06/29/2013

Camana Bay: Farmer's Market

During my last trip to Grand Cayman, I decided to swing over to Camana Bay one day to see what was happening. To my surprise, there was a great Farmer's Market set up right in the heart of Cayman's newest city. Not only is Camana Bay loaded with shops, restuarants, live music and more, but it also features a Wednesday Farmer's Market. The market runs form 12:00-7:00 every Wednesday.

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It's a great opportunity to stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables for your stay on the island. It also features many island souveniers, juices, smoothies, and other snacks.

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I decided to try their mango-banana smoothie and it was outstanding. We also picked up some fresh mangos and they were juicy and ripe and made a declicious snack during Happy Hour.There were also baskets, conch shells, jewelry and more.

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The Farmer's Market isn't large, but it's very good. I'd strongly recommend giving it a visit the next time you are on the island.

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

 

04/09/2013

Tortuga Rum

Have you ever tried a Tortuga Rum Cake? Have you ever heard of it? A staple of the Cayman Islands, Tortuga Rum Cake is a big hit amont tourists that visit the Islands. 

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Since 1984, Tortuga Rum has been a fixture of the Cayman Islands. They introduced the rums to the Cayman Islands primarily as a souvenier for the rapidly growing tourist industry. In 1987, they opened the first duty free rum-store and shortly after the now famous Tortuga Rum Cake.

By 1990 the demand for the Rum Cakes was so great that they expanded the company with a bakery.

In 1997, a Tortuga Rum Cake Company opened in Miami, Florida. They began to handle worldwide distribution, mail order and online sales. The Tortuga brand is now well-known by more than 20 million annual Caribbean tourists. Tortuga Rum Cakes are now the #1 exported item of the Cayman Islands and was named the "#1 Cruise Souvenir by Porthole Cruise Magazine.

So the next time you visit Grand Cayman, make sure you take a bite out of history-try a Tortuga Rum Cake!

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This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

03/17/2013

Drinks All Around!

When visiting the Cayman Islands, it is only natural to relax and have a drink or several. There are lots of options, in addition to your standard beer and wine. The Cayman Islands are known for their many different Island drinks. Guys, if you are going to get caught drinking a "girly" drink, the Cayman Islands are the place to do it. You won't know anybody anyway and some of them are delicions. Here are some examples of drinks you can get at any Cayman Island pool bar or beach bar:

  • Mudslide: Vodka, Kahlua liqueur and Bailey's (Virgin: Chopped Ice)
  • Cayman Lemonade: Vodka, Triple Sec, Peach Schnapps and Cranberry Juice (Virgin: Cranberry juice)
  • Rum Punch: Orange Juice, Pineapple Juice and Rum (Virgin: Orange Juice & Pineapple Juice)
  • Cayma Mama: Tortuga Rum, Tortuga Coconut Rum, Orange Juice and Pineapple Juice (Virgin: Orange Juice & Pineapple Juice)
  • Electric Lemonade: Vodka, Blue Curacao, Sprite. (Virgin: Sprite)
  • Daiquiris (Strawberry, Rasperry, Mango): Frozen drinks.

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There are lots of other options, but the above are my favorite. Don't be afraid to try something you woulnd't try back home. You are on vacation and the drinks always taste better in the Cayman sun.

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

02/24/2013

Seven Mile Beach: More Than Just a Beach

The beautiful Seven Mile Beach spans the Western shore of Grand Cayman, spanning the area from George Town to West Bay. This pristine beach can be spotted from an aerial shot as you fly into Grand Cayman. This is the most developed area of Grand Cayman. The sandy beach begins at our Sunset Cove property and you can walk or jog for a sandy 5.5 mile stretch. There are restaurants, bars, water sports and snorkel reefs along this Grand Cayman landmark. A "walk" up the beach can take an entire day. A mix of walking, wading and swimming can make for a leisurely stroll or get up in the morning for an early morning beach run.

