S: Time out in punta cana 2011
BC: Memories of our vacation to Gran Bahia Principe, Punta Cana. October 13-20, 2011 by Margaret Pool
FC: Time Out in Punta Cana
1: At Toronto airport, anxiously waiting for our flight to Paradise!
2: We booked our trip, for October 13, 2011, on the internet and were emailed the ticket to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. | These were our boarding passes for CanJet flight 788.
3: This picture is of the entrance to the lobby and below is the map that helped us navigate the grounds. | We arrived at the resort late in the evening, weary, hungry and thirsty so we promptly ordered room service and cracked open a bottle of rum. Not long after, we were tucked away in our beds.
4: This was the guest services lounge, where we could book our a la cartes, use the internet and even pour ourselves a drink...but only after 10 am. | The staff was always friendly and very helpful in answering any questions we had.
5: The lobby was gorgeous with its polished stone floors, beautiful landscaping and of course a huge mahogany bar.
6: The gardens and villas were constantly being trimmed and maintained by a large staff of gardeners and maintenance workers. We rarely saw anything out of place or in need of paint anywhere on the resort.
7: The paved streets were all lined with beautiful flowering hedges and palm trees. Every day we saw the maids picking flowers from the hedges to decorate the rooms and gardeners removing coconuts from the trees and offering their sweet juices to people passing by.
8: Our room, #105, in Villa 23.
9: The view from our balcony. | A view of our villa from the street.
10: Arn and Sandie's room was on the second floor of this villa. It was about a 1 minute walk from ours.
11: "Randall, Randall, let down your hair." The maid had laid out a sheet in the shape of a dress on their bed and decorated it with flowers.
12: The beach was fabulous with its cool white sand & turquoise waters. | Early each morning, a crew would rake up the seaweed that washed up on shore during the night.
13: The beach had lots of palm trees and cabanas to provide shade and the beach bar was the perfect place to quench your thirst! | The view from my lounger was
14: A ship was intentionally sunk by the resorts in Punta Cana so they could use it to take their guests scuba diving and snorkeling. | These palm trees make a really bold statement against the bright blue Carribean sky.
16: The lobby bar opened at 10 am, so every morning after breakfast we went to see Rafael who would pour us something over ice. He was so happy and very good at his job! He called us his Canadian family; so sweet. | The staff were very friendly and always had a ready smile. This girl greeted us each evening for supper and Santos was one of our waiters.
17: This was one of the bus stops along the resort streets and below is one of the buses. | Other staff at the resort were the pool aerobics leader, the maids and bus boys and of course the pool bartenders.
18: Chillaxin' at the
19: Drinkin' at the
20: Just havin' some !
21: Just together!
22: One of our favourite things to do was people watch. There were always lots of interesting characters like vendors, topless women and one particular girl who thought she was 'all that!'
23: The grounds were gorgeous and immaculately kept.
24: Early in the morning the pool was peaceful and quiet, but by mid day it was just a' rockin'!
25: Waves hitting the shore was the only sound on the beach early in the morning, but it didn't take long to fill all the chairs under the cabanas!
26: The bridges spanning the pool gave a nice view of the ocean. Every afternoon, one of the staff would lead a water aerobics class. Needless to say, we just watched.
27: Water sports like tubing and parasailing were very popular. Little did I know that by the end of our trip, Sandie and I too would go parasailing.
29: One of the highlights of our trip was parasailing. Sandie really wanted to do it and I thought 'now's our chance, why not!'
31: Some other things we saw on our trip were native parrots, lots of "cheapy, cheapy" vendors and geckos. Every day we emailed home and had delicious meals at the buffet.
32: We came in the dark and we left in the dark. After we checked in our luggage, they wanted to recheck it, so this young fellow, Miguel, helped us out. Sandie found this sign in a snack shop window...we just had to ! It was a very modern but 'open air' airport and we had to walk from the gate to the plane.
33: Thanks to Arn and Sandie for joining us on this trip. We needed this vacation more than you could know and we had a great time! Thank you for your friendship, sense of adventure and willingness to let loose and just have some fun.