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THE

SANDALS OF TOMORROW. ®

SETTING A NEW STANDARD IN ALL-

A first-class destination now has a world-class resort to match. Introducing Sandals LaSource Grenada, an all-inclusive luxury experience on the magical and romantic “Spice Island.” Here Sandals has infused the exotic feeling of the South Seas with a bold, contemporary design that goes beyond the unexpected. You will be amazed by pools that float in the sky, living rooms that float inside pools, and Tranquility Soaking Tubs that rest upon oceanview balconies. Meanwhile, nine exemplary restaurants, including the Caribbean’s finest steakhouse, will impress with savory dishes prepared by worldly chefs. These are just a few of the innovative new standards in luxury you can expect from the Sandals of tomorrow, today.

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BEYOND THE UNEXPECTED

For more information, call

1.800.SANDALS SANDALS.COM A Caribbean Family-Owned Company Renderings are computer generated and representational only. Sandals® is a registered trademark. Unique Vacations, Inc. is the affiliate of the worldwide representative of Sandals Resorts.


TODAY.

INCLUSIVE LUXURY

South Seas Millionaire 1 Bdrm. Butler Suite w/Infinity Edge Pool Sanctuary

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FLORIDA

1

EASIEST FLIGHT PLAN Get to the airport, man! Our nonstop guide shows you how to simplify your next getaway and practically land in the sand. P. 12

3

WAIST-HIGH ADVENTURES Our favorite underwater sites require only a swimsuit, a snorkel mask and the ability to oat in 4 feet of water. See that monstrous ... thing? Go ahead, you can pet it. P. 33

2

TROPICAL HEAT Where should you go to heat yourself from the inside out? Start with a local hot sauce that uses peppers 40 times hotter than jalapenos. P. 20


WELCOME (BACK) TO THE

CARIBBEAN

We missed you. While you were gone, we went ahead and started a little to-do list, just for fun. We ended up with 365 items. It seemed to take a year to compile. The question now is, how long will it take to do it all?

THE MASTER PLAN It’s about time to pick an outfit (if that’s what you want to call a string of beads) for the Caribbean’s biggest event. Carnival starts in February ... of 2015. P. 60

4

ILLUSTRATION BY IKER AYESTARAN

ISLAND CRAWLING A sampling of why we cruise: Key lime cupcakes before bed, skydiving simulators and ice skating. Oh yeah, visiting places too. P. 24


Excellence in Consulting and Rentals Since 1985

Exclusive collection of private stafed villas Named the Top Villa Rental Specialist in Jamaica Condé Nast Traveler 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013

Key contributors sarah Greaves-Gabbadon

It’s been a while since Sarah GreavesGabbadon took her frst fight, remarking to her mother “the clouds are upside down!” Today, Jamaicanborn Gabbadon, known on Twitter as @JetSetSarah, is a Caribbean expert and shopping guru who “wants to share her adventures with everyone who appreciates my kind of crazy.”

ann vanderhoof

A contributor to CT+L’s sister publication Islands, and the author of two Caribbean travel books, Vanderhoof is often sailing the Caribbean with her husband on their 42-foot boat, Receta.

brooke morton

She once bought a one-way plane ticket to St. Croix to spend a year diving. Her travel motto: “It’s more fun to say yes, but have a back-up plan.” Follow her in Islands, Delta SKY and Scuba Diving.

zach stovall

jamaicavillas.com 301.229.4300

linda@jamaicavillas.com

Longtime CT+L photographer and writer Zach Stovall has been called “mon” in more than 20 dialects. But even after visiting the region countless times, he’s still learning. “Sometimes I still have to remind myself which islands are leeward and which are windward,” he says. “Because they all seem pretty windy to me.”

kaci hamilton

Self-diagnosed “travel addict” Kaci Hamilton has ventured to 40 countries on fve continents, and called Belgium, Alaska, China, New Orleans and Colombia home. Her current home: New York City, where speaking three languages comes in handy.


Dreams ARE MADE OF THIS...

Our Unlimited-Luxury ® destinations feature ocean front settings, elegant accommodations, great meals and top-shelf spirits whenever you want, endless day and evening activities with a supervised Explorer’s Club for kids plus so much more. Visit DreamsResorts.com for more details. DREAMS CANCUN • DREAMS HUATULCO • DREAMS LA ROMANA • DREAMS LAS MAREAS COSTA RICA (DEC 2014) • DREAMS LOS CABOS • DREAMS PALM BEACH PUNTA CANA DREAMS PUERTO AVENTURAS • DREAMS PUERTO VALLARTA • DREAMS PUNTA CANA • DREAMS RIVIERA CANCUN • DREAMS TULUM • DREAMS VILLAMAGNA NUEVO VALLARTA


ExplorE tahiti

on m/s Paul GauGuin with islands magazine

The UlTimaTe CrUise Where: Tahiti & the society islands When: sept. 27-Oct. 4, 2014 (7 nights!) host: m/s Paul Gauguin > sail with Islands staff photographers. > enjoy daily photo lessons with the pros. > Take your best travel photos on a trip into paradise. rates start at $4,995 per person (including airfare from Los Angeles).

Go to: islands.com/ExpEditions


SHAWN BEAN, Editorial Director

ZACH STOVALL

Twenty-seven Caribbean countries. Visits to more than 64 islands within them. Seventeen trips to Jamaica. Fifteen to Puerto Rico. Those are the travel statistics for the team that produced the special issue you’re holding. Oh wait. My bad. Those are the stats for one dude. One. That dude is our senior staf photographer and writer Zach Stovall. He’s only one of the individuals responsible for the most ambitious issue in Caribbean Travel + Life’s history. And these journalists aren’t reporting from the guestroom balcony or nearest Wi-Fi signal. They’re out there. Like way out there. Zach has snapped photos hanging from parasails and helicopters (like the one of Barbuda you’re looking at now). Jon Whittle landed on St. Barth’s teensy-weensy runway facing down a hurricane. Waiting in line at airport security? Try waiting for the 6-foot boa constrictor blocking the path to your rainforest dwelling in Dominica, as Ann Vanderhoof did. Eddy Patricelli’s hair was so blond from living part-time in Aruba that he was regularly congratulated for winning the Billy Idol lookalike competition. Brooke Morton has mingled with whale sharks of the coast of Mexico (p. 56), and tried bush medicines to cure her cold (p. 62). Only a team like this can bring you 365 things to see and do in the Caribbean. (Go ahead. Count them.) They’re exactly who you want inspired, informed travel ideas from. Because I assure you, Google hasn’t picked leaves of a tree in Great Exuma to treat a runny nose. We hope CT+L 365 inspires you as much as it challenged, frightened and exhilarated us while creating it. See you on the beach.


instant indulgence from ahhh to zzzz Immerse your senses as we indulge your desires. With sapphire blue swimming pools, white powdery beaches and ethereal surroundings, each detail at Le Blanc Spa Resort is designed to enhance your experience, from beginning to end.

With a world-class spa as its centerpiece, you’ll never be too far from total serenity. And since it’s truly all-inclusive, all you have to worry about is choosing which sense we should pamper first.

