'Beautiful by nature' is the motto of those representing the Turks and Caicos Islands -- a reputation stemming from the crystalline turquoise waters, white sand beaches, world-class spas, paradise dining menus, cultural traditions, shopping, outdoor adventures and 40-plus islands or cays admired there.
Each island and cay in the archipelago is a destination on its own, says Marcie Boyle, owner of RSVP Events & Travel and Travel Leaders Chesterfield, noting that Travel + Leisure voted the destination one of the best 50 places to travel.
The region consists of the larger Caicos Islands and smaller Turks Islands, two groups of tropical islands in the Lucayan Archipelago of the Atlantic Ocean and northern West Indies.
"The first time I flew in [into TCI], the colors of the ocean simply took my breath away. Turquoise that you’ve never seen before," recalls Marcie. "Pictures simply don’t do it justice. The white sand, the crystal clear water for miles, is simply stunning. It quickly became my favorite island, and after several returns, I continue to feel that way."
Making the island even more unique and organic is that it's virtually untapped by retail chains. Marcie says all TCI hotels were individually owned until the arrival of The Ritz this year. The restaurants and bars are owned by locals, she adds.
"Everyone has a recommendation about where to go, and no one ever steers you wrong. Just ask your cab driver, bellman or concierge, and they will send you to some of the best of the best," she says.
People who go to Turks and Caicos looking for all-inclusive packages do themselves a disservice, Marcie believes. She says the community's food and hospitality locations are worth every penny.
Marcie definitely recommends staying at the luxury oceanfront resort West Bay Club at which guests envelop themselves in beachside serenity and contemporary Caribbean style. It's known for providing a relaxed, laid-back boutique setting for family vacations, personal getaways or couples seeking some peace and quiet. A full-service spa, as well as a picturesque infinity pool ringed by loungers and palm trees, awaits visitors.
West Bay Club also offers sunning, sailing and snorkeling along an uncrowded strip of Grace Bay Beach.
Guests state the resort’s 46 studios and suites strike an effortless balance between homey and elegant.
TCI is a British overseas territory with Providenciales (known as Provo locally) as an island in the northwest Caicos Islands. Marcie really enjoys Provo's Grace Bay and Long Bay area.
Marcie says Provo is an amazing spot for destination weddings. Because she's planned some there, she's happy to help with details. She says it's also a wonderful honeymoon spot. "Some stay at a popular resort and then do a few nights in a more remote location like Amanyara or Parrot Caye," she explains.
For families, Marcie and her team have an inventory of villas they recommend -- many are available with butlers and chefs, if requested. She says several of the resorts have larger suite options for families needing two, three or more bedrooms.
"Provo is a highly sought-after destination – give yourself time to plan for this trip, so we can find the perfect hotel fit for activities, personalities, style, pace and budget," says Marcie, who has visited most of the resorts there and can provide detailed answers to questions.
She's even booked incentive trips there for clients who desire to wow their sales team with President’s Club trips.
West Bay Club's sister property is Grace Bay Club, and ranks highly among Marcie's recommendations. From hotel rooms, villas and four- or five-bedroom residences, there's a style for every family size. This resort is known for its service and attention to detail. Marcie says she has clients who go back there year after year and ask if they can get their same butler or even their same room. "Their dining options are simply amazing – from Just Tacos on the beach to the gorgeous Infinity Restaurant & Bar to the famous Grill," she adds.
Then there's also the Wymara, a TCI resort with a Miami/South Beach vibe. Not only are they one of the leading hotels of the world, they've been Forbes Verified for the steps they're taking to be sure their staff and guests are safe. "This hotel just has such a sexy vibe and it sits on a fabulous beach," shares Marcie. "Sipping rosé on the patio of Zest over lunch is one of my favorite things to do when I visit Turks."
For those looking for remote getaways far from traffic and hectic lifestyles, Marcie says she would recommend Amanyara or Parrot Caye. "Clients who like to get off the grid and truly check out of typical life for a few days, love these locations -- as do honeymooners for either their entire stay or even a few nights," she adds.
There are some TCI activities that Marcie says her team clues clients in on. "Little hints and tricks that not only make a great vacation, but enable them to immerse themselves into the island," she says.
For travel plans, email MBoyle@TravelLeaders.com or call 636.778.1081. By booking with Travel Leaders, clients can receive resort credit from $100 to $300, based on resort and room category, as well as complimentary full breakfast for two, early check in/late check out, and upgrades when available.