Paradise Found…part one

Grenada was everything we were looking for and more…

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Our hotel…

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Mount Cinnamon blew our expectations out of the water! This was not the most expensive hotel on the island, but it is by far the best. Every aspect of your stay has been anticipated and taken care of by the expert staff on site. They even have grass tennis courts- a big plus for our family.

We arrived to Shauna’s incredible hospitality. She brought us a welcome punch and went over all the amenities on site. She also asked us about what we wanted to do while we were in Grenada and offered to book various things for us. She was a wealth of local knowledge about where to dine, must see sights and tips about getting around. She also arranged a car for us- highly suggest this so you can explore the island, though the driving is on the opposite side of the road and at times feels like playing chicken, but I digress.

The villa we stayed in was at the top of the property and quite a hike from the main office and the beach. The car came in very handy! The views from our villa was spectacular and worth the extra trek. The GM was also very present on site and repeatedly throughout our stay checked on us and remembered our names. In addition to ShaunIMG_2888a’s graciousness, the bartender Antonio was incredibly friendly and even brought us a bottle of his homemade hot sauce on our last day.

The private beach area was incredibly well-stocked. There were hobie cats, kayaks, paddleboards, beach loungers, a ping pong table, beach volleyball and a croquet course. So many options when we were not out on the dive boat. The beach staff was also friendly and professional. For those diving, hit the restaurant for some breakfast before the dive- they open early and it is included in your hotel cost.

From the complete hospitality, to the nightly cookies delivered to your door, to the beauty of the landscape and care with which each guest is treated, Mount Cinnamon exceeds expectations. Do yourself a favor and book your stay with them!

Suit up for some great diving!

Our family vacations center around diving and Grenada was no different. There are multiple dive centers there, but based on proximity to our hotel and availability of types of dives, we chose Dive Grenada…and we chose wisely.

We have two very experienced divers, one warm water only diver and one diver needing an advanced open water cert. Phil helped us book dives to satisfy all of our needs. The wrecks were phenomenal and we were able to dive these while our son was completing his advanced class in the same vicinity. We also went on what all of us agree was the best night dive we have ever done.

The Bianca is a must for any diver and the sculpture garden was unique and beautiful and also where our daughter saw her first shark- a bucket list item for her! The divemasters were friendly, professional and incredibly knowledgeable of all the local areas of interest. Our son loved his advanced class, led by Phil’s wife, Helen. Best of all though, this dive shop was not in the business of cattle boating large groups of divers and snorkelers. They kept small groups and maximized what we were able to see each trip out. We did two dives a day for five days and would have done more if we did not need a day of decompression before flying.

A couple of notes…we rented our gear for the kids ahead and brought it just in case the shop did not have what we wanted- this was completely unnecessary. Dive Grenada has fantastic gear and renting on site saves a lot of checked baggage. Do not miss the Bianca and I highly suggest a night dive- the bioluminescence was stunning. Some of the other shops on the island get good reviews, but trust me, Dive Grenada will offer you the best experience.

Calling all chocolate lovers!

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Belmont Estate was one of the highlights of my recent trip to Grenada. I love to bake and to be able to see firsthand how some of the spices and chocolate are processed was amazing! We elected the tour so we could see everything up close and have someone knowledgeable to guide us and give us all the historical information.

Our guide was friendly and fun. He took us through the cocoa trees, as well as all the other types of fruit trees on the plantation, and each step of the process. We picked a pod, broke it open, walked the pods, turned them and then visited the processing center were everything is aged, mixed and brought to perfect chocolate life. IMG_5493

You can also make your own chocolate, but we had not planned enough time for that. Part of our visit included the onsite goat dairy where they make their delicious goat cheese.

We capped it off with a visit to the restaurant for lunch. It was a buffet which is not usually my fave, but their dishes were flavorful and provided a great sampling of Grenadian food. They had provisions, green plantains, jerked chicken, salted fish, beef curry and vegetables creole. There was also a sampling of salads and nutmeg ice cream for dessert. Overall, this was one of the best excursions of our trip!

Don’t forget the shopping…

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I knew I wanted to go to Art Fabrik before we arrived in Grenada and I am so glad I did

my research!

The shop is in St. Georges on one of the twisty, turny streets, but it is worth the effort to find. My family and I went in and were immediately greeted and taken to the batik studio upstairs. It is truly an artist’s workplace with lots of gorgeous fabric everywhere and women hand-painting unique designs at each work station.

It is pretty warm upstairs which made my respect for these ladies grow. The batik studio is unique, but so is the rest of the shop. The stairs are hand-painted, the walls are covered in local art and the shop downstairs not only features the unique batik fabric art, but jewelry and other wares from local artists.

All purchases are wrapped in either batik remnants or hand-sew bags. This was by far the best shopping experience on the island and a must-not-miss excursion for those visiting Grenada.

One thought on “Paradise Found…part one

  1. Pingback: Freelance Writing: The Importance of Self-Care | Strawbabies and Chocolate Beer

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