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Adventures by Disney – Italy

Do you have Bucket List travel dreams? I sure do – and I was able to check a big one off my list after experiencing Italy with Adventures by Disney.

Any time you travel outside of the country, it can be a bit intimidating. Disney takes that fear away, as they meet you right outside of Customs at the airport. They even had my luggage ready for me!

We were whisked away to our 5-star hotel, The Gran Melia in Rome, where we met our 2 Adventure Guides. Every Adventures by Disney Tour includes 2 Adventures Guides – a local expert, and an American guide. Together they make the entire experience seamless.

Our tour started right away, with special backstage passes at the Coliseum. We were allowed onto the actual stage where the gladiators fought. It was incredible!

All along the way, you are given backstage, front-of-the-line, VIP passes everywhere you go. The highlight of Rome for me was getting a special after-hours, private tour of the Vatican Museum, which concluded with a private tour of the Sistine Chapel. And Shhhhhh don’t tell anyone, but they even let us take pictures (normally this is forbidden!).

After Rome, we took off for Tuscany, which is the most beautiful place I’ve ever been to. Don’t get freaked out by being on a bus – it is an AWESOME bus, and the Guides do a great job of keeping everyone entertained on the longer stretches. Although, there are hardly any long rides. Everything is always broken up with more Adventures. For example, on our drive to Tuscany, we stopped for lunch at the medieval town of Orvietto and had a beautiful lunch on the top of the countryside.

Checking in to our Tuscan Hotel was a dream. They had a private courtyard waiting for us, with delicious food and prosecco. We all nibbled on cheese and enjoyed our wine while our Adventure Guides got us checked in to the hotel.

The highlight of my entire Tuscan Adventure was the day spent at Sara’s Farm. We received a special tour, met some of Sara’s lovely family members, enjoyed a private pasta-making class with Sara, and wined and dined outdoors while enjoying a delicious lunch and wine tasting, all while overlooking the rolling hills of Tuscany. It was just delightful!

Venice began with a Gondola ride, which was made even more special with the addition of a singer and accordion player, who were right in my Gondola. It was so beautiful!

If you want to feel completely immersed in the culture, and experience everything like a VIP rock star – Adventures by Disney is the best!

A closer look at El Dorado Maroma Palafitos

Let’s take a closer look at the Palafitos, Mexico’s first over-the-water bungalows located on one of the best beaches in the Riviera Maya.

Palafitos-Overwater Bungalows are a cluster of 30 exclusive, private bungalows sitting right over the turquoise waters of Maroma Beach. Every single facet of these exclusive suites is designed to highlight the surrounding beauty.

Your private bungalow will give you direct ladder access to the ocean, and glass floors are just the beginning of overwater living. Watch the sun rise and set right from your private deck. Take a dip within your private infinity pool, offering picture-perfect views of the sparkling sea. Rinse off within your private outdoor shower. And let your personal Majordomo take care of the rest, as you relax in absolute bliss.

Each bungalow features:

  • Glass bottom floors
  • Private infinity pool
  • Direct ladder access to the ocean
  • Romantic outdoor shower
  • Indoor whirlpool tub for two
  • Oversized deck with wooden lounge chairs

Enjoy exclusive access to Overwater Grill & Wine BarFeaturing two glass-floor dining rooms with spectacular views of the surrounding sea, and succulent, ocean-inspired dishes this restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Exclusive for Palafitos-Overwater Bungalows guests, this dining experience will leave you in awe.

 

 

Nickelodeon Hotel in Punta Cana

Did you know there is an All-Inclusive Family Resort in the Caribbean where you can play in a water park, float along a lazy river, and meet all of your favorite Nickelodeon characters?

Let me introduce you to the Nickelodeon Hotel in Punta Cana!

Located in the heart of the Caribbean, Nickelodeon Hotel has it all.