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editorial   director

Shawn Bean

group publisher

br and director

Laura Walker

laura.walker@bonniercorp.com

shawn.bean@bonniercorp.com

Eddy Patricelli

eddy.patricelli@bonniercorp.com

digital content director digital editor copy editor contributing writers & photogr aphers managing editor

editorial Audrey St. Clair Steve Spears Cami Webb Kathleen M. Kiely Sarah Greaves-Gabbadon, Kaci Hamilton, Erika Hueneke, Jen Judge, Holly Kapherr, Brooke Morton, Cynthia Psarakis, Robert Stephens, Ann Vanderhoof art

AMSTERDAM MANOR BEACH RESORT Warm smiles, friendly staff, spacious fully-equipped studios & suites, fine dining and great amenities.

1-800-969-2310 www.AmsterdamManor.com

Vicky Hodges photo editor Kim Kuhn senior staff photogr aphers Zach Stovall, Jon Whittle art director

caribbe an / mexico / europe mexico / hondur a s / south pacific / hawaii

caribbe an vill a s / cl a ssifieds advertising services manager e a stern united states

Matt Hickman David Butler Jerry Pomales Haley Bischof Lindsay Gigler

design services director gr aphic artists human resources director

Michelle Doster Alison Klein Suzanne Oberholtzer Julia Arana, Willy Frei, Jennifer Remias, Aubrey Wilson Sheri Bass

vp, digital oper ations

production director

production manager

BLUE RESIDENCES

800-728-4910 www.bluearuba.com

Valerie Aguilar, 805-452-0679; valerie.aguilar@bonniercorp.com Jackie D’Antonio, 407-571-4718; jackie.dantonio@bonniercorp.com Julie Kittredge, 813-877-6959; julie.kittredge@bonniercorp.com Leslie Parker, 407-571-4985; leslie.parker@bonniercorp.com Krys Pettit, 407-571-4534; krys.pettit@bonniercorp.com

cre ative director group marketing director marketing manager

vp, director of br and str ategies

This luxury condo resort offers 124 spacious ocean-view rooms, suites and penthouses, most with fully equipped kitchens. Amenities include an upscale restaurant and bar, infinity pool, spa and fitness center.

advertising

Carol Johnson, Publisher, 908-221-9122; carol.johnson@bonniercorp.com

isl a n ds is a di v isi o n o f

Jonas Bonnier Dave Freygang Eric Zinczenko David Ritchie Nancy Coalter Lisa Earlywine Leslie Glenn Sean Holzman Bruce Miller Dean Turcol Jeremy Thompson

b us i n e s s a n d e d i to r i a l o f f i ce s

Chairman Chief executive Ofcer executive Vice president Chief Content Ofcer Chief Financial Ofcer Chief Operating Ofcer Chief Human Resource Ofcer Chief Brand Development Ofcer Vice president, Consumer Marketing Vice president, Corporate Communications General Counsel

460 N. Orlando Ave., Suite 200, Winter Park, FL 32789

standard Mail paid at Winter park, FL For content reprints, reuse and permissions, e-mail reprints@bonniercorp.com. Occasionally, we make portions of our subscriber list available to carefully screened companies that ofer products and services we think may be of interest to you. if you do not want to receive these ofers, please advise us at 800-250-1523. We cannot be responsible for the care or return of unsolicited materials.

RADISSON ARUBA RESORT, CASINO & SPA Discover Your Play Time, Sept. 16-Dec. 21, 2013: Paddleboarding, wine tastings, Tai Chi, fly fishing for Tarpon, Larimar Spa massages, Casino Night, ATV tours, shopping excursions—truly something for everyone.

1-800-333-3333 www.radisson.com/aruba

www.aruba.com

This product is from sustainably managed forests and controlled sources.

Lithography RR Donnelley pRinTeD in usa

Cover, clockwise from top left: Zach Stovall; Life on white/Alamy; Patagonik Works/Alamy; Aurora Photos/Alamy; Jen Judge; Stephen Frink Collection/Alamy; Courtesy Angostura; Zach Stovall; Jon Whittle; Tim Hill/Alamy; Hemis/Alamy


The most sunny days of any island in the Caribbean

Aruba’s white-sand beaches, low humidity, and constant sunshine make it the perfect destination any time of the year. It’s just one reason why Aruba enjoys one of the highest repeat visitation rates in the Caribbean. Plan your happy escape today at aruba.com © 2013 Aruba Tourism Authority


CT+L 365 JANUARY

Sorry, layover. It’s not you — it’s me. The holidays are over, and our NONSTOP-FLIGHT DIRECTORY is just too good to ignore.

To see more nonstop flights from an airport near you, visit islands.com/ nonstopflights.

BLUEGREEN PICTURES/ALAMY

Prepare for Landing


GETTING TO THE CARIBBEAN IS EASIER THAN EVER

MOST FREQUENT ➔

It’s no shock that Puerto Rico is a favored spot (no passport needed, for starters). A total of 96 weekly flights hail from New York’s JFK airport.

1 2

BOSTON

3

CHARLOTTE

4

CHICAGO

7

Barbados

Cancun Cayman

Puerto Rico St. Kitts and Nevis St. Maarten Turks and Caicos USVI Bahamas

Cancun Cayman Jamaica Puerto Rico USVI

Bahamas Belize Jamaica

Cayman

Puerto Rico Turks and Caicos

Bahamas

Belize

Cayman

Curaçao Jamaica

Bonaire Jamaica

Trinidad and Tobago

Antigua

BAHAMAS

8

You’re at cruising altitude for about as long as it takes to go to the bathroom, and there’s not even beverage service. Gate to gate in about an hour.

Saint Lucia

Aruba

Bahamas

DALLAS

5 6

SHORTEST FLIGHT ➔

Bonaire

Aruba Cayman Jamaica Puerto Rico St. Maarten USVI

HOUSTON

MOST SURPRISING ➔

Not many flights to the Caribbean originate in the Midwest. And even fewer travel all the way to St. Thomas, USVI, without stopping. But United does.

Belize Cayman JAMAICA Puerto Rico

MIAMI

On Dec. 19, 2013, Delta launched new service out of Atlanta. The flight operates once daily to Kingston, departing at 10 a.m. and returning at 2 p.m.

Antigua

Bahamas

Puerto Rico

Barbados Grenada St. Kitts and Nevis St. Maarten Trinidad and Tobago Antigua Barbados Belize Cancun Dominican Republic Grenada PUE RTO RICO St. Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia St. Maarten Trinidad and Tobago Turks and Caicos

NEW YORK

NEW FLIGHT ➔

ATLANTA

with brand-new nonstop flights, seasonal additions, increased frequency and more airline carriers. Get on a plane when it’s snowing at home and step of that same plane in 80-degree temps. And not just in go-to’s like Jamaica and Puerto Rico. Flights from Atlanta, Charlotte and Houston deliver you to surprising spots like Bonaire (go windsurfing), Trinidad (food mecca) and St. Kitts (drunken monkeys).

1 HOUR

2 HOURS

3 HOURS

4 HOURS

5 HOURS

6 HOURS

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 0 1 4

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CT+L 365 JANUARY

Talk Like a Local

Thanks to our slang glossary, you can open your mouth and not sound fresh of the tour bus. Lucia — Meddlesome. Small islands are just like small towns; There’s always a busybody.

be a badass and say “coucou.” There may be no actual way to say “coucou” and sound badass, but you get the idea.

into a DR bar and you might find yourself of to the local granny’s dinner table before you know it.

