Sorry it took so long to post...spent 5 nights at Sands in April for family vacation. We were just glad to be together on vacation so we had a fine time despite some issues at Sands.
Arrival: Terse front desk personnel, seemed to be tolerating the arrival of
new guests from our flight.
Room: Not ready for several hours. When cleaned housekeeping had not
changed sheets on pull out bed and left four towels for five people. Issue could not be rectified that day apparently....on the advice of teenager who is an experienced Sands guest I found a housekeeping cart and appropriated a few towels and new sheets. Appliances not working:
blender, toaster, coffeemaker. Could not be corrected despite calls to desk and assurances that "we are doing our best to help you out". Thank you, but for the price I expected clean sheets and better than a three day response time. Furnishings worn and chair actually torn in places. Bathrooms basic, stained tubs, poor water pressure. Housekeeping service is included on your bill per day. Unfortunately on two days they failed to
show up at all. Late afternoon calls to desk eventually brought them in before we turned in for the night. The screened patio was nice though.
The resort: This is not a resort in the true sense. These are condo rentals
with a front desk. Be clear on that when you book, don't expect resort
service or accommodations. The landscaping was nice, but did not exceed expectations, the pools are unheated and small. The hammock area,
which I was looking forward to, unfortunately turned out to be a haven for a few teenage pot smokers. Same teens informed me they are repeat guests. Clearly the staff turned a blind eye. Be warned between the hours of 7-9 am or thereabouts, the staff waters the plantings along all the walkways. They use "brown" water for this purpose and the stench of sewage is most apparent and unappealing.
The beach: this is what it's all about. Quite nice long, white sand, pretty water, breezy all the time. Also littered with broken chairs piled up, some construction debris here and there and stray dogs. Some resorts looked deserted, with one or two guests on the beach. The Sands seemed the most lively of them all. Didn't bother with walking into Beaches. There are many wonderful beaches in the world, this one was quite nice but not
worth more than many others.
The island: Sad is the only word I have. Desert scape ruined by poor
planning/development. Construction projects incomplete, rusting
away along the main road, strip malls, litter etc. Waterfront properties are nice, but the rest of the island is tired and dusty.
The restaurants: The best part of the trip. We didn't find them too expensive at all! Food was great and service top notch. Anacoana, Bay Bistro, our favorites.
Tips: Agree on taxi prices with front desk person and taxi driver present.
They will claim they misunderstood each other. Use shuttle when possible.
If you are snorkeling etc. be aware trips can be cancelled last minute for
"too few reservations to make the trip profitable", unless of course you'd like to pay more per person! The best excursions I've heard about while there were with the eco guys at Deep Blue. Great on safety and clean equipment, which is more than I can say for Capt. Billy's pirate cave and snorkel trip. Banana boat was fun, Golf surprisingly was excellent. I'd not
heard great things about the course, but it was challenging and well kept
and yes it was a bit pricey, but worth the cost. The clubhouse at Provo Golf Club was great lunch. Check your bill carefully, many guests found many big errors, including long distance calls made from their rooms!
Overall: Too expensive for what it is, unless you are a diver, biologist, snorkeler. If like us you are just a vacationer, there are too many other great destinations to spend that much money on this one. One visit was enough for us, will go elsewhere next year.
- 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
- The Sands At Grace Bay Turks And Caicos/Providenciales