With an abundance of powder-soft sands, coconut covered hills, and lush valleys of sugar cane and bananas, it should come as no surprise that the Caribbean is the number one holiday destination in the Americas. With cold weather, dark days and winter storms gripping much of the northern hemisphere, some are craving a warm sea breeze, poolside cocktails and glorious beaches. To help you pick the right spot, I made a selection of my 10 favourite Caribbean luxury resorts, which rank among the most exclusive hotels in the world.
COMO Parrot Cay, a favourite among celebrities, is an award-winning Caribbean luxury resort set on its own private island of 1,000 unspoilt acres with a mile-long powdery soft beach. This exclusive island hideaway delivers foot-in-the-sand luxury combined with COMO’s impeccable service ethic, holistic therapies, and world-class cuisine. All rooms and suites have whitewashed interiors furnished with soft, cotton-covered chairs, airy four-poster beds and teak furnishing. The real stars are the private villas, with their own pools, direct beach access as well as 24-hour service of COMO’s acclaimed butlers.
Jade Mountain offers one of the Caribbean’s most mesmerizing and luxurious resort experiences, especially for honeymooners. The resort’s unique and impressive design, with individual bridges leading to exceptional infinity pool suites and rugged stoned-faced columns reaching towards the sky, has wowed guests for more than a decade. With the fourth wall entirely absent, Jade Mountain’s 29 suites (called “sanctuaries”) are stage-like settings from which to embrace the full glory of St Lucia’s twin peaks, the Pitons World Heritage Site, and of course, the eternal Caribbean Sea.
Somewhere between idyllic and perfection sits a Puerto Rico resort of such intimate luxury and rare character, it calls to those who believe every journey should be a voyage of discovery. Once a sugar plantation, Dorado Beach caught the eye of visionary Laurance Rockefeller, who transformed the lush landscape into Puerto Rico’s most exclusive luxury resort. With its serene coastline, private residences, spa sanctuary, and a harmonious sense of place that blends masterfully into the natural surroundings, Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, invites guests to arrive spellbound, and depart speechlessly.
Belmond Cap Juluca is an island-chic beachfront hideaway located along the intimate crescent and healing shores of Maundays Bay on the exclusive island of Anguilla in the British West Indies. The glamorous and idyllic resort offers Belmond world-class service and is considered to have the best beach in the Caribbean. Capturing the charisma, character and charm of the Caribbean, Belmond Cap Juluca recently completed extensive renovations of its 23-whitewashed Moorish villas, taking the already impeccable resort to an even higher standard of excellence.
Hermitage Bay is a natural paradise – a perfect retreat for anyone wanting to escape the stresses and strains of a busy life. The privately-owned, luxury, all-inclusive, 5-star boutique hotel is located in a perfect bay on the west coast of Antigua. The 27 individual suites nestle on the beach and hillside in beautiful tropical gardens, in the perfect seclusion offered by the surrounding 140 acres of lush, undeveloped land. Reclining in a plantation chair on their verandah, guests here feel transported back to Antigua’s colonial era – with all the conveniences of an upscale hotel.
Throughout this ultra-luxury resort on the tiny Caribbean island of Anguilla, modern architectural forms interplay with the natural environment, while sophisticated, contemporary interiors by designer Kelly Wearstler add rich textural contrasts to a laid-back, beachy feel. From elegant garden-view guestrooms to beachfront villas with private pools, the resort’s wide range of luxury accommodations fit all tastes. And if that’s not enough yet, the resort sits atop a bluff overlooking two of the most gorgeous beaches in Anguilla with sugar-white sand and turquoise waters.
Nestled on a 300-acre private Caribbean island two miles (three kilometers) from Antigua, Jumby Bay Island, an Oetker Collection property, is a secluded luxury haven filled with lush landscapes, stately palm trees and stunning white-sand beaches. Reachable only by boat, with no hint of urban intrusions in sight, this privately owned hideaway has remained largely unchanged for centuries. The resort features 40 tastefully decorated rooms and luxury vacation villas, that embody both the beauty of nature and the tradition of elegance with inspiring surroundings and simple sophistication.
Set on the island of Providenciales in Turks and Caicos, Amanyara is a secluded haven embracing the best elements of the Caribbean. Bordering the pristine reefs of Northwest Point Marine National Park, acclaimed for some of the world’s best wall and reef diving, the ultra-luxury Caribbean resort is managed by Aman – one of the world’s most exclusive hotel brands – and blessed with a magnificent white beach. Offering 40 timber-shingled guest pavilions tucked along the coast, the resort enjoys a contemporary layout and design, open to the sights and sounds of the crystal clear turquoise sea.
Rosewood Little Dix Bay is situated on one of the Caribbean’s finest shorelines – beyond a colourful barrier reef, where gentle blue waters meet the powder-white sands of a stunning half-mile crescent beach. The luxury Caribbean resort is surrounded by the untamed wilderness of Virgin Gorda, an island of volcanic origin featuring rugged hills, quiet coves and unspoiled beaches. The iconic property was founded by Laurance S. Rockefeller over 50 years ago. The resort recently reopened following a complete redesign of the property’s glamorous guestrooms and suites, its three restaurants and overall enhancements to the resort’s gardens and landscaping.
Nestled within more than 2,170 acres of pristine Caribbean jungle, Amanera overlooks the ocean from Playa Grande, whose golden sands make it one of the region’s most beautiful beaches. Presenting the first fully-integrated Aman Golf Course, the resort is located alongside the lauded fairways and greens of Playa Grande. Amanera has 25 free-standing Casitas, that all come with ocean views from an expansive terrace, as well as a private garden and biodiverse roof that seamlessly blends with its surroundings. Thirteen casitas have a private pool.