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Desperately Seeking Sunshine

February 15, 2011

I can’t believe I’m about to complain about Atlanta winters (it was 62 degrees today! in February!), but man, this one feels like it has just stretched on foreeeeever. This is my third one since moving from Boston, and I feel like each one has gotten progressively longer. I am so ready to get outside! I’m also desperate for a doggie to share the fresh air with, but Mr. Panther says NO, so I’ll just have to strap Josie and Bela into their harnesses and hope for the best. Anyway, that’s a topic for a different post.

Since full-on, straight-up springtime is still at least a few weeks away, the best I can do for now is daydream about our honeymoon. Mr. Panther and I actually booked it back in August! We planned to use frequent flyer miles, and our travel agent said “the sooner, the better,” so we just went ahead and did it. Our agent is going to be watching for sales until July to make sure we get the best deal possible. PS: Did you guys know that travel agents are FREE?! From what I hear, they can’t always get you a lower rate, but they can harass the hell out of your resort to make sure you get the exact room you want, and they’re on-call all the time in case your flight is delayed or something. Very useful services like that are generally not free. I like when they are.

Anywhoodle, this is where we’re going:


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We’ll be spending eight days at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian. Mmmmmmm.

Unlike every other aspect of our wedding, Mr. Panther and I didn’t really obsess about or over-analyze this decision. Want to know how we made our choice? Well, we started by enumerating our priorities. I had just three things I wanted to experience during our honeymoon:

  1. Couples massage
  2. Swim-up bar
  3. Holding hands with a monkey

Mr. Panther had four—so greedy!:

  1. Sex
  2. Sex
  3. Sex
  4. Outdoor activities

From this, we gathered that we should probably go with an all-inclusive resort. We didn’t want any complications to interrupt our priorities. We found that most all-inclusive resorts were in the Caribbean, so we decided to go there.


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I think we Googled something like “Caribbean honeymoon,” and we found a nifty quiz on the Sandals website that promised to help us find our perfect vacation location. We answered a few questions, and Sandals told us to go to St. Lucia.

During my very brief Caribbean research, I found that there are basically two types of Caribbean islands. One kind is very flat. This means shallow, clear, turquoise water; shimmering white sands; and not much else. This is the right island for serious beach bums. The other kind of island has more varied terrain—this means the beaches are rockier and the water is darker, but there’s more to explore on land. St. Lucia is the jungley, mountainey kind. We’re not huge beach people, and I’ve always wanted to see a rainforest. Plus, you can hike volcanoes there! VOLCANOES!

I remembered seeing on Facebook that a college acquaintance had gone to St. Lucia on her July honeymoon, so I sent her a message right away. I asked her if she’d had any trouble with traveling during hurricane season; she said that it only rained in the morning, and it was actually a refreshing respite, because it cooled down the island a bit. My college acquaintance and her husband are more adventurous, and they had stayed on the non-resort end of the island (Soufriere) at the Mago Estate Hotel and hung with the locals and stuff.


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The area sounded really cool, but honestly, we’re just so lazy. We needed the low level of responsibility that an all-inclusive resort brings, so we started looking into the three Sandals resorts on the island. Our first instinct was to go with Sandals Halcyon Beach, because it’s supposed to be the quietest and most low-key. But our travel agent had been to all three, and thought we might like the Sandals Grande St. Lucian better. It’s the newest and biggest, and has more outdoor activities for Mr. Panther.

I originally thought the “Lagoon Swim-Up Room” would be cool. You walk off your patio into a pool!


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Look at that! The lady is chugging wine and the guy is underwater! It’s my dream honeymoon scenario!

Unfortunately, this pool is shared with everyone else who has a Lagoon Swim-Up Room, and Mr. Panther didn’t love the idea of listening to other amorous couples splashing around outside our patio. Our travel agent confirmed that the rooms could be noisy, so I gave up the idea. We ended up with the “Penthouse Honeymoon Beachfront Concierge Room.”


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It’s not huge or anything, but it’s got an awesome view and a king-sized bed. That’s all you need on a tropical island, right? We’re also excited about the “concierge” service. This means we get “VIP check-in, special luggage handling, tour arrangements and private parties,” but also … ALSO. We get 24-hour room service and “a fully stocked bar with premium brand liquor and wines by Beringer.” Sold.

My only disappointment is that it’s not looking like I’ll be able to hold hands with a monkey. SIGH. I’ll just have to make it a life goal.

So, that’s our honeymoon! Delta has a direct flight to St. Lucia from Atlanta, so we decided to fly back to Atlanta on the Monday after our wedding, stay at home overnight, and then leave for St. Lucia the next day. This way, we won’t have to bring our wedding and honeymoon stuff with us to Connecticut, and we’ll get to spend time with our kitties in between!

How did you ladies pick your honeymoon location? How soon after your wedding are you leaving?

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. February 16, 2011 10:13 am

    So far, I’ve only read the first paragraph and naturally I immediately had to comment and say — GET A DOG. A sweet little rescue would really enhance your life — plus cats LOVE playing with them. Well, at least Paul does. It’s pretty adorable — he grabs Peggy Sues face and chews on her ears and then rolls around like a manic.

    OK — let me continue reading the post.

    • February 16, 2011 10:37 am

      Trust me, I’m not the one you have to convince! Brad says that a) we’re broke and need to get our finances in order first (true), b) we’re crazy-busy and don’t have time for another responsibility (mostly true), and c) we don’t have space for three pets in our little apartment (not REALLY true). He said he would cave if we moved into a bigger place with a yard, so we’re actually looking at some now. 🙂

  2. February 16, 2011 10:17 am

    … finished.

    And OMG I’M SO JEALOUS.

  3. February 16, 2011 4:37 pm

    are you sure there’s no way you can hold hands with a monkey there?? It’s not fair if Brad gets to do all 4 activities he wants to do and you only get to do 2/3. ALSO, The Bachelor (Jake’s season) went to St. Lucia and one of the dates was playing in a volcanic mud bath. Don’t you want to do that?

    Craig is in charge of choosing our ‘moon, bc I don’t care where we go as long as I get tan while we’re there and I don’t have to be on a plane for too long. He’s researching St. Lucia, too!! I can’t remember the name of the place he’s looking into, though.

    Also, I’d like to second Bianca’s suggestion to get a dog. More specifically, get A SHIH TZU. Ludwig is the sweetest little pooch EVER, and he sometimes has cat-like behavior (he stretches like a cat, likes his alone time sometimes, and naps a TON).

    • February 17, 2011 4:47 pm

      I’m certainly going to TRY! If there are monkeys there, I WILL be holding hands with them.
      That’s so cool that you’re down with the traditional guy-does-the-honeymoon thing! I wish I wasn’t such a control freak — it would have been nice to hand something off.

  4. February 17, 2011 4:39 pm

    Go to Brazil for the monkey. It’s worth it. Even better then holding hands is when they search your hair for bugs.

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