Apple Vacations Announces New Non-Stop Vacation Flights from Detroit to Jamaica

Good news!  Apple Vacations has announced some new non-stop vacation flights for next Spring from Detroit to Jamaica on AirTran Airways.  They will also continue their non-stop charters to Cancun and Punta Cana.  See below chart for exact dates and days of week.  Contact Island Time Travel for more information.
Apple Vacations new Jamaica Flights from Detroit
Related: Apple Vacations Launches Flights to Jamaica from Lansing, Mich.
Related: All-Inclusive Couples Resorts Awarded Apple Vacations’ Coveted Golden Apple Awards for Exceptional Consumer Ratings
Related: Is an all inclusive resort right for your vacation?

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Funjet Anywhere Under the Sun – Everything is On Sale!

Everything, and they mean EVERYTHING is ON SALE!  Get ready to Funjet around the world, because everything is on sale! Whatever you’re looking for – sun and sand, history and culture, shopping and nightlife, nature and exploration, or something else completely – your perfect vacation is waiting. Funjet Aruba, Zihuatanejo, and anyplace in between, because it’s all on sale!

Booking Window: 5/4/12 – 5/24/12
Travel Window: 5/4/12 – 12/15/12

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Funjet Vacations Sale

Secrets Resorts — There’s an app for that!

Secrets St. James and Secrets Wild Orchid

AMResorts (Zoëtry Wellness & Spa Resorts, and Secrets, Dreams, Now, and Sunscape Resorts & Spas) announced today the launch of its new, interactive Unlimited-Connectivity® app. Now available for the company’s most recently opened properties, Secrets Vallarta Bay and Now Amber Puerto Vallarta, the innovative app will be rolled out to all AMResorts brands and resorts by the end of 2012. The free digital application developed by AMResorts and Telmex, a world leader in communications, is accessible for mobile download to iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Android, Blackberry phones.

The app allows guests to stay connected and communicate with family and friends back home using the app-to-app calls feature to call local and international (U.S. and Canada) phones and send messages over the hotel’s Wi-Fi network without incurring any international cell phone roaming charges. Guests also can create user profiles using their email, Facebook or Twitter accounts to contact staff directly, tailor personal deal preferences, book spa appointments, reserve excursions and be just a click away from information about dining, amenities, resort activities, local attractions and much more. Users can register the app with their room number, allowing them to instantly view their folio and request hotel services.

The easy-to use, cost-saving app registers as a room extension so guests can send and receive calls throughout the property as if they were in their room.

AMResorts also is introducing a new AMResorts Collection iPad app, an interactive information resource and travel planning tool. A Secrets Brand Collection will be available for download on iTunes. Apps for the company’s other four brands will be accessible by the end of 2012. The iPad app will allow users to input their travel needs and interests and access specific resort recommendations based on their preferences. It is designed to help couples, families and adults plan and book their future vacations with AMResorts, as well as enable agents and planners to quickly identify the property that best fits their client or group function.

2011 in Review

AMResorts enjoyed an exciting 2011 with the celebration of its 10th anniversary milestone, a new brand introduction, entry into new destinations, five resort openings and the continued growth of its diverse portfolio. The company closed the year with 26 resorts and almost 10,000 rooms in Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Jamaica.

In November 2011, AMResorts re-launched the Sunscape Resorts & Spas brand with the opening of Sunscape Dorado Pacifico Ixtapa – its first resort in this popular Mexico destination. Ixtapa is the seventh Mexico destination to have an AMResorts property, demonstrating its success and confidence in this market.

Also last November, AMResorts celebrated the official opening of the adults-only Secrets Marquis Los Cabos. The opening marked the brand’s entry into the popular vacation destination of Los Cabos, Mexico.

The December 2011 debut of the adults-only, 399-suite Secrets Huatulco Resort & Spa became Secrets’ first foray into the growing vacation destination of Huatulco in Mexico’s Pacific region and is AMResorts’ second resort in the area, following Dreams Huatulco.

AMResorts continued growth in the Dominican Republic with the debut of two new Punta Cana properties in May 2011: Secrets Royal Beach Punta Cana and Now Larimar Punta Cana. These properties are joining the company’s four additional resorts in the destination: Dreams Punta Cana, Dreams Palm Beach, Dreams La Romana, and Zoëtry Agua Punta Cana. The 2013 debut of the Gems at Cap Cana complex, a $400 million development and the company’s largest project to-date, will continue AMResorts’ expansion in the Caribbean.

Looking Forward

AMResorts has two developments underway in Puerto Vallarta, Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta and Now Amber Puerto Vallarta, set to open in April 2012. The $175 million USD project introduces the first Secrets and Now Resorts & Spas properties to the popular destination and is responsible for creating 902 direct jobs. The 602-room, two-resort complex represents Puerto Vallarta’s first new construction hotels in almost a decade.

Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta will offer adults an extra measure of romance and sensuality in a beautiful beachfront setting. Guests will be welcomed by 271 elegantly-appointed rooms and suites with 24-hour concierge and room services; multiple gourmet, a la carte restaurants and lounges serving premium beverages; endless day and evening activities; and full-service spa and fitness facilities.
With 331 oversized guest rooms and suites with ocean views and private terraces, Now Amber Puerto Vallarta will cater to couples, friends and families. The resort offers amenities such as wireless internet access, flat screen TVs with surround sound systems, daily refreshed mini bars, 24-hour room and concierge services, multiple gourmet dining offerings and full-service spa and fitness facilities. The resort will foster a sense of understated luxury and comfort, and has received the Amber gemstone symbol as a reflection of the inviting rich sands along Banderas Bay.

The opening of the newly built, 495-room Secrets The Vine Cancun is scheduled for August 2012 in Cancun’s popular Zona Hotelera. The newly built Secrets The Vine is located on the golden Yucatan Peninsula coastline. The resort features 495 luxurious guest rooms, all with ocean views, private balconies, Italian porcelain floors, and teak wood furnishings. Its lobby celebrates fine wine in both its design and menu offerings with a designated wine tasting area for guests, the Enoteca (wine cellar). Featuring a Mexican handcrafted wood table with seating for up to 30 guests, a unique wine wall housing as many as 3000 varieties of wine, and sommelier-lead tastings of some of the world’s finest wine collections, the Enoteca promises guests a rich and relaxing wine tasting experience.

By 2013, AMResorts is anticipating a portfolio of 35 resorts, more than 13,500 rooms and entry into new destinations including Costa Rica.

Source/credit: AMResorts

Related: The New Secrets Marquis Los Cabos adults only resort
Related: Secrets St. James Montego Bay Trip Report
Related: Two Secrets Resorts in Jamaica Earn Coveted AAA Four Diamond Award
Related: Secrets Resorts & Spas
Related: Secrets St. James and Wild Orchid Montego Bay
Related: New Secrets Adults Only All Inclusive Resort in Cancun
Related: Secrets Resorts & Spas Celebrates Opening of Adults Only Secrets Huatulco
Also see: Sandals Launches Interactive iPad App

Save Money with a Mystery Vacation

Secrets St. James and Wild Orchid Montego Bay Jamaica

If you can be a little flexible regarding your resort and room type, mystery hotel deals are a great way to save money on your vacation to the Caribbean or Mexico.  With such a program, you save money, but you allow the resort chain or vacation package provider to select which exact resort you will be staying at.

I have done this type of program three times in the past and was very satisfied with the results.  While it’s no longer offered by Club Med, many years ago we used the Club Med “Wild Card” program.  We knew we would be spending a week, with charter airfare included from either Chicago or New York City, at one of the Club Meds in Mexico or the Caribbean.  The first time we did this program, we got assigned to the Club Med Cancun, which at the time was adults only.  We liked the program so much we did it again the following year and this time got sent to the Club Med in Huatulco (now Las Brisas).

My third time using such a program was the SuperClubs Resorts “Super Surprise” program.   We knew we would be staying at one of their resorts in Jamaica.  We were sent to Hedonism III (now the Royal Decameron Fun Caribbean) and had a great time.

This post will be a “work in progress” while I continue my research into which resort chains and tour operators offer such packages.

Apple Vacations

Apple Vacations offers their “Square Deal Program” which guarantees you a room at an all-inclusive resort in a pre-specified category based on Apple’s rating system, e.g. “6 Apple”, “5 Apple,” etc.

