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The Sands at Grace Bay
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All reviewsocean viewhemingways restaurantgrace bayscreened in porchgrocery storefull kitchenwasher and dryerrum punchan umbrellasands resorthobie catsother resortspaddle boardsbeautiful beachon site restaurantcoral gardensrented a car
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1,571 - 1,576 of 1,973 reviews
Reviewed August 2, 2009

We read hundreds of reviews about resorts in Providenciales and eventually picked the Sands. We couldn't have made a better choice.
Firstly, Grace Bay is AMAZING. There's a reason it's constantly rated amongst the top beaches in the world. So if you book a resort that's in Grace bay, you're certain to have perfect blue water and pristine white sand..

The Beach.
The Sands has free kayaks, snorkels and hobie cats to take advantage of the beautiful ocean. There are more than enough beach umbrellas to go around. We never got down to the beach before 10 or 11, but always had plenty of umbrellas to choose from.

The Resort.
All of the rooms are close to the beach, and the lazy river / pool system in the Sands is a great set up for cooling down after hours. The store has a few essentials (at a premium price) and there is a cocktail party with free rum punch, beer and appetizers on Tuesdays.
We took a long walk down the beach for a couple of miles and saw all the other resorts. The Sands had ALL of them beat. Most of the other resorts are further away from the beachfront, most of them didn't have a good beach setup (equipment, beach space, umbrelles etc etc) and actually, most of them seemed eerily deserted. We wanted a quiet holiday, but not staying in an empty resort. If you want crazy nightlife, go to ClubMed or the casino. If you want a family focused resort with tons of activities, then you should go to Beaches. We walked past there a couple of times, and it was madness. Kids screaming and loud music. Not our idea of an island getaway.

The Island

The island is fairly basic, and almost all of the activities and sights in Provo are contained to the beaches. Apart from the free activities at the Sands, they also have plenty of half and full day tours. We did a half day conch diving trip with Glass bottom tours. It was amazing. We even caught our own lunch from the ocean floor, and got to keep the shells!
We went to the local IGA supermarket early in our trip, and it was the best decision we made. We got enough food to last the week, and ended up only going out to eat for a few meals. We also got a bottle of rum and some fruit juice, to take our own rum punch down to the beach!

The Food.
Hemmingways is one of the most reasonably priced restaurants on the island. The food is basic, but it's very good, and there is a lot of it. Service in the restaurant is hit or miss, but that seems to be the case anywhere in Provo. Take a trip to Da Conch Shack on a Thursday (if you don't mind an expensive taxi ride). They have a live reggae band and serve conch in all its tasty forms.

The Room.
We got the least expensive type of room in the resort, meaning we had no view or balcony. Our courtyard studio was simple, but very well equipped. It's not what you would expect for a 4 star room (in the US), but we found it adequate. You barely spend any time in the room anyway!

So, should you go?...
Definately. When we go back to Turks and Caicos, the sands is where we'll be going. It is the perfect island getaway. Quiet, charming and fun!

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank aussiebeachbum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2009

We stayed at The Sands at Grace Bay for a week in 2007. We had a two bedroom unit facing the ocean. The rooms were of good size, clean and well stocked. We enjoyed the large screened porch during the evenings.
The beach is amazing, soft sand and crystal clear blue water.
We ate at Hemingways or would cook a meal in our kitchen and eat in. The only negative I can think of is that we had to thoroughly check our bill because charges were added that were not ours. We brought this to the attention of the staff and the charges were removed without incident. We would certainly return to The Sands.

  • Stayed: January 2007, traveled with family
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2  Thank cpwest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 15, 2009

Our stay at the Sands Resort on Grace Bay was during the period of 7/8/09 thru 7/15/09 for my son's wedding held on the beach at Point Grace, absolutely out-of-this-world! Immediate family and friends (30) of us came to TCI for the destination wedding. My group of 15 people all stayed at the Sands Resort, which was the best in service and hospitality that I have ever experienced on a vacation. The staff that greeted us was very accommodating and also welcoming. The suite in Building 5 (3 bedroom oceanview) fully equipped with a full kitchen, washer/dryer, dishwasher and screened in balcony overlooking the ocean was worth waking up to each morning. The beach was the cleanest ever seen and the pools/spa were amazing. All the children in the group had a great time trying them all out. Hemingway's staff and food were great, including Tracy and all the other servers who brought out food always with a smile on their face. Drinks on the beach were just as enjoyable.
Our transportation from the airport - VIP Limo - arranged through Ali and Ms. Virgil who picked us up with a stop along the way to the IGA market to pick-up some groceries for the suite filled us in on the island history and places to see. We also used VIP Limo for the return trip to the airport with Mr. Virgil who was equally as hospitable.
None of our group wanted to leave when the trip reached an end. We are all talking about coming back next year for a return trip.
The Conk Shack was great, and Corey and the band that night also played at the wedding reception, they were fantastic as well. We ate at Bella Luna, Baci, Hemingways, as well as Grace's Cottage, and the food was very good at all.
The only expensive part of the trip was grocery prices at the local IGA, and the taxi rides all over town, (charge per person usually $4, $7, or $8 pp) gets very expensive to go to local attractions or restaurants with a group of 7 people (2 children). Airport arrival and departure process was rather slow with only 1 line for AA flights. Not too much to buy in the way of souvenairs there or anywhere on TCI. Plenty of water sports, and local attractions nearby. Sands Resort had computer access and many other amenities for guests.
Overall our trip was wonderful, and we all wish we could live there all year round! Can't wait to come back!!!!

