Thursday, September 12, 2013

Dreams Resort Punta Cana

So we arrived in the Dominican Republic one hot August morning. We didn't know what to expect in Punta Cana other than a great time because we were there for my bestie’s wedding (joy)!!
Upon arrival at the Dreams Resort Punta Cana, we knew we would NOT be disappointed.

Wow. The resort was a beautifully landscaped tropical paradise with a ginormous pool that connected throughout most buildings within the property and led to an area with a view of the ocean (and a wet bar).

During the days leading to the wedding, we explored the property and found, among other things, flamingos bathing in small ponds and a fruit bar, where a friendly Dominican lady would prepare fresh pieces of fruit, hand-picked by the resort guest for their savory enjoyment. I picked Mango :)

The Dreams Punta Cana Resort beach intrigued my little Benny more than I’ve ever seen. He couldn’t understand the concept of the crashing waves on the sand!!

Incredible beach. My little Benny loved it!
Paul and Benny walking back from Benny's first ocean experience

We enjoyed amazing food throughout our stay including Dominican favorites such as Sancocho, which is an amazing beef stew, as well as roasted pork, Dominican rice and beans (Arroz con gandules) and plantains prepared in several different ways (yummmm!)

Benny & mommy's favorite snack were the mangos-- soooo good

During this trip, we confirmed that Benny loves the water. The pool seemed to be his favorite pastime! When it was time to attend Sheryl and Deon’s wedding, we were pleasantly greeted by the staff of the Kids Explorers Club who took care of Benny at a rate of $15.00 per hour (and gave us mobile phones in case they needed to get a hold of us while Benny was there).

Benny and his buddy Uncle Robert Huezo (Sheryl's dad)

"Mom, I love the food here, but can I please be mischievous!?"

The ceremony rehearsal was so much fun. The resort features a gorgeous gazebo in the center of the resort's courtyard, which is, as you may imagine, a popular spot for wedding celebrations. 

We all gathered the day before the wedding to practice our walk down the aisle.  My bestie and her soon-to-be husband were a little nervous but Sheryl and I brushed it off with a few laughs.

The wedding coordinator goes over specifics with the bride...
Deon waits for his friends to arrive for rehearsal: "Time is Money" LOL 
The Huezo ladies reviewing last minute ceremony details (Ruth, Sheryl & Jezzebel)

Sheryl rehearses the 'walk' with her dad Robert

Later that night, the rehearsal dinner was so cute! We met at the main buffet restaurant, in an area that had been reserved for the wedding party. Several speeches were delivered for the bride and groom, including words from both sets of parents, a few of the groomsmen and little ol' me. I wished my bestie a lifetime of happiness with Deon and thanked her for always offering her unconditional and non-judgmental friendship!

And before dinner ended, several of us took part in drinking the famous Dominican “Mamajuanas”.
Fact: The Mamajuana beverage is made out of red wine, rum and honey which is left to soak with tree bark and herbs before being served. The native Taino Indians would prepare this drink as a sort of herbal remedy to help cure ailments and cleanse the blood…but the post-Columbus era led to the addition of Alcohol!

Mamajuana Shots!!!

Overall & simply stated, the resort was a tropical paradise for the senses. We definitely want to return one day when Benny gets a little older!! (Stay tuned for Sheryl's Wedding day blog post).

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