Category

Uncategorized

Unico Hotel Riviera Maya

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

UNICO 20º87º – an Overview

When it comes to Adults-only All-inclusive resorts there are all sorts of options in Mexico and the Caribbean!

Some specialize in accommodating couples only, some others are open to anyone as long as they are 18 years or older – some are budget friendly, some quite luxury. Some are tranquil, others are party-central.

Some are on fantastic beaches – some are not. Even within a given brand there are wide differences based on the size of the resort, the age, the destination and specific location within the destination…so many variables!

One variable that is often overlooked are the things that are actually included – and at Unico Hotel Riviera Maya that list is long indeed!

Sure, they include all food and beverage (very good food and premium brands of spirits) – and they include entertainment – and activities on both land and in the water – but they also include something else that no other resort does…unlimited spa, golf & select off resort tours – Included!

You do pay a tax on the value of the spa, golf & tours that you consume, but it is a steal when you consider what you experience and what you would have paid for those experiences elsewhere

To get a sense of the vibe and feel of the resort check out this short video-

 

Your Local Host

It’s not exactly butler service, and it’s not exactly concierge service – probably best described as something in between, but the Local Host assigned to you will be very helpful with all sorts of things-

Your local host service brings the UNICO 20˚87˚ experience to the next level

  • Insider’s guide into the local scene—from hard-to-get reservations to the best-kept secret spots
  • Assistance with check-in and check-out
  • Late check out requests
  • Restaurant reservations
  • Tours, golf, and spa reservations
  • Planning special events or occasions
  • Packing and/or unpacking
  • Shoe shine, ironing and steaming services
  • Laundry service
  • Cleaning and maintenance requests
  • Spa tub preparation
  • Bag pick-up at check-out
  • Mixology program
  • Pillow menu request
  • Additional bathroom amenities
  • Aromatherapy

For more info and insights into the Unico experience click this link

Escape to Costa Rica for 7 Days from $659 per person

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

Here’s a Great Deal on a Fantastic Vacation to Costa Rica

Visit the Eco-Paradise that is the country of Costa Rica with inclusions of daily breakfast, tours with a Naturalist, comfortable accommodations & much more on this unbelievably low priced tour-

Itinerary for Costa Rica Escape with Globus  

 

Itinerary

Day 1 ARRIVE IN SAN JOSÉ, COSTA RICA

Arrive in San José, where you will be met by a Globus representative.

Day 2 SAN JOSÉ–MONTEVERDE

This morning, depart San José for the cloud forest of Monteverde. Situated on the continental divide under a misty cloud coverage, Monteverde is one of the most bio-diverse areas on the planet. Exploring the trails here reveals green habitats teeming with life. Over 3,000 species of plants, 400 species of birds, 60 species of bats, 1,200 species of amphibians and 700 species of butterflies – to name a few – call this area home. It is also one of the last remaining places in the world that is home to all six species of cats: ocelots, jaguars, jaguarundi, pumas, oncillas, and marguays. If you are lucky, this is also a great spot to catch a glimpse of one of Costa Rica’s most beautiful birds, the resplendent quetzal.

Breakfast Breakfast
Day 3 MONTEVERDE

Today, visit SANTA ELENA CLOUD FOREST RESERVE during a Naturalist-guided walking tour. Established in 1989, the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve comprises an area of 765 acres, and is home to forest fauna such as sloths, jaguars, ocelots, monkeys, coatis, and numerous species of birds. With almost 100% humidity throughout the year, the cloud forest experiences almost 12 feet of rain per year. This afternoon, you may wish to explore this verdant area further or perhaps head into town or venture into the rainforest canopy for a bird’s eye view of the region.

Breakfast Breakfast
Day 4 MONTEVERDE–ARENAL

Depart Monteverde for the must-see town of Arenal located in the shadow of Arenal Volcano. Currently, Arenal Volcano is in a resting phase but prior to 2010 the volcano was known for its consistent lava flows and gas emissions. Arenal is home to cascading waterfalls, thriving rainforests, abundant wildlife, and a plethora of outdoor activities. After settling in, experience the magic of the resort’s pool and Jacuzzis or consider a walk along the nearby nature trails in search of 300- to 400-year-old trees, colorful frogs, monkeys, birds, and possibly small animals native to the area.

