September 12, 2013
TI & Palace Resorts and Le Blanc Spa Resort Ambassador
There’s so many different ways that you can use your resort credit while vacationing at Palace Resorts or Le Blanc Spa Resort, but I’d like to share with you all the 5 best ways to make the most of your experience and your $1,500 credit!
Here are the 5 best ways to use your $1,500 resort credit: Read more
August 16, 2013
TI & Cancun Ambassador
I’m the biggest fan of love and romance which is why I’ve helped many of my clients plan their destination weddings, but what I enjoy even more than that is when couples renew their vows and recommit to spending their lives together. So when you’ve reached such milestones as your 1st, 5th, 10th, 25th, or your 50th wedding anniversary there’s no better way to solidify that bond than by renewing your vows and saying “I still do”! And if you ask me one of the best destinations to host your vow renewal ceremony is in Cancun, Mexico.
Below is my list of 5 reasons why Cancun should be where you recommit to each other:
1) Cancun’s blue waters and picture perfect sunsets are the ideal backdrop to a romantic ceremony that you and your partner deserve. Not to mention that the flawless white sand beaches are exactly what a barefoot ceremony calls for!
2) Whether you’re planning an intimate ceremony or a larger event with your friends and family, vow renewal packages are super affordable and available at beautiful resorts such as Palace Resorts, IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts and RIU Hotels & Resorts. The event planners at these properties are exceptional and motivated to create romantic moments that will never leave your memory.
3) The celebration doesn’t end at your vow renewal ceremony! In Cancun you can rejoice your love with a variety of activities, including snorkeling, couple’s spa treatments, fun excursions, dinner cruises or romantic dinners on the beach at sunset.
4) Couples are treated to the ultimate in romance with a wide selection of accommodations, from first-class adults-only properties to ocean views, oceanfront and swim-out suites. My favorite part is when the turn-down service includes rose petals. There really is no better way to say “I love you” than with rose petals!
5) Finally, planning a vow renewal ceremony in Cancun is so convenient and stress free! Forget about all of the headaches and mishaps you had at your original wedding ceremony, from the event planners to the ease of getting to Cancun and being in that vacation mindset, your experience is sure to be effortless and enjoyable.
Please know that I’m here to help you with all of the arrangements. I’d be more than happy to assist you love birds and your guests every step of the way!
August 15, 2013
Travel Center Lexington
TI & Aruba Ambassador
Aruba is truly an island that has something for everyone! Aruba offers great beaches, bars, restaurants, shopping, excursions, hotels and the list goes on and on. What is so exceptional about Aruba is that it’s significantly smaller than some other Caribbean islands, which affords it some unique aspects that may go unnoticed to the first time traveler. That’s why I’m here to help you plan that unforgettable vacation to Aruba!
Here’s my list of top 3s while visiting this charming island:
Top 3 Beaches:
1. Palm Beach
2. Eagle beach
3. Baby Beach
November 21, 2012
The holidays are some of the most hectic times of the year to travel, and with Thanksgiving finally here, you can expect the lines to be long and planes to be full. According to AAA, this year “43.6 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend,” and if you’re among them, you’ll want make sure you’re prepared to handle the crowds and the waits.
Here are 8 tips to help you save time and ensure your travel plans go through without a hitch!
1. Leave early. Give yourself more than enough time to get to the airport and through security and you won’t be stressed about missing your flight. It’s recommended to arrive at the airport at least two hours before your flight.
2. Pack light. Not having to check bags will get you through the airport faster and avoid baggage fees. You’ll also decrease the chances of your luggage being lost. If you must check a bag, be sure to get to the airport early because lines will be extra-long and be prepared to pay a fee. A packing checklist will help you remember what you need to bring.
3. Make sure your home is secure. Set lights timers and security systems, make sure all side and garage doors are locked. Notify a trusted neighbor that you’ll be away, and ask the postal service to hold your mail until you return.
4. Print your boarding pass. Save time by printing your boarding pass at home or having it available on your smartphone, if you have one. Using the check-in kiosks at the airport can also to save you time and help you avoid lines.
5. Gas up. If you’re driving to the airport make sure you have plenty of gas in the tank to get you there and back.
6. Know your parking needs. Know the type of parking you’ll need and how much it costs before you get to the airport. Remember to keep your parking garage ticket in a safe spot!
