: Want to split a Denver omelette with Donald Duck? Or a muffin with Mickey? Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in O’ahu, Hawaii, serves a Disney Character Breakfast where kids can meet their favorite Disney icons while they enjoy a tasty beachside breakfast —the perfect photo op. —NICK ARGIRES

HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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Image from Cafe du Monde

ON THE HOME FRONT

Ah, coffee… the lifeblood of the work week. But come Saturday, you may be ready to try something a little different. When your pick-me-up needs a pick-meup, these recipes will definitely enhance your morning brew.

Established in 1862, Café du Monde is one of the most iconic businesses in the Crescent City’s French Market. The cafe is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Need a more adult coffee concoction? Mexican coffee may just be what the doctor ordered. Made with vanilla bean ice cream, tequila, kahlua and rich Guatemalan coffee, this warm, creamy blend is sure to brighten your day. —NICK ARGIRES

Visit us at hereandbeyond.com/ recipes for more travel-inspired drinks and dishes you can make at home.

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Farmers market in the Hawaiian Islands

local ingredients and specialties should start with the islands’ farmers markets. Aluli recommends visiting the Big Island’s new Hāmākua Harvest Farmers Market at Honoka’a, which opened last September, and the KCC Farmers Market on Diamond Head Road (southeast of downtown Honolulu). Another must-visit is Kewalo Harbor waterfront, home to a thriving mobile food community. “It’s relatively inexpensive, and you’ll get to see the commercial and charter boats go out from the harbor.” Aluli says of the waterfront food-truck hotspot. For a locals’ restaurant experience, look no farther than 70-year-old Helena’s near the Honolulu International Airport; it won a Regional Classic Award from the James Beard Foundation in 2000. Then there’s Haili’s Hawaiian Foods and Ono Hawaiian Foods, both near Waikiki. You’ll be able to sample such favorites as kalua pig, lomi salmon and poi, a traditional dish made from fermented taro root that has been baked and pounded to a paste. You also can venture down to the docks for an even more casual experience.

“We have such beautiful fresh fish,” Aluli says. “At Nico’s Pier 38 in Honolulu, you can buy and eat it right there, sitting on a pier bench.” If possible, try to add Mama’s Fish House on Maui’s north shore to your Hawaii travel itinerary. Family-owned since 1973, it’s one of TripAdvisor’s top 10 fine-dining restaurants in the country; Open Table says it’s the second most popular U.S. restaurant, period. To f ully embrace the burgeoning Hawaii Regional Cuisine food scene, however, be sure to spend some time in Waikiki at the International Market Place. Celebrated Hawa i i chef Roy Yamaguchi and award-winning San Francisco chef Michael Mina will be among those opening seven new restaurants this year in the redeveloped market place; at press time, the grand reopening was scheduled for August 25. “Roy Yamaguchi is a key influencer, as are Alan Wong and George Mavrothalassitis,” Aluli notes. “They were pivotal figures in the development of Hawaii Regional Cuisine.” According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority, 12 Hawaii chefs established

Farmers Market, Hawaii Regional Cuisine: Hawaii Tourism Authority

First of all, no cup of coffee would be complete without a tasty pastry companion. Famous for its simple menu, New Orleans-based Café du Monde has the perfect solution with its iconic beignets. These French-style doughnuts are fried to perfection, served warm and generously topped with powdered sugar; the little fried gems are so popular, the cafe has made the mix available for purchase online at cafedumonde. com. Its famous coffee-andchicory blend also is available, so don’t miss the opportunity to pair your beignets with café au lait straight from the Mississippi Delta.


Farmers Market, Hawaii Regional Cuisine: Hawaii Tourism Authority

IN PLAIN SIGHT: ORLANDO AND LAS VEGAS Some destinations are celebrated for their vibrant foodie scenes. Others are loved because they’re great vacation spots for couples, families and friends. Here’s the good news: You can have it all.

