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Beautifully boutique Caribbean hotels

Hannah Kent

These authentic hotels make for a truly heart-warming stay.

A stay at a boutique hotel, of which there is a wide selection across the Caribbean, allows guests to witness island life from a more genuine, individual perspective. Many properties have been lovingly and sympathetically developed with consideration for the local environment, by caring owners, employing local tradespeople, who have invested their lives in the Caribbean.

Beautifully boutique properties

Beautifully boutique properties tend to be small and intimate with wonderful personal service and the welcoming ambiance of a private home. They display a charmingly individual approach to design and décor. There are decks with hammocks and rocking chairs, beautiful gardens and spectacular views. Guests often establish friendships with hospitable staff and owners.

Acclaimed dining

In a sleepy fishing community on Barbados’ northwest coast, homely Little Good Harbour is an owner-run hideaway with personable service. Charming cottage suites offer full kitchen facilities. There are two pretty pools, a small spa, and the outstanding seafood of the highly acclaimed Fish Pot restaurant. Water taxis run coastal and turtle watching tours. Hire a car to explore more of the island. Good to know: Larger suites are popular with independent-minded families, and Fish Pot offers a children’s menu.

Unsurpassed views

St Lucia’s exceptional adult only Ladera Resort is perched high above the sea and affords spectacular views of the Piton Mountains. This sublime retreat prides itself on award-winning cuisine, pampering spa treatments and impeccable service. Rainforest style suites come with plunge pool and a striking architectural feature: the removal of one wall leaves them open to the elements allowing enchantingly panoramic vistas whilst maintaining total privacy. Good to know: Pack binoculars to view stellar constellations and varied birdlife including resident hummingbirds.

Historic charm

Beautifully boutique Montpelier Plantation & Beach has 19 rooms and suites. Located on Nevis it matches sophistication with historic charm. Occupying a former sugar plantation where Horatio Nelson married Fanny Nisbet. There is tantalising dining in a converted sugar mill, a well-stocked wine cellar, yoga and a bijou spa. Good to know: In a hotel full of romantic charm, Restaurant 750 is a particular highlight.

Chic and intimate

Little Good Harbour’s sister hotel, The Atlantis Historic Inn, occupies the pebbly shore of Tent Bay on Barbados’ rugged east coast. This chic, stylish property, with outdoor pool, has just nine rooms and suites. It’s relaxed, cheerful and intimate. Sea conditions favour surfing and windsurfing over sea swimming on this part of the island. Good to know: There are several local attractions a short drive from the property.

Beautiful beach, unspoiled setting

On tranquil Bequia, family-run Bequia Beach Hotel blends understated luxury and elegance with authentic charm in an unspoiled setting. There’s a fabulous stretch  of golden sand, three outdoor pools, superb food, a beach-chic bar and 57 beautifully appointed rooms, suites and villas. Good to know: No Bequia hotel is closer to the beach, and what a beach! Set directly on the soft sands of sugary soft sands of Friendship Beach.

Boutique luxury

Expect superb personal service at family-run The Sandpiper. Immaculate grounds feature two gorgeous pools and tennis courts. Enjoy garden tours, the popular beach bar and fine food. Fifty rooms and suites are elegantly decorated. The Tree Top suites are of note, boasting private plunge pools. Good to know: Home to very fine dining. Families might enjoy the summer school with sailing and swimming lessons.

A tranquil all-inclusive haven

In St Lucia’s La Brelotte Bay, East Winds is an idyllic all-inclusive hideaway bordering a secluded beach. Ideal for couples, it is renowned for its exquisite dining and easy-going ambience. The 12 acres of gardens are home to a cornucopia of vibrant plants, trees and birdlife. Enjoy afternoon teas, picnic hampers, private beach gazebo dining and champagne jazz evenings. Good to know: Tropical garden tours are offered twice weekly as part of the property’s exclusive experiences, and each room comes with an Illustrated Garden Guide.

Seclusion and privacy

In Antigua, The Inn at English Harbour offers beachfront boutique luxury, privacy and seclusion. This refined hotel is a short water taxi ride from Nelson’s Dockyard. There are 28 well-appointed rooms with beach cabanas enjoying direct access to the white sands. For romantic evenings the hilltop restaurant offers fine dining Italian style. Good to know: The hotel operates a complimentary water taxi service to Nelson’s Dockyard.

A hidden gem

In a peaceful beach location, Laluna Boutique Hotel & Villas is one of Grenada’s most romantic hideaways. This intimate hotel has just 16 Balinese cottages, each with veranda and plunge pool. Good to know: A younger clientele enjoy the Asian ambience and Balinese Spa. The hotel’s enchanted forest surprises with art installations.