virtuoso global July 2018 Why We Love Four Seasons in the Caribbean

Why We Love Four Seasons in the Caribbean

Four Seasons Resort Anguilla.
Four Seasons Resort Anguilla.
The Caribbean connotes easy-breezy, getaway speedy. But service in the laid-back islands can be less than anticipatory. Which is where Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts comes in: the promise of relaxing escapes in knockout destinations with the assurance of read-your-mind attention.

“Their resorts all have a sense of place that reflects that island or locale,” says Martha Gaughen, a Virtuoso advisor based in Atlanta. “Worldwide, Four Seasons delivers a high level of service and attention to detail. You don’t have a bad apple anywhere that can spoil the bunch.”

Four Seasons’ three-property portfolio in the region provides a flavor for every taste, from the glamorous enclave of The Ocean Club in the bustling Bahamas to the contemporary sophistication of the Four Seasons Resort Anguilla on a beach-lover’s isle to the timeless Four Seasons Resort Nevis on a mountainous boutique island.

“Right now, if someone wants to do a circuit in the Caribbean, you can really have an amazing experience island-hopping,” says Gaughen.

Last year’s hurricane season was tough on the region. But this year is comeback time, as islands have recovered and properties have been rebuilt. Psst – you might even have a beach to yourself.

For their part, Four Seasons’ Caribbean properties stay vital through continual renewal, never more so than this coming winter.

Timeless: Four Seasons Resort Nevis

You can drive around Nevis, the baby of the dual island nation Saint Kitts and Nevis, in less than an hour. Its somewhat removed location – most guests take the Four Seasons’ boat from the airport in Saint Kitts to reach Nevis – is essential to its untrammeled, old Caribbean appeal, backdropped by volcanic Mount Nevis at the center of the island.

“Nevis is the true Caribbean,” says Judy Stein, a New York-based Virtuoso advisor. “The resort is perfect for families, with lots of activities, and it’s great for golfers.”

When its full-scale renovation is completed by December, the Four Seasons Nevis will debut 189 rooms redecorated in airy, nature-inspired motifs, from botanical-print wallpaper to furniture textiles featuring the island’s iconic green vervet monkeys. A new Mediterranean-focused restaurant, EsQuilina, will offer a crudo bar and a chef’s table where diners can interact with the cooks. Mixologists at the new rum-centric The Crowned Monkey Rhum Bar will guide tasting tours.

Amenities abound on the 350-acre compound, including a Robert Trent Jones II 18-hole golf course, 10 tennis courts, and a forget-the-time spa with outdoor therapy pools and treatment rooms in gingerbread-trimmed cottages.
“Four Seasons Nevis is a country club on a beach,” says Lisa Cohen, a Virtuoso advisor based in New York. “Think classy and elegant but low-key.”

Glamorous: The Ocean Club, A Four Seasons Resort
Nassau Paradise Island, The Bahamas

At its 1962 opening, The Ocean Club drew a who’s who of famous folks, from Zsa Zsa Gabor to William Randolph Hearst. When James Bond (aka Daniel Craig) needed a swim and a round of poker, he found both – and a martini, shaken, not stirred – at the celebrity hideaway on Paradise Island during the 2006 filming of Casino Royale.

Now the 107-room resort, which joined the Four Seasons portfolio last winter, begins a new chapter on its five-mile stretch of white-sand beach.

“The Ocean Club offers old-world style with the Bahamian colonial experience expressed in the decor,” says Stein. “It’s tranquil and peaceful and intimate, good for people who want a more mellow, chill ambience.”

That’s an appealing vibe on an island best known for a massive water park resort. With the Four Seasons’ celebrated Kids for All Seasons program new to the resort, families have the best of both the nearby water park and children’s activities on-site.

The terraced Versailles Gardens, featuring the imported twelfth-century remains of an Augustine cloister, remain a unique attraction, particularly as a backdrop to weddings. The spa extends the garden theme with Balinese-style treatment villas and outdoor baths.

“The Ocean Club makes parents happy,” says Gaughen. Like the other Four Seasons resorts, she adds, “it’s set up so the family activities don’t disturb the adult elements.”

Modern Sophistication: Four Seasons Resort Anguilla

The contemporary-chic Four Seasons Resort Anguilla withstood Hurricane Irma last fall and reopened in the spring with not just a spruce-up and a warm welcome, but with a real sense of purpose. The largest hospitality employer on the island, the resort embraced its leadership role and encouraged staff and visitors to get involved with volunteer efforts to distribute food, water, and other essentials through Anguilla Stronger.

Volunteering is still a weekly activity at the 181-room resort. But as the island recovers, the concierge staff is again recommending catching the island’s iconic boat races, dining around on arguably the foodiest of the Caribbean islands, and sampling sunset rum punches at the Half Shell Beach Bar.

“The Four Seasons Anguilla has a chic aesthetic, with beautiful clean lines and modern contemporary decor,” says Stein. “The beach is a ten, they have a gorgeous spa, and the choice of accommodation options is really the best in its class.”

That variety of room types, from studio suites to villas as large as five bedrooms, draws a range of travelers who share one thing: a love of the beach.

Cohen agrees: “It’s a sexy, cool property that draws a sophisticated crowd, from multigenerational families to honeymooners and even girlfriend groups.”

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