Breakfast Breakfast
Day 5 ARENAL

Today will be spent exploring ARENAL NATIONAL PARK and its vast primary rainforest, and learning about its rich biodiversity. Venture into the jungle canopy on the ARENAL HANGING BRIDGES, which consist of 15 bridges suspended in the treetops and allows your Naturalist to point out various species of plants, birds, butterflies, monkeys, sloths, and other animals commonly found here. On a clear day, you will get a 360-degree view of the tropical rainforest, as well as stunning views of Arenal Volcano. This afternoon is free to explore at your leisure. Tonight, perhaps take an optional tour to the world-famous Tabacón Hot Springs. These natural hot springs are the result of rainwater heated by magma in the Earth’s interior that then rises to the surface, taking with it minerals found in the Earth’s crust. Enjoy time to relax in the waters that are so beneficial to your skin and body.

Breakfast Breakfast
Day 6 ARENAL–SARCHI–SAN JOSÉ

En route to San José, visit SARCHI Village, known as the center of Costa Rican handicrafts and where you’ll see the artists in their workshops making the famous ox carts. Enjoy time here for lunch before continuing to San José for a short city ORIENTATION to see the historic National Theater, the Metropolitan Cathedral, and other sites in downtown San José.

Breakfast Breakfast
Day 7 SAN JOSÉ

Your tour ends with breakfast this morning.

Breakfast Breakfast

 

Contact “Your friends….in the travel business” at EZTravelPad for specific dates and details then get ready to go see one of the most environmentally friendly nations on the planet and discover abundant wildlife all along the way

Congrats on EZTravelPad’s 10 Year Anniversary

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

It’s now been a few days since EZTravelPad turned 10 – and I love it!

To say that there was a clear sense of what EZTravelPad would become would be a huge exaggeration – there was a dream that I could make a living helping people with their vacation planning… at a time when the US economy was at the depths of it’s worst recession since the great depression and the general thinking by most people was that travel agencies were dead and everyone was going to plan all their travel on their own with only the help of the internet – WRONG!

It’s crazy really, to think that someone like myself – with no experience in the travel industry could start at such an inopportune time with woefully inadequate funds (remember that recession thing – it had taken it’s toll let me tell you) and make it a success, but it happened – and YOU are part of the reason why!

Thank You!

It is because of the trust of so many that I was able to grow this little idea into something respectable. We have been the recipient of many awards, including Karisma resorts, Funjet Vacations, St Lucia Tourism Board, WeddingWire’s  “Couples Choice” award  &  The Knot’s “Best of The Knot” in each of the past 5 years running achieving  Hall of Fame status!

We have a strong team here at EZTravelPad and we are getting stronger every day thanks to the great reviews, repeat trips and referrals that we receive so often from previous clients just like you – so one more time…THANK YOU

We will strive to do even better for the next 10 and beyond!

Here are a few of my favorite photos in some of my favorite destinations

Wine themed River Cruise on Danube

By | Blog, Cruise, Europe, Uncategorized | No Comments

Wine, wine and more wine!

As I write this I am sailing down the Danube river through Austria on AmaWaterways gorgeous ship AmaCerto enjoying a 7 night wine themed river cruise.

If you know anything about a river cruise with AmaWaterways you probably know that they include wine and beer for both lunch and dinner (and champagne for breakfast!) – but what you might not know is that on a wine themed cruise there are so many more opportunities to discover new favorites during several tastings that are included, such as the tour and tasting at Castle Gobelsburg pictured below.

I can’t speak for every single wine themed cruise, but on this one there is a vineyard from California named Graveyard Vineyards that is hosting even MORE wine tastings.
So what does that look like? Well here’s our experience during a week on AmaCerto

  • Monday – board ship – lunch (with wine)  – Dinner at Chef’s Table with several courses and wine pairings – late night City Illuminations tour (outstanding cruise along Budapest waterfront with buildings lighted)
  • Tuesday – Morning excursion consisting of Budapest city walk, city market then back to the ship for lunch and an afternoon wine tasting courtesy Graveyard Vineyards and a terrific dinner in the main dining room
  • Wednesday – Breakfast (with Champagne), Lunch (with wine), Dinner (with wine) then an evening of traditional Viennese fun with lots of wine, dancing & song at Winery & Heuriger Christ
  • Thursday – Breakfast (forgot the champagne) then excursion -Bike ride in Vienna then lunch (with wine). Mid-afternoon wine tasting and aroma sampling courtesy Graveyard Vineyards then an after dinner excursion to Castle Gobelsburg for wine tastings
  • Friday – Hike to Durnstein castle then wine and apricot tasting in Durnstein, Austria. Back to the ship for lunch with wine then late afternoon excursion to Castle Clam for a wine tasting before dinner (with wine)
  • Saturday – Most people with full day excursions so late breakfast (champagne if desired) then late dinner in private dining with plenty of wine!
  • Sunday – Breakfast (champagne again??) – lunch (wine again??) – pre-dinner champagne toast to the week that has been – pre-dinner Oktoberfest celebration in port of Passau (lots of beer) – dinner (with wine)
  • Monday – Time to leave, but friends made and experiences shared will last a lifetime….

Oh – and it is TOTALLY not just about the wine…this was an outstanding cruise with terrific tours included – much more on the highlight destinations of Budapest, Vienna, Durnstein, Linz & more coming up on future blog posts

Oh…and the cuisine!

To learn more about AmaWaterways, River Cruising, or all sorts of other vacation planning just get in touch with “Your friends….in the travel business” at EZTravelPad

US National Parks Like You Have Never Experienced Before!

By | Adventure, Blog, Family Travel, Uncategorized | No Comments

You don’t have to Leave the US to Experience Volcanoes and Waterfalls

Imagine cruising through some of the most pristine scenery that the American West has to offer, the US National Parks and Monuments, and doing so in a style you have never even before imagined – with a group of friends – or with your entire family – riding in style with a professional driver in a tricked out vehicle called a Limo Liner.

It’s a very comfortable vehicle with leather sofas, large windows, comfort controls and also features

  • In transit WiFi
  • In transit Television

It’s an all-inclusive ride for almost a week checking out the best of the west (that’s right – a hospitality chef will be serving guests throughout the day with included wine, beer, soft drinks, coffee, tea, seasonal fresh fruits, snacks & much more)

Tour options include

  • Badlands and Wind Cave
  • Yellowstone and Grand Teton
  • Crater Lake and Redwoods
  • Salt Lake City, Moab, Bryce Canyon, Zion and Las Vegas

and several other options as well…

Of course you won’t spend the night on the Limo Liner – you will be sleeping in comfortable hotels, lodges & resorts along the way

Why in the world would you drive yourself when you can enjoy the luxury and safety of such a journey?

For much more info and to get your adventure started reach out to “Your friends….in the travel business” contact EZTravelPad today!

Don’t go to Mexico! (or almost anywhere else in the world because you’re scared??)

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

C’mon People – Can’t You See Thru This Hype?

If you care to make informed decisions of where to go on vacation, and if it is safe to enjoy a Mexican Beach Vacation then the following letter from Apple Vacations’ President Tim Mullen does a nice job of calming fears (stoked for obvious political reasons). Look at the facts, don’t feed into the hype

Sep.1, 2017

Dear Travel Partner,

As you know, there have been a number of unfavorable stories about travel to Mexico in the media over the course of the last month, from the tragic story of the young woman from Milwaukee who died while on a family vacation, to the recent Travel Advisory issued by the US State Department.

These stories are especially disturbing to all of us for a variety of reasons. First, we want all of our customers to return home safe after a relaxing and enjoyable vacation. Secondly, we know that Mexico is a wonderful destination for a beach vacation, and Apple Vacations has been sending guests to beautiful resorts across Mexico for nearly 50 years. Finally, we all make our living in this business, and when tourism to Mexico gets a bad name, business suffers.

Mexico is one of the world’s great tourism destinations. We are confident that our customers are safe when traveling to the resorts we offer. Apple Vacations intends to be more active in working with our travel partners, the Mexico Tourism Board, and others to tell the full story, address safety concerns, and put some of the recent stories in perspective.

In response to concerns that visitors to all-inclusive resorts have been offered tainted alcohol, we have requested that all of our partner resorts confirm their liquor handling processes. Mexico’s federal and state governments have conducted searches and inspections, and are generally increasing enforcement. Our sister company, AMResorts, is conducting an especially rigorous review of its processes. We are stressing the importance of drinking responsibly, never mixing medications and alcohol, and taking normal precautions to prevent dehydration, heat exhaustion or other health risks while on vacation in Mexico…or anywhere else.

