History-making guests find combination of Sandals and Curacao hard to resist
Sandals is for lovers, and Perrin and Michael Riley seal their visit to Sandals Royal Curacao with a kiss while being checked in at the Club Sandals Lounge shortly after arrival on June 1. They were among the first couples making the historic trek to the newly opened resort in the Dutch-speaking island.

On Wednesday, June 1, 2022, the guests began streaming into the Sandals Royal Curacao Resort in Santa Barbara near the capital Willemstad. Their determination? To be among the first to savour the delights of the newest version of the Sandals creations.

Among those making the historic trek were young honeymooners, couples celebrating wedding anniversaries, and some attracted by the opening of a brand new Sandals. One elderly American couple had already chalked up 300 Sandals nights at other resorts across the Caribbean, making them top Diamond Club members.

“We just love Sandals and we have experienced the wonder of it all over many years,” chirped Jean Schneider, speaking on behalf of husband Vernon Schneider of Peoria, Arizona. “We couldn’t resist coming to this new Sandals.”

The distinction of being the historic first guests went to Talesha and Brandon Austin, he an electrical contractor and she a businesswoman out of Atlanta, Georgia, who chose Sandals Curacao to commemorate their 15th anniversary.

“It’s our first time to Curacao, but we have stayed previously at Sandals Royal Barbados and Beaches Negril, Jamaica with the children. It’s always been good. When we heard about the grand opening, we said, ‘Let’s go,’ ” gushed Talesha.

Paraguayan Matias Friedmann, who came on his honeymoon with his wife Alexia Estaque, said it was their first time to Curacao and Sandals, adding: “Some friends had told us that Sandals was a great resort and when we heard that it was opening in Curacao we wanted to go and experience it, along with the fine beaches there.”

Ashley and Willie Moore of Pearland, Texas, had tasted the delights at a Sandals in St Lucia, but it was their first time to Curacao, lured by the news of a new Sandals resort being opened in the Dutch-speaking island.

It was also the first Sandals outing for Perrin and Michael Riley of Indiana. They were there for their fourth anniversary and were attracted to Curacao by tales from their parents, who had visited before. The couple had honeymooned in Aruba, one of the sister islands of Curacao.

For Aimee Brooks and Joe Gibbens of Idaho, it was their fifth Sandals visit, having stayed at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort and Royal Caribbean in Jamaica. They had also vacationed with their kids at Beaches Turks and Caicos. The combination of Sandals and Curacao was “hard to resist”, they said.

— Desmond Allen

The Moores show their excitement on arrival at Sandals Royal Curacao
Jean and Vernon Schneider are members of the Diamond Club for completing over 300 nights at Sandals resorts. The couple could not resist checking into the newly minted Sandals Royal Curacao. (Photos: Joseph Wellington)
Aimee Brooks and her hubby Joe Gibbens get the red-carpet welcome to Sandals Royal Curacao by General Manager Kevin Clarke (left).

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