The wedding celebration of my cousin Melanie and her now husband Bob was nothing short of spectacular.
Let's start from the beginning though, because Lord knows I'm going to have to break this trip down into two posts because so much fun was had.
CK and I departed from CLE on Wednesday of last week landing hassle free in RSW and picked up our handy dandy Avis rental car to head to Naples, Florida and the Ritz Carlton Naples Golf Resort - our home for the next five nights.
The Ritz Carlton brand precedes itself so I knew we were going to be on a beautiful property, and boy did we (and everyone that was saying there for the wedding) get the full Ritz treatment - the staff and every item of food we had was outstanding.
Wednesday, when we landed, the majority of the family hadn't arrived yet and it had just finished raining so CK and I joined my Uncle David and Thea Joanna for lunch outside with glasses of prosecco to properly kick off our vacation.
Even though the wedding brought lots of family events and activities CK and made a point to have date night our first night in Naples with a fancy dinner at Truluck's. We put on our Sunday (Wednesday) best and drank and dined like swanky people. The service was impeccable but the food was good, not great. Well, the carrot cake was life changing - I'm still thinking about that one - but weirdly the king crab legs I ordered were only so-so. And for market price (a whopping $97 for the plate) was it possible they were too fresh? The world may never know. Regardless, the experience was still very pleasant and romantic.
Thursday, more and more family rolled into Naples and while the weather was still just so-so we headed to the pool and vacationed it up. The Thursday night meal though is what I still remember most from the day. Myself, CK, Thea Joanna, Uncle David, my Mom and my cousins Cathi and Greg dined our faces off at Cafe & Bar Lurcat. OMG the food was amazing, such a great meal with such great company and you're damn right that if I ever go back to Naples I'm heading here again. Ironically our service at this place was ho-hum, but with flawless food that will always win in my book.
Friday was a beautiful day weather wise a huge crew of us headed to the Ritz Carlton Naples Beach Resort for the day to take in the obvious... the beach! As a guest at the golf resort you're able to be shuttled back and forth between the two resorts, it's a great sell for the beach and golf lovers, lemme tell ya.
We lounged, we swam, we drank bubbles and mojitos, and I personally, didn't realize it then but I was getting fried to a crisp - rookie move, I know, but after two days of overcast sky I was more than ready for the Florida sun.
|My Thea Eros raising our flag on the beach which means, COCKTAIL TIME!! Also, a shot of the Ritz pool and pretty pretty sky and palm trees, aka paradise.|
After a day on the beach we (the entire family and everyone in town for the wedding) showered up and got ready for a BBQ on the beach at the Ritz - live music, fruity beach drinks and a glorious spread of food - all in celebration of the beautiful, wonderful and happy couple.
|Bob and Melanie on the night before their wedding - man, they are perfect for each other!|
|Our transportation from the golf Ritz to the beach Ritz on Friday night was a trolley - fun right? Top left - Jason and Sissy! Top right - me and CK! Bottom shot - my cousins, Dina + Jason and Anthony + Mara! Good looking group.|
|A shot of the BBQ Beach Party set up + my sissy serving fruity beach drinks + Ariel, you remember her from Melanie's bridal shower right?|
|One of the best, most generous and awesome families around - The Kaplanis family - Scott, Marcia, Melanie and Aris.|
|Breathtaking sunset time in Naples, Florida! + My mom and Thea Eros in matching stripes + Sissy and Jason + Davida and Scott|
We attempted to make Friday night an early evening, with the big wedding the following day and all, but a cocktail back at the golf resort was calling our name - so why not?
It was vacation!
And that vacation isn't over yet (on this blog at least)... so stay tuned for part two.