Wednesday, November 22, 2017

From Naples to Jensen Beach and a Surprise Visit With Friends

We were back in Naples for a week after we returned from Punta Cana and did not do much as we were both still recovering from our colds. We did do a bit of exploring, looking at possible places to settle down. We did not find anything that really appealed to us so we will be checking out the East coast in the next few weeks.
One of the swans at Lake San Marino. The park was almost back to normal after Irma. They removed the couple of totaled trailers, repaired the fence and remove the downed branches and stumps.
We did stop at Big Cypress National Preserve on our trip to Miami. We were shocked at how much water is still on the ground from Irma. Many of the back roads and the Shark Valley area in the Everglades are still closed because they are under water. Here is an anhinga drying its wings.
We have driven across this road several times in Opus but this was the first time we have stopped at the visitors center to collect a park service stamp and add Big Cypress to our visited list. We did see one gator. 
Oh no, we got up the day after we returned from Punta Cana and found the carpet in the bedroom was wet. I found the leak under the sink, but I don't do plumbing, so we called Daniel at Land and Sea Cooling and he came out the first thing Monday morning and replaced the broken T. We can't say enough about Daniel. If you are in the Naples area and need a mobile RV service, he is very good.
We arrived in Jensen Beach on Saturday afternoon and got a message that John and Sharon were in the area so we got together for an extended happy hour.
As we always say, making and seeing friends on the road is the best thing about our full timing lifestyle. We got caught up with all our travels and are looking forward to seeing them at Betty's in the spring.
On Sunday we went to the Jensen Beach Pineapple Festival. It was a small event with the usual music, food and vendors.
We did find a Christmas gift and found a couple local restaurants that are within walking distance of the park. We are here for a month and plan to check out the area as a possible place to settle some day. Looking at prices, this area is less expensive than the West coast.

We are only a few miles north of Jupiter so we are going to have Thanksgiving with our friend Mary Lou. Hope you all have a great turkey day and are with friends and/or family.  

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Secrets Royal Beach - Punta Cana

We love going to Secrets Resorts as part of our Unlimited Vacation Club. It is great to be able to kick back and be waited on by the staff. Check out our previous post about the service we received on our anniversary. Going to the pool and soaking up the sun is our number one priority and our toughest decision is, where will we dine tonight? This year we decided to return to Secrets Royal Beach in Punta Cana where we joined the club five years ago. 
This was our view for our two week stay. We could see the ocean and the pool through the beautiful palms. The resort came through the recent storm in good shape.
This guy was cutting damaged palm fronds out of the tops of the trees. He used two ropes to climb and a machete to chop away the fronds. Very interesting.
At the top of our list of reasons for loving Secrets is the staff. They do the best to make our stay great. The rum tasting even got me dancing.
Nanc enjoying the rum.
Every evening the entertainment team has a show on the plaza.
Every day they have activities on the beach and at the pool. Darts on the beach in the morning.
Pool exercise in the afternoon.
A new, unique experience for us was a foam party in the pool. Who knew a bunch of crazy adults could have such a fun time.
My beautiful wife.
If you are a beach person, Punta Cana is great with a wide sandy beach.
Depending how the wind was blowing the water sometimes had a lot of seaweed. The day I went in the water was clear and beautiful.
We were there for Halloween and I went as a waiter with my Secrets hat and shirt. I did not win the prize but the staff loved it.
The Tribute Show was fantastic with music honoring a variety of artists from Whitney, to Michael Jackson to Frank Sinatra and more.
We spend every day at the pool soaking up the sun and meeting people. We met Artie, who was born in Muse and now lives in Eldersville (the town next to where we grew up) and knows several of our friends and family. Small world!
No night swimming, but the pools and the lights are beautiful.
The fire show was our one of our favorites. 
This guy must love the heat.
At the end of the show all these women poured the hot wax from their candles on him. Nanc was first and was a bit reluctant but it did not burn him.
The entertainment dancers' "day job," showing off their beautiful Dominican outfits. Cupid was doing a great job shooting the love arrows at unsuspecting couples. 
One thing that never disappoints at Secrets is the staff. Everyone is wonderful from the moment you check in until you have to say good bye. They go above and beyond to make sure all your wants and needs are taken care of. Here is the Preferred Club pool staff whom we interacted with the most.
Here we are with our butler, Martin, who we can't say enough about. He is from Haiti and speaks, French, Spanish and English. He was there for our every need and was personally responsible for our wonderful anniversary celebration.  

We had a great time, but both of us ended our stay getting bad colds, so we were very miserable the last few days. We were also disappointed that Rick and Denise, who were supposed to fly down for a few days, had to cancel.

We are now back in Naples until Saturday and then will be heading to the East coast until the beginning of the year. We will be in Jenson Beach for a month and then two weeks near Jupiter for the holidays before heading to the Keys in January. 

Sunday, November 5, 2017

48th Anniversary!!!!

We love going to Secrets resorts and knew that being there for our anniversary would be a special treat. They go above and beyond to make any special day extra special. 
It started when we arrived a week before the big day. The sign on the door is a nice touch and when we entered the room there were balloons on the curtains.
On November 1st, our big day, we ordered room service breakfast and they even included a bottle of champagne so we could have mimosas. 
We finished breakfast and enjoyed our mimosas on the veranda before heading to the pool to soak up some Dominican sunshine.
We had scheduled massages at the spa for the afternoon. We really like the aqua-cycle they have that we used before the massage. We started in the sauna and steam room and then went through several different water stations. This is not your typical whirlpool, each is designed to stimulate a different part of your body. We then had our massages that were wonderful.  
When we got back to the room Martin our butler had prepared a special treat for us. The bed was covered with rose petal as a special celebration of our 48 years.........
......and the whirlpool was ready for a special bubble bath.
What a relaxing way to get ready for dinner.
Shortly before we left for dinner a knock on the door brought another bottle of champagne and some fruit as an appetizer. 
For dinner we chose Mercure, the French restaurant. Our table was covered with more rose petals. The service was great and the meal was fantastic.
When we finished dinner our waiter brought out one last anniversary celebration, a special cake that he decorated himself. Going to Secrets anytime is wonderful, but being there for a special occasion they really go over the top to make the day the best it can be.