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Islands

Where to Stay in Turks and Caicos, for Every Personality Type

Idyllic Turks and Caicos is so relaxing that the only real decision you have to make is where to stay. Don't worry—Jetsetter's editors are here to play matchmaker, serving up resorts for your travel personality, whether you want to get away with the fam or hide out on a private island.

Once a playground for pirates, this northern Caribbean getaway has managed to escape the modern day pillaging of development that has plagued other islands. The main island of Providenciales didn’t even get its first resort until the 1980s. The result? An unspoiled 230 dreamy miles of white-sand beaches, year round temps in the 80s and an under-the-radar vibe (shocking, seeing as how celebs from Madonna to Paul McCartney, Bill Gates to Tom Cruise have sunned themselves on these perfect shores).

You don’t come to Turks and Caicos to check off tourist attractions or rage into the wee hours. You come to relax. And the tony hotels cater to just that, acting as self-contained little vacation havens. Since your hotel with play the biggest role in your T&C getaway, we’ve matched up a spot for every sort of traveler, from design hounds to honeymooners.

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Best for snorkelers: Windsong on the Reef

The world’s third largest barrier reef sits just offshore from Turks and Caicos, and Windsong on the Reef, located on prime Grace Bay, is just a few swim strokes from one of the best snorkeling spots on the island: Bight Reef. Go in the morning or late afternoon for the best visibility, and be sure to look for hawksbill turtles, reef sharks, bottlenose dolphins, barracuda, and starfish amid a carnival of iridescent, striped and rainbow-hued tropical fish—the sheer numbers will dazzle you as much as the colors.

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Best for romance: The Palms Turks and Caicos

Perfect for honeymoons, babymoons, or any relaxing vacation à deux, this genteel all-suites resort specializes in the kind of indulgences that can make a romantic Caribbean getaway above-and-beyond idyllic. Bougainvillea blossoms brighten the stark white coral stone exteriors, while Grace Bay Beach—and its ocean views—provide an abundance of scenic backdrops, especially at sunset (best enjoyed from your private terrace). A deluxe, water-scaped spa tempts plenty of couples from their lounge beds by the infinity pool; ditto the candlelit al fresco dinners at the resort’s restaurant, Parallel 23.

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Best for design hounds: Grace Bay Club

Not that it needed to, but Grace Bay Club upped its game even further by teaming up with celebrity interior designer Thom Filicia for a head-to-toe remodel a few years back. The swank sleep now boasts a new lobby, a tranquil, sophisticated scene with high-backed, pod-like tufted armchairs, coral-hued cushions, and fluttering potted palms. After additional renovations in the guestrooms, every inch of the resort now bears the mark of Filicia’s elegant-yet-easygoing approach to décor, while showcasing his muse for this project—the warm, welcoming island of Providenciales itself.

RELATED: 10 Incredible Hotels in Turks and Caicos

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Best for the party crowd: Gansevoort Turks and Caicos

The original Gansevoort in New York brought a models-and-bottles party scene to the city’s rowdy Meatpacking District, and that vibe has flown south to the brand’s Providenciales resort. You’re greeted with a rum punch upon arrival, and pretty party people recline on cabanas that appear to float above the infinity pool, kick it with frozen cocktails at the beach, and flirt late night at the Stelle Beach Bar. The apartment-style rooms, with their kitchenettes and minibars, are well suited to chilling with new friends until the wee hours.

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Best for activity hounds: Blue Haven Resort

Located on the northeastern part of Providenciales, this boater’s paradise is positioned right next to the marina—the best jumping off point for water sports, scuba dive excursions, and fishing boat charters on the island. Another plus: The TCI ferry terminal is minutes away, making action-packed day trips to the North and Middle Caicos easily accessible. Back on land, there are volleyball and bocce ball courts to keep you occupied at the resort; multi-taskers love the swim-up bar.

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Best for deal chasers: Villa del Mar

Even the most discerning travelers appreciate an exceptional bang-for-your-buck situation, and on Turks and Caicos, this laidback boutique retreat is it. While not a beachfront hotel, the rates here are far lower than you'll find at neighboring properties. The bonus feature? You’re right across the street from Grace Bay Beach (a two or three minute walk, tops), complete with dedicated attendants to hook you up with lounge chairs, water, towels, and umbrellas. Great for a “no shirt, no shoes, no problem” getaway, the 42-room property also has two pools and a hot tub…which may be all the cushiness you need.

RELATED: The Most Romantic Getaways Under $300

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Best for families: Alexandra Resort

At Alexandra Resort, take advantage of the prime location on Grace Bay Beach, where plenty of families plunk themselves down and stay the entire day. For parents who need a break, the hotel’s Kids’ Pelican Club offers supervised activities from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (the fee is just $25 per child, lunch included). Guestrooms come with a full kitchen or kitchenette (perfect for heating up infant formula or whipping up some mac and cheese for a picky eater) and rates include complimentary snorkeling equipment and bike rentals; there’s even a daily manager’s happy hour for mom and dad.

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Best for homebodies: The Somerset on Grace Bay

With enormous private terraces, washer/dryers, and state-of-the-art stainless steel kitchen appliances, the villas and suites at The Somerset on Grace Bay are perfect for those who want to make Turks and Caicos feel like home. Starting at 1,400 square feet, the deluxe, apartment-like accommodations are designed for vacations that are about keeping it simple, with minimal dining out and multiple nights in. There’s a grocery store about fives minutes away, so you can buy food and booze on your way from the airport, or you can have the hotel’s concierge stock your kitchen before you check in.

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Best “something for everyone”: Sands at Grace Bay

Vacationing with a group? The beachfront property Sands at Grace Bay takes care of everyone—obsessive sunbathers, fitness fanatics, and the five-year-old who just wants to play in the pools (there are three). Tennis courts, complimentary bicycles, and non-motorized water sports are among the resort’s family-friendly amenities. For shopping, it’s a 10-minute walk to the downtown’s boutiques; for drinking, there’s a bar stool at Hemingway’s with your uncle’s name on it (they open at 8 a.m.). And if you get tired of beachin’ it, there’s a coconut grove filled with hammocks—perfect for grabbing an afternoon snooze.

RELATED: JS Editors’ Favorite Hotel Deals of the Week

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Best for over-the-top luxury: COMO Parrot Cay

The 1,000-acre private island of Parrot Cay is a 30-minute boat ride from Providenciales, and its eponymous resort is the height of Caribbean elegance. Offering seclusion, the finest service, and world-class dining in equal measure, this haute COMO hideaway is where high-profile luminaries come to slow things down (Donna Karan owns real estate here). Sunbathe on a seemingly deserted mile-long stretch of sand, luxuriate in your private plunge pool, or retreat to the spa for the signature Como Shambhala massage.

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Best for laidback types: Beach House

You chose Turks and Caicos because you heard it was chill, secluded, and refined, and you’d like a resort with a vibe to match. That’s where the 21-suite, plantation-style Beach House pad comes in: free of fuss, pretension, and raucous partiers, the atmosphere is defined by hushed voices, soothing décor, rustling beach grass, and gently-crashing waves. You come here to completely check out and lounge around in your beach coverup (sans makeup and shoes). For the ultimate in privacy and relaxation, stay in a suite on the second or third floor.

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