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“What a great experience!”
Review of Sands at Grace Bay

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Sands at Grace Bay
Ranked #21 of 44 Hotels in Providenciales
Certificate of Excellence
Englewood, Colorado
Level 6 Contributor
194 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 313 helpful votes
“What a great experience!”
Reviewed April 20, 2008

We spent 6 nights at the Sands and we were still sorry to leave! In terms of location, it is absolutely exceptional. The beach is fantastic, so turquoise, calm, pristine, and unspoiled. Also, not busy at all. There is no construction going anywhere close to the Sands and you can walk through the beach to great restaurants.
The hotel - this is the first time in 6 years that we don't stay at the Ritz Carlton or Four Seasons (we figured the kids are not toddlers anymore, so we don't need all the services/infrastructure and we never use their spas, anyway) and we loved the easy going and relaxed atmosphere. It was the first time we made good friends with other guests as well. The pools are a lot of fun for the kids, and the hotel feels very safe. Rooms are clean and spacious, and the service is so-so: good if you absolutely go with the flow, dubious if you need something a little bit out of the context (for example, there is no room service and I tried to have someone bring me 2 raw eggs from the restaurant as a favor - which of course I mentioned would be well remunerated with a nice tip - caused major confusion in the employees' minds. For the price you pay for this WONDERFUL vacation these services' glitches are forgiven, just keep in mind that everything moves in ISLAND TIME. Nice surprise is that there is free wireless internet in the rooms and an amazing number of cable channels. We brought our all DVD player which for our family is a must.
We had a great half-day boat private tour (which runs for $800 in a 29') which was pricey but worth it.
We highly recommend this trip and will come back anytime we need a tropical vacation!

  • Liked — The location, the pools, the spectacular beach, the relaxed feel
  • Disliked — no complaints
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank PhantomOP_2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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richmond tx
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed April 16, 2008

Spent a wonderful and relaxing week at the Sands April 5-12. First few days we were there with friends....we booked the oceanfront studio and they were in the garden studio. Would definitely spend the extra money on the oceanfront. We had a wonderful view of the pool, beach, and Hemingway's.

Our studio was more like a one bedroom with separate living and bedroom. Our king sized bed was soooo comfy we had trouble getting out of it in the mornings.

Hubby dived with Caicos Adventures and loved it...he has dived many places in the Caribbean and loved the large boats offered by CA. Took some great under water photos and enjoyed his week of diving. I am a "lay under the palapa all day" person and the beach is breathtaking here.....we love Cayman but have to admit this beach probably surpasses 7 mile.

We ate at some wonderful places and the food is what you expect across the Caribbean....expensive! We dined at Magnolia's, Tiki Hut, Aqua, Cafe Bistro, and Bay Bistro. They were all good but my fav food was at Bay Bistro....excellent key lime pie!!!!

We did drive out to Amanyara our last day just to see it....it is fabulous but we could never afford to stay there.....2 bloody Mary's and water were $48USD....a bit steep!

Turks and Caicos is really undergoing a "boom".....luxury condos being built everywhere. Looks like the island is enjoying a boom but yet the locals feel their economy is in trouble. They definitely need to update the airport if they are going to fill all of those condos which are being built.

We loved the island....was very clean.....and we loved The Sands at Grace Bay. Probably would stay there again if we return.

  • Liked — the room and view
  • Disliked — ---
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank islandgull
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbus, OH
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed April 10, 2008

I stayed at the Sands April 3rd - April 8th. The landscaping and overall condition of the property was very nice and well kept. The beach certainly lived up to the expectations, if you want to go somewhere with a beautiful beach, the Sands is a good pick.

I had a Gardenview Studio and it was actually little bigger than I anticipated. For the most part it was clean, there were some very small ants on the bathroom floor, but it's the Caribbean, you can't get away from all the bugs! My only real complaints about the stay or the resort in general was the mattress on the bed and having employees talking right outside my door at 6:00 and 7:00 in the morning.

