There are as many timeshare units sprinkled around the Caribbean Sea as there are islands themselves. From Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic all the way west to Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, or all the way south to Barbados and beyond, timeshare resorts are popping up to offer tropical getaways for couples, families, and even large groups. The U.S. Virgin Islands — particularly the islands of St. Thomas and St. John — appear to be among the most up-and-coming timeshare destinations in this region, which makes sense because they are already luring vacationers by the thousands as part of major cruise ship itineraries.
Here is a look at a few Caribbean timeshares that continually receive high rankings from exchange companies and consumer groups alike.
Casa del Mar Beach Resort, Oranjestad, Aruba
All of the units at this Resort Condominiums International property are air conditioned with full kitchens, should you prefer to cook for yourself with supplies from the on-site grocery store instead of grabbing a poolside snack or making reservations at the resort's restaurant. Touring the architecturally renowned city of Oranjestad is a favorite pastime, as of course are water sports such as swimming, water-skiing, boating, and more.
The Casa Del Mar Beach Resort has a child-care facility as well as a children's pool, playground, and game room, making it a good choice for families. Horseback riding and an adults-only casino are within a few miles of the resort.
Indies Suites, Grand Cayman Island
Indies Suites, a Resort Condominiums International Gold Crown property, is across the road from Grand Cayman Island's world-famous Seven Mile Beach. All of the timeshare units are air conditioned, and some have full kitchens. A complimentary continental breakfast and a complimentary sunset cruise are included in the price of your timeshare purchase.
As the island is famous for its five-star underwater scenery, the Indies Suites is an excellent choice for divers and snorkelers who want to enjoy every single minute of “down time” they can.
Red Sail Sports oversees the water sports at Indies Suites, and the company has a fine reputation on Grand Cayman for providing excellent scuba diving instruction and excursions.
Royal Islander Club la Plage, St. Martin
Just a mile from the international airport on St. Martin, the Royal Islander Club la Plage is a Resort Condominiums International Gold Crown resort. All units are air conditioned, and some have full kitchens. The resort boasts the largest freshwater swimming pool on the half-French, half-Dutch island, and it is close to activities including a casino, golf club, horseback riding, and more. A comedy club is on site, as are a restaurant and plenty of beachfront lounge chairs.
The Royal Islander Club la Plage is a large facility, and the staff requires a bit of extra time to perform the day's room cleanings. This time crunch is passed on to you, in the form of early checkout times — no later than 10 A.M. on your day of departure.
Sand Acres Beach Club, Christchurch, Barbados
The Sand Acres Beach club boasts air-conditioned timeshare units, each of which has a full kitchen and a balcony overlooking the crystal-blue Caribbean Sea. The resort is just five miles from Bridgetown, a shopping district where you can find everything from English china to Asian silks and antiques. Nonmotorized water sports are included in the price of your timeshare unit, and for an additional fee you can participate in everything from scuba diving to guided fishing excursions.
Sand Acres Beach Club is just five miles from the Grantley Adams International Airport, and there is a restaurant on site. The nearest golf course and spa are two and three miles away, respectively.
The Royal Sea Aquarium Resort, Curaçao
This Interval International Five Star Award resort is located on a private island next to the world-famous Curaçao Sea Aquarium and Dolphin Academy. The aquarium has a unique design that is right on the beach and continually refreshed with new seawater, and some of its offerings include encounters where you can snorkel or scuba dive with stingrays, sea turtles, sharks, sea lions, and many different kinds of colorful fish.
If you would prefer to enjoy your leisure time at the resort — which offers only two-bedroom timeshare units that sleep as many as six people — you can make use of amenities including an outdoor swimming pool, a separate children's swimming pool, boating, fishing, scuba diving, and more. Golf is nearby, as are horseback riding, tennis, a casino, and shopping.
The Village at St. James's Club, Antigua
The St. James's Club is located on a private 100-acre estate far across the island of Antigua from where the cruise ships dock and the bulk of tourism takes place. This Interval International Five Star Award resort is near the yachting centers of Falmouth and English Harbours, destinations that sailors seeking a private slice of paradise have savored for years. You can enjoy a bit of it yourself in one of the hotel-style, one-bedroom, or two-bedroom timeshare units that are available.
Close by the St. James's Club you'll find Nelson's Dockyard, which was built starting in 1725 to protect Royal Navy warships. You can also take a hike up to Shirley Heights, a former lookout post that now hosts a Sunday night sunset-and-steel-drum party led by the locals.
On-site amenities include boating, a casino, a fitness center, fishing, a playground, scuba diving, an outdoor pool, tennis courts, water-skiing, a Jacuzzi, and more. You can spend a few dollars in the nearby local shops or go horseback riding.
Virgin Grand Villas, St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands
The Virgin Grand Villas, which have earned the Gold Crown designation from Resort Condominiums International, are also known as the Westin St. John Resort and Villas. Each timeshare unit is on the resort's forty-six-acre tropical garden site and is air conditioned with a full kitchen and private laundry facilities.
Six lighted tennis courts and an outdoor pool are among the places you can hang out at the Virgin Grand Villas when you're not lounging on the resort's swath of oceanfront beach. There is child care available on site, as well, for those times when you want to hit the exercise room or relax in the sauna or hot tub.
Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort and Spa, Castries, St. Lucia
A Resort Condominiums International Gold Crown Resort, the Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort and Spa is an optional all-inclusive timeshare vacation spot that overlooks the sparkling turquoise sea from a classic Caribbean hillside. The resort is just five minutes from St. Lucia's international airport, and its units offer varying combinations of air conditioning, full kitchens, and private laundry facilities.
Ocean water sports are the main draw at this timeshare resort, though the site also offers tennis, fishing, adult and children's swimming pools, a playground, and live entertainment. There is a restaurant on the property, and golf and horseback riding are both within about three miles.