Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate"

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hondurasbeachbum
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2014/09/23 18:11:38 (permalink)
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Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate"

I have been put in charge of the development of a new beachfront resort that we are attempting to make all-inclusive. The company is really lean so I have wound up doing things that I don't have much of a background in. I have been tasked with creating the menus(types of foods) for the different restaurants and choosing the different amenities and what they'll include. I would like for you to share with me some of your favorite things while visiting resorts in the past. I would like to know what is truly memorable and makes those places, places you want to return to. Also include details about service levels. I really appreciate any help that I receive. 
#1
CallMeFrank
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/23 19:26:02 (permalink)
+2 (2)
Good luck!  Sounds like you have your work cut out for you.  Hope they gave you a big fat raise for your extra duties.
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uphillklimber
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/24 15:49:26 (permalink)
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Appearance is the first thing. Gardens and iguanas and some birds, peacock, parrots, etc... Gives it all the tropical feeling when you get there. Cleanliness, raking and sweeping up throughout the day make a big difference.

At the restaurants, good food goes a long ways, obviously. Personally, I am always looking for tender steak and mahi mahi. Variety in the menus helps, few like to eat the same thing everyday for a week. At the buffets, refreshing the dishes regularly helps. Keep them full and not looking like they have been dug out with a backhoe. If it's out door buffets, keep the birds away. And again, presentation. Keep it looking good and colorful. Some carved melons do wonders for decoration. It's always good to have a grill ready to specially prepare a dish, much like an egg station at breakfast, where the cook will prepare your eggs anyway you want them. Let's not forget fruit, we are in the Caribbean on vacation, after all. Did I mention cleanliness?
 
Above all, smiles and friendliness. All the above will matter less if the people aren't happy.

Lovin life,
Bob
 
 
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uphillklimber
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/24 15:51:52 (permalink)
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Just a little more if I may. Many of us go looking to sample 1) local cuisine, and 2)their presumption of Caribbean cuisine. But they always will want some of their back home food also from time to time. For example, I like a little ice cream every night. And French fries every now and then.

Lovin life,
Bob
 
 
#4
ulle trautvag
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/24 16:38:46 (permalink)
+1 (1)
uphillklimber
Just a little more if I may. Many of us go looking to sample 1) local cuisine, and 2)their presumption of Caribbean cuisine. But they always will want some of their back home food also from time to time. For example, I like a little ice cream every night. And French fries every now and then.


I like quality before quantity.  Had a good experience at Natura Park, Punta Cana.  The food was very fresh and tasty.
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uphillklimber
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/25 15:07:54 (permalink)
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Even one more: If you want to provide the ultimate, make it memorable.

Fresh
Tasty
Well seasoned and cooked
Well displayed and served
Hot dishes hot, cold dishes cold
No short cuts, do all it takes to make this food great. No bland food on vacation.

I used to visit a real nice resort with okay food, not bad, but certainly not great. Then one year tried another resort. The food was so good, I swore off the first resort.

Lovin life,
Bob
 
 
#6
kallileigh
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/25 15:50:00 (permalink)
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I think any one of us who has stayed at an AI has had at least a few not so great food experiences.  It has to be a total catch-22 - needing to have a wide variety to appeal to people from around the world but, the more variety they add to the menu the more their food costs increase (and so... they turn to lower quality ingredients).  I agree with the others - high quality and fresh food options are important to me.  If that means a limited but, well executed menu, then I'm ok with it.
 
Other things I want from an AI resort...
- Comfortable bed (softer than a slab of marble please) with crisp, clean linens
- Clean, well appointed room with no odor issues and great A/C
- 24 hr room service, even if the late night menu only includes cold items
- A well stocked in room mini bar (water, beer, soda, snacks)
- Options for activities, and the option to avoid all activity
- Well spaced loungers with palapas on the beach
- Drink service on the beach or poolside
 
Hmm... all of that makes me sound fat and lazy.  Feed me and let me sleep.  Oh well, that really is what I want out of a vacation!

