Hi friends! I thought today I would take a little break from packing to tell you about my vacation in Jamaica last week! This post is going to be very picture-heavy, so I’ll try to keep the words brief!
Although this was my sixth (yes – sixth!) time to Montego Bay, Jamaica, this was my first time staying at the Iberostar Rose Hall resort.
It was an all-inclusive hotel, which I always love because you can eat and drink anything you want without having to worry about an expensive bill upon checkout. Love that!
The hotel itself was gorgeous, and I loved the expansive staircase in the lobby that leads down to the beach/pool area. This is actually where Diane’s wedding ceremony was held since it wound up raining during the ceremony time (Boo). We were all a little sad not to be able to have the ceremony on the beach as planned, but it sure was a beautiful back up plan!
The grounds of the resort were beautiful as well, with picturesque pools and beaches.
They even had a lazy river!
Our room was nice as well – nothing super fancy but it was big enough and had its own balcony.
Here’s the view from our balcony. You could see the ocean which is always a plus! 🙂
Some mornings during our vacation Fabio and I woke up early to work out. Full disclosure: this didn’t happen too often during our trip, but even one or two workouts is better than none!
Our hotel had a pretty nice gym with a wide variety of equipment.
I especially loved the view of the ocean over the free weights. So pretty!
While in the gym, I messed around the machines a bit and then would complete a workout from the 7min workout app. I downloaded this app a long time ago but hadn’t used it in a while. Basically it gives you cues (and a timer) for completing a seven minute workout. Overall I’d say it was pretty good! At the end of it I had definitely boosted my heart rate and worked out my whole body, which felt great.
When we were done with the gym, Fabio and I would head out to the beach for a little run.
The beach was pretty windy and cloudy on this particular day (holy wind hair) but it was still a gorgeous place to run!
I think an out-and-back loop of the beach was probably right around a mile long, so while it wasn’t anything crazy it was still nice to get out there and get moving.
The beach & pool
My favorite thing to do during the rest of the day was hang out by the beach and pool!
Fabio and I arrived in Jamaica on Tuesday morning, and many of the other wedding guests trickled in throughout the week. Being on the beach and pool with all the other guests so many days in advance of the wedding really gave us the opportunity to get to know everyone. By the end of the week I felt like we left with a whole new set of friends and family members. It made the wedding so much more fun because we already knew everyone there! I absolutely loved this about the destination wedding. All this is just to say that we didn’t stray too far from the pool or beach during the day since we had such a fun time with all the friends and family around us.
One of my favorite parts of all this family time was getting to hang out with Fabio’s niece, Sofia. She is getting so big (!!) and is already much better at communicating with us. By about the second day I heard her say my name for the first time, and by the end of the trip was chanting “Chelsea, Chelsea, Chelsea!” Haha! What a cutie.
Fabio also made sure to spend plenty of time on the volleyball court with the rest of the groomsmen and friends. Here you can see the groom preparing to serve!
Fabio also went out to play golf one day with his dad and another guest from the wedding. I stayed behind with the ladies, but he said it was a lot of fun!
The food at the Iberostar was excellent! I’ve stayed at a lot of all-inclusive resorts, and I know sometimes the food can be kind of crappy. That being said, I was really impressed with the food here! In the morning we had plenty of items from the buffet to choose from, including tons of fruit. Look how much Fabio’s dad got! Haha!
For lunch we went to the buffet a couple times which was always good, but my favorite lunch by far was the day the hotel workers set up BBQs on the sand and had two of the chefs cook up some fresh jerk chicken for us.
The chicken was fresh and SO delicious, especially with the jerk sauce that came with it. Yum!
Dinners were delicious as well, and I enjoyed lots of tasty seafood during my stay.
The food that absolutely blew me away though was the French restaurant where I enjoyed some seriously delicious lamb (and you better believe after all the lamb-tasting I did before I left, I now consider myself an expert on that!).
I also really enjoyed the chocolate pyramid I had for dessert at the French restaurant. Yum!
What made each meal better was that I got to enjoy them with so many of Fabio’s close family members, which is a really rare occurrence. Fabio’s family is spread out around the US and some even flew in from Bolivia and Colombia, so this was a big deal!
Overall the food at the Iberostar was really tasty, and I enjoyed everything we ate.
Oh, and of course the drinks were awesome too. 😉
In addition to the fun daytime activities, the wedding group got together for fun events during the evening as well. Here are the bride and groom during the white party!
The resort had a number of evening attractions including shows, a casino, karaoke, pool tables, a cigar lounge and a discotheque/club, so most nights after dinner we would all convene at one of those places.
Yes, that’s my teddy bear in the background.
It was always a lot of fun and I truly enjoyed this opportunity to get closer with so many of Diane and Alex’s close family and friends.
By the time our trip was over we were absolutely pooped, and our time in the airport looked something like this.
Haha! Overall it was an amazing vacation, and I’m so glad I was able to share this time with Fabio’s family. Now I can’t wait to tell you guys about the wedding!! Hopefully we will get the pictures soon…
Question of the day: Have you ever been to a destination wedding? Have you ever wanted to go to one or hold one yourself?