The Residences 2 by Grace Bay Resorts: Turks and Caicos

I stumbled on this villa the other day and it caught my attention for obvious reasons.

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The Residences 2 gated beachfront luxury property is part of the Grace Bay Resorts, on island of Turks and Caicos. The decor and build of this villa has all the requirements and more!

With your stay you get access toa  personal concierge service a library! Now I love places that come with everything so I don’t have to leave, but this place makes me not want to book a return ticket!

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Open plan design and decor have me feeling relaxed from behind my computer. The greens and turquoise colours with white tones make the ocean views more spectacular. The furniture is just inviting and I love high vaulted ceilings. The kitchen and living spaces fit in the open plan and make relaxing and spending time effortless. Plus you get daily breakfast 🙂

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The five bedrooms at The Residences 2 can accommodate up to twelve people, TWELVE, seriously why havent you booked this place yet? with one of the bedrooms situated in its own cottage. The two master bedrooms open up to more ocean views that you can enjoy from the terraces. Every bedroom come with en-suite bathrooms.

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Seriously…..

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Book this place…

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I can see why this place was awarded TripAdvisor’s Travelers Choice award in 2015 for top quality…..

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The Residence 2 is not short of activities.Let me just list the amenities available with this place:

  • Complete fitness center
  •  Infinity swimming pool (heated by the way)
  • Outdoor hot tub and palapa
  • Outdoor showers.
  • Spacious deck with alfresco dining.
  • Housekeeping,a babysitter
  • Activities, spa services
  • Chef (that can be arranged)

It also comes with a unique scooter tour to see the island, and kite surfing, snorkeling, nature habitat tours, scuba diving and access to the nearby eighteen-hole course Provo Golf Club can be arranged with no issue.

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This is by the far the most luxurious place I think ive posted. And its amazing. Because it’s in a gated micro resort, there are additional amenities like kid activities, shuttle services,complimentary start-up bar (rum, vodka, mixers, wine and beer) and pre-stocked kitchen….I love the word complementary…..

if you havent already booked this place you can do so here.

 

 

 

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Images and information courtesy of Luxury Retreats.

Manoir de Lorient, St. Barts

This luxury home is situated in one of the most well-known Islands in the Caribbean. St. Bart’s. St. Barts is a french territory located in the Lesser Antilles and a part of the Leeward Islands. It’s known for attracting the rich and famous for the winter and new year seasons.

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Manoir de Lorient gets it’s namesake from its location on Lorient Hill. Of course I have a thing for good architectural layout and this place just speaks to me. Each of the five rooms are divided into bungalows  which all open up to the courtyard.this place has high ceilings and lots of wood finishings which I adore. st-barts-manoirdelorient-13  It has a centrepiece swimming pool and a fully stocked kitchen (super important) and a heated jacuzzi. Up to ten people can stay comfortably in the rooms which all come with queen size beds and the master bedroom has an en suite bath and a king sized bed.

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I love the design and decor of Manoir de Lorient. The minimalist decor I believe is best to highlight the natural beauty around.

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The pool at night is wonderfully lit. can you imagine sitting outside looking at this view?

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I think this is one of my favourite places that I have posted so far. It has all of my requirements plus everything else that you would need to enjoy a private, relaxing vaction. Check their page to book your stay.

 

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Just fantastic….

 

 

 

 

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Images and information couresty of Luxury Retreats

 

 

Spotlight: Old Havana

 

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Cuba has been getting a lot of air time recently since President Obama opened up diplomatic relations after 50 years. Cuba is my country’s closet neighbour and our relations have always been amicable. We help with food and aid while they train our doctors, send their workers for hospitality training. They have also built some of our schools. This advantageous relationship goes back to our former leaders Fidel Castro and Micheal Manley, and their close relationship as former classmates in university.

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Old Havana and its Fortification System

Now for the real reason of this post, highlighting the frozen architecture and feel of Havana. The capital city was founded in 1519 by the Spanish. It became the main ship building port for the Caribbean in the 17th century.

The city has five plazas each with their own unique style. The Spanish had set procedures for how a city must be built. These plans dictated that construction should follow a grid centered on the square shape of a plaza. Havana’s first plaza was Plaza de Armas.

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Plaza de Armas

Many important buildings surrounded the plaza and it was designated the area of refugee in case of an attack and arms would be distributed.

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Old Havana and its Fortification System

 

The Fortifications were built-in the 16th and 19th century to protect the city  due to its importance as a necessary stop route onto the new world. These structures are some of the oldest in the Americas. The layout and architecture remain unchanged but have been susceptible to natural damage and neglect.

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Old Havana and its Fortification System

 

Efforts are now underway to preserve old Havana from further decay. a detailed plan of the revitalization can be found here (its in spanish) Old Havana was named a world heritage site by UNESCO in 1982.There are four forts protecting the city all of which now operate as museums.

Castillo del Morro

Castillo de la Punta

Fortaleza de San Carlos de la Cabana

Castillo de la Real Fuerza

 

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Castillo del Morro

 

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Great theater of Havana

The city has hundreds of little alleyways to wonder and explore, cafe’s and squares to pass the day. With relaxed travel options nows the time to visit La Habana Vieja!

 

 

 

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Images and information couretsy of:
Unesco
New World Encyclopedia
Images on Unesco:
M & G Therin-Weise
Ron Van Oers
Vincent Ko Hon Chiu
Image from New World Encyclopedia:
Robert Irwin

 

Spotlight: Chattel Houses

Growing up in the Caribbean these houses were a common sight, but I never knew the history behind themDSC_0350-1024x680

Chattel houses, which is a Bajan term for these houses, were built for ease of transport. where ever the former slaves could find work they would simply pick up and move….literally, the houses were built without nails and could be disassembled easily. They were placed on bricks (which also went along when they moved)

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Chattel house in Falmouth Jamaica

They are less common now as the houses do not stand up well in hurricane season. In Jamaica the rural communities have more chattel houses than in the urbanised areas but many are derelict. DSC_0362-1024x680

Today  people have added on additional rooms (and they are anchored with nails now of course)

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What it would have looked like

 

Personally I think Barbados has some of the most unusual and beautiful ones!

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Many have been repurposed into shops

 

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Former house turned barber shop

 

 

I would love to see the reemergence of these houses as they bring a quaint charm to any community especially if they are painted in vibrant colors

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To see and learn more about chattel houses please visit Chattel House website! they are on a mission to preserve these houses,now this is a movement that I will gladly join.

 

 

 

 

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images courtesy of Island Villas and Inside Journey and Jess Weikel on Pinterest