How to enjoy your next vacation in a luxury villa!
VRMA's Discover Vacation Homes suggests that you discover the "villa life"
February 08, 2010
Whether trying vacation rentals for the first time or if you're one of the nearly nine in 10 travelers who plan to rent again,* McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas and vacation rental expert, President and licensed Broker Nancy Anderson, offers the following planning tips and insights as a post-game update for visiting the U.S. and British Virgin Islands or Grenada:
- KNOW YOUR DESTINATION: Whether you are a first-time traveler to the Caribbean or not, it's recommended that you become familiar with the islands' special events, seasons and offerings. Here are some activities that guests find most enjoyable:
- LOOK FOR PACKAGES: During certain seasons, vacation rental packages can provide even more value, with all of the typical amenities of a home-away-from-home! For example, McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas' Free Nights in Paradise Promotion offers 7 nights for the price of 6 at the majority of listed villas on 6 Caribbean islands. Visit www.mclaughlinanderson.com for the most current information on special offers and villa rental deals by owners.
- AVOID AIRLINE BAGGAGE FEES: Most Caribbean vacation rentals come equipped with washers and dryers, and many island managers also provide free laundry detergent and bath amenities. Travelers may choose to use these perks to pack less clothing and toiletries, avoiding commercial airlines' baggage fees and restrictions.
- USE SPACE TO YOUR ADVANTAGE: Caribbean vacation villas can be from 3,500 to 10,000 sq. ft. or more, often costing less than a single hotel room by sleeping up to 20+ guests versus just a few guests.
- SAVE ON DINING OUT: With full kitchens and outdoor grills, Caribbean vacation rental travelers often make and store meals and snacks for less, including football favorites like homemade nachos during postseason trips. Use local ingredients and recipes for more memorable mealtimes, like boiled (poached) or fried "ol' wife" fish with peas and rice on the side. This also provides healthy travel options, cutting the amount of calories typically consumed while on vacation.
- ASK ABOUT AFTER-HOURS SERVICE: When looking into any vacation rental accommodations, check to see if there is an accessible customer service number for emergency needs 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and for after-hour requests. While the majority of McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas do not feature staff, after-hours contacts are available in case of any unexpected situation when their offices are closed. At The Ritz-Carlton Club® on St. Thomas, there is 24-hour Concierge service.
- ENTERTAIN FOR FREE: While villas are located in quiet, residential areas for privacy, most of McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas' vacation homes, estates and villa rentals include amenities not found in hotels, such as private pools, cable or satellite TV, DVD players, broadband and/or Wi-Fi, and completely-equipped gourmet kitchens. Many are also in areas within a short drive to white sand beaches, restaurants and nightlife. There are also hiking trails, fitness centers, national parks, and amusement areas such as St. Thomas' Coral World Marine Park.
- ASK ABOUT PARTNERSHIPS: Beyond the ability to live like a local in the islands, vacation rental guests can also take advantage of McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas' relationships with activity providers, shops, restaurants, tour companies and more. They are often first to hear of special events and offers and are happy to share them with you. Guests can also opt for concierge-type services, including grocery delivery, personal chefs, in-home massages and spa treatments, etc.
- REMEMBER BIG EVENTS: The annual Paradise Jam takes place on St. Thomas each November, plus a variety of large venues such as The Reichhold Center for the Performing Arts on St. Thomas and Island Center on St. Croix host world-class entertainers, including symphony orchestras, dance troupes and international celebrity performers. Find information on activities and services on each island's page on the McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas web site (top menu).
- TRANSPORTATION: Other relationships to remember are those made between vacation rental managers and transportation providers, whether it's rental cars, shuttle services, private boat ferries, private drivers, limousines or more. McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas can also assist you with coordinating your inter-island activities or if your airport arrival island is not your final destination island. They'll help you to have a smooth, stress-free arrival!
For general answers to frequently asked questions about vacation rentals or for more information, visit www.DiscoverVacationHomes.com as an official category resource. Also connect with travelers and experts in the Facebook vacation rental community at www.facebook.com/DiscoverVacationHomes, and join the conversation on Twitter @GoVacationHomes.
ABOUT MCLAUGHLIN ANDERSON LUXURY VILLAS
McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas is the recognized authority for exclusive vacation rental homes in the U.S. Virgin Islands, British Virgin Islands and Grenada. Led by founder Nancy Anderson with a sterling 25-year reputation, we offer only the finest of private luxury rental properties on 7 islands. Offerings include The Ritz-Carlton Club® Residences and Suites on St. Thomas. Based on St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Proud members of USVI Hotel and Tourism Association, St. Thomas-St. John Chamber of Commerce, TAG, CHTA, CTA, VRMA, and IGLTA.
*PhoCusWright's Vacation Rental Marketplace: Poised for Change
McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Villas
1-800-537-6246 or 1-340-776-0635 direct/international