7. Check your flight status. Especially if you’re making a connecting flight. Know your flight numbers and airline contact info. Check schedules ahead of time and be aware of delays and changes. Download a flight-tracking app to your phone like FlightTrack Free, FlightView, GateGuru or AirportZoom, or sign up to receive alerts directly from your airline.
8. Bring snacks and entertainment. Distractions help ease the stress of traveling. Especially if your flight is long and you have layovers or delays, and extra especially if you are traveling with children.
Have a safe trip and a Happy Thanksgiving!
September 11, 2012
Palace Resorts offer signature amenities and unparalleled service that will leave you in awe of the exceptional all-inclusive vacation experience provided. Read more
July 10, 2012
Hi everyone! I am so excited to begin this series of communications with you… this is something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. Since I love being out there and getting to know you all, I thought this would be a great way for me to share my ideas, inspirations and thoughts with you, without even leaving my New York office! Check back periodically as I’ll be uploading new blog posts on a regular basis. And, of course we’ll be posting these throughout social, and would love to hear from you. Please comment and share your ideas, inspirations and thoughts with me too!
July 3, 2012
With tomorrow being the 4th of July, it’s time to celebrate everything red, white and blue! We’ve compiled a list of the most beautiful red sunsets, plush white sand beaches, and enticing crystal blue pools. Get in the spirit and dive right in!
Dreaming of a beautiful red sunset that’ll take your breath away? Then head to Ayer’s Rock, Australia. There, you’ll find Uluru, a 348-meter high, 500-million year old red rock and the world’s largest monolith which will create a feast for your eyes.
If you’d prefer to stay a bit closer to home, then jump over to Negril, Jamaica for a sunset that’ll be sure to foster a feeling of serenity. Check out Sandals Negril Beach Resort & Spa where you can view the sunsets from your swim-out Crystal Lagoon Suites.
There’s nothing like feeling the ultra fine powdery soft sand of the Cayman Islands in between your toes. The beaches’ soft texture, combined with its white reflective color, makes the sand cooler and softer than that of most continental beaches. Head to the Cayman Islands this summer and you’ll get your 5th night free, reduced rates, a $100 resort credit & more!
Maroma Beach, located in Riviera Maya just minutes outside of Playa del Carmen, boasts beautiful white sand beaches. Experience miles of fine white sand and calm turquoise waters at the El Dorado Maroma, a Beachfront Resort, by Karisma , which is offering reduced rates on air and land packages for bookings made and traveled by 12/22/12.
The Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria Resort is a tropical oasis providing kids and adults an experience of a lifetime! Guests can experience the Wailea Canyon Activity Pool, a 2,000-foot-long, 770,000-gallon pool consisting of nine free-form pools at six levels which are connected by a river that carries swimmers along at varying speeds, from whitewater rapids to lazy currents.
Atlantis, Paradise Island’s Aquaventure Water Park is a one of a kind 141-acre waterscape boasting 11 unique pools, 20 swimming areas, thrilling high-speed water slides, a mile-long river ride with rolling rapids and wave surges, incredible Atlantean-themed towers all connected by a lush tropical environment. Now you can save up to 45%, kids 12 and under eat breakfast and dinner free, plus adults can get a Taste of Atlantis Pass which includes over $150 of Atlantis Culinary Experiences!
June 15, 2012
Looking for the perfect gift for Father’s Day? There’s no better gift than the gift of amazing experiences, so give your dad the gift of travel! There are numerous destinations that would be ideal for any father to visit. Destinations for nature lovers, sports fans, thrill seekers, foodies, and art lovers cater to the many different interests a father can have. Whether it is a family vacation, romantic getaway, or just some alone time, Travel Impressions has the perfect deal for dad.
