Caribbean & Bermuda

Caribbean & Bermuda

Decor in the accommodations plays off the surroundings. (Michelle Arean)

RIU Republica, Punta Cana

It’s only been about a month since its opening date and already the RIU Republica is booked at about 90 percent occupancy. In fact, it’s been at about 90 percent since the first week.

Palace Live!

If your clients have ever attended one of Palace Resorts’ star-studded concerts, then you already know how these events can take a vacation from great to over the top.

The BVI’s New Program for Travel Agents

Is the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board (BVITB) taking over the internet? You decide.

A Pompeii Adventure in the Caribbean

Yes, we know the ancient Roman city of Pompeii with its numerous temples and weathered sites is quite a ways away from the glittering Caribbean; however, Montserrat, the Caribbean’s modern-day Pompeii offers just as impressive volcano-shaped landscapes, and your clients can see it all from the seat of a helicopter on the Four Seasons Resort Nevis and Olveston House of Montserrat’s new Peaks of Perfection package.

Curtain Bluff Introduces Wellness Concierge Team

In order to cater to the demand for onsite fitness focused programming, Curtain Bluff, a 72-guestroom all-inclusive, beachfront resort in Antigua, recently introduced a Wellness Concierge Team, created to help guests achieve their fitness goals.

Escape to the Bahamas

If your clients are looking for a seamless (and quick) tropical getaway, recommend One&Only Ocean Club’s Summer Friday Escape package in the Bahamas.

Summer Camp for Grown-Ups

Summer camp isn't just for kids anymore, at least not in St. Kitts. This summer your clients can participate in the fun at St. Kitts Marriott Resort & The Royal Beach Casino.

French Coco Opens in Martinique

This month, the all-suite French Coco hotel opened in Tartane, Martinique on the northeast coast of the island, marking the first Small Luxury Hotels of the World in Martinique.

Eye on the World: RIU Republica, Punta Cana

Recommend's Associate Editor spent a few days taking in the splendor that surrounds RIU Republica in the Dominican Republic—a property that’s been open only for a little over a month. 

Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority Appoints New Director of Tourism

Earlier this month, the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority announced that Kim Jack Riley has been named director of tourism, USA.

Get in the Holiday Spirit with Disney Cruise Line’s Festive Journeys

Disney Cruise Lines has announced two new seasonal holiday offers for fall and winter 2016.

Delta Goes to Cuba

Delta Air Lines has just announced that it is one of several U.S. airlines to have been awarded flights to Havana by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT).

Why People Are Excited About CTO’s SOTIC 2016

"Arguably, SOTIC is the most significant event the Caribbean Tourism Organization puts on," said CTO chairman Richard Sealy at a July 6 press conference, and I would argue that this goes double for the 2016 edition, which will take place in Barbados, Sept. 14-16.
Pathway to the beach at Bougainvillea Beach Resort. (Paloma Villaverde de Rico)

Onsite Review: Barbados

Sea turtles, blooming gardens & a dash of English china... It’s the scent that lures you in, and then it’s the lively ambiance and tasty fish that keep you hanging out for hours. For clients who want to immerse themselves in the local culture and experience a colorful hangout, with authentic Barbadian music and food, Oistins Fish Fry is a top experience in Barbados.
Whale-watching in the Bay of Samana in the Dominican Republic.

Only on These Islands, 5 Unforgettable Experiences

“The average couple staying for one week at a Sandals Resort will take three Island Routes tours.” That insider’s comment at JAPEX is Exhibit A for making the case that Caribbean beach holidays have changed. Sure, even the most active and inquisitive travelers still lounge around the pool, but they also want to do things, see things. Following are five experiential activities that are hot—and are best booked in advance.

Get Ready for Some Sliming…the Nickelodeon Resort Punta Cana is Open

Water slides, a gorgeous beach, expertly crafted cuisine, hanging with the locals—we're thinking SpongeBob SquarePants, not Punta Cana locals—and a Pineapple Villa! Nickelodeon Resort Punta Cana has it goin' on.

Paradise Beach Nevis’ Sweet Summer Special

Paradise Beach Nevis, a beachfront resort featuring seven individually decorated villas, is celebrating mango season—a beloved seasonal fruit—with the new Summer Sunsation package.

Solo Travel to Cuba

Cuba Travel Network’s new Havana for the Solo Traveler Trip is now available on the company’s website at cuba-travel.com.

Condado Plaza Hilton Launches Anniversary Package for Same-Sex Couples

The Condado Plaza Hilton in Puerto Rico has partnered with Andrew Collins, author of About.com’s gay travel site, gaytravel.about.com, to create the Coloring San Juan with Love wedding anniversary package for same-sex couples.

