NEW YORK CITY, New York – Luxury Travel Advisor sat down Wednesday with representatives of the Regent Palms Turks & Caicos and learned how the resort was able to see a stellar 10-percent increase in occupancy from this time last year.
We chatted with General Manager Karen Whitt, who told us a decision was made amongst shareholders last year to incorporate more value into the resort from butler service for guests staying in Penthouse rooms to a revamped spa to a free Kid’s Club and free American breakfast.
“Ever since 2009, the way people travel is much different,” says Whitt. “They used to call a travel agent and say, ‘Ok, so where are you sending me?’ And now people call their agents and say, ‘Ok, so I looked up this deal and that deal.’ They are so researched now. They know the value that is out there today, so we felt like we really needed to give them more of it.”
For the first time, the resort recently added six butlers to serve clients staying at anyone of the six Penthouse rooms. In fact, Whitt says the butler service has gone so well that she is already looking to expand it. She says the resort will expand butler service for clients also staying in three-bedroom categories, but no timetable on the expansion has been announced.
The property’s newly revamped spa, which we told you about last year, continues to be a success. Although no physical changes were done to the spa area (and this is a good thing since the aesthetics of the area are about as tranquil as it gets), the menu has seen a major overhaul, combining both the best treatments the Caribbean has to offer with a heavy Asian influence.
Products from organically formulated lines, Sothys and Zents, are implemented within the spa’s world-renowned experiences including signature Caribbean-inspired treatments such as the "Mother of Pearl Conch Polish," which uses a precious blend of hand crushed local queen conch shells to gently revitalize and soften, and the indigenous island "Zareeba" treatment during which guests inhale an aromatic steam from a blend of freshly brewed therapeutic herbs followed by a toxin-releasing massage.
Signature Asian-inspired treatments include the "Oriental Essence Ceremony," a ginger infused salt scrub preceding a massage inspired by ancient Asian and Indian techniques using an aromatic spice sachet filled with smooth pebbles and soaked in warmed exotic oils. The "Bamboo Massage," practiced throughout Asia as an ancient form of body work, combines elements of techniques where therapists use varying lengths of bamboo to provide maximum muscle tension release in key areas of the body.
More Value for Families
Whitt also told us the resort to decided to change its Continental breakfast to an American breakfast and it is include in the room rate. Also, the resort's Kid's Club is now free. There used to be a $40 charge for a half day at the Kid's Club and a $75 for a full day plus lunch. Although there is no fee now, clients still have to pay for lunch.
Whitt told Luxury Travel Advisor the resort is seeing a major influx of South American clients. Whitt says, although they still make up a small percentage of overall guests, clients are beginning to come more frequently from such Latin American hot spots as Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela. As for the U.S., Whitt says it continues to be the resort’s biggest market, usually making up about 85 percent of the guests. Whitt points to the Midwest, mainly Chicago, as an American market the resort is starting to see a slight increase from.