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Sunday, March 31, 2019

RIU Palace Las Americas Hotel - Cancun

Cancun is always one of my favorite vacation destinations to just sit back and relax under a palm tree. Last month I surprised my mom with a girls trip to Cancun for a week at the RIU Palace Las Americas. RIU Palace hotels are the most elegant category of the RIU hotel chain, with hotels that meet the highest standards in terms of luxury, excellence and sophistication. The RIU Palace Las Americas is an adults only all-inclusive resort located in the hotel zone of Cancun.  We experienced great service from the moment we stepped foot into the resort.

When we walked in, the first thing we saw was the breathtaking view of the infinity pool and the blue ocean. We were  handed glasses of champagne and checked in. The hotel is absolutely beautiful, very regal looking and spotless. The staff behind the front desk were so friendly and helpful!


Our room was on the second floor with an oceanfront balcony and the room itself spacious with amazing views. The room had a mini bar and the refrigerator was stocked with beer, soda, and bottled water, which were replenished daily. The room also had a lounge area with a sofa with a flat screen TV and there is free wifi throughout the resort, but it can be spotty at times.


The food tasted better here than all the other all-inclusive resorts Ive stayed with. Breakfast and lunch are at the buffet with many hot and cold options. There is also a cafe/coffee-bar right when get out of the elevator to kick start your day with a shot of espresso. There are many bars located throughout the hotel so you won't have to worry about finding your next drink. There are many restaurants options for dinner and reservations for dinner are no longer required at the RIU. It is first come first serve and long waits are not the norm unless you want to eat at "Black and White" steak house. For the steak house I suggest you go 20 minutes prior to opening, or expect a long wait time. We ate at the Mexican, Italian, Japanese, steak house and buffet and all of them were very good and offered plenty of options.


There are three infinity pools on the resort so there is plenty to choose from. There is the main pool which is the largest of the three and has the most sun throughout the day. The second pool, located to the right when facing the ocean, has a swim-up bar and has activities with music though out the day. The third pool, located to the left when facing the ocean, is the quieter pool and is more shaded. The purpose of our trip was to relax so we spent most of our time at the beach and the quiet pool.

The Beach

The beach front was overall smaller than other resorts in Cancun, but there is plenty of room when considering the neighboring property is also a RIU and you have access to it as well. The beach is very clean and the hotel staff start setting up the beach chair and umbrellas around 7am.  My favorite park about the beach is the warm turquoise blue water. There are also two small piers on the resort to walk out on over the ocean.


There is daily entertainment and activities during day by the pool and at the beach. They have dance lessons and water aerobics in the ocean. In the evenings they have nightly shows on the main stage and the shows are a different theme every night.


The gym was a good size with 4 stationary bikes, 2 ellipticals, 4 treadmills, free weights, and machines. It was also pretty empty for the most part and sometimes there would be on eother person working out.

My overall experience with this RIU resort exceeded my expectations and my only complaints is the slow wifi. It is also a great resort to take pictures with the picturesque beach, two small piers, the pool and palm trees. By far this is my best experience with RIU resorts and I can't wait for more vacations with RIU!

Below are some more photos of my stay with RIU Palace Las Americas in Cancun:


Sunday, March 3, 2019

Ice Castles - Lake Geneva

Cue the soundtrack from Frozen... "The cold never bothered me anyway". There is no better way to feel like Elsa than to step into an ice castle. I took a day trip to Lake Geneva to visit the Ice Castles.

Every year, the team at Ice Castles sculpt this icy wonderland using icicles that they grow and harvest on site. The structure of the castle is made of thousands of icicles hand-placed by professional ice artists. It is a unique experience and even more beautiful during the night when they light up the castle in an array of colors. Next year we will plan to experience the nighttime colorful wonderland.

From Chicago it took about an hour and half to drive to the Ice Castles in Lake Geneva, WI and it was a nice day trip. Upon arrival it was difficult to find parking and we had to drive around a few times since everyone was also heading to the Ice Castles. We were one of the first groups to go inside but soon after large amounts of people starting coming in. We entered the castle through a cave of icicles hanging above us and then stepped into a real ice wonderland. Inside there are fountains, slides, tunnels, and archways all made from icicles. It is a very magical experience and amazing to see what can be made of ice. The castle is built right next to the lake so that when it starts to melt in the spring time, it drains right into lake.

Don't be fooled by my dress, I had pants underneath and in between takes I would put my coat back on. I would not recommend wearing a dress but the pictures do look amazing I must say. Plan on wearing lots of layers and winter boots to stay warm.

Ice Castles in Lake Geneva is one of six locations. They have five locations in the US and one in Canada:
  • Dillion, CO 
  • Excelsior, MN
  • Lake Geneva, WI
  • New Hampshire 
  • Midway, UT
  • Edmonton (Canada)


  • Order tickets online Here
  • You will need to preorder tickets and hurry because they sell out fast
  • Check the weather beforehand and check the website to make sure Ice Castles are not closed 
  • Check the website to make sure the
  • Wear winter boots, the ground is snowy 
  • Arrive ahead of time scheduled ticket time 


Friday, March 1, 2019

A Weekend Trip to Seattle


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