Vacaciones de Primavera

Unfortunately it’s over, but we had fun! My family and I, along with my sister and her family, vacationed in Dominican Republic.  We stayed at Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa.  This is an all inclusive resort about 25 minutes for the airport.  We were all in for a treat!!

We (Casa de Leyva) flew out of Miami directly to Punta Cana. SN: I grew up in MIA….and the airport still sucks! Too many people…too many concourses…too much going on!! 😝. From Miami, it was only an 1 hour and 20 minutes.  Before we knew it…we were at the resort and met up with my sister and crew. 

We did a little pool time when we first arrived….

Source: Resort website

 and beach 


In most all inclusive resorts, there are a variety of restaurants to choose from.  Most of them have foods that you can find in the states: French, Italian, Asian fusion, etc.  When we travel, we like to at least try local fare.  We stumbled upon the DR from an episode of Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations on the Travel Channel.  My BIL was ready to go!!!  We ate Oceana on property.  Hubs, being Cuban American, used his fluency in Español, to tell our waiter what kind of food we were looking for.  Lorenzo (our waiter) knew exactly what to do… 

 LOBSTER!  I don’t eat lobster and had the braised short ribs, but man…everyone loved it!   

Julian and I


Aidan, me, and Julian (looking COOL!)


All of my loves!!!❤️


Jolie, my niece (with her photo bombing Mama aka my sister)


#1 nephew Ray, Mo, and BIL Pete


Jolie returned the photo bombing favor! 😂


Oldest cousin and the youngest, Gavin

The first evening was a success! A stroll back to the room allowed a great photo op 


Day 1 (first full day) brought a beautiful morning….

   We had a great breakfast at Oceana and time at the pool again.  I can’t tell you how many cocktails I had in this trip, but that’s the beauty of all inclusive!! 
The property had many other sites to see… 


 I’m not a big fan of birds because they kind of freak me out. But these were so pretty, I overcame the uncomfortable feeling to snap a few photos. These “lovely” birds were my alarm clocks every single morning!  Forget about hearing the roar of the ocean…I heard the crowing of flamingos and peacocks! 

Lunch lended to a Dominican favorite …

 Sancocho: hearty soup with different meats and veggies.  It’s a popular Dominican meal and very filling! It’s served with white rice.  This is the exact meal we saw on Anthony Bourdain’s show. 

I woke up on Day 2 needing to do some exercise.  I managed a run on the beach that was challenging.  I could only get in 1.88 miles, but it was better than nothing. At the end of my run….

 …..these guys were there to greet me. #freakout

Another great breakfast and we (Mo and I) had a nice surprise from our hubs..facials and massages at the Dreams Spa by Pevonia.   Whoa!! I’d only had one other massage in my life but never had a facial.  I should say that I will be having another one….soon!   

Post spa treatment selfie!!

 What a treat!!!

Day 3 started with no run (because I slept in!) and a great breakfast.  After hanging around the pool and beach again, we had another treat for lunch from our “guy” Lorenzo at Oceana.. 

 Chicarrones (fried pork skin and meat), tostones (fried plantains), white rice, habichuelas (red beans).  This is another Latin favorite that I have had the pleasure of eating at home! 

Day 4, sadly our last day, allowed us to have a traditional Dominican breakfast  

 Front to back: Tostones, Mangu (mashed plantains),Fried eggs with Dominican salami, cooked onions, and Fried cheese. 

We were sad to leave but we had such wonderful folks that took care of us in the resturant…

 Lorenzo and Andrea with the Kid Crew (Julian and Marc in the back; L to R: Aidan, Jolie, and Ray; Marc in the front)

My likes: 

  • the pool and the beach. I/we couldn’t get enough.
  • the authentic Dominican food and not just the “stuff” we could get at home.
  • All inclusive! #nuffsaid
  • All the helpful staff- friendly and helpful (when needed)

My dislikes:

  • We didn’t give ourselves enough time to leave the property for excursions. #nexttime
  • The property could have used some minor upgrades, but it was still a nice place to stay. 

It was  fabulous vacation with my wonderful family.  Once again, we ate and drank our way through a town…this time in a different country!  I wish we could have stayed longer but back to reality, it is.  (So we can go again!!)

Adios, DR! Until next time…..

How was your vacaciones de primavera?

4 thoughts on “Vacaciones de Primavera

  1. Mom says:

    I’m on a permanent vacation – retirement!

    But by the calendar, I spent Soring Break in
    CA with my dearest hermana, Cristina. Cruisin’
    CA in her new cobalt blue convertible Mustang. Top up, too off! WooWee! 🎉🎉🎉

    The second week was spent in AZ. Gampa (Sarge) connected with his two oldest grand-
    daughters, his only grandson-in-law, and his
    two great granddaughters.

    A good time was had by all!


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