LTADPodcast

Exploring Sandals Royal Curaçao

December 17, 2023 LTAD Podcast Season 1 Episode 20
LTADPodcast
Exploring Sandals Royal Curaçao
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

What if we told you there is a resort that offers an intoxicating blend of relaxation and adventure, wrapped up in luxury? Picture us, your hosts, whisking you off to Sandals Royal Curious Owl and the enchanting island of Curacao. This episode is packed with our experiences, tips, and comparisons, guiding you through our journey from flight savings to the luxurious atmosphere of the resort. We'll also sprinkle in our upcoming plans for a trip to Disney and a wedding in Philadelphia. Spoiler alert: we think you’ll fall in love with Sandals Royal Curious Owl, just as we did.

Brace yourselves as we discuss our not-so-impressive experience at Miami airport, an aspect that often goes unmentioned in travel stories. But the hiccup was worth it as we were greeted by the warm hospitality of the small yet efficient Curacao airport. 

Lastly, we invite you to sit back and envision our adventures and the views at Sandals World Curacao. Imagine the luxury of the beachfront bungalow and the unique accommodations, the fascinating wildlife, and the delicious dishes at the resort's diverse restaurants. Also, don't miss our honest review of the less than perfect service at Butch's Steakhouse. Buckle up and immerse yourself in our travel tales – it's time to get inspired!

Speaker 1:

You can play it out here. No, that's horrible, I like this better. Hello everybody.

Speaker 2:

Happy Friday. It is a beautiful Friday in Nashville, tennessee. It's chilly out there today, especially coming back from the Caribbean, especially really cold this weekend. Boo Yay, boo Yay. We have a split audience here. Somebody loves the cold from California, because I guess you never had cold in California. I know it snowed a few times in California. It's very, but no, it's not cold.

Speaker 3:

It's very, but not where we were in Southern California.

Speaker 1:

Oh, okay, okay. Well, that means the world's ending, if it's snowing there.

Speaker 2:

Pretty much. We hope everybody had a fantastic week. I know we have had a whirlwind of about a week and a half here since the last episode uploaded. Oh gosh, we have been, I feel, like around the world and back. So welcome everybody to the LTD podcast. Today we have with us Disney, dana and Erica.

Speaker 1:

And Mike Me, I'm hearing music coming from the road.

Speaker 2:

Oh, that's our, that's our, that's our storefront.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I want to meet that, let's turn that down for a second All right.

Speaker 2:

Good, so we do not have any voicemails this week. However, I think I know of one coming next week and it's a good one. So we're kind of we're doing things a little backwards this week, but we know we have a voicemail next week and it's it's super fun. We had a great time. Mike and I today specifically want to talk about our trip to Sandals roll Curious Owl. We had a fantastic time, so we're just going to dive right in. I don't think this podcast is going to be a full hour. We're going to try to cut these back to 30 to 45 minutes instead of a full hour from here forward. But you never know, Sometimes y'all know we babble on and talk for an hour and a half, so good luck with that. So we were. We were given an invitation to go to Sandals Royal Curious Owl literally, I think like a week prior to the actual trip Quick invitation. It was a quick turnaround invitation, so I offered it up to my agents first, as I always do. If it's an opportunity for them to go, always give them priority. But nobody wanted to go because the airfare was a little high. So we were sitting here at the storefront and I was getting ready to. You know, just let Amanda know it was in my head. I need to let Amanda know we're not taking the invitation and Mike goes. You want to go to Curious Owl?

Speaker 1:

It was one of those weird resorts, that's just like you know. Like, do you want to go? Do you not want to go? It's one that I know. I have questions about if it's worth the Sandals price or you know the luxury that they say it is.

Speaker 2:

I have to say I was feeling the same way and I had two strikes against me on this one. First and foremost is I've done 14 trips this year and I'm getting a little burnout and they weren't all the Sandals, Royal, Curious Owl. I've done multiple trips Hawaii, California, Alaska, Jamaica, Disney like we've done multiple trips, but I'm I'm, I'm burning out. It's like okay, I need to stay home. I've been going so much this year, so that was kind of strike one. I wasn't really feeling like I wanted to go anywhere.

Speaker 1:

And you already had a trip to Disney planned.

Speaker 2:

Yes, In Philadelphia, but um.

Speaker 1:

Oh yeah, in Philadelphia.

Speaker 2:

That's the last one We'll, we'll. Philadelphia will be our last trip. I'll go into a wedding, Um, but then also, I wasn't super interested in this resort at all. I've seen pictures online. Um, I didn't think I was going to like it. I had no interest in going, Although what I do is I need to go see it, Um, because we sell these products and you it's. You don't need to sell a product blind, you, you need to go visit and experience what you're selling, to be the best version of you for a travel planner to help your client. So, um, I was very reluctant to to do this and Mike was sitting there and he he piped up because I was about to just tell Amanda no, nobody could do it, Um, but Mike piped up. He said you want to go to Curacao? And I was like okay, that's got to be my son that I'm supposed to go do this.

Speaker 1:

So and we have. We had air air points, so that helped out a lot.

Speaker 2:

It did Um.

Speaker 1:

Actually we did not. We did not with America.

Speaker 2:

You're mixing up Southwest and Philadelphia and Disney and all the things we've done.

Speaker 3:

I don't know how you got trips confused.

Speaker 2:

I actually never ever flown American period. So Mike gets online. He books it no big deal. Two days later we're suddenly upgraded to first class.

Speaker 1:

Well, we got a discount too on that too. How?

Speaker 2:

did you get the discount, though? What was that? Was that that capital? One thing, yeah, it's a promo it was.

Speaker 1:

it just said you get $300 cheaper. I was like all right.

Speaker 2:

Okay, yeah, so on my computer. I know it's on my computer, it's on my phone, but with my capital one card you can install capital one shopping in what it does? It looks for discounts and promotions, while you're online no matter what website you're on, if it's got a promo, it pops up and you can activate it. That's cool, and then you get that savings. So, first of all, we saved a lot of money on it. How much for those flights period before the discount Eight something per person, and then we got how much off. We had $300 off each from the capital, one shopping Right. So we saved $600 on 16. So we paid $1,000 a cent chain for the rent. That's amazing, and it was immediate too.

Speaker 1:

As soon as I booked it in, as soon as I clicked find the price or go to checkout or whatever it put it up there. You know, this is this discount. Do you want this? Oh yeah, yeah. So that was cool.

Speaker 2:

And then not two days later, not 48 hours later he said we got upgraded to first class. No, no, no, no, no, no, no, hang on, you purchased first class from Nashville to Miami and then Miami to Nashville.

Speaker 1:

It was like $50 a person, and I think that was both. No, I think it's $50 a person for going down there just to Miami and then would be in regular coach or whatever. From Miami to Curacao and then from Curacao back would be in coach.

Speaker 3:

And then from.

Speaker 1:

Miami to. Nashville, we'd be back in first class and it was, I think, $50 a person per way.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, Then two days, because you did that same day we purchased it and then two days later we got fully upgraded on all that.

Speaker 1:

Right, because Miami to Curacao was like $1,500. Yeah, to get upgraded.

Speaker 2:

So, but we got completely upgraded first time flyers with. American on the because we had upgraded like the $50, like we just said, but then Miami to Curacao and Curacao to Miami then got upgraded by American for us. So we flew first class the whole way.

Speaker 1:

Oh my God, we hated it. I don't ever want to go back to that. That's ridiculous.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, go back there with the peasants.

Speaker 1:

I mean, it's not that like glamorous or whatever, we weren't on that. We weren't on like an international UK lay down seats or nothing that's next, but it was big, comfy seats. It was leg room it was. There was little tables everywhere that popped out. We didn't even know that we're bringing us drinks and all of a sudden she reached across and pushed a button and a table shot out the side of the big console.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so we've never done first class. You know, from Nashville, southwest goes everywhere.

Speaker 1:

That's what we fly, it's probably not good, because I drove we go down there and I put my iPad in the front thing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, mike got so comfortable in first class, that we could walked off the plane in Miami and left the back of the seat no way yeah. Luckily we stepped off the plane at gate D2 and re, re, re boarded the same plane at gate D2. So when he realized that sitting there, the plane was sitting there, we're at the same gate, they went and got on the plane and got a form before the cleaners got on the Miami American Airlines.

