Cordell Finds Paradise at Paradisus Cancun

When picking an all-inclusive resort, one of the most important factors to consider for myself is the beach. As a guy from the prairies, I need to experience the ocean, sand and sun. Visiting a beach is important to me and it brings so much happiness to my life. The Paradisus Cancun’s beach has exceeded my every expectation. Here are my top four reasons the Paradisus Cancun is a must do beach vacation:

  1. Sunrise/ sunset
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From dawn until dusk, this is a beach that keeps you enthralled. If you are a morning person, this resort has stunning sunrises! You will be only one of a few people up at 7am but it is well worth it. I wasn’t ready to go down to the beach at this time, but I was in an ocean view room and could take it all in from my balcony. The sunsets from the beach are equally as beautiful as the sun sets over the pyramids of the Paradisus Cancun. If you are by the beach at night you can check out the stars. You do not get the city’s light pollution so you can see the constellations.

  1. Service

There is nothing worse than having to walk endlessly to the beach only to find that the nearest bar or food options are miles away from the beach. I would recommend springing for access to the Coco’S Beach Club. This exclusive area is centrally located, and the staff will truly take care of you. You can order food and drinks without having to leave your beach chair. The washrooms are also very close so you do not have to walk very far.

 

  1. The Physical Beauty

If you are looking for 78377049_2481774365397418_3078050722848178176_nwhite sand and turquoise waters than the Paradisus Cancun is for you. The powdery white sand doesn’t skald your feet as you walk along the seemingly endless beach to either side of the resort. The ocean itself is picturesque and breathtakingly beautiful. Be prepared for a photo shoot! The Caribbean side of Mexico has a bad reputation for sargassum, but at this resort there wasn’t even a trace of seaweed. As an added bonus, the resort has roped off beach areas. This means there were not very many venders pestering you on the beach, so you can really soak up the sun’s rays in peace and quiet.

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  1. Activities

Laying in the sun and reading a book can be a full-time job but sometimes you need a little extracurricular activity. Yoga is offered in the morning which can be a great way to start your day. While beach volleyball and soccer run periodically throughout the day. The waves along the beach are perfect for bodyboarding. If you are more of a thrill seeker you can pay to go parasailing or take a jet ski out for a rip.

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No matter what your beach preferences are there is something for everyone at the Paradisus Cancun.

Follow along as I check out a few other resorts in the area!

 

Stephanie’s Loving Le Blanc Spa Resort Los Cabos – Part 3

My final experience at the Le Blanc Spa Resort is the hotel’s namesake…. a visit to the spa! You can’t visit a spa resort without checking out the spa, right?

They have an entire floor dedicated to the spa and salon, and it’s relaxing from the moment you walk in. There are 25 treatment rooms, so you won’t have a problem getting an appointment for your preferred time. A bonus of staying at Le Blanc is you receive a $1500 USD resort credit, and up to $500 of that can be put towards the spa!

After quickly checking in with reception, you’ll be greeted with a warm neck wrap and a healthy juice. Your spa butler will then show you to the change rooms, where you’ll be assigned a locker and given time to change into your swimsuit.

You start your spa appointment with a trip through the hydrotherapy circuit. It is complimentary for all guests, even without a spa treatment. It’s recommended to arrive 60 to 90 minutes beforehand to enjoy all the sections. Starting off with a dry sauna, you’ll move into the ice room complete with chilled aloe vera (perfect after a day in the sun), then into the steam room with a mud mask and hair treatment, a cold and then warm shower, and finally a heated tile bed before you finish at the 3 pools. You take a drip in the warm pool first, then the hot tub and lastly the cold pool. It truly is a cold pool, and I didn’t last more than 5 seconds. It was surprisingly refreshing, however.

Your spa butler will collect you 10 minutes before your treatment so you can get dried off and ready. My massage was absolutely wonderful, and I was just about to fall asleep as it was wrapping up.

Whether you are looking for some adult R&R, the ultimate food experience, or a world class spa, the Le Blanc Spa Resort offers it all. I can’t wait to help you plan your visit here soon!

Ready to start planning your stay at the Le Blanc Spa Resort in Los Cabos?  You can reach me by calling 306-934-3400 or emailing stephanie@uniglobeyxe.com.   I’m back in the office on Thursday.

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Stephanie’s Loving Le Blanc Spa Resort Los Cabos – Part 2

Today we are talking food. I truly appreciate a good meal, and Le Blanc doesn’t disappoint. I don’t think I’ve been to a resort that has such amazing food options from around the globe. In less than 36 hours I’ve dined on Italian, Mexican, seafood, and Lebanese. The variety of food choices from all parts of the world is something that makes Le Blanc Spa Resort really stand out.

