Flower Baths & Jimbaran – 22nd August 2022

I wasn’t hungry this morning so I skipped breakfast. Poor Nathan had a solo breakfast but he’s a fast eater so I doubt he minded too much haha.
This was our last day in Ubud and I had pre-booked some more spa treatments at the Kaveri Spa at our resort. After my pretty mediocre massage on our first day, I wasn’t expecting anything amazing but this therapist was waaaay better!

Our treatment started with a couples massage (with MUCH better pressure) followed by body scrubs and body masks. After we washed the strawberry masks off in the showers, we had a beautiful smelling flower bath. These baths are the new craze in Bali and lots of spas are starting to offer them in their packages. It was definitely more of a photo opportunity for me as I find baths incredibly boring haha. But it was a nice experience! The flowers also smelt AMAZING. (Note: it’s very hard to try and slip into a bath when the flowers have been arranged so nicely)

Nathan did join me after taking 100 photos of me. I asked if he wanted a picture but he declined. I wonder why… (I did however get him in a little video)

After the bath, I hopped in the shower to wash the hundreds of flower petals off me. (Not sure if I was meant to do this as I’m sure they just got stuck in the drain – woops) then we headed to reception to check-out.

If you remember back to my previous posts, I mentioned I had organized a photo-shoot for Nathan and I as we wanted some professional pictures taken to display at our wedding. After not having anything to wear, I cancelled the photo shoot and didn’t re-book anything. Funnily enough when we stayed at Udaya Resort & Spa they offered us a complimentary photo shoot session. We had to book which was easy enough to do and they had a photographer come and take photos of us around the resort on our last day. You got one picture free and then if you wanted any more you could buy photo packages. It’s actually a great way to get business because THEY SURE GOT ME!

I ended up buying a long maxi dress from the markets in Ubud the day before so wore that for our photo shoot. If you’re getting married, I highly recommend doing some type of professional photo shoot before the big day as you can start to get comfortable in front of the camera. I can take a million mirror selfies but when someone else is taking photos of me I’m not sure how to position my body so this was good practice. (Even more so for Nathan as he hates staged photos hahaha) Surprisingly enough the photos actually came out pretty good! We ended up purchasing about 20 of them which cost around AUD$180 which is pretty expensive for Bali. However it was good to get it over and done with and I didn’t want the hassle of trying to find someone else. I won’t show any of the photos on here yet as I’m wanting them to be a surprise but I can say the big white hat did make an appearance 😀

After the photoshoot, we headed next door to have lunch at The Melali for the second time that week. Nathan ordered a Mexican wrap with Chicken whereas I ordered mine with Falafel. We also got some fries with Tzatziki sauce and crumbed chicken strips to share.

Once we’d finished our meals we ordered a Gojek car to take us to our next accommodation in Jimbaran. The guy that picked us up had this small little hatchback car so we crammed our suitcases in and begun the 1.5 hour drive to our next hotel.

We had booked two nights at The Royal Tulip Springhill Resort which was about 1km away from the famous Rock Bar. My first impression of the resort was that it was quite secluded. As in, to get to the resort from the main road you had to take a few long entrances to get to the front. (You couldn’t just step out and start walking around the streets kind of thing) The staff were nice and the rooms were large and decent and they had a large pool for families.

After checking in to our room we sat by the pool for a little bit and ordered a couple of milkshakes. The restaurant area was pretty dead so I’m not sure why it took a good 20 minutes just to make two milkshakes but oh well haha. While we were sitting there I overhead a girl say that apparently there was an earthquake. I googled it and there had just been a 5.6 earthquake where we were. Obviously as we were outside we didn’t feel anything so kind of gutted we weren’t in our room to experience it! (We always get earthquakes in NZ so it’s a little bit of a thrill when they happen)

