Dominican Republic Welcomes Sunscape Puerto Plata by AMResorts

Numerous industry leaders gathered at the grand opening of the Sunscape® Puerto Plata Dominican Republic, inaugurated by AMResorts®, a subsidiary of Apple Leisure Group®. Mr. Danilo Medina, the President of the Dominican Republic, performed the ribbon cutting ceremony, unveiling the product of the region’s economic status, creating employment opportunities for more than 842 people.

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First-Ever Vacation Commitment Summit

First-Ever Vacation Commitment Summit

Recently, a new organization——held the first ever Vacation Commitment Summit in NYC.

The Vacation Commitment Summit supports a nationwide effort to improve employee health and efficiency by encouraging Americans to use their paid vacation time. This has become a major topic in our “vacation starved society.” [Read more…]

Karma Royal Group Presents The Reef

Karma Royal Group Presents The Reef

Karma Royal Group The ReefKarma Royal Group opens their newest resort in Indonesia, The Reef. Located on the Gilis islands—a small trio of islands off the coast of Indonesia—the resort is the perfect destination for international travelers. The Reef is located on the island of Gili Meno, just a short distance from Bali.

Chairman and CEO of Karma Royal Group, John Spence said,

“The Reef embodies the fulfilment of everyone’s Robinson Crusoe fantasy of being stranded on an exotic tropical island. If your idea of a perfect holiday is to literally leave the world behind, go barefoot in the sand, celebrate incredible sunsets, then it’s time to discover The Reef at Gil Meno. A Chakra Resort for the sophisticated leisure traveler who appreciates the fun of laidback luxury, exploring local culture and emerging destinations, where you can simply get lost and maybe – in the process – find yourself all over again. At Chakra Resorts – life’s an adventure!”

The Reef resort is set on large property of about 400 acres, however only one-quarter of the land has been developed for the resort. The remaining areas have been preserved as a tropical rainforest, providing a serene atmosphere for guests. Beautiful plants surrounding the resort are carried through the overall theme of its design, bringing palm trees and tropical flowers into the main areas and guest rooms.

The beautiful white sand beaches of Gili Meno are also a prominent feature of the resort and can be seen from many of the guest rooms. Inside the resort, you’ll see many materials indigenous to the area. For example, Bamboo is used in many architectural features.

Guest rooms are designed in “lumbung” style bungalows. Each bungalow faces the water and offers a private balcony. The lumbung bungalow is an architectural style unique to The Gilis, Lombok, and Bali. The structures are built with natural materials such as bamboo and other local woods. According to Indonesian legend, the lumbungs were used to store rice under the protection of the goddess Demi Sri. More recently, these bungalows are used for general storage and boutique lodging.

Each room can accommodate up to four guests and features a private kitchen among its amenities. Don’t want to cook on vacation? That’s ok, in the main area of the resort, the Reef’s Karma Beach Club offers dinning for over 70 guests for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The chefs of the Karma Beach Club also utilize local resources with fresh seafood and produce.

There are many activities around the resort for guests to enjoy, including snorkeling and scuba diving in The Gilis’ famous coral reef. If you prefer to stay out of the water, you can enjoy a glass-bottom boat to view the colorful reef and wildlife surrounding the island. Back on the island you can relax in luxurious day beds right on the beach.

To learn more about The Reef and Karma Group, visit

Study Shows Taking Vacations Can Boost Productivity

Study Shows Taking Vacations Can Boost Productivity

A recent study conducted by the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) measured the effect of vacation time on an employee’s productivity.

The study found that employees who took vacations showed higher levels of productivity, increased morale, and improved job satisfaction.

“In addition to the standard HR benefit package at U.S. Travel, I believe in rewarding my employees with additional time off,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association. “Time away from work allows my team to recharge and return to the office more motivated, creative and innovative.”

SHRM is the world’s largest association for HR management. For this study, SHRM randomly selected 481 of their 250,000 members of HR professionals to participate. While these participants were all U.S. based, SHRM’s members come from over 140 countries worldwide. The study took place from August 22nd – September 25th, 2013.

Still, Americans are not utilizing their paid time off. This “Vacation’s Impact on the Workplace” survey had shown that the average employee does not use all of his or her vacation time. In fact, 61 percent of American employees have three or more vacations days left over at year’s end.

Utilizing vacation time can offer advantages for both employee and employer. If productivity increases once the employee returns from a vacation, the vacation is also a perk for the employer. The entire organization can benefit from more productive employees and a happier workplace.

Seventy percent of organizations polled have policies that prohibit employees from rolling over unused vacation days. This “use it or lose it” policy is meant to motivate employees to use their vacation days within the calendar year. Companies feel that this helps to retain employees, as they will be happier in their roles.

President and CEO of ARDA, Howard Nusbaum said, “The timeshare industry has been advocating for regular vacations through our members and our consumer website, Timeshare owners are more likely to take their vacation since it’s pre-paid, which is one huge benefit to owning a timeshare.”

Perhaps timeshare ownership is the secret to making the most of your vacation days. After all, if you have a vacation already paid in full, you are more likely to use it. For those owners with fixed week timeshares, you’ll even be able to request your vacation a year in advance.

Additional Vacation Benefits

  • Increased Productivity: 77 percent of supervisors consider their employees who take vacation time more productive than those who do not.
  • Increase Happiness: Results show that employees who used all of their vacation time also show increased satisfaction in their roles.
  • Better Overall Morale: When the vacation time is used across the organization, employees with enjoy a better workplace atmosphere. In fact, nine out of ten participants felt that utilizing vacation time across the organization led to a happier workplace.

Still, time is left unused. Results show that six out of ten organizations stated that employees had at least three unused vacations days every year.

For more information regarding this study and the advantages to using vacation time, please visit ARDA’s websites: The Travel Effect and Vacation Better.