Hawaii Regional Cuisine’s ingredients include seafood, beef and tropical produce

Head for Disney Springs For starters, consider the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. Not only has Downtown Disney officially changed its name to Disney Springs, it’s providing some of the hottest international dining experiences in the East. Consider Morimoto, which opened its doors last fall. Here, “Iron Chef” Masaharu Morimoto prepares a wide variety of Pan-Asian dishes, from world-class sushi to savory noodle bowls. Chef Morimoto is considered to be one of the most inventive forces in Asian cuisine, and his creative take on Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Malay dishes ensures guests will experience an unforgettable culinary tour of the Far East. Don’t forget to try the Morimoto Signature Aged Sake, the calamari salad or the Oreo Tempura dessert. Chef Rick Bayless is joining the impressive collection of James Beard Award-winning chefs at Disney Springs as well. He’ll showcase his signature gourmet Mexican cuisine at Frontera Fresco. This will be the place to go for hand-crafted tortas, tacos, guacamole and Mexican braised meat entrees. Disney also is celebrating local food traditions through Homecoming: Florida Kitchen and Southern Shine, which opens this summer. Chef Art Smith, who was born and raised along the Florida-Georgia border, will share the Sunshine State’s bounty through his own farm-totable cuisine.

this culinary movement in 1991. It blends Hawaii’s own diverse ethnic flavors with international cuisine, incorporating the freshest island ingredients—cattle raised on Hawaii Island’s upland pastures, fruits and vegetables from Upcountry Maui, and the region’s world-class seafood.   Yamaguchi was Hawaii’s first recipient of the prestigious James Beard Award. Chef Mavrothalassitis won the award in 2003 for “Best Chef: Pacific” for his Chef Mavro Restaurant. And, in 2006, Alan Wong’s Honolulu was named No. 8 in Gourmet Magazine’s top 50 restaurants in America.

THE DEPTHS OF THE CRESCENT CITY

Like Hawaii, the Louisiana port city of New Orleans boasts a mix of flavors and culinary traditions that can be found nowhere else in the United States—from African and Caribbean to French Creole and Cajun. According to New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau’s Kristian Sonnier, you’ll find old cooking traditions married to local ingredients.

Image from MGM Resorts International

Hawaii Regional Cuisine

Amid the Glittering Lights of Vegas Joining Orlando on any Top 20 list of U.S. vacation destinations is Las Vegas, and a gaze into the American West reveals another exciting foray into food adventures. Some of the best international restaurants in the country are here. Fleur by Hubert Keller, located at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, is hailed as a safari for the senses. Guests can travel the world through a variety of small plates and tapas, and the menu is constantly changing. Mr. Chow at Caesar’s Palace is renowned for its hand-pulled noodles and famous green prawn dishes. China Poblano at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas boasts Chef Jose Andres’ inventive Chinese-Mexican fusion cuisine, and guests will savor all things Mediterranean at Lago by Julian Serrano, an elegant eatery overlooking the legendary Fountains of Bellagio. —HE ATHER STEINBERGER

Plan a food-centric Disney or Las Vegas vacation through your preferred travel professional or online at southwestvacations.com. HERE ANDBEYONDMAG.COM SUMMER 2016

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Photo by Nick Argires

Although sancocho is considered to be one of Dominican Republic’s national dishes, you may be hard pressed to find it at restaurants. That may seem strange, but this is a dish that’s just too delicious to not enjoy on a Sunday, surrounded by family. That's why you’ll find most natives gathered in the kitchen on Sunday, preparing the stew in an all-day affair of vegetable chopping and slow cooking. You may not have family in Dominican Republic, but in the capital city of Santo Domingo, Chef Martin Omar González and his wife will make you feel at home. Chef González and his wife teach interactive culinary classes on how to prepare dishes like sancocho. In Casa Puerto Santo, a home built in 1578 that has since been renovated, Chef González prepares the sancocho using native vegetables like yuca, tapioca, squash, potatoes and a variety of citrus fruits and herbs. The yuca and tapioca are what make sancocho a truly unique dish—the naturally starchy root vegetables thicken the stew, giving it a smooth, velvety texture. The hearty vegetables are balanced with lots of fresh citrus, including juice from oranges and limes. Chef González serves the sancocho with white rice, fresh avocado, and a chili powder for a dash of spice. The dish is served in the open-air courtyard of the historic house—an oasis in the city.