Speaker 1:

people went running in there.

Speaker 2:

But then on the way home he did the same thing I forgot.

Speaker 1:

Well, I forgot the iPad, but I found it. But in the center it's just like your center console in your car. It's a deep center console. I have plugs and USB ports. I could put a whole water bottle. As a matter of fact, it did. And left it, left it.

Speaker 2:

And you know, to jump forward, when we were going from Curacao the resort in Curacao back to the airport and we got off the bus, he left his cell phone. He was completely out of the bus, on the ground and I'm sitting here still trying to get up and go out.

Speaker 1:

I wasn't drinking with him either.

Speaker 2:

And I paused. I was like, look back, make sure you didn't leave anything. And there's his phone sitting there and I'm like well, I didn't leave it, but he did so. Mike had a hard time this trip.

Speaker 3:

Super relaxed.

Speaker 2:

I guess.

Speaker 1:

Wow, mike. I mean you know you got all the backpacks and everything else and when you unpack into that airline you unpack pretty much, you get all your electronics, out all your cords, because it was a four hour flight, I guess, and you don't check, is it center console?

Speaker 2:

I'm so forgetful period I don't fully impact because that's the kind of stuff that I'll do. And you know a Fannie Pac is great at Disney World. But I like to have a Fannie Pac when I'm on a plane because I'm a rapper on my way, everything is right there and I don't forget or leave anything. And I don't have to go check on all the pockets. I do regardless. I know Because, just in case.

Speaker 1:

I know myself, but whatever, before you get off this airplane, I know we're trying to catch this quick.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, go ahead.

Speaker 1:

One thing I did like about it too they close the curtain to the peasants behind us.

Speaker 2:

Oh, so that is a real thing, yeah, and they tell them you cannot use this bathroom this is just for us, it's just for the queen. I'm so fast.

Speaker 1:

And they have to walk all the way to the back of the plane 16 of us.

Speaker 2:

up there was eight rows of four. So here I thought I was super cool when I get like boarding group A with Southwest Right.

Speaker 3:

Well, in some regards we are, but the grand scale.

Speaker 1:

Obviously, we're the, we're the up, and still now.

Speaker 2:

I'm a royal peasant, apparently so. But no, it was nice and American is American. It was nice, it was comfortable, I can tell y'all. Mike booked the flights, keep this in mind and I don't know that there was many more options, to be honest. But going down there, the connection was fine. Had we had to change terminals? It was. It was a 45 minute connection. That would not have been enough time had we had to change terminals.

Speaker 1:

I think we could have going down there because we didn't have to go through customs.

Speaker 2:

Right. But we got lucky because we are at the same gate because our flight out of Nashville was delayed. So we're sitting in Nashville and we hear over this one man is pushing, you know people come down and will chairs and then our port employee will push them. It's one man who pushed two different people, had his radio turned on at full volume, it was so loud and we were commenting about how loud that radio is. Gosh, you need to turn that down. Well, a few minutes after he brought the second person down, he's standing over by the door where you go down the little gangway thing and he walks back in and we hear on his radio the pilot from the plane we're about to board say delay this by 15 minutes, you need to delay it, delay boarding. And so me and Mike, that gets our attention and we're looking like great. They said I think the whole airport heard it.

Speaker 1:

It was something leaking.

Speaker 2:

Well, that wasn't quite it, so. So then the lady is standing there and they're kind of talking and the one who's going to come over the radio in the airport speaker and tell all of us at the gate that the flight is delayed, she gets on the speaker and she goes. We're going to have a 15 minute delay due to a. We got to refill some fluids.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, but I don't think what you heard started to say leak the radio transmission between the guy outside and her.

Speaker 2:

He did say, he did say, and that's where she got on the radio.

Speaker 1:

Right then.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, but we all heard it. Yeah, so it was hydraulic fluid. Yeah, we don't need that. We don't need that. I don't think that's important at all.

Speaker 1:

No, nothing in the plane. Yeah, nothing at all. It doesn't matter steering or anything.

Speaker 2:

So so we board this plane regardless. No, we landed in Miami twice when I got reboarded the plane in Miami to go to Curacao, I told that the lady sending there I said yeah. I said we flew. We just flew this plane from Nashville to here and we're reboarding to go to Curacao. Same plane and this plane was leaking hydraulic fluid in Nashville. Y'all be sure to check that Her face. She was going, oh yeah, they checked it. Lay better. You're welcome All the people who are on my flight. Janice saved your life. I did, and you know it was not the same plane going back, because the bathroom was different. It was like a light kind of like a white, creamy color in the bathroom.

Speaker 1:

Going back it was like almost a black Before we come back on the back trip. First of all, miami is the worst airport I've ever been to in my life.

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah, that's awful. It's like a 1970s ghetto in there, really. And the sky train is down, yeah, it's dirty, it's nasty, it's trashy. It's crowded, it's hard to move around. Sounds great.

Speaker 1:

It's awful I don't think I'll ever connect to Miami.

Speaker 2:

I would have voted off. Wow, but some. Just. Curacao is not option, that's it. You connect to Miami.

Speaker 1:

I guess not.

Speaker 2:

I was like I you walk 18 miles to go 500 feet. Yeah. Because I got three levels the plane level the the gate level and the sky train level.

Speaker 1:

And then actually the sky train is above that level. That's a walking level and the third level, and you have to go to the third level to walk anywhere.

Speaker 2:

I thought it was three, but I wouldn't pay attention. Well, the return trip is what we're talking about. I wouldn't pay attention. I was just trying to get to customs because it was such a tight connection. So let's go ahead and talk about Miami airport and the way that we had an hour 30 minute connection Now going down. We were 15 minutes late. They made it up in the air.

Speaker 1:

We were fine, but coming back we were only seven gates away from where we landed but it was like a four mile walk.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it was so far we're going to go to customs. But we only had an hour and a half and we had to walk, which took a good solid 10 minutes to get from where we were to customs and man we were having a two mile walk.

Speaker 1:

I got it on my watch. We were having it. And then when we got the customs.

Speaker 2:

We need to get global entry period.

Speaker 3:

We watched them.

Speaker 2:

And if you don't have global entry, I'm going to encourage you to go get it. If you don't know what it is, it's essentially where you go and have all the security the fingerprint, the eye scan, the background checks all the things done Now, in the end you'll get global entry, which basically you bypass that. That that stand line.

Speaker 1:

We had some friends on it and they literally just walked right past, yeah. Tara got through so fast that I didn't even realize she was gone, like she's got to be behind that pole. No, she's gone. No, she was gone.

Speaker 2:

So what? Instead of standing in line at customs?

Speaker 1:

She wasn't in first class like we were.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, the huge crowds of people coming in. You bypass through a little area with these little kiosk and you go to the kiosk. You scan your passport on the little thing. It looks at your face. It lets you in your your through, but you do have to clear all these background checks and stuff. When you get global entry. It also automatically gives you TSA pre-check, which is also super incredible to have, especially when you come through Orlando with a big bottle of lotion and they're gonna make you a $50 bottle of lotion, by the way, and then I'll make you throw it away and you have to run back and check your bag so you can keep your lotion. And I made it through plenty of time.

Speaker 3:

We'll talk about that in a minute.

Speaker 2:

We'll talk about that in a minute or next podcast, but period being is that an hour and a half hour 45 is not enough time in. Miami. If you're coming international to domestic connection, it's not enough time.

Speaker 1:

Our gates were literally, I think there were six, seven gates apart. I don't remember what they were, but it took us, I mean it was an hour and 45 minutes.

Speaker 2:

Well, by the time we got, through immigration and customs and they check your other things, and then we had to go through security again by the time we got through security because there was no TSA pre-check there. By the time we got back through, we were literally running to our gate and they were boarding the plane, so we walked up and just kept walking right on the plane. Into our first class seats Into our first class seats, which made it all better when we belonged. So, anyways, let's get to Curacao. So when we landed in Curacao, it is a very small airport, but it is a very nice airport. Yeah, it's better than some of the other things, yeah and it's one of these airports where you come in again. Their customs was through that little kiosk thing.

