New Sunscape Resort in Punta Cana

Okay, not new from the ground up, but newly-rebranded. Earlier in November, Playa Hotels (a major investor in Apple Vacations and AMResorts) announced the acquisition of the Allegro Punta Cana resort, with the intention to renovate and rebrand to Sunscape Punta Cana. The new Sunscape is due to open December 22nd.

Always good news when AMResorts (Secrets, Dreams, Sunscape Resorts) opens a new hotel, as they really do it right. Fully all-inclusive, minibars in each room, a la carte dining with no reservations needed, and a top of the line children’s club at the Sunscape & Dreams Resorts, the Explorers Club.

The Allegro Punta Cana was a very popular mid-level resort, close to the airport (20 minute drive), with a huge free-form pool and a beautiful beachfront. They’re putting the finishing touches on some upgrades to bring the Allegro in line with the Sunscape brand, and we have an all-new web page set up. We plan to see it in-person while our agency is in Punta Cana for Dreams Punta Cana’s Super Bowl weekend, so we’ll have our usual flood of pictures posted then.


Berwick Travel Announces 2007 Pinnacle Award Winners

The agency’s five top rated resorts are awarded with the exclusive Pinnacle Award for outstanding service, staff, and amenities.


CINNAMINSON, NJ – Nov 21, 2007Berwick Travel today announced their 2007 Pinnacle Award winning all-inclusive resorts. The awards are based on feedback from returning clients, agency site inspections of the resorts, and the luxury features and amenities that each offers to its guests.

Based on client surveys over a 12 month period, five all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico were chosen to receive the prestigious Pinnacle Award. Two of the winning resorts are in the Riviera Maya, Mexico; two resorts are in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic; and one resort is in Negril, Jamaica. All five resorts have earned top ratings from tour operators in the industry, and all are considered five star or above.

In the Riviera Maya, Mexico (just south of Cancun), the two winning resorts are Secrets Capri Riviera Cancun and Excellence Riviera Cancun. Secrets Capri Riviera Cancun, the recipient of the AAA Four Diamond Award and named TripAdvisor’s Best Luxury Resort, is adults-only, featuring 24 hour room service, in-room minibars, and a quiet, laid-back atmosphere reflecting its Italian-style architecture and small intimate size. Excellence Riviera Cancun is also adults-only, and an all-suite property featuring 24 hour room service, in-room minibars, gourmet a la carte dining with no reservations needed, and a winding lagoon-style pool. It also offers the exclusive Excellence Club section for upgraded amenities and services.

In Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, the two winners are Dreams Punta Cana (formerly Sunscape The Beach)and Excellence Punta Cana. Dreams Punta Cana is a family-friendly upscale all-inclusive resort with 24 hour room service, in-room minibars, and a top-rated lagoon-style pool, plus gourmet a la carte dining with no reservations needed. The resort is in the midst of an $8 million upgrade which will enhance the already-luxurious resort and push it into the 5+ star category of Dreams Resorts. Excellence Punta Cana sits on a massive stretch of white sand beach in the very secluded Uvero Alto area of Punta Cana, and like its sister resort in Mexico, is adults-only, all-suite, 24 hour room service, mini-bars, plus the Excellence Club.

In Jamaica, the lone winner and top-rated resort for the destination is Couples Swept Away, an adults-only upscale resort located on Jamaica’s famous Seven Mile Beach. Newly expanded in 2006, the new Verandah section features in-room minibars and televisions, a departure from the original section with its quiet & secluded atmosphere, plus the new Great House with swim-up bar and two new restaurants.

“We are proud to be able to present these awards to our top resorts for 2007,” said Steve Umstead, Director of Marketing for Berwick Travel. “We have always received excellent reviews from clients returning from these properties, and we are confident in sending future guests to any of them. Each one offers a different experience, but all can be counted on to provide a top-of-the-line, luxurious, and enjoyable stay to the most discerning all-inclusive traveler.”

“We are very honored to be again awarded the Pinnacle Award by Berwick Travel,” said Matthew J. Mullen, Senior Director of Sales for AMResorts (parent company of Secrets, Dreams, and Sunscape Resorts.) “We strive to provide an ‘Unlimited-Luxury’ experience for all our guests, ensure high guest satisfaction and create a ‘guest-for-life.’ Our ‘Welcome Home’ philosophy at Secrets Resorts & Spas and Dreams Resorts & Spas strives to provide every indulgence imaginable and we are pleased that Berwick Travel has again singled out our resorts as exceptional.”

“We are truly honored to be awarded with Berwick Travel’s prestigious 2007 Pinnacle Award for our Excellence Riviera Cancun and Punta Cana properties,” said Ignacio Fernandez, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the Excellence Group. “Our long standing relationship with Berwick Travel has proven that they are as dedicated as we are in providing costumers with an outstanding level of service. We feel privileged to have been recognized by such a well-respected travel agency in the industry that mirrors the values we strongly believe in, and look forward to continuing that relationship.”

Berwick Travel’s 2007 Pinnacle Award Winners
Secrets Capri Riviera Cancun, Mexico
Excellence Riviera Cancun, Mexico
Excellence Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Dreams Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Couples Swept Away, Jamaica

About Berwick Travel
Berwick Travel (; is a family owned and operated travel agency founded in July 2001, with the belief in giving Internet pricing and convenience with the service & knowledge one expects from a local travel agency.

Berwick Travel, unlike most agencies, focuses specifically on a small group of hand-picked all-inclusive resorts, so that each Travel Counsultant can be experienced and knowledgeable in the resorts. Each Travel Consultant has undergone in-house training on products and services, as well as industry training from suppliers. In addition, Travel Consultants regularly visit many of the properties for inspections and tours, along with meetings with on-site resort management staff.

