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Tag-Archive for "resorts"

The best time to be at a resort Sep 13

I like resorts after the lights go out. Y’see, I like astronomy. Resorts are safe places to be at night in the dark. I mean, who’s going to get New York City to turn off all the lights so you can stargaze? And would you want all the lights out there?

But some resorts even have star parties on their roofs, with telescopes, and lighting that points down so it doesn’t light up the sky.

Stargazing at a resort. Click to enlarge

There’s a resort in Atacama, Chile, only 40 miles from town, that features skies so dark they built the world’s largest telescope not far from there. For a little less remote, but still exotic, you could try the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa in Hawaii. They have 40 acres of back country, and they speak English. They even have a resident astronomer! Can’t make it to the Islands? How about Colorado? Viceroy Snowmass, a classy resort on the Snowmass ski slopes near Aspen has skies dark enough that you don’t even require a telescope. They have a person who gives talks about what’s up in the sky while you sit around a campfire. Don’t look into the campfire, though. It’ll mess up your night vision.

That out of reach, too? How about your back yard? Tonight just after sunset, go out and look west. That really bright star you see is Venus.

An alternative to cruises Nov 12

Do you like warm climate and exotic locales, but don’t feel a need for the limitations of a cruise’s schedule? Don’t like the extra expenses that you didn’t think of? A cruise ship too small for you?

Consider an all-inclusive resort.

All-inclusives generally have a single price that includes airfare, all food, all beverages, all lodging, all activities, all tips. Cruises can take you to several locations, but the resorts try to make up for it by having a large enough (say, 20 acres) and interesting enough physical plant to make up for the variety of destinations on a cruise.

One resort's accommodations

One resort's accommodations

At an all-inclusive resort you don’t need to go on a paid excursion to take in horseback riding, snorkeling, scuba, sailing, fishing, hiking, and guided tours into town or nearby historic sites. They are included, and generally offered several times a day. You won’t run out of things to do, and the schedule is yours. Not into snorkeling? They have a pool too big to fit on a cruise ship, and at least one resort features big-name video games that aren’t even on the market yet. Maybe you like active (volleyball, tennis) sports or sedate (billiards) games. Included. Not to mention lounging on a really nice beach, or spa services (some of the spa services might be extra), and food.

Maybe golf is your game

Maybe golf is your game

Food! All-inclusives have several restaurants, all part of the package. Calling them “restaurants” might be an understatement. Take your pick of these modifiers: exotic, themed, gourmet, high-class (or casual), always open, sushi, French, Italian, western, seafood, even local.

Beaches is the foremost family-oriented resort, and they have several attractive locations. Sandals is a popular couples and honeymoon location. Do a quick internet search and you can find a pile more.

You can even get married at an all-inclusive. Included, but you have to bring your own spouse-to-be.

The goal of an all-inclusive resort is to offer so many things on site that you feel no need to go elsewhere. Eventually you have to come home, though. When you do, come back to this site and tell us about it.