An All-Inclusive Honeymoon in our own backyard? Yes, you heard that right! Michelle and Mike recently enjoyed their amazing honeymoon, April 10 – 15, 2021, at the adults only all-inclusive resort, Bungalows, in Key Largo, FL. Read on as Michelle shares her experience finding a relaxing oasis in the midst of a pandemic and why Bungalows should top your list for your next getaway!
The Trip Planning from Start to Finish
Our honeymoon planning began all the way back in October 2019, when D’Amico Travel had booked an amazing trip to Sandals Emerald Bay in the Bahamas. And you can imagine what came next.
In March 2020, we were forced to put our vacation on hold when all the Bahamas resorts all shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic and it was unknown as to when the resorts would open again. When it was first announced that our resort was temporarily closed, D’Amico Travel immediately reached out to us to let us know our options & got the resort to agree to the same (lower) price for new dates! Heather’s team continued to give us updates throughout the pandemic.
We chose to move our Bahamas vacation to April 2021 in hopes that the resort would be open again by that time. In the beginning of 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions were still pretty strict when it came to travel. Heather’s team informed us about having to get tested to reenter the states. With the fear of putting of jobs in jeopardy if we were to get stuck in the Bahamas, we decided that canceling our trip was the best option. So we called Heather to voice our concern. Heather knew this was a very special trip for us, so she got to work to find a vacation destination worthy of a honeymoon but within the country. And that’s how we ended up at Bungalow Key Largo!
Once we had our Key Largo trip booked and confirmed, Heather and her team told us everything that we needed to know about the resort from fees that needed to be paid, transportation options, explaining what restaurants needed to be booked, etc. Every detail of our trip was perfectly outlined and explained to us so that we had no surprises upon arrival. We received itinerary emails before our departure date to ensure we knew exactly what to expect. Check-in was flawless. D’Amico Travel had taken care of all of our accommodations so it was just a matter of picking up our key and sipping on the cocktails provided!
During our trip, D’Amico travel was available to answer any questions. We really didn’t have many because we were already very familiar with the resort by Heather and her team ahead of time.
When our trip sadly came to an end, as per the rest of our experience, everything flowed as expected. Check out was a breeze and we went on our way to head back home after an amazing week!
The resort was an absolute dream!! Mike and I flew into Fort Lauderdale, rented a car, and had about 1.5 hour drive from the airport to Key Largo. When we got to the resort, we were greeted by the sweetest concierge, given tropical cocktails to enjoy and brought inside to the Front Desk bungalow to check-in. The resort provided their own itinerary that laid out all of our restaurant reservation times and all of the activities/events happening during the time we were there (yoga, cornhole tournaments, boat cruises, etc).
Once check-in was done (it was quick!), we got into a jeep and were taken beyond the gates into the private, enclosed resort that felt like a tropical oasis!! Next, we were given a complete tour of the property while continuing to enjoy our cocktails! We got to stay in our very own bungalow with a private backyard and deck, seating areas and an outdoor shower/bathtub. Our bungalow also included 2 baby blue cruiser bikes that we used to get around to the resort and to take relaxing bike rides. The rooms were gorgeous and very comfy! The ceilings were high and the room itself was immaculately clean. This was the perfect oasis for honeymooners like me and Mike because being in the Bungalow felt like we were the only two people in the entire resort. We were able to relax outside in a private setting and still be a quick walk or bike ride away from the excitement.
In terms of food, we didn’t have a bad meal the entire week! The resort has 3 restaurants included in the all-inclusive,
- Fish Tales
- Sea Senior
- Sunset Tiki Bar
It also has a steakhouse that is included in the all-inclusive if you stay 4+ nights called Bogie and Bacall’s, otherwise there is an additional charge to dine here.
We had breakfast at Fish Tales every morning and then circulated through the other restaurants for lunch and dinner during our time there. Fish Tales had a little bit of everything from pizza and salads to sandwiches. Then at dinner, the menu switched to a seafood restaurant also serving pasta, steak, etc. Sea Senior served Mexican dishes for lunch, and we enjoyed nachos, tacos and quesadillas. When dinner came, the restaurant served a more gourmet style of Mexican cuisine which was a nice change of pace from the daytime menu. Sunset Tiki Bar was a great spot to grab something quick for lunch or a more casual dinner. Lastly, Bogie and Bacall’s, which we found out was named after the stars from the movie Key Largo, Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, provides the most extravagant dining experience available at Bungalow. It was delicious! We each had a filet mignon with appetizers including wagyu beef carpaccio, escargot, and white truffle mac and cheese. There were also 2 bars that didn’t serve food but had a great atmosphere to relax – Hemmingway’s and the Living Room. The Living Room has TVs with comfy couches and we spent some time playing monopoly (one of the many board games provided by the resort) and sipping on wine as my Mike caught up on sports.
The overall experience was RELAXING. The resort is made up of 2 pool areas with completely different vibes, and beaches to lounge on throughout the resort. There’s one large pool surrounded by lounge chairs and a jacuzzi that’s only a few feet away from the ocean. The entire area overlooks the ocean so you have a view from anywhere you decide to swim! The beach surrounding the pool/jacuzzi are made up of lounge chairs with umbrella tents or cabanas that sit on the edge of the water. Any seat you choose is still paradise! We spent some of our days in this area and had one wonderful night sipping on cocktails in a cabana as the sun was setting.
The 2nd pool area is called the Zen Pool. The Zen Pool is a secluded section in the middle of the resort surrounded by greenery. As you walk into the Zen Pool area you hear relaxing spa music and everything around you just slows down. The seating area is made up of comfy day beds with curtains for privacy, a large pool and an even more private jacuzzi area! Mike and I spend an entire day just lounging on the daybeds in the Zen Pool and we were even able to order lunch poolside. The resort gave us options for boat cruises or water activities. Mike and I thought about partaking but we were having such a relaxing time at the pool and beach that the days just came and went. It was nice to have those options!
COVID-wise, we felt very, very safe. Masks had to be worn at check-in since it was inside, when walking in all of the indoor bars and restaurants until you were seated and when in the jeep. Since most of the restaurants and activity areas are outdoors, we didn’t have to wear the mask as often as usual. I felt that everyone was abiding by the rules when needed, but it wasn’t to the point where it became a burden. We also noticed that lounge chairs were wiped down and new towels were distributed between guests. Resort employees all wore masks outside as well as inside.
Planning a Honeymoon During a Pandemic
The most difficult part for us was figuring out what we were going to do about our Bahamas vacation. That alone became very stressful when the pandemic began. The Bahamas trip that we had originally planned would have been our first all-inclusive vacation outside of the country so we were very nervous about leaving the US in general, let alone, adding the COVID-19 restrictions to the mix. When Heather suggested Key Largo, it was like a weight of anxiety was lifted off of us knowing that we could have a similar experience in an environment that make us feel safe during this time. Heather and her team really listened to our concerns and understood why we were so worried about traveling. We knew that D’Amico Travel had other clients traveling out of the US during that time so instead of trying to talk us into keeping our trip, Heather went the extra mile to really determine what would be the right move for us — which was Key Largo, FL. Once we decided to move forward with Bungalow, we really didn’t stress or worry because we knew everything was going to be taken care of for us.
How did D’Amico Travel go above and beyond to make your honeymoon special?
Everyone at D’Amico Travel sincerely cared about giving us an amazing experience. Heather made sure that we had a great bungalow in a central location in the resort. They confirmed our itinerary with us and gave us information about the area to be sure we knew exactly what to expect. The only way we would have gotten more guidance is if Heather and her team traveled with us. LOL! They really did a great job of making such a special event even more wonderful!
What advice would you give to someone considering travel right now?
The best advice I can give is to do your research, find a place where you feel comfortable traveling and definitely go through a travel agent. I don’t know what I would have done during the pandemic if we didn’t have D’Amico Travel updating us on the travel bans and making us aware of what our options were in terms of canceling or moving our trip. We could have lost a lot of money in 2020 if we didn’t have D’Amico Travel recommending that we purchase travel insurance, the best time to move our trip and so much more. As small as these things are, they make a difference. Even as the pandemic began to get better, I still feel that going through a travel agency made our trip less stressful and more of a real vacation. First, Mike and I never would have known that Bungalow existed or that it was a reputable resort if it weren’t for D’Amico Travel. Also, there were so many small facts and details that we had to consider while booking this vacation. The advice and recommendations that Heather and her team gave us helped us to pull all of those details together effortlessly.
Our experience was better than we could have ever imagined! Having the security of D’Amico Travel allowed us to enjoy our vacation knowing that there was someone to handle anything if it were to go wrong (which it didn’t!). I am extremely impressed by their attention to detail and the ease, on our end, of booking an all-inclusive vacation. We are ready to finally venture out to the Bahamas and we know that it will be a stress-free experience this time around with D’Amico Travel handling our accommodations.