Corn Maque Choux

“The trinity of Creole cooking is bell pepper, onion and celery,” advises Sonnier, a Louisiana native and modern-day Cajun (descended from the Acadians, who were exiled from Nova Scotia in the 18th century). “The most famous dishes are probably shrimp Creole and crawfish étouffeé, which is a great example of a dish that probably began in France. The crawfish here are what defined the dish. “We still eat red beans and rice on Mondays,” he adds with a chuckle. “In the late 1800s, Monday was wash day. If the beans had to cook all day, you could do something else. The tradition stuck.” Due to the city’s large population of Canary Islanders, paella also is a common meal in the Crescent City, as is jambalaya, thanks to those of African heritage. And then there’s the everpresent roux. “So many dishes begin with a roux,” Sonnier notes. “It’s equal parts flour and oil, and then you add the trinity.” L est you wonder if New Orleans is firmly planted in the 18th and 19th centuries, however, Sonnier is quick to point out that the city is currently undergoing a renaissance. Since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, more than 600 new restaurants have opened. And, he says, there’s not a lot of duplication. At the Shaya Restau ra nt, wh ich Esquire called the best new restaurant in America, you can sample Israeli fare. Domenica, Ancora Pizzeria and the new Josephine Estelle specialize in award-winning Italian food. And Le Petit Grocery embraces the city’s roots with innovative seafood dishes and Creole cooking. Indeed, innovation seems to be the name of the game in New Orleans today. “We have lots of different takes on our seafood,” Sonnier says. “In the last two

years, we’ve seen an explosion of offerings, creativity and vision. Chef Donald Link at Pêche Seafood Grill lit a fire with the local fish movement—‘snout-to-tail dining,’ but with seafood. He incorporates parts we used to throw away. “It’s changed the way I dine,” he continues. “I just tried octopus sausage for the first time!” For those who do seek time-honored traditions, the grand dames of New Orleans are still open for business. Antoine’s, the oldest continuously owned family restaurant in the United States, has been serving guests since 1840 in the French Quarter. It’s everything you’d imagine. “The up-and-coming chefs have learned a lot from the venerable Creole restaurants,” Sonnier remarks. “And then they push the envelope further.” So, if you’re in the Big Easy, be adventurous. Sample the true depth and breadth of the city’s culinary experience, and don’t miss mainstays like the Parkway Bakery for a po’ boy, Brennan’s for a Creole-style brunch, and even Café du Monde for its signature beignets and café au lait. “Years ago, chicory was used as an additive when coffee was hard to get,” Sonnier muses. “People developed a taste for it.” And now, like étouffeé and gumbo, it’s simply part of the taste of New Orleans. ■ Plan your food-centric vacation through your preferred travel professional or online at unitedvacations.com. And to learn more about these flavorful destinations and recipes you can try at home, visit hereandbeyondmag.com/culinarytravel.

—NICK ARGIRES

THE

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TIPSTER

■ Motion sickness? Ask for a drink that is half ginger ale and half club soda.

■ If you don’t speak the local language of your next destination, try learning these three key phrases: please, thank you and I’m sorry.

Corn Maque Choux Image from New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau

DOMINICAN EATS


Corn Maque Choux Image from New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau

E V E RY K E Y U N LO C K S a SU I T E ™

Call your travel agent to book with one of these preferred brands: Funjet Vacations, United Vacations, or Southwest Vacations

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VIP PASS JAMAICA

Get real insider status through Jamaica’s Meet The People program.

Through Jamaica’s innovative Meet The People program, visitors are able to connect with Jamaica’s most famous asset—its welcoming and hospitable people. A visit to this happening island simply wouldn’t be complete without interacting with the locals. Meet up with a Jamaican ambassador, and don’t worry, it won’t get political. That is, unless you want it to. Jamaica’s Meet The People program raises the bar when it comes to authentic and unique travel experiences. At no cost, the Jamaican Tourism Board will match you with an ambassador, a Jamaican who shares your interests. These carefully considered pairings are like good matches for first dates, and you’ll discover unlimited options for interesting things to do with your new friend or family. Spend a day or two with a musician, doctor, chef, dancer or artist. Shop the local spots. Visit a school. After a tennis match, cool off with a beer and the famous Jamaican “Doctor’s Breeze.” Or, settle down and enjoy great conversation over a cup of Jamaica’s well-known Blue Mountain coffee. There are no age limits either, so your children can meet Jamaican children, perhaps embarking on a lasting friendship. Whether it’s through a hobby, recreational activity or profession, there is a Meet the People Ambassador ready to share and connect with you, the island way. Such varied and specialized opportunities can only happen through immersion. Meet The People allows for this, creating lifelong bonds and one-of-a-kind experiences. As it turns out, what brings you back to Jamaica may not be the thrills, the glorious beaches and the relaxed vibe. It may be your real connection to the island nation through new friendships and perspectives. —LISABETH DAYAN