We decided to get ready around 5pm and head to The Rock Bar at the Ayana Hotel for a few drinks to watch the sunset. Our Gojek ride only took about 10 minutes however it would have taken longer if I hadn’t realised that Nathan had hopped on the wrong Gojek!
When your scooter arrives, they usually say your name so you know it’s yours and you just hop on the back and off you go. Nathan went before me so when another one arrived and asked me if I was Nathan I was like oh shit he’s hopped on the wrong scooter. I took Nathan’s one instead and quickly called him to tell him to double check where his driver was taking him. Turns out he was going somewhere way further so he got his driver to cancel the original ride and take him to The Rock Bar instead and paid him a little bit of cash for the hassle.
I tried cancelling my original ride but it wouldn’t let me as my driver had arrived at my location. He couldn’t cancel it from his end either so he had to drive to The Rock Bar to ‘complete’ the trip. (Think this is a safety feature Gojek has so the app knows the driver took you where you to were meant to go) I felt a bit bad but at least he still got paid for it I guess!

Entrance to The Ayana Resort

The Ayana Resort looked really nice! If you’re looking for somewhere a bit more luxurious to stay in the South of Bali I would recommend staying there. I’ve read some good reviews on it too!
To get to The Rock Bar you have to walk through the resort then take this tram ride down to the bar/restaurant on the oceanfront.

Not my picture but my photo skills aren’t the best to get a pic like this haha

This is one of the most popular places to watch the Sunset in Jimbaran. As expected it was pretty pricey as it’s at a 5-star resort so we just grabbed a couple of drinks. We were considering ordering some food but the menu didn’t appeal to me and from what I’ve read the food isn’t amazing for what you pay so we just sat and watched the sunset for an hour.

While we were at The Rock Bar I googled places nearby for dinner. I came across an Indian place called Indian Tandoor so we ordered another couple of Gojek’s and headed off for our little dinner date.

Classic Sarah & Nathan white people meal. We ordered two butter chickens with garlic naans, white rice and even a sprite!!! Hahahahaha. We’ve been dying for a good butter chicken since we moved to Perth as we literally have not had a good one since we moved. The Indian in Western Australia is so average. (Well, the Butter Chickens are at least) so we were hoping Bali would have a good one. It was surprisingly quite good but still not the absolute BEST I have had.

When on holiday you must have dessert so we went on the hunt for an ice-cream place. We had driven past the Movenpick hotel a few times so we thought surely they would have a Movenpick Ice-cream store close by. A quick Google map confirmed they did so off we went!
Unfortunately though the ice-cream flavours were super unappealing. We walked to another gelato place down the road but their flavours didn’t excite me either. No dessert was had that night 😦

When we got back to our hotel we had showers and I did a little self-tanning as my spray tan was starting to fade. As it was my birthday the next day I wanted to be all bronzed for the day club! 😀 😀

Cancun – 24th July 2019

Wednesday

I did not gym today. My alarm went off at 8am and I kept sleeping until 9am. In my defense, Nathan was the one that didn’t really want to get up, I was showered and dressed when he eventually pulled himself out of bed. I will say though that he’s coming down with a store throat so he’s trying to get as much sleep as he can so he doesn’t get sick before he moves back to New Zealand and starts the rugby season.

At 10am we headed off to the buffet! I thought I’d switch it up with something different today (like maybe a bagel or some French toast maybe) but I went for the omlette station and toast again 👨‍🍳 My omelettes at home are never that good so I enjoy it when someone else makes them for me 😊

Again we had no plans for today! The only decision we had to make was if we wanted to relax in the pool or at the beach. We agreed on the beach today and thankfully found a spare sun lounger. It was another beautiful 30° today so the sand was hot and the water was warm. ☀️ I must say, Hyatt Ziva has one of the nicer beaches in Cancun. The sand is white and soft and the water is clear and blue – I could even see fishies swimming around which I loved! They even have these hammocks out in the water you can relax in. 🏝

I didn’t take any photos as I was in the water but we relaxed in the hammocks for a bit, swum out to the iceberg so Nathan could climb it and took the kayaks out into the water for a little paddle.

After the swim I relaxed on the beach with a drink and read some of my kindle 💜

It was getting pretty hot near the beach so eventually we headed to the pool around noon. Sadly I missed my aqua aerobics today! They were just finishing up when I hopped in.