We didn't know we were making memories. We just knew we were having fun.



 
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carolslc
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/09/25 20:18:41 (permalink)
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I want to be able to get something to eat and drink any time of the day. I hate when nothing is available from 2-5 pm, for example, except for room service. I don't want to be in my room - I want to be out experiencing the resort, but I get hungry for a snack. I would rather have a limited selection of food, but something available all the time. And what is there should be fresh and tasty and high quality - better quality is more important to me than a huge selection. Also need to be able to get sodas and bottled water any time, easily, and easy to get nonalcoholic frozen drinks - pina coladas, etc. I love having those by the ocean or pool. Food and drink should not be a hassle, in general. Which reminds me - restaurants should not be too difficult to get a reservation! No way do I want to stand in a long line at a certain time every day to get seats in a restaurant for later, or other nonsense. And I second the fruit - if I'm in the tropics, I want lots of luscious mango, pineapple, etc.
 
Lots of loungers. Ideally one adults-only pool if not an adults-only AI. Comfy beds with sheets and washable duvet cover/comforter. Any bed linen/covering like an old fashioned bedspread that looks like it's not washed between guests is just gross. 
 
My husband would say a work-out facility. I say I will get there but never do. :-)
 
Service with a smile always. It leaves a bad impression when you feel like you're putting the bartenders out by asking for a drink.
 
That's all I can think of at the moment. Good luck!!!


 


#8
ulle trautvag
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/10/01 22:18:40 (permalink)
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One of my best experiences was several years ago at Club Maeva Tulum.  At least twice in one week they organized an outdoor lunch barbecue on the beach under beautiful palm trees:  grills were set out to broil fish, chops, hamburgers, vegetables; fresh salads were tossed, fruit.  Truly toes in the sand, a few feet from the gorgeous water.
The same resort also had a "quiet place," a discreet bamboo-enclosed area with a small pool for those wishing to tan "au naturel."  Massage, upon appointment, was offered.  There was a separate location for restrooms and showers.
The resort had resident wildlife:  coatis, geese, ducks, raccoons, fish in the meandering stream which faced those rooms that did not look out at the sea. We were not deprived.
I miss this resort; it was great.
 
 
post edited by ulle trautvag - 2014/10/01 22:25:47
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gmadeb
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/10/02 00:36:57 (permalink)
+1 (1)
Ulle, that sounds wonderful.  What happened to the resort?  I'm sorry I missed it. 
The first time we went to Dreams Tulum was in 2006 and the night we arrived they had a similar feast on the beach.  Tables and tables of wonderful fresh fruit and grilled fish and steaks and chicken and pork, and vegetables and guacamole and, and, and.  I can't even recall all the food.  The waiters would bring any beverage you desired and the desserts, oh my.  There was live entertainment, dancers and music.  Then after that, a movie on the big screen on the beach, with plenty of loungers to relax and watch.  (Family friendly there, no au natural)
So, Hondurasbeachbum, when you get your place all together, let us know. 


#10
ulle trautvag
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Re: Insights into what make a Resort "The Ultimate" 2014/10/02 11:55:50 (permalink)
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gmadeb
Ulle, that sounds wonderful.  What happened to the resort?  I'm sorry I missed it. 
The first time we went to Dreams Tulum was in 2006 and the night we arrived they had a similar feast on the beach.  Tables and tables of wonderful fresh fruit and grilled fish and steaks and chicken and pork, and vegetables and guacamole and, and, and.  I can't even recall all the food.  The waiters would bring any beverage you desired and the desserts, oh my.  There was live entertainment, dancers and music.  Then after that, a movie on the big screen on the beach, with plenty of loungers to relax and watch.  (Family friendly there, no au natural)
So, Hondurasbeachbum, when you get your place all together, let us know. 


I believe it was bought by Palace Resorts which did not keep it open.  It's too bad because it occupied a gorgeous stretch of beach.There was even some snorkeling off the beach.  Now it's in ruin.  A poster a  year or so ago took photos of this abandoned resort and posted them here.
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