Speaker 1:

They had things together, it was smooth, it was just boom. Of course we were the first place, first people at the plane, because we were first class, but sorry, but the people behind us, you go through that machine. I mean it was quick, so have y'all been?

Speaker 2:

through those machines before. Jamaica has them too, but in Curacao it was a little different.

Speaker 1:

You just hold your pass.

Speaker 2:

And I'm sure a lot of people have seen those machines before. But so for those who have not, because every time I go once it's different from the other- You're in like a cattle, shoot it's almost like a cattle shoot, yeah when you got this little gate and it opens and you step in with your bag.

Speaker 3:

Everything turns green.

Speaker 2:

You walk up, you scan your passport through the thing and then you gotta stand with your feet and let it take your picture. Now taking your picture part kinda takes a minute in these machines.

Speaker 1:

Going down. It didn't work. I have to move to make it work for me. It didn't show nothing on the screen. It just all of a sudden, the gate's open.

Speaker 2:

Yeah well, it says stand still, but nothing happens. And when I like move my arms or something, then it'll take my pictures.

Speaker 1:

And you can see the other ones. There's like four of them.

Speaker 2:

They were all working, yeah, and the gate opens and you step out and you're in and that's literally it From there. If you had checked a bag, you'd pick your bag up that I had to carry on.

Speaker 1:

One thing I don't understand about this they said they did that for like staffing problems and it's easier they can put four machines there, but then there was four people there standing there helping you, in case the machine they would tell you to move your passport.

Speaker 2:

It's cause machines don't always work Correct, and they don't work correctly when they do work.

Speaker 1:

So and they weren't new.

Speaker 2:

So the KiraSaw Report is very nice, very nice airport, I was happily surprised, much nicer than Montego Bay, except we couldn't find the Sandals desk. Well, the Sandals desk. They say there's a Sandals lounge.

Speaker 1:

It's a desk, but it's outside in the heat. Come on, you walk outside, it's a call.

Speaker 2:

However, they check you in very quickly, they tag your bags and they immediately escort you to the bus. That's air conditioned and you can sit on the AC bus while you're waiting for anyone else who might be probably within the 15, 20 minute window for you to go. It is a 45 minute ride from the airport to Sandals, royal KiraSaw.

Speaker 1:

It's not a Jamaica ride, neither there's no countryside. It's a straight city. Yeah, all the way through it.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it's parts of it were reminiscent of Jamaica, but it's a very nice island. There's money there, Tons of little cars everywhere, Very few people walking like in Jamaica UCA, everybody walking KiraSaw very few people were walking for their mode of transportation.

Speaker 1:

Lots of schools, lots of uniforms, Lots of schools uniforms.

Speaker 2:

Lots of Asian type businesses as well.

Speaker 1:

There was a lot of that there tends to be a large Asian population on the island of KiraSaw. It's like every building was something Asian written on it.

Speaker 2:

Right, so Go figure, and Chinese, and they have restaurants. They had a cab, see McDonald's. Oh, man. Oh man, I sent y'all a picture, I know.

Speaker 1:

The drive-in's were backed up.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah. So it was really neat. It just seems like an island that we could go and live and be very comfortable and not feel so third-worldish.

Speaker 1:

I guess you could say I saw a lot of Americans, or I don't know what they were driving around in rental cars.

Speaker 2:

Just a mix of all kinds of people and backgrounds and cultures. It was a great, great island.

Speaker 1:

And all of a sudden you turned into the gates of heaven Pretty much what it looked like.

Speaker 2:

Well, first of all, to get the route they took, two sandals were across. I'll take us past the cruise port. Oh, I'm gonna wait for that and all of that shopping that was down there.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, that was cool.

Speaker 2:

So let's jump here real quick, because from Sandals World, kirasaw you can take the bus stopped on the top of the bridge.

Speaker 1:

You might have killed us. You can take pictures.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, but you can take a shopping trip. It's an excursion. You can go through island routes, but don't do that. Kirasaw's a great island, it's safe. Call a taxi. So, yeah, that's what it is, and it's much cheaper to call a taxi and go to the shopping that's over by that cruise port and then call a taxi to go back, than paying for the excursion.

Speaker 1:

Because that was like a four-hour excursion for that island route one.

Speaker 2:

If you don't feel safe, then go with the excursion, but it's quite a bit more expensive.

Speaker 1:

There's still one. Just drop you off out there, there's still one.

Speaker 2:

Just drop you off, it's you're basically paying for your ride, or don't go by yourself anywhere in a foreign country is always my thing, especially if you're a female, but get a taxi go with you. This is a couples resort or an adults only resort, so Hold on before you do that.

Speaker 1:

We're getting on this four-lane road, driving through these towns and red lights and stuff, and all of a sudden we see this bridge in the distance. Yeah, we're like we gotta go over that bridge. And the lady goes, get your cameras out. And we got up to this bridge.

Speaker 2:

It's incredible. This is a bridge, four-lane 55, 60 mile an hour traffic, just way up in the skies, way in the clouds it was crazy looking All of a sudden.

Speaker 1:

We get up to the. She goes everybody get your cameras out. She stops in the middle of the bridge. This big old bus has just stopped For everybody to take pictures. I'm just waiting for her to get in the room, but it was crossing over some water.

Speaker 2:

There's a lot of oil in Curacao.

Speaker 3:

There's a lot of oil oil rigs.

Speaker 2:

Right, okay, so it was that that body of water was. It was like kind of like an inlet coming in to like a little marina, and then the cruise ships were out here on the coast with all the shopping and everything. So it was really cool. There's a lot to do in Curacao off property, outside of a resort. There was ATVs, there was caves, there was a turtle beach that was snorkeling. There were all these things out there on Turtle Beach.

Speaker 1:

It's just gonna be a lot longer than that.

Speaker 2:

It's not gonna be 30 minutes.

Speaker 1:

Okay, okay, that's fun.

Speaker 2:

But I'm gonna get through it as fast as I can. Yeah, okay, so there's a lot to do in Curacao rather than just the resort itself. So, okay, going to this resort, we were passing all kinds of little communities and homes and businesses, but then we kind of came out into just a real non-populated area and you turned right into this beautiful golf course. It's incredible.

Speaker 1:

What did they say? 400 acres or something like that. 3000 acres, oh, a little bit more. Now it's a 3000 acres of private estate and it's so different. And there is cactus.

Speaker 2:

There was one community within that 3000 acre estate One community and then the Sandals Resort and this golf course, and that's it Now, this estate way back when this island was formed. This island was built off a slave labor. We're gonna put it out there it was. That's what it was. That's what they had. A lot of slaves brought in, there was a lot of cotton, there was a lot of corn. But on this estate the original home is still there and it was like the estate manager's home and it's beautiful. It's this big, beautiful home. It looks very modern for it to be. However, old it was, but it was beautiful. But the funny thing about this golf course is you couldn't see the greens. It was covered, like he was saying, by cactus and very dry island, lots of dry plants, lots of iguanas. Now it was humid, but the climate itself was dry cactus everywhere, lots of cactus. More cactus.

Speaker 1:

I've seen Arizona or anything Interesting.

Speaker 2:

I don't know what I expected, but I guess I didn't expect that I completely didn't expect that. But golf is not included at this resort because sandals does not own this golf course. They just happen to be on this estate, where this golf course is located. So you can pay to do golf at Sandals. Roque Ursao. Yeah, it's incredible. It's just absolutely gorgeous. It's worth paying to do it, and I'm sure most golfers would pay to do it. So. But you turn into this estate, you drive a couple of miles back, two, three miles back, and you keep going and going and going and going and going and finally you come around this corner and then you're on the edge of the ocean and there sits the resort and you pull in. It's gorgeous, it's beautiful. And you then start getting your typical sandals experience. They meet you, they check you into the lobby.

Speaker 1:

Can we complain about that?

Speaker 3:

But did you get a towel? Yes, we did, okay, good. Yes, yes, I can almost smell it now. They're very good at getting off the bus.

