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4 Club Med Questions...

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Boston, MA
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4 Club Med Questions...

We just got back from the Alexandra and there were no non-motorized water sports (although they are advertised as being included... everywhere). There was one kayak with a missing back and no paddle and it cost $20 a day to rent just fins from Caicos Dream Tours.

So we're thinking about switching to Club Med for our next trip, but we went there when we were stranded to see if we could book a room for a few nights and the place was hot and it seemed like most things were open-air... the questions:

1) Are there bars or lounges that are air conditioned? If I am out in the hot sun all day, I like a little evening AC action.

2) I saw a pool table in open-air lobby area... any table in an air conditioned location? Anything to do at night besides eat and drink?

3) A big draw would be the Hobies, Kayaks, Snorkeling trips... is there a sign-up sheet? Is it difficult to get these items? Are the snorkel trips off the Club Med boat included? I heard some of the excursion add-ons are pricey.

4) I hate bugs... I know the rooms are old and need renovating, but as long as they are cool and bug free, I should be good to go... what do you think? Worth it or not worth it? Beaches is our second choice, but we are not bringing kids and it costs twice as much.

Thanks everyone!

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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1. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

1) all bars and such are open-air. The the two restaurants are enclosed and air-conditioned. (Up until a year or two ago the AC in the main restaurant was border-line, but they seem to have improved it lately.)

2) There are a couple of pool tables and ping-pong tables, but all are in the open-air area. It is shaded and there is usually a decent breeze coming through, but no AC.

3) If the village is busy/full there will sometimes be a waiting list for the Hobies, but you don't have to sign up hours in advance (or previous day) as some places we've visited. I've never see a wait for the kayaks. Snorkeling trips have a limit of about 30 people, so first-come, first served. Unless the village is full this is not a problem. When we visit (Sept/Oct) there are typically about 10 people on a snorkel trip. Snorkel trips are included, including equipment. (SCUBA diving is extra cost, but somewhat less than going to local outfitters.) Excursions can be a bit pricey. If you know your way around a little you could probably book them directly and save a few $$. All excursions are provided through local companies (Big Blue, etc.) and I'm sure Club Med adds in a "little something" for their "overhead".

4) Biggest bug problem in the rooms is that some people insist on bringing food back to their rooms, attracting small ants and possibly other bugs. These will stay around a couple of days after the offending guests have left and you have moved in. We have found that rooms on the 2nd or 3rd floors seem to have fewer bugs and are drier (less chance of mold) but no elevators.

Is it worth it? Depends on what you want. We go for the better sports/sailing equipment (quantity and quality) and the friendly atmosphere of Club Med. We consider the food to be good, but it depends on your tastes: it is more a European style food so if you are looking for juicy steaks and such, you'll be disappointed. For example, the best beef is usually the once-a-week Beef Wellington and it is really good. For pricing, you should get the Club Med (no air) for $2000 - 2500 for 2 people during high season, a little less during off-season. We're hearing that there will be a major renovation next year (2012) and expect a moderate price increase after that.

Club Med is a little different from most resorts. Read the "First time GM Guide" at the top of the page at www.hammocktree.us/ms/trips.html for a more complete description.

Boston, MA
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2. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

Hi AGo, Thanks for all the info.

I followed the link, but am still not clear.

If the room AC is not working, is there anywhere to sit with a book and lounge that is air-conditioned?

I understand the restaurant may have AC, but it certainly wouldn't be comfortable to hang there.

Thanks!

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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3. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

The only "accessible" places (other than restaurants) that I can think of that are AC'ed are the exercise room and the boutique. Neither of these really have a place to relax and both have signs "no food or drink".

We've never had a problem with our room AC. It won't keep the room ice-cold, but probably around 73 - 74 F would be typical. If you do have an AC problem, then they should either fix or or move you to a room where it is working properly.

We may have a little different view of heat/humidity since we grew up in Florida, but I don't think we've ever felt the need to retreat to AC to get out of the heat. We do seek out lounges in the shade and might cool off occasionally in the pool or the ocean. There is generally a light breeze to help cool you

Illinois City...
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for Palm - Eagle Beach
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4. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

Is there some kind of a link to see what the boutique sells? I keep reading about the boutique. Please tell me what services are there.

Marietta, Georgia
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5. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

Mostly clothing, including t-shirts, swim suits/cover-ups, hats/caps, and general resort wear. As to be expected, on the expensive side, although they do generally have some specials. They also have necessities such as sunblock, insect repellent, and even a little liquor like rum. Also some trinkets and souvenir items. I recommend bringing your own supply of sunblock and insect repellent both because of the cost and because they have a very limited selection and supply. One year when they had gotten a lot of rain recently and the insects were bad, they ran out of repellent.

Las Vegas, Nevada
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6. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

With the room if you keep your curtains closed when out of the room it will keep it cooler. The room has always been fine for me.

There will be plenty of spots where you can feel the breeze at night. It only gets very very hot when there is no wind.

The AC in the restuarant isn't very good. They don't even keep the fans on all the time. There are 3 dining rooms used in order the middle one is the hottest by far. The 3 rd one is the coolest as it is around the corner and I like to sit under a fan. Some of the friends don't like the fans as it is too cool for them.

The time of year has a lot to do with it too. The summer months June - it is much hotter than the winter months.

For the bed bugs don't bring used beach towels back to the room. I also don't open the windows. I have never had bed bugs after 10 trips. Use bug spray at night on the legs and arms. I might have a few small bights but that is it.

Club Med generally has a great sale in the late summer. This is for trips in the new year. That is where you can get the best price if you book that far in advance they had 777 a person this year for a week. Plus if you use certain travel agents they give you an 8% rebate when you return. For an additional savings.

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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7. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

And some (at least one) travel agent gives 10% rebate....

Super_CFC, don't know if you've been in the past year but it seemed to us that the AC in the main restaurant was working noticeably better on our last visit last Sept. Perhaps it was temporary or something else, but it did seem better then. Previous years it was not comfortable having a hot cup of coffee after dinner and on this last visit having coffee was fine.

Spokane, Washington
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8. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

Speaking of coffee, what types of coffee are available in the mornings? (plain,lattes,mochas,espresso,etc)

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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9. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

In the mornings there are pots of "american style" coffee on the tables. Unfortunately this has typically been sitting for a while and is neither hot nor fresh. We generally just head to a coffee machine that makes relatively good coffee for a machine. You can choose something like regular, dark, espresso, possibly a latte but don't remember for sure. I like a "robust" cup of coffee so I generally get a cup of the dark roast then add a single espresso on top of that. It's not quite Starbucks, but it's not bad...

In the evenings you can get the various coffee drinks at the bar.

Illinois City...
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10. Re: 4 Club Med Questions...

Super_CFC....I don't think you meant to type bed bugs....now that's a scary thought.