Aqua Nick

Enjoy winding water slides, splash pads, spray grounds, and a lazy river ride. Join the fun with a Nick Live! Poolside, where the mess hits the deck in an interactive game shows where guests are pulled right into the action. Experience Nickelodeon’s ultimate honor during the daily Mass Sliming events, where everyone is welcome to join the free-flowing celebration. Or sit for a unique family photo under the Slimulator. Get ready to get messy! 

Character Central

Enjoy selfie-friendly moments and surprise visits with your favorite Nickelodeon personalities at Character Central.

Just Kidding

Part clubhouse, part artist’s studio, Just Kidding is a hub for free play as well as more structured activities for families. You’ll find a mega ball pit, two-story slide, and a whole lot of do-it-yourself Nickelodeon fun, from arts and craft classes to science experiments, along with daily, supervised activities for kids 4 to 12 years old. Plus, you never know when your favorite character will stop by!

Swim-Up Suites

Upgrade to a Swim-Up Suite and enjoy direct pool access from your terrace!

 

Universal Orlando is Open!

Universal Orlando officially reopened on June 3, and the feedback from guests has been excellent! Everything is clean, organized, and safe. Guests are having a great time, enjoying the parks with significantly lower crowds than you would normally find in mid-July.

A few of our own Travel Planners here at Must Love Travel were able to visit Universal with their families since the parks reopened. Having our Team Members there has given us an inside look at what’s really going on.

Check out this video where we discuss EVERYTHING, such as the hotels, pools, parks, transportation, attractions, characters, dining, and more!

Travel News: Royal Caribbean Group’s Healthy Sail Panel

Royal Caribbean is excited to announce the establishment of Royal Caribbean Group’s Healthy Sail Panel — a team of the best minds and leaders in public health, biosecurity, epidemiology, hospitality, and maritime operations.

This diverse team has been enlisted to develop recommendations and guide the cruise industry forward with unprecedented standards in response to COVID-19. Their combined expertise will help reinforce current safety procedures onboard ships, create new ones, and ensure our vacation experience.

Their collective efforts will be shared across the cruise industry, as well as other industries that may benefit from their findings — because we’re all in this together.

Why We Vacation


Often times, the destination of our vacation is not as important as the travelers we spend it with. Time away from the hustle and bustle is time together with family and friends, allowing us to form deeper connections with people who enrich our lives.

As travel professionals, we love to help families and groups find the ideal setting that lets them connect and see the world in a brand-new way. We surround you with like-minded travelers, helping you form new connections and make new friends, and we introduce you to amazing guides and friendly locals when possible. Travel is all about that human touch, which is why booking travel through a human produces more authentic and life-changing experiences.

That’s why we vacation — Contact our expert advisors today to connect with those who matter most.

Nickelodeon Punta Cana

 

Last week some of our Must Love Travel team spent the week in Punta Cana learning about some of the amazing resorts and properties this beautiful destination has to offer! So many resorts stood out to us! Today I am excited to share with you some details about Nickelodeon Punta Cana.

 

 

This property is a Karisma Resorts. Karisma is a wonderful gourmet all-inclusive resort brand. The Nickelodeon Punta Cana is one of their newest properties. This resort is themed to all things Nickelodeon!

 

 

 

I was wowed by this great resort! Given the name Nickelodeon, I was expecting this resort to be very kid-oriented. Which it absolutely is! This resort is a paradise for kids with exciting activities for them and fun touches from some of their favorite Nickelodeon shows! However, what I didn’t expect was how much was also available for adults which would make this resort a great pick even for couples or families without young children.

 

 

The resort has an on-sight water park which is massive and full of exciting family activities! Additionally, you can enjoy the breathtaking beaches and relaxing pools! The restaurants here are all so well themed. We got to sample some of the food from a few of these dining locations and everything we tried was delicious! There are even night clubs and bars for adults. Adults will love the gourmet food offerings that this resort provides. And of course there are many family friendly options for everyone!