The State Department’s travel advisories are important and cannot be dismissed. However, they should be read carefully and taken in context. The crime and violence rates referenced in the recent travel advisory are for broad regions, while the incidence of this activity tends to be highly concentrated in areas which are not frequented by travelers. It is also worth noting that the crime statistics referenced in the advisory for Mexican destinations are lower than many U.S. cities. In fact, many countries have issued travel advisories to their citizens, warning about the dangers of travel in the U.S. In both cases, visitors who use common sense and travel in areas frequented by other tourists are safe and have enjoyable visits. Finally, it’s worth noting that our customers are picked up by Amstar DMC at their arrival airport and spend their time in restricted access, security patrolled all-inclusive resorts which are well-staffed and offer many activities and amenities.

When addressing concerns with your customers, it is helpful to reference sources not directly involved in our business, since they are objective and offer more credibility. Click here for a message I received from the Mexico Tourism Board which has links to stories in various U.S. and international publications about travel to Mexico. I encourage you to read these articles and forward them to customers who may have concerns.

As always, thank you for your continued support. I am confident that through our combined efforts, we will be successful in persuading potential travelers that they can travel to Mexico with confidence, and enjoy a safe and enjoyable vacation. If you have any specific questions or concerns, please contact your Apple Vacations Sales Representative.

Best Regards,

Tim Mullen
President, Apple Vacations

 

Tim does a better job than I can of rationally laying out the case for Mexico – and the link to several news articles can help to put things into perspective

If you want to go to Mexico (or think you might) because you like the idea of experiencing a terrific all-inclusive resort on a great beach with warm weather then Mexico is a top pick.

If you don’t like the beach, or aren’t interested in all-inclusive, or hate Mexicans, then maybe best to make another choice

As for me…

Dos margaritas más por favor y que camino al baño?

Join EZTravelPad as we Cruise the Mediterranean in 2018

By | Cruise, Europe, Uncategorized | No Comments

Cruise the Mediterranean in Style with EZTravelPad

That’s right – please consider joining us on a Mediterranean cruise aboard Celebrity Constellation sailing from Barcelona, Spain on June 30, 2018

We will be hitting some of the best and most historic ports in Europe such as Rome –

Italy, Rome, Colosseum, monument, historical, couple, scooter, Shore Excursions, Europe, sightseeing, Vespa

Italy, Rome, Colosseum, monument, historical, couple, scooter, Shore Excursions, Europe, sightseeing, V

 

…and many more!

You will never forget the times we share as we sail the Italian Renaissance itinerary to the following cities-

 

DAY PORT ARRIVE DEPART
1 Barcelona, Spain 5:00 PM
2 Cannes, France 10:00 AM 8:00 PM
3 Genoa, Italy 7:00 AM 6:00 PM
4 Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy 7:00 AM 7:00 PM
5 At Sea
6 Kotor, Montenegro 10:00 AM 6:00 PM
7 Zadar, Croatia 11:00 AM 7:00 PM
8 Venice, Italy 6:30 AM
 Number of Nights: 7

 

If you prefer a visual, here’s the map

Italian Renaissance Cruise map

 

Seriously – how awesome is this itinerary!!??

Of course we will be doing lots of exploring on the mainland and we will be kicking things off a couple days early arriving in Barcelona early enough to catch a few of the sites and doing the same in Venice at the end of the cruise

Pricing is as follows (just a sample of some)

  • $1209 per person on a Cat 9 Inside Cabin
  • $1689 per person for a Cat 4 Oceanview cabin
  • $2159 per person for a Cat 2A Balcony cabin

Also the current sale gets 1 free perk with options including-

  • Free Unlimited Beverage Package (includes alcohol drinks)
  • Free WiFi
  • Prepaid Gratuities

So are you interested in joining us to go see Europe in style?

Contact Scott for complete details!

 

Friends Party at Private Villa – Chic Mansion

By | All-Inclusive Resorts, Caribbean, Dining, Luxury, Uncategorized | No Comments

Seriously- how cool would it be to share this amazing mansion with 5 other couples?

This is an 11,500 square-foot luxury house with six stunning guestrooms each with dedicated en suites. As a part of one of the hippest adults-only all-inclusive resorts in the Dominican Republic.

The villa offers guests six suite-style bedrooms which mean that you and eleven friends can enjoy the house’s private amenities and the resort’s Diamond Club™ privileges together.

Your stay in the Mansion include luxurious round-trip airport transfers, butler service, private pool cabana with attendant and even a complimentary spa treatment for each guest. The villa has its own private pool, hot tub, patio, sound system and games room with a pool table.

636246670786808000

It’s gorgeous, it’s spacious, and it’s perfect for a private party such as a couples retreat or even to celebrate a Bachelor/Bachelorette party

Check out the Private pool complete with hot tub!!