With 8 dining choices for only 373 rooms, you’ll never have to wait in line for a meal. Each location has its own head chef to make sure that the menu is curated to reflect each cuisine authentically. You’ll fall in love with the pasta choices at Blanc Italia, enjoy authentic Mexican chilaquiles and a great view on the open terrace of Blanc Ocean, or be treated to a unique and flavorful meal at the Lebanese restaurant Mezze.

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If you aren’t in the mood to leave the comfort of your bed, there is always the room service menu just a click away on the resort app. On Sunday I ordered a mid afternoon snack, which arrived in a record 23 minutes. The service is supreme.

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Room service in record time

With another 2 nights to go here, I hope I can find the time to enjoy the remainder of the dining venues. My waistband might not agree, but it’s hard to pass up such great food!

 

Stephanie’s Loving Le Blanc Spa Resort Los Cabos – Part 1

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Sunrise from the room

Good morning from the Le Blanc Spa Resort Los Cabos. I’m very excited to spend 4 nights here and to share some highlights with you.

I arrived Saturday afternoon, and Le Blanc surely gives an amazing first impression! Check-in was quick and painless, and I was escorted to my room by my butler! That’s right, each floor has a dedicated butler team to assist with all you’re needs. The butler went through the room with me, showing all the features such as the gorgeous soaker tub (that your butler will draw up for you), the fully stocked mini bar (complete with snacks) and the resort app (where you can order room service, aromatherapy, bath salts and more). I can truly say that anything you could want is just a quick call away.

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As I settle in, unpack (which your butler will do if you wish) and recover from a long day of travel, I can’t wait to explore the rest of this stunning resort. If its even half as stunning as the view from my room, I may never come home! Stay tuned as my journey unfolds…

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Ed’s Cruise from London to New York on the Silversea Whisper – Part 8

New York, New York – Oct 10

While we were disappointed that we had to leave Boston earlier than planned, what this meant in the end was that we arrived in New York around noon instead of during the night.  Yay…some extra time to discover New York.

Coming into New York, the weather co-operated with sunshine  as we all awaited that iconic welcoming symbol of freedom – the Statue of Liberty!   “The Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World” was a gift of friendship from the people of France to the United States and is recognized as a universal symbol of freedom and democracy. The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886.  It was designated as a National Monument in 1924.  Employees of the National Park Service have been caring for the colossal copper statue since 1933.

The New York skyline is so impressive as we sail into the Hudson to dock at Pier 88 right in the middle of Midtown, New York.  For all my golfing friends, the area surrounded by green netting is a golf driving range!

The tall tower in this picture is the Freedom Tower or One World Trade Center is the main building of the rebuilt World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan, New York City by the 9/11 memorial. One WTC is the tallest building in the United States, the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere, and the seventh-tallest in the world.

When we docked, we were right beside the Intrepid Carrier museum.  Launched in 1943, the former aircraft carrier USS Intrepid fought in World War II, surviving five kamikaze attacks and one torpedo strike. The ship later served in the Cold War and the Vietnam War. Intrepid also served as a NASA recovery vessel in the 1960s. It was decommissioned in 1974, and today is berthed on the Hudson River as the centerpiece of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

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Beside the Intrepid is the record-breaking plane—the Concorde Alpha Delta G-BOAD. The fastest Atlantic Ocean crossing by any Concorde occurred on February 7, 1996 and took only 2 hours, 52 minutes and 59 seconds. It looks absolutely tiny next to the carrier.

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Also, beside the Intrepid is the Submarine Growler.  Growler is the only American guided missile submarine open to the public. Growler offers visitors a firsthand look at life aboard a submarine and a close-up inspection of the once “top-secret” missile command center.

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Unfortunately, we don’t have much time in New York, so instead we opted to visit the 9/11 Memorial Museum.   The last time we were in New York, we visited the twin towers, still standing in their glory.  It was a somber experience to go to the site now.

The National September 11 Memorial is a tribute of remembrance and honor to the 2,977 people killed in the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center site, near Shanksville, Pa., and at the Pentagon, as well as the six people killed in the World Trade Center bombing in February 1993.

The Memorial’s twin reflecting pools are each nearly an acre in size and feature the largest man-made waterfalls in North America. The pools sit within the footprints where the Twin Towers once stood.

The names of every person who died in the 2001 and 1993 attacks are inscribed into bronze panels edging the Memorial pools, a powerful reminder of the largest loss of life resulting from a foreign attack on American soil and the greatest single loss of rescue personnel in American history.

This was an afternoon of filled with grief, tears, anger and emotional exhaustion.  Having said all that, the museum is extremely well done and not only shows the horrific event but honours all those that perished.  It is well worth everyone going to visit it if you have the opportunity.

That’s it for our Silversea experience and blog.  It was a truly wonderful experience and can highly recommend Silversea Cruises.  Given that their pricing includes large staterooms, butler service, fine dining, excellent wine and spirits and gratuities all included, it really is good value.

Thanks for following along.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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Ed’s Cruise from London to New York on the Silversea Whisper – Part 7

Boston – Oct 8/9

Boston is admired for its beautiful harbor, museums, food, Revolutionary history, and sports traditions, including the beloved Red Sox baseball team. Boston is also the cradle of the American Revolution, and sites from early American history are visible all around; a great way to see them and the city itself is by walking the 3-mile Freedom Trail, which winds among tight, Colonial-era street. Not far from the city are Lexington and Concord, where the American Revolution was born with the “shot heard ’round the world.”

We arrived late afternoon on October 8, and since this is our first time in “Beantown”, we were anxious to get off the trip and start exploring.  The ship provided a complimentary shuttle that dropped us off at the Aquarium but only a couple of blocks from where we wanted to go…Faneuil Hall Marketplace.  Four buildings – Faneuil Hall, Quincy Market, North Market and South Market – constitute Faneuil Hall Marketplace, with the oldest being Faneuil Hall. Built in 1742 and now located on the Freedom Trail, Faneuil Hall has had a long and important history in Massachusetts politics. Samuel Adams once stood here to push for resistance against the British, and abolitionists and suffragists have stood on their soapboxes here. In fact, this is where Jonathan Mayhew famously challenged the Sugar Act of 1764 by proclaiming, “no taxation without representation.” Since Mayhew’s declaration, the marketplace has expanded to include more than 100 shops and restaurants.

We spent our evening strolling through the market’s halls where we found various cuisines served in Quincy Market and a variety of souvenir shops surrounding the halls.

That night, upon returning to the ship, we were advised that we would be cutting our visit to Boston short given that the weather necessitated us leaving at 1PM instead of 5PM.  A number of people were disappointed as the tours they signed up for were cancelled.  However, we had opted for a Freedom Trail Walking Tour that finished by 12:30, so we were not affected.

Stretching 2½ miles, the Freedom Trail weaves past 16 of the city’s most historic sites, including Faneuil Hall Marketplace, the Paul Revere House and Old North Church. Taking in only some of the trail’s attractions requires our half a day (and some comfortable walking shoes) but with the guide’s commentary, we learned a lot of American history on the tour.

The following map might give you some idea of what we saw.

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We started at Boston Common and the State House.  The grounds of Boston Common started as a cow pasture in the mid-1600s. After a few years, overgrazing became a problem and the area was transformed into a British camp. After the Revolutionary War, the park became a popular locale for public speeches and rallies. Now, the Common is best known because of its status as the oldest public park in the country. You’ll also find a variety of activities and events, including theater and musical performances, hosted here throughout the year.  Right across the street was the State House.

Next stop was the Old Granary Burying Ground.  Established in 1660, this is the resting place for some of America’s revolutionary heroes including John Hancock, Samuel Adams and of course, the most famous, Paul Revere!

While there were several other historical stops along the way, some of the most interesting were the site of the “Boston Massacre”.  The Boston Massacre was a deadly riot that occurred on March 5, 1770, on King Street in Boston. It began as a street brawl between American colonists and a lone British soldier, but quickly escalated to a chaotic, bloody slaughter. The conflict energized anti-British sentiment and paved the way for the American Revolution.

When you think of Boston history, for me, two incidents come to mind…the Boston Tea Party and Paul Revere’s ride.  While we only saw the location of the Boston Tea Party from the bus, we did get to sea a couple of Paul Revere sites, including his house which still stands.  The house dating back to the late 1700’s gives you a glimpse of how houses looked in his time.

In the background of the Paul Revere statue, you can see the Old North Church.  Most people who know anything about American history have heard of Paul Revere’s famous midnight ride, when he rode through town to warn people about the arrival of British troops. Before heading off to Lexington, Revere gave orders at Old North Church. Robert Newman – the church’s sexton – and Captain John Pulling Jr. – the church’s vestryman – then climbed the steeple and held two lanterns as a signal (from Revere) that the British Regulars were indeed coming, but by sea.