 

 

The rooms here are very sleek and inviting. The Nickelodeon theme is present but not in your face. There are some subtle touches of Nickelodeon characters and pops of Nickelodeon’s iconic orange color. There are room types to fit whatever you might be looking for! From standard hotel rooms, to suites and even pool super villas!

 

 

 

After visiting this resort, I highly recommend it for all that it has to offer. Contact your Must Love Travel Planner today to plan your next vacation!

 

Why You Should Vacation at an All-Inclusive Resort!

 

We all know that when you start to think about your next vacation it can be overwhelming. You want to make sure that you are finding just the right destination for your traveling party and you also want to make sure that you get the best value for your money.  First you will want to contact your professional travel planner here at Must Love Travel!  Your planner will be able to take all the stress away from planning your trip and will save you so much time in trying to find that perfect place and the best deal.  Let’s talk about a great vacation, and that would be an All-Inclusive Resort!  Let’s highlight why an All-Inclusive vacation can be right for you!

 

 

– All-Inclusive vacations are a great way to save money.  There are so many choices; which leads to great deals. We as travel planners know all the new promotions that are available.  With an All-Inclusive there will be no additional cost to you.  Once you budget your vacation you know that all food and drinks are included.  The only extra cost would be up to you if you ad on an excursion.

 

 

– With an All–Inclusive resort you feel like royalty! The wonderful staff makes it apparent that you don’t have to work at all! You are on your vacation and they strive to make everything perfect for you! This means bringing you room service, taking care of your luggage. The staff is always happy to help so that you can relax and enjoy your stay.

 

 

– There are many All-Inclusive resorts to suite your needs.  From 5-star luxury resorts, couples resorts or budget and family friendly alternatives.  We will be able to find you the current deals for the All-Inclusive that fits your needs as well as give you recommendations for the resort that would best fit your interest!

 

 

-At an All-Inclusive each resort has its own entertainment and facilities to keep you as relaxed or as busy as you choose to be! You can spend your time by the pool or catching some sun on the beach. Or you can fill your days with adventurous excursions and resort activities! OR… a little mix of both! There is something for everyone!

 

 

Recently some of our Must Love Travel Planners got the opportunity to visit some of the AM Resorts in Punta Cana!  On this Island they had many resorts and each was tailored to fit a certain demographic and some fit many demographics. There are resorts for couples, friends traveling for fun and family friendly resorts with so many activities to do at each.  So when planning your next vacation you should consider an All-Inclusive and we will help you find what is best for your travel needs!

 

Road Trip From Orlando to Fort Lauderdale to Board the Celebrity Infinity for my Very First Cruise!

 

This past November Must Love Travel took a company trip aboard the beautiful Celebrity Infinity! We had a wonderful time filled with new learning experiences and fellowship! For me this was my very first cruise EVER! I was filled with excitement and my experienced Must Love Travel Planner friends were with me every step of the way to show me the ropes and make me a cruising pro!

 

 

For me and a few of my fellow Must Love Travel team members our journey began in Orlando Florida! A group of us had flown into Orlando to spend a few days at Walt Disney World pre-cruise. We then woke up VERY early the day of our Celebrity cruise to rent a van and have a road trip down to Fort Lauderdale where we would board the ship! The road trip festivities began with packing the car with the luggage of 6 travel professionals! We packed it to the brim but got everything to fit just right!

 

 

 

We then hit the road! As someone who has vacationed to Florida for all of my life this was actually my first time venturing to south Florida! It was really cool to take in the sights along the way of a new part of my favorite state! We shared a TON of laughs along the way!

 

Once we arrived in Fort Lauderdale we turned in the rental car and caught the shuttle to the port right across the street. After checking in I had the moment I had been waiting for, boarding the ship for the first time! It was an incredible feeling to step aboard and take in the beauty of the Celebrity Infinity!

 

 

We made our way to the buffet to enjoy lunch and got to meet up with some of our other co-workers. They made the announcement that the staterooms were ready and I went up to check out my room!  It was a very nice and comfortable room and my favorite part as the lovely veranda were I enjoyed many beautiful views as we sailed.

