Saturday, June 28, 2014

The Destination Wedding Planning Process #Infographic

Friday, June 27, 2014

New and Noteworthy in the world of #Destinationwedding and #Honeymoons

Sugar Bay Resort & Spa, St. Thomas
AMResorts will take over the 294-room Sugar Bay Resort & Spa in St. Thomas next Tuesday, rebranding it as the Dreams Sugar Bay St. Thomas Resort & Spa in November after several months of renovations that will include guestroom upgrades.

Riu Hotels & Resorts unveiled new menu options at its themed restaurants at the Riu Palace locations in Cabo San Lucas, Cancun, Playa del Carmen, the Riviera Maya, and the Riviera Nayarit. The changes include almost 100 new dishes, giving guests six main course choices (up from four).

The One&Only Hayman Island private island resort in Australia's Great Barrier Reef region will open after a huge makeover, including a redesigned "pool wing" that's now all suite.

Air Canada Vacations will roll out new nonstop flights on January 1st, 2015 between Montreal and Curacao, with introductory package prices on the route when you book by July 31, 2014.

The Jewel Runaway Bay Beach & Golf Resort in Jamaica will add a beachfront water park in December with water slides, raft rides, a "lazy river," a dining plaza with a bar, and other amenities.

The 1,600-room SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino will open ahead of schedule (Aug 23) rather than Labor Day). It will be the first brand-new Strip resort to open in almost five years.

The 124-room Capella Marigot Bay Resort and Marina in St. Lucia will re-open officially on August 15th, (after a "soft opening" next month) with new suites, restaurants, health and wellness facilities, a cigar bar, and a "rum cave." (It's the former Discovery at Marigot Bay property.)

Investors announced plans to resurrect the Moulin Rouge Casino and Resort in Las Vegas on a 15-acre site in the city's downtown district. The former Moulin Rouge property was known for being one of America's first racially integrated casinos.

Azul Fives Resort, Mayan Riviera
Transat Holidays rolled out a groups promotion at the Azul Fives Hotels in Mexico's Riviera Maya region, with $300 discounts per couple and lower minimum deposits ($100, not $250), plus agent benefits, when you book by June 30th for travel Nov 1 - April 30, 2015. (Starting Nov 1st, Azul Fives will only be bookable in Canada through Transat Holidays.)

Air Transat began its new Prague packages this week, with Tuesday flights from both Montreal and Toronto set to run through Oct 7th.

For more information and to request your free Destination Wedding or Honeymoon Quote, please contact the experts at Romantic Planet Vacations 1-866-247-8123 or

Friday, June 20, 2014

Moon Palace to open in Jamaica

Palace Resorts acquires Sunset Jamaica Grande

By Gay Nagle Myers, Travel Weekly

Palace Resorts will assume ownership of the 730-room Sunset Jamaica Grande in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, on July 7, and will close it on Sept. 1 for renovations.

The resort will reopen as the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande in early 2015.

"When we designed our strategic five-year growth plan, we listed several destinations as priorities, and Jamaica was at the top of that list," said Gibran Chapur, executive vice president for Palace Resorts.

"We believe Jamaica is the most important tourism destination in the Caribbean, and we found the Sunset Jamaica Grande to be the perfect opportunity for us to enter this market."

Palace Resorts currently owns and operates seven properties in Mexico, including the Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort, Cancun.

Sunset Resorts has three other properties in Jamaica: two in Montego Bay and one in Negril.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Forever Starts in Barbados: How to score free travel and a wedding for bride-to-be

Canadian brides fly, stay and wed for free in Barbados!

In the competitive market of destination weddings, the Barbados Tourism Authority has just come up with the cleverest promotion to bring more brides to Barbados - by offering them free trips!

Photo provided by The Barbados Tourism Authority
For the first fifty brides from Canada who book and register their group to Barbados with Romantic Planet Vacations from now until May next year for travel Sept 1, 2014 to December 15, 2015, they will receive complimentary airfare (valued up to CAD$1000), complimentary accommodations at select hotels in Barbados, and a complimentary wedding package. Now that's a bargain!