Berwick Travel has achieved several industry awards:
• Travel Impressions’ Best of the Best award for six straight years, including the prestigious Globe Award for the past five consecutive years.
• Apple Vacations’ Golden Apple status for top-producing agencies, including Premier Level for the past three years.
• Couples Resorts’ Platinum Level status for top-producing agencies.
• SuperClubs’ Diamond Level status for top-producing agencies.

Berwick Travel has also qualified as AMResorts Master Agents, Disney College of Knowledge and Earmarked Agency, Universal Parks & Resorts Specialists, and is an official Affiliated Agency of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).

For more information, contact:

Steve Umstead (
Director of Marketing

Berwick Travel Inc.
2108 Berwick Dr.
Cinnaminson, NJ 08077
(866) 278-8728

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Latest from Excellence Playa Mujeres

We keep getting that same question – is Excellence Playa Mujeres open?

Yes, of course! Little by little it’s becoming a complete resort – here’s the latest update from our friends at the Excellence Group:

• The Excellence Club Lounge, X-Lounge at the beach & fitness center are opened from last week.
• The SPA is also opened from the second week, and the two higher floors will open this week.
• Beach looks better, but there is still the “nortes” – the sea currents that come from the north. These currents take all the seaweed to the beach, but we have people the entire day cleaning the beach with the tractor and by hand. The beach is clean, but not inside the water.

We have seen a difference already on the comments from the clients we have at the hotel right now, 99% positive. People can not believe the hotel opened just 2 weeks ago!

Latest Excellence Playa Mujeres pictures

Update on Excellence Playa Mujeres

This just in from the Director of Sales for the Excellence Group:

All the services are opened but the Flavor Market, which is scheduled for Friday the 16th or Saturday the 17th.

We have clients at buildings 9,8 and 7, and as soon as occupancy will go up, we will have clients in other buildings (it does not make sense to split the clients if we are at 30-40%).

Today the SPA is open at the ground floor, with all the hydrotherapy area, beauty parlor and some treatment cabins, enough for the demand they have today. Plus pool and beach stations.

The beach is very clean and looks very nice, but there are sea grass in the first meter inside the ocean like “floating”, but as soon as it comes out, we clean it. We hope this very bad sea will go, and be as it was before very soon.

Thanks to our great friends at the Excellence Group for all their updates! You can see Excellence Playa Mujeres pictures here.

Yes, Excellence Playa Mujeres is open!

Jammin’ Cocktail of the Month!

Mojito Especial
Compliments of Sergio Roman, bartender at Excellence Playa Mujeres

2 ounces simple (sugar) syrup
• 1/2 lime
• 10 fresh mint leaves
• 1/2 cup ice
• splash of bitters (optional)
• 1 1/2 ounce dark rum
• 2 ounces club soda
• 1 sprig of mint for garnish
• 1 lime wedge for garnish

Juice the 1/2 lime into a tall glass. Cut the remain lime into quarters and add them to the glass. Stir and blend the mint leaves with the lime and syrup (or sugar) crushing the leaves to extract their flavor. Add the crushed ice, rum, and club soda and stir well to blend. Garnish with the lime wedge and mint sprig.

For a tastier variation, use Bacardi Limon (or other citrus flavored rum)!

Excellence Playa Mujeres opens – and we were there!

Adults-only luxury in Cancun!

Right on schedule, the newest Excellence Resort opened its doors the morning of November 1 – and we were very fortunate and proud to be their first guests! As usual we went overboard with photos – almost 90 pictures of the resort have been posted on our site, plus an additional (and very unique if we do say so!) handful of “before and after” photos showing sections of the resort under construction, then what they looked like after completion.

Click for Excellence Playa Mujeres pictures

Excellence Playa Mujeres is located about 10-15 minutes north of Cancun’s Hotel Zone, so about 25 minutes from the airport, in a very secluded area right across the water from Isla Mujeres. No other resorts around, only a golf course to one side and a residence complex and marina to the other. Absolutely gorgeous resort, very unique decor and style, with all the same great Excellence amenities and inclusions…plus one of the finest and most stunning rooms you’ll ever see, the Rooftop Terrace Suite! A show cooking restaurant, saltwater main pool with swim up bar, Oriental cuisine restaurant with teppanyaki tables and a sushi bar, top-shelf liquors and Mexican beers, wireless Internet access (at no additional charge) in the rooms and common areas, flat screen TV’s with DVD players, wait service at the pools and beach, and staff that always greets with a smile.

We saw some really interesting things during the first few days of opening – it’s amazing to see the resort and staff growing and improving right before our eyes! Seeing palm trees planted where they weren’t the day before…empty salt & pepper shakers on the tables for breakfast, only to be filled by lunch…having a wooden lounge seat on the balcony that has a plush cushion the next day…drinking Tecate beer from a can, replaced the next day by Dos Equis on tap…watching them printing out the room service menus to be put in the rooms…seeing the progress of the hand-made railing in the lobby…helping the staff with their English while they helped us with our Spanish – the first week a resort is open is always unique!

Some great room choices are in the Excellence Club section with stunning oceanviews (some with great looks at Isla Mujeres lit up at night), and of course the Rooftop Terrace – no better way to relax in the evening, or sunbathe in privacy! You can even order room service to be delivered on your rooftop. The Swim Up rooms have direct access to one of the seven different pools on property and don’t have any type of sidewalks in front, so they offer a little bit of privacy, along with the convenience of having your room steps from the pool.

Great rates going on for travel not only for the next month and a half, but also Early Booking Bonus special rates for travel January through April. Space is available, but now that they are fully open, they will sell out quickly. No better time to get in – if you’re looking for top of the line, adults-only, for your next trip, keep Excellence Playa Mujeres in mind!