T+L checks in to one of the region’s hottest new hotels, the Park Hyatt St. Kitts.
Funnily enough, the biggest draw at St. Kitts's Park Hyatt resort, which opened last November in Christophe Harbour along the southeastern peninsula, might be sister island Nevis. That's because wherever you are at the beachfront property, the mist-crowned peak of Nevis's iconic volcano, just three miles away, draws the eye. The resort's sense of openness, of being connected with nature, starts at the entrance, with its reflecting pools punctuated by water lilies. It continues in the open-plan Living Room, a light-filled space with floor-to-ceiling ocean-view windows, a whimsical wall of straw hats, and armchairs and coffee tables instead of a traditional front desk. Within minutes, I felt myself downshift to island time.
The 126 rooms and suites are cheerful and bright, with ivory wood-paneled walls, a cream-and-taupe color scheme with cheery pops of blue and red, and not even a hint of the stuffy colonial style still so prevalent across the region. My favorite category: the Nevis Peak suites, which feature outdoor living rooms and private plunge pools. They're great for couples.
All three restaurants on the property serve excellent, locally sourced food. The standout is the adults-only Stone Barn, where the executive chef, Pankaj Bisht, turns out sophisticated, unfussy dishes. The mahi-mahi crudo is embellished with tiny edible viola flowers, and the chermoula-spiced prawn with piquillo yogurt, toasted macadamias, and cilantro melds international flavors.
Whether I was lounging at either of two main pools or on Banana Bay — which offers additional views of Nevis Peak — I was never bored. At the Miraval Life in Balance Spa, the massages and scrubs use local salt, volcanic stone, and black sand, and a reproduction of a stone sugar mill is a site for meditation and yoga. When I wanted to get off the property, I took one of the island tours, or "journeys" — including rain-forest excursions and a visit to Brimstone Hill Fortress — for an introduction to Kittitian history and culture. park.hyatt.com; doubles from $450.