The church itself, which is officially named Christ Church, is filled with beautiful relics from the past, including North America’s oldest set of change ringing bells and chandeliers brought in from England in the early 1700s. The pews have a long history as well; Pew No. 54 was reserved for the Revere family.

Along our way, there were some very old and famous pubs.  Check out the dates on some of these pictures…

Final stop before heading back to the ship…Mike’s Pastry.  Founded in 1946, Mike’s Pastry is located in Boston’s historic North End on Hanover Street. Michael Mercogliano (the “Mike” behind the famed Mike’s Pastry) created the one-of-a-kind cannoli that keeps loyal Bostonians and tourists coming from around the world to enjoy. Going to Mike’s has become a Boston tradition and we are told that even JFK would send for some of the famous cannoli when in town.  We sure enjoyed ours!

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Next stop is New York.  Since we had to leave Boston early, this means that we will arrive in New York early which will give us time to see some of the sights there too!  That’s a bonus.  Thanks for reading along, next and last blog will be about our short stay in New York.

Ed’s Cruise from London to New York on the Silversea Whisper – Part 6

Halifax – Oct 8

Named one of the Top 10 Global DESTINATIONS ON THE RISE in TripAdvisor’s 2018 Travelers’ Choice Awards – everyone’s talking about Halifax.  There’s just something perfectly endearing about Halifax.

I think it’s the bustling waterfront and the fact that the city is steeped in history at every turn. Whatever it is, Halifax has come a long way since its early days as a trading hub on the Atlantic, and has been charming visitors with its east coast hospitality ever since.  There are craft breweries and trendy restaurants and bistros galore, especially around the harbor area.

We honeymooned in Halifax and Nova Scotia 39 years ago and it has really changed.  We started our visit with a walk down the lengthy boardwalk along the harbor.  It reminded us a lot of Vancouver’s waterfront with it’s plethora of sailboats, restaurants and bars.  We were lucky to have a warm sunny day which made the walk most enjoyable.  The only issue we had was that Karen was stung by a wasp on the neck which proved to be very painful.  Thankfully she is not allergic, and we continued our walk.

The last steps portal is in memory of over 350,00 of troops called to action during the course of WWI that sailed away from this port.  Some 67,000 never returned.  For these heroes, these would have been the last steps on Canadian soil before they sailed away and watched the Port of Halifax disappear behind them.

Then up the hill and there perched atop the grassy hillock looming over town, is this star-shaped fort that played a key role in Halifax’s founding. Construction on the Citadel Hill National Historic began in 1749; the current citadel is the fourth, built from 1818 to 1861. The grounds and battlements inside the fort are open year-round, and we could visit the barracks, the guards’ room, the signal post, the engineer’s store and the gunpowder magazines.   The view from the top is amazing but the landscape has certainly changed as I remember.

At the pier is housed the Halifax Seaport Farmer’s Market.  Although it has operated in several locations since its inception in 1750, what’s now known as the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market (in its present location since 2010) is North America’s longest continuously operating market. With more than 250 local vendors from a province that prides itself on strong farm-to-table and maritime traditions.

Next stop was the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21. There’s an argument that this dockside museum is Canada’s most important institution. Between 1928 and 1971, Pier 21 was the Canadian version of the USA’s Ellis Island, where all prospective immigrants arrived. More than a million people passed through these red-brick halls, and it’s an emotional experience to walk through the very same doorways where refugees from across the globe began new lives.

Our hope was to get some information on the immigration of Karen’s Grandparents on her father’s side.  With the help of their wonderful and knowledgeable staff, we were able to locate the date of departure July 29, 1927 from Liverpool on a ship called the Megantic.  We were able to get a copy of the page of the ship’s passenger’s list showing their information as well as a picture of their ship and port of arrival information.  I think that actually made our stop in Halifax very special!  In looking at the information, their ship was half the Gross Tonnage of our ship and while our ship holds a mere 382 passengers, their ship held 1660 passengers!

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Our final stop of the day was at the Alexander Keith’s Brewery.  I had expected a chance to sit and sample some of their wares (for the appropriate cost) but their store front was very anticlimactic.  They wanted approximately $26 per person for a tour and perhaps that included some sampling, but I just wasn’t that interested.

That’s it for our stop in Halifax.  Thanks for reading along.  Our next port is Boston and we are looking forward to experiencing at least a small part of BeanTown.

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