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Last week I shared the bad news that the Radisson Blu St. Martin Resort had been sold to Riu Hotels & Resorts. According to this article it will be renamed the Riu Palace St. Martin on June 1. I had hoped to use Club Carlson points there for a family vacation at some point in the future, but in the world of miles and points there is never a guarantee about the future, and looks like we missed out on this opportunity. This is a bummer not just because it looks like it would have been a nice place to use Club Carlson points, but especially because when you have the Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature® Card the last award night is free. This theoretically meant that you could book two nights under your name, and then two nights in your spouses name (assuming you both have the co-branded cards) to get four award nights for the price of two.
However, there are still several properties in the Caribbean where you can use Club Carlson points and take advantage of the last award night free perk of the co-branded credit card. Here are three properties that are worth considering if you want to enjoy sand and beautiful water while burning some Club Carlson points. I have yet to get a chance to stay at any of them, so can’t yet speak from first-hand knowledge, but I sure hope to be able to in the not-so-distant future.
This hotel has 229 deluxe Garden View rooms, luxurious Beachfront and Grand Beachfront rooms and ultra-luxurious Suites are available. This hotel provides complimentary wireless high-speed internet access, a 300 ft pool with twin waterfalls and whirlpools, a fitness room, tennis courts and non-motorized water sports equipment. A full-service spa will be added in 2014.
44,000 points per night for a standard room
66,000 points for a premium Beachfront or Executive Beachfront
Max occupancy of 4 in both room types
Radisson Aquatica Resort Barbados
This newly refurbished resort in Barbados sits on two miles of white-sand beach, where you can snorkel, paddle board or swim with sea turtles. Local craft markets along with other shopping and cultural destinations are conveniently located within walking distance. There is complimentary Wi-Fi access throughout the property, an on-site Fitness Center, an outdoor swimming pool and multiple dining options. The resort has 124 guest rooms and suites with ocean or island views. There is complimentary Wi-Fi access.
44,000 points per night for a standard room
I didn’t see any premium room options on points
Max occupancy of 4
Radisson Aruba Resort Casino and Spa
This hotel appears online to be the nicest of the remaining Club Carlson properties in the Caribbean, though I think Aruba in general has some pretty nice points options. This property is a 15 acre resort set on a white sand beach. The Radisson Resort completed a $30 million renovation in 2012 and is surrounded by enchanting lagoons, fragrant gardens and beautiful, cascading waterfalls. There is also a Larimar Spa, casino, two swimming pools, and complimentary Wi-Fi access. It has some family friendly offerings such as Kids 5 and under eating free on the kid’s menu, a Kid’s Club for those ages 4-12, and free “Parents Night Out” on Thursdays if dining at Sunset Grille ($30 charge if going elsewhere).
50,000 points per night for lower floor Standard Room
75,000 points per night for Premium Rooms in the Bonaire and Curacao Towers
Max 4 in both room types
…and if you want a beach destination using Club Carlson points, but didn’t find what you were after in the Caribbean then I’ll throw in one more exotic option for good measure. As you may already know, Club Carlson points seem to be more valuable the further away from home you get!
Radisson Blu Resort, Gran Canaria
This ocean front resort has 189 rooms and suites that all have a private balcony overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. It is located a little over 90 miles off the Western Coast of Africa, but it is a Spanish island. It has what appears online to be a nice spa, free breakfast, and free internet. This looks like a great spot to visit one day – especially on points!
50,000 points per night for a standard room that is 35 meters
75,000 points per night for a Junior Suite that is 60 meters (max occupancy of 4)
If you have used Club Carlson points at these or other beach destinations, I’d love to hear your experiences. I’m still trying to decide which warm destination I want to use Club Carlson points at first!
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