Posts tagged ‘beach’

Roar Clothing Party in California – part one

Last weekend we flew out to Los Angeles for the Roar Clothing USA Grand Opening/15th Anniversary party. Roar is the company that I won the sweepstakes from and they had invited us to this party.

The company flew us out to L.A. and put us up in one of the newest, hip and swanky hotels in Beverly Hills. Yep, you read it right Beverly Hills! Now they could have put us up in a Best Western or something like that but nope, we got the royal treatment which absolutely floored us.

We stayed at the Sofitel Hotel and we have never stayed at such a swanky place in our lives. I could get spoiled very easily.

Roar also rented us a car to use for the weekend and they got us a Mustang with a convertible  roof which was cool for driving around by the beach. Our son has a Mustang which I’ve never driven and Hubby has gotten to drive once. Our son is very protective of his baby and no one drives it but him so needless to say, Hubby was thrilled that we got a Mustang.  Hubby had fun driving it.

The party started at 6pm on Saturday so we had the whole day to go where we wanted. I used to go to the Santa Monica Pier all the time when I was a kid and Hubby had never been there so we visited the Santa Monica beach area. This area is also special to me because my mother’s ashes are scattered at sea off the coast there so it is kind of bittersweet to visit a  place that has both happy and sad memories.

The circus-looking tents off to the left is a Cirque du Soleil show that just started on the 15th.

We walked around the pier area and then up the block to an area they have that is closed off and there is a farmers market and shopping, plus they have street performers. Very cool so if you happen to get to LA you should check it out.

Had lots of fun at the beach and driving around Los Angeles visiting old haunts.

Next post:

Part Two – What a party!!

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Jamaica is a Great Vacation Destination

Jamaica is a very poor country and the recession has hit them even harder than the USA. When we went 2years ago the currency exchange was $1 US = $37.50 Jamaican, now it is $1 US = $88.00 Jamaican. Tourism is their #1 money making industry followed by the exportation of their Blue Mountain coffee.

Check out the price for gasoline and this is per liter not gallon.

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Unfortunately for Jamaicans, most of the plantations have shut down, the bauxite mine is closed and a lot of the smaller resort hotels have shut down as well. This leaves over 1/3 of the adult population out of work.

Despite this situation, the Jamaican people are warm, friendly and very glad to see tourists. Between the great weather and wonderful beaches, where else would you want to vacation?

The ocean is so clear and there are practically no waves since the corral reefs break the waves prior to them hitting the beach. Swimming is great because the water is somewhat warm and very relaxing.

I love the swim area at Sandals Resort in Ocho Rios because it has a pier surrounding it which is built on cement blocks which creates a “mini reef” effect. In less than 7 ft. of ocean you can see the fish, coral, sea urchins and even an octopus if you are lucky like I was. This makes snorkeling in this area a whole lot of fun and extremely easy to do. We went snorkeling farther out in the ocean and all I could see was the reef since it was deeper water and I’m fairly blind without my glasses and can’t dive at all. Surface snorkeling was way more fun when you can see the fish.

Lots of homes in Jamaica look like they are abandoned but they aren’t. Jamaicans mostly can’t afford to have construction companies work on their homes so they work on them a little bit at a time which makes for interesting neighborhoods. There will be fancy homes next to ones that look like they are falling apart or derelict.

Neighborhood in Jamaica

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Home of “voodoo” practitioners and you have to cross a thin walkway bridge after paying the entry fee to see the voodoo priest. Not set up for tourists this is the real local voodoo den.

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The views of the ocean and the rest of the island are really pretty.

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This was our room for the 10 days. Backside/poolside of the villa, we are the one with the towel on the railing. We had a big bedroom, medium sized living area, bathroom and small kitchen which is the window on the left.

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The pool was for the four villas only and we usually had it to ourselves which was great.

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We had a few visitors that kept us from missing our pets

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The pool at the Manor house which was the main hotel portion of the resort and where the main desk, tour desk, restaurants and spa are.

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And food? OMG! Such great choices! The actual Jamaican jerk chicken and pork is terrific but they have that for lunches and pull out the stops for dinners. Here is some pictures of a buffet they had set up on the evening I got injured. Hubby went and took pictures and brought me back some goodies.

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I recommend Jamaica as a place to visit on vacation even if you don’t  stay at Sandals but I highly recommend them as a resort of choice. There are six Sandals resorts in Jamaica to choose from and they are really super!

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Busy Weekend and then Jamaica

vacation Pictures, Images and Photos

We are headed to KC, MO for the weekend to visit our daughter and go to her baby shower then we have to get back on Sunday to get packed and ready for our 10-day trip to Jamaica.

I think we are going to need a vacation from our vacation at this rate :0)

We will be back on September 25th and I will post photos from our trip. I look forward to checking everyone’s blogs out when I get back to see what I’ve missed and I hope you all check back with me then.