The mattress was VERY hard and uncomfortable, I'm an easy person to please when it comes to room amenities but the mattress was way under par. I heard other guests complaining of theirs too so I know it wasn't just me. After a night of tossing and turning and getting very little sleep, I was awakened almost every morning between 6:00 and 7:00 by maintenance and housekeeping employees right outside my door talking and laughing. The exterior doors are not airtight by any means so it sounded like they were actually inside the room at times...and they were making no efforts to keep their voices down! So, if you get a ground level room and it's next to the stairs to the basement, ask for a new room!

The good things? The BEACH!!! Outstanding turquoise blue water and the sand on the beach is soooo soft.
Every room now has complimentary wireless internet access. The resort's website and even the handbook in the room states that wireless is only available in the concierge and the hospitality areas. There was a mention of access at Hemmingways so I asked the front desk about it and they told me then that the access is in all of the rooms now. Very helpful info if you're traveling with a laptop and need to keep up on e-mails once or twice a day.
Housekeeping comes around once every evening and drops off 2 bottles of water and checks to see if everything is ok. This is good considering the tap water tastes horrible, safe to drink, but not too pleasing to the taste buds!
Hemmingways! The food is very good. I only ate dinner there one night but had lunch twice. Ambiance in the evening is low key and comforting...don't feed the cat that roams around, well, if you do just don't attempt to pet it!

This was my first non-all-inclusive trip to the Caribbean. I really enjoyed being able to leave the resort and eat at off-site restaurants. The main key as that you can do this and feel safe. There is a small shopping area just to the East of the Sands (leave the resort and go down the street to the left) called The Saltmills. A portion of it is still under construction (as are many structures on the island), but there are 2 restaurants in the plaza and a few more just past it. Iguana was AWESOME!!! I highly recommend having dinner there one evening. Also ate at Danny Buoy's and Bella Luna. Both good but the portions were small for the price at Bella Luna and the service was shaky at Danny Buoy's.

Overall, a good vacation. I will definitely be returning to Provo, but may try a different resort next time just for hopes of a better night sleep! I am open to answering any questions if you want to ask.

  • Liked — The BEACH!
  • Disliked — The Bed!
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Caribbean_Lover_07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2008

My husband and I just returned from Provo and we had a very nice time. The trip started on a sour note- it rained (sometimes poured) the first two days we were there, when we started second-guessing our decision to come here (and the tourist books that touted minimal rainfall). But once the clouds cleared and the sun came out, the beach was absolutely beautiful. Make sure to walk East along the beach for clearer water and beautiful views.

The resort itself is pleasant. It's not a 5-star...expect to see a few "glitches" here and there like a crack in the wall or broken door frame, but the room was always clean and big enough to stay in. We originally booked a Gardenview Studio, which is sufficient, but we're New Yorkers deprived of sunlight and space so we decided to upgrade to the Oceanview Studio, which was very nice and spacious with a king size bed and sitting area as well as a netted patio that faced the sunsets. Jason the Concierge was incredibly sweet and helpful.

Hemingways is fine- it's reliable good food, but can get tiring after a while. As I said before, it's not 5-star- expect some wait times and the service was not consistent. Scotty the bartender makes THE best mojitos. As for other local restaurants, we tried Parallel23 at the Regents Palms- absolutely stunning from the setting to the service to the food (remember, you are paying for it), Anacoana at the Grace Bay Club which boasted beautiful outdoor settings with white pillows and an open-pit fire as well as an infinite bar, which are all very nice, but the service was horrible both of the times that we went. Note: we didn't dine there, but had some drinks and ordered some appetizers, which took about an hour to get to us. It's worth just to see the bar area just be forewarned of the service. Bella Luna- OK Italian food but not worth the prices. Pizza Pizza- excellent food and at reasonable prices. Speaking of- the price of food there is comparable to NYC. All of these restaurants, and several others, are walking distance.

If you're staying in a studio suite, you have a microwave (great for leftovers from the night before), a toaster, and a coffee machine. They also supply dishes. I do suggest doing what we did- bring snacks & some wine/drinks with you and a cooler (we have a portable fabric one that folded up in my suitcase)...it will save you some $$$$.

As for the area, there really isn't anything else to do - not many shops or bars, so if you're looking for a quiet escape, this is a great place to go. They do offer horse back riding, scuba, snorkeling, and parasailing. We kept ourselves entertained with good books, food, drinks, long walks along the beach, and relaxing naps on the beach. Oh, just know that the sun is bit stronger here, so load up on the sunblock if you're sensitive.

