Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Columbus Day Weekend Barbados Jazz Excursion 2018

A Jazz Excursion & Golf Weekend on the Beautiful Island of  Barbados

This year marks the 5th annual Columbus Day Weekend of the Barbados Jazz Excursion. 

Saxophonist Elan Trotman, executive producer and host of the Barbados Jazz Excursion, is a native of Barbados. He is well known as a composer, performer, teacher and recording artist. 

Trotman is also the founder of the Never Lose Your Drive Foundation – a Non-Profit which directly funds the Headstart Music Program. 

Headstart Music provides FREE weekly instrument instruction to students ages 7-11 on saxophone, trumpet, flute, clarinet, and percussion. All proceeds from the Jazz Excursion Weekend and Golf Tournament go towards tutor salaries, instrument maintenance, and supplies for the program. 

The Jazz Excursion host hotel is the Hilton Barbados Resort, and 35% of the hotel rooms have already been booked.  

Rooms can be secured with a two-night deposit, and guests can use the booking confirmation number to reserve concert tickets and pay later. 

This Years Jazz Excursion Lineup Includes:  

  • Najee - Grammy-nominated saxophonist and flutist
  • Maysa - Grammy-nominated Soul/Jazz/R&B Vocalist
  • Alex Bugnon - Renowned musician, composer, and bandleader
  • Karen Briggs - Violin (orchestral, gospel, R&B, Latin, new age, rock, hip-hop and several jazz styles)
  • Nestor Torres - Flute - Latin Grammy Award Winner 
  • Brian Bromberg - Bass (played on many Hollywood movie soundtracks)
  • Damon Williams - Comedian
  • Jeff Bradshaw - Trombone (known as a soul-jazz and hip-hop/funk innovator)
  • West Byrd - Musical Director
  • Nathan Mitchell - After Party Band

Charity Golf Tournament 
The practice rounds leading up to golf tournament day will be held at Royal Westmoreland and the Barbados Golf Club. The charity golf tournament will be held at the prestigious Sandy Lane Golf Club. 

Celebrities participating in the tournament include Major League Baseball Players Bronson Arroyo and Mike Jackson; NBA Player John Starks; World Long Drive Champ Maurice Allen; and Brian Lara (pictured) former West Indies Cricketer acknowledged as one of the greatest batsmen of all time.

Visit the site for info on accommodations, concert tickets, golf packages and more

Happy Travels,

Friday, April 13, 2018

Unique Hideaway on Edge of the Caribbean Sea

Yemaya Hideaway & Spa is a Eco-Luxury Hotel located right 
on the beach at the northern end of Little Corn Island, approximately 
50 miles off the eastern coast of Nicaragua in the Caribbean Sea. 

This "Off The Beaten Path" destination is not easy to reach, but that's what makes these tiny pieces of paradise special. 

Getting to Little Corn involves taking a turboprop plane from Managua, the capitol of Nicaragua, to Big Corn Island, and then there's a 30 minute boat ride. 

On this teeny tiny strip (less than 2 square miles) you will find very few tourists, no cars, golf carts and certainly no cruise ships. Walking on foot is the way to get around on Little Corn. There is no room for large hotel development, and all the beaches are public.

What you will find is an island of untouched nature, pristine white sandy beaches, healthy coral reefs, and homes painted in vivid Caribbean colors. Locals sell fresh food products from their homes, and also push wheelbarrels filled with products around the island. There are also a number of small local restaurants. 

Little Corn Island has a unique blend of Afro-Caribbean culture which is very different from Nicaragua.  The island was colonized by Britain rather than Spain. The population is less than 1,000, and the spoken languages are English, Creole, Spanish, Garifuna and Miskito - the local indigenous people.

Yemaya Island Hideaway & Spa celebrates the benevolent spirit of the Mother Goddess as an omnipresent, protective force; the Queen of the Seven Seas. 


Yemaya does everything possible to reduce their carbon footprint 

Good quality driftwood that washes up from the beach is used to make 
beautiful pieces of artwork and furniture. 

Guests will find glass water bottles in their rooms, and clothes are dried in the open air. All garbage is sorted, and the organic waste is used for garden compost. All glass, plastic and cans are sent to the mainland for recycling. 

Blend of Fresh, Local Flavors and Island Culture . . . 

Perfect temperatures, remarkable views, Caribbean breezes and soft island music all set the tone for the ultimate island dining experience.

