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Background about Antigua
Antigua is one of the smaller Caribbean islands, and is in the eastern Caribbean, northeast of St. Kitts and Nevis, and north of St. Lucia and Dominica. The island is known for good snorkeling and scuba; visitors can also take day trips to scarcely-developed sister island Barbuda. (Together the two islands form the state of Antigua and Barbuda). Antigua was a former British colony and has historic districts that date from that period. Nelson's Dockyard National Park, for instance, is fully restored as a tourist attraction with 18th century details, and is also the only continually working Georgian-era shipyard in the world. During the colonial period Antigua was dominated by sugar production which continued for some time after slavery was abolished in 1834; today the economy depends on tourism. The island has a number of Antigua all inclusive resorts though many are adults-only or couples-only.
The St. James Club Resort & Villas
The St. James Club resort is part of the Elite Island Resorts chain, and has a 100-acre private peninsula, with two beaches and multiple pools and restaurants, on Antigua's southeast coast. Location is near English Harbor and Nelson's Dockyard. Families can stay in roomy two-story villas; suites are another way to enjoy extra room. Guestrooms, meanwhile, come in several types and some have private terraces. (Read more about the resort at About.com's Caribbean Travel site.)
As is typical at all inclusive resorts, non-motorized watersports are complimentary and at the St. James Club guests can try windsurfing, sailing, pedalboats, and kayaking.* Guests can also snorkel at the resort using gear available at the Watersports Center (which also offers diving excursions at an extra charge.)
The resort's two beach areas are Mamora Bay, on the Caribbean side of the island, and Coco Beach, on the Atlantic side. Non-motorized watersports are available at Mamora Bay; Coco Bech is ore likely to have waves.
This brief profile is meant to introduce this resort to family vacationers; please note that the iwriter has not visited in person.
Features for Families
Many all inclusives on Antigua are not family-friendly, so the St. James Club resort is a good find for guests with kids. Families can spread out in two-storey villas or 600 sq. ft suites, and the resort has a kids club and a kiddie pool.
The Kidz Club has a fenced play area, and a covered games area by the main pool. Activities might include art classes, nature trails, and seasonal themed programs for Halloween, Christmas, etc. Kids age two and up can go to the Kidz Club as long as they're potty-trained. (Kids who aren't potty-trained can come too, but must be accompanied by a parent.) Parents with babies are welcome to use the Kidz Club toys and games.
Outside the resort, possible outings that kids might enjoy include:
More about St. James's Club All Inclusive Resort
- Look for promotions such as Kids Stay, Play and Eat Free, and family air credits
- The Kidz Club has evening hours during busy periods.*
- Elite Island Resorts has other properties that welcome families, on Anguilla, St. Lucia, Nevis, and other Caribbean islands
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