Agent

Cash cows of the Caribbean

Villa rentals thrive in markets with direct air access

Stiles Bennet beat me to the Turks and Caicos this year. The vice president and head of marketing at Newport, R.I.-based Wimco Villas, a private villa rental company, traveled to The Turks in March. I didn't make my trip until July.In a sense, we were doing the same thing: going to the Caribbean on business. OK, it was pleasurable work, and yes, there definitely was rest and relaxation involved, but it was business nevertheless. I was on a travel-writing assignment (my other life) and liked the idea of going to The Turks because, in the erratic Caribbean villa rental market, the island group was outclassing the competition and I was curious to see what was going on.Bennet wanted to reacquaint himself with some of the villas his company was renting and to check on the local property management companies that his firm had hired. The Turks and Caicos can be found just south of the Bahamas and consist of eight main islands and more than 20 isles. For tourists and investors, th...