Speaker 2:

Check-in took a little bit and we had a dinner that nobody had time to get ready for, but it was okay. I think it's been a minute since Mike has or maybe Mike hasn't been yet with a group like that. It does take sandals a minute to check in.

Speaker 1:

I understand that Several rooms at the same time, but they had nothing ready, nothing.

Speaker 2:

There was nothing ready, wasn't a single thing ready.

Speaker 1:

They knew we were all getting off the bus.

Speaker 2:

They knew we were all getting on the plane. They knew we were getting off the bus. They all expected when us for us to get there.

Speaker 1:

They knew we had 45 minutes to get to the thing, but then when we got there they just all strolled out there. It was an hour and a half we sat there. Oh for check-in In 85 degrees weather.

Speaker 2:

And you have, it's an open-air lobby. Now, the lobby was gorgeous.

Speaker 3:

Oh, it's beautiful, it's awesome, and they had these reindeer that.

Speaker 2:

Landry said Sam sells them. They're like these crystal looking Christmas trees. Oh yeah, yeah, I want those. Okay, Landry say, yeah, those are at Sam's. I was like, okay, I gotta go to Sam's, I haven't checked yet.

Speaker 1:

They were extremely nice people.

Speaker 2:

It was a beautiful. Every inch of this property is, hands down, gorgeous. It's absolutely gorgeous. Now, I kind of made a list here so I could stay on task and not get off. So we've talked about these things.

Speaker 1:

So the first thing at this resort oh, is that all we're gonna do about the check-in? You're not gonna do nothing.

Speaker 3:

Well, what else does this say?

Speaker 2:

about the check-in you wanna say Mike.

Speaker 1:

It's just not good, I'm sorry. So how did you really feel about it?

Speaker 3:

I wanna complain more about it, it was just well here's the deal.

Speaker 2:

Mike has two. If there's two things about Mike that absolutely will send him through the roof, angry and mad is, first and foremost, heat. If he's hot, he is angry, he's in a bad mood and he's gonna complain. You're gonna get him. If you leave him sitting in the heat with no relief, he's going to start letting everybody know it. Then number two is a crowd.

Speaker 1:

So this is where Mike struggles with Disney is the heat and the crowd, and it wasn't just. We had a group of like 20 or 30 something people, I don't know, I think.

Speaker 2:

I was like 16.

Speaker 1:

Whatever, but there was guests there mingled in with us. And they were having to wait the same amount of time you would think they would go.

Speaker 2:

they knew who we were, they should have assisted those guests first, but they sat there and sat there. It was the equal opportunity Like why don't?

Speaker 1:

you come get these people Now there is a bar and they do bring you drinks. Mike, did you not get your were there working.

Speaker 2:

I'm not gonna sit there and just start pounding down drinks they bring you drinks when you sit down, and I'll take a sip or two of it because, first of all, you're thirsty. I drink her, but then there's a bar right there and the lobby bar is a very active part of this entire resort Morning, noon and night. The lobby bar is a place to be Best bar on property. It is so, but it's very, very, very hot and sure of sound. At some point, me and Mike were laying on the beach and I looked over and there was Satan laying beside me just laid back enjoying the heat, tanning it was.

Speaker 1:

it was that hot, it was only like 85, 88, whatever. But it said like the feel like temperature at some point in time was like 101, 103.

Speaker 2:

Whoa and the average temperature in Curacao is in between 82 and 89 degrees year round. In December is the cool season. That's unbelievable Thanks. I loved it.

Speaker 3:

I loved everything about it. I think I would enjoy it.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So the one thing I want to talk about this resort, first and foremost, because if anybody has looked at Sandals, royal Curacao, like I did online with photos, all the things you're thinking that beach is not attractive, I'm not going to like this, I don't want to go. If you feel that way, I'm going to tell you you are completely wrong. I was completely wrong. That is a fabulous speech.

Speaker 1:

I don't know how sandals, how they can get away with taking. You can't take any better pictures than what they take, but he just does not look.

Speaker 2:

It doesn't do it justice. Yeah, their photos is not doing any justice whatsoever and they can't do any better.

Speaker 1:

That's, it is what it is. Yeah, I don't know. It looks great in person.

Speaker 2:

I don't know. I think they could do a little better. They should describe it a little differently. Take it from a different angle, because the angle they're taking it on, you see from above what looks like this tiny beach with this little boardwalk out in the water that stretches and it just looks like this little tiny beach area. It's really big, okay, and it stretches. You can walk it. You can walk all the way down, just off property from sandals as a marina and there's a restaurant there called Boga 19 that you should walk it on there. Go eat. It's not included, but you can go down there, go eat, but you can step up on the boardwalk down there and walk all the way back up through the water, back up into sandals.

Speaker 1:

That boardwalk is only about maybe 40 yards off the beach. It just runs all the way across the beach in front of it. But that water it's like 40, 50 foot deep right there at the boardwalk. Sure is.

Speaker 2:

And you need to wear shoes because the boardwalk has this texture on it that makes it non-slippery.

Speaker 1:

It wasn't hot but my feet couldn't handle it. I was like I gotta put my shoes on that whole country. You need shoes.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

It's a jagged every home.

Speaker 2:

The beach itself. You didn't need shoes. Every now and then there's a lot of coral. Yeah, every now and then you'd step on a piece of coral, but for the most part it was fine. The sand is soft and you sink in it.

Speaker 1:

It's hard to walk in.

Speaker 2:

Kind of like Hawaii but not as deep as Hawaii. Yeah, it was fantastic. And then all the little bent trees and the palm trees it's pictures, it's just what you see, in the picture All over the beach. The tons of chairs with little cabanas over that are absolutely included in the price. You don't pay extra. It's just first come, first serve. So if you want to chair under a shade that you can get that.

Speaker 1:

This resort was at 91% capacity. It looked like a ghost town. It looked like a ghost town no way.

Speaker 2:

We love that.

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, it's so spread out.

Speaker 2:

Also down on this beach. You've got a bar, you've got a restaurant there's multiple restaurants You've got live music, you've got the dive shop. It was all right there, just lined up on that beach, but you were just steps from your room. The rooms were just right behind us, so I didn't.

Speaker 1:

I ran back to the room a lot.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I didn't walk a long ways to get to this beach. I don't think there's another beach at another sandals, or beach.

Speaker 3:

It's like that close, that is this close, and they have bikes. That's nice.

Speaker 2:

The grill would be similar, but for the most part the grill was even further.

Speaker 1:

And they had these big old, huge fat bottom seat bicycles sitting around everywhere and you could just jump on them and ride them anywhere you want to ride.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and then, just when you get off, park it and walk away from it. But then you get idiot people that park them right in the middle of the path, right in the middle of the walkway, put it off. They don't park right in front of you.

Speaker 1:

They'll ride right up in the path, drop the bike off, get off and walk away, and you have to move them out of the way. Sorry.

Speaker 2:

No, you're fine. But you know, just kind of top off this beach conversation, here is the look. It's not an island that sits out there. It's almost like you're just kind of back into what you would call entering the inlet area, because you're not all the way in it. You're just at the opening of the inlet, okay, but with that boardwalk it's knocking the waves back so like a bath they were. They were doing diving lessons right there in that water because it was easy water, it was deep water. They were. People were learning to paddleboard. I've seen people try to paddleboard at beaches oh gee, and the waves just knock them over.

Speaker 1:

You have no chance to figure it out, no way.

Speaker 2:

There were people snorkeling, there were people doing.

Speaker 1:

They have the little trampolines in the water, so it was just so amazing Massive catamarans coming in and picking up, picking up, going, I guess, on island routes to her, but they were huge catamarans and they come flip around right there at that at that boardwalk and back into the boardwalk.

Speaker 3:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

And you see the water and there's no waves and there would be boats going back because they're going back into that inlet to the marina.

Speaker 2:

We saw all kinds of boats going back through their boats, motor powered, and then catamarans, all the things. So it was it's y'all. It's a fantastic beach. I have to say, going in, with how I went in, I did not think I was going like this resort and I've come out. This is my favorite sandals. Property hands down. That's amazing to hear you say that.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, you were doing a video in our agent group on Facebook, a live video of the beach and everything you said.