For more information about the program go to visitjamaica.com

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Image from Jamaica Tourist Board

Recording artist and producer Peter Lloyd participates in Jamaica’s Meet the People program

C O N T I N U E D F R O M PA G E 4 7

that also are appropriate to your skill level. One bucket-list adventure in Ocho Rios is the Blue Hole. This is unbeatable, once-in-a-lifetime stuff. Swing off a rope, then hike in the rainforest to rejoin the river. Swim in pools laced with rushing water, and relax in bubble pools dispersed between perfectly placed boulders. And, pick some guavas right from the tree for a snack. If you want to keep testing your wild side, ride a zip line or bobsled down a mountainside at After Glow at Mystic Mountain. On Friday and Saturday nights, torches will light the way; and if it’s a full moon, you’ll careen over and through the jungle to the beats of live reggae music. You don’t have to go out every day, thanks to the thoughtful amenities at area resorts. If you’re staying at Beaches Ocho Rios, for example, you can relax in 22 acres of tropical gardens, lounge on a private beach and play a few holes of golf. For a little added excitement, the resort provides water sports and a scuba shop, as well as a fully equipped waterpark. “Every person who visits cannot help but be touched by the warmth and pride of this little rock that is Jamaica. For such a small size, it’s contribution to the world is grand,” Groves says. Wherever you go in this unique island nation, you’ll find opportunities to connect with the land and sea through outdoor adventure, and with the island’s rich history and culture through music, food and authentic hospitality. “Jamaica is just one of those places that instantly makes me feel like I’m on vacation,” North reflects. “Actually, as soon as the plane lands, practically on the water, I feel like I am home again.” Groves agrees, “It’s a very special place that easily gets into your heart and mind.” For most of us, home is where the heart is. And you just might find a real second home out there waiting for you—off the charts, in Jamaica. For more insider information about Jamaica, visit hereandbeyondmag.com. Plan your Jamaica vacation through your preferred travel professional or online at funjet.com

Beaches Ocho Rios


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Funjet Vacations www.funjet.com ■ Funjet Vacations is the flagship brand of The Mark Travel Corporation, headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. With more than 41 years in business and hundreds of destinations to choose from, Funjet specializes in providing travelers with vacation packages that meet their needs, delivered with unparalleled customer care and at an exceptional value.

Southwest Vacations www.southwestvacations.com ■ Southwest Vacations offers vacation packages to more than 100 destinations, with flight

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FEEL OUR JAMAICAN RHYTHM...

Discover the true magic of Meliá at the new all-inclusive Meliá Braco Village Resort. Located 45 minutes from Sangster International Airport, the resort consists of rooms and suites within colonial-style buildings facing one of the most stunning beaches in the Caribbean, and features a variety of restaurants, bars, pools, entertainment and activities, and a Spa for your clients to enjoy. • Beautiful oceanfront resort with 226 rooms and suites • Pristine white sand beach • Six restaurants offer signature dining experiences • Sparkling freshwater swimming pools

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for Hawaii vacations with an outstanding selection of hotels, condos, rental cars, tours and flights on every airline flying to the Hawaiian Islands. Coming soon, Blue Sky Tours will also offer vacations to the French Polynesian islands of Tahiti and Fiji. VAC AT I O N COAC H

Finest Club at Finest Playa Mujeres www.finestresorts.com ■ Express check-in, late check-out, welcoming gifts, fresh flowers and private lounge areas are on an ever-growing list of amenities —large and small—that ensures each family member makes the most of every moment of their stay. Club suites feature private furnished patios or balconies, most with spectacular ocean views. All-inclusive Hard Rock Hotels www.hrhallinclusive.com ■ It’s a rocking concert and a backstage pass after the show. It’s hitting the links and the shops. It’s catching some ocean waves, and then wading to the swim-up bar. All-inclusive means everything from the in-room top-shelf drinks to the nightly entertainment and kids clubs are included in your stay. Sandals Resorts www.sandals.com ■ All-inclusive luxury vacations with gorgeous white sand beaches, savory dining experiences, opulent accommodations, unlimited refreshing beverages, exciting water sports and more. Sandals Resorts are specifically designed for romance; choose to do as much, or as little, as you want. W H O.W H AT.W H E R E