635872700081929000

 

 

635872700079469000

 

Game room is complete with bar, pool table and stripper pole (not pictured)

636246666897884000

 

Amazing living space with huge screen and more…..

635872700075779000

 

and when the smallest and least amazing bedroom looks like this….

636246660910292000

 

oh wait….you also get a private dinner with private chef!

636246674437832000

 

But remember – this is not just a stand-alone mansion, it’s also located on the same property as one of the coolest 5 Star Adults-Only All-Inclusive resorts in the Caribbean

Dine around outside the mansion at restaurants (included!) featuring cuisine such as

  • Italian
  • Ceviche
  • Steak House
  • Middle Eastern
  • International
  • Pub Grill

…and more

With nightly entertainment, a terrific beach, several bars and even a mermaid pool this is something to experience and share with your friends

All this and you can get in for under $1500 per person for 5 nights!!

So what are you waiting for…get your friends together for the ultimate couples retreat!

Contact “Your friends….in the travel business? at EZTravelPad for more info

 

For Caribbean’s Best Honeymoon Experience

By | All-Inclusive Resorts, Caribbean, Honeymoons and Weddings, Romance, Uncategorized | No Comments

Learn how we can help you plan the perfect Honeymoon or Destination Wedding at Virtual Sandals Caribbean Night

Sandals Royal Caribbean (2)

Tune in to our live webinar at 8pm EST on Wednesday October 19, 2016 to learn what the Sandals experience is all about during Sandals Virtual Caribbean Night event.

For decades Sandals resorts have been synonymous with romance on some of the Caribbean’s best islands, learn why Sandals luxury included resorts are so often couples’ first choice when thinking about Honeymoons, Destination Weddings & romantic vacation experiences in the Caribbean

EZTravelPad is one of a select group of Certified Sandals Specialist agencies and teams with Sandals Resorts to bring you this unique event and opportunity to learn why Sandals may be your best choice for your next trip to the Caribbean

Learn-

  • What the Sandals experience is all about and why it’s different
  • Which islands Sandals resorts call home
  • What differentiates each resort with varying inclusions and unique personalities
  • How you can earn an additional $250 spa credit (and maybe even another surprise perk!) simply by attending

This 45-60 minute presentation is offered to you free of charge and from the comfort of your own home – register now by using this link

Ask all the questions you like and learn from others – gain vast knowledge – score a great deal!

The EZTravelPad team hopes that you are able to join us in sharing one of the best resort experiences anywhere and why Sandals might be your best option for the most important trip of your life…YOUR Honeymoon or Destination Wedding!!

 

Napa Wine Country – A Memorable Experience

By | Adventure, Honeymoons and Weddings, Romance, Uncategorized | No Comments

A Honeymoon, Anniversary or other Romantic Getaway in Napa Valley

 

Is a romantic getaway on your radar this year? Are you planning a Honeymoon? Anniversary celebration? Maybe a fun getaway with some friends? With current events such as the Zika virus, terrorist threats, etc  many are opting to stay in the U.S. this year.

 

Sure, staying in the U.S. might cost a bit more than jetting off to an all-inclusive beach resort in the Caribbean but for many, sacrificing a few extra $$ and forgoing the fruity drinks with umbrellas in them are a trade-off that they are comfortable making if it means they can opt for a fantastic Cabernet in California’s wine country

EZTravelPad has cultivated a great relationship with one of the best options in the region – Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa. Not only can we expertly curate the entire adventure for you, we can leverage our relationships to your benefit and even arrange for some extra inclusions that you would not otherwise be entitled to!

Enjoy spending some quality time in one of the beautiful Bella suites…

Bella Suite The Meritage

Bella Suite The Meritage

 

Experience a morning bike ride through the vineyard….

20151112-3853-meritage-biking-small

 

A hot air balloon ride followed by a champagne brunch…

 

Hot air ballon over Napa vineyard at daybreak

Spend some time lounging at the pool….

poolsideloungewithcouple-themeritageresortandspa

 

Treat yourself to some of the nearby local wineries on a tasting tour….

Spend some time before or after in one of America’s great cities….San Francisco and the greater Bay Area

With so much to experience, and the safety and security of the “Good old U S of A” leaving you with little to worry about you will find yourselves having an unforgettable romantic experience.

For more info on this or other great options for your next great vacation experience get in touch with “Your friends….in the travel business” at EZTravelPad today!