The Somerset on Grace Bay Rating: 4.5 Pearls
Turks and Caicos Islands

Oyster Review Summary

Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators

Pros

  • 4.6 acres of gorgeous oceanfront property
  • Two stunning pools: a long reverse current lap pool and an immaculate infinity-edge pool
  • Warm, attentive service
  • Freebies include daily breakfast, Wi-Fi, a lending library, and snorkeling gear, kayaks, and beach games
  • Fitness center includes a steam room
  • Two delicious restaurants, including the exceptional O’Soleil
  • Elegant rooms come standard with 42-inch flat-screen TVs, marble floors, and granite countertops
  • Guest-only service and amenities on the resort’s beachfront

Cons

  • Some inconsistent details in the individually owned units
  • Bath products are low-end for this level of resort
  • No spa or tennis courts
  • Expensive dining options (like elsewhere in Turks)

Bottom Line

A sophisticated, modern resort with stunning views, the 53-room Somerset is a cut above most Providenciales properties. The food is overpriced (though excellent) and the property lacks a spa (but beachside treatments can be arranged via an off-site establishment) or tennis courts, but its two beautiful pools, elegant grounds, top-notch rooms, and pristine beachfront allow it to rival some of the island’s more well-known luxury options like Grace Bay Club and the Gansevoort.

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Oyster Hotel Review

 Scene

A sumptuous beachfront resort highlighted by spectacular service, European panache, and two amazing pools with jaw-dropping views

The lawn
The lawn

With a stately fountain in the center of a grand circle, a crisp croquet lawn surrounded by lush gardens, and Mediterranean villa architecture, the Somerset exudes quiet sophistication. Once in the lobby, the only thing giving away your tropical location is the soft blue and green hues of the French chairs, fainting couch, and ornate hand-blown glass sculpture behind the front desk.

This nuanced version of island style is typical of the 53-unit resort. At any one time you may find design references to Italy (Roman busts adorned with seashells), France (Gothic-style sconces and chandeliers), and even Thailand (Asian-inspired umbrellas with tassels).

A glance at the spectacular oceanfront pool area, however, will quickly affirm that you are indeed on Grace Bay, one of the world’s most spectacular beaches. Complementing -- or perhaps even rivaling -- the turquoise ocean are two spectacular pools: one reverse current lap pool (the island’s longest) with an underwater audio system, and one sprawling negative-entry infinity-edge pool -- both with padded teak lounge chairs arranged ever so perfectly. The scenery is so impressive that guests tend to have a hard time sitting still. While in the pool, it’s impossible not to yearn for the crystalline ocean; yet, once on the beach, the pool looks too good to ignore.

The 4.6-acre property is small enough that the staff will likely remember your name (while I was checking in, the concierge appeared to have inside jokes with several of the guests that stopped by). And their warm demeanor and helpful attitude make it likely you’ll remember theirs as well.

Of course, the property is lacking a few key amenities, like a spa (though beachside treatments can be booked through an off-site location) and tennis courts. Nonetheless, a fitness center and two restaurants complete the resort’s offerings, for a fairly well-rounded assortment.

 Location

On the world-renowned Grace Bay, within walking distance of great shopping and restaurants

Located on a central portion of 12-mile Grace Bay, the resort is sandwiched between the upscale Regent Grand and the low-end Sibonné Beach Hotel. Though the area clearly covers a wide spectrum of quality, the beach itself is as pristine as you can get, with sand as fine as flour and the clearest of water. Off the beach, there are plenty of great shops and restaurants within walking distance, as well as additional attractions a short drive or taxi ride away.

  • 15-minute drive from Providenciales International Airport
  • 1-minute walk to Grace Bay (property is located on the beach)
  • 15-minute walk to shops and restaurants at Regent Village and Salt Mills shopping centers
  • 3-minute drive to Graceway grocery store
  • 7-minute drive to Provo Golf Club
  • 10-minute drive to Smith’s Reef for snorkeling
  • 15-minute drive to the Caicos Conch Farm, the world’s only conch farm
  • 20-minute drive to Da Conch Shack and Rum Bar

 Rooms

Three unique sections, all with elegant furnishings -- but the cheapest rooms are painfully small

Stirling House One-Bedroom Suite
Stirling House One-Bedroom Suite

The resort is divided into three distinct sections: the Garden Cottages near the restaurant, which overlook a croquet lawn and range from one- to three-bedroom suites; the Stirling House, which features one- to three-bedroom units and suites with pool/ocean or garden views; and 16 ocean-view Estate Villas, each of which comprises an entire floor. All 53 units are elegant with travertine floors, granite countertops, Viking kitchen appliances (except for in the standard units, which lack kitchens), 42-inch flat screen TVs, and marble bathrooms.