Speaker 2:

I actually like this more than Jamaica and I did my jaw hit the floor, because we know how much you love Jamaica and we're going to compare that in just a minute, because there is a negative to this resort and we're going to talk about it and if anybody from sandals is listening. You know y'all need to pay attention and I kind of have a theory on this. But I'm not going to say the theory in the podcast because I don't think it's appropriate and I don't want to be insensitive. But I do have a theory as to why this complaint that we're going to have is what it is, but we'll go there in a minute before you go, something else you still on the beach. I'm going to go to the other side. Okay, there we go. Yeah, so there is another side to this beach. That is out on the open ocean side. But you can't swim this beach, and you can't because it is full of rocks, big rocks, corals, like coral.

Speaker 1:

It's very rugged, very, you know that's where I'm right. No very raw, did you hear me yeah?

Speaker 2:

What show is that?

Speaker 1:

Walking Dead when the dead deals with coral.

Speaker 2:

Okay, but yeah, it's impossible and there's no scraping that often create in a beach.

Speaker 1:

It's just absolutely wrong, so raw it's so neat.

Speaker 2:

You could not stand on that barefoot and you just can't. You even going to go out there and step on those rocks, which you're not supposed to. You're going to need to choose, are we okay? I?

Speaker 3:

don't know, I need to cough a little bit, go for it. Thanks Okay.

Speaker 2:

So but it's beautiful and beautiful sites, and when you get on the other far, right, it's like you're in a desolate island and you. There's beach leading up to the edge like that.

Speaker 1:

You can walk in it if you want to.

Speaker 2:

But you're, if you get off in that water, you better have some shoes on. I'm not sure you're supposed to get off.

Speaker 1:

No, but I mean, there's nothing stopping right. There's no gates, there are signs.

Speaker 2:

I mean we walked right up to it photos and things like that, like we could put our hands and our feet in the water if we wanted to, but we didn't have shoes on. We wrote that because it's sand in front of it. It's just that when you get to the edge now, it's a problem, it's crystal blue water. Yeah. And you could see the coral sticking up and the temperature was perfect and we saw or Mike did my glasses wouldn't see so many fish in that water.

Speaker 1:

Oh yeah.

Speaker 2:

He saw a lionfish.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, lionfish and it was a bunch of I don't know, silverfish, probably two, three foot wide and a bunch of little bit of yellow ones too. Oh yeah.

Speaker 2:

I could see the yellow ones, but so out on the other beach side is where they've got the Awa Seaside Beachfront bungalows pushed up against the water. So let's move to the rooms. So, first of all, the most stunning room at this resort is the Awa Seaside Beachfront bungalow. If you want to go somewhere and escape and not have to see another person your entire time and have a butler catering to every need, it's a pretty thing, this is your room. They are absolutely incredible. I did post a video on the Main Street Travel social media pages. Any of them go look, it's there. You walk in its own little unit. It is a bungalow. You are not attached to another building and you do not share a room with another building, but you walk in the door, which is gorgeous. The plants, the flowers, the flowers and the birds in Curacao are incredible. Those birds were so vocal, these little bit of yellow birds that look like hummingbirds, and they stayed in pairs, they had a mate and they were always in pairs of two and they had the most beautiful little tweets you ever heard. I really enjoyed the birds at this resort. You hear birds, you don't pay attention to Curacao. They make sure you hear them. You know they're there. five foot long iguanas all over the property Whoa, and most sandals resorts or beaches resort, it's cats, but sandals and beaches that's as big as you, dana, my and they just look at you. Sandals and beaches does their best to have a natural form of bug control. Sure, I want to hear or it.

Speaker 1:

I don't remember any bugs?

Speaker 2:

I don't, that's amazing. Not a single bug. I don't remember swatting anything out of my face. No flies, nothing. But this always seaside, beach, beachfront bungalow. You walk into the single unit building. It's not attached to nor shared with anyone else. You have your the butler's pantry is first, and then you walk into the room table, two chairs, king size bed, bathroom, separated shower closet. But the back wall of this room completely opens the expanse of the room. It's as big as maybe a three car garage door. If there was a garage door that would fit three cars. That's about how far open that that wall comes. You step out onto your deck with your own private pool, and this is a large pool. The pool extends the length of your building and then also a soaking tub. You also have a trampoline. You know the little thing you lay on, not a real trampoline like jumping, it's the relaxing trampoline, two chairs, and your view is that ocean, it's that beach in the ocean, the very front bungalow.

Speaker 1:

You don't want to request that one, because you can see the main pool and the main pool can see you from the people out on the end and you got buttholes that go out there at the end and take pictures back.

Speaker 2:

You got weirdos who go out stay a good distance away, but they're still taking pictures of it.

Speaker 1:

You don't know what you're going to get a picture of, because it's very secluded. Yes, it's our own little private world.

Speaker 2:

Like if you, if you want to remain completely clothed clothing less the entire time in that bungalow, you could. You absolutely could. It does come with a butler. Therefore, if you want every single meal brought to you, including butches, you can do that. The rooms that have a butler. This specific room is the only room at the resort. You also can take advantage of a little mini Cooper and drive yourself around the island four of them out all the time. So this is like the dream room and this is the most expensive room, but this room will stay booked out more than anything else at that resort. They will stay booked solid and they were booked solid. Amazing, so one that we got to see they were rushing us because they were cleaning it Sure, so we could get in and somebody check in.

Speaker 1:

It's actually the people. We did it that night. We that day we took a tour of it. That next day you went over there in front of it taking pictures of that pool.

Speaker 2:

We didn't see that very front one we saw, I think the second or third one back. Okay, but there were people in it.

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, you could see the doors. We saw going in and out the doors.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so that is the room at Sandals World Curacao, the next room type that everybody's going to want at Sandals World Curacao. You guys remember I talked about the little private island in the heart shape and eight. Those were incredible.

Speaker 1:

Another one Jenna snuck into. Okay, let me clarify in case anybody from Sandals and Beaches is listening.

Speaker 2:

I did not enter a suite. I did not enter. These are called the Curacao Island bungalows. There's eight of them situated around a heart shaped pool. The pool is. It's wide, it's wider than a lazy river, but it's kind of like a lazy river. It's not like a big, huge square pool right. So it's in the shape of a heart, the pool itself surrounding this little island. I did not enter a bungalow.

Speaker 1:

No, there's, there's open spots around there.

Speaker 2:

They were all full, but there's this little break in the bushes and it's steps and you go down into the pool. I did not get into the pool, I put my ankles in the pool. What steps are?

Speaker 1:

There's no point to that spot being there. There's no walkway to that from the inside. Where they're at, they can come out Like if you're in that pool. You could come up them stairs and go out of the whole area, but there's it's only an access for that where you went in at Right. It's the whole point it's.

Speaker 2:

It's you know how you walk up to a pool and you've got the steps and little silver bar and you hold the handle bar and you step. That's what it was. But it was not attached to any of the bungalows, it was just kind of in the bushes. And I looked over and I saw it and I was like huh. So I went over and I got photos of the pool in the outside.

Speaker 1:

There was nobody out there, we snuck in one of them. We stayed two nights there.

Speaker 2:

They were all booked up, but there was nobody outside, which kind of surprised me, because if I had that room, dude, that's where I'm staying. Forget the beach, it's beautiful and all that. So this is what I'm talking about. Y'all, we need eight couples to go in for the same dates. We probably have to push this out way into 2025 to get all the rooms and just have your own little party right there.

Speaker 1:

There are so many room categories in this resort that the except the one we were in that you could have just stayed. You would have never had to leave right you had your own pool, you had your own, so can tell you had your own walkout. Wherever you had your own beach, you had whatever. Everything was like that, except that one when it comes to the same thing.