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
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2  Thank MariaC51
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2009

We vacationed on TCI for the first time July 1st-8th. We're a family of four from Florida and we vacation in the Caribbean one or two times per year, generally visiting Aruba every spring and enjoying a cruise to various ports every winter. We've visited Four Seasons Nevis and The Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman, but we more often vacation at Marriott's and cruise with Holland America and Disney. We decided to visit TCI this summer because it was 1. a new island for us, 2. we wanted to see the water for ourselves, 3. we only had a week for vacation so we wanted to stay closer to home. We picked The Sands at Grace Bay because we enjoy the room and convenience of a two bedroom condo on vacation and we were looking for a relatively inexpensive vacation this time around.

It's been said countless times and it's true...Grace Bay is beautiful...the water is calm and clear and inviting and the sand is soft and endless. Really special for the Caribbean. We also visited Leeward, Chalk Sound and Sapodilla Bay. All pretty...the color of Chalk Sound is beyond amazing...but for a day at the beach, we were happy to stay at Grace Bay.

The Sands itself is a moderate Resort. The lobby is small and understated, but adequate. We were greeted with a friendly smile and a rum punch and we were promptly checked into our room...6203, a two bedroom oceanview...which is exactly what we had reserved. No one offered to help with our luggage, so we poked around and found a luggage cart to unload our rental car and move in for the week.

The room was basically clean (with just a hint of a musty smell). The appliances were dated, and the linens were a bit worn, but the furniture and appointments were adequate. We especially enjoyed the large screened patio with two comfortable chairs and ottomans and a dining table for four. We spend part of most evenings on the porch playing cards and enjoying the pleasant temperatures.

The grounds are nicely maintained and pretty. The lazy river is small, but our six year old son enjoyed "exploring" along the river. The river connects two small pools and neither was particularly busy all week long. They provide a nice quiet spot for a quick dip in the water or a nap on a cushioned lounge chair.

The beach front pool is a bit larger and more people tend to congregate around it...but finding a chair and umbrella is rarely a problem. There is a children's pool here, so if you want total peace and quiet, pick a different pool. This pool is adjacent to Hemingways, so a cold drink is never far away and they serve poolside. No happy hour, but the drinks are reasonable for a resort.

We ate lunch most days at Hemingways, both on their deck and in our beach chairs. Service was a bit uneven, but it was fine for the most part and even friendly and prompt some days. The food was typical beach bar fare...and the menu is varied enough that there is no need to eat the same thing everyday.

The pool hut and activities desk is also located at the beachside pool. Towels were mostly pentiful, although they ran out a few afternoons. And there are plenty of excursion options available through Meagan at Ocean Vibes. Very convenient.

The beach is just lovely. And no worries if you don't get a palapa in the morning. The staff will gladly place chairs with an umbrella for you after the tiki huts are taken. We happily tipped for the service because the sun was simply too intense to go without shade.

We spent more time in the ocean this trip. The water is just so gorgeous and inviting we couldn't resist. The resort provides floats and sand toys, as well as Hobie Cats, snorkel gear and kayaks...all free of charge, which is a really nice perk.

There are no resorts immediately adjacent to The Sands on either side, which is nice. The beach never felt crowded. There are very few beach vendors, which we appreciated, as well. We walked at least a mile in each direction most days. Our son especially enjoyed snorkeling at coral gardens...we saw a sea turtle, as well as the coral and many fish. We never spotted JoJo, the "famous" dolphin.

We shopped at both Graceway locations dinner in the condo a few nights. We also ate at Mango Reef (good), Pizza Pizza (okay), Saltmills Cafe (okay) and Coco Bistro (very good.) We rented a car from Avis which has a convenient airport location.

We'd recommend The Sands to anyone looking for a low key family beach vacation and not expecting the Four Seasons (or even a Marriott Vacation Club.) It's a good value for TCI and you'll enjoy a beautiful stretch of beach on an exceptional bay.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
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6  Thank Lisa H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 2, 2009

I stayed at The Sands June 23-28th for my destination wedding. We had never stayed there before but felt that it was the best value and atmosphere for our friends and family traveling down for our wedding. It was definitely a great choice for this purpose. There were many rooms options available for all the guests and the size was perfect. The resort was pretty full due to another wedding group- which added to the friendly and fun atmosphere.
Here are my take aways-
1. As I read on other reviews- the cleaning service was definitely not what you would expect from the class of the hotel. We found out that if you tip the maids daily, your room is definitely cleaned up and restocked.
2. BEST ROOM EVER- 3306, it's a one bedroom ocean view. It's HUGE with an amazing porch with views up and down the beach. We also stayed in 3207 which was almost as good.
3. Front Desk- they were hot and cold. Sometimes they were really friendly and accomodating, other times they were a bit cold and not helpful. We had booked a 2 bedroom oceanview, we actually got a 1 bedroom courtyard with an open door connecting to a studio oceanview. They would not even check for any other room, they obviously overbooked those suites.
4. Airport taxi service- if you are with a large group, make sure you sign up everyone for a shuttle to the airport for your departure, we had a very confusing and annoyying time just trying to get 10 people in 1 van to get to the airport.
5. As said in other reviews, hemingways was "ok"- nothing spectacular but good food. Slow but somewhat friendly service.

This resort totally fulfilled our needs for friends and family joining together for our wedding. I would not say this would be my first choice for a romantic vacation with my husband.
We love Provo and will definitely be back for years to come! This is an amzaing island to relax and get away, with a beach to die for.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled with friends
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1  Thank abstravel49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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