MUSIC FESTIVALS Bravo! Vail Music Festival www.bravovail.org Summerfest www.summerfest.com Lollapalooza www.lollapalooza.com Outside Lands Music & Arts Festival www.sfoutsidelands.com Music City Food & Wine Festival www.musiccityfoodandwinefestival.com BEST NEW RESORTS Excellence El Carmen Punta Cana, Dominican Republic www.excellenceresorts.com ■ Opening in September 2016, romance revolves around 20 pools, a world-class spa, lush landscaping and contemporary tropical architecture. Every room is an amenity-filled suite with creature comforts to make your home away from home a vacation beyond compare. Four Seasons Oahu at Ko’Olina Ko’Olina, Oahu, Hawaii www.fourseasons.com/oahu ■ Located 24 miles from Honolulu, the

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new Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko’Olina features open-air public spaces that mirror the easy elegance of a Four Seasons resort lifestyle. Explore world-class restaurants and sunset lounges, lively pools and lagoons in this restorative and peaceful destination. Holiday Inn Resort Orlando Suites— Waterpark Orlando, Florida www.hisuitesorlando.com ■ Wild, wacky, and family-focused destination hotel in Orlando dedicated to imagination, play and exploration! Experience our high-energy, kid-friendly Orlando hotel, where kids and parents alike make messy memories under sunny Florida skies. Hyatt Ziva Cancún Cancún, Mexico www.cancun.ziva.hyatt.com ■ Hyatt Ziva Cancún offers incredible entertainment and family activities, from theater shows to water sports to tequila tastings and a microbrewery. Designed with inspiring architecture, this spectacular resort offers a village-like atmosphere that connects you to the natural beauty and serenity of Mexico’s coast. Meliá Braco Village Jamaica Runaway Bay, Jamaica www.melia.com ■ Experience the perfect blend of a private colonial villa and the Caribbean sea breeze at the Meliá Braco Village, located 45 minutes from Montego Bay airport. Beachside parties, Caribbean cocktails and local cuisine, such as the famous jerk chicken, are just some of the things you can enjoy when you stay here. The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Waikiki Beach Waikiki, Oahu, Hawaii www.ritzcarlton.com/waikiki ■ The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Waikiki Beach represents a new horizon of luxury in Hawaii. Welcoming guests in summer 2016, the resort features 307 stylishly-appointed residences with unparalleled views of the Pacific Ocean. Discover a vast array of distinctive experiences and amenities, along with legendary Ritz-Carlton service, whether you prefer a private cabana at the infinity pool or a world-class spa treatment. Riu Republica Punta Cana, Dominican Republic www.riu.com ■ Opening June 4, 2016, this adults-only resort is where you can enjoy a perfect holiday by the Dominican Republic’s most famous beach. Its facilities include everything you might need to spend wonderful days relaxing, doing sports or taking part in different activities. Loews Sapphire Falls Resort at Universal Orlando Orlando, Florida www.universalorlando.com /sapphirefalls

