A long weekend getaway gave me the opportunity to test Club Med’s former slogan and my particular favorite, “The Antidote to Civilization.” Their new one is fine, “Where Happiness Means the World,” but I’m already happy enough, I just needed to tune out for a bit.
I choose Club Med Punta Cana, a ten-minute transfer from the Dominican Republic’s largest airport and a main hub for visitors from Europe and the Americas. While packing I had laid out my arrival goals along with my swimsuit, suntan lotion and hat – no cell phones, no shoes, and no wallet on property, the latter, one of the great things about all inclusives.
A palm tree and sandy beach lined-lagoon welcomes couples and families for a stay in paradise, with it’s new Zen Oasis for adults seeking a little more quietude after a day of water sports, yoga, massage and Club Med’s signature cuisine.
Guests can learn the art of the flying trapeze at “Creactive”, a joint venture circus-inspired playground created by Club Med and Cirque du Soleil. While it looked exciting, I kept my feet more planted on the ground and splashing in the water. Having just read Zen and the Art of Archery on the plane trip to Punta Cana, I did head to the club’s range to try the Zen-ish technique of not thinking but becoming one with the target. Bull’s-eye! (Though technically it was on my 15th arrow.)
Over the past 30 years I have taken myself off the grid at Club Med’s in Mexico, the Caribbean, and Tahiti. Each one has had its own unique character and the opportunity to explore the local cultures. While some are more focused on families and couples and others on singles, all give their guests the opportunity to get the most out of a getaway.
All Photographs Are © Mark Edward Harris
Mark Edward Harris Photographer Bio Mark Edward Harris’ assignments have taken him to 94 countries on six continents. His editorial work has appeared in publications such as Vanity Fair, LIFE, Time, GEO, Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, AFAR, Wallpaper, Casa Vogue, GQ Thailand, Money Magazine, Architectural Digest, The Los Angeles Times Magazine, and The London Sunday Times Travel Magazine as well as all the major photography and in-flight magazines. His commercial clients range from The Gap to Coca-Cola. He is the recipient of numerous awards including a CLIO, ACE, Aurora Gold, and Photographer of the Year at the Black & White Spider Awards. His books include Faces of the Twentieth Century: Master Photographers and Their Work, The Way of the Japanese Bath, Wanderlust, North Korea, South Korea, and Inside Iran. North Korea was named Photography Book of the Year at the International Photography Awards. Mark’s latest book, The Travel Photo Essay will be released by Focal Press in the fall of 2017.
Website: Mark Edward Harris
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