WESTIN RIOMAR RESORT AND VILLAS, PUERTO RICO
The Ocean Club, located at the villas, provides a complimentary upscale continental breakfast for villa guests; lunch and dinner are also served in a casual, relaxed atmosphere. The interior architecture is beautiful; sweeping open-beam whitewashed ceilings with fabric bird mobiles and banks of windows looking out to the ocean. You can also dine al fresco at this restaurant, with a multi-level wrap-around patio that fronts onto a peaceful pool with fountains.
Light fare might be good for a midday snack, but this resort offers a wide array of exceptional restaurants.
THE PRESENTATIONS [AT SHIMAS] ARE WORKS OF ART...
The main restaurant for the resort is Marbella, located below the lobby of the main hotel building. Breakfast is an elaborate hot and cold buffet; lunch and dinner is served from a menu. The food is beautifully presented and the service is impeccable.
Shimas, an oriental bistro located on the lower level of the main resort building, offers sushi, sashimi, and an array of Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Indonesian and other Asian fare. Fun and funky, the food is just superb, the presentations are works of art, and as in all the restaurants throughout the resort, service is exceptional.
Lnbc17travel.com/photoalbums/riomar/ocated above the golf pro shop, The Grille Room offers steakhouse fare and exquisite views. It's open all day; reservations are required for dinner, when it gets exceptionally busy.
Palio, the resort's "signature" restaurant, boasts a four-diamond rating. Its innovative, award-winning chef creates menus of Northern Italian flavor using fresh local ingredients. Stately, quiet, elegant; a pianist accompanies your dining.
TENNIS PLAYERS NEEDN'T FEEL NEGLECTED...
There are several other restaurants, lounges, and bars on the property, ranging from Cactus Jack's above the Tennis Center (famous for its ribs) to beachfront casual dining and lounge appetizers in any number of the resort's bars. All of the restaurants cater to families; some have their own children's menu, others use the menu from Club Iguana. And of course there is also 24-hour in-villa dining via room service.
17th Hole, River Course
The resort is world-renowned for its golf, with two spectacular courses. The River Course, designed by Greg Norman, is a par 72, 6,945 yard design framed by mountains, lush indigenous flora, and the Mamayes River. The Ocean Course, designed by Tom and George Fazio, also a par 72, is one of the most popular in the Caribbean.
Tennis players needn't feel neglected, as the resort offers 13 Har-Tru courts, including night play, a team of instructors from Peter Burwash International, a pro shop, and equipment rental.
Every watersport imaginable is available through the activites desk at the resort, from SCUBA lessons to snorkeling trips; motorized and non-powered equipment including windsurfers, kayaks, sea bikes and wave runners are available for rental. The resort also offers complimentary activities throughout the day for every level of vacationer: Bingo, tan contests, merengue lessons, aerobics and beach volleyball are just a few of the selections available.
Although the resort, both the main hotel and the villa property, is ideal for honeymooners, retirees, anniversary celebrants and singles, it excels at its "family inclusion." Club Iguana, the resort's "kid's club," provides a complete vacation experience for the little ones while allowing some kidless respite time for the parents. Choose from all-day sessions, morning or afternoon only, and a nighttime session that allows mom and dad to dance under the stars, experience romantic dining à deux, or play at the resort's casino. A full-service spa rounds out the total resort experience.
So, for those craving elegance, spacious accommodation, pampering (the twice-daily maid service is great, but the nighttime turndown is a true luxury), fine dining, golf, watersports, tennis, beautiful beaches or any ONE of these attributes, The Ocean Villas at Westin Rio Mar Beach is an ideal vacation venue.
All photos copyright Jana M. Jones 2000
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