Is your father one with nature? There are tons of destinations that fit the bill for your father, the nature lover. Colorado is a state that is filled with natural beauty. The Rocky Mountains can be the perfect destination for dad, with tons of outdoor activies. Explore the mountains, go skiing or snowboarding, or trek through numerous state and national parks. Whether you’re looking for big cities or small mountain towns, Colorado offers countless attractions, including amusement parks, zoos, aquariums, and wineries. With different locations in Colorado such as Aspen, Beaver Creek, and Copper Mountain, running out of things to do and see will be nearly impossible. Lake Tahoe is also a popular destination for nature lovers because of its natural beauty. Lake Tahoe is a destination for all seasons, and a must-see for many reasons. This blue alpine lake is surrounded by majestic pine forests and mountains that are stunning in person. On one side of the lake lies California which offers endless opportunities for family fun. On the other side lies Nevada, with major casinos that provide year-round nightlife and excitement. Needless to say Lake Tahoe is filled with stuff for dad.
If your dad is the sports-loving adventurous type, then look no further! Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort provides the perfect getaway for dad with seven golf courses nearby to enjoy. Los Cabos is known for its beautiful ocean, making snorkeling and scuba diving ideal for any dad. Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort also has a watersports center, which can provide a great thrill. Horseback riding and tennis courts are also available to guests staying at this resort. Located on the coast of Spain, the Don Miguel Golf and Sport Hotel offers an unforgettable vacation to play your favorite sport in a luxurious setting. With two eighteen-hole golf courses, four swimming pools, sixteen tennis courts, a pro-style practice sports field, convention center, and watersports center, the opportunities for fun are endless. The Don Miguel Golf and Sport Hotel offers a sports inclusive concept with 58 different activities free of charge! If you want to take your dad just a bit further east (or west!), consider visiting one the of Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the Great Barrier Reef. Located in the Coral Sea off the coast of Australia, the Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system composed of nearly 3,000 individual reefs. Named one of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Great Barrier Reef is a place you truly have to see to believe. There are many options of things to do when visiting such as taking a luxury cruise, snorkeling or scuba diving, deep sea fishing, or taking a chartered plane overlooking the reef. Visiting the Great Barrier Reef would be the perfect experience for the adventurous father in your life.
Is your dad a foodie? If so, then these destinations will surely have your father’s mouth watering. New Orleans is world famous for its food; this cuisine is distinctive and takes influence from French and Creole cuisine. The Cajun cuisine is a big part of the city of New Orleans and local residents take pride in that. Famous Cajun dishes include Boudain (smoked sausage), gumbo (soup), and jambalaya. The Cajun cuisine definitely makes visiting New Orleans a must. Paris is also a paradise for those who love to eat. The French are known for their cheese, wine, bread, and escargot. French cuisine is so unique and there’s no better place to sample French food than in Paris, the nation’s capital. There are 9,000 restaurants in Paris, which means finding good old fashioned French cuisine won’t be hard, so send dad there for a gastronomical adventure!
If your father’s an art lover, then he’s in luck. Italy is a country known for its art – not just its museums, but its architecture and history. Rome and Vatican City should be on the top of everyone’s list who loves to take in the beauty of all forms of art. The Sistine Chapel is something you truly need to see to believe as it’s absolutely breathtaking. The Coliseum and the Trevi Fountain are both two brilliant pieces of architectural art. The Vatican museums and the Coliseum are two of the top fifty most visited tourist destinations receiving four million visitors each year. Florence, the heart of the Renaissance, ranked by Forbes Magazine as one of the most beautiful cities in the entire world, is another destination for the art loving dad in your life. The statue of David, created by legendary artist Michelangelo, is one of the most recognizable pieces of art in the world. The city also contains numerous museums and art galleries, such as the Uffizi Gallery and the Pitti Palace, amongst others, and still has an influence in the fields of art, and culture today. If your dad is looking for a modern city that’s rich with art, then New York City is your choice. New York is home to some world famous art museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Modern Museum of Art, and the Guggenheim Museum of New York. Some of the most recognizable paintings are located in these New York museums. These are just a few of the many great cities for art fanatics.
Sending your father away on a vacation fit for him would certainly prove to be a Father’s Day to remember, so book today!
Book Your Father’s Day Deal online at www.travelimpressions.com
Agents: Log on to Quest to book.
Travelers: To book, search our locator to find a Travel Agency.
May 22, 2012
It’s estimated that 34 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more this Memorial Day weekend, and most of them plan to get there via car! If you live near any of the destinations below and are up for road trip, read on for some great ideas as well as valuable tips to make the most out of your weekend getaway.
