For some couples, the idea of real island romance is a private Caribbean villa, without other guests. Just the two of you, alone, except for the occasional visit by a maid or chef.
These people are there to meet your special requests, to introduce you to Caribbean Island cuisine, and to make you feel pampered in what really is your home away from home.
St. John, St. Thomas, Jamaica, and Barbados are especially popular islands for Caribbean villa rentals.
Villas vary in price, services, and level of luxury. Before you make a commitment, inquire about:
- Maid service - Many Caribbean villas offer maid service before your arrival and after your departure. Additional cleaning services can be arranged for a surcharge. At other properties, you may have daily maid service. Check with the villa management company for details.
- Groceries - Are you allowed to send a deposit for groceries and have a cook stock the pantry before your arrival? Finding a refrigerator and cabinets ready with your favorite meals can be a big boost after a long flight.
- Chef service - Many villas can arrange for chef service as you choose: three meals a day, dinner only, or just one special meal. In Jamaica, villas typically include chef service. Check your options.
- Air conditioning - Don't simply assume your villa is air conditioned. Ever-present trade winds make this an optional feature. If it's more of a necessity than an option to you, inquire with the management.
- Car rental - Many Caribbean villas are located away from the popular resort areas. See if it would be to your advantage to rent a car to avoid expensive taxi rides for long hauls.
- Minimum stay requirement - Unlike the normal hotel minimums of three nights, villas often require a minimum seven night rental.
Many Caribbean resorts also offer villa rentals. These homes are located on the resort property and guests enjoy the security and services of the resort, while at the same time enjoying the space, facilities, and privacy of a villa home.
Some resorts that include villa rentals are Peter Island, Four Seasons Nevis, Jumby Bay, and Bitter End Yacht Club in the British Virgin Islands.
About the authors:
Husband and wife team Paris Permenter and John Bigley have authored over 20 guidebooks. They also edit the romantic travel magazine Lovetripper.com.
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