NEWPORT, R.I., February 2003 - If frozen bonuses and a delayed economic recovery have left you in the cold this year, consider warming up in the Caribbean with low season, reduced rates after April 15.
Destination specialist Wimco, the luxury vacation villa and hotel reservations company, suggests that protracted vacation budgets can get a good stretch this spring and summer in an uncrowded Caribbean setting, particularly St. Barts which, as literally and figuratively part of France, may be as close to a European French experience as you can get this side of the Atlantic Ocean. St. Barthelemy, or St. Barts as it is most frequently known, is the Caribbean island in the French West Indies internationally noted for its sophisticated lifestyle appealing to fashion and entertainment industry leaders, exquisite accommodations and excellent restaurants, earning it the label of "Gourmet capital of the Caribbean."
As a luxury resort destination, St. Barts features reduced rates and value added packages for the low season in both hotels and private vacation villas. Villa rental rates on average drop 25 percent in low season that begins April 15 and runs through Dec. 14th… eight full months! An additional benefit of low season villa rentals is that larger villas with more bedrooms than needed can be rented at lower rates when only the number of bedrooms required are utilized.
Wimco's partner company, Sibarth Real Estate, manages 220 villas on St. Barts with accommodations ranging from $900 per week for one bedroom to $7,370 per week for five bedrooms after the April 15 low season starts. Wimco's website, www.wimco.com, frequently lists additional villas on its "Specials Page" that offer even more enhanced discounts.
"We're particularly excited about promoting St. Barts this year," said Janis Gordon, Vice President Sales & Marketing, "because of all of our choice islands, St. Barts duplicates a true European quality vacation. For those choosing to stay closer to home, you can have the best of both worlds here - an island vacation and the South of France. Other islands offer excellent value as well", she said.
On St. Barts four hotels extend noteworthy value-added programs in the low season. All offer choice accommodation, complimentary roundtrip airport transfers, daily breakfast, car rentals, some meals, taxes and service charges and more. Christopher Hotel promises five nights with a private terrace and ocean or garden view with each room. Its Pay 4/Stay 5 Package available April 1-Dec. 22 (except Sept. 1-Oct. 25) ranges per couple from $1,550 to $1,750. Eden Rock's 5-Night Honeymoon Package comes with a massage for two and is available April 27-Nov. 14, with rates from $2,050 to $4,550 per couple. Isle de France offers a 7-Night Summer Romance Package from April 21 to Oct. 31 (except Aug. 31-Oct. 15), with rates from $3,060 to $6,210 per couple. Guanahani, the largest hotel on the island at only 75 rooms, has a St. Barts Spree Package for five nights inclusive of two complimentary activities such as jet skiing or windsurfing. The dates are April 15-Oct. 31, with rates from $2,525 to $3,370 per couple.
Wimco has recently released its 8th edition of the Vendome Guide to St. Barthelemy, a glossy, 130-page magazine that is a virtual "how to" for getting the most out of visiting St. Barts.
Information about St. Barts and other Caribbean destinations is available on Wimco's award-winning website, www.wimco.com. The Vendome Guide to St. Barthelemy is sold through Wimco for $11 plus shipping and handling and is available by calling 800-932-3222 or visiting the company's website. Wimco-published brochures feature France, Italy, Barbados and St. Martin/Nevis/Anguilla and, coming in spring 2003, the Vendome Guide to the South of France and Italy.
Wimco offers over 1,000 luxury villas and distinctive hotels and resorts internationally in such select areas as Italy's Umbria region, France's Provence and St. Tropez and in the Caribbean (680 villas on 12 islands including St. Barts, St. Martin, Mustique, Nevis, Anguilla, Barbados and others).
For further information, write Wimco, PO Box 14671, Newport, RI 02840; Tel. 401-375-4598; Fax. 401-847-6290; or visit the website at www.wimco.com.
PRESS CONTACT: Widness Public Relations International