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1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Stamford...
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1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Going to GC in July with wife and 14 year old daughter. Daughter likes hotels but I and wife prefer a little more solitude. I am looking at SMB and I think a condo rental may be in order. It must have:

1. pool

2. beachfront access

3. not too many units thus a little quieter

4. wifi ( I think most do from what I've seen)

5. Nice beach area with calm water as both wife and kid prefer calm swimming over anything else.

6. Price should be reasonable nothing over $500/nt plz

Nice to have:

parking ( I always rent cars on the islands but I think GC has decent public transport so not 100% sure on renting this time around ).

Any recommendations?

Thx

Grand Cayman
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1. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Start looking at cicondos.com, caymanvacation.com and caymanvacations.com. The central area has at the widest sandiest beach, the northern end is quieter. You can get away without a car in the southern/central areas as there is more in walking distance in terms of shops and restaurants. The whole of SMB is actually 5 /1 2miles long. Hope this gives you a starting point.

Rhode Island
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2. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

SMB condos offer what it sounds like would work well for all of you. Newer ones with more amenities, such as oceanfront pools, will be priced higher than others, but during your timeframe you get a big bang for the buck. For example, Beachcomber 2 bedroom unit smack in the middle of central SMB is close walk to Ritz and Westin, shopping, restaurants, etc. Cost per night is mid $500 and has everything on your wish list. Have not stayed there (yet) but did tour when first opened....units are spacious, beautifully appointed, underground parking, beach area the best, pool lovely; quiet, peaceful yet not at all isolated. Same applies to Merdian which is next to Beachcomber....have stayed there many times in a 3 bedroom unit. Beachsuites is more than a hotel room, but less than a full condo. One bedroom units with kitchenette (microwave, under cabinet refrigerator) and pull out sleepers in the living/dining/kitchenette area. Might be worth considering.

Telluride, Colorado
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3. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Try Seven Mile Beach Resort. Short path to the water. Quiet and great location. http://www.7mile.ky/reservation.html . I've been staying there about 15 years. Best prices, nice 2 bedroom units, pool, hot tub and grills.

chicago suburbs
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4. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

The condos on northern SMB are less expensive than in the central area, most have pools..some of the older ones may not have washers and dryers in the unit. You would need a car if you stayed . No charge for parking at these complexes.

Dallas, Texas
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5. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Also take a look at the Coral Stone Club, located at central SMB next door to the Ritz. All 3 bedroom oceanfront condos, but they do offer 2 bedroom rates ($450/night) for some of their units (on the 2nd floor). Stayed there last November and really liked the location, convenient to many restaurants, the Ritz/Westin, watersport rentals, etc. but still enjoyed the privacy of being in a nice condo. Great pool and of course being at the central portion of SMB, you get a great beach.

Another condo complex we visited (and consequently booked for our next stay) is Plantana. Mostly 2 bedroom units, beautiful grounds and great beachfront as well. Plantana is located a little more north than Coral Stone Club and that area seemed a bit more quiet/private. However, it's still in a good location IMO, close by the Westin and Governor's Beach (for some offshore snorkeling). Their 2-bedroom rates are $475/night (or less) and they should be offering some type Summer Splash special for your time frame.

Good luck in your search! There appears to be many good choices for you. :-)

Annapolis, Maryland
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6. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Do you prefer to in a very developed area or a more remote location? With the exception of the northern end, Seven Mile Beach is widely developed and commercialized. This suits some, but others are looking for a more tropical feel in their location and not be acoss the street from a Chinese restaurant or Wendy's. Some also prefer to avoid areas of construction or congestion. Do some research, first decide which locale suits your preferences, then select a property or two that interest you and ask about it. Alternatives to Seven Mile Beach condos are found at the Reef Resort in East End and along the North Side / Rum Point areas, for example. You will need to rent a car for these areas but the roads there are quiet and less traveled. No matter where you stay, I would not recommend that you rely solely on public transportation. Rent a car : )

Edited: 21 February 2013, 21:30
Stamford...
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7. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

We prefer quiet. We would rather not be right next to crowds. Since I am most definitely going to rent a car distance is not an issue. BUT, I would love to walk out of my condo and walk right into the water so beach quality is quite important.

Grand Cayman
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8. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Since you are coming in the summer, all of Seven Mile Beach will be pretty quiet. East End will be more secluded but I much prefer the beach along Seven Mile and you won't encounter crowds either. I would expect that your daughter would enjoy Seven Mile more as well since you can easily walk to shops and restaurants. Depending on your price range, you should be able to get some pretty good deals that time of year. Condo complexes such as Tamarind Bay, Regal Beach, Cayman Reef would be more reasonably priced than Meridian and Beachcomber. You will love Seven Mile Beach. Be prepared for some stunning sunsets!

Stamford...
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9. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

Follow up question: Which restaurant makes the best seafood soup or stew on the island?

Grand Cayman
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10. Re: 1st timer to GC but have been to a lot of Caribbean Islands

No "Best" in any category!!!! Everyone has different tastes. Must admit that I see more conch dishes on menus than fish stews or soups and probably most devotees will tell you that homemade conch chowder is the "Best". I am sure people will tell you their favorites, but eveyone's taste buds and expectations are slightly different. You could check out restaurants and menus at caymangoodtaste.com and caymanrestaurantguide.com and see which places with such offerings seem the most appealing to you. You could even try multiple places and then give us a true baseline based on a timely comparison of the pros and cons of each. One day I hope to do that with all the dive ops (I probably still won't be able to pick out a "best", but I will get lots and lots of dives in and meet tons of great people).