* BACKANAHAN n. (bak-

* GOAT MOUTH n./v. (gote

serrat — To put a jumbee on someone is to set a ghost on him. To be a true islander, you need a little “bad mind” (aka evil thoughts). When that family with the six whiny kids takes all the beach chairs, you know what to say.

ana-han) Belize — Tricky; sly. Was that one shot or two the bartender poured? Keep him in check with a saucy, “I don’t trust your backanahan ways.”

* BRAWTA n. (bra-tah) Jamaica

— Something extra for free. Once you’ve bought 15 T-shirts for all your cousins, ask the vendor, “So, you not giving me likkle brawta?!”

* COOYAH excl. (koo-yah)

Jamaica — Check this out, and usually something ludicrous. You see a whole family piled on a motorbike. Slap your driver and exclaim “cooyah!”

* COUCOU excl. (koo-koo)

French West Indies — Sure, you can say “bonjour.” Or you can

mowt) Dominica — To speak something into being, usually bad. Your negative Nancy beach mates keep saying it looks like rain. Shut them up with “Don’t put your goat mouth on my day!”

* I STRAIGHT exp. (I strate)

Antigua/the Bahamas — I’m all good. Your spouse asks if you’re OK to walk back to the room. Yep, so much so that you skip the verb “to be.”

* MI DUSHI n. (me-doo-she)

Aruba — My precious. Doesn’t this sound so much cooler than “babe” or “hun”?

* QUE LO QUE excl. (kay-lo-kay) Dominican Republic — Forget hola — yell this when you walk

* JUMBEE n. (jum-bee) Mont-

* RAAS excl. (rahs)

Jamaica — Damn; hell. Use it to swear (what the raas is wrong with you?!), to express pleasant surprise (damn girl, you look good to raas).

* TABANCA n. (ta-ban-kah)

Trinidad and Tobago — A lovesick state. We’ll understand if you “have a serious tabanca over T&T after Carnival.” Because it’s that good.

BREDRIN n. (bred-

jrin) Regional — If Bob Marley were around, you would be his bredrin. Peter Tosh too. The term is a Rastafarian bastardization of “brethren” and just about every islander will be happy to be your brother.

SUPERSTOCK/ALAMY

* ANNAFÈ adj. (ana-fay) Saint


THE ISLAND OF TOBAGO....

Just imagine a beautiful, intimate island waiting for you Tobago is a favorite island for many Europeans. They love the laid back culture, the natural beauty of the island, the rainforest and waterfalls, the variety and excitement of all the watersports featured around the island, the famous Nylon Pool with rejuvenating waters, the combination of local cafes and sophisticated restaurants and of course the beautiful ocean and beaches surrounding the island.

Magdalena Grand is Tobago’s premier resort that recently opened and was voted by Fodor’s Travel one of the top ten new Caribbean resorts in 2013 for everyone. The resort features oversized rooms with private balconies and terraces overlooking the ocean, a choice of four restaurants, indoor and outdoor bars, a PGA designed 18-hole golf course, tennis, a PADI 5-star dive center, spa services and salon, three swimming pools, two and one half miles of beach and a daily activities program.

The Island of Tobago is a must on your bucket list but don’t wait too long because the packages we are now offering are incredible. Visit us online for more details.

Reservations : 1-866-353-6222 • Email : Reservations@MagdalenaGrand.com

WWW.MAGDALENAGRAND.COM


CT+L 365

ZACH STOVALL

JANUARY


IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

TIM E TO

Go to the Beach

You’re at home scraping ice from your windshield while this guy stands in the surf on a beach all to himself. Why isn’t that you? The end of December means the end of peak high season, which means solitary sands at spots like Playa Zoni on Culebra, Puerto Rico (pictured). Take one of those nonstop flights you just saw on page 12 to San Juan, a 30-minute flight to Culebra, then a 10-minute car ride, and now that is you.


CT+L 365 FEBRUARY

SEA MOSS ➔ Look for it in Saint Lucia. Rife with stamina-enhancing minerals and vitamins, this concoction, made from dry seaweed boiled and blended with milk and spices, has earned a reputation as “island Viagra.” Bonus: It tastes like the best vanilla milkshake you’ve ever had. MOLE POBLANO ➔ Look for it in Mexico. This rich sauce made with unsweetened dark chocolate and chiles is a one-two libidinous punch. Dark chocolate contains the love drug phenylethylene, and chiles have capsaicin, which stimulates nerve endings. Both trigger an endorphin rush. MANNISH WATER ➔ Look for it in Jamaica. How about some goat soup — including head — with yams, potatoes and dumplings? It’s packed with energy-producing carbs and protein. If you’re planning a destination wedding, here’s an FYI: It’s served to grooms on their wedding night.

Serving up an erotic Stairway to Heaven (right on tray) at Saint Lucia’s Anse Chastanet

Cupid’s Little Helpers In this part of the world, aphrodisiacs grow on trees, cling to rocks, hide in soup pots and wash up on the beach Ñ no prescription needed. perfect b

TIM E TO

MAMAJUANA ➔ Look for it in the Dominican Republic. There are no points for taste. But this mix of twigs, bark and leaves steeped in rum, wine and honey is known as “el para palo” — “lift the stick.” As for staying power: It was used by the Tainos, the isle’s earliest inhabitants. — av

MEET A SPORTS ILLUSTRATED SWIMSUIT MODEL

WITH THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION DUE OUT THIS MONTH, HERE’S AN UNOFFICIAL GUIDE TO WHERE YOUR NEXT CARIBBEAN VACATION AND SI SWIMSUIT PHOTO SHOOT ARE MOST LIKELY TO HOOK UP.

1

2

3

4

5

6

BAHAMAS

MEXICO

BVI

GRENADINES

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

COZUMEL

They’re SI’s favorite Caribbean locale (six shoots, fi ve covers). The bad news: There are 700 islands to choose from. Start with Great Exuma.

18

MANGROVE OYSTER ➔ Look for it in Carriacou. The pint-size relative of the well-known cold-water oyster is best eaten raw on the half-shell. Word on the street is Casanova ate 50 oysters a day. Enough said.

Mexico has hosted seven photo shoots, but not all of ’em bordered the Caribbean Sea. This 1989 cover from Mexico’s Pacific side was the all-time bestseller.

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

Christie Brinkley helped put the BVI on the map in 1980 with her second SI Swimsuit Issue cover. Necker Island and Peter Island would follow after.

These tiny islands host approximately 200,000 visitors per year. And with two shoots under their belt, that’s not a bad swimsuit-modelper-visitor ratio.

Just one photo shoot, in 1987, but it was a biggie, the second of fi ve covers for Elle Macpherson, the most of any SI swimsuit model ever.

This is where it all began. In 1964, the swimsuit issue was a five-page supplement. Today, newsstand sales typically reach 1 million copies. — Eddy Patricelli

ZACH STOVALL

IT ’ S TH E

a

CONCH ➔ Look for it in the Bahamas, especially the crystalline style (the gelatinous protein rod in its digestive tract). The overgrown cousin to escargot should be swallowed raw. It’s renowned for giving men “strong back,” Bahamian for bedroom prowess.


u n f o r g e t ta b l e m o m e n t s

on the water

Call 1.888.514.3669 or visit www.moorings.com/ctl


CT+L 365 FEBRUARY

Feel the Burn

Beaches for Two

S E X Y S T R A N D S T H AT A R E A L L YO U R S .

