Recommend May 2016 - (Page 12)

E d it o r 's N o t e s Yes, that's me swinging over the forest canopy in Mexico during a recent visit to the Iberostar Playa Mita in Riviera Nayarit, which I cover on page 24. I swore I'd never go ziplining-I'm not a big believer of putting my life on the line (pun intended)- and yet, there I was soaring over the trees in the mountains of Higuera Blanca, with my eyes wide open looking out over the stunning Peninsula Punta Mita. To say that I was ecstatic when my feet touched the last platform is to put it mildly, but admittedly That's me in Riviera Nayarit it's one of the most exhilarating experiences I've ever had. Your clients can capture that same sense of thrill in the mountain resorts of the U.S., which we cover on page 44. Adventurers of all stripes can go mountain biking, hiking, and, of course, ziplining over scenery that will remind them just how stunning their own backyard is. From the peaks we descend down to the shoreline with a special focus on all-inclusives in the Caribbean and Mexico (page 18). We've got a string of onsite reviews that showcase the uniqueness offered in today's all-inclusive marketplace. The Hard Rock All Inclusive Collection, for example, "offers the unexpected by providing our guests with authentic experiences that rock," says Frank Maduro, v.p., marketing, All Inclusive Collection, while Frank Corzo, v.p., U.S. field sales, Palace Resorts, says Moon Palace resorts "offer truly singular experience.... The most impressive of these experiences is without a doubt our entertainment offerings." IBEROSTAR, too, is upping the all-inclusive ante in a few ways, including, as the hotel company's director of marketing, Claudia Simon, says, by having "spectacular hotel locations." The hotel experience, though, is only a part of the puzzle, as travel advisor Susan Farewell notes in her column (page 29). In it she focuses on "hotel and experience pairings," writing that, "Increasingly, travelers are combining vastly different destinations and experiences," and she notes that it's important that a travel agent "strike a balance" for their client. Take, for instance, Susan's clients heading to Japan. They "want a hotel where they can have all the Western comforts they are familiar with, but they're also eager to sample local traditions. Their upcoming trip is a nice blend of both-they are staying in Western-style hotels in Tokyo and Kyoto and ryokans outside Kyoto and in Hakone." Which takes me back to my visit to Riviera Nayarit-it was a memorable vacation because the "hotel and experience pairing" was spot on. -Paloma Villaverde de Rico E-mail me at Official Florida Travel Industry Education Program Recommend has partnered with VISIT FLORIDA to create a course focused on Family Travel throughout Florida. You'll get the 4-1-1 on the range of family vacation opportunities Florida offers, everything from high-energy theme parks and museums showcasing shipwrecks, pirates, and clowns to up-close encounters with wildlife. When you graduate as a VISIT FLORIDA Family Specialist, you'll have access to prizes, including a Flip Digital Camera, three $50 Amazon gift cards, and luggage valued at $250; and you'll receive 3 CEU credits from The Travel Institute or 12 CEU credits from ACTA. Graduates also receive sales support from VISIT FLORIDA and a personalized certificate. Go to visitflorida. to enroll and become a VISIT FLORIDA Family Specialist. group publisher/editorial director associate publisher editor-in-chief associate editor art director latin america editor caribbean editor cruise editor web editor/copy editor contributing writers corporate director of marketing production manager ad traffic coordinator laurel a. herman terence k. murphy paloma villaverde de rico michelle marie arean janet del mastro carla hunt ed wetschler vivian holley melissa bryant susan farewell, lane nieset sharon lewen estrella bibas daimee feliz chairman/founding editor hal herman president/editorial director laurel a. herman executive vice president gary herman miami corporate headquarters: 5979 nw 151st. st., suite 120, miami lakes, florida 33014 tel: (305) 828-0123; fax: (305) 826-6950 caribbean, central & south america: terry murphy, tel: (305) 828-0123; ext. 120; fax: (305) 828-0799 northeast usa, eastern canada, europe, africa, middle east: monique agaliotis,, tel: (917) 244-7000 florida, midwest usa, caribbean: brenda goodwin,, tel: (305) 828-0123; ext.160; fax: (305) 826-6950 southeast usa, colorado, utah, idaho, montana, wyoming, texas, north & south dakota: karen smith,; (561) 419-8397 western canada, california, oregon, washington state, nevada, arizona, new mexico: lisa marie costa,, tel: (949) 244-4760 hawaii: alan rock,, tel: (310) 721-2825 cancun: margarita alvarez, tel: 011 52 998 287 1545; fax: 011 52-998 884-1716 RECOMMEND, Vol. 31, issue number 8, (ISSN 0034-1452) is published monthly by Worth International Media Group. OFFICE OF PUBLICATION: 5979 N.W. 151st St., Suite 120, Miami Lakes, FL 33014.Periodicals postage paid at Hialeah, FL and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to RECOMMEND Circulation Department, P.O. Box 171070 Hialeah, FL 33017-1070. RECOMMEND is distributed at no charge to qualified travel agents and tour operators. Paid annual subscriptions are available for $48 in the U.S., $96 in Canada, payable in U.S. dollars in advance. Published for North American distribution. Canada Post: Publications Mail Agreement #40612608. Canada Returns to be sent to Pitney Bowes International, P.O. Box 25542, London, ON N6C 6B2 Copyright© 2005 Worth International Media Group. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A. Recommend is not responsible for unsolicited photography, art or manuscripts. Subscriptions: To manage your subscription, visit or email let's get social Hang out with us @Recommendmag on both Twitter & Instagram, as well as on And if you want to see what our editors are up to away from the office, follow them @EdWetschler & @AreanWanderlust. 12 may 2016

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend May 2016

Editor’s Notes
Hotel Desk: On the Waterfront
Tour Talk: A Peek at Our Peaks
All-Inclusives: Raising the Bar
Onsite Review: Puerto Vallarta’s Hotel Scene
Onsite Review: Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya
Onsite Review: Iberostar Playa Mita
Onsite Review: Moon Palace Jamaica Grande
Hotel and Experience Pairings
New Properties Beckon
Onsite Review: Cambodia
Southern Africa’s New Enticements
Onsite Review: Rail Europe
New Frontiers in Travel
Innovation on the High Seas
Mountain Resort Vacations
What’s New in Orlando
Onsite Review: Escape to Discovery Cove
Official Florida Travel Industry Education Program–Family Course

Recommend May 2016