Flights are available with Air Canada or Westjet to Barbados from most cities across Canada with a connection in Toronto. Most people buy a full travel package to include accommodations, airport transfers and airfare, all of which can be arranged with group travel and destination wedding specialists, Romantic Planet Vacations. 

Romantic Planet Vacations has been serving destination wedding brides and grooms and their wedding groups since 2004 and will be celebrating their tenth anniversary this November. All of their agents are certified Honeymoon and Destination Wedding Specialists and all have been trained in the Barbado's Tourism Authority's 'Barbados Elite Club' making them exclusive leaders in travel experiences to Barbados.

As long as the wedding group books a minimum of ten rooms for four nights, the bride qualifies for all of the benefits. The participating hotels are;

Photo provided by the Barbados Tourism Authority
1.    Sugar Cane Club
2.    The Crane Residential Resort
3.    Turtle Beach Resort
4.    Crystal Cove
5.    Tamarind
6.    Colony Club
7.    The House
8.    Bougainvillea Beach Resort
9.    Island Inn
10.  Mango Bay
11.  Accra Beach Hotel & Spa
12.  Ocean Two Resort and Residences
13.  Sea Breeze
14.  South Gap
15.  Little Arches

And if that's not enough, the participating hotels are throwing in a free wedding! This includes;

o Officiant’s Fees/ Minister’s Fees
o Transport to Registry Office to obtain marriage license
o Bottle of Sparkling Wine for Ceremony
o Wedding Cake
o Decorated wedding area/arch
o Bridal bouquet
o Groom boutonniere
o Recorded Music

To obtain your free discounted group quote today to Barbados, please contact the specialists at Romantic Planet Vacations at 1-866-247-8123 or and they'll be happy to get you on your way. All you need is the groom! 

For more information, please visit; 

Monday, May 26, 2014

Honeymoon like Kim Kardashian and Kayne West

So you may not have the same honeymoon budget as Kim Kardashian and Kayne West do but it doesn't mean you can't still travel like them.

After exchanging their vows in an over-the-top ceremony at Florence's 16th-century Forte di Belvedere, Italy on Saturday, May 24, the newlywed couple Kim Kardashian and Kayne West, headed off to Castlemartyr Resort in the Cork woodlands of Ireland to enjoy their five-day honeymoon.

The 103 bedrooms and suites at The Castlemartyr 5-star Resort boasts lavish views of ornate gardens, parklands and lakes. The property has a 10-room treatment spa, a fitness studio, a Ron Kirby designed golf course, four restaurants, and 800-year-old castle ruins. The 18th century classic manor was originally built by the Knights Templar under Richard Earl De Clare, also known as Strongbow. 

Even though the famous Kardashian and West couple may have forked out upwards of US$67,000 a night to stay in the luxurious Presidential Suite, you can still have the same experience at the same resort a fraction of the price. Romantic Planet Vacations, specialists in destination weddings and honeymoons, is offering the standard double deluxe room for 4 nights from only around US$900 in total. Or upgrade from there and live like a lord and lady of the manor in one of the four exclusive suit residences located in the heart of the manor from only around US$2500 for 4 nights in the Grand Suite category. 

The resort is nestled in 220 acres of parklands and nature with an abundance of wildlife and gardens. You can take a walk with "Earl" and "Countess", Irish Setter dogs and residents of Castlemartyr Resort. You can also hire a car and drive through the nearny city of Cork and the countryside to visit the many ancient and historic sites that Ireland has to offer. Perhaps you want to impress your new wife or husband with your archery and laser clay pigeon shooting skills or go for a bike ride, horseback ride or carriage ride throughout the grounds. In evening, hang out at the Knight Bar, the center of activity at the resort. 

Regardless of what you do or don't do at Castlemartyr Resort, Romantic Planet Vacations has made it easy to honeymoon like the style.

For more information on this or other unique and romantic honeymoon options to Ireland and Europe, please contact Romantic Planet Vacations at 1-866-247-8124 or

By: Laurie Keith
Romantic Planet Vacations

@KimKardashian @kanyewest @TourismIreland @romanticplanet @CastlemartyrRes #kimye #kimyewedding #kimyehoneymoon

Monday, May 12, 2014

News from Mayan Riviera and Cancun

The 144-suite Generations Riviera Maya held its official grand opening this past Monday in Mexico. The resort (sitting near El Dorado Casitas Royale) offers four dining venues, two bars, a kids club, and other guest services.

The Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya held its official grand opening a day earlier in Mexico. The 1,264-room resort boasts nine restaurants, eight bars and lounges, kids and teen clubs, a Rock Spa facility, and other amenities.

AMResorts will rebrand the existing Grand Oasis Viva resort in Mexico as the 441-room Dreams Sands Cancun Resort & Spa in September. The property will offer eight restaurants, six bars, a kids club, two pools, a Dreams Spa, and other amenities.

On Nov. 8, Cirque du Soleil will open a new year-round show in the 600-seat Vidanta Theater in Mexico's Riviera Maya region (near the Grand Mayan resort). The 70-minute show will run eight times each week.

Excellence Group Luxury Hotels & Resorts (which operates the Excellent and Beloved Hotels brands) announced a new brand called Finest Resorts. The first property will be the 450-suite Finest Playa Mujeres opening next April near Cancun. The Finest brand will be an all-inclusive mix between the adults-only Excellence and the spa-focused Beloved - open to all ages but with 20 percent of the suites reserved for couples.

Contact for your expert travel advice on your upcoming honeymoon or destination wedding.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Self-Guided Europe River Cruise Experience Perfect for Young (or young at heart) Travelers

So here's the scoop. You love the idea of cruising and bus tours but cringe at the thought of being stuck aboard a ship or bus full of blue hairs and fighting over bingo dabbers. You want to explore Europe but let's face it, you don't have the time, nor desire, to backpack it. You want the best of both worlds - an organized trip where you won't miss out on any of the great wonders, but you also want the freedom to anchor for a few more days at a place you love.

Like Lewis and Clark, Alexander Mackenzie, and Jacques Cartier, we know that some of the best routes to explore worldwide are by river, hence the massive and growing popularity of river cruising now in Europe. This is certainly a viable option for you, except, their big river cruise-lines have a strict itinerary to adhere to. What do you think Cartier would have done if his ship was set to go North, instead of West to discover the St. Lawrence River. On your big ship river cruise, there will be no stopping at Marmande, a little village in France 
for the Wine and Cheese Festival. Nope, you can't stop at that little cafe overlooking the square to watch the sunset because the ship is leaving at 5:00 PM and no way can they navigate narrow channels to get you to that hidden medieval castle. Oh, and heaven for bid if you want to stay up past 10:00 PM to enjoy some music and look at the stars on top deck while the other cruising patrons are already fast asleep.

So what is the young explorer in you to do? The answer, gather up your friends or family and rent your own river boat! 

The newest, and most exciting travel product now available to Canadians is hiring a little barge, yacht, house-boat, fishing boat - whatever you name it, and be your own captain, your own Alexander Mackenzie! Included in the hire, you will receive hands-on instructions to how to run the equipment, maps and suggested itineraries so you can go and explore the rivers and canals of France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Ireland, and/or Poland entirely on your own. There are even circuits that are recommended for nature, gastronomy, swimming, heritage and cultural/urban. Fishing from your boat is no problem for those fishing enthusiasts, or for those who want to catch and cook their own dinner. Another great feature is that you can also rent bikes for the duration of your stay and store them on-board. Then when you port, you can further explore the country-side, town or city. It's like bringing your own home with you wherever you go!

Destination Wedding Planner, Laurie Keith, of Romantic Planet Vacations, had her wedding in Mexico last year and hasn't yet planned her own honeymoon. For a well-traveled couple who's been-there-done-that, renting their own river boat in Europe this summer is now their top choice.

The cost of renting your very own river boat depends greatly on the size of the boat itself, where, and the duration of stay but most are less expensive than European hotel stays and definitely less than the large river cruise-lines. A small river boat for two people for 7 days from Burgundy to Loire for example, is only about CAD$600 per person in September!

Please contact Romantic Planet Vacations at or 1-866-247-8123 for more information.