I just wanted to post a quick note about our trip to Secrets St. James in Montego Bay as John and I are packing up to leave. We really love this place. The food is awesome and the service is top-notch.
I had good attendance for each of my classes @ 8:30 and 5:00 each day. I taught a combination of Yoga and Pilates which appeared to be appreciated by everyone.
As typical for us, we jumped on FitProTravel yesterday to look at options for us to return to the sun in a few months. We’re seeing a number of open dates and once we’re back in the states we’ll be booking flights.
John and I have a delightful time teaching fitness classes at Jewel Paradise Cove Resort in Jamaica – so here’s a short review in pictures. We both highly recommend this resort – create a free user profile to check availability
This property is gorgeous – they’ve done a beautiful job with the restoration and upgrades from the old resort. I took this from the tower that leads to the disco and entrance to the water slide – very fun 🙂
Bishop is the local Fitness Pro. He and I worked out the schedule for the week on Monday morning. I had two classes a day – off on Saturday. We’d alternate between a Pilates and Spinning class + an 11:00 pool class. John helped out with a few of the early 7:00 AM power walks.
View from our balcony, looking at the inner courtyard pool and hot tub. A swim up bar is beneath the platform. We found the rooms very nice (but not overly large) and the housekeeping staff did a great job cleaning up after us and keeping us with clean towels.
My Pilates classes were out on this pier – the view and sounds of the ocean were awesome.
Last “Mudslide” of the trip with one of the entertainment staff.
John with Barbie – who was fantastic keeping everyone feeling welcome!
Would we return to teach there again? Absolutely.
Although I do need to caution you that Jewel Paradise Cove has a very small beach. Actually the whole resort is one of the smallest properties we’ve stayed at. For John and I small is fine, we don’t feel compelled to do much beyond hang at the beach.
Jewel Paradise Cove Resort and Spa is a brand new property in Runaway Bay Jamaica – and I’m not kidding about brand new, their grand opening isn’t until Nov 15 2013. That’s a month from now.
John and I are very excited to spend the week there. Poor guy, he wasn’t able to go anywhere last winter. My older daughter Abby and I had a fabulous time at Dreams in Puerto Vallarta… while John stayed home to watch the dog.
I hear this place is awesome and the early reviews are very positive. We plan to post a review of the resort as soon as we get back in mid December.
Do you have your teaching vacation planned for 2014?
For many of us, our world is all about fitness. Many of our friends are fitness instructors who we’ve taught with for years and we socialise with them and their significant other.
So why not vacation together as couples?
It wasn’t so easy… until now.
In the past, resorts would typically only accept one fitness professional at a time. Amy has vacationed with a friend – leaving me and the kids at home 🙁 It’s been a great deal for both; Amy’s teaching credentials provide the all-inclusive accommodations (you get to bring one adult with you) and her girlfriend pays for the plane tickets – typically with points.
But now a number of resorts recognise the value of having two guest instructors, which opens the potential for you and another instructor to take a teaching vacation together!
Here is the list of resorts that will host two instructors and the formats you’ll need to be certified to teach:
Couples San Souci – tennis and group exercise
Couples Tower Isle – Yoga/pilates and group exercise or Spin only
Couples Swept Away- yoga and group exercise
Couples Barbados – Yoga and group exercise
Dreams Puerto Vallarta – Yoga and group exercise and/or tennis through October 2013 then 1 pro is scheduled weekly. They will host ANY enthusiastic format!
Secrets Montego Bay – Yoga/pilates and group exercise or Zumba
Jewel Runaway Bay – Yoga/pilates, group exercise or Zumba and GOLF or tennis
Jewel Dunns River – Group exercise and tennis
Hedonism II – Group exercise and tennis and yoga/pilates (3 positions)
Barcelo Punta Cana – Group exercise, yoga/pilates, Zumba or Personal Trainer (3 positions)
Grand Palladium Riviera – Group exercise or Zumba and tennis
Grand Palladium Vallarta – Group exercise and tennis
Grand Palladium Bavaro – Zumba and Yoga
Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton – tennis and group exercise or yoga or Zumba
This can work very well for you and your friend, if you both teach the required formats. One can take all the classes during the day, giving the other the full day off to schedule off-property excursions.
Fitbodies Inc. is looking for some very special Instructors that can fly to Jamaica and teach for 8 or more weeks at a time.
Long Term Fall Opportunities We are looking for yoga and group fitness teachers to travel to Jamaica and teach long term this fall. The booking fee will be drastically reduced if you are able to stay for at least 8 weeks. We have availability at Couples Swept Away, Ritz Carlton, Secrets Montego Bay and others to mix it up a bit while you are there.
While not for everyone, with both girls at collage this year, I could see myself taking a long-term teaching gig in Jamaica… especially if I could spend time at Secrets Montego bay 🙂
Jamaica? I don’t know if I would want to vacation there… I’ve heard some negative things 🙁
A bad reputation is hard to live down.
Back in the PI (Pre-Internet) days we didn’t have much information beyond stories and recommendations from friends. I remember back in 1994 when my wife Amy and I were planing our very first trip away from our two young girls. We were thinking Cancun when our travel agent suggested we try the Sandals in Ocho Rios Jamaica.
“Jamaica? I don’t think so, I’d feel better going to Mexico.”
“You’ll like it and you can’t beat the price… it’s All Inclusive”, was the agent’s reply.
She was right and now, after staying in multiple locations around the Caribbean, Jamaica is always our first choice – with our without our kids.
Now we have the Internet and dozens of travel review sites – so we aren’t limited to a few friends. You can now find hundreds of reviews and do your own research before deciding on which location to book your fitness vacation.
Spinning Instructor Brenda Moeske learned about Working Fitness Vacations on a Podcast I did with Suzelle Snowden from Fit Bodies Inc.
After talking to Amy last year at the ICI/PRO conference Brenda scheduled her vacation to teach for the week at Couples Tower Isle in Jamaica.
She sent this quick email when she got back:
It turned out to be a fabulous week! I taught my last class (group fitness) class this morning. I did group fitness at 9 a.m. and spin at 5:00 p.m. I had some good classes! My participants said I was missing a great view!! They don’t have us teach on Friday afternoons and of course Saturday’s. What an amazing experience!! My husband has thanked me the entire trip and the hospitality has been wonderful!!! We have already been on the website planning our next one! Thanks again for letting us know about FitPro Travel!!!! See you in a week!
Amy and I have both taught at Couples Tower Isle a number of times. It’s really a beautiful and romantic place.
Do you have a low cost Working Fitness Vacation planned for this winter?
See if you qualify, create your free profile, pick your resort, schedule your flights today.