This was our second trip to the resort. We stayed in a Tuscan Suite with separate kids room. It was a little disappointing that you enter the suite through the kids room, and there is no common space, but otherwise the room was lovely. Two years ago we stayed in the Parrot Cay 1 bedroom Honeymoon suite in the Caribbean Village, and to be completely honest if we ever go back, I might choose to stay in the Parrot Cay suite versus the Italian village. In our old Parrot Cay suite( #606) , you entered the suite through the master bedroom which was much nicer if you have young children. The Living room (which we used as the bedroom for our son) in the Parrot Cay room is about twice as large as the kids’ room in the Italian Village suites. The Balcony in the Parrot Cay suite is at least 3 times the size of the standard Italian Village suites. And finally, the hot tub in the Parrot Cay suite is about twice the size of the hot tub in the Italian Village suites. Oh, and in the Parrot Cay suite we had a true wet bar, while in our Italian village suite the bar, fridge and microwave were just in a cabinet in the master bedroom. That said, it’s tough to beat the location and the view from the Italian Village Suites. One final note about the Italian Village Suites – They are all pretty much exactly the same inside until you get to the penthouse suites. So if you pay for a higher category suite in the IV, you are paying for view and location, but the room will be pretty much exactly like the lowest level IV room.
I saw someone post a negative review of camp sesame recently and I’d like to say that we had the complete opposite experience. I thought the women at camp sesame did a great job. They had some scheduled times when they showed videos or movies (usually in the evening), but they also had some really nice activities, and I never found my kids glued to the boob-tube when we picked them up. I also witnessed the camp teachers handle some tantrum-throwing kids really well. I was particularly impressed with the way one of the women handled a particularly upset child who was kicking and screaming. She was so calm and within about 1 minute she had soothed the little girl and she was perfectly calm and ready to play. I thought the teacher did a fantastic job dealing with a difficult situation. They also made me feel like they really adored my kids and one of the women remembered our older son from two years ago even though we had only brought him to camp a few times! We also spied over the hedges one day and watched the kids do a nature-walk with the teachers and Abby-kadabby and it was so charming and endearing and I think the kids actually learned a little something.
I found the food to be very good at most restaurants and it was by far the best at Le Petit Chataux. The shortrib was so delicious and the truffle risotto was perfect. I think the sushi bar has really improved since our last visit. I loved the pieces. They were very fresh and delicious. I also think they made a huge improvement at the Arizona lunch grill. The jerk chicken and pork are really wonderful, and there are a lot more grill options than I remember there being 2 years ago.
Another big improvement is that most (if not all) of the pools are heated now, but they are not so hot that it is not refreshing.
We never had any problem getting cabanas on the beach, although, is virtually impossible to get a cabana by the pool at the Italian village unless you have a butler, but we had no problem getting chairs in the sun or shade. Of course take this with a grain of salt b/c we went slightly before their high season really picks up. I did notice some people getting up and saving chairs at 6:30am which I thought was pretty ridiculous since, like I said, we had no problem finding chairs whenever we wanted them. I also noticed signs up that said that items that remained on chairs untouched for more than 2 hours would be removed and report to a certain area to retrieve your stuff. I think that ought to make a lot of people happy since I recall a major gripe in a lot of the reviews was seeing people put towels out on chairs and then never return (or return 4 hours later).
Our kids are still a little too young for snorkeling so we arranged a trip through the concierge to go on a sub-submarine ride. It was fun. My older son (3.5-years-old) liked it a lot, our 15-month-old was a little claustrophobic. The boat is very small and it can get a little stuffy. We did see some neat stuff (turtles, sea cucumbers, parrot fish), but nothing we hadn’t seen snorkeling, so I don’t think I’d recommend it, unless you can’t snorkel/dive or if you have young kids who are dying to see some underwater life. I think it was a little overpriced.
Oh, both of my kids LOVED the Sesame Street Parade. We didn’t bother going to the parade on our last trip b/c I thought, ‘big deal… a bunch of characters walking around.’ But, our older son wanted to go this year. Oh my goodness, it was actually a really neat parade with Bahamian musicians. Even my 15-month-old jumped up and started dancing and clapping. Very neat.