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You can stop at Royal Palms and their beach bar for your favorite island drink. Or you could bring your snorkel gear and check out some of the beachside reefs, which have been known to be the home to stingray, barracuda and more. Perhaps you want to grab a football and play catch as you make your way down the beach. Do you have kids? Bring a bucket because they'll surely want to collect shells or build a sand castle. Have you ever parasailed? Sign up for a same-day trip at any of the many water sport stands along Seven Mile Beach. Do you want to race jet skis in the Caribbean Sea? Rent them for a thrilling ride, where you might even spot some giant sea turtles. 

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The opprotunities along Seven Mile Beach are endless, but one thing you will want to make certain to do is wear sunscreen and reapply frequently. The intense sun combined with the reflection off the water can cause a quick sun burn, even on a cloudy day. 

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

02/03/2013

The ABCs of Grand Cayman

I did a similar posting a couple years ago, but I thought it was time to refresh my list! Enjoy!

A: Atlantis-Take an under-water tour on the Atlantis Submarine. To spice it up a little bit, try the night trip.

B: Billy Bones-Visit the swim-up pool bar at Sunset Cove. With barside seating (out of the water) and barstool seating (in the water), they have all your favorite island drinks and a delicious food menu.

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C: Camana Bay-Spanning 500 acres from Seven Mile Beach to the North Sound, there is something for everyone in this new village. Check out the shops, restaurants, movie theater and more.

D: Dog House-A popular destination for those die-hard sports fans wondering how they are going to see their favorite NFL team play on Sunday. This sports bar has all the games. Located in Red Bay, just East of downtown George Town.

E: East End: If you have a car, take a drive to the East End. It will give you a great view of the non-touristy part of Grand Cayman. You'll see a lot of locals, homes, schools and more as you make the scenic drive along the coast. On the way home, stop at the Lighthouse Restaurant for a great lunch.

F: Fidel Murphy's: This Irish Pub is located right next door to Sunset Cove and provides great food and drinks for a reasonable price.

G: George Town: Head to the heart of downtown Grand Cayman for some duty-free shopping. However, check out the cruise ship schedule and try to time your visit downtown on a day with no cruise ships.

H: Happy Hour: Enjoy Happy Hour on the patio of your condo with your favorite beverage (wine for me) and snacks as you watch the beautiful Cayman sunset.

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I: Island Time: Rembmer that everyone in Grand Cayman operates on "Island Time". 9:00 means 9:20. There is no such thing as a quick meal. And sometimes you'll go to a shop in the middle of the day and there will be a sign that says "Be Back Soon" on the door. Don't worry about it. No problem, mon. You're on vacation.

J: Jolly Roger: Enjoy a sunset cruise on an old pirate ship, with all you can drink rum punch. Warning: These pirates go light on the juice.

K: Karma: Cayman's new sushi bar offers a great dining experience, complete with their specialty dessert-liquid nitrogen ice cream, prepared at your table from scratch.

L: Lazy: It's OK to be lazy in Cayman. It's your time to relax. Read a book. Lay in the sun. Cool down in the pool or ocean. Repeat.

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M: Morgan's Harbour. Visit West Bay and make a stop at Morgan's Harbour for a great dining experience at Calypso Grill with waterfront seating.

N: Nature: Enjoy all the beutiful things nature has to offer on one island. Flowers. Palm trees. Plants. Animals. Fish. Sunsets. Moonlight. 

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O: Ocean Swimming Cove: The newly created cove at Sunset Cove allows for swimming in the ocean perfect for kids as the cove keeps the water warm and protects against the big waves. Grab a drink and a raft and spend a few hours in the cove.

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P: Positano: Casanova's is the Island's best restaurant and my favorite dish is the Spaghettini Positano. The atmosphere, wait staff, wine and food are second to none at this island treasure. Stop in and visit Tony, Gianni, Antonio and the rest of the guys for a night you won't soon forget.

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Q: Quick: The vacation to Grand Cayman always goes too quick. Enjoy every moment because it truly is paradise.

R: Rum Point--Home of the Original Mudslide, Rum Point is a must-visit. If you can find a boat or jet ski tour to take you there, that is best because you don't have to worry about driving home after your Mudslides.