You can watch the adventure in our new YouTube Video!

 

 

Contact your Must Love Travel Planner today to plan your next adventure!

Taking a Trip with Friends

Have you ever traveled with friends or a group of people? Many people enjoy traveling with other families, couples or a group of friends. Our Travel Agency embarked on its annual event this week. A group of over 20 travel professionals set sail on the beautiful Celebrity Infinity out of Fort Lauderdale.

This trip on the Infinity is full of opportunities to learn and fellowship from each other. As travel professionals, we are always looking for opportunities to learn and experience new products. Celebrity Cruises is a great option for many. From couples, families and multigenerational trips this can be a great option.

This is the first time I have sailed with a group of friends other than my family. Traveling with a group of people who have a similar interest is so fun. During the days we typically go our own ways and each evening we gather to share our experiences for the day. Each day provides opportunities to get to know the others on a greater level. A group trip provides for a new or even a renewed friendship with others.

When traveling with a group of friends you can go your own ways each day and come together in the evening. During the evening gatherings, you can share your experiences of the day and enjoy being together. Traveling with a group can be very rewarding.

If you have a group you want to travel with please let your travel professional know. They can help you plan and coordinate the entire trip.

Secrets Akumal

This week I had the privilege along with one of our Platinum agents to represent our company at the Mark Travel 500 Club Platinum and Gold Reward Trip. We are staying at the Secrets Akumal, Riviera Maya, Mexico. Akumal is a small beachfront tourist location about 62 miles south of Cancun between Playa del Carmen and Tulum. It is perfect for snorkeling and swimming with the turtles. In fact, in Mayan, Akumal means, “place of turtles”.

Secrets Resorts and Spa properties are adults only and a perfect escape in unlimited luxury. Secrets Akumal has a beautiful white sand beach and luxury lounge chairs and plenty of sun and shade. The resort hosts three beautiful pools, one on the beach, one in the middle of the resort and my personal favorite a nice quiet pool very Zen-like. Both the beach and pools have wait staff to keep you refreshed and nourished. They have endless daytime activities and fantastic night time entertainment. As you walk around the resort you are surrounded by exotic natural beauty.

The luxury resort accommodations are non-smoking suites, each with a stunning view and some with direct swim-out access. There is a private furnished balcony for those early morning coffee or late night star gazing. There is a whirlpool for two, daily refreshed mini-bar, free wi- fi and international calling to the US and Canada. The Preferred Club Suites offer additional amenities as well such as a preferred club lounge. These are just a few things the suites offer.

There are 6 gourmet a la carte restaurants, buffet and a cafe and grill with no reservations required. Throughout the resort there are 6 bars with wonderful staff to take care of you. Of course you will not want to miss the Secrets Spa by Pevonia. It is 18,000 feet of pure luxury. We took the opportunity to indulge in the hydrotherapy and it was an amazing experience.

The events and wedding team here do a fantastic job! Our first night they hosted a Garden Party that was just amazing. Desserts hanging on tree swings, chandeliers, and entertainment. We also saw a wedding yesterday and they did a fantastic job. They try to only have one wedding a day, which is rare at most all-inclusive resorts. You could tell the bride and her guests were truly pampered.

Secrets Akumal is a perfect choice for a romantic getaway or even a girls spa getaway!

Moments to Take your Breath Away – Colmar Pocket

Everyone once in a while you take a vacation and end up in a destination that just takes your breath away. This is how I felt a few weeks ago at one of the stops on our Viking River cruise on the Rhine river. We had not planned to take the optional excursion for that day, Colmar in World War II Museum and Memorial, but after talking with several of the other guests on the ship we decided it was a must see and I am so glad we made the decision.

