GEORGIA, United States, Friday March 31, 2017 – The Caribbean has once again done us proud in a list of top vacation spots, this time copping five out of 15 recommendations on CNN’s World’s Most Stunning Island Hotels picks.
Anguilla emerged the star turn with two hotels listed – Cap Juluca, and CeBlue Villas & Beach Resort – making it the only country to secure more than one place on the list, which was compiled by travel writer Krisanne Fordham.
Also flying the flag for the Caribbean were Dominica’s Secret Bay, Jamaica’s Cliff Hotel, and Belmond La Samanna in St Martin.
Here’s what Fordham had to say:
Cap Juluca (Anguilla)
This intimate boutique hotel, situated on Anguilla’s turquoise-blue Maundays Bay, is a Caribbean classic.
Its domed, Moorish-style villas are cheerful and stylish, decorated with colorful batiks, rattan furniture and coconut wood accents. Though the vibe is beachy and relaxed, rooms abound with posh amenities like plush Frette linens and Hermès bath products.
Added bonus: Every room is beachfront and has an ocean-facing patio.
CéBlue Villas and Beach Resort (Anguilla)
Opened in 2014, CéBlue is one of Anguilla’s newest and most luxurious resorts. It has just eight eco-friendly hideaways built into the verdant hills above tranquil Crocus Bay on the island’s northwest coast.
Lodgings are sleek and modern, and equipped with large saltwater swimming pools, 3,000-square-foot sun decks and frangipani-filled private gardens.
Thanks to the resort’s linear, terraced design, guests can enjoy panoramic views over the Caribbean Sea from every single window.
Secret Bay (Dominica)
Perched on a clifftop on the island of Dominica, this uber-luxe hotel remains relatively undiscovered compared to other Caribbean resorts of the same caliber. But therein lies its charm: Unlike the crowded, all-inclusive resorts of Bermuda and the Bahamas, this low-key boutique property feels like your own secret Caribbean hideaway.
Its eight treehouse-style bungalows are hidden amidst thick, jungle-like foliage and equipped with so many luxe features — hammocks, plunge pools, sundecks, personal libraries — that you won’t ever want to leave. But you must, if only to walk down to its two stunning beaches or watch the sun set over the Caribbean Ocean from the gorgeous Vetiver Sunset Deck.
The Cliff Hotel (Jamaica)
Though it sits directly on the ocean, this new boutique hotel isn’t your typical beach getaway.
For starters, there’s no beach: True to its name, the hotel is perched on low, jagged cliffs that jut out dramatically onto the ocean. Unlike its colourful, kitschy neighbours, The Cliff opts for a neutral-toned, minimalist vibe that allows its striking natural setting to steal the show.
Still, its 33 rooms are as luxe as they come, outfitted with stylish hammocks, roomy balconies and, in some cases, private plunge pools.
Belmond La Samanna (St Martin)
Easily the best resort in St Martin, La Samanna brings tranquility and a touch of glamour to a fairly tourist-clogged island. Its 83 lavish rooms and eight Mediterranean-style villas are hidden behind 55 lush tropical acres on the unspoilt shores of Baie Longue.
Property highlights include two infinity pools, a heavenly spa, two French-Caribbean restaurants and a 12,000-bottle wine cave. But what you’re really here for is the Moroccan-themed beach bar, which serves up potent cocktails and killer ocean views to match.
The Caribbean hotels held their own among properties in Fiji, Mozambique, Australia, Sicily, Hawaii, Maldives, Phuket, Greece, Indonesia, and Seychelles.