Five Best Caribbean Hideaways

Rhiannon Batten finds that in a world of plantations and private beaches, small really is beautiful


Jake's Jamaica

Jake's, with its famously laidback vibe, is part of Chris Blackwell's Island Outpost group. It opened in 1993 with just two rooms. Today, each of the 24 pastel-coloured villas has been furnished with local materials - some feature al fresco bathrooms and exotic day beds - and each is endearingly named: Sea Puss, Starfish and Sweet Lip are among those with ocean views. The design has a Moroccan feel, but the atmosphere is distinctly Caribbean. There are no TVs; instead CDs are supplied, there's a saltwater pool and the restaurant offers cookery lessons.

Jake's, Calabash Bay, Treasure Beach, St Elizabeth, Jamaica (00 800 688 76781; www.islandoutpost.com). Doubles from $148 (£106), room only.

Le Sereno, St-Barthélemy

This exclusive retreat has just re-opened following an extensive overhaul by the French interior designer Christian Liaigre. Its sleek suites and villas are practically on the beach and, unlike some of the more garish Caribbean hotels, this one has stylishly minimal taupe and cream furnishings. As well as plasma screen TVs and iPods, rooms come with private gardens and access to a cool freshwater pool. The USP? It's set on a shimmering turquoise cove listed by the Discovery Channel as one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in the world (even if it is rather unromantically called "Grand-Cul-de-Sac").

Le Sereno, Grand Cul-de-Sac, Saint-Barthélemy (00 590 590 298 300; www.lesereno.com). Suites start at €450 (£305), room only.

The Cotton House, Mustique

This showbiz stalwart on the small Grenadine island of Mustique is the Carol Vorderman of the Caribbean hotel world. A few years ago it seemed jaded and, well, a little frumpy, but after a thorough redesign it has made a dramatic comeback. Created from an 18th-century coral warehouse and sugar mill, the hotel underwent a total renovation last year under the direction of owner Grace Leo-Andrieu and now provides accommodation that is as classy as its location with simple but characterful furnishings, a glamourous boutique, several restaurants and a spa.

The Cotton House, Mustique, St Vincent and the Grenadines (00 1 784 456 4777; www.cottonhouse.net). Doubles start at $643 (£357), including breakfast.

Montpelier Plantation Inn, Nevis

This award-winning, family-owned hotel on Nevis has 17 rooms, all of them newly renovated in simple but luxurious style, with tropical wood furniture, crisp linen and fresh flowers. Few guests come for the decor, though. With its private beach and spectacular island setting to explore (if you're feeling energetic, local ecologists will guide you on hikes) it's unlikely you'll spend much time sleeping. A popular honeymoon destination, the hotel's romantic credentials are long-established - Lord Nelson and Fanny Nisbet were married here.

Montpelier Plantation Inn, Nevis (00 1 869 469 3462; www.montpeliernevis.com). Doubles start at $336 (£187), including breakfast and afternoon tea.

The Landing Bahamas

It may be on the other side of Harbour Island from the famous Pink Sands beach, and lack a swimming pool, but this period-style hotel has plenty of harbour-side charm to tempt punters away from the competition. The seven bedrooms - designed by Lord Mountbatten's grand-daughter, India Hicks - are large and airy with antique furniture, clean white walls, wooden floors and, unusually for the Caribbean, an appealingly shabby chic feel. With its cosy red bar and restaurant and breezy upstairs library, The Landing has the air of a bohemian private home rather than a hotel.

The Landing, Harbour Island, Bahamas (00 1 242 333 2707;

www.harbourislandlanding.com). Double rooms start at $249 (£138), including breakfast.

News
Russia Today’s new UK channel began broadcasting yesterday. Discussions so far have included why Britons see Russia as ‘the bad guy’
tv

New UK station Russia Today gives a very bizarre view of Britain

News
John Moore inspired this Coca Cola Christmas advert
people

News
people

Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy

Arts and Entertainment
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films
books

New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
A Rutherford Raiders shirt with the PornHub sponsorship
football

Arts and Entertainment
Charlie Sheen said he would
tv

Charlie Sheen could be set to revive his role as a hedonistic womaniser

Arts and Entertainment
Daniel Radcliffe gives a strong performance in Horns
film

Review: Alexandre Aja's film is a Twin Peaks-style mystery

News
Apple CEO Timothy Cook
people
News
i100
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Life and Style
Jamie Oliver’s version of Jollof rice led thousands of people to post angry comments on his website
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Vividly drawn: Timothy Spall in Mike Leigh’s ‘Mr Turner’
film

Review: Mike Leigh's biopic is a rambling, rich character study

Arts and Entertainment
glastonbury
Arts and Entertainment
Shelley Duvall stars in Stanley Kubrick's The Shining
film
Arts and Entertainment
Shock of the news: Jake Gyllenhaal in ‘Nightcrawler’
film
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Sales Manager - Commercial Cable & Wire - UK

    £60,000 - £75,000: Recruitment Genius: As a top tier supplier to the major Aer...

    ORNC Visitor Experience Volunteer

    Unpaid voluntary work: Old Royal Naval College: Join our team of friendly volu...

    Junior Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    IT Systems Analyst / Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    Day In a Page

    The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

    The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

    Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
    The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

    Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

    Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
    Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

    Fall of the Berlin Wall

    It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
    Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

    What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

    Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
    A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

    Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

    Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
    Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

    'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

    A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

    Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

    The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
    Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

    Paul Scholes column

    Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
    Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

    Frank Warren column

    Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
    Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

    Adrian Heath's American dream...

    Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
    Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

    Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

    Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
    Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

    A Syrian general speaks

    A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
    ‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

    ‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

    Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
    Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

    Fall of the Berlin Wall

    History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
    How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

    Turn your mobile phone into easy money

    There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes