If big hotel zones, crowded beaches and pools, and lots of costly cab rides and restaurant meals are not your idea of a heavenly vacation, then you'll love this condo, as we did.
THE UNIT: Very modern, clean and comfy, with a kitchen for those who love to make their own healthy, wonderful meals. Read the listings - everything is accurate. It also has a small laundry room with a washer. The whole place is lovely and well maintained. While there is no Office, per se, the concierge is always available by cell phone or in person overseeing the units and grounds throughout the day. The owner keeps in contact by email and is always accessible. They are very kind, attentive and helpful. If you know even a little Spanish, it's all the more easy and fun. It's all gated, so you'll need your key to leave and return.
LOCATION: You are just about a block and a half from the beach. And it is astounding: a wide-open section of Eagle Beach between nice, quiet timeshare properties. Even in high season, we had so much space on the sand and in the surf! The timeshares have palapas (shade stands) which are public. You can use your unit's beach chairs under them, but just not the timeshares' furniture. On the main street, you can walk to nice, reasonable restaurants and handy shops in either direction.
GETTING AROUND: We took a cab from the airport to the property ($25-30 for 4 people and lots of bags). The cabbie was very informative about the island and its ways. We soon rented a car because we needed supplies from the big grocery stores (making 3 meals almost each day, plus Balashi beer for the guys), and we wanted to explore the island throughout our stay. It was worth it and we'd do that again. The concierge can help you rent a vehicle, or go to La Quinta's office a short walk away.
WE LOVED: The unit and grounds and pool area, renting gear next door at AquaWindys and driving up to Malmok & Arashi Beaches for awesome snorkeling, going up to the lighthouse and checking out the wild side of the island, walking over to the Costa Linda for awesome half-price happy hour and early bird specials--right on the beach. La Quinta's outdoor bar was fun too.
WON'T DO NEXT TIME: Shopping or driving downtown when cruise ships are in, exploring the high-rise hotel complexes and restaurants (interesting, but too crazy for us), or visiting the Balashi Brewery and Baby Beach (disappointing for such a long drive).
THANK YOU ENZO, CYBIL, DIRIMA AND CREW!