25 Top Things to Do in Barbados

Here are the 25 top things to do in Barbados according to the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc.

Eye on the World: Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Punta Cana

Have you seen SpongeBob SquarePants or Patrick? I did, just a couple of weeks ago...hanging out at the brand-new Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Punta Cana Resort in the Dominican Republic.

Martinique Named as Safest Caribbean Destination

Martinique has once again been named as the "Safest Destination in the Caribbean," according to the 2016 Caribbean Tourism Quality Index, which is produced by Resonance Consultancy.

Virtuoso Reveals Top Resorts & Destinations for Honeymoons in 2016

A total of 279 Virtuoso honeymoon specialists from across the U.S. and Canada were surveyed in January 2016 to reveal what today’s upscale honeymooners seek for their romantic getaway.

Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa Launches Pearl Wedding Package

Saint Lucia’s Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa has combined couples’ most requested destination wedding elements from welcome beach parties and rehearsal dinners to private island tours into the ideal package for couple’s with a larger guest list.

Experience “Honeymoon Magic” at the Grand Case Beach Club

Couples can spend a romantic holiday on the quaint Caribbean island of St. Martin, where the Grand Case Beach Club is offering its popular Honeymoon Magic package through Oct. 31, 2016.

Viking Ocean Cruises Announces First-Ever World Cruise

Viking Ocean Cruises has announced that its fourth ship, Viking Sun, will spend her maiden season sailing the company’s first-ever World Cruise departing December 2017.

Island Routes Adds New Destination

Island Routes celebrated its seventh anniversary on June 1, and with that came the announcement of a new destination (its 12th one, in fact)—Mexico.
The W Retreat & Spa - Vieques Island in Puerto Rico offers an array of options for destination wedding celebrations.

New Ways to Get Married

What next, zipline weddings? Why, yes, because today many wedding couples want a ceremony that’s unique. Sure, many still tie the knot on a resort beach, but here’s what to suggest for clients who, much like my wife and me when we got hitched, want something different.
Accommodations are made for romance at Sandals Negril in Jamaica.

4 Very Different Honeymoons

Is it better to celebrate a honeymoon by decompressing on the beach or by enjoying an island’s best restaurants (or golf, or...)? That’s right: There is no right answer.
A stylish Zen Oasis retreat at Club Med Punta Cana.

Onsite Review: CHIC Punta Cana & Club Med Zen Oasis

How can two adults-only, all-inclusive honeymoon havens in the same corner of the same Caribbean island be so successful and yet so different? Guests I met at Royalton Resorts’ CHIC Punta Cana in late April would have felt out of place at Club Med Punta Cana’s Zen Oasis, and vice versa

Moon Palace Jamaica Grande Delivers on Destination Weddings

Last month I got a peek at Moon Palace Jamaica Grande’s destination wedding venues, including the two gazebos, each on either side of the resort and ideal for weddings under 100 guests; the 200-guest Terrace; the 400-guest ballroom, and the setting most couples choose, beachside.
Ask Me-sponsored social media post.

Romance Travel Forum: Where Education Prospers

As a romance travel seller, you know all the facts on destination weddings: It’s one of the fastest growing niche markets in the vacation experience; Mexico and the Caribbean are the most popular international destinations for destination weddings; a 4-day destination wedding experience can be more budget-friendly than a 4-hour ceremony back home; many destination weddings take place at all-inclusives; and a destination wedding affords ample time for couples to spend true quality time with their loved ones.

Expert-Led Active Retreats

Some of your clients will want to spend the long summer days lounging by the pool sipping hand-crafted cocktails, and for them we suggest these waterfront properties featured in our May issue. But, for those looking for a more active, wellness-oriented getaway, we suggest the following expert-led wellness retreats.

Breathless Unveils Birthday Bash Package

In time for summer getaways, Breathless Resorts & Spas have announced its new Breathless Birthday Bash Package, available at destinations in Mexico and the Caribbean.

Puerto Rico’s Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Launches All-Inclusive Program

The Wyndham Grand Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa is now offering guests the option to choose between an all-inclusive package or nightly rates when staying at the four-star property on Puerto Rico’s northeast coast.

Expo de Turismo International (ETI), Part 2: It Wasn’t Just about Puerto Rico

"The travel industry will double in the next decade, making it the second largest industry in the world, exceeded only by agriculture," said Bill Todd, author of “Increase Sales Now,” to 400 travel agents at ETI, the Puerto Rico Tourism Company's annual conference. "You couldn't have picked a better career path."