Colmar is a fairytale village in Alsace, France near the border with Germany. You may have heard it referred to as Alsace Lorraine as it switches hands between German and France many times during the World Wars I and II. This area is filled with miles of vineyards that we learned at one time became infected with a diseased bug that was native to the region, so they had to replant with new vines and they all came from the Napa Valley in CA, USA! So literally we have our USA roots growing in this area of France!

As soon as we rounded the corner, we were immersed in the historic old town filled with cobblestone streets lined with amazing buildings reminiscent of what you have seen in photographs from the early Renaissance. Timbered houses and the Gothic 13th Century, Eglise Saint-Martin Church which is located on central Place de la Cathedrale transported us into our own fairytale. The flower boxes filled enhanced the charm of the private homes. Since we were visiting the Colmar Pocket Memorial Museum, we walked the cobblestone streets and allowed ourselves to imagine living in this little village filled with rich history and charm.

What was especially moving was listening to the tour guide share the experiences of our American and French soldiers and we drove through the Colmar Pocket to the US War Memorial and French National War Cemetery on Mt. Sigolsheim. She discussed the battle as war raged to free France. Three months of fighting took place as these allied forces pushed the Germans to retreat.

We ended our day’s journey at the Audie Murphy Memorial, as we honored one soldier’s heroic stand. We learned that Audie was the most decorated US soldier in WWII history. He was born in Texas in 1925 and is known to have killed 240 German soldiers, and earned 33 awards and medals including three Purple Hearts and one Medal of Honor.

I was especially taken back when I saw our American Flag flying high upon this memorial and the honor that was paid to our American Soldiers.

I hope all of you have a chance to experience those moments that take your breath away even if you happen upon them last minute.

The People of the Destination

Often times, traveling to new destinations create lasting memories for you and those you are with. I can remember my first time outside the United States, going to Paradise Island in the Bahamas. I was so excited to be going outside the country I failed to realize it was only 184 miles east of Miami.


Making memories is one of the reasons I got into this business. As I have traveled to new destinations I have realized that not only are memories made, relationships are built with people of that locale. Many times, the people are who make the destination. The beautiful beaches of the Caribbean, the monuments in Washington, D.C. and many theme parks of Orlando are all amazing. Without the people, your experience would be much different.

On a recent trip to Mexico, I was struck by the amazing people. They were all so gracious, loving and welcoming. Returning home I kept thinking about the people an less about the resorts I was there to see. Clearly, they made an impression on me.

As you travel the world I encourage you to get to know the people along the way. You never know when a simple conversation will make a lasting impression. The amazing poet Maya Angelou once said:

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Wherever you want to go we can get you there. Along the way do not forget the people. #peoplefirst

Building Relationships

Recently I was reminded of the definition of a relationship; “a connection among people which they do things together in a productive fashion. A strong relationship occurs when the group outperforms what the individuals themselves can do.” I just love this! At Must Love Travel Group, relationships are a part of our company culture. We have built strong relationships with our team, with suppliers and our clients.

Our team works many hours behind the scenes to discuss opportunities for professional development and how they can best serve their clients. We have various learning channels such as webinars conducted by our suppliers, onsite education programs and conferences, weekly calls and interoffice correspondence. It is our goal as a company to be ready to work with our clients to book them in the perfect location. Building relationships within our team indeed makes us stronger as we learn and grow together with each other in mind.

Our management team has spent years building relationships with the suppliers that provide our clients with out of this world vacation experiences. Such partners as Disney Destinations and Universal Orlando have provided us opportunities to send our clients to great immersive family destinations that have created thousands of memories. Other partners such as Karisma Resorts, Sandals and Beaches and other all-inclusive partners, allow us to offer wonderful beach vacations, honeymoons, weddings and more to our clients. And we will not want to forget the cruise lines like Disney Cruise, Princess Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruises, that have taken our clients across the globe in exploration to not only warm destinations but Alaska, Europe, Asia and more!

