St. James Travel Guide
[Ed. Note: Welcome to our Good Rate/Bad Rate feature where we look at hotel prices in the same destination and decide which one most deserves your hard-earned benjamins. Rates quotes here were captured August 7, 2007 and are subject to change. Enjoy.]
It always gets our attention when we see a Ritz-Carlton resort offering rooms at a bargain price and this Jamaica deal is worth getting excited about.
Stay between now and November 20 and get a room at the Ritz-Carlton Rose Hall for $199 to $249 a night. The lowest $199 rate is for a "garden view" room, so you'll have to take it up a notch to $249 to see the water. (Or just hang out at the water all day instead.)
You can expect the full Ritz rundown in the large 44.5 square meters/480 square feet rooms: CD player. marble bathroom with separate tub and shower, twin-sink vanity, and nice bathrobes.
We were able to plug in all kinds of dates and get this deal, both on Expedia and the hotel's own site, but there are blackouts on Aug. 9, 10, Oct. 23-28, and Nov. 4-9.
And if you have a new passport, you get another bonus. Here's what we found on the Expedia page: "Book a three or five-night minimum stay now - December 10, 2007 and receive either a US$100 or US$200 resort credit when you show your 2007 issued passport at check-in." (The $200 one is if staying five nights or more.)
Maybe that will make up for the 13 percent gouging charge, er...we mean "resort fee," you'll also have to cough up.
Also we gotta lay down our standard caveat here too - there's the usual Caribbean hurricane risk this time of year so get trip cancellation insurance.
· Bad Rate :: 'Deferred Maintenance' at the Beachcomber in Negril [HotelChatter]
By now we all know that Tiger Woods and his Swedish bride, Elin Nordegren, were married in Barbados on Tuesday, however, it is HotelChatter's job to try and fill you in a bit on the Barbadian resort that they were married at.
The wedding, which took place at the 5 star Sandy Lane Resort on the gold coast of Barbados, reportedly cost Tiger ~$1.5 MM. That translates to more Barbadian dollars than we can count. So what did Mr. Woods spend all his money on? For starters, he booked the entire resort, all 150 or so rooms at somewhere between $700 and $8000 a night depending on the room. That is well over half a mil right there. Then Woods paid off the local helipad operators so US Weekly would leave him alone. Scanning the Woods/Nordegren invoice that is floating around the press outlets for the cheapest item on the list, and we are guessing the services of Hootie and the Blowfish can't be more than $10,000 at this point. C'mon Tiger, a lavish affair to the tune of "I only want to be with you"?
Well Tiger, looks like dolphins do make you cry.
The Sandy Lane is owned by Irishmen J.P. McManus and Dermot Desmond, who reportedly are friends of Woods.
A couple years back, during a rebuild, we gawked around the Sandy Lane in person, and it is definitely an ideal romantic setting. Sandy Lane usually doesn't disappoint guests, even with their high prices, and that is saying something, as Sandy Lane is one of, if not the most expensive stay, on Barbados.
This resort has it all. Golf, beautiful beach, pool, and the resort is known to offer guests rides to and from the airport in a Bentley. What are the drawbacks? Well if you don't like kids, and you can't rent the whole resort, you may want to think twice about staying here. Families do vacation here, often, and that is cool, but if you are dropping a grand a night for total peace and quiet you may not want kids around.
· Tiger marries Swedish fiancee at Barbados resort [SFGate]