Why You Need a Butler at the Beaches Resort and Spa in Turks and Caicos
I had all intension to write this wrap-up post about the #BeachesMoms conference at the all-inclusive Beaches Resort and Spa in Turks and Caicos that my husband attended weeks ago, but with the travel that quickly followed the trip I am still playing some major catch-up on writing.
When thinking about my angle for this article, several ideas ran through my head – how the Beaches resort is great for families, couples and the like – but then that seemed a bit too cliche after reading dozens of similar articles online. No, instead I wanted to share something more special and unique. Something, perhaps, that readers would be more curious about.
One of the perks that I personally received (via a contest I entered weeks before the conference) at the #BeachesMoms conference was a Butler Suite upgrade, which was a luxury that my husband and I had never experienced before and also something that I was asked about quite a bit by other attendees of the conference while there. So, this is my angle. The Butler Suite.
Before jumping to the highlights below, I must mention that while I was excited about the special pampering that a butler would provide, my husband was much more hesitant about the whole idea of someone potentially “invading” our space. Of course, this uneasiness came from an uninformed point of view, as we had never experienced this before and hadn’t researched the service at length before arriving. As you will see in the “acts” below, he does learn to accept this special service, but I felt it important to include this bit of information, as you, your spouse or partner may be in the same boat.
ACT I: HESITATION
Upon arrival at the Beaches resort in Turks & Caicos (a short drive from the airport, which is a teeny tiny airport and only a short wait through customs), we were warmly greeted with rum punch (let the vacation begin!) by the staff. Our luggage had already been tagged before getting on the shuttle bus from the airport, so it was carted off separately from us to be delivered directly to our room. I really liked not having to cart of my cases around.
As a Butler Suite guest, we were told to wait in the lobby area (which was a lovely open-air room with plenty of comfortable seating) until our butler arrived. We hadn’t been waiting more than a few minutes when our butler, Austin, appeared and introduced himself, shaking our hands and showing us the way to our fifth floor room in the Caribbean Village (there are four villages at this Beaches resort – Caribbean, Italian, Key West and French.
When we first walked into our two-floor suite, we could’t believe the size. Being on the top floor of the building, the ceiling was quite high with tons of beautiful windows both low and high. To my immediate right was a complete kitchen with a countertop that included bottled of liquor, a fully stocked refrigerator of sodas and juices, and all the cups, dishes and glasses we could possibly need. The best part was that everything was ours to use and consume. The joys of staying in a all-inclusive resort!
The lower level also included a full bathroom, living room area, dining room and a huge balcony overlooking the ocean. The dining table already had goodies on it for us – cookies, fruit and more yumminess.
The second level hosted the bedroom and another full bathroom (but with a bigger bathtub and shower), several large windows, and another balcony with an even better view. It didn’t take long to fall in love with this space.
After taking in the suite, it was time to start signing all of the necessary paperwork and getting information about the resort with Austin, as well as some insight on the services he could offer like unpacking our luggage, pressing clothing, and making reservations for the spa, restaurants, pool cabanas, etc. Austin also gave us a cell phone (an old school cell phone that ended up being a bit hard to hear from) for contacting him directly. Though the phone was a bit outdated, I have to admit that it was cool have a direct line to my butler. Before Austin went on his way, we requested a couples massage appointment at the spa the next day and reminded him of the candlelight dinner we booked online in advance, too. He went on his merry way and we took some time to relax in our spacious mansion.
Even after the introduction to our butler earlier in the day, Ryan (my husband) was still in doubt about this whole butler business as he mentioned a few times that “we don’t really need a butler” and “I’d rather it just be us.” I have to admit that later that night I felt a bit of the same.
That evening, while we were both resting in the bedroom upstairs after a long day of travel (and a conference event earlier that night that I attended), the butler cell phone rang DOWNSTAIRS (I had left it down on the dining room table). Being that we were both in mid-sleep and didn’t need any services at the time, we just let it ring. About 10-15 minutes later, it rang again, so we let it ring out again. Another 10-15 minutes went by and again it rang. Finally, after a FOURTH call attempt, I ran downstairs and grabbed the phone to answer it, obviously very tired and annoyed that it. just. kept. ringing.
On the other end of the call was Arnold, our nighttime butler (there is a daytime AND nighttime butler), but it was very difficult hearing him through the outdated phone. After a bit, I found out that Arnold wanted to introduce himself and take any appointment requests for restaurants, pool cabanas for the upcoming days. I admitted that I was resting when we called, was very tired and didn’t need any reservations at that time. He did apologize for interrupting and did not call again that evening. I feared that this would be the nighttime ritual every evening during the length of our stay, which I absolutely did not want, but this event proved to be the only of its kind. Thank goodness.
As the days and nights went by during our stay, the more and more we began to embrace and appreciate our butlers. Beautiful seating was arranged for us at every restaurant we ate at (along with some flowers on the table each time!), they would personally guide to any location we weren’t familiar with (even to our spa appointment), anything we needed for the room was fetched right away (like the toothpaste I left at home) and we always felt special and pampered. If we needed anything at all, they were always there to quickly accommodate. We felt like rock stars.
ACTIII: NEVER LOOKING BACK
By the time our last day at Beaches arrived, we were full-blown butler lovers. We felt comfortable calling Austin or Arnold for anything we needed, appreciated the special seating at the restaurants (this proved to be one of the best perks) and all the special trays of food we receiving during our stay.
Our checkout process was no different, either. Luggage was handled for us, finalizing the bill was fast and speedy, boarding passes were printed and our car service was ready to go right on time. When we arrived at the airport, we were also helped right away and we also discovered that were were upgraded to first class! Of all my travels, I’ve never been seated in first class, so this was quite a treat!
As you can tell, we were big fans of the butler service and in my opinion, it is well worth the extra splurge to make a vacation truly special. Why lift a finger when you’re in the Caribbean, anyway?
So, to recap, I wanted to provide an easy list of services that a butler can provide at the Beaches resort…
WHAT A BUTLER CAN OFFER
- unpacking luggage
- pressing clothing
- special trays of snacks, fruit and food
- making appointments for spa, special restaurants, pool cabanas, activities
- bringing supplies for room, like toiletries, drinks, etc.
- reserving a table for every meal that includes flowers and a nice view
- walking you to all restaurants or areas you aren’t familiar with
- upgrading your seat on the flight home
- providing a car for transport to airport
WHAT TO TIP A BUTLER
Ah, the tip. We went back and forth a lot on the tip because we honestly had no clue. At the Beaches resorts, tips are not accepted by any employees EXCEPT butlers and we were left wondering what the heck to tip our beloved butlers. I even chatted to a few of my conference buddies about it and one in particular went directly to a Beaches public relations representative and just plain asked her. I’m so glad that she did! The rep advised paying $100/day total for full-time services, as in using a butler several times each day. Since we were more in the part-time or less window, we paid a total of $200 for our 3-night stay. We still wonder if this was a fair amount, honestly.
HOW TO BOOK
I know that I didn’t even get into my thoughts/review of the resort itself, so let me quickly say that it was a beautiful place that we cannot wait to get back to. All-inclusive at Beaches truly means everything is included – food, alcohol, activities, beach and more.
If you are interested in booking a butler suite, visit www.beaches.com.
Disclosure – I received a discounted rate to the Beaches resort.