Speaker 2:

We had a luxury room right luxury luxury club is not going to have the butler. You could still order room service and club right, um. But when you have any room type of sandals and beaches that has its own private pool, like that or a private Like little village area, that normally comes with a butler and that's where you could just hold up in your little spot wouldn't leave an escape reality for however many days you're going to stay there. They're incredible. It's beautiful. That area was beautiful. It was quiet, but, man, you get eight couples together and go do that. Yeah, you all call me, because that would be a cool, cool party area. Yeah, I have a client who's looking to book the South Seas Rondeval village at South Coast and I'm like, how many people you got coming? Let's, let's make this a party. Y'all don't understand how these, how these little villages are put together. It's so cool, it's like your own little city right so and food is brought into you.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, so I mean I'll go, I guess I'll consider it, y'all call me.

Speaker 2:

Um, our room was one step up from the lead in room, so the lead in room here is called the Carissa luxury room and it's a garden view room, but you can see a slice of the ocean.

Speaker 1:

The nicest room I've been in so in most sandals resorts.

Speaker 2:

If it says ocean view, which this one does not, usually you could see the ocean over the tree, through the bushes and across the roof around the corner. This room has a slice of an ocean view from it. Our room, however, was still a luxury level room, was a full on beach front view. We were looking over the roof where the beach was, of the restaurant in the bar of the beach, but we had a sun sheet. Luxury beach front room. We could have thrown a rock out into the water if we needed to we could have easily thrown a rock and hit the water from from our balcony. These, this resort, in these rooms, all face the water, perfect for sunset. And I have the absolutely most gorgeous photo when we first got to our room and opened up. It took my breath away with that sunset coming into that room and I have that photo. You don't get beach front rooms and a luxury level category at sandals and beaches period. This resort offers it. These rooms also have a wow factor, so like when you walk in it's like wow, this room is so nice, isn't that beautiful?

Speaker 1:

sunset.

Speaker 2:

Mike posted and it's on the main street travel Facebook page a what do you call that? A time lapse of the sunset from from our room. But from the balcony I have a picture from inside the room, but all the rooms at sandals row. Curious how you walk in and it's like oh wow, this is beautiful. Love this room clean, even more so than sandals Duns River, which is a hard thing to beat no way sandals Duns River. You walked in here like, oh yeah, these are nice sandals. Curious how your wow, this is nice. It is a huge wow factor to it. The decoration the rooms are big now the mattress needs some attention.

Speaker 1:

I don't know who made that decision.

Speaker 2:

I felt like I was sleeping on concrete block. I was back on Delta in that in that seat that may as well have been yes, a concrete block. Those beds were not good. If Mike's complaining about a hard bed unit and I'm the type that you give me a sleep number, my number is like zero and a half I like to sink and be surrounded in in in like swaddled in the mattress and the covers. Mike doesn't like that. Mike likes a more firm mattress. This was like. This was like concrete, like my lower back going home. my lower back hurt oh whoa back hurt.

Speaker 3:

It was bad.

Speaker 2:

So, and I heard other people talking about.

Speaker 1:

I don't know if I stayed another night in that bed.

Speaker 2:

No, I don't think I could have either, and I think you can request a pillow top and I think Tara did what, but it never.

Speaker 1:

I have that. That's that I'll in request. Yeah, nothing ever comes to you.

Speaker 2:

So needless to say here y'all what that's all we're going to talk about in the rooms. The rooms are fantastic. Whenever you're standing at a Sandals or beaches resort, you want club level.

Speaker 1:

Everything is international, by the way. Yeah, no plugs.

Speaker 2:

Yes, well, there were two plugs in our room that were American plugs. Everything else was international. That's good to know you could have gone to the front desk and got a converter.

Speaker 1:

You know you could not. Did know what they said. We're going to bring one of the room. They never bought it, so I did it for four. Keep in mind.

Speaker 2:

Pay attention to what we're saying. Somebody requested a pillow top mattress and they didn't get it. We requested the plugs.

Speaker 3:

They never came because we had something a travel planner should advise you of right.

Speaker 2:

We had two plugs in that room for his cell phone, my cell phone, his watch, my hair drawer, my flat iron there's their iron and ironing board worked off the American plug.

Speaker 1:

That had one in the bathroom.

Speaker 2:

So it was. It was a challenge. We made it work to bring adapters. Yeah, everywhere there's plugs, everywhere I'm going to bring a strip, but yeah, it's the weird, it's not, it's the big round, yeah so it just kind of shocked me for them to have an iron sit in there and it went on the American plug like there's two in this room Right. And now you go make me use this on here too. So, whatever I'm going to go, make me use this on here, mike, let's move to the food.

Speaker 1:

So the food here, with one exception, was phenomenal.

Speaker 2:

It was very, very good. It was very good buffet breakfast was. Everything was good. Any sandals or beaches, wow.

Speaker 1:

But the buffet room is not air conditioned so it was hard to sit in there and eat. It wasn't the. It was not air conditioned. The first night, the second time, I went back in there because we went to butchers for breakfast instead. So they can shut them, and I guess it just been a what mood they're in.

Speaker 2:

Well, so you've got a butch's steakhouse here, you got Vincent's, you got Zuka, you have the. I call it Iola, like Mama's family Iola, but I think it was a Ola or something. It's a Greek restaurant. Now this is open air, sitting out with oh, the breeze. Here is incredible, constant breeze and curious. So we're talking about all this hot weather.

Speaker 1:

I think it makes it bearable.

Speaker 2:

The breeze absolutely was like this is nice because it got really hot, but when that breeze was going, it was like this is incredible, it was fantastic.

Speaker 1:

It's still in the 80s. At night time it was, it didn't raise much temperature, but the wind there, just man.

Speaker 2:

they got a constant good breeze there, so we really enjoyed that, but the food, so that Greek restaurant is open air outside. We didn't do that one, there was the Petra, and then they had a sushi sushi bar.

Speaker 1:

So then they had food trucks.

Speaker 2:

I believe they had eight restaurants here, total Several restaurants, and of course they were all empty all the time. The, the, the. We did Vincent's, which was European, very good Something there's a word for it, like a fancy word that means they take it and just kind of fusion, european fusion, it was very good.

Speaker 1:

People were awesome.

Speaker 2:

Yep the buffet something about that.

Speaker 1:

That are our bartender.

Speaker 2:

Mike tried caviar.

Speaker 1:

Mike.

Speaker 2:

It was a caviar or something it was like olives, though I think.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it was like mixed with something else. It was good Very good Proud of you.

Speaker 2:

I ordered two or three things off the menu. Everything was delicious. The desserts were delicious. The dessert there was best. It was like a vanilla cream something. There was other things, but that vanilla cream thing was like oh, it's delicious.

Speaker 1:

Everything was good we didn't eat at Zuka.

Speaker 2:

We did not eat at the Greek place, but Tara did and she said it was fantastic. I imagine it would be. The food trucks is where we ate for lunch and one there was like three food trucks and then a bar. Mike did the barbecue. It's hard to beat Tennessee barbecue.

Speaker 1:

It was okay. It was barbecue out of a can, I'm sure.

Speaker 2:

However, I got bruschetta. It was like a little Italian thing, bruschetta with shrimp. It was delicious and, of all the people on the resort, I believe the lady's name was Jamie. It was spelled J-E-I-M-M-E, I believe. Awesome, she was fantastic. She was everywhere. She was like here, take the shrimp, put it here on top of it, combine this, combine that, put it to your nose, smell the bread, because you could smell the garlic. She was wonderful.

Speaker 1:

We could get down with a plate, she was there. We could get down with a drink, she was there. She made that meal and that was not her job.

Speaker 2:

It wasn't, but she made those lunches very, very enjoyable. Butch's Steakhouse was a huge disappointment, oh no.

Speaker 1:

Every meal.

Speaker 2:

Really Breakfast.

Speaker 1:

So wow.

Speaker 2:

We ate there three times one dinner, two breakfasts.

Speaker 3:

So it was air conditioned.

Speaker 1:

Because it was air conditioned.

Speaker 2:

Gotcha and it was empty and I feel like now it was kind of empty for a reason. But the first night we ate there we had a 9 pm seating. Because it's hard to get into, you've got to make sure you've got reservations. Talk to your favorite makeshift travel planner. We know all the things we're going to make sure you get seated. You might not want to get seated after this, but I'm sure this will improve. Butch's the food was mediocre. I ordered a medium steak. They brought me a well done steak but it took so long I was not going to reorder.