Casual open-air thatched roof restaurant, set just above the Caribbean Sea, lets you to take in panoramic views while drinking and dining. 

Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served daily. Menu offerings include fresh seafood, free range chicken and beef, organic fruits and vegetables from our own garden with sauces and seasonings inspired by Little Corn Island.  

Drinks such as coconut water, fresh fruit and detox juices, smoothies and cocktails are all made fresh daily and are available throughout the day. For evening cocktails, you can visit the full-service bar and lounge in the restaurant or wander down to the beach bar. 

Find out more about this unique island and property

Happy Travels,

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

St Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival 2018

St Lucia Jazz & Arts Festival
May 6 - 13, 2018

Each year the St Lucia Jazz Festival offers venues in all parts of the island featuring a mix of free and paid concerts. 

The festival also highlights St Lucian arts, culture and cuisine. The final concert date this year is on Mother's Day with a major concert at Pigeon Island National Park.  

Here's this year's schedule:
MONDAY MAY 7, 2018

Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort @ 7:00 pm
Barbara Cadet 
Denys Baptiste


Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort @ 7:00 pm
Pauline Jean
Arnaud Dolmen


Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort @ 7:00 pm
Zara McFarlane
Etienne Mbappé and the Prophets


Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort @ 7:00 pm
Cameron Pierre
Luther Francois

Harbour Club, Rodney Bay @ 7:00 pm
Jazzmeia ‘Jazz’ Horn

FRIDAY MAY 11, 2018

Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort @ 7:00 pm
Carolyn Malachi
AZIZA, featuring Chris Potter, Dave Holland, Lionel Loueke and Eric Harland.

Harbour Club, Rodney Bay @ 7:00 pm
Jazzmeia ‘Jazz’ Horn

Royalton Saint Lucia Resort & Spa @ 7 PM & 11 PM
Lalah Hathaway


Royalton Saint Lucia Resort & Spa @ 7 PM & 11 PM
Alfredo Rodríguez

SUNDAY MAY 13, 2018

Pigeon Island National Landmark @ 2:00 pm
The Frantz Laurac Quartet
Ronald ‘Boo’ Hinkson & Friends
R+R=NOW with Robert Glasper, Terrace Martin, Christian Scott, Derrick Hodge, Taylor McFerrin and Justin Tyson

Visit the Jazz Festival site for ticket prices, along with info on the scheduled artists.

Happy Travels,

Monday, April 9, 2018

Timeless Elegance in Jamaica - Stay Longer and Save

Since 1950, Jamaica Inn in Ocho Rios has ranked among top luxury hotels in the Caribbean, and this small luxury hotel is as timeless today as it was in 1950. 

Having spent my honeymoon at Jamaica Inn decades ago, and returned for several visits afterwards, I highly recommend this property.

If you are yearning for vacation where you can truly get away from all the stress of your daily lives . . . 

There are only 48 intimate suites and cottages, no TVs, radios or clocks. On this secluded beach the sounds are from the gentle waves of the Caribbean Sea, tropical birds, and nightly music at dinner under the stars. 

You will be greeted warmly once you arrive, and after getting settled in you will be made to feel like one of the family as the staff attends to your every need. While this is small boutique luxury resort, the atmosphere is never stuffy and I would be describe it as laid back elegance. 

The waters on the secluded beach are calm, and the landscaped grounds are immaculate. Nature lovers will appreciate over 20 species of tropical birds which make their home at Jamaica Inn. 

There are a variety of suites and cottages 

In room amenities include air conditioning, beach towels, ceiling fan, complimentary Wi-Fi, hair dryer, mini fridges (stocked on request), phone, robes, safe, toiletries, and turndown service. 


In the open air restaurant Chef Maurice Henry changes the menu nightly featuring international cuisine infused with local Jamaican flavors. 

There is a dress code after 7 p.m., however guests have the option for less formal dress dining on your verandah or on the beach for all meals. Complimentary afternoon tea and light snacks are served daily on the cocktail terrace.  


Take advantage of The Ocean Spa at Jamaica Inn which offers a full menu of spa treatments sourced from local organic farmers. 

Now you can take advantage of FREE nights when you stay at least 4 nights May 1 thru Oct 31, 2018 

The longer you stay, the more free nights you earn and the more beach time you receive! This offer is available in all suites and cottages for single or double occupancy on a room-only basis.  

  • Stay 4 nights for the price of 3
  • Stay 7 nights for the price of 5
  • Stay 14 nights for the price of 10

And there's a September & October Bonus!
Stay during the months of September or October 2018 and receive BONUS food and beverage credits to use during your stay. All credits will be automatically applied to your reservation.