For the most part, the staff were really friendly and helpful. I found the concierge service to be much better this time around (although for whatever reason, the concierge over at the Caribbean village definitely seemed to know what they were doing more so than the concierge in the Italian village.) One highlight: I recently had this keratin protein treatment done to my hair. Any woman who has had it done knows that it is AWESOME, but it’s expensive and the one enemy of the protein treatment is salt water. Gah! So my hairdresser told me that if I planned to be in the ocean for more than 15 minutes or so, I should consider using a bathing cap. This of course horrified my husband, but I really didn’t want to ruin my hair and we wanted to go snorkling. The problem was, I searched high and low and could not find a bathing cap to buy. We called the concierge and they actually left the resort and found a shop to buy one for me within the hour and I just reimbursed her in cash.
Okay, so here is one little unfortunate part of the story. When I booked the trip, it came with a $250 spa credit if we booked an Italian Village room. It was very clearly on my email confirmation (which I foolishly had not printed out and brought with me). At check-out they told me that not only did they have no record of a spa credit, but that there was no way that I could have one since my arrival date was one of their black-out dates for spa credits. I told them that the email confirmation that they sent me very clearly stated that a $250 spa credit was indeed included. So they asked to see the email confirmation. I told them that if they could let me use one of their computers to log onto my email, I’d be more than happy to show it to them, but they told me that they could not allow me to use their computers. At this point I only had a few minutes before our shuttle left for the airport and I certainly wasn’t going to pay to activate the internet so that I could use it for 5 minutes to pull up an email that THEY sent to ME. I felt that one of the managers was being pretty obnoxious and flat out told me that there was nothing he could do for me. Another manager standing close by slipped me her card and told me to find the email at home and forward it to her. Unsurprisingly, I ran into two other guests having the exact same problem.
So of course as soon as we got home, I pulled up the email confirmation and just as I remembered, it was as clear as day that it included a $250 spa credit and there was NO fine print about any blackout dates.
I forwarded the email to the two managers with a short note telling them that there was some confusion about the credit and I was forwarding the confirmation as requested. I didn’t hear back from either one of them. So then I tracked down the email addresses for Adrian Whitehead (the hotel manager) and Donald Dagenais (the General Manager). I sent them a longer email basically letting them know that I was disappointed with the way this was handled. There is a little bit more to the story, but this review is probably long enough. In the end Adrian Whitehead personally called me to apologize and the $250 spa charge was reversed.
The situation left a little bit of a sour taste in my mouth and initially I felt that I would not be returning to Beaches again, but now that a little time has gone by I think I can appreciate that customer service on a whole is pretty fantastic there and I shouldn’t let the attitude of one or two people spoil my memory of the resort.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Dive into a one-of-a-kind, unbelievably exciting Beaches all-inclusive Turks & Caicos vacation for the whole family. A 45,000 square-foot waterpark; four magnificent villages, boasting the architecture and ambiance of Italy, France, the Caribbean and Key West; a 12-mile beach lapped by clear turquoise waters; endless fun activities for everyone, from tots to tweens and teens, featuring Sesame Street(R) characters, the new Xbox(R) Play Lounge and a sizzlin' teen disco, Liquid at Beaches-all located on one of the world's best beaches.19 Specialty dining options with everything from Caribbean to Japanese, Italian to French, Seafood to Sushi•7000-sq-ft retail village offering guests" high-end jewelry, fashion, candies, souvenirs•Our very own Pirates Island themed aqua-playground hosting one of the Caribbean"s most comprehensive water parks featuring nine slides, lazy river, surf simulator, water cannons, cranks and spray features•Kids of all ages can enjoy fun and games with Elmo and friends in our Caribbean Adventure with Sesame Street(R)•X-BOX(R) Play Lounge with plasma screens and the latest games on the market •Voted Beaches Resorts "World"s Leading Family All-Inclusive" 14 years in a row•Voted Beaches Turks & Caicos "Turks & Caicos Leading Resort" for the 4th year in a row•Voted Beaches Turks & Caicos "The Caribbean"s Leading Family All- Inclusive" for the 2nd year in a row•Six Star Diamond Award- Beaches Resorts "Keeping it Green", American Academy of Hospitality Sciences•Six Star Diamond Award- Beaches Turks & Caicos for the Italian Village•Five Star Diamond Award- The Resort, Le Petit Chateau Restaurant and Mario"s Restaurant ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Beaches Turks Caicos Providenciales
- Beaches Turks And Caicos Resort Villages And Spa Providenciales