Most units are individually owned, which means there is bound to be some inconsistency. For instance, in one of the three-bedroom beachfront villas, I saw a note in the master closet reminding guests not to steal the bathrobes, and a curtain in the twin bedroom that was locked into place over the window (likely to hide the parking lot view).

  • Marble bathtubs with jets
  • Generic Küdos Spa products in the bathroom are usually seen in the island’s lower-end hotels
  • Gourmet kitchen with Viking appliances (in all suites but not the Stirling standard room)
  • Individually owned units mean some inconsistent -- and sometimes tacky -- details
  • Plasma televisions with cable, DVD/CD surround sound system, and iHome docking station for iPod
  • In the Estate Villas, one- to five-bedroom residences include wraparound terraces, grand bathrooms with jetted hot tubs, outdoor Jacuzzis and barbecue grills, and wine coolers.
  • In the Estate Villas, some windows (in extra bedrooms and elsewhere) face parking lots

 Features

Two gorgeous beachfront pools and stunning grounds, but no spa or tennis courts

The pool
The pool
  • An exceptional pool area with reverse current lap pool featuring underwater audio system and negative-entry infinity-edge pool right on the edge of the beach
  • On the beach, guest-only lounge chairs, dome shades, and umbrellas
  • Beachside and poolside service
  • Decent fitness center with Cybex cardio and weight machines, dumbbells, yoga balls, and aerobic steps as well as a steam room
  • Croquet lawn doubles as an immaculate outdoor venue for a weddings or other lavish events
  • Free non-motorized water sports Hobie Cats, kayaks, paddleboards, and snorkeling gear
  • No spa (though treatments can be booked through an off-site location) or tennis courts
  • A seasonal kids’ club with half-day, full-day, and evening sessions like stargazing in the telescope tower and sand castle-building lessons
  • Free parking
  • View full list of amenities

 Food

A gorgeous gourmet restaurant with lounge and tapas bar, and a casual poolside lunch venue

O’Soleil might just be the most impressive resort restaurant on the island, with an all-white dining room featuring soaring ceilings, leather-paneled walls, and ornate chandeliers. What’s more, the food is just as remarkable, showcasing local dishes with unexpected twists -- for example, the conch chowder laced with crème fraiche and Caribbean rum. The unfortunate, if somewhat expected, drawback, of course, is the restaurant’s expensive prices.

More affordable is Somerset’s poolside café and bar, LunAsea, which is open only for lunch from 11 to 6 and serves casual fare like fish tacos and jerk chicken wraps, though some portions are a bit small.

 Bottom Line

A sophisticated, modern resort with stunning views, the 53-room Somerset is a cut above most Providenciales properties. The food is overpriced (though excellent) and the property lacks a spa (but beachside treatments can be arranged via an off-site establishment) or tennis courts, but its two beautiful pools, elegant grounds, top-notch rooms, and pristine beachfront allow it to rival some of the island’s more well-known luxury options like Grace Bay Club and the Gansevoort.

Things You Should Know About The Somerset on Grace Bay

Address

  • Princess Drive, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos

Room Types

  • Five Bedroom Penthouse - Ocean View
  • One Bedroom Suite - Garden View
  • One Bedroom Suite - Ocean View
  • One Bedroom Villa - Ocean View
  • Standard Room - Garden View
  • Three Bedroom Suite - Garden View
  • Three Bedroom Suite - Ocean View
  • Three Bedroom Villa - Ocean Front
  • Three Bedroom Villa - Ocean View
  • Two Bedroom Suite - Garden View
  • Two Bedroom Suite - Ocean View
  • Two Bedroom Villa - Ocean View

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Nearby Hotels to Consider

The Alexandra Resort and Spa
Sibonne Beach Hotel Grace Bay
Sands at Grace Bay
The Regent Grand

Hotel Features

Number of Rooms: 53
Pool: Yes
Fitness Center: Yes
Internet Access: Yes
Pets Allowed: Yes
Cribs: Yes
Kids Club: Yes
Jacuzzi (in room): Yes
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Hotel Information

Location: Turks and Caicos Islands
Address: Princess Drive, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
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