We never had any problems finding chairs at the beach. Yes, there are kids, and sometimes it got a little loud, but we weren't bothered. The pool area is nice as well.

  • Liked — Beautiful beach
  • Disliked — Only one dining option
  • Stayed April 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Era17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
Level 6 Contributor
43 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed March 21, 2008

We loved everything about our trip to Provo, including the Sands Resort. Our check in was quick and easy, the staff were very friendly and eager to please. They made us feel very welcome. This attitude was consistent throughout our entire stay. We had a two bedroom garden view unit and were extremely pleased with it. There was more than enough space and everything was so inviting. In all honesty the tile floors could have used a more thorough cleaning, but not so much that it was bothersome. The rest of the unit was sparkling clean. They provided twice daily maid service. We loved our full nicely equipped kitchen, washing machine and dryer, 2 full baths, plus dining and living areas. The decorations were Caribbean and the place just felt comfortable. The big patio with its nice furniture was a treat. We found it so delightfully peaceful to sit outside on it in the mornings and lounge around with a book. The grounds are beautiful with lots of different flowers blooming in all shades of pink, purple, yellow and white, also plenty of palm trees and many varieties of foliage. The grounds are spread out yet the walk to the beach is not far from any of the buildings.

The part of Grace Bay Beach in front of the Sands is beautiful and wide. The water is calm and clear. It is a gorgeous turquoise color and the sand is truly powder fine and white. There were plenty of palapas available, and if you got to the beach and they were all taken, an attendant would gladly place an umbrella in the sand in the spot of your choosing. Drink service was available at both the beach and oceanside pool. There were hobie cats, kayaks and one windsurfer available to use free of charge. When we checked out a hobie cat the attendant asked if we had ever used one. Since we had not he took us out and showed us how to use it first. He was so friendly and patient. We then went out solo and had a fun time.

There are 3 nice pools, 2 of which connect via meandering pools. My ten year old daughter loved these pools!! They were never crowded. She did find several other children to play with which was nice. The hot tub was also nice, although several of the jets were not working.

We ate at their restaurant Hemingway’s a total of 3 times (breakfast once, lunch once and dinner once). Food was pretty good (lunch was best) and service was mediocre. The setting by the ocean is lovely. The live music was late starting the Thursday we went but we did enjoy it very much. There is no room service available which I had considered a drawback before we went. But it didn’t matter once we were there because we enjoyed eating on the patio in the morning so much, and we saved money in the long run doing that.

Check out was quick and easy. I liked that they have a hospitality suite with a shower. We were able to enjoy more beach time on our last day even after we checked out.

I would definitely stay at The Sands again anytime.

  • Liked — Great location on Grace Bay Beach, beautiful grounds, friendly service
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank j'smomTexas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tillsonburg, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 12, 2008

Spent a great week at the Sands end of Feb. This was by far the nicest beach we have stayed on - the most beautiful water and sand every day. It was never too rough to snorkel every day at Coral Gardens which was absolutely wonderful right off the beach. We found the service to be average to above average for the Carribean and had lots of great meals around Provo. There was not much to shop for, and that just gave us more time to enjoy the pool and beach. There were a lot of young families with small children at this resort. Unfortunately, the kiddie pool overflowed into the main pool which I didn't care for. This was our only complaint. The grounds are well kept and lush - very pretty. Rooms are very clean and spacious but the screened patios were the best. We had the ocean view and didn't regret paying the extra. There's nothing like waking every morning to see the white sand and amazing blue waters just outside your window. Always chairs available at the beach or pool any time of the day.
We had rented a car and toured the island finding lots of private coves and beaches, although the best beach by far is right out front of the Sands. The island terrain is rocky and rough and not really lush, but the beaches and water make up for it. Lots of great Villas on the oceanfront and lots of real eastate for sale. Also made a special stop at the Conch Shack for the freshed conch ever. In fact, we ate at different restaurants every day and we really recommend the Tiki Hut at Turtle Cove Marina for excellent food and a little fun at reasonable prices. Played golf a few times as well. Nice course, but we've certainly played nicer courses for much less.
This island is expanding rapidly with construction every where. Not currently any construction either side of the Sands, but I'm sure it will just be a matter of time before they have new resorts to share the best beach ever. JoJo the dolphin even made a pass by one morning and was only about 12' off shore. Checked out some other areas and hotels, and would certainly recommend the Sands at Grace Bay to anyone looking for a quiet, relaxing, absolutely beautiful vacation.