Instead, we joined in with this soccer contest they had going where you had to try and kick the soccer ball into a goal in the water, however I was absolutely terrible at it. You had to stand on the side of the pool in front of everyone to do it and I pretty much embarrassed myself by kicking it about 1m into the water with both tries. Nathan nearly got it in but unfortunately we both didn’t make it to the final rounds 😔

We decided to eat at Chevy’s diner for lunch again today, I must say though, it wasn’t terribly good. All the other food here is nice but I thought Chevy’s was average. I ordered a vege burger which I wasn’t a fan of and Nathan got a beef BBQ burger which he couldn’t finish. It was all a bit dry and didn’t have much flavour. Not to mention the waiter took forever to come and take our order. I had to ask like twice if we could order and they just kept saying our waitress would come and take it but she didn’t.

Afterwards we decided to take advantage of the rooftop infinity pool, exclusive for guests staying in the adults only tower. I don’t know why we didn’t do this before. There were lots of loungers free and there’s no kids splashing around which Is great. Plus you get these amazing views overlooking the ocean. There’s also a bat with pool wait service so you don’t even need to get up to get a drink 😍

I relaxed by the pool for a few hours while Nathan went and worked out at the gym. (He can only do so much relaxing haha) we did consider going to Coco Bongo tonight (which is like a nightclub/show not far from our hotel) but we decided not to. We thought it’d be better if we were in a group of people and we’re pretty much on a relaxation/sleepy/drinky buzz this vacation. Clubbing requires energy I do not have. 😄

We booked a massage tonight for 8pm so we had a couple of hours to spare until our appointment. I convinced Nathan to have Italian with me tonight and it did not disappoint. Pretty sure it was Nathan’s favourite meal this whole trip. We had some bread to start and a caprese salad, then came our mains. Nathan ordered two mains, a Salmon dish AND beef tenderloin. I ordered a carbonara type dish, along with a Lorenzo’s pizza which was basically chocolate and onion on a pizza. Sounds weird but was actually amazing.

I couldn’t finish my Pasta and pizza but of course Nathan finished it off for me. When we finished, he actually told me that while I was at the adults only pool he went to the 24 Hour Snack Bar after the gym and had a pre-dinner meal of beef and gravy, grilled veges and shrimp. 😐 “I kept it light so I wouldnt be full for dinner” is what he said.

Does anyone else have a boyfriend that can eat crazy amounts?? Nathan has the fastest metabolism of anyone I know and it drives me insane. I look at a piece of pizza and it goes straight to my stomach 😭 I am however a very proud girlfriend. I’d enter him in an eating contest any day.

After declining desert at the Italian restaurant Lorenzo’s, we headed to the Zen Spa at the resort an hour before our massage so we could take advantage of the hydrotherapy pools.

After meeting with the concierge, we were shown to the bathrooms where we were given a key with our own lockers. The lockers were set up really cute with a bathrobe, slippers, water and a towel in them. If anyone knows me, I have clown feet so these little slippers didn’t do much for me. My hooves were falling over the sides as I walked to the pools 🙄

We enjoyed the spa though! They had a cold plunge pool, hot spa and steam room. My sunburn didn’t appreciate the hot spa too much but I got over the pain pretty quick and relaxed in there for about 10 minutes with cucumbers on my eyes. 👌💜

Soon enough, our masseuses came to grab us and showed us to our couples room. I had a masseuse called Ramiro and he was very lovely and professional.

We were booked in for a couples Deep Tissue Massage and my God it was amazing! I have this girl in Vancouver that I thought gave the best massages until i had Ramiro. He didn’t go easy on me that’s for sure. I had so many knots in my back and he went really deep to get them all out. The massage wasn’t repetitive and everything he did felt amazing. I was so gutted for it to be over! If you’re ever at the Hyatt Ziva in Cancun, ask for Ramiro if you’re planning on getting a massage!

Afterwards, it was only 9pm so we went to the buffet and had another dinner 😂 I was in no state to be going to another restaurant. My hair was full of massage oil, my face is sunburnt and I generally just look like a fat peppa pig at the moment. I told Nathan how sorry I felt for him having me on his arm at this 5-star resort 🤣

At the buffet I just got a crepe for dessert while Nathan loaded a plate with meats and salads. – like I said, this boy can eat!

