Trip Report (2/22-3/4)

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Posted by VB-Michigan from ( on Wednesday, March 27, 2002 at 19:50:18 :

Had hoped to post this trip report much earlier, but came back to a busy work schedule which of course made me want to fly right back to Ixtapa/Zihu. Our ten day trip was great--weather beautiful every day. Pretty much got into a daily habit of a morning beach walk, relaxing during the afternoon around the pool, happy hour at one of our favorite spots (we seem to be adding a couple every year) and then enjoying a wonderful meal. Managed to play golf a couple of times in-between the road trips to Ixtapa Island and Las Gatas Beach. Can't wait to return in 2003!
Highlights of our trip:
1) We watched two whales right from the pool area jumping just off shore (in front of the rock formations) on our second day--really neat!
2) Went back to Ixtapa Island and found Aurelio our previous waiter still working at Cantimar restaurant. Best snorkeling we've had there and he again grilled us some delicious snapper/shrimp for dinner. We (four of us) had several pops, a few cervazos, dinner and our snorkeling gear for about $750P.
3) Visited Las Gatas beach and found another great locat1on to relax. We had the services of Franco all day and another great grilled dinner. The restaurant was the next to the last one on the beach called Olivia's.
4) Restaurant reviews: In order of best to least favorite:
Casa Bahia (best tuna I have ever had) and we got to watch the full moon rise over the harbor. Walter (the owner) took great care of us and even offered help working out the problem at the end of dinner regarding them not taking credit cards. We had to divide all our $$ but had enough to pay, leave a tip and still get a taxi back into town!
Garrabos is my favorite place for Paella (and was my choice on my BD). Everybody enjoyed their meals!
Casa Elvira had really good seafood and fresh fish (must be why they have been in business since '54). Their shrimp platter was awesome.
Los Mandiles (Mexican) and Raefiello's (Italian) right across the street in Ixtapa both rated high with our group of four. Los Mandiles has huge margaritas (no really huge!) and great chicken fajitas. Raefiello's shrimp ceasar salad was great and everybody enjoyed their pasta dishes (clams, shrimp, etc).
Cookie Factory: I think we had breakfast here four times--love those House pancakes with bananas, raisins and pecans! French Toast also rates very high and great service and coffee too.
Disappointments: Taboga's (new owner, new menu and not close to past quality) and Laguna (lot of hype, but nobody thought there dinners were special and the prices were one of the most expensive of the trip).
So that is the summary. Must admit we probably had a bit too many "happy hour" margaritas and fresh guacamole/salsa, but I'm sure in the next month or so we'll make some at home with the recipe we brought home!

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