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The Ultimate Caribbean Hotel Guide*

Ericka McConnell In front of a guest cottage at Kamalame Cay in the Bahamas.

Photo: Ericka McConnell

A room with a view?A state-of-the-art golf course?A family-friendly hotel that the kids (and you) will love?A resort that has it all?Whatever you’re looking for in the Caribbean, there’s a place that’s right for you. T+L’s team of reporters explored every corner of the region—from Bermuda to the Bahamas and beyond. Here, the best in the islands.

Private-Island Resorts

THE BAHAMAS
Kamalame Cay The short ferry ride from Andros reveals nothing of this 96-acre barrier island but thick stands of mangrove trees. Secluded Kamalame is the perfect stage for a Robinson Crusoe fantasy, but with plushier accommodations: 19 villas, each with muslin-draped French doors that open onto three miles of beach. The star of the show is the resort’s year-old spa, hovering on stilts above the sea.

BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS
Peter Island The promise of isolation brings special expectations—all of which are met on this 1,800-acre getaway shared by no more than 104 guests. The staff greets visitors at the airport and escorts them aboard a yacht that takes them to the island; upon arriving, they are allowed to skip check-in and head straight for any of the five gleaming white beaches.

THE GRENADINES
Petit St. Vincent Resort If absolute privacy is your wish, this 113-acre scoop of sand provides it, with 22 wood-and-stone cottages—some perched spectacularly on a bluff, others strung along the waterfront. Telephones?You must be thinking of someplace else. Guests communicate their wants and needs by hoisting a flag outside their digs.

Secluded Hideaways

BARBUDA
Beach House The resort’s unofficial motto is Do not disturb. It’s easy to play castaway here, on this low-lying coral island near Antigua where your only company is the seabirds that inhabit the pink-sand dunes along the empty shoreline. The 21 white-on-white guest rooms, all with private teak decks, face a saltwater pool and the surf beyond.

MARTINIQUE
Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa At this 50-suite escape on Martinique’s verdant eastern coast, a Guerlain spa and Creole fusion cuisine add Gallic spice to a modern plantation-style hotel decorated with vibrant madras fabrics. Take your cue from the French clientele and touch up your tan Euro-style (read: topless). After sunset, dance to steel drums in the lounge.

Undiscovered Retreats

THE BAHAMAS
Tiamo Resort Even people who pride themselves on knowing the Caribbean have never heard of, let alone been to, Tiamo, on South Andros Island, accessible only by boat. The eco-resort has just 11 waterfront bungalows and relies happily and efficiently on the sun for all of its power—and on green-minded guests to dispose of some of the recyclables they generate. The birding and bonefishing are first-rate.

GRENADA
Petit Bacaye Far removed from the tourist crush of Grand Anse is Petit Bacaye, a beachfront country-cottage hotel in Grenada’s rural St. David’s parish. The six thatched-roof cabanas, hidden amid banana trees and giant flowering ginger, have bamboo-and-mahogany beds, tropical-hardwood floors, and private verandas perfect for sipping homemade lemongrass lemonade as you watch the sun set.

GUADELOUPE
Hôtel Auberge Les Petits Saints Terre-de-Haute, the largest of the French-speaking islands of Les Saintes, off the coast of Guadeloupe, is an often overlooked, barefoot version of St. Bart’s, dotted with small hotels where the doors are still left unlocked. The top choice is the intimate Auberge Les Petits Saints, with guest rooms filled with antiques (they’re for sale) and one of the isle’s best restaurants (the grilled fish with vanilla sauce is a standout).

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