The D. R.
That’s what my friend Laura calls the Dominican Republic.
We call it our vacation destination this summer.
We love a big city vacation, like New York last December, but I think we love a beach vacation just a little bit more. Sunshine, salt water, rum, sand…….are we missing anything? Not in the DR they aren’t.
Goodbye Dallas, Goodbye Miami…..
A few Bloody Marys and Caribbean islands later….
Hello Dominican Republic…..
It took a bit of scouring Travelocity to find a resort that didn’t have a bathtub in the middle of every room. (Jamie doesn’t mind…….but I just think it’s kinda, ummmm, gross. I mean, I know that other people have stayed in our room……but I don’t like being reminded of what they had been doing in our room.)
We settled on the Paradisus Punta Cana. (Technically it’s in Bavaro)
It’s been a banner year in our household, with a couple great personal accomplishments, so we treated ourselves and upgraded from not just all-inclusive but to the “Royal Service” experience. (We’re normally placed in the very back of the resort by the staff entrance.) Aside from the ocean view, just 20 steps to the beach, our “Royal Service ” experience came with a butler.
I know! How bourgeois. We felt like Star-Bellied Sneetches with our “Royal Service” bracelets. That’s right, we’re better than you.
OK, “Butler” isn’t exactly the right word. Enrique was really more of a personal concierge. He made all our dinner reservations, stocked our in-room bar, and even took us on a private tour of the resort.
Speaking of the resort! It was freaking huge. It was about a mile from the lobby to our room. Good thing there was a shuttle, we were on a lazy vacation, not a calisthenic vacation. The grounds were just beautiful, and sprinkled with flamingos and black hummingbirds.
Since no trip to a foreign country is complete without some kind of excursion, we shuttled over to the genuine Punta Cana and spent a day at sea with Side by Side Adventures on a “Booze Cruise”. Our crew – Raul, Shaggy, Scooby, and Fred – was just outstanding. (Yupp, those were their names. At least, that’s what they told us they were) Those guys made every minute of the day fun.
The cocktails didn’t hurt either.
We snorkeled over a sunken statue garden….
Had grilled lobster and pina coladas at the Westin Resort on the beach….
and relaxed even more in a natural ocean pool…..
But wait, that’s not all…
Back on land we took a short hike through a nature preserve and cooled off from the day in a natural fresh water lagoon.
It was an unbelievable day in paradise. Thank you again Side by Side.
If any of y’all ae ever in Punta Cana, or Bavaro, take the trip. You’ll love it.
The next couple of days we were back at the Beach at the Paradisus.
We parked our butts on beach chairs and napped most of the days away.
At night all we did was eat. The food was really pretty good for an all-inclusive resort. We had most of our lunches from the buffet, and diners at the restaurants that Enrique picked for us.
Loved every one of them,
But the best restaurant he saved for our last night; Passion at the Paradisus.
The food was so beautiful….like art.
I had the 7 course tasting menu and a couple of glasses of the finest chardonnay that the Kendal Jackson winery produces.
Our waiter, Danny, asked if I was going to take a picture of every course…
I sure did.
6 days went by so quickly….almost too quickly.
We grabbed our last Dominican breakfast at Lapolapa. I fell hard for the mangu. (That’s mashed plantains, with salami and an over-easy egg)
Spent a few more hours in the adults-only pool….Which, opposed to the family pool, never seemed to have more than 10 people in it at a time.
I grabbed one last mojito, of course, and wrote out a few postcards.
Jamie says that no one does that anymore, but I still do. I know we’ll be home before they get to their respective recipients…..But hey, I love getting them….and you reap what you sow. Am I right?
You know those vacations that are just a continuous week of eating, drinking, and relaxing neck-deep in warm water…….while still eating and drinking? That was this vacation.
We said good-bye to the Dominican Republic…..and returned to Big D.
(Y’all may have noticed that this was a drama free trip.
NO hurricanes (we’ve had 3), NO political uprisings, NO airplane trouble, NO firing squads……None of the usual drama that always seems to attach itself to our vacations.
“Not today, Satan!”
There weren’t even any other people to get in our way.
Seriously. Scroll back up and look for other people in our pictures….there’s just a handful.
And that handful had the good sense to stay away from us……)