Speaker 1:

I had primary ebb and it was. That was their signature food.

Speaker 2:

But I think what made this meal what it was for us was the service. So if we have a complaint about this resort, it is the service, and I am not sure that I could prepare a client for the level, or lack thereof, of the service. And Butch's was extremely given that Butch's was the worst across the entire property because service lacked in every single department. everywhere Service lacked and Butch's was the worst, and Butch's is supposed to be the prom restaurant at all Sandals and beaches resorts. Butch's is named for Gordon Butch Stewart, who was the founder of Sandals and Beaches resorts, and it was yeah, I know.

Speaker 1:

It was hard to do. I mean, the drinks were never. We never hardly got drinks. They didn't do refills, you wouldn't get forks. Nobody would come back.

Speaker 2:

They would come to a table. What do you want to drink? And they didn't say that. But you know, can I get you an order? It would take. All I drink y'all know is is Coke. By the time the Coke got to me, it was the water down. The ice was melted. It took forever to get a drink. Then nobody ever came back to refill it.

Speaker 1:

They're Jamaican blue mountain coffee Great all over the resort, but inside Butch's it was horrible. It was like motor oil, oh my God.

Speaker 2:

They would take the order and someone else would bring the order to the table. The girl who initially was supposed to be the person serving our table. We never saw her. There was one little guy running around. You could tell he was new, you could tell he was training and he was just kind of doing a little bit of everything. He was good, he's the one that refilled my drink. Wow, now look, the bar is right there, five feet from our table. We asked for a drink. We asked for hot sauce.

Speaker 3:

The bar. The bar.

Speaker 2:

The girl went to the kitchen and came back out with nothing because the bar was right there. So she eventually.

Speaker 1:

No, she told the dude to get the and he she just left the bar and she told the dude to get in. He had to walk back into the bar and get it.

Speaker 2:

And it's not friendly service either. It's not service with a smile, right Okay?

Speaker 1:

I don't think that's the resort, though that's.

Speaker 2:

I think it's Kira Sal, I think it's the island and I think they need some serious, serious training on service there. Every where we went with exception to Jamie was like this Everywhere we went, every restaurant, every bar front desk.

Speaker 1:

There was no smiles, there was no how you doing the front desk was better than the rest of them.

Speaker 2:

Housekeeping, you name it, you would, it was it was almost like it was almost like well, I guess I have to, it's my job. That was the attitude you got when you were, when you approached anything or anybody for something.

Speaker 1:

You're, you're at the resort, you're coming out of your room, you're walking down the hallways. There's two, two people, two sandals employees coming down walking towards you.

Speaker 2:

Nope, you better get out of the way, or they're going to run you over. They just they keep, they don't budge.

Speaker 1:

No, no, you're the one that's moving to the side and scooting over and squinching so you don't bump shoulders or something, if you have to move there, if they have to move their car.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, that is the exact opposite of my experiences at the two sandals beaches, so when we're talking about that.

Speaker 2:

I loved Kira Sal and more than Jamaica, that's. The one exception is the service, because the people in Jamaica are absolutely thrilled to help you and do whatever you want. Ask if you need to refill food or Taj, taking us off the side of the mountain. Let's go back Right, but in Kira Sal it was just really different.

Speaker 1:

We had a bartender that I went to. It was up by the food trucks and I asked him for I just a beer and a diet coke. It's like okay. So I went back two or three times. They give you these little bitty beers. Jenna had the big cup she was filling, but I would ask him for a diet coke and he's going to have ice with the diet coke bottle. I can't give you that he can't give me the bottle. I was like okay, well, I understand there has to be some sort of rule or whatever, but just no, no explanation or nothing. But then that I asked Jenna when we were about to leave it's like why don't you go up there and see if you can get a beer? She walked up hey, honey, how are you doing All night? We saw him later on that night at Vincent's and he was nice again to her and just kind of really short with me.

Speaker 3:

So I think it's just their, you know. Yeah, but I mean, you're paying this much money to go to a sandals number. Airfare is a little high. It's higher than going to Jamaica and this is not what you want to pay for.

Speaker 2:

So that's a huge training opportunity, because that's a big part of the experience is the service that you get while you're there in this amazingly gorgeous destination.

Speaker 1:

I think that's the benefit. You expect more. They can fix these things. They can't fix a bad resort or trash resort or ugly resort that resort is. It trumps everything that you know the bad service.

Speaker 2:

Another thing is, when you go in as a travel agent and they know you're a travel agent, you usually even get even better service because, their job is to impress you. So you will bring your clients down and they didn't care. And if they knew? If they knew, because not all everybody knew that we were travel agents. When we first got there they knew in the slow that check in was an hour and a half and when we that first night at dinner the food was good, the service was slow. What not? But what if they want? When they don't? If they know you're a travel agent and they're treating you nicer, what are they doing to a person who's not a travel agent Right in there? So that would be my concern. But service is a hard hard sell for me on this resort. It's so disappointing. This resort was incredible, y'all just oh. And they're building a rendezvous village on the backside of the resort. Now, those rooms are not gonna be oceanfront. They will come with butlers and private plunge pools. It's gorgeous. They've been done yet and it's gorgeous gosh, but just y'all the service but I would still go back tomorrow. We didn't. We didn't experience any kind of butler service here. Maybe that was different, maybe that would be the difference in whatever, but if your luxury or club level at least go club level.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, we did see butlers Coping people and some of these butlers were amazingly one was just like a spot was weird yeah he went. Guy got on the bus as we were leaving and he had food. Apparently you can't have food, yeah they took away from him. The butler comes running up there and stands there and holds waits for him to finish his food so he could take his plates off. Yeah, so butler service might be the way to go there.

Speaker 2:

Maybe we just need to research and ask more questions into that. Maybe we need to go.

Speaker 3:

I think we need to go experience.

Speaker 2:

If our all the Oasis side beachfront bungalow yeah, okay, but with any sandals or beaches resorts for those of y'all who are still here listening to us after we set 30 minutes and where we, at 54 54, so it's in our. I told y'all which we try best At any sandals and beaches resorts go at least club level because you get room service included. You get the, the robes and the slippers, which one of the travel agents that was with us.

Speaker 1:

Complaining about.

Speaker 2:

She. Just this one was fine, she was like I really just wish they could put a robe and slippers in every room. It is a benefit of club level. So if you get out of a shower and you want to sit on your balcony and you're sweating and it's hot and you're trying to cool down before you get dressed for dinner, you want a robe to sit on your balcony and that's a nice feature to have in a room, but it's it's club level. It is a feature of club level. So if you want to have more pampering and more service and more amenities, you go club level. Luxury is fine, but you don't get the stocked fridge. You get your basic juices, coax and wine and a couple of beers. But you don't get that fully stocked liquor bar club level is where the rom and the vodka and the gin and all the things anything you ask appears in your room and they'll say what do you want us to stock it with? that you can tell them, in addition to the coax and the beers and the wines and whatnot. So club level is where you want to be. Pay the extra for club level y'all. The room service alone is worth it. The check-in is worth it. So instead of checking in the front desk, you check in at the club level lounge, and the lounge was outside by the bus. We could have went in a nice big, air-conditioned room, could have sat there with drinks and snacks.

Speaker 3:

We're not afraid and then checked in. No so.

Speaker 2:

I wanted that so go club level or higher, it's just, it's where you want to be. Pay the extra, y'all do club level and if you can't afford it, guess what? You can book sandals and beaches all the way through December of 2025. Right now it is a $98 deposit, but be warned exactly 21 days later You're going to get charged an additional 302 dollars for a full deposit of $400 Just say 400, so if you can pay, $400 deposit from the get-go. Pay the $400 because it is an auto charge. It's not something that they approve, and all this stuff. It automatically comes out of your bank account. So $98 down, then 302 is going to auto charge to your card 21 days later. So keep that in mind. So just put the $400 down, if you can, and go club level book out in the future, because your final payment is not Do until 45 days prior to travel. You could essentially lay away this. That's perfect. A mainstream travel planner is going to work with you and remind you. We can set you up every month Reminders for you to authorize a payment every month, so you could work these out to where they could be like 50 or 100 bucks a month. And then at the end of 2025, in December, you too can go in cool season in Curacao, enjoy the breeze and the birds, but outside of service y'all.