  • Liked — cleanliness and beach
  • Disliked — the hard bed and kiddie pool overflow to main pool
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank rda_Ontario
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CT
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed March 11, 2008

My husband and I just returned from an 8 night stay at The Sands in Grace Bay. What a wonderful place to arrive after being herded like cattle in the one tiny airport on the island! My husband was worried we would not be able to enjoy the beach the first day, but we checked in, went to our lovely first floor garden view studio, unpacked, and changed into our swimsuits and were on the beach in no time.

The studio was great in that it had a small kitchenette (small fridge, microwave, utensils, etc.). And this unit had a washing machine and dryer, which were used by us daily (we played tennis and worked out every day). T

he Caribbean Sea in Turks is my absolute favorite place to swim. The water was cool but refreshing, and the beaches were pristine, with powdery white sand (that never got too hot). We rarely spent any time at the pool because we much preferred to swim in the ocean.

About a mile and a half from The Sands is another resort called Coral Gardens, we walked there to take in the snorkeling right offshore. We were able to see many colorful fish, a small ray, and even some baby sea turtles. We had been on snorkeling excursions in other locales and decided not to do one this trip, we liked Coral Gardens so much, we went twice.

A couple of tips regarding the local IGA, we went there on a Saturday night, and unless you are looking for an "Amazing Race" like experience, wait until Sunday morning to do your shopping. It seems all the locals do their food shopping on Saturday nights, and there were many resort vans parked out front, so the competition to get in and get out quickly was stiff. This is a very small grocery store (not the Super Stop and Shop by any means). The deli meats are NOT that great (no Boar's Head here), but the cheeses and fruits are wonderful. We bought breakfast and lunch staples to keep down our food costs, which worked out very well. The lines were very long, and our driver only gave us an hour to get everything we needed. One lone man in our group was almost left behind but I was able to find him in the nick of time.

Cab rides are expensive, $15 for a couple each way. Thankfully my husband and I found restaurants and shops within walking distance and only cabbed it three times (all three to Turtle Cove).

All in all, we had a wonderful time, the location is terrific, the rooms are great, the staff is friendly and very accommodating (we always got extra towels, the bed was turned down and there were two complimentary bottles of water waiting for us each night). The front desk staff was very helpful, and it was convenient that they could make recommendations and then reservations at the area restaurants, and call a cab when needed.

I would go back to The Sands again, even though there were a number of young children there, we were not bothered by them at all, this is definitely not a Beaches-type resort (thank god).

Feel free to email me with any questions you may have.

  • Liked — The location, great proximity to beach and shopping/dining.
  • Disliked — Can't think of anything.
  • Stayed March 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank EKJCt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sands at Grace Bay

Property: Sands at Grace Bay
Address: Grace Bay | PO Box 681, TKCA 1ZZ, Providenciales
Location: Caribbean > Turks and Caicos > Providenciales
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Providenciales
#15 Spa Hotel in Providenciales
#19 On the Beach Hotel in Providenciales
#19 Luxury Hotel in Providenciales
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sands at Grace Bay 4*
Number of rooms: 118
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Perfect harmony on Grace Bay Beach, Providenciales Experience an earthly wonder of sand and sea at our 114-suite luxury resort on Providenciales, Turks & Caicos Islands, British West Indies. Family-friendly, yet ideally suited for romantic getaways and wedding celebrations, The Sands at Grace Bay offers a harmonious balance of home comforts and sublime Caribbean elegance - as well as a picture perfect location on the sparkling shores of Grace Bay Beach. If you are dreaming of a beach holiday in the Caribbean that gives you the flexibility of having your own fully-equipped suite while enticing you with fine dining, pristine grounds and sigh-inducing vistas, we look forward to welcoming you to The Sands at Grace Bay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sands At Grace Bay Hotel Providenciales
Sands At Grace Bay Providenciales
Sands Grace Bay
Sands At Grace Bay Turks And Caicos/Providenciales

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