The only sound: waves caressing the sand. The only footprints: yours. What could be more romantic than a beach à deux? You’re in luck, couples: The Caribbean has more than a couple. Follow a bush trail to the windward (Atlantic) side of Exuma, Bahamas, to Stocking Island, where deserted sand stretches endlessly. Wave-sculpted boulders and dunes bitten away by wind and tide provide intimate nooks for sunbathing and … In Puerto Rico, rays and turtles bask in turquoise shallows of Playa Tortuga, a postcard-ready curve of milk-white sand on uninhabited Isla Culebrita. For your own private spa, stroll to the nearby “Jacuzzis” — sun-warmed tidal pools where wave action keeps the water whirling. Civilization seems far away in Carriacou, but the long, idyllic crescent of Petit Carenage Beach is just a short walk through lush mangrove forest from the road. Pretend you’ve been shipwrecked (the old ship foundered on the reef ofshore helps the fantasy). BYO everything to Mopion Island in the Grenadines, a sea-encircled, powderwhite puf of sand a half-mile of Petit St. Vincent. Nothing here except one thatch-roof palapa, two loungers, stunning 360-degree views, and you. Stocking Island, Bahamas

AT THESE STEAMY DESTINATIONS, MOTHER EARTH HEATS THINGS UP.

THE HOTTEST HOT SAUCES Just call it pepper sauce. In the Caribbean, “hot” goes without saying. Here are five of the best, from mild-mannered (#1) to just plain mean (#5).

1

PICKAPEPPA SAUCE, JAMAICA Known as

“Jamaican ketchup,” this fruity blend ofers only the faintest touch of fire.

2

BÚFALO CHIPOTLE SAUCE, MEXICO

3

DELISH BAJAN PEPPER SAUCE, BARBADOS

Smoky sweetness hides the picante underneath. The pepper-sauce equivalent of the perfect first date.

There’s heat, but it doesn’t crowd out flavor in this tangy mustardbased sauce. A table staple or, as the maker says, “Delish in every dish.”

4

MATOUK’S FLAMBEAU SAUCE, TRINIDAD

Naming this Congo pepper condiment after a flaming torch isn’t a stretch. A serious hothead not to be trifled with.

5

MELINDA’S ORIGINAL HABANERO XXXTRA, COSTA RICA The peppers

— 40 to 60 times hotter than jalapenos — are calmed by carrots, onions, garlic and lime. Still, it’s a fiery personality.

20

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

SULPHUR SPRINGS PARK, SAINT LUCIA ➔ Billed as

“the Caribbean’s only drive-in volcano,” Sulphur Springs is an eye-popping, rotten-egg-scented, easy-to-reach collection of boiling springs, belching steam vents and hot mud baths. (Take a dip to rejuvenate your skin.) Molten rock runs just 1¼ miles below the surface, but the volcano here has been dormant since 1766 and you can walk across its crater. (Double dog dare ya!) BOILING LAKE, DOMINICA

➔ Picture the giant cauldron of a gargantuan witch. The bubbling, steaming brew is kept at a boil by hot gases escaping through a crack in the Earth. The threehour hike (each way) crosses the Valley of Desolation, where rivers run hot and steam hisses from the ground. Don’t be surprised when your guide boils an egg without starting a fi re.

CLABONY SULPHUR SPRINGS, GRENADA ➔ Spend

the morning hiking in Grand Etang National Park, then soak tired muscles in the warm waistdeep pool nearby. The route winds through gorgeous nutmeg and banana plantations, but we suggest employing a 4x4 and a guide, since the track is rutted mud and the turns tricky.

MOUNT PELÉE, MARTINIQUE

➔ Currently dormant (but monitored constantly), Pelée wiped out 30,000 people in 1902, making it one of the world’s deadliest eruptions. The hike through rainforest to the crater and back is a stunner. So too are the ruins left in the city of St. Pierre. — av


CT+L

ISTOCK/MICHAELUTECH; FROM TOP OPPOSITE: CUBOIMAGES SRL/ALAMY; ISTOCK/FLOORTJE; PATRICE HAUSER/GETTY IMAGES

We know, we know: It’s cold where you are. What better time to taunt you with the hottest, spiciest and sexiest things the region has to ofer?

SOUFRIERE HILLS VOLCANO MONTSERRAT

After a long sleep, the volcano erupted in 1995, burying the island in ash and making two-thirds of it uninhabitable. But no worries about visiting this modern-day Pompeii: The steaming volcano is monitored 24/7 for signs of explosive activity.

HOT


CT+L 365 FEBRUARY

With the opening ceremonies in Sochi, Russia, slated for Feb. 7, we take a moment to highlight our fave Caribbean sports, and how much time you’ll need to enjoy them.

16

GOAT RACING ➔ TOBAGO Don’t laugh at a goat running on a dirt road or swimming in Tobago’s bays this time of year. It’s probably in training. Goat handlers spend two months muscling up their animals for the annual 100-meter races in Buccoo on Easter Tuesday. All right, laugh. Shoot some video too.

tator sport that encourages blankets, beach chairs and Balashis? The strange part is hearing no bouncing ball. Instead, the ball (which is depressurized) goes puf when it hits the sand. So does the rally.

SECONDS

60

2

HOURS

BOBSLED ➔ JAMAICA SECONDS At the Winter Olympics in Calgary in 1988, the Jamaican bobsled team competed with a sled they found in a storage room at the Games. They fl ipped. They fi nished you-know-where. Six years later they returned, fi nishing ahead of teams from the U.S. and Russia. Today, you can ride the infamous bobsled (more like a roller coaster) at Mystic Mountain near Ocho Rios.

45

MINUTES

1

WHO SAYS PUERTO RICANS CAN’T LUGE?

Notable Winter Olympians from the Caribbean

22

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

NETHERLANDS ANTILLES The Jamai-

can bobsled team drew all the attention in 1988, but the Antilles two-man team actually finished one spot higher. That made Antilles the top finisher among snowless nations.

BEACH TENNIS ➔ ARUBA What could be more perfect for Aruba than a spec-

2

PUERTO RICO

George Tucker was considered a Caribbean pioneer for competing in luge in 1984, even though he finished last and was introduced as “George Turkey” by the Yugoslavian PA announcer.

3

BASEBALL ➔ DOMINICAN REPUBLIC We’ve seen “ball”

games break out with palm fronds and almond pods, broomsticks and corn kernels, cabilma branches and sea grapes. Then there’s the Golden Dolphin Villa in Cabrera, where guests can suit up for a game with locals — complete with Presidentes, bratwurst and real bats.

5

CRICKET ➔ BARBADOS Bring a comfy chair and a toothbrush because a two-inning game could go on until Friday. But to Bajans, every minute counts. An ESPN columnist once described a cricket match here as “pulsating, nerve-jangling, thrilling.” You had to be there, I guess. — Robert Stephens DAYS

BVI Speed skater

Erroll Fraser competed in the Winter Olympics in 1984, before the BVI even had an athlete in the Summer Olympics. He finished kinda sorta not anywhere close to first.

4

USVI In 2006, luger Anne Abernathy became, at age 53, the oldest woman ever to qualify for the Winter Olympics, earning the nickname “Grandma Luge.” So what has your granny done lately?