- New York City – The options are endless in NYC as there are an abundance of street fairs, free concerts, family festivals, and walking tours this weekend. Plus, since many New Yorkers will be traveling to the Hamptons this weekend, you’ll find the streets are less crowded, and thus, a more enjoyable experience for tourists. Shop for NYC Hotels
- Washington D.C. – There’s tons to do in Washington DC this weekend as the nation’s capital celebrates this special holiday. Perhaps most noteworthy is the National Memorial Day Parade taking place on Monday at 2pm. Marching bands and veterans from all across the US flock to the area to be part of the parade. There’s also a free concert on the West Lawn of the Capital on Sunday and features actors Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise, and other guest artists along with the National Symphony Orchestra. Shop for DC Hotels
- Boston – Head to Boston if you’re in the mood for some fun, especially for those seeking a musical adventure! Boston has a full line up events over the course of the weekend including a concert by 20th century American composers featuring clarinetist Ray Lam and pianist Yelena Beriyeva, a Reggae concert, and even a four-day event that features multiple Blues, Celtic, and Country performers (Club Passim Campfire). Shop for Boston Hotels
- Phoenix – Phoenix hosts many festivities this weekend to celebrate the holiday. This weekend, the Academy Drum and Bugle Corps will debut their 2012 musical production “Left of Spring” as the Arizona Academy of the Performing Arts hosts the Memorial Day Celebration at the Pera Club, in nearby Tempe. When visiting Phoenix, consider visiting the Desert Botanical Garden, one of the world’s finest collections of desert plants. Home to 139 rare, threatened and endangered plant species from around the world, there is no finer place to enjoy the desert beauty. The Garden is located in Papago Park in Central Phoenix. Shop for Phoenix Hotels
- Las Vegas – A road trip to Las Vegas never disappoints! You’ll find amazing restaurants, shops, and shows that’ll have you begging for more. This weekend, the 14th annual Punk Rock Bowling and Music Festival heads to downtown Las Vegas, while there are countless special events taking place on the strip. Choose between a weekend-long patio party at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, a Caribbean-inspired Memorial Day party at the Mirage, special concerts at Caesars Palace, and many more… Shop for Las Vegas Hotels
- Sonoma – For those interested in exploring California’s wine country, a road trip to Sonoma will surely delight! There’s a whole slew of events lined up for this weekend, including a food and wine festival on Sunday with seven amazing bands (Oysterpalooza), a Memorial Day Pig Roast where you bring your own side dishes (The Whole Hog), and the much-loved musical duo vocalist Patti Cathcart and guitarist Tuck Andress put on a performance at the Tuck Theater this Saturday. Shop for Sonoma Hotels
As you prepare for your road trip getaway and are gearing up for a weekend jam-packed with festivities, keep the following tips in mind. They’ll help you avoid any potential problems and ensure your travels are safe, fun and as stress-free as possible.
- Make sure your vehicle is ready for the drive – Check all fluids, filters, belts, hoses and tires. Be sure your spare tire is usable and easy to get to. Since you will be in your car for a bit, make sure it is clean.
- Pack your vehicle properly – Heavy items go in first! Be sure all loose items are secured and keep your rear view clear. Be sure not to go over the weight capacity of the vehicle.
- Have plenty of entertainment options available – Keep everyone entertained, especially the kids. Toys, books, DVDs, iPad, iPod, or CDs will keep everyone occupied.
- Be prepared should an emergency arise - Be sure someone knows where you are going and how to reach you in case of an emergency. Don’t forget your driver’s license, vehicle registration, as well as your auto and medical insurance cards. Bring your cell phone charger (consider buying an in-car charger), and prescriptions if necessary. Also, it doesn’t hurt to pack a first aid kit, just in case.
- Know the parking situation of your destination – the city you’re visiting may have entirely different parking rules. Look them up in advance. Additionally, know how much parking at your hotel costs and plan accordingly.
- And finally, have fun! – Since most peoples’ schedules are busy, it’s not so often that the whole family can get together, so remember to have fun and enjoy being together. You’ll create memories to last a lifetime and make sure to document these with plenty of pictures! Don’t forget your cameras and chargers!