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S: Stingray City--One of the more unique places in the world, Stingray City offers the opportunity to swim with, pet, and feed these amazing animals. You might even score with a stingray back massage. 

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T: Turtle Farm--The Cayman Island's Turtle Farm is a great spot for children to visit where then can pet, hold, and learn all about turtles.

U: UV Rays--No matter how much sun you are used to or how much you tanned before you visited, lots of sunscreen is going to be needed. The Cayman Islands are located on the equator and combined with the reflection of the sun off the pool and ocean, the perfect receipe for sunburn.

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V: Video Camera: Take a video camera because there are sure to be moments you will want to remember forever.

W: Watersports--Take a walk down 7 Mile Beach and visit any of the Watersports stands. Jetski. Parasail. Kayak. Banana Boat Rides. They have it all for you or your family to enjoy.

X: XoXo: Weddings. Honeymoons. Anniversaries. There is no more romantic place than Grand Cayman in the world.

Y: Year-round: Grand Cayman is a year-round destination. There is never a bad time to visit Cayman. Whether in the hot summer months, or the warm winter months, the Cayman Islands are always comfortable and the water is always warm.

Z: Zoo: The Grand Cayman waters offer your very own under-water zoo full of animals and fish.

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This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

 

 

12/27/2012

Stingray City: As told by a Stingray.......

The following post is told by a stingray that resides at Stingray City in the North Sound of Grand Cayman. 

Hey humans! I am the longest living stingray in the North Sound. My name is Frank. That's right. Frank the stingray. Pretty clever, huh? I'm here to tell you how Stingray City was created and what we think of it. I hope you enjoy my story and maybe someday you'll even come visit us. I mean..I won't be around much longer, but the rest of my friends and family will be.

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We make our home in the North Sound of Grand Cayman, in the Caribbean Sea between West Bay and Rum Point. The shallow waters just south of the long reef are where we spend most of our time. It's kind of funny how we came to make this our home. 

A few decades ago, we noticed fishermen would return from their fishing trips in the deep sea and park their boats right in the same area to clean all the fish. It became very easy for us to eat because this occurred daily. The fishermen had to make a living so they'd fish every morning. We began to recognize the sound of the motors and knew the fish guts were coming. You wouldn't believe how delicious the scraps of fish that you guys throw away are. What a waste! Oh well, your misfortune is our survival. 

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Snorkel tours used to come by this area because of the beautiful reef and coral gardens nearby. Ironically, they used to blow a horn to notify their guests to get back on the boat when they spotted one of us. Now they market us and make money off us. Do we get a cut of that cash? Nope. All we get is an occasional squid fed to us. Sometimes it sucks to be a stingray!

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Once the locals realized we are completely  harmless, they began swimming with us, petting us, feeding us, and we kind of loved the attention. It has been going on this way for over 20 years. A marriage made in stingray heaven. 

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Every day. 365 days a year. Like clockwork. From about 9:00 AM until 3:00 PM, we have constant activity. Boats and boats full of people come to visit. It's funny because we are so excited to see you people, but we often hear screams, tears, and terror. I guess we take some time to warm up to. 

The waters are only waist deep so you don't even need a mask and snorkel if you don't want to. Oh and please, whatever you do, don't wear your big fins, or whatever you call them. It never fails that you step on us and those fins hurt! We pose for photos all day long. We give back massages. In exchange, you feed us squid and fish guts. It's a win-win for all of us. 

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I know our name scares some of you, but just beause we are called stingrays, it doesn't mean we sting. We don't really have a stinger, but rather a barb on our back. We never actively attack humans, but please don't step on the barb because that's our defense mechanism. 

There are dozens of boat tours that you can book to come visit us when you come to Grand Cayman. We look forward to meeting all of you and always welcome return visitors. After all, Stingray City is probably the coolest thing in Grand Cayman, so don't miss out!

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Well, that's all the time I have for blogging today. I hear the boat engines approaching, and I'm getting hungry. Until next time.............signing off.

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

 

12/09/2012

We've Gone Social (Media)!!

