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Cathyg
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Joined: 08/15/00
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Loc: Missouri
Grand Lido Braco Report
      #8458 - 11/19/00 09:02 PM (63.98.36.13)

Grand Lido Braco – November 11 – 18, 2000 - Steve&CathyG

This was our first trip to Grand Lido Braco (GLB) and our second trip to Jamaica. We were at Couples Ocho Rios in April of 1998. We had very high expectations for GLB since we loved Couples and GLB was considerably more expensive and offered no excursions in the price. To give you a quick summary, we loved the resort and plan to return next November.

Facilities

Room
We arrived in Jamaica after an uneventful 3˝ hour flight. We were greeted by singers at the airport. Immigration was a breeze! The hour-long bus ride was not bad at all. Check in took about 30 minutes and was a little disorganized. We were booked for a Jr. Suite A/N. We gave them a voucher for a free upgrade. They took us to our room #3029 on the ground floor of the second building. It was a 1 bedroom suite. The view was wonderful!!! And the convenience outstanding!!! The room was very simple but very clean. It remained that way all week. The maid service was outstanding. We got clean towels twice a day. Later in the week we received a beautiful bouquet of flowers and a fruit bowl and Champaign from our travel agent, Zoom travel. Some days the bed was turned down at night with a towel sculpture on the foot of the bed and radio turned on but not every day. We were totally pleased with our room with the exception of the shower. It varied from burning hot to freezing cold the whole length of the shower no matter what time of day. Bring your own hairdryer; the one in the room is almost useless!!

Beach
The beach was beautiful! The wind varied from day to day. It was never too windy to enjoy the beautiful water. We found it to be a very quiet place. People tended to stay to themselves. There were some rocks at the waters edge but not enough to wear our water shoes. There were plenty of floats if you wanted to use them. Beach towels were in short supply. You had to grab them as soon as they brought them around 10 am and they were not restocked the rest of the day. So late arrivals were out of luck. We also found that we needed to reserve our chairs early in the morning to get the spot we wanted. Snorkeling right off the beach was ok. A lady did find an octopus and took it to the Japanese restaurant to put it in the aquarium there but not before it bit her on the hand. Baby turtles began hatching our last night and we helped to collect them to take them to the marine lab. Security was certainly present but was very relaxed about clothing and cameras.

Pool
The pool was fabulous! Very pristine. We found most people hung out there and were much more social than at the beach. The pool bar was the center of activity. Keecha, Shy, Carleen, Michael, Boyd, Tamika, and of course Chester, kept things going. A lot of the old staff has been hired away by the new Ritz Carlton, so there were a lot of new trainees. Ate lunch here several times. Small portions, but very good. The lunch Buffet on Thursday was very good. And Cynthia, the fruit lady was always there to sing for you. There were several kitty cats to keep you entertained.




Hot tubs
The main hot tub was kind of greenish all week. The temperature was good. It was a pretty quiet week, not a lot of activity. The little secluded hot tub was very nice and certainly saw its share of ….activity.

Gym
The gym was under total reconstruction so it was temporarily located over the main bar. It looks like when it is completed it will be very nice.


Restaurants

Japanese
We ate here twice. The first night was better than the second….your cook makes a big difference, Tyrone the first time, Luke, a trainee from Cuba the second. Tyrone even had Cathy help with the cooking! The food was wonderful, the service very good. An enjoyable 2 hour experience!!!

La Pasta
The food was mediocre, the service TERRIBLE!!!

Victoria Market
Good food, all times of day and good service. The band during and after dinner was very good.

Room service
Very prompt and good.

Piacere
Very nice. Service excellent, food very good. Harpist was wonderful!

Nanny’s Jerk pit
Good food, good service.

Club House
Food was good, although small portions. Service was worse than terrible!!! The incompetence was unbelievable!!! There were always staff members sitting around doing nothing and when you asked for something they looked at you like they did not know what you were talking about. We went there once for breakfast, got so frustrated we went back to our room and ordered room service and got it in 10 minutes. Never could figure this out since room service comes from the Club House.


Activities

Toga Party
Steve was the male model for the toga tying demonstration in the afternoon. Toga party was poorly attended.

Beach Party Buffet
Food was plentiful, entertainment good.

PJ Party
Well attended, mostly by A/N side. Very entertaining, to say the least!

Street Party
Unbelievable amount of food! Beautiful presentation!!!

Snorkeling
Much better than expected. We saw a ray, lots of sea urchins, an eel, several brightly colored fish and even glimpses of some colorful reef. We saw a guy spear fishing and snapped a picture of his catch for the morning. The water was really rough on Thursday. Unfortunately, Cathy got seasick. The captain was very kind and helpful.


Shopping
Plenty of stores, prices comparable to other Jamaican shopping. Really enjoyed the tables set up by locals to sell their wares around the textile pool every day.


Summary

Excellent resort, great facilities and the right amount of activities. Service on this trip was definitely sub-par for a resort of this caliber. Definitely had a feel of two resorts sharing a common hub of activity. There are a few things that could improve: the shortage of beach towels, serving beverages in glass containers around the pool, service in the club house and La Pasta, picking up trash and used glasses both around the pool and the beach , and providing bar service both at the beach and pool. These things certainly would not keep us from staying here again. We are counting the days until we can return!


Cathyg
www.geocities.com/k0ey/Cathy_SteveG.html



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