The End!

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This is the dress I wear for dinner. Looking at it now, I decide it is way to short for a woman of a certain age. It;s just too young overall. I don’t want to want to ear elastic waists and baggy shirts, but I also don’t want to look like I’m trying to dress for the prom.


Dinner is at the Italian restaurant, Venecia.

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We have brought the bottle of wine that they have put in our room, a Muga Rioja, and Luis decants it for us.

They bring the amuse bouche.

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We both have the salad.


Zung has the calamari.


I get the tournedos. I don’t love the cheese on it.


Zung gets the shrimp speidini, which he always enjoys.


And of course, I ask for some coconut ice cream for dessert.


Zung is lower maintenance and just orders the fresh fruit that is on the menu. It is one of his favorite desserts.


Raphael has paid us a visit and asked when we are leaving tomorrow. He very kindly tells us we can have a late check-out and stay in the room as long as we need. I really appreciate how he has made sure we have had a great experience after the poor experience we had at lunch the first day. He has done an excellent job as GM in my opinion.

After dinner we go and pick out a photo from our romantic dinner. We exchange some money so we can tip tomorrow. We go to the lobby bar. I get a cucumber martini and Zung gets an espresso martini. He’s branching out!


We chat with the woman who we met on the beach, Lydia, and her husband, Martin. We take a picture. They are from Canada (I think – don’t bet your firstborn on it though).


Maggie and Det arrive. Yay! We all do chocolate cake shots. We do five. They ar not as much fun as they were the night before. I swear, my liver hurts. We have also been chatting with another couple that is in the picture.


Raul comes by and says hi. He apparently is dealing with a guest who is in the music bar who is getting unruly. Daniel tells me the progression. Raul is with public relations. If that doesn’t convince the guest to behave or go back to his room to sleep it off, security gets involved. Daniel said if they have to, they call the police, but that very rarely happens. The bartenders can tell when someone has “crossed over” and they keep an eye on them.

It is time to call it a night. My liver just can’t take any more.

I say good-bye to Daniel. Isn’t he just adorable?


We get a ride back to our room from Jorge, who is working the night shift. Pay attention. This will be relevant later.

The next morning we wake up early. Zung gets some almost sunrise pictures. a

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We are at breakfast by 7. We go to say goodbye to Olivia.


There are chilaquilles for breakfast.


I won’t keep you in suspense about what Zung had.


There are a lot of choices for breakfast. I took the camera and made a photographic tour.

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Trust me, you will not go hungry here.

We go back to the room and pack and then go to the beach. I see the butler and he asks what time we need the bell boy. I say they should come at 12:30. He says we can’t do a late check out and I tell him to check with Raphael. When I see him again he tells me it is no problem.

It is hot and windy. The wind is annoying, but it makes the hot not so hot.

We walk up and down the beach in front of the Grand. IMG_1288 DSCN4230

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Jonatan brings me a couple Mimosas. He has been a super attentive beach waiter. I will be looking for him when I return in January. I am coming back and doing a solo trip. I wanted to do it in 2014 and just never got around to it, so I have decided I will do it first thing in 2015. It doesn’t take much to convince me to come back to this.

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The sad picture.


We go back to the room, shower and finish packing. The bell boy comes and it is Jorge. The same Jorge who gave us a ride to our room late last night and was working the night shift. When I ask why he is still here he says someone didn’t show up and so he stayed to do a double. I tell him he needs to get some sleep. Having worked nights in the past, I know how hard it can be. Jorge takes our bags. We say good-bye to the concierge. We go to lunch.


Zung does not get shrimp fajitas.

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There is the very sad walk to the lobby. I was hoping to get to see the Christmas decorations but they were still putting them up when we left.


We check out and then go to the lobby bar to have one last Havana and coke. Raphael comes by and he tells us about the things they are going to be doing in the future. There are going to be a lot of fitness classes offered at the shopping center. yoga and boot camp type classes. This has happened and I am looking forward to the yoga classes. There is going to be a game room and possibly a bar outside by La Brisa at night. That is not for sure though.

Our ride arrives and we say good-bye.

At the airport we check in and go through security. There is no Havana Siete, so I don’t have one last chance to be a rum runner because next time relations with Cuba will have been normalized and I can bring the Cuban rum back legally. I knew Obama would do it!

I buy a silver ankle bracelet.

We eat at Bubba Gumps. I get the clam chowder.


Zung get the fried shrimp platter.


Across from our gate is a place where you can get one of those pedicures where you put your feet in a tank of fish and they nibble the dead skin off of your feet. Can we say GROSS!?

We board the plane. I did not sleep well last night and I am stupid tired. I nap on and off during the flight. Zung naps during most of the flight.

There is a guy sitting in our row and he tells us that he and his wife and kids had a wonderful 2 week stay. However, their kids passports expired while they were down there and when they were checking in to come home they were told the kids couldn’t fly with expired passports. He was outraged. I guess he called US Customs or Immigration and they told Frontier Airlines to go ahead and let them board. He was all indignant, “We’re US citizens!” I told him I was surprised that they let them in to Mexico actually. I had to shake my head and wonder that they didn’t think this might be an issue and check about it before the trip.

Getting home was uneventful. Other than the fact that I have decided this is not a good time of year to travel. It’s awesome getting away right before the holidays, but I had the holidays to prepare for when I got home and a major paper to write for school. Not doing this again, at least until I finish school.

I did thoroughly enjoy meeting Suzanne and John, and Janette and Ian, and Maggie and Det. It was also great to meet Sheila and George, Levy and Reba, Lydia and Martin, and Kenneth. I hope I didn’t forget anyone.

In a few days we are returning to Mexico. Spending a few days with friends at the new Secrets Playa Mujeres and then home to the Grand, to meet up with more friends. As always, thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed it, and maybe found something that was useful. Or if not useful, then funny.


This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Hey Andrea, thanks for all your great posts and pics ! We are big Iberostar fans so seeing your photos brings back fine memories of the Maya and Grand. You’re a good story teller and I love to read all your posts ! Looking forward to more of the same… Have a wonderful summer, Thx again 😎👏👍

    1. Thanks so much for reading and for your kind comments.

  2. Thank you for making my 2014 week at the Grand so special. it is amazing to see the same time period through different eyes. George and I really enjoyed meeting you and Zung.

  3. Sheila, it was so nice meeting you and George!

  4. It was nice meeting you in person finally. Enjoy your upcoming split trip, looking forward to your thoughts on SPM and travelling solo to the Grand.

    1. Nice meeting you too Ken. Keep your fingers crossed for good weather for me!n

  5. That breakfast buffet is massive. I’m drooling over those donuts. Enjoy SPM. I plan on going in September.

  6. Another great trip report Chica A! Can’t wait to get back!!

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