Speaker 1:

This resort is phenomenal if we had to pay full price, would you and we had to go today and we're paying the full price on everything would you go?

Speaker 2:

So let's give full disclosure here. We went down on a fam, a travel agent fam. These are never fully free, but we did not pay for this room. So to get full disclosure, we were invited to come test out this property so we could come back to y'all and talk to you about it. Okay, I'll set a service. This resort is phenomenal. Like I said, I didn't think I was gonna like it. It is still my favorite sandals resort. I feel like service at sandals and beaches Across the board. Every last one of them has suffered since post COVID everybody has. I have a theory. I don't think it's appropriate to talk about it on this podcast. I'm not going to say it, but service needs to be refocused on, retrained and make sure there's somebody there Harping on service at every resort across the board and make them do it, because if I had paid full price to be at Sandals World, curacao, the air was expensive. Luckily we got the discount. These rooms are expensive. It is Curacao, it is a newer resort, it's a gorgeous resort, it's beautiful. But had I paid full price and gone down there without service, they would have met a very different Janna on property. Absolutely I would have lit them up because it was. It was just not good.

Speaker 1:

No, I didn't see. I mean we split. We were in the front, a lot around the front desk. I don't think I saw anybody complaining. Nope.

Speaker 3:

Everybody look happy.

Speaker 1:

So I think whatever we had was whatever we had, I don't know. But I would go back and Harvey, that was, it's just just the view, just just the Heavy vegetation. You felt like you were in the. I don't know what you felt like, because you're in the desert, but then you had yet its tropical. Yeah, but then you have all these plants, you have two can birds flying around you?

Speaker 2:

and let's add this one, because you know I'm told occasionally by a few different people that I'm travel agents. Listen to this podcast and I'm gonna say this if you are a travel agent and you were invited to go to a Fam of any type and your own property at no cost to you and all you can do is run your mouth with Negativity and complaints the whole damn time, wow, you have no business being invited ever again on another fam, and our group was full of them. Oh, we didn't get turned down service. We can't get a reservation to butchers. Isn't that why we're here?

Speaker 1:

There's a lot about the turn down service. How about you?

Speaker 3:

take advantage of your TA raid, and why don't you go pay and you go down there and ask for your turn down service?

Speaker 2:

Here's what. Here's my theory on that. This is what's gonna happen, and and this woman's personality was was prom for this because I Bit my tongue big time, because it was not my place to correct her, it was the mediums place to correct her and that's none of my business. Towards the end, I did say something. I was like you got to stop. Well, why do I have to be at the airport? Why do I have to leave here three hours? Dude, we're 45 minutes from the airport. What are you gonna do if there's a wreck out here? Because there's these little two-way and very, very crowded roads. There's no back roads around this Like what's gonna happen if you're in a wreck? Our bus driver was waving to his friend and the cars in front of us we're at a dead stop and I was like, hey, dude, stop, stop, stop, stop and he looked up and stopped.

Speaker 1:

He was on his phone. Yeah, love that.

Speaker 2:

Keep in mind You're not America, yeah, so they do things a little different, but you know it's it's just if you're there on somebody else's. Okay. She was mostly complaining about not getting a reservation to Butch's State House. That was the. She complained about all kinds of stuff, but I heard this one over and over and over and this is what I'm gonna say to a travel agent if you are ever on a fam to any destination whatsoever and you can't get this, this or this, Imagine sitting at your desk back home working and you've got clients in destination traveling and they call you up or they text you I'm just so disappointed I can't get into Butch's State House. I can't get into it. We're only here for three nights and I can't get in it's book. Solid, da, da, da, da. And you're like oh, I'm really sorry, because Butch's is a fantastic. It wasn't for us at Curacao, but it is a fantastic restaurant. Just need a little work on service down there, y'all, that's all. It is just a little work on service. But then you're sitting here and you know your clients disappointed and you're getting back to work and you go into your vendors Facebook group page to see a group of travel agents sitting and enjoying a meal at Butch's that night. Well, my client didn't get into Butch's because there's 13 travel agents.

Speaker 1:

Small little spot so that's.

Speaker 2:

That was my whole point to her is, if this were your client and you were sitting at home and you couldn't she couldn't get into Butch's because a group of travel agents are sitting there. Essentially, you're complaining because you couldn't get into Butch's because all of the guests of the resorts are in there. That could have been your guests, and when you take up that spot and then want to run your mouth and complain whatnot? It was very inappropriate. It made me really mad I. Cannot stand. I cannot stand a travel agent who has zero professionalism period. You don't go on fam's For vacation. That's not what we do, y'all. And if you are working with a travel agent, or you are being what do you call it recruited or whatever by a travel agent who is selling you on the free vacation and the free trips and the discounted trips, it's never free. That is not the travel agent you want to work with. That is not why we go to these places. Is it a perk of our job? Absolutely. But do you know how much sandals and beaches, resorts we sell a lot?

Speaker 3:

a lot.

Speaker 2:

And the reason we sell a lot is because we go down, we look, we see, we experience they kick our butts down there.

Speaker 1:

We learn oh my gosh.

Speaker 2:

We walk so much on average on a sandals fam.

Speaker 3:

I bet we're watching walking four to five miles a day easy in the Heat, in the heat you have to be dressed for it.

Speaker 2:

You can't just show up in biker shorts. No that's totally inappropriate.

Speaker 1:

We don't need to go there, but let's let's digress Okay, cuz.

Speaker 2:

no, we'll save that for a different podcast. How's that so? Sandals curious out amazing, even with the service If we can figure out a workaround on the service and fix that and they'll fix it. And honestly, are you got to really speak up? Use the Gina, someone's gonna come in and fix things for you.

Speaker 1:

I use the Gina that talked about the lady out there and within minutes they the the manager of the food and whatever messes me back.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, because we were complimenting Jamie and then we complimented somebody else as well, but that's also. You can use the Gina sandals and beaches when there's a problem and y'all they do reply. The general management Is who is replying on those. Gina is basically what's up. So if anybody needs to know, it's basically what's happened. They give you a QR code upon arrival in in your room and you get connected to that chat with that resort through WhatsApp and and they absolutely reply and things can get fixed. Mike and I did not complain again. We were there as guests. We were invited. It was not our place to do so and we were not gonna take away from guests who are already there, right? right but that's it for us today. Y'all, kira Sal is absolutely incredible. I would go back. I say not, but I would, and I would just run my mouth about the service and get it fixed and enjoy the rest Of my trip. So I would, y'all know me.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I go back quickly. It's not Jamaica.

Speaker 2:

It's not Jamaica. It's a different experience. It's very different. It's very there. They're there, a culture that you know something else real quick that we saw Sandals, kira Sal, that you don't see at other sandals and other islands, white Caucasian employees, because you're in the Netherlands. You're in the Netherlands, that's right. So it was cool. And one guy who was with this super cool, he went with us. Alessio, he was a Worker there. He was from Milan, italy. Oh, yes and he had finished, he went to school in the Netherlands. Finished school, the sandals opportunity popped up for him and he took the job in Kira Sal.

Speaker 1:

So he was still in training. He was and he was very good. We really like there's hope.

Speaker 2:

There you go, all right, y'all. Well, that is it for us today on this episode of the LT podcast 30 minute Well episode. Yeah, yeah, next week we're gonna do another 30 minute episode. Fantastic, next week we're gonna go ahead and talk about Jollywood at Walt Disney World first, first year that they have done this event. We have a lot to say about it. Y'all do not want to miss it, and I'm probably gonna offend a few people in this one, so it happens, you don't say we look forward to it. No, all right, y'all have a great week. You, you, you you.

Trip to Sandals Royal Curious Owl
Issues With Miami, Praise for Curacao
Exploring the Sandals Resort in Curacao
Sandals Curacao Beach Resort Review
Luxury Rooms at Sandals World Curacao
International Plugs and Food Reviews
Disappointing Service at Butch's Steakhouse
Review of Sandals Curacao Resort
Alessio's Journey and Future Plans