Once our second dinner was done, it was off to our room to chill out for the rest of the night! I got the pillows right tonight, our Butler spoke to us in the morning and asked if I’d decided on what pillows I wanted for our sleep tonight. I mentioned the aromatic ones but he said the gel memory foam ones were much better.

I’ll have to review how my sleep went tomorrow! 😄

Cancun – 11th June 2018

June 11th 2018

I woke up this morning to the sound of Justin Bieber singing Despacito in my ear.
Haha just kidding, I wish.
I did however chuck it on Spotify and walked out onto my balcony to view the amazing ocean with the song playing – just so I could get that true Mexican feel ya know 😉

We all had to meet in the lobby by 9am so after getting ready, I headed down to the buffet to have some breakfast.
IMG_20180611_084945_204.jpgAs I arrived, they were making Cinnamon buns out the front in this massive cooker – yummy!

I always find buffets funny. Just the fact that you’re shown to your table, you all sit down and then basically just get back up again to go and get food. Like there really is no point in sitting down because you’re not ordering from a menu. Everyone does that awkward 2 minute wait at the table and looks at their cutlery then gets up to go and get their meal once the waiter has left.

giphySo anyways, that’s exactly what I did. Sat at my table with a few girls from the FAM, encased in some small talk then got up to go and get food.

 

Day 2 of feeling like the biggest fatty in the group. The other girls got fruit and cereals and I literally filled up my plate with an omelette, breakfast taco, toast and then had a separate plate for my pastries.
I think I chucked the piece of Pineapple on there just to make myself feel a little healthier because it definitely didn’t go with the arrangement of food I already had.

 

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20180615_162040.jpgAfter a second helping of breakfast (I know! :'()
The girls and I met up with the rest of the group in the Hyatt Ziva Lobby.
It wasn’t all relaxing in the sun drinking mojitos on this trip! We actually had to do some ‘travel agent work’ such as taking a tour of the resort we were staying in, taking pictures of the views from the rooms, checking out the lead-in category rooms right up to the rooms with the swim-up pools and knowing the difference between the adults-only tower and the family suites.

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Very gruelling work I know!
I won’t go into too much detail about the Hyatt Ziva Cancun, just because I’m going to do a whole separate blog post review on it.


After exploring our all-inclusive heaven, we took the bus over to another resort that’s under the ‘Playa Resort’ chain called Panama Jack Cancun. Theres two Panama Jack properties (one in Cancun and one in Playa Del Carmen).IMG_20180611_110230_050-1.jpg

If the Hyatt Ziva Cancun is a bit out of your price range, Panama Jack Cancun is good 4-star option. I’d say it’s definitely great for families (especially one’s with younger children) as they have live music, mini-golf and even a castle with waterslides!
Sometimes they have a ‘kids stay free’ deal so check out their website to see what the latest promo’s they have going on!

Insider tip – If you do decide to stay here, I’d advise on upgrading your room type. The Standard & Junior Suites are both the same size and are considered a ‘lead-in’ category room, however if you’re traveling as a family, pay the extra amount for a Junior Family Suite or a Master One Bedroom Suite. The Family Suites have a king sized bed for the parents, along with twin bunk beds and a trundle for the kids whereas the One Bedroom Suites have a separate bedroom and living room, and a private balcony so you have ton’s more room!

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When we’d finished checking out Panama Jack, we headed next door to one of the other Playa Resort properties – Hyatt Zilara Cancun. It’s the adults only version of the resort we’re currently staying at!
I could definitely tell a difference between the Hyatt Ziva and the Hyatt Zilara. The Hyatt Ziva is all ages and a much bigger resort with lots of pools, dolphins and a great big beach whereas the Zilara has more of an intimate feel to it.
The great thing about the Hyatt Zilara is everyone has a beautiful view no matter what room category you’re in.
The lead-in category room is a Junior Suite and it looks like this:
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How nice is that!20180611_130538.jpg
You  get a double whirlpool tub, an ocean view and a beautiful modern bathroom. Another thing that was unique to this resort is they have this thing called a ‘Magic Box’ at the entrance of your room. Being an adults-only resort, they understand you’re not fully clothed all the time when you’re in your room so when you order room-service, they open this little door to put your food in and you can open it from the other side to collect it – how cute!

