St Kitts – Belle Mont Farm
Complete relaxation with the wow factor – that’s the promise at Belle Mont Farm, set in the island’s northwest. Life here is epitomised by sea views and individual cottages with private pools; and by the way those same haven-like cottages can be transformed into cinemas each night courtesy of pull-down screens and the latest films. Main restaurant The Great House utilises produce from the titular, sustainable farm, while Farm Table Dinners are open-air, organic meals prepared by chefs in front of a communal table.
You’ve also got access to an adjacent, Ian Woosnam-designed champion golf course, beach and beach bar, plus repeatedly great views. But do try and leave: St Kitts has sights galore, headed by a a 17th-century British fort atop Brimstone Hill, and there’s lots of watersports and easy hiking in old plantation hills. We also recommend driving along the coast to busy capital Basseterre, one of the Caribbean’s oldest towns, and perhaps watching a game of cricket at Warner Park. Look out for The Circus, modelled on our own Piccadilly Circus but with an added clocktower, then join locals ‘liming’ – essentially doing nothing – on the grass of Independence Square.
Immerse yourself for three days, and then move on to somewhere completely different…
Antigua – Hodges Bay
Much of Antigua is about the big-hitting sights that wow you at every turn. Sprawling forts, with cannons still intact, guard the island and the harbour, today filled with mega yachts and tall sailing boats. The harbour is also an atmospheric UNESCO protected naval dockyard.
The island is edged with an astounding 365 beaches, yes one for every day of the year, and the lush interior is hiking and zip-lining paradise. But with the warm breeze that rustles through the palm trees, Caribbean colours catch your eye and suddenly there’s time for a drink at rum shack or hammock-time on the beach.
Beside one sandy stretch sits our accommodation pick. When it debuted late last year, Hodges Bay became the first new luxury hotel to open on Antigua in a long while, generating much excitement. The novelty doesn’t stop here: touches like colourful cushions and pale-wood grilles deliver a contemporary, chic aesthetic pairing Caribbean flair with clean Scandi minimalism. There’s also an unusually strong emphasis on wellness via the four-room spa.
Choice is another theme. Guests can decide between a range of rooms, suites, apartments or villas of various sizes. A tapas lounge and its jazzy cocktails stand out among the three restaurants, and one of two swimming pools is sedately reserved for adults. No screaming there, nor at the scattering of beautiful cabanas which can be hired for romantic day-use.
The resort’s northeastern position puts guests near to Antigua’s best restaurants and golf courses. And indeed to Shirley Heights – a must-visit restored military lookout offering harbour views, hiking trails and a bar-restaurant. Sunday’s are the best day to visit as a steel band plays from mid-afternoon.
Trip idea / Antigua
A Caribbean Contrast
Why visit one Caribbean Island, when you could visit two?