Conde Nast Traveler’s 2012 Readers Choice Awards Helps Shine Light on Private Residence Clubs

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Conde Nast Traveler, whose motto is “Truth in Travel,” has named the Top 15 Resorts in the Caribbean as determined by the magazine’s 2012 Readers’ Choice Awards. Among them are some resorts that are also home to distinguished fractional ownership residence clubs, meaning those who find themselves returning again and again to their favorite spot could own a piece of that paradise without paying the exorbitant costs they might expect.

Just where and how can this dream become a reality? First, let’s jet off to Bermuda.

THE REEFS CLUB, Bermuda
Lauded by visitors and owners alike, The Reefs in Bermuda comes in at the head of the class in every subject: luxury accommodations, first-class service, excellent food and dining options, a prime location just steps from the beach and easy access to a host of activities, including snorkeling in the pristine ocean waters. In fact, according to Conde Nast Traveler, “there just aren’t enough accolades to go around.”

But we’ll go ahead and add one more to the growing list of things to recommend The Reefs: vacation home ownership at the resort in Bermuda at a mere fraction of the cost. Perched on a limestone cliff next to the hotel, The Reefs Club is an enclave of 19 residences overlooking a secluded pink sand beach. Each elegant two- and three-bedroom Club residence reflects classic Bermudian style. Floor-to-ceiling retractable windows reveal panoramic ocean vistas and the residences are steps from private amenities, the La Serena Spa and three acclaimed restaurants.

Residences at The Reefs Club start as low as $350,000 and, as a fractional ownership property, incur a government fee of only 6.5%. Owning a residence at The Reefs Club could cost significantly less than what you would pay in taxes alone on a traditional Bermuda home, and far less than you would rack up in hotel bills during repeat visits.

Tuckers Point Bermuda Private Residence ClubROSEWOOD TUCKERS POINT, Bermuda
Described by Conde Nast Traveler as “a little-known jewel,” Bermuda’s Tuckers Point is made up of 200 acres of the most beautiful waterfront land in Bermuda, neighboring the estates of Tucker’s Town and offering breathtaking vistas of Castle Harbour, Harrington Sound and the Atlantic Ocean.  For those aspiring to own a slice of paradise, Tucker’s Point offers superb Estate Homes and Town Homes, exquisite villas and a select few waterfront residences.

Ownership opportunities in this exclusive locale are rare. In fact, deeded fractional ownership and whole ownership waterfront residences along Harbour Drive are the remaining real estate opportunities. Residence Club villas start at $295,000 and single-family homes start at $3.2 million.

ISLE DE FRANCE CLUB,  Hôtel Saint-Barth, St. Barts
This “very French island retreat” on the island of St. Barts is situated on the 10 acres of the Isle de France Hotel and offers one and two bedroom villas and cottages with private sunning terrace, beach view decks, private pools and jetted tubs for use by the Club Members and their guests.  The luxury tropical villas are surrounded by Isle de France’s own tropical garden. The Isle de France Club provides its Members with a 75-year leasehold interest in one of the villas or cottages. Only nine Members will share in each villa or cottage.

Truly, the readers of Conde Nast Traveler can recognize luxury when they see it, and we know our readers can appreciate such luxury, especially when there’s an opportunity to get maximum value without sacrificing the benefits and amenities that make these resorts so attractive in the first place. The prestigious designations these resorts have earned are richly deserved, and the opportunity to own real, deeded property in them means that private residence clubs will continue to gain recognition as the smarter way to own a vacation or second home in paradise, wherever that may be.