■ Be transported to paradise where every comfort has been built into this brand new hotel. Featuring a 16,000-square-foot resort-style pool, surrounded by cascading waterfalls, plentiful dining options and exclusive theme park benefits. Loews Sapphire Falls Resort offers an island escape in the heart of an unforgettable adventure. DISNEY AND STAR WARS Disneyland Resort Anaheim, California https://disneyland.disney.go.com Walt Disney World Orlando, Florida https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/ ■ From your favorite Disney Characters to exciting adventures, it’s bound to be a vacation to remember at any Disney Park! Whether you visit Disneyland or Walt Disney World, you can explore the Force, meet fairytale princesses, and discover awe-inspiring and unforgettable lands from favorite Disney and Pixar stories. HAWAII Haleakala National Park, Maui www.gohawaii.com/en/maui Hamakua Harvest Farmers Market at Honoka’a www.hamakuaharvest.org Ho’olaulea www.alohafestivals.com KCC Farmers Market www.hfbf.org Maui County Fair www.mauifair.com May Day Festival www.hawaiimaydayfestival.com Mokawao Rodeo www.hawaiirodeonews.net Ukelele and Slack Key Guitar Festival www.ukulelefestivalhawaii.org/en ROMANCE Beloved Playa Mujeres by Excellence Group Playa Mujeres, Mexico www.belovedhotels.com ■ All-inclusive luxury is in the romantic restaurants, where dining means gourmet dishes at every meal, premium drinks and no reservations. It’s in the all-suite accommodations filled with five-star amenities and 24-hour room service. And it’s in the measure of the resort facilities with pools, a world-class spa, and entertainment. Hideaway at Royalton Riviera Cancún Riveria Cancún, Mexico www.royaltonresorts.com ■ It’s the perfect place to open yourself up to an elegant adults-only vacation experience. Savor gourmet cuisine, artfully prepared cocktails and enjoy the impossibly blue ocean. The All-In Luxury concept is devoted to providing guests with a unique vacation experience with a luxury product that features top quality service, and great attention to detail.


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Travel Listings

The Venetian Las Vegas Las Vegas, Nevada www.venetian.com ■ Guests can walk along Venice’s Grand Canal or catch a ride across the Rialto Bridge without ever having to leave the hotel. Enjoy your very own European adventure during stays at this stunning hotel.

FILMS ON LOCATION Baja California, California www.discoverbajacalifornia.com Dominican Republic www.dominicanrepublic.com Jamaica www.visitjamaica.com Kauai, Hawaii www.gohawaii.com/en/kauai Oahu, Hawaii www.gohawaii.com/en/oahu

THE EXPLOREAN COZUMEL

SPOTLIGHT

Lat20 by Live Aqua Playa del Carmen, Mexico www.liveaqua.com ■ At Lat20, experience an unforgettable adults-only, all-inclusive vacation. You’ll find the same guarantee of service, quality, and exquisite cuisine found at the Live Aqua hotels throughout Mexico, but in a more intimate boutique hotel setting. The Explorean Cozumel Cozumel, Mexico www.explorean.com ■ Pleasure, relaxation and adventure living all reside in this majestic resort, an all-inclusive hotel that enchants with its beauty and allows for a romantic getaway or a thrilling adventure. Either leads way to exploring a myriad of emotions and creating amazing memories. INSIDER: JAMAICA

Sandals Ochi Beach Resort Ocho Rios, Jamaica www.sandals.com ■ For more information about this resort, see the Travel Listings for Vacation Coach. D E S T I N AT I O N W E D D I N G S

Finest Playa Mujeres Playa Mujeres, Mexico www.finestresorts.com F I E L D G U I D E : CO S TA R I C A

Between the jungle and the beach on the island’s southwestern edge, The Explorean Cozumel is just a few miles from the town of San Miguel. The hotel is adjacent to the 5-star Fiesta Americana resort, but has an entirely different vibe. Several airlines operate from US gateways to Cozumel, or guests may connect via Cancun.

Call your travel agent to book with one of these preferred brands: Funjet Vacations, United Vacations, or Southwest Vacations

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Andaz Peninsula Papagayo-A Hyatt Hotel www.papagayo.andaz.hyatt.com Barcelo Langosta Beach www.barcelo.com Central American Tours (CATOURS) www.centralamericantours.net Occidental Grand Papagayo www.occidentalhotels.com Riu Palace Costa Rica www.riu.com Tabacón Thermal Resort & Spa www.tabacon.com The Westin Golf Resort & Spa, Playa Conchal An All-Inclusive Resort www.westinplayaconchal.com J A M A I C A T O DAY: O N I T S O W N PAT H

Beaches Ocho Rios Ocho Rios, Jamaica www.beaches.com ■ For more information about this resort, see the Travel Listings for Where To Stay. Chukka Tours Jamaica www.chukka.com


