Diwali 2017

Kids,

The Diwali festival was one that we heard many things about when we landed in Mumbai.  Throughout my 10 years of working with BMI I knew only that the office basically shuts down during this festival and people take time off work.  I compared it to our Christmas holiday in the US.

We decided in September that we had done a great job scheduling trips for our longer breaks from school, but had yet to take advantage of the shorter long weekends.  At ASB you had Wednesday through Friday off school, so we started to look for location.  We knew that traveling anywhere far away would make the trip mostly travel, which we weren’t for since we still had vivid memories of our trip from the US.  So, we decided to stay in India.

Goa is a town located south of Mumbai about 430 kilometers (270 miles) along the coast of the Arabian Sea.  One distinctive thing about Goa is that it was much less densely populated than Mumbai.  This was a major factor in its appeal for this vacation.

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Hotel Lobby

We planned a relaxing getaway with no plans to get out and see any sights.  This was a suggestion that we received when talking to people about moving to Mumbai.  They recommended that the hustle of the city will wear on you if you’re not used to it, so a get away ,even if close, can break that cycle and be refreshing.

We decided to stay at the Marriott on the Arabian Sea so that if we wanted we could step out and go for a walk.  When we landed in Goa we hopped into a hotel provided transport and made the roughly 45 minute drive to the coast.  The scenery was beautiful and it was refreshing to know that open fields and trees still existed.  One distinctive characteristic of this trip was the roads.  They wound left and right and up and down pretty much the entire trip.  About 5 minutes from the hotel it was to much for Christopher and he had some issues.  Luckily mom is always prepared.  Once we arrived at the hotel everything was back to normal.

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Welcoming Comittee

Arriving at the hotel, it was nestled back into what appeared a residential area that we would have never found had we needed to.  The hotel was a very nice Marriott with canopy out front and security ready to take our bags and put them through the x-ray machine.  Another daily occurrence in India.

A group of people took our bags, while another group got our information.  Lucky for us I tried out the new online checkin tool before we got there so there was nothing to do but for them to hand us our room keys.  They had a couple of guys our front singing to new guests, which the boys really got a kick out of.

The hotel wasn’t as big as the Renaissance in Mumbai, but it was big enough.  The pool was out back overlooking the Arabian sea, 4 restaurants located throughout the grounds, and a kids club.

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Kids Club

During these extended periods of reduced chaos we took the opportunity to sit out in the lobby and enjoy the view while Madelyn watched her iPad.  Lucky for us the time usually aligned with happy hour, so it was rather awesome.

When you weren’t I the lobby we spent most of our time at the pool just enjoying the sun. I think it’s safe to say that all of got some color that weekend, even me.

The grounds were much larger than they looked from the size of the front elevation.  The pool was probably 20-30 yards long and set next to one of the several restaurants at the hotel.  This restaurant was their seafood restaurant and had a swim up bar in the pool. We decided not to try out the restaurant because of the fish concern, being so close to monsoon.

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Dinner at AZ.U.R.

There were two restaurants that we frequented and really enjoyed.  They were Wan Hao and AZ.U.R.  AZ.U.R was the soft landing restaurant and served international foods.  Pizza is always a good option for Johnathon and Christopher, while Madelyn will eat anything.  They served breakfast, lunch, and dinner in this restaurant.  The Breakfast was amazing and had a similar sized spread as the breakfast at Fritelli Fresh. The special difference was they made Spiderman Web Pancakes.

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Pool view overlooking the Arabian Sea

The pool wasn’t huge, but seemed to fit the amount of people there perfectly.  It wasn’t to deep and had a baby pool near by.

After being escorted to our room we learned that the kids had the option for complementary ice cream deserts, which we took advantage of.  The room came with hand written notes for each member of the family thanking us for staying and requesting that we ask for anything we needed.  It was off to a great start.

After being escorted to our room we learned that the kids had the option for complementary ice cream deserts, which we took advantage of.  The room came with hand written notes for each member of the family thanking us for staying and requesting that we ask for anything we needed.  It was off to a great start.

The hotel wasn’t as big as the Renaissance in Mumbai, but it was big enough.  The pool was out back overlooking the Arabian sea, 4 restaurants located throughout the grounds, and a kids club.

If you had asked Johnathon and Christopher they would have told you that the entire trip was dependent on the existence of the kids club.

In the kids club they had movies, video games, toys, foosball, and air hockey.  Parents could drop off kids, 2 or older, in the room with hotel attendants and leave them there while they went and had dinner or drinks…or anything else for that matter.  As soon as the boys learned of this place they begged to go.  So who were we to tell you no.

Love,

Mom & Dad

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