What's So Sexy About the Caribbean?

Romantic Resorts: Do Not Disturb
By Ian Keown
Cap Juluca Pool Villa, Anguilla
Six of Cap Juluca's luxurious Moorish-style villas have private pools (courtesy, Cap Juluca)

Let's face it: Some Caribbean inns and resorts have such unabashed sex appeal, you can't wait to get rid of the bellman showing you how to use the phone and safe. Every loving couple bound for a week of Monty Python's classic euphemism — "nudge-nudge, wink-wink" — will certainly find fulfillment in the varied enticements of the region's most stimulating romantic hideaways.

Hard-core romantics will find no shortage of four-poster beds swathed in clouds of white muslin at Strawberry Hill on Jamaica, Laluna on Grenada and the Cotton House Hotel on Mustique, where seamstresses have embellished the netting with dainty rosettes. The Eden Rock on St. Barts claims to have one of the largest beds in the Caribbean in its Garbo Suite, a hillside love nest dominated by an 8-foot-high, studded white-leather headboard surrounded by décor that evokes over-the-top Thirties Hollywood.

Balinese daybeds have swarmed the Caribbean in recent years, clustered on beaches, around bars and pools and, more discreetly, on verandas. They're cozy for lounging in style, and some sportif guests find them suitable for pre-match warm-ups. You'll find these oversized playpens in suites at Parrot Cay in the Turks and Caicos, Laluna on Grenada and Carlisle Bay on Antigua.

The folks who design today's resort bathrooms seem to be brazenly encouraging alternatives to mere ablutions — how else to explain Cap Juluca's double tubs with headrests and glass walls leading to secluded patios? And given that balmy, caressing Caribbean climate, who can resist the appeal of bathing on a garden patio, serenaded by bird song and screened from the outside world by bougainvillea-draped fences? Plein-air bathing is on tap at Biras Creek on Virgin Gorda, Stonefield Estates and Ti Kaye on St.Lucia, Hermitage Beach on Antigua and Young Island off St. Vincent.

Is there anything more conducive to canoodling than a private en-suite pool? Take the plunge at the Gauguin Suites at Galley Bay on Antigua, the Pool Suites at Spice Island Beach Resort on Grenada, the blissful dune suites at Parrot Cay or Young Island's hilltop cottages.

The Caribbean's distinctive Colonial-era plantations are magic carpets that transport lovers back to a gracious, slow-paced, flower-decked world. The sister islands of St.Kitts and Nevis are blessed with eight such plantation inns: Golden Rock (Nevis) and Rawlins Plantation (St. Kitts) are distinguished by their freestanding (and soundproof) Honeymoon Suites fashioned from the native-stone bases of former windmills; Ottley's (St. Kitts) puts a 21st-century spin on plantation chic with Jacuzzis and plunge pools.

Some hosts go an extra step to create that special ambience. At The Caves in Negril, couples can book a private cliff-side grotto for watching the sunset — from a stone hot tub ringed with candles and fresh flowers. At Cap Juluca and Strawberry Hill, turndown service means turning down not just the bed, but the lights — then lighting scented candles to set the scene for … well … nudge-nudge, wink-wink.

Published: 12 Feb 2009 | Last Updated: 1 Apr 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

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