Paula Schwegler, CTA
Paula has 18 years of experience with Central Travel. She thoroughly enjoys the industry and constantly renews her familiarity with new destinations and all the changes in some of the more popular ones. She holds a Certified Travel Associate (CTA) designation from The Travel Institute and is committed to professionalism in the industry.
Paula is located in our Central Ave office.
Interests & Specialties
Paula enjoys traveling with friends and family and has taken four Carnival cruises and has experienced the Harmony of the Seas with Royal Caribbean. If you want the inside scoop on a family vacation - land or sea - Paula can help you! She is very familiar with the most popular Caribbean and Mexico destinations and has completed the Sandals Specialist course. Cancun and Mayan Riviera are high on her list along with Punta Cana.
MY RECENT TRIPS
I have just returned from a lovely trip to Aruba. Located in the south Caribbean, north of South America, Aruba is a year-round haven with gorgeous, white-sand beaches, cooling trade winds and warm, friendly people. Aruba is located below the hurricane belt so visiting all year long is good. They only get around 16 inches of rain the yearly mainly October through January where temperatures average mid 80’s and a bit lower December through March.
Oranjestad, Aruba’s capital, is a historic port city with a colorful, Dutch colonial charm. Its harbor village is home to breathtaking natural wonders, designer shopping, glittering casinos, lively nightlife and great golf. Aruba’s countryside is dotted with colorful, country-style houses amid a cacti-studded desert landscape.
I found the island to be very safe and you can get a taxi mostly anywhere for under $10.00 so an all-inclusive is not necessary. Palm Beach on the west coast is where many of the resorts are located and the waters are very calm on this side with a breeze most days.
Several resorts were visited but my favorite was the Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino. This was formally the Radisson Resort and was the first one built on Palm Beach. The plus to that is they have the best largest and longest beach of any. The grounds are fantastic with many palm trees and greenery. Hilton did a multi-million dollar renovation in 2015-2016 and brought it up to modern day standards. The lobby is a wonderful welcoming open air one with a huge lobby bar and coffee shop. It has a large winding pool with a sandy zero entry section. They have a kids club 4-12 years and do things with them off the property like bike riding and the Butterfly farm.
They have family connecting rooms where one king will connect to a two double bedded room. They are changing the bathrooms so that they all will have new showers and are taking out the tubs. Most are already done. This property has no resort fee and they have beach bar service. Seventy percent of guests are Americans. I would highly recommend this property for families or couples – it will not disappoint!
More Adventures from Paula Schwegler, CTA ...
My family and I cruised to the Western Caribbean itinerary on the Harmony of the Seas stopping at Royal Caribbean’s private island, Labadee, Haiti in 2017. I was really impressed with the size of the island and the different beach areas you could go to, you wouldn’t know that 5,000 or so people were on the island at the same time. Buffet lunch was pretty good and they had the longest Zipline, and it was fun watching people doing it.
The other stops were Cozumel and Falmouth, Jamaica and both had nice shopping area right at the pier if you didn’t do a shore excursion. I used ShoreTrips and did a great Jeep tour in Cozumel and a Dunn’s River and beach lunch tour in Jamaica, both were great!
The children on the ship seemed to have plenty to do with the 3 body water slides, 1 slide you went down in a sack (The Abyss), the 2 rock climbing walls, and the 2 surf simulators. Dining options were plentiful and the variety of the food and service in the main dining rooms, were great. We did op to do one specialty restaurant called Wonderland and the experience was fantastic and I would highly recommend clients do that one for something different and special.
The ship is so advanced with all the upgraded technology and the RCCL app was very useful to know when and what was happening at all times on the ship. It worked on every smart phone whether or not you purchased the WiFi package called Voom, or not. We did have the WiFi service and it worked pretty well but found that you had to keep putting your password in several times a day.
I would highly recommend this ship for people who want to take the next step up from what they are used to in cruising!
Beaches Ocho Rios has something for everyone in the family. If you're game for "surf & turf," from a huge action-adventure waterpark to championship golf for the whole family, look no further than Beaches Ocho Rios all-inclusive resort, voted among the Top 10 Best Beach Resorts by Parents magazine.
