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Questions about St. Kitts Beachclub

nanceetom

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We decided to try something different than Aruba or St. Thomas this January, so we're staying 8 days at the St. Kitts Beach Club and 6 at the hotel. In planning for our January stay, we have a lot of questions. We usually rent a car, however, reading some reviews, it seems for the $60 per day (including taxes and insurance) the roads and the left side driving, could be difficult. We're having difficulty finding current taxi rates. We would probably go out each evening for dinner and maybe see a few different beaches and sights.
Anyone have experience with taxi rates, must do things to see and restaurants.
 

BobG7734

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You are correct, a rental car is not really needed on SKB. Taxis are plentiful, courteous and not expensive (last time we were there in March). Taxis are good for day tours...befriending a driver early on is the way to go...they will be at your call and either wait at a restaurant or give you their cell to call. Many excellent restaurants...check out Trip Advisor for the latest reviews (favorites are Rock Lobster(walkable from Marriott), Serendipity, Marshalls).

SKB is more laid back than Aruba and STT..but good golf, beaches and other activities.
 

Fairwinds

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We went to St. Kitts last year for a change. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Expense is one thing that I can't deny and not driving has an appeal to me too, but I always end up driving anyway. If for some reason you should change your mind I found driving on St. Kitts easier than on St. Thomas. Rules are similar but it seemed like a lot less traffic to deal with and I actually think the roads are generally wider and better quality (although in some of the more rural areas pot holes are hard to see at night,,, ouch)

We spent most of our time on various beaches and golfing but two highlites were a hike up to the top of a volcano (Mount Liamuiga) and brunch at the Kittitian Hills restaurant. Because of distance and time required these two activities might be better with a car. There are tours for the hike up the mountain if you don't rent a car and don't mind tours.

If I remember correctly there is a car rental agency (Hertz???) at the Marriott hotel should you want a short term rental
 
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bazzap

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Yes, you are right it is a Hertz agency on site.
It is not the cheapest option, but certainly convenient.
As you say, the roads are generally fairly quiet and mostly in fair condition although the stretch heading over Timothy Hill and down to the southern peninsula can be subject to rock falls and pot holes.
A great island to visit though, I just hope planned developments don't over commercialise the place like many other Caribbean islands - so far, so good.
 

DB-Wis

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We went to St. Kitts a couple of years ago and we got along fine without a rental car -- and I'm someone who virtually always gets a car. It's easy and relatively inexpensive to use a taxi. Based on the road system I observed while there, I would be reluctant to get a rental car.
 

Fairwinds

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Yes, you are right it is a Hertz agency on site.
It is not the cheapest option, but certainly convenient.
As you say, the roads are generally fairly quiet and mostly in fair condition although the stretch heading over Timothy Hill and down to the southern peninsula can be subject to rock falls and pot holes.
A great island to visit though, I just hope planned developments don't over commercialise the place like many other Caribbean islands - so far, so good.

I also hope they can find a way to develop the tourist economy without spoiling the feel of the island. It was a big part of what we liked so much about it. Assuming that Timothy hill is the one just outside the resort they were building a tunnel through the top of the hill when we were there so hopefully that issue will pass. Incidentally, one morning while out for a run I decided it would be a good idea to run over the hill to a beach entrance on the other side and back. One more example of poor decision making. But on the bright side there are no MVC timeshares in Tibet
 
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bazzap

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I also hope they can find a way to develop the tourist economy without spoiling the feel of the island. It was a big part of what we liked so much about it. Assuming that Timothy hill is the one just outside the resort they were building a tunnel through the top of the hill when we were there so hopefully that issue will pass. Incidentally, one morning while out for a run I decided it would be a good idea to run over the hill to a beach entrance on the other side and back. One more example of poor decision making. But on the bright side there are no MVC timeshares in Tibet
I am seriously impressed. Yes Timothy hill is the one just south of the resort and we did walk up it to the viewpoint once, but running in that heat / humidity I don't think so!
I wouldn't hold my breath on completion of the tunnel, as everything here is on island time and very slooow.
All the new developments at Kittitian Hill, Christophe Harbour and to an extent Park Hyatt... do seem to be fairly well planned, low rise, spread out and if I understand correctly using at least some local manpower and providing funding into the local economy so that is encouraging.
 