FROM TOP: IMAGESTATE MEDIA PARTNERS LIMITED-IMPACT PHOTOS/ALAMY; BARBADOS TOURISM AUTHORITY; SHUTTERSTOCK; OPPOSITE: ILLUSTRATION BY IKER AYESTARAN

A Diferent Kind of Winter Olympics


u

HOW TO u

NOT LOOK LIKE A TOURIST Socks with sandals, fanny packs, humongous hats — we can all spot tourists. Here are some not so obvious do’s and don’ts for blending in. DON’T WEAR

* T-shirts with

* Neck pillows

painted bikini bodies

outside of an airplane

* Camouflage;

it’s illegal in Barbados

* Tank tops

with big, droopy arm cutouts; rhinestone/ gem bedazzle shirts (a la Richard Simmons)

* Apparel

with big logos, especially words across your buttocks

* Adidas shower

shoes with socks (the Caribbean isn’t a dorm shower)

WHERE EVEN THE SOPHISTICATION IS LAID BACK

DO WEAR * Coverups

over bikinis in the hotel lobby or bar

* Colored

or patterned shorts

* Leather

flip-flops, or slightly elegant sandals; fedoras that dress up an outfit

* Solid-color,

button-down shirts, light linen shirts, solids and stripes; keep it simple

A leisurely swim in sparkling azure waters. A soothing massage on your own private balcony. An afternoon spent gazing at the sun-splashed Atlantic with not a cruise ship or a care in sight. The Sands at Grace Bay offers a soul-satisfying tranquility along with inspired cuisine, considerate service and as much – or as little – activity as you choose. U N S P O I L E D. U N C O M M O N. U N P R E T E N T I O U S.

For reservations, see your travel professional or call 1.877.77.SANDS (72637)

thesandstc.com

Providenciales • Turks & Caicos

an exceptional all suite beachfront resort


CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE:

Cruise Edition With cruise season in high gear, we help you find the perfect ship, whether it’s about the kids, the itinerary or the five-star treatment.

Best for

FAMILIES

DISNEY MAGIC ➔ While the young-

sters become superheroes at Marvel’s Avengers Academy, parents can relax at the After Hours night spots, and everyone can be a kid again on the AquaDunk, a three-story water slide that careens out over the ocean. ROYAL CARIBBEAN (Allure of the Seas/Oasis of the Seas) ➔ With a carousel, a zip line, surf simulators, rockclimbing walls, an ice-skating rink, and characters from Shrek, Madagascar and Kung Fu Panda — not to mention the cupcake shop (root beer! Key lime!) — these massive twin sister ships ofer plenty for tots and teens. NORWEGIAN EPIC ➔ Two words:

AIRPORT UPS AND DOWNS It’s been said a good landing is one you can walk away from. We couldn’t agree more. With that in mind, here’s a list of airports, in order from “Aaaaaah ...” to “Ahhhhhh!”

24

Royal Clipper (right), one of the world’s largest sailing ships, under sail alongside its sibling, the Star Flyer.

1 ANTONIO RIVERA

RODRIGUEZ AIRPORT Vieques, Puerto Rico This place is a breeze. Exhibit A: Less than 25 feet around, the shortest island baggage-claim belt matches the tiny size of Vieques. That means less time on the tarmac, and more on Blue Beach.

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2 LYNDEN PINDLING

INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Nassau, Bahamas The Grayclif Divans Lounge (left) is a classy smoking lounge (smoking and nonsmoking sections) with an outdoor sun deck and complimentary Wi-Fi.

3 PHILIP S.W. GOLD-

SON INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Belize City, Belize This one is all about going with the flow. The Tropic Air pilot asks where you need to go, then replies, “We can stop there.” Bonus: If it’s a full flight, you might sit co-pilot.

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: STAR CLIPPERS; HORIZONS WWP/ALAMY; LORI BARBELY

Wii wall. Not the right two words? How about “bowling alley,” “water park” or “SpongeBob SquarePants”? Whichever floats your boat, they add up to family fun for all ages (including


CT+L 365 MARCH

the grown-ups), and that’s really the appeal of Norwegian’s ship. Best for

EXPERIENCES

ROYAL CARIBBEAN (Quantum of the

Seas) ➔ Debuting in November, Royal Caribbean’s latest ship raises the bar for onboard fun with yet another slate of cruising firsts, including a rollerskating rink, a skydiving simulator, bumper cars and the North Star, a glasswalled capsule that rises 300 feet above sea level to give a true bird’s-eye view. NORWEGIAN GETAWAY ➔ On the

Getaway, which just entered service in February, you’ll find a magic-inspired dinner show in the Illusionarium, Grammy nominees and winners in a specially themed club, and a ropes course in which you can actually walk the plank (pirates not included). ROYAL CLIPPER ➔ Action-packed megaliners aren’t for everyone — if they’re not for you, this tall ship ofers a voyage under sail to ports well of the beaten path. On what other cruise ship can you climb the mast to the crow’s nest or enjoy a massage while staring down at fish through an underwater porthole? Best for

LUXE FACTOR

SEABOURN SPIRIT ➔ You won’t find

bargain-basement prices on a Spirit sailing, but what you will fi nd is well worth the price tag: all-suite accommodations, a fold-out marina for water sports, and impeccable service on an overgrown yacht where the crew-topassenger ratio is practically 1-to-1. 4 PRINCESS JULIANA

INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT St. Maarten Plane spotting is a pastime in St. Maarten (right), where jets come in hot mere feet over Maho Beach. Avoid the jet-engine thrust at nearby Sunset Beach Bar.

5 QUEEN BEATRIX

INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Aruba U.S. Customs preclearance means you go through the customs and immigration process while on foreign soil leaving Aruba, Nassau, Freeport and Bermuda.

THE MOORINGS ➔ A crewed luxury

yacht or a six-cabin catamaran? Tortola, Grenada or the BVI? The Moorings is all about the fantasy float-cation, where a typical day at sea hops from stateroom to snorkeling to snacks from the personal chef. MARINEMAX VACATIONS ➔ Cruise

ships, now in fun size. MarineMax ofers what are essentially buoyant villas: crewed yachts ranging in size from 50 to 300 feet available for charter not only in the Caribbean, but the Mediterranean and South Pacific as well. Best for

DESTINATIONS

SEA DREAM I ➔ Thanks to its tiny size

— it’s more yacht than cruise ship — Sea Dream I can access tiny ports that you’d otherwise need a sailboat to reach. This ship visits truly secluded spots like Culebrita, Saba and the Grenadines. And you’ll never have to hoist a jib. PAUL GAUGUIN (Tere Moana) ➔

Check out the 14-day itinerary that skips the A-list stops in lieu of locales with indie cred: English Harbour, Antigua; Les Saintes, Guadaloupe; Willemstad, Curaçao; Cartagena, Colombia; and Isla de Coba, Panama. HOLLAND AMERICA (m/s Maasdam)

➔ With 20 diferent destinations on

its Caribbean itineraries, Maasdam will take you to ports like St. Kitts, Martinique and rarely visited St. Vincent — sometimes on the same voyage — and it won’t cost you premiumcruise prices. — Cynthia Psarakis Find more cruises at islands.com/cruises.