Travel Listings

Jamaica Tourism Board www.visitjamaica.com Jamaica Tours Limited www.jamaicatoursltd.com Sandals Royal Caribbean ■ For more information about this resort, see the Travel Listings for Where To Stay. Sandals Negril www.sandals.com ■ For more information about this resort, see the Travel Listings for Vacation Coaches. WHERE TO STAY Beaches Ocho Rios: A Spa, Golf & Waterpark Resort www.beaches.com ■ There’s something for everyone in the family at this all-inclusive resort. With its exhilarating waterpark with daredevil waterslides to unlimited rounds of golf, green fees, and roundtrip transfers, there’s fun for the whole family. Or, if you just want to relax, there are plenty of ways you can do that too. Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa www.palladiumhotelgroup.com ■ Its modern design and luxurious facilities in harmony with nature create a unique and incomparable atmosphere. An idyllic enclave of beautiful beaches and turquoise waters, surrounded by lush vegetation and a mountainous landscape, help vacationers to have an unforgettable experience. Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall and Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall www.rosehall.ziva.hyatt.com www.rosehall.zilara.hyatt.com ■ These all-inclusive resorts will wow you with contemporary luxury and top-notch hospitality, all just minutes from the airport and three world-class golf courses. Guests of the adults-only Zilara will enjoy the beachfront Zen Spa and three exclusive dining options, while Ziva offers eight more restaurants and plenty of family activities. Iberostar Rose Hall Suites www.iberostar.com ■ Couples and families will have it all at this upscale, all-inclusive resort. From experiencing the thrilling waterpark featuring a lazy river, enjoying unlimited a la carte dining, watching professional shows and eating mouth-watering cuisine. You won’t want to miss out because you’ll find it all here. Meliá Braco Village www.melia.com ■ For more information about this resort, see the Travel Listings for Best New Resorts.

Moon Palace Jamaica Grande www.palaceresorts.com ■ The 5-star Moon Palace Jamaica Grande features all the family amenities, friendly staff and comfortable accommodations Palace Resorts are known for. This all-inclusive paradise has four pools, five restaurants and endless entertainment at The Playroom kids club, Wired teen lounge, and Noir nightclub.

Riu Negril www.riu.com ■ This amazing complex offers you everything you need for a relaxing break. It has three outdoor swimming pools, a Jacuzzi, a sauna, a gym, sun terrace, and then there is the spa with various treatments. Everything is ready to let you relax and enjoy the best tropical ambiance.

50% OFF

UP TO

AT HYATT ZIVA CANCUN

It begins with an idyllic destination, a Mayan-inspired oasis surrounded on three sides by Caribbean waters. Situated on Cancun’s most desirable point, Hyatt Ziva Cancun provides the perfect backdrop for couples, families and groups to celebrate special occasions. The true resort experience. All accommodations feature private balconies Floating, spacious swim-up suites Microbrewery with home-made artisan beer and on-site brewmaster Beachfront dining at Habaneros — a ceviche lover’s paradise

Call your travel agent to book with one of these preferred brands: Funjet Vacations, United Vacations, or Southwest Vacations CANCUN • LOS CABOS • MONTEGO BAY • PUERTO VALLARTA

Savings up to 50% off the published rate. Applies to new bookings only. Booking window now for travel through August 16, 2017. Blackout dates may apply. Offer not valid for meetings and conventions and may not be combined with other promotional offers. Hyatt Ziva Cancun reserves the right to alter or withdraw this offer at any time. Additional restrictions may apply. Not responsible for errors or omissions. The Hyatt Zilara™ and Hyatt Ziva™ trademarks and related marks are trademarks of Hyatt International Corporation. ©2016 Hyatt International Corporation. ©2016 Playa Resorts Management is the exclusive operator of Hyatt Zilara™ and Hyatt Ziva™. All rights reserved. PLA07140316

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resorts

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Travel Listings Riu Palace Jamaica www.riu.com ■ The newly renovated adults-only hotel is the ideal place to enjoy a vacation as a couple or with friends and features all-inclusive service with free Wi-Fi, 24-hour room service, infinity pools and a host of sports and activities to make vacations unforgettable. Royalton Blue Waters www.royaltonresorts.com ■ Enjoy a luxurious escape, surrounded by a pristine beach and a soothing tropical breeze. This family-friendly vacation experience offers an exquisite product featuring incredible attention to detail from the unlimited a la carte dining to All-in Connectivity with free calls to North America.