Expo de Turismo International (ETI), Part 1: What’s New In Puerto Rico

Two things astonished Recommend's Caribbean editor Ed Wetschler at Puerto Rico's second annual ETI, or Expo de Turismo International.

Delta Vacations Expands Offerings for the Dominican Republic

Due to double-digit growth in 2015, Delta Vacations is offering expanded offerings in the Dominican Republic, including new hotels and flights for 2016.

Report from JAPEX, Part 2: Hotel News

On May 3, Recommend's Caribbean Editor Ed Wetschler quoted an Island Routes official who told him that the new highway connecting Montego Bay to Kingston would soon make it possible to expand the company's excursions to the capital. Three days later, Island Routes publicly announced a new Bob Marley and Kingston Highlights tour. We're on a roll, so let's look at some Jamaican hotel news.

Curaçao—Live and Let Live

Yes, there are 65 dive sites, 35 beaches, a highly acclaimed Jazz Festival, varied cultures—from Dutch to Spanish—unique architecture, and a well-known Ostrich Farm, but it's the people of tiny Curaçao, said Eugene Rhuggenaath, Curaçao's Minister of Economic Development and Tourism, over lunch a few weeks ago, that make this Southern Caribbean island stand above the rest.

Aruban and Cuban Governments Sign Milestone Agreement

Last week in Havana, Cuba, the governments of Aruba and Cuba signed a cooperative agreement in an effort to boost both countries’ tourism sectors.

Cuba by Cruise

With Cuba's doors open to U.S. travelers, there are more opportunities than ever for you and your clients to visit the trending island nation.

Eye on the World: Barbados

Have you ever visited a garden inside a cave? What about a rum factory on an old plantation? Have you swam with sea turtles or eaten foie gras and duck ravioli in a cliffside restaurant? No? Well, that just means you haven't been to Barbados.

The Reality of Virtual Travel

Virtual reality technology is popping up across all sectors of the travel industry, bringing your clients closer to far-flung destinations and you closer to closing that deal.

Report from JAPEX, Part 1: The Big Picture—Highways, Culture, and Even Cuba

How might the land of alright get alrighter? At the 26th annual JAPEX—Jamaican Product Exchange—Jamaican tourism leaders are offering answers.
The resort’s Awe-Spa offers a 1-hour Water Journey.

Onsite Review: Moon Palace Jamaica Grande

Two questions guided my recent stay at Palace Resorts’ first foothold in Jamaica, the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande: 1. How was Mexican-owned Palace Resorts adapting to the land of alright? 2. How could it stand out on an island that already has dozens of all-inclusive brands?
The Sunscape Puerto Vallarta opened in December.

Onsite Review: Puerto Vallarta’s Hotel Scene

This Mexican destination on the Pacific side isn’t just overflowing with vibrantly colorful bougainvillea, it’s also bursting at the seams with new hotel openings and revamps, ranging from all-inclusives to ultra-luxe and eco options. During my visit to the destination for Gala Vallarta-Nayarit, I learned that there are at least 11 properties in the area that either recently opened or underwent a revamping, giving you plenty of new booking options.
Bird’s-eye view of the Iberostar Playa Mita.

Onsite Review: Iberostar Playa Mita

It’s a gorgeous day in Riviera Nayarit. The sun isn’t being shy about how luminous it can get, and nature in general—from the beach to the lush mountains—is having one of its finest days. I’m at the Iberostar Playa Mita property in Riviera Nayarit, and although I’ve been to this area of Mexico a few times, I’m always blown away by how utterly gorgeous it is—nature really outdoes itself here. That striking scenery takes center stage at the 452-room Iberostar Playa Mita, which pays homage to the natural surroundings, creating a lovely, laid-back ambiance throughout the property.
Bali beds on the Heaven side offer stunning views of the surroundings.

Onsite Review: Rock Royalty Only

Experience a taste of the rock star lifestyle at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, no Grammy necessary.

ID Travel Unveils Cancellation Waiver Promotion

Luxury tour operator ID Travel Group has launched a complimentary cancellation waiver at select properties.

Just How Hot Is Dominican Tourism? – Part 2

Recommend’s Caribbean editor Ed Wetschler gives a second update from DATE, the Dominican Annual Tourism Exchange.

Just How Hot Is Dominican Tourism? – Part 1

Here's the buzz from DATE, the Dominican Annual Tourism Exchange, as reported by Recommend's Caribbean editor Ed Wetschler.
Recommend