6 GUSTAF III

AIRPORT St. Barth, FWI If the nosedive approach necessary to hit the short runway doesn’t make you sweat, seeing the expression on the drivers’ faces as your plane’s wheels almost graze them in the hilltop roundabout will.

7 JUANCHO E.

YRAUSQUIN AIRPORT Saba Somewhat akin to taking of from an aircraft carrier. When the runway ends, it drops 60 feet. Pray your pilot has enough speed. You may find yourself suddenly feeling religious.

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 0 1 4

25


CT+L 365 MARCH

OUR FAVORITE BEACH BARS

1

The Soggy Dollar, BVI ➔ Mic methodically pumps out painkillers by the halfdozen. Boats begin arriving before noon, anchoring feet of White Bay Beach, radios up. The Soggy crowd (left) swells far beyond the bar’s tiny footprint, content to play ring toss, and slowly get drunk in the sand. They come from every island within boating distance Sunday after Sunday because there’s no place in the world they’d rather be.

2

MooMba Beach Bar, Aruba ➔ Shaded by divi divi trees and giant thatch palapas, this is Aruba’s epicenter of idle. A bastion of inaction on a tranquil shore by day, it’s just the opposite

by night. When the locals routinely speak five languages and love to salsa, there’s no excuse not to meet people.

3

BasilÕs, Mustique ➔ Rich people know how to party. Since glitterati from Academy Award winners to royalty regularly grace Basil’s (that’s him below) Bali-style

FROM LEFT: ZACH STOVALL; NIK WHEELER/ALAMY; ZACH STOVALL (2); SHUTTERSTOCK

The truest way to honor St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) is to raise a libation and a hearty sláinte. Start here.


CT+L 365 MARCH

Cay dune have small pools to play around in, the grownups have dancing on tables. Everyone leaves happy.

porch, the rum-addled stories produced from late nights have earned Basil an indelible reputation. He knows stuf, but people here don’t spill secrets.

8

4

Tamboo Tavern, Puerto Rico ➔ Hanging surfoard decor and Reef Girl posters aren’t necessary to prove its merit as a legitimate surf shack. In fact, there’s no denying it when the winter swell breaks right of the tavern’s back deck. It becomes the most popular bar on the west coast of Puerto Rico, and the surfoards are aplenty then.

5

Gwen’s Reggae Grill, Anguilla ➔ Begin Sunday afternoon with a lazy swim and barbecue lunch. Then get primed with a steady stream of rum punches. When the scratch band explodes, give in. The all-ages all-smiles party follows on the porch overlooking Shoal Bay East will make you want to stay forever.

6

Elvis’ Beach Bar, Anguilla ➔ Slide up to the Elvis’ beached Anguilla race boat (below right) and order something. Anything. It’s the place everyone stops in — locals and visitors alike — and no one here has ever met a stranger. Trust us. Before your first one’s empty, you’ll feel like a regular.

7

Nippers Beach Bar & Grill, Bahamas ➔ The no-see-ums this dive was named after may nip your ankles, but the frozen Nippers will nip your sobriety much faster. And while the kids on the Great Guana

Nisbet PLANTATION BEACH CLUB NEVIS, WEST INDIES

Yellow Beach Bar, Pinel Island, St. Martin ➔ Take the five-minute water taxi from Cul de Sac. What await are an uninhabited island with thatch-roofed huts, lobster lunches plucked straight from the water, a constantly shifting sandbar, sexy bartenders with oohla-la accents, and the most picture-perfect view of St. Martin. If heaven exists on Earth, this is it. Proof: The beach is also topless. — zs

IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect

b

TIM E TO

Stuf Your Face in Cancun

French food? In the land of salbutes? That’s what the (deep breath) Wine & Food Festival Cancun-Riviera Maya, March 13-16, is going for this year. Celebrity tastemaker Daniel Boulud joins 50 chefs from around the globe (from Canada to Brazil) to celebrate French eats and drinks. The hot ticket is the “all-inclusive” gourmet day: a sip-and-sample-palooza in an oceanfront mega-tent. We’re predicting the next big foodie trend: Frexican.

Stay “Top Hotels in the Caribbean” - TripAdvisor

Relax

“World’s Best Service” - Travel + Leisure

Dine

“Best Island Resorts for Food” - Condé Nast Traveler

Experience the very best at Nisbet Plantation, the Caribbean’s only historic plantation inn on the beach.

800-742-6008 www.nisbetplantation.com


CT+L 365 MARCH

Floating cabana at the Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman

Above & Beyond

Overindulge at five resorts where next-level amenities pack a punch. 3

LEAVE THE PACKING TO THE PROS Don’t feel weird about it. At The St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort in Puerto Rico, your personal butler will fold your wardrobe between crisp sheets of tissue paper while you hit the pool one last time. ss

SPLURGE IN PRIVATE At Barbados’ Sandy Lane resort, the staf is there when you need them, but you won’t spy them en route to their daily chores: An underground network of tunnels accommodates all back-of-house services. sss

5

LOOK UP At Jumby Bay, a private-island resort situated just of Antigua, guests stargaze in style with the resident astronomer: Think comfy lounge chairs, nibbles and champagne on pristine Pasture Beach — binoculars included. ssss

GO WITH THE FLOAT Soak up the sun while you suck down a margarita in a two-person floating cabana at the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman. Or order

lunch from a four-top Aqua Lounge table, also right in the water. sssss

KEY s Pretty fancy. ss Over the top. sss Oh, no, you didn’t. ssss This is getting ridiculous. sssss No. Way.

28

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

ZACH STOVALL

HAVE YOUR CAKE Craving cheesecake at midnight? Fancy a fajita feast at 4 a.m.? Happily, at all-inclusive megaresort Excellence Playa Mujeres near Cancun, 24-hour room service is included in the room rate. Just remember to say gracias. s

2


You’re In Good Coman When ou Choose Windson on Grace Ba

A Preferred Boutique Hotel Trip Advisor Top 25 Caribbean Hotel Expedia Insider’s Select Travelocity Excellence Award Fodor’s Choice Magellan Design Awards Condé Nast Grace Bay World’s Best Beach

Whether it is the most recognized names in the travel industry, delighted vacationers, or Windsong condominium owners, you’re in good company when you choose the Windsong Resort. Windsong is the perfect luxury island getaway to relax, refresh and invest in your “well-being.” And, for those who choose to own, it is also an investment that can provide a perennial source of rental income when you are away. That’s perfection in paradise – vacationing and owning luxury oceanfront property in an exquisitely pristine, tropical setting. Enjoy boutique luxury overlooking the island’s best reef on world-famous Grace Bay. Dining • Spa • Fitness • Heated Pool • Meeting Facilities • Luxury Rentals • Sales from $450K - $2.8M Turks & Caicos Islands • (649) 333-7700 • 1-800-WINDSONG (946-3766) • www.windsongresort.com


cT+l 365 APRIL

got back $ 10 0,0 0 0 s

s 1

Bonefish Cay, Bahamas

Buy an island

GUNPOWDER ISLAND

BeRMUDa A 7.5-acre expanse once used to

stash military explosives. (Use the on-site barracks for your next big corporate event!) Price upon request. privateislandsonline.com 2