*Southwest Airlines bags fly free: First and second checked bags. Weight and size limits apply. A golf bag, pair of skis or snowboard can be substituted for one checked bag. *Funjet Vacations Price Match Plus: For price matches to be honored, all components of the vacation must be identical including air class of service, hotel, hotel room category, meal plan, airport/hotel transfers, arrival date, length of stay and add-on features. Minimum 3-night hotel stay required. Travel protection is considered separate from price matches due to variances in plan benefits. Valid for new, same-day booking only. Valid against US-based competitors’ final price including promo codes when all vacation components match. Matches against membership clubs and other select vacation companies/reservations are subject to review and may not be matched. Some restrictions apply. *United Vacations $200 down, pay later: The actual deposit amount required varies based on the destination and hotel accommodations selected. Destinations outside of North America require a $300 per person deposit. Some special holiday/convention periods (or other exceptions) may apply where full payment is required at time of booking. Vacation cancellations/revisions are subject to penalties outlined in the United Vacations terms and conditions. All payments must be completed no less than 45 days before departure.

Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort & Private Island www.sandals.com ■ A kaleidoscope of cultures from Britain to Bali awaits you at Sandals Royal Caribbean. The resort’s decidedly British heritage begins with the Majestic Georgian-style Great House, surrounded by manicured gardens and roaming peacocks - all complemented with traditions like afternoon tea and croquet. S AVO R T H E F L AVO R S

Beaches Ocho Rios Ocho Rios, Jamaica www.beaches.com Bellagio Resort and Casino Las Vegas, Nevada www.bellagio.com Caesar’s Palace Las Vegas, Nevada www.caesars.com Aulani, A Disney Resort and Spa Oahu, Hawaii www.disneyaulani.com Disney Springs Orlando, Florida www.disneysprings.com Hawaii Tourism www.gohawaii.com Jewel Runaway Bay Beach & Golf Resort Runaway Bay, Jamaica www.jewelresorts.com/resorts/runawaybay Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino Las Vegas, Nevada www.mandalaybay.com New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau New Orleans, Louisiana www.neworleanscvb.com Royalton Riveria Cancún Riviera Cancún, Mexico www.royaltonresorts.com The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas, Nevada www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com

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JAMAICA

T H E W O R L D ’ S O N LY F I V E - S T A R L U X U R Y I N C L U D E D ® VA C A T I O N

SANDALS NEGRIL

SANDALS OCHI BEACH RESORT

European panache with an all-beachfront tropical resort.

Chill on the longest, best stretch of Jamaica’s Seven Mile Beach.

Enjoy a chic beach club, a butler village and unlimited golf*.

FE

ED

SANDALS® WHITEHOUSE

RRY INCLU

D

SANDALS ROYAL PLANTATION

SANDALS MONTEGO BAY

SANDALS ROYAL CARIBBEAN

Sandals only all-butler, all-suite, all-oceanfront resort.

The original Sandals is the island’s most upbeat hideaway.

This majestic resort in Montego Bay has its own offshore private island adventure.

S I X S P E C TA C U L A R S A N D A L S R E S O R T S I N J A M A I C A

J

amaica stirs the soul of romantics with the island’s magnificent beauty and exhilarates all who seek out its festive spirit. The same can be said for Sandals Resorts, where you will find more quality inclusions at six of the best resorts in Jamaica—each with its own unique ambience. More great beaches and pools. More unlimited land and water sports. More non-stop happy hours with endless pours of premium spirits and Gourmet Discovery Dining at up to 16 restaurants per resort. More ways to party to the sounds of reggae and more ways to fall in love all over again at the most romantic resorts in the Caribbean. It’s all included, all unlimited, all the time. Yeh, mon!

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®

QUALITY INCLUSIONS THAN ANY OTHER RESORTS ON THE PLANET

D I S C O V E R O T H E R L U X U R Y I N C L U D E D® S A N D A L S R E S O R T S I N ANTIGUA • SAINT LUCIA • BAHAMAS • GRENADA • BARBADOS *Caddies are mandatory, but not included. Sandals® is a registered trademark. Unique Vacations, Inc. is an affiliate of Unique Travel Corp., the worldwide representative of Sandals Resorts.

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