May 17, 2012
To celebrate National Travel & Tourism Week last week, we wanted to honor the thousands of Travel Agent professionals that tirelessly work to help travelers have fantastic vacations, by letting you know all the amazing things they do to add value to your trip. So if you thought you were saving by planning your own vacation online, think again. [Tips compiled by Travel Impressions' Barbie Groves]
- Knowledge & Expertise. Researching travel deals, vacation tips, hotels, resorts, prices, reviews, etc. can be really time consuming for the average traveler. The beauty of working with a travel agent is that you’ll be able to tap into their existing knowledge and expertise on all of these subjects. Travel professionals have first hand knowledge on dozens of destinations, and often take special trips to learn about new offerings, properties, and amenities to offer you the best advice possible. A travel agent working closely with their preferred tour operator has access to a multitude of resources to ensure the best vacation experience possible.
- The Human Touch. Agents will ensure you will have an amazing experience on your trip. Agents are excited and will show their enthusiasm in helping you, their clients, have the best vacation possible. Travel professionals are personally invested in seeing your trip become a success. This personal interaction with real, live agents trumps the often lackluster experience of doing it yourself online.
- Personalization. Due to “The Human Touch” you receive with a live person helping you, travel agents are able to personalize your trip for your needs. Understanding your needs and wants, agents can make recommendations on vacations for families, adventure seekers, nightlife-lovers, honeymooners, foodies, sun bathers, and more. Knowing the differences and nuances of both the destinations and the wants and needs of their clients make their service invaluable.These days it’s all about ‘unique’ experiences – travel agents have access to their preferred tour operators portfolio of products, whether it be a villa, an all-inclusive hotel in the Caribbean, or a beginners guide to the great cities of Europe. Using a travel agent means there is no ‘one size fits all’.
- Getting Resolutions. Unfortunately, as we all know, travel can either be a breeze or it can be a pain, and it’s often not in the travelers hands to change the situation. Travel agents to the rescue. Mix-up at the airport? Lost luggage? Making sure you arrive on-time, hassle-free, despite the flight cancellation? If a problem arises at the destination your travel agency will have the support of their preferred tour operator and the strength of their hotel relationships to make sure the issue is more than adequately remedied. These are all situations where your travel agent can help resolve the situation on your behalf. They are your advocate, and they have your back.
- Planning Around Unforeseen Circumstances. Natural disasters, terrorism, and inclement weather are all facts of the world today, but that shouldn’t prevent you from planning an amazing trip! These are all issues that can disrupt your vacation and travel experience, and knowing that travel agents have the ability, and the right relationships, to work with your airline or resort and fight to get you credits for a future trip, will
- Trust. Building that personal relationship gives you the confidence that you can trust your agent’s expertise, and that no matter the situation, they will be there to help you find a resolution.
- Due Diligence. Agents make sure you have your preassigned seats (your usual aisle seat), your requested special meal, booking ahead of time your spa time, tee times at the resort’s best golf course, and other experiences. Why do it yourself when the travel agents do this for you happily?
- Prepping You For Travel. Often, these multi-talented agents are able to help you in dealing with some of the “requirements” of travel including securing visas, rushing you passports, and other government related documentation domestic or foreign. Travel agents make it their business to know the various government rules and regulations for the places you want to visit most.
- Saves You Time. Think about all the time you’ll be saving yourself: no need to scour the web for the best resorts, prices, packages, experiences, events, dealing with travel complications, and securing visas when your travel agent can do this all for you? If time = money, your travel agent just made you rich.
- Great Pricing Options. Travel agents have access to the same rates you can find yourself on the web, but can often find sales and promotions only available to agents, not available to consumers online. Even more important, a travel agent, rather than just focusing on the lowest price, will be able to find the best value for YOUR particular needs and travel preferences.
- Relationships –> Exclusives. Due to their relationships with the resorts, large travel companies, networks, and travel consortia, travel professionals are able to request exclusives for you, their clients. These exclusives can include: price reductions, seat or resort upgrades, early/late checkout times, and other value-added amenities. A travel agent working with a strong tour operator partner cannot be beaten when it comes to providing the best value vacation.
With travel agents bringing you all this value, won’t you contact your local agent before planning your next vacation?
Vice President, Global Sales at Travel Impressions