I really liked this property and the staff was very attentive and caring and you could totally see that when they were interacting with the guest. They have certified nannies in their kids camps so the parents an feel good about leaving them and have a little alone time. The clubs are open from 9am to 9pm and they group them from infants 0-2, Toddlers 3-4, kids 5-7, Pre-adolescent 8-10, tweens 11-14, and then teens 15-17. 222 rooms all have a king-size bed or two doubles and a roll away can be brought in for a 5th person. They have X box, microwave and refrigerators stocked with juices, water, and sodas in all rooms with tub and shower. For the entertainment, they have live music, family shows, disco nightly ( for adults and earlier for teens). They even have an adult’s only Piano Bar Sing along 3 times a week. Kids love the waterpark here and the main pool located in the Caribbean Village section in the middle of the resort is where they hang out.
Having been to several Sandals and Beaches properties in Jamaica, I was excited to see the Sandals Emerald Bay, Sandals Antigua, and Beaches Turks and Caicos. On the recent Destination trip in October 2014, I had the opportunity to stay at Beaches Turks and Caicos and experience much of what it had to offer. All I can say is WOW! The beach itself is the most white, soft sand I have seen and the water is truly breathtaking. The multitudes of blues are unbelievable. This is perfect resort for the whole family to have luxury accommodations, gourmet food, and age-appropriate clubs and activities for everyone. The Italian Village, which is one of four distinct areas, is the best place for families to stay. It is closest to the Kids Club and Pirates Island Waterpark and pool. Great vacation for a Multi-Generation vacation!
Sandals Emerald Bay is a couples only resort on the Great Exuma Island in the Bahamas. This resort caters to couples that like free golf as they have an 18-hole Greg Norman designed course right on the property. The luxury experience from rooms, to 7 Fine Discovery Dining restaurants, to a pampering experience in the 16,000 square foot Red Lane Spa. This is the place to get it all.
Sandals Antigua is a couples only resort located on Dickenson Bay, one of the 365 beautiful beaches on Antigua and is only a 15-minute ride from the V C Bird International Airport. What a lovely property set right on the beach with two areas to stay. The Caribbean Village is very lush and rooms have luxury furnishing with a Caribbean flare none over three stories high. Many of the rooms are directly on the Beach and the Red Lane Spa and the Fitness center are located here. If you are looking for more of a Modern feel then the Mediterranean high rise ocean view rooms would be perfect. You can shop and satisfy your sweet tooth at St. Marks Square Center. This is a very romantic property, great for any couple celebrating their love.
Puerto Vallarta Mexico is a beautiful destination! I was really surprised at how lush and mountainous this region of Mexico was. Most of the resort hotels are located on the beaches of the Hotel Zone considered the Downtown area or north in the area known as Riviera Nayarit. Once a small fishing village, Puerto Vallarta has become
a favorite spot for families, couples, and singles.
With the golden sand and different greens of the water, there are many types of all-inclusive resorts to choose from. Whether you prefer the Luxury of the Gran Velas Riviera Nayarit, the elegance of the Riu Palace Pacifico, or the space of a two or three bedroom Villa at the Marival Residences and World Spa, I can help you get there. Call me today and take advantage of the seasonal direct air service from Detroit.
Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, it is as nice as I remember. Many more resorts have made their way to this Caribbean destination. Looking for a moderately priced resort with things to do for your teens, then Ocean Blue and Sands would be the perfect place.
Maybe you are taking that second honeymoon or celebrating an anniversary and want to find an upscale property, you should think about staying at the Iberostar Grand Bavaro. This adult resort is a great way to pamper yourself in the spa and have fine dining every night.
You still want an all adult resort but don't need all the up-scale amenities, there is the Barcelo Bavaro Beach resort waiting for you with its Caribbean feel and intimate setting. This smaller resort has privileges with the Barcelo Bavaro Palace Deluxe right next door. You can shop, eat and see the evening shows by taking the resort tram over at any time to this larger, modern, resort which caterers to singles, families, and couples. Then you can go back to your cozy Barcelo Bavaro Beach. You have your own lovely beach and restaurant just for the adults staying there. Give me a call and I can help you find the perfect place for you!