Ideas for quiet Caribbean beach vacation?
December 22, 2009 1:37 PM   Subscribe

Where is a good quiet Caribbean beach resort, with good food and service but a minimum of loud people/activities/partying?

Here's what I want from the resort or hotel: walk right out directly onto the beach. Sit down in a beach chair under an umbrella. Order a beer or pina colada (or bring one from the beach bar). Then do nothing all day, enjoying peace and quiet, looking at the water. Then walk back to the resort's restaurant for a good dinner. Bedtime. Next day, same agenda.

I don't want a casino. I don't want nightlife. I don't want organized hula hoop contests on the beach. I don't want rock-climbing or kayaking adventures. I just want a beach, an umbrella, and a beer. And then a nice dinner.

Extra points if this location is a direct flight from New York City.

One place that fits the bill, by the way, is resorts on Grace Bay, within Turks & Caicos. (Providenciales is a direct flight from NYC.) But most of those places are expensive and I'd love to find something that's more affordable.

Any ideas and/or recommendations from past experience?

P.S. I have seen this question about a short Caribbean vacation... which is helpful except that I'm not looking for a lot of outside activities.
posted by mark7570 to Travel & Transportation (10 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
 
To be clear, it's not just that you don't require a casino (etc., etc.) but that you require that there be no casino?
posted by onshi at 1:42 PM on December 22, 2009


Grenada is, I think, the best bargain in the Caribbean. Check out TripAdvisor for hotels; I stayed at the Rex, which was just fine.
posted by Sidhedevil at 1:51 PM on December 22, 2009


I have no particular requirement against a casino, just that that's not the scene I'm looking for... but if there's something otherwise nice and quiet that happens to have a casino, I'd consider it.
posted by mark7570 at 1:55 PM on December 22, 2009


Isla de los Mujeres, near Cancun. I like this place.
posted by jet_silver at 2:21 PM on December 22, 2009


I just went to Tulum, 1.5 hours south of Cancun and it was amazing. You can fly JFK-Cancun on JetBlue.

Wikipedia and WikiTravel.
posted by k8t at 2:28 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


walk right out directly onto the beach. Sit down in a beach chair under an umbrella. Order a beer or pina colada (or bring one from the beach bar). Then do nothing all day, enjoying peace and quiet, looking at the water. Then walk back to the resort's restaurant for a good dinner. Bedtime. Next day, same agenda.


That's exactly what I did during my visit to the Aqua resort in Cancun. It looks huge in the pictures, but even if it's located in a party town like Cancun, there's a whole spa-like feeling to the whole place, starting with the lobby which smells great and has calming instrumental music and the rooms, with really simple but cozy decoration. You can check out the reviews at Tripadvisor.

Another place I've heard good things of is the Grand Velas resort in the Mayan Riviera. Again, maybe too close to Cancun for your comfort, but the good thing about resorts in the Mayan Riviera is that they're on a big stretch of beach with nothing close to them, so you can spend all your time peacefully inside the resort without any need to go out at night. You can see here what I'm talking about.

You're probably thinking of something else when looking for a Caribbean location, but I'm thinking Cancun is probably the cheapest place to fly to and it has some great quiet resorts.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 3:08 PM on December 22, 2009


Was also going to recommend Grenada, specifically this place, but holy fuck has it gotten expensive since I was there.
posted by minimii at 3:16 PM on December 22, 2009


Look at some of the all-adult resorts in the Dominican Republic. I went to the Paradisus Punta Cana for my wedding, and although it was not adult only, I found it to be quiet (although it was in the off-season). There *were* things to do if you got bored, like a little band playing in the lobby bar in the evenings with some dancing, some water activities available, and I think they had water aerobics in the pool once a day, but it was certainly nothing like a cruise where there are millions of activities going on all the time. There were also a large number of restaurants (12 I think?) of which at least half were upper-to-fine-dining at night. The beach was also expansive and stunning, with a small beach bar in easy walking distance from the numerous and comfortable beach beds.

Stay away from places like Sandals and Beaches like the plague. We went to Sandals in Negril for our honeymoon, and while it was nice, we were constantly being bugged about joining in something, and all the bars/restaurants were packed and noisy. We had fun, but if you are looking for quiet, these resorts aren't it.
posted by tryniti at 3:19 PM on December 22, 2009


Are you people going to make me retype this in every single Caribbean vacation thread?! :)

Grand Case Beach Club, at the east end of the French side of St. Martin, is what you want. Not expensive, JetBlue flies right to St. Martin from JFK and you can take a cab from the airport. The club has its own beach with chaise-longues and little flags you put up to have the staff come bring you piña coladas — it's more popular with European couples than with American families, so there aren't generally kids running around. Here's my map of stuff to do in the area, but there's really no need to leave the club — it's seriously relaxing.

And the food in town is the best in the Caribbean.
posted by nicwolff at 3:20 PM on December 22, 2009 [8 favorites]


2nd the Paradisus Punta Cana in the DR. Their newer resort, the Paridisus Palma Real, is also in Punta Cana and seems to be designed around the idea of being left alone.
posted by paxton at 9:59 AM on December 23, 2009


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