Couples Resorts

Couples Resorts offers the Secret Rendezvous program for their four couples-only resorts in Jamaica.  With this program, the resort you’ll be staying at remains a ‘secret’ until 7 days prior to your arrival.  3 night minimum  stay is required.  Savings off published rates is from 41% off to 51% off depending on the time of year.

MLT Vacations

MLT offers two types of Mystery Deals, offering incredible savings:

  • The first option provides customers with the brand name of the hotel in their select destination, but not the exact hotel
  • The second option provides customers with the rating of the hotel in their select destination, but not the hotel name, or the specific location in the destination

Funjet Vacations

Funjet Fun For Less

Funjet Vacations offers a mystery hotel program they call their Fun For Less program.  You’ll stay at one of Funjet’s best hotels in Mexico and the Caribbean, but won’t find out where you’re staying until 7-10 days prior to departure.

  • Huge Savings!  Get the best deal by booking a mystery hotel — you are guaranteed a hotel with a star rating that’s equal to or greater than the advertised rating
  • Multiple-room bookings on the same reservation are GUARANTEED to be placed at the same hotel for bookings made 10+ days prior to departure.
  • Incredible product lineup in Mexico and Caribbean destinations
  • The actual hotel name is provided 7-10 days before departure
  • For some of the deals, Funjet will tell you the resort chain
  • Note that no special room requests are allowed and rooms with disability access cannot be guaranteed.  Rooms will be in the lowest category.

Vacation Express announces summer non-stop “Champagne Flights” to Jamaica, Cancun, and Punta Cana

Update (May 18, 2012): Vacation Express is extending this seasonal Sunwing service from Cincinnati.  The Cincinnati flights will now be year round service, same destinations, same days of the week. No breaks in the service , no blackout weeks to remember, every week and every month! Now open for sale through October 2013.

Punta Cana leaves on Fridays!
Jamaica leaves on Saturdays!
Cancun leaves on Sundays!

Vacation Express

Vacation Express has announced their schedule of value/charter flights (via SunWing Airlines) for Summer through Fall of 2012. These flights will allow for amazing priced packages from Atlanta, Cincinnati, and Nashville to Cancun, Jamaica, and Punta Cana. Vacation Express offers many all-inclusive and adults only hotels.

from Atlanta:

to Cancun: 3,4, or 7 night vacation packages leaving on Fridays or Mondays (May 25–October 29)
to Punta Cana: 7 night vacation packages leaving on Saturdays (May 26–October 27)

from Cincinnati:

to Cancun: 7 night vacation packages leaving on Sundays (May 27–October 28)
to Jamaica: 7 night vacation packages leaving on Saturdays (May 26–October 27)
to Punta Cana: 7 night vacation packages leaving on Fridays (May 25–October 26)

from Nashville:

to Cancun: 7 night vacation packages leaving on Saturdays (May 26–October 27)
to Jamaica: 7 night vacation packages leaving on Sundays (May 27–October 28)

Sunwing Airlines

Vacation Express, based in Atlanta, is one of the largest tour operators in the southeast United States and has been in business for over 22 years. For more information or a quote, contact Island Time Travel at info@islandtimetravel.com.

Source: Vacation Express

Related: Funjet Vacations Announces 2012 Charter Flights to Jamaica from St. Louis

Top 10 Best All-Inclusive Resorts in the World

Two Iberostar Grand resorts have been rated in the Top 10 all-inclusive resorts in the world, according to Tripadvisor.  Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso in the Riviera Maya area was ranked #1, and the Iberostar Grand Bavaro in Punta Cana was ranked #9.  Also represented in the Top 10 is another one of our favorite resort brands here at Island Time Travel—Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun was ranked #7.   Secrets Maroma Beach was also ranked the #4 in the Top 10 Hotels for Romance in the World. 

All three are all luxurious, adults only resorts.

Here is a link to the page on Trip Advisor: Travelers’ Choice 2011 Best Hotels in the World

To book a trip, contact us here at Island Time Travel or click here to book directly online.

Some new all-inclusive resorts are opening in Riviera Maya and Punta Cana

Riu Palace Bavaro

Punta Cana:  Riu Palace Bavaro opens on December 2, 2001.

Riviera Maya, Mexico: Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Esmerelda (for families, opens on November 30, 2011) and Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Perla (for adults only, opens November 15, 2011)

          

 

Also see: Cruises Are Wonderful, but All-Inclusive Resorts Provide Stress Free Vacations