Our clients, YOU! Nothing can be more fulfilling to us than building relationships with our clients. You may say a relationship with a travel planner? Yes! Our relationship with our clients provides them with unlimited access to the world! We get to know you over the many years of planning your trips that we become not only people who book your trips, but we know and care about your family, watch the kids grow, share the memories of time away from work and your hectic lives. We know what hotels you like, what type of activities the family is looking for, what food you like and don’t like, and the list goes on. Client loyalty is important to us and we work hard to build and maintain those relationships.

I am sure all of you have relationships that you value, such as your hairdresser, realtor, financial advisor, etc. I hope you have one of our travel planners on your list! If you have been reading our blog for some time, and are not connected with one of our travel planners or have never used one, send me a note so we can get you connected! You don’t have to be traveling soon, just get started with the relationship! I can guarantee it will be one you will cherish for many years to come!

River Cruising Down the Rhine River in Germany

Today I am sharing with you as I am sailing down the Rhine River in Germany! We are on the 5th day of our adventure aboard the Viking Ingiv. We have had a fabulous time visiting the Black Forest, Colmar, Heidelberg and today heading toward Kolblenz. This is bar far the most beautiful part of the journey! I often see the debate – do we start in Basel or Amsterdam – I would definitely say Basel. Save the best for the end of the trip!

Passing by Castles, beautiful homes, WWII train tressels designed to look like castles ( false facade) so that the opposition would not notice where the Germans were hiding. The river is unusually low, however, our Captian grew up on the river and assured us we would maneuver upstream just fine! Now our cruise director is sharing a fairytale of the 7 virgins who remain the rock until a strong handsome man comes to rescue them. The sharing of information is something I have enjoyed so much. The history and stories have made it so interesting.

Sailing on a river cruise is much different than an ocean cruise as you can imagine. The advertising we see on TV doesn’t really do it justice as the intimate nature of the cruise has so many wonderful benefits. First, the size is around 160 guests who very quickly get to know each other and begin sharing this journey together. Sharing in meals, tours and fun times in the lounge! Unlike other cruises that are so large, this cruise experience allows guests to share common areas as see the same guests more often. If you wanted to be alone – I am not sure this is the type of cruise you would like as everyone here at least is sharing with one another.

There are scheduled tours that are included and many that you can choose from also for an additional cost. I have found that the included tours have been just perfect for the region and the guides are very good. We added one additional tour which was the World War II tour in Colmar which was superb! Each evening before dinner we are briefed in the lounge of the next days activities with an explanation, given the menu and activities for the evening. It reminds me of a land tour but with a ship as your accommodation.

Dining has been very nice. There is one seating for dinner and the chef creates a different meal for each night as well as some staples. If you are a very picky eater you may not find it so appealing and have hamburger or steak every day! Two of the ladies at our table are picky eaters but they have managed to stay sufficiently nourished! With one seating each evening, you can sit anywhere, however, you tend to sit with the people you have met and stick with your wait staff. Ours has been excellent! Many have served on the larger ships and really enjoy sailing on the river.

The staterooms are very nice, with a little smaller bathroom, but sufficient enough for what you might need. The beds are very comfortable and I would highly recommend having the verandah as the rooms without are very dark and not as appealing. Having the verandah gives great views from your bed – and sitting outside with a cup of coffee and fresh air is great.

The common areas include the library, sun deck, lounge, dining room, and a few other deck spaces. It never feels crowded which is not what you might expect being on a smaller ship. As I said we are outside now and they have served us hot chocolate ( and you can add some spirits if so inclined), the heaters are on, although it is nearing 70 today, and they provide blankets if needed. The view has been amazing as the cruise director shares the history of each of the castles we pass.

Should you go on a River Cruise? I would say it is a definitely a bucket list item as you approach retirement or are in retirement. The schedule and tours are designed for the active mature adults. Early risers and people that like to head to bed before 11 are best suited for the schedule.

As we rounded our last corner before docking – they played, “ What a Wonderful World”, which was a perfect end to our Rhine Castle briefing!

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