As Cayman Condos continues to grow as a company, we have continued to grow with the content we provide our guests, both former and future. We are excited to announce the addition of several Social Media avenues where you can now get information about your favorite island. I want to summarize every place you will find us so you can add us to your favorite websites on your computer or apps on your mobile device. If you have any suggestions for us at Cayman Condos for ways we can improve or things you'd like to see talked about or posted on our various platforms, please let us know!

  • Facebook: The most popular form of social networking has been facebook for quite awhile. We have a great following with almost 900 people who like our page. We often post trivia, contests, specials and more. You can find us at www.facebook.com/caymancondos.
  • Twitter: A great source for us to post quick posts in 140 characters or less. We often tweet about what is going on right now on the island. You can find us tweeting links to articles, specials, flights, pictures, and more. We have over 900 followers and are always looking for more people. You can find us at www.twitter.com/caymancondos.
  • Instagram: An app available on most mobile devices, Instagram has become the spot to post photos. You can find us on Instagram at "caymancondos". Instagram is only available on mobile devices (i.e. you can't view our pictures on any websites).
  • Pinterest: Pinterest is one of the fastest growing social media avenues. It's basically a virtual pinboard, where you can "pin" pictures of your favorite things. We currently have albums set up for Seven Mile Beach, Sunset Cove, Cayman Sunsets, North Sound, Rum Point, & Casanova's Restaurant. You can view our pictures, pin them to your bulletin board, like them, or comment on them. This is a really cool way to share your pictures with us while on your vacation or after you return. You can find out Pinterest page at www.pinterest.com/caymancondos.
  • Google+: We have recently joined Google+. This is a new Google-based social network, similar to Facebook that has been gaining popularity since it was created in 2011. It has grown to over 500 million users. We are excited to connect to many of you there. To join Google+, you need to create a google account (gmail) and you can find us at caymancondos1.
  • Stumbleupon: This is a new social bookmarking site. It's a great place for us to post content and links to exciting things going on in Grand Cayman. You can "stumble upon us" at http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/caymancondos.
  • Digg: This is another social bookmarking site very simlar to Stumbleupon. You can check it out and see which you prefer. This is a place to basically see what everyone is talking about on the Internet, which is constantly changing. We will do our best to stay up to date on the happenings in Grand Cayman. We are at www.digg.com and you can find us by searching caymancondos. 
  • YouTube: I'm pretty sure everyone is familar with YouTube. We will continue to post videos on YouTube that can hopefully help you with your visits to Cayman. We already have several cool videos up for you to view, including a tour of a condo and the preparation of Marinated Conch. You can find us at http://www.youtube.com/caymancondos.
  • LinkedIn: You and find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com and by searching Cayman Condos. We hope to post articles, links to our blog postings, and more if you want to link to us.

As you can see, we are making every effort to provide you with the best information we can to make your trip an exciting trip that you can look forward to. Please let us know if you have any other ideas for us and we will do our best to accomodate your wishes.

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

11/25/2012

Cayman Islands: Perspective of a 1-Year Old

After a long weekend of family, turkey, and football, I was having a tough time coming up with an idea for the weekly blog. I decided to let my 1 year old son write the blog for me. Enjoy.

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It's been six long months since I was in Grand Cayman and quite frankly I'm ready to go back. I asked Dad to take us in October and he said he was busy with work. I asked mom to take us and she said maybe in January. I've heard that before, but my fingers are crossed. When I was there in May it was pretty much the best vacation of my entire 1 year of life. Where else can you run around in a diaper and sunglasses all day? 

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Flying on the airplane was pretty cool. As we began to land on Grand Cayman, you could see the entire crescent=shaped island with the beautiful blue waters surrounding it. Once we landed and got in the taxi, I was loving all the beautiful palm trees and our taxi driver was so friendly. She was telling us stories about what was going on around the island.

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We went out for dinner that night to an amazing Italian restaurant called Casanova's. I had spaghetti. Everyoe else was drinking some kind of grape juice that they told me I couldn't have. They drank a lot of it. It came in a fancy bottle and they ordered a lot of bottles of it. We had a really fun dinner.