Visit the site for full details

Happy Travels

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Enjoy A Private Beach on Santiago Peninsula

Tucked away on a private beach on the Santiago Peninsula, the all-suite, all-inclusive Barceló Karmina is a AAA Four-Diamond resort with Mayan-inspired design. 

Peninsula de Santiago offers spectacular views of Manzanillo’s two bays - Manzanillo Bay from Santiago Bay, and is home to many fine hotels, condos and private homes. 

This 5-star hotel features 324 luxury suites with private terraces or balcony, and excellent views of either the tropical gardens or the sea.  

The premium Level accommodations offer spectacular views, 24-hour room service, unlimited access to our specialty restaurants, and more.

Enjoy up to four restaurants serving Mexican and international cuisine, five bars, six interconnected swimming pools with waterfalls including an adults-only pool, an invigorating massage at U-Spa and daily entertainment.

The hotel is home to a variety of water sports including water polo and basketball, aqua-aerobics, beach volleyball and kayaking. The hotel has its own tennis court and offers dance and yoga classes, and there is also a gym and sauna. Golf lovers can also enjoy practicing their swing at a course located less than 2 miles away.

The Barcy Club
Supervised activities for children aged 5 to 12 years. Activities include a variety of crafts, creative make-up, mask parties and sponge water fights. Wii and X-Box consoles are also provided. In addition to kids activities all of the restaurants serve a special children’s menu.

Book now and enjoy up to a 35% discount and $500 in resort credits at the all-suite, all-inclusive Barceló Karmina. Offer valid until 4/30/2018

Other restrictions and exclusions may apply based on availability.
Visit the site for more info on this offer and additional travel specials


Happy Travels,

Monday, April 2, 2018

Royal Hideaway In The Dominican Republic

Located in the heart of Santo Domingo, the luxurious El Embajador, a Royal Hideaway hotel, welcomes travelers with over 280 rooms offering views of the Caribbean Sea, the city of Santo Domingo or the lush onsite gardens. 

Santo Domingo is the oldest European city in the Americas and often overlooked as a Caribbean destination.  

The cities Zona Colonial was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in recognition of its list of historic firsts - the New World's first cathedral, university, castle, monastery, and fortress. 

A skyline of modern high-rises adds an unique backdrop to the 15th century architecture. Santo Domingo also offers luxury hotels, elegant dining, an exciting nightlife, and some of the regions best beaches.

Accommodation at the hotel ranges from Executive Junior Suites to Presidential Suites and each room boasts views of the Caribbean Sea, the gardens or the city

In-room amenities include digital technology with separate routers, complimentary wireless Internet, oversized pool, media hubs, 48-inch flat-screen TVs, and personal concierge service.

The hotel is the perfect starting point to explore museums, shops, restaurants and authentic Dominican culture. The Art of Fine Moments awaits.

Gourmet International Cuisine 
Dine at El Jardín, a unique à-la-carte restaurant. International Chef José Soto offers an unforgettable dining experience. Enjoy the best ambiance under the stars and delight in a spectacular Spanish Courtyard, where background music and good wine are the perfect company.

Additional Amenities:
  • 123,785 sq ft of lush tropical gardens - an oasis right in the center of the city
  • Bi Wellness & Spa
  • Gift shop
  • Gym
  • Business Center with meeting rooms, offices equipped with latest technology
  • FREE Wi-Fi throughout the hotel
Book now and enjoy up to a 25% discount off regular rates at El Embajador, a Royal Hideaway Hotel. Offer valid until 12/31/2018 with 4 night minimum stay. Other restrictions and exclusions may apply based on availability.

Happy Travels,

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Dominican Republic All Inclusive - Save Up To 48%

Located on Punta Cana’s famous Bávaro Beach

The all-inclusive Occidental Punta Cana offers a tranquil atmosphere and authentic Spanish-style architecture. 

The resort features over 860 colonial-style rooms, 11 restaurants, 10 bars, four swimming pools, and live music and Latin dance classes. 

Enjoy an array of watersports, like windsurfing and scuba diving in crystal clear waters. Royal Level accommodations offer the best views, unlimited access to our specialty restaurants, and much more.

Book now and enjoy up to a 48% discount and roundtrip airport transfers
(Punta Cana International Airport - PUJ) at Occidental Punta Cana. 

