Travel Guide, Winter 1995-1996
Margaritas for nothing and the chips for free
In the notoriously high-priced Caribbean, it doesn’t take long to max out a credit card or burn through a wad of traveler’s checks–those $50-per-day equipment rentals and $30-an-hour lessons add up even when you manage to score a reasonably priced hotel room. The solution? An all-inclusive resort. Yes, some of these are too organized, too corny, or too isolated from real
Club Med, the pioneer of the all-inclusive concept, still rules. If you can stand such patented silliness as African Fun Dances and group sing-alongs, Club Med Turkoise (doubles, $125-$190 per person; weekly, $875-$1,135; dive packages, $100 extra; 800-258-2633) on the island of Providenciales is a good deal for divers. The resort comprises 70
LeSPORT (doubles, $210- $345 per person per night; $2,631-$3,500 per couple weekly; 800-544-2883), on the northwestern tip of St. Lucia, attracts stressed-out yuppies and health-conscious hedonists to its Moorish-style “relaxation center” and ocean-view rooms. The price includes instruction in sailing, diving, tennis, and boardsailing, as well as
Families should head for Runaway Bay, midway along Jamaica’s north coast, where the Mediterranean-style Franklin D. Resort ($3,205- $7,205 per couple per week; kids under 16 free; 800-654-1337) caters exclusively to parents and their offspring with one- to three-bedroom suites. Each family gets a “Girl Friday” to cook, clean, and babysit the kids,
Outdoor types sans kids opt for Jamaica Jamaica ($1,120- $1,505 weekly per person; 800-859-7873). Sure, there are goofy costume nights, but if you like parties and sports, this one’s for you. Set on a two-mile north-shore beach, the 22-acre, 238-room resort keeps you busy with horseback rides, bike trips, and a Mistral boardsailing school.
Long before ecotourism came into vogue, scuba divers and nature freaks were coming to Anthony’s Key Resort ($910-$990 per person per week; 800-227-3483) on Roatán in the Bay Islands of Honduras. The attraction is three boat dives per day and unlimited shore diving among pristine coral- and sponge-encrusted walls and reefs. Guests stay in