KathyPet

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We own at SKBC and have been several times. The island is very badly in need of economic development. I have been to many of the Carribean islands and St. kItts is certainly one of the worst off. iNcreased development and tourist travel may encourage airlines to schedule more flights since flights are very limited. Maybe they can think about replacing that horrible airport. I have never rented a car during our stays feeling that the taxis are reasonably priced and that I am pumping money into the local economy rather than giving it to the Hertz Corp.
 

Quilter

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We stayed on St. Kitts when they were just building the shopping district for the cruise ship port. The island had recently changed it's focus on sugar cane production to tourism. The population was feel the effects of having lost jobs without new opportunities yet in place. Let's hope that everybody and his cousin doesn't decide to become a taxi driver because from what we experienced, too many ships in port and too many taxis are the bane of St. Thomas.

We rented a car one day on St. Kitts. We went grocery shopping, toured the island (very easy), went to church and lunch. That was all we needed to see the island. Used taxis for other rides to restaurants.

Has anyone visited Bell Mont Farm? http://www.bellemontfarm.com/farm/
IMO St. Thomas could definitely use several of these and less taxis. Then there would be decent fresh produce available without bringing everything in by boat which is the craziest thing considering the amount of interior land and growing season.
 

bazzap

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We stayed on St. Kitts when they were just building the shopping district for the cruise ship port. The island had recently changed it's focus on sugar cane production to tourism. The population was feel the effects of having lost jobs without new opportunities yet in place. Let's hope that everybody and his cousin doesn't decide to become a taxi driver because from what we experienced, too many ships in port and too many taxis are the bane of St. Thomas.

We rented a car one day on St. Kitts. We went grocery shopping, toured the island (very easy), went to church and lunch. That was all we needed to see the island. Used taxis for other rides to restaurants.

Has anyone visited Bell Mont Farm? http://www.bellemontfarm.com/farm/
IMO St. Thomas could definitely use several of these and less taxis. Then there would be decent fresh produce available without bringing everything in by boat which is the craziest thing considering the amount of interior land and growing season.
I totally agree about the impact of the cruise ships on these small islands.
When staying at Frenchman's Cove there were up to 30,000 passengers coming on shore on one peak day, a total nightmare.
In St Kitts, it was always far more low key. In recent years though, numbers have risen significantly in peak periods.
When visiting now, we always check the cruise ship schedule and plan our island trips on days when there are no more than one ship in port.
 

Old Hickory

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You are correct, a rental car is not really needed on SKB. Taxis are plentiful, courteous and not expensive (last time we were there in March). Taxis are good for day tours...befriending a driver early on is the way to go...they will be at your call and either wait at a restaurant or give you their cell to call. Many excellent restaurants...check out Trip Advisor for the latest reviews (favorites are Rock Lobster(walkable from Marriott), Serendipity, Marshalls).

SKB is more laid back than Aruba and STT..but good golf, beaches and other activities.

This. We went to St. Kitts last March and this was our experience, as well. Also, the doormen were very good to help us with taxis and tours.

The excellent restaurants are beach shacks serving authentic Caribbean meals of local BBQ pork, lobster, and fish. One is Sprat Net which requires a taxi.
 

Helios

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I am thinking about buying a Marriott unit, prime season, in the Caribean. I own at Ko Olina now. Can any of the owners at St Kitts post your thoughts on owning at this property?

I think I would probably go every 5 years and rent the remaining years. Looking at rentals and MFs, it seems like I could break even at best. Assuming I have a renter for the years I don't use the unit.
 

bazzap

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I am thinking about buying a Marriott unit, prime season, in the Caribean. I own at Ko Olina now. Can any of the owners at St Kitts post your thoughts on owning at this property?

I think I would probably go every 5 years and rent the remaining years. Looking at rentals and MFs, it seems like I could break even at best. Assuming I have a renter for the years I don't use the unit.
We own a couple of weeks in St Kitts and really like the friendly, relaxed nature of the place.
Owning in Ko Olina, you may find it very quiet and undeveloped.
You will also be used to high MFs, but for us they are much higher than for all our other MVC resorts and with a relatively poor return on DC Points where eligible for enrolment.
My question would be why buy there if you only plan to visit every 5 years or so, why not just exchange in and/or rent when you want to visit?
 
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