I’ve been a fan of Club Med ever since my first trip at the age of six to the pink sand beaches of Eluthera with my father. Even as a child, I knew I wanted to return one day as an employee (a “GO” in Club Med lingo, French for “gentil organisateur”, which translates into “nice/kind host”).
I spent the good part of 2 years between 1999-2000 living between Sonora Bay, Mexico and Paradise Island in the Bahamas as a tennis pro/singer/dancer/Crazy Signs fanatic.
In case you haven’t caught it yet on YouTube yet, you can watch the clever montage I created of my days as a GO at Paradise Island here (disclaimer: it’s a little long and contains a lot of bad hair, 90’s hits & beach shots…don’t say I didn’t warn you 😉
While working for the Club wasn’t all fun in the sun, I have nothing but fond memories of my experiences there.
Which is why, years later, I wanted to know more about what it was like on the ‘other side’ as an adult; yes, I longed to be a GM again! (GM = ‘gentil membre’ in French, meaning nice/kind guest). Sure, I had traveled to numerous Club Meds with my father and then as a GO, but I never got to truly participate in the full Club Med experience as an adult guest.
When I reached out to Club Med last year, my family and I were lucky enough to visit for a weekend after the first phase of their Sandpiper Bay renovation had been completed. Located only minutes from where we used to live in South Florida (Port St. Lucie, to be exact), the only North-American property had been transformed with modern features and thoughtful additions everywhere from the kids’ club to the guest rooms.
So when I was invited back recently for a blogger trip to see the completed renovation, I was ecstatic! But this time, our families were not to be included.
After all, Club Med Sandpiper Bay is known for it’s Mini-Club. So much more than babysitting, Mini-Club not only cares for children from morning til night, but they fill their days with all the fun things the adults get to do….and more! We’re talking swimming, circus, flying trapeze, tennis, skateboarding, crafts, cooking and more; plus, it’s all included as part of the Club Med experience.
Just look at my then 5 year old son swinging from the trapeze on our trip last spring:
But, as fate would have it, my husband wasn’t even able to get away from work these next two weeks, so I decided to do what I’ve heard many adults commonly do: go on vacation with other adult friends. (I know, novel concept).
Since I was allowed one guest, I immediately called my best friend in Florida and asked if she would sacrifice her weekend to drive up and meet me. After all, we’ve been trying to plan a girls’ weekend (unsuccessfully I might add) ever since I moved up to Nashville over three years ago.
For years we’ve had this dream of vacationing together, just the two of us, and our schedule would look something like this:
-Then separate to read those books we’ve been waiting to dive into, journal and genuinely ponder all the deeply meaningful thoughts that we’ve been stirring around in our head but haven’t had adequate time to develop.
-Come back together for lunch to discuss said ideas above
-Find a hammock to relax on together and spill all those deep dark secrets only best friends have
-Dip into a pool and find a cool, comfy chair to lounge on
-Eat dinner and reminisce about our day and how we could do it all again the next day…
So guess what: that’s what we’re doing!
Well, maybe not exactly that schedule. Though you can do as little or as much as you like at Club Med, with their world-renowned sports programs, I don’t believe I’ll be able to sit still for too long there 😉 I’m sure we’ll dabble in tennis, golf, sailing & yoga, and there’s rumors swirling that we’ll even get to try out their new l’Occitane spa. And of course you know I’ll be indulging in their infamous White Chocolate Bread. (Oh, the things I’ll suffer for the sake of my job!).
So if I don’t get back to you immediately over the next few days, know that I’m hard at work researching what may very well be your next vacation spot…