Everything else about the resort was amazing (again, not going to write too much as I will do a separate review) Even though I wasn’t staying there, everyone we talked to who was there on holiday kept telling us how great it was!
One lady said it was the best resort she’d ever stayed at, another couple raved about the service and how relaxing it was and someone else complimented how the staff went out of their way to make sure their allergies and food preferences were taken care of.
That’s another thing I forgot to mention, at any of the Panama Jack or Hyatt Resorts, the staff always ask if you have any allergies before you sit down to eat so they can make sure to tell the chef or give you some alternatives – like I say, it’s the little things that count!

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Even though it was after lunch time by the time we finished viewing the Hyatt Zilara, I still wasn’t that hungry because of the big breakfast I had consumed this morning.
Unfortunately, we were scheduled for a lunch with the management team of the Hyatt Zilara at their buffet restaurant ‘Spice’ which after looking at all the food that was on offer, it wasn’t so unfortunate…

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After we had all finished eating, it was time to head back to Hyatt Ziva and enjoy the rest of the afternoon doing whatever we liked!
It was so hot and humid I was just dying to go and hop in the pool and that’s exactly what I did when we got back!

I don’t have many pictures to show for the rest of my afternoon in Cancun. When we got back to our rooms, I chucked my phone on charge as it was nearly dead (I did take about 500 photo’s after all) and popped into my bikini before heading down to the pool area.

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This was taken one morning when no one was up yet

I grabbed a drink from the swim-up bar and got chatting to a few others from the FAM. We drunk cocktails, yarned about our jobs and swum around the pool for a bit before heading out to the beach for a swim in the Caribbean sea. We originally wanted to go and climb up this inflatable climbing thing the resort had in the water but the staff were fixing it so we kind of just paddled around with our drinks and talked about life and all our hopes and dreams (as you do over tequila and vodka)
We must have been out there for hours!
We kept running back and forth between the beach bar and the sea so we definitely had our fair share of drinks before the sun set.
It was so much fun though! The people I was with were so good to talk to and it was finally nice to have a good group of people to talk to that weren’t so ‘cliquey’ (I have a bit of a problem finding people in Canada to make friends with who don’t already have their ‘group of friends’ or just aren’t interested in getting to know you)
The group were all pretty much from Toronto so maybe I’ve moved to the wrong city!

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We decided it was probably time for us to all freshen up for dinner so we headed back to our individual rooms, got ready and then met in Bruce’s room to take some pictures and decide on what one of the restaurants we wanted to eat at.

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As you can eat at however many restaurants you wish and you don’t need to make reservations, we headed to Habaneros which is their Mexican restaurant right on the beach. They serve everything from mouthwatering tacos, fresh seafood ceviches to zesty aguachiles. We only ordered appetizers  and a few drinks before heading to Lorenzo’s for a feast of Italian Food.
Lorenzo’s Restaurant was pretty popular that night so we wrote our name down on the list and headed off to watch some of the nightly entertainment before going back to the restaurant when a table was available (they give you one of those buzzing disc things when a table is free so you don’t need to keep going back to check)

Dinner was great!
I live a life of brokeness living in Vancouver so it was nice to read the menu and just pick an entree and whatever else I felt like and not have to worry about paying for it afterwards haha.
I actually ordered what I thought was bruschetta for my entree – you should have seen my face when a Salad got put in front of me!
Lauren couldn’t stop laughing when we looked at the menu and realised that i’d pretty much ordered a salad that begun with the letters “bru” and immediately thought it was bruschetta.
When you’re really feeling like carbs, you have no idea how disappointing it is when lettuce is served to you.
In the restaurants defence, it was actually pretty good. It went well with my lasagna and pear pizza haha.

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To end the night, we had a few drinks at the brewery (yes this resort has it’s own brewery) and then a few of us headed off to bed!
You’d think with the unlimited alcohol we get I’d be drunk off my face every night but with the heat, all the food and the long days of walking around in the humidity – it really makes you tired haha!
Thankfully, I was so full from dinner I didn’t feel the need to order room service like I did last night hehe 🙂

Tomorrow, off to Playa Del Carmen!