Offer valid until 4/30/2018 with 4 night minimum stay. Other restrictions and exclusions may apply based on availability.

View more on this offer, along with other travel specials at this property

Happy Travels,

Monday, March 26, 2018

Eleuthera All That Jazz 2018

A magical jazz long weekend on the beautiful 
out-island of Eleuthera, Bahamas.

Governor’s Harbour
April 11th-15th 2018

Eleuthera is known for its sweeping fields of pineapple, along with miles of coastline offering some of the most spetacular white and pink sand beaches, along with numerous secluded sandy coves. 

Eleuthera is also home to the The Glass Window - one of the few places on earth where you can compare the rich blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean on one side of the road and the calm turquoise-green waters of the Exuma Sound (Caribbean Sea) on the other side, separated by a strip of rock just 30 feet widePhoto Credit

Each year Eleuthera All That Jazz promotes The Islands of the Bahamas, Bahamian music, along with providing a showcase for Bahamian musicians to make contact with the musicians in the international music scene. 

Among ths year’s lineup is singer Myra Maud, singer-songwriter, instrumentalist, and producer. Photo Credit: Eleuthera All That Jazz

Back by popular demand is the flamboyant and theatrical guitar player, King Solomon Hicks from New York, and The Steve Koven Trio from Toronto are returning after their successful run in 2017. 

Coming from Nassau are Adrian D’Aguilar, Tino Richardson, Kevin Dean and Lamont Gibson as well as The Jazz Cats (ages 12-16) and singer Osano Neely.

Festival Schedule:

  • Wednesday, April 11th - Festival opens with An Afternoon of Jazz on The Other Side, Whale Point from 4:30-7:30 p.m. 
  • Thursday, April 12th - Jazz Vesper’s at St. Patrick’s Church, Governor’s Harbour at 5:15 p.m. 
  • Thursday Evening April 12th - Dining at 1648 Restaurant ($25 cover charge) 
  • Friday, April 13th - Jammin’ at Fish Fry, Governor’s Harbour from 7:15-9:15 p.m. – no charge.
  • Saturday, April 14 Levy Concert at the Leon Levy Preserve Banks Rd. with a reception at 6:15pm and concert start at 7:15 p.m. 
  • Sunday, April 15 - Jack’s Bay Club Lunchtime Concert, Rock Sound. 11:30 a.m- 3:15 p.m. 

    All profits from the event will be donated directly to Eleuthera’s wonderful Haynes Library. This grand old library is crutial to the island. It is not just a place to read and check out books, it serves as a training and developement center for residents to learn new skills and further their education. 

    Interested in sampling the worlds sweetest pineapple? 

    Yes, they are that great!!  The annual Pineapple Festival is devoted to the islands favorite crop. 

    Happy Travels,

    Thursday, March 22, 2018

    Caribbean Green Pea Soup

    Peas and beans are a staple in Caribbean cooking, 
    and find their way in stews, rice, fritters, and soups.

    Today's tasty soup is from the kitchen of Chef Freda Gore, owner of Caribbean Culinary ToursThis recipe is made with green split peas however any other peas can be substituted.

    • 1 lb dry green split peas (soak peas overnight)
    • 8 oz pickled beef or smoked ham hocks
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 2 garlic cloves
    • 1 medium onion minced
    • 1 small green bell pepper chopped
    • 2 large tomatoes diced
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 4 medium potato peeled and diced
    • 2 green bananas peeled cut into chunks
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

    Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large stockpot. Add peas and ham hocks reduce heat and simmer for 1 hr until peas are soft.

    Remove ham hocks reserve, Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat, add garlic, onions, bell peppers, and saute for 5 mins until soft but with no color. Remove flesh from ham hocks discard bones and cut meat into small pieces, add to frying pan along with diced tomatoes, cook for another 4 mins. Reserve

    Add the ham hock mixture to the peas along with the potatoes, bananas, and bay leaf season with salt and pepper cook for another 25 mins stirring frequently. Remove soup from heat and adjust the seasoning if needed. 

    Recipe source
    Chef Freda Gore - Caribbean Culinary Tours

    Caribbean Culinary Tours now taking bookings for a 7 Day Caribbean Food, Wine and Rum Cruise aboard Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. 

    This culinary cruise is scheduled for December 16-23, 2018, and will visit ports of call in Puerto Rico, St Thomas, Barbados, Antigua, St Lucia, and St Martin. 

    Visit the site for more info

    Happy Travels,