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I remember going to the turtle farm and playing with all kinds of turtles. It was really cool. I want a pet turtle now, but mom says no.

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I learned how to swim in the kid's pool so mom and dad let me try the big person pool. There was a place IN the water to get food. It was called Billy Bones and I had a grilled cheese almost every single day. Everyone I was with kept drinking these fancy milkshakes, apple juice, and fruit punch. They wouldn't even let me try one sip. Selfish. 

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At night we would gather on the porch of our condo and watch a beautiful sunset. It was pretty awesome how every single night there was a gorgeous sunset that we got to see. Again, everyone was drinking this fancy grape juice. I can't imagine why they love it so much, but they sure go through a lot of bottles of it.

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One day we went on a boat in the middle of the ocean. We got to play with stingrays and saw many cool fish. That day was my favorite day of the whole trip. We even stopped at a place called Rum Point to lay on the beach, eat lunch, and swim in the ocean. I didn't like getting that ocean water in my eyes, but I did love swimming in it. Everyone was drinking these fancy milkshakes again. They called them "mudslides" whatever that means. They gave me a bottle of water. Thanks mom.

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We went for a long walk on the beach one day. My toes were in the water. I played with seashells. I made a sand castle. I buried my Grandpa in the sand. I could get used to playing on the sandy beach every day.

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We had a really cool enclosed cove right in front of our condo at Sunset Cove that allowed us to sit in the water for hours. The water was so warm and it was really fun. Mom put sunscreen on me like 10 times, but I suppose that's because we didn't see a cloud all day.

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As you can see, the Cayman Islands are pretty much the coolest place on earth and I can't wait to go back in January. Maybe THIS time, mom and dad will actually let me try one of those milkshakes or a glass of that grape juice.

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This blog posting was written by my 1 year old son, Brett. Hope you enjoyed it.

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

 

11/18/2012

Cayman Islands voted "Friendliest Country in the World"

In my visits to the Cayman Islands, I've always thought that the locals are some of the nicest people I have ever met. They are willing to give directions, suggest things to do while on the island, chat, and frequently invite you to go out for drinks with them like you are long-lost friends. 

Because of my experiences on the island, I wasn't surprised at all last week when the HSBC Expat Explorer Survey was released announcing the Cayman Islands as the friendliest country in the world. 

Think about that. There are a lot of countries in the world. There are a lot of friendly people in the world. However, this survey determined Caymanians to be second to none. The Cayman Islands Premier, McKeeva Bush, said "I am delighted to learn that the Cayman Islands has earned the top spot and international recognition as being the No. 1 friendliest country in the world."

The survey was ratings over a variety of factors, including "how  kid friendly the country was" and "economy", but the main four categories were "ability to befriend locals, success in learning the local language, capacity for integrating themselves into the community, and ease in which they fit into the new culture." Based on these criteria, it is no surprise to me that the Cayman Islands won. 

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Thinking back on my times on the island, I remember playing pick up basketball on the local court with Caymanians I had never met and they welcomed me as though I was one of them. I also remember talking to taxi drivers and getting all the local gossip, which is always entertaining. The next time you visit Grand Cayman, don't be afraid to strike up a conversation with any local you run into. They are charming, funny, and often times very helpful.

 

Australia finished second on the list, while the United Kingdom was third. The United States finished seventh.

This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.

10/28/2012

Tricks & Treats

Booooooooo!!!! I thought I would gather a collection of photos from various Halloween parties on Grand Cayman this week and post them to get everyone in the Halloween spirit. I wish all of you a safe and happy Halloween week. Be safe out there.

Please e-mail me at joe@cicondos.com or tweet me @caymancondos or post on our facebook page at www.facebook.com/caymancondos if you have any Halloween costumes you'd like me to add to this posting. The best costume will receive a special Halloween discount off your next stay at Cayman Condos.

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This blog posting was brought to you by Cayman Condos. For information on any of our blog postings or to inquire about booking a condo, please contact our office at 800-999-1388. Something you love about the blog? Something you hate? Something you want me to write about? Let me know: joe@cicondos.com.