LITTLE CHANNEL CAYE

BelIZe This 1.5-acre sliver of awesome lets

you live out your life on a postcard. Should you have a few extra sheckles to spare, purchase Big Channel Caye as well. $350,000. caribbean islandbrokers.com BONEFISH CAY BaHaMaS A 13-acre atoll that’s completely self-sufcient (translation: on-island electricity and desalination). Take a swim at low tide to your own coral reef. $14.5 million. vladi-private-islands.de 3

tAX ReFUnD sPenDinG Rent a Villa

got back $ 10,0 0 0 s

s

VILLA BALINESE TURKS anD caIcOS A 4,200-square-foot Indo-

nesian vibe in the Caribbean, complete with infinity pool that runs the length of the villa. $5,000-$16,000 per week. luxuryretreats.com 2 BANYAN TREE PInK SanDS ReSORT, THe BaHaMaS Chill at the pri-

vate pool, enjoy your own chef, and stash the in-laws in the 700-square-foot, one-bedroom cottage. $20,000-$26,000 per week. pinksandsresort.com 3

HUMMINGBIRD VILLA

MUSTIQUe Think Jetsons’ summer home:

Villa Balinese, Turks and Caicos

30

c T+ l S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

sleek architecture, open spaces. There’s room for 10, not including the six-person staf. $50,000 per week. villasofmustique.com

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: VLADI-PRIVATE-ISLANDS.DE; ZOETRY WELLNESS & SPA RESORTS; COURTESY MATACHICA RESORT & SPA; LUXURYRETREATS.COM

1


cT+l 365 APRIL

got back

Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita, Mexico

All-inclusive

$ 1,0 0 0 s

s

GROTTO BAY BeRMUDa All-inclusives are an endangered species in Bermuda, so Grotto Bay deserves special attention. At $270 per night, this 201-room, 11-cottage retreat is a proper budget getaway. grottobay.com 1

BARCELO BAVARO PALACE DELUXE DOMInIcan RePUBlIc One of our favorite Punta Cana megaresorts boasts a rum-and-cigar bar, an 18-hole golf course and a “floating” cocktail lounge. Starts at $270 per night. barcelo.com 2

ZOETRY PARAISO DE LA BONITA RIVIeRa Maya, MeXIcO The resort’s “endless privileges” include a bottomless mini bar (sold!). Don’t miss the lively catamaran sunset cruise. Starts at $553. zoetryresorts.com 3

GUiDe

We’ve got suggestions, lots of  ’em — depending on how much Uncle Sam sends back your way, of course. got back

stay Cheap

$ 10 0 s

s

SOHO PLAYA Playa Del caRMen, MeXIcO Urban chic resort 1

with a focus on a spa that’s walking distance from the beach. Lower your heart rate even more at the 8:30 p.m. meditation session. Starts at $99. sohoplaya.com 2 JAKES TReaSURe BeacH, JaMaIca Funky, fashionable hotel on the island’s south side with a laid-back, no-problems attitude. Chill poolside under the shade of almond and coconut trees. Starts at $99. jakeshotel.com

MATACHICA BelIZe A quick watertaxi ride from San Pedro, Matachica is a Belize resort without the jungle-trekking commute. Choose from 26 casitas and villas. Starts at $200. matachica.com — kh 3

Matachica, Belize

c T+ l S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 0 1 4

31


A location known as The Sandbar on Grand Cayman is where visitors can swim with southern stingrays.

STEPHEN FRINK COLLECTION/ALAMY; CLOCKWISE FROM TOP OPPOSITE: AURORA PHOTOS/ALAMY; BLICKWINKEL/ALAMY; STEPHEN FRINK COLLECTION/ALAMY; THE WESTIN ST. JOHN RESORT & VILLAS; CHRIS A CRUMLEY/ALAMY; IMAGE SOURCE/ALAMY

cT+l 365 APRIL


snorkeling starter kit Red Sail Sports’ Stingray

The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman sits over

The second-longest barrier reef in the world attracts sea turtles, nurse sharks and moray eels in staggering numbers. Brace for fin-clad crowds too.

White Sands Dive Shop at Las Terrazas

Resort & Residences makes daily runs to Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley for $45 per person. Gear and a park fee cost extra.

condo-style rooms ofer full kitchens. For a post-snorkel snack, chef Manuel Dorigoni’s ceviche pairs nicely with local Belikin beer.

Reefs such as Nari Nari, Little Elvis and School House attract myriad tropical fish, as well as eels, sting rays and 5-foot reef sharks.

Stuart Cove’s, located in the old Flipper movie set, ofers pickups from any hotel. Its 46-foot Zambezi boat (takes 35; 14 is average) is a floating party.

Perched high on a hill 12 miles from Nassau, the 10-room A Stone’s Throw Away B&B boasts wraparound porches and gratis shuttles rides to Love Beach.

The Caicos Cays are as deserted as when pirates plied these seas. A stop at Water Cay means a chance to snorkel through the wreck of a

Ocean Club Resorts is

decades-old cargo ship.

Retired from a life rumrunning, the 77-foot Atabeyra departs from the Blue Haven Marina. Excursions include rum punch, snacks and gear.

The snorkeling trail of the coast of Trunk Bay typically gets all the love, but true adventurers head ofshore for a drift snorkel at “secret” reefs that shelter blowfish and octopus.

The Sadie Sea can take 37 guests, but often the 40-foot trawler embarks with just four. Tours depart from the nationalpark dock.

The Westin St. John Resort & Villas occupies

GRAND CAYMAN, CAYMAN ISLANDS

1 2

Mingling with southern stingrays may seem

AMBERGRIS CAYE, BELIZE

3

STAY

PROVIDENCIALES, TURKS AND CAICOS

4

SAIL

ST. JOHN, USVI

5

SEE

NEW PROVIDENCE, BAHAMAS

Water visibility peaks in the spring, so dive in. Here are our favorite spots to swim, skim and sleep. — Erika Hueneke

spooky, but at Stingray City, it’s a harmless excursion. The water is waist deep, and guides feed the rays (which is why they stick around).

Sandbar & Reef Sail departs on a 65-foot catamaran from the Safehaven dock and includes a stop at a coral reef. Rum punch is extra (but worth it).

a prime spot on Seven Mile Beach. There’s no reason to stay dry with free access to water trikes and sea hammocks. At Las Terrazas,

afordable among Grace Bay Beach’s grand dames. Its passion-fruit daiquiris use local Bambarra Rum.

47 acres near Cruz Bay. A $12 million refresh of all 96 pool- and beach-side hotel rooms wrapped in January.


cT+l 365 APRIL

u

USE YOUR ARMS When you’re slowing down or coming to a stop, flap one arm like a bird’s wing out the driver-side window. Just in case the person behind missed your brake lights.

4

STEP

HOW TO

DRIVE IN THE CARIBBEAN u

5

STEP ON THE GAS Some locals take the laid-back life too literally and drive at 30 mph. Shoot past them with a burst of acceleration as you pop into the other lane. Give a light (read: very light) horn tap as a courtesy. Also, smile. STEP

KEEP LEFT A majority of the Caribbean drives on the left side of the road. Islands where they drive on the right: French West Indies, Puerto Rico, Haiti, Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Cuba and the Dominican Republic.

1

STEP

BRAKE FOR ANIMALS The road is hardly your own in the Caribbean. Cows have the right

6

STEP

DON’T TAILGATE Cars stop in the middle of the road, often to pick up or drop of passengers, or just chat with passing drivers.

WATCH THE ROAD Be careful on smaller, more rugged islands. Potholes make locals do crazy things, like swerve into oncoming trafc or climb an embankment. And if you pull over and ask for directions on Guadeloupe, they might think you’re stopping to give them a ride.

HONK AWAY Your horn is your best friend. Use a light tap and a wave to greet passers-by, while a long, extended beep signals your approach around a sharp corner.

LISTEN UP Keep the car radio on. This is the only way to hear news of a volcanic eruption, carnival, rugby match or other events that can impact your commute. — KH

2

STEP

3

STEP

8

perfect b

TIM e TO

see an lslandwide Food Fight

Break out your “things I ate” foodie checklist and get ready for some serious caloric damage during the St. Croix Food & Wine Experience. On April 6-12, the largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands turns into a no-holds-barred bacchanal, with celeb chefs and wine dinners ever y night. Local and visiting chefs will also compete in a “food fight” on the beach to prove their culinary prowess. Other events include tasting crawl through historic Christiansted, a sunset barbecue that blends dining

c T+ l S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

7

STEP

STEP

IT ’ S TH e

a

34

of way in St. Martin. Give way to motorcyclists or moped riders in the Dominican Republic: The law tends to side with bikers.

and dancing under the stars. The event’s climax, A Taste of St. Croix, held at the Divi Carina Bay Resort, draws 2,000 guests and participants to sample the island’s best cuisine, wine, rum and beer, all while celebrity chefs judge the island’s restaurants. The bout is for bragging rights, but on an island that draws culinary influences from Dutch, French, Spanish, West Indian and African roots, the showdown means just one thing: Allez cuisine! stxfoodandwine .com — Holly Kapherr

FROM TOP: ILLUSTRATION BY IKER AYESTARAN; COURTESY ST. CROIX FOOD & WINE EXPERIENCE; OPPOSITE: ZACH STOVALL (2)

Because you need to obey the local laws. Because safety comes first. Because you don’t want to run over a goat.


2

the

O n ly Pl ac e

where @

A ResoRt MAkes its own CAR

Screw the golf cart. On Petit St. Vincent, a tony privateisland resort in the Grenadines, guests are whisked between the beach and their plush villas in a feet of spify Mini Mokes. Production of the iconic British beach buggies began in the 1960s and has long since halted, but for the past 45 years, PSV has manufactured the rugged of-roaders itself. Sorry, eco-warriors: It only gets 3 miles per gallon. — sgg

Surprisingly affordable luxury on Grace Bay. Royal West Indies is a beachside resort featuring Studios and 1 and 2 bedroom Suites. Perfect for honeymooners, sun lovers and families alike. Enjoy nonmotorized water sports and fabulous meals at the Pelican Bay Restaurant & Bar.

reservations@ royalwestindies.com 1-800-332-4203 www.royalwestindies.com

Bonaire’s only All-Inclusive resort!

Toll Free 1-800-766-6016 www.plazabeachresortbonaire.com Plaza Beach Resort Bonaire – the only resort on Bonaire that offers an All Inclusive package.

Packages from $1,110 pp/dbl for a 7 night ALL-INCLUSIVE stay.

PRICE INCLUDES: • Buffet style meals • Theme buffet nights • Live cooking stations • Daytime snacks • Unlimited drinks (*premium brands & other restrictions apply) • Daytime activities and evening entertainment • On-site Coral Casino • Day spa and fitness center • Beach chair & Pool towels • Free WI-FI • 6 days unlimited shore diving • Round trip airport transfers • All taxes and service charges (excludes marine park fee)


CT+L 365 MAY

THE BUZZ-O-METER Before you glance down the bar and have what she’s having, know what you’re getting your liver into. Our wimpy-to-where-am-I cocktail chart can help. SO WHAT ARE YOU HAVING?

Let’s skip the child’s play.

MUDSLIDE

I’m not leaving the bar.

PIÑA COLADA

Chocolate milk

I want something yummy.

Puerto Rico If you’re ordering a pineapple-rum drink that ends in “a” or “o” and comes with an umbrella, you should be wearing a tiara and a T-shirt that says “bride.”

Sunblock

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE NIGHT?

PAINKILLER

BVI There’s a direct correlation between rum-to-mixer ratio and imminent danger. You still have four fruit juices competing with the rum. You can do better.

’TI PUNCH

Heavy dancing

I’m not sure yet.

Light conversation

WHAT ARE YOU TWO ARGUING ABOUT? CUBA LIBRE

Havana Now we’re getting into chest-hair-inducing territory. The pop of Coke and lime hides the fact that you’re essentially drinking moonshine (Bacardi 151). I love you, man. Seriously.

Politics

We’re having a debate about ...

Relationships

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

Nevis When a bartender refuses to divulge a drink’s entire recipe, be warned. There’s rum, passion-fruit juice … but what’s that secret ingredient?

WE’RE NOT KIDDING, THIS STUFF IS POTENT. BUSH RUM

Coyote Ugly

Let’s get crazy!

The Hangover

OK, YOU’RE CUT OFF — GO TO BED. 36

How weak the drinks are here

KILLER BEE

PLANTER’S PUNCH regional Some lush thought to use two rums instead of one. And one of those rums is often Jamaica’s highly flammable John Crow Batty. Floor, meet face.

French West Indies We’ve started to eliminate the fruit basket to get to what matters. Clean and smooth from rhum agricole, it’s the mojito’s promiscuous cousin.

regional When you can get fined for personal consumption of a liquor, try it. Get ready to hear the stories about that time you used a ship’s mast as a stripper pole.

SHUTTERSTOCK (8)

Grand Cayman Yeah, it’s tasty, but so are lollipops and Lucky Charms. This vodkaKahlua slushy could practically be relegated to a child’s diet.


precious

Time is so , smart couples steal it

Rendezvous allows you to find time, time to be together, time to relax, time to talk. It gives you time to reconnect and to reflect. It gives you time to concentrate on each other, to refocus. It gives you time to rediscover what matters most – you.

Rediscover life’s pleasures together. Visit www.theromanticholiday.com or call 1 888 877 4705


ON A SCALE OF $10 TO $1 Being down to your last lempiras doesn’t mean the fun is over.

10

$

JAMAICA Dive into the Blue Hole near Ocho Rios — the guides will force you to have fun.

Divi Carina Bay, St. Croix

9

$

TOBAGO Ride out to the Nylon Pool and snorkel in every shade of Caribbean water ever described.

Most Inclusive All-Inclusives $8

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC Eat fresh

GET A LOT OF BANG FOR A LITTLE BUCK AT THESE EVERYTHING -AND -MORE RESORTS.

JEWEL RUNAWAY BAY, JAMAICA ➔ To appreciate this

resort between MoBay and Ocho Rios, bring kids — anyone’s kids. What you get Dive-in movies, beach Olympics and hay rides. What you don’t Anything resembling adults-only. What you pay $325 (standard); $545 (junior suite). PARADISE ISLAND HARBOUR RESORT, NASSAU ➔ This basic

all-inc is one block from Atlantis, with a 50-mile diference in price. What you get Mountain bikes, three meals and endless snacks. What you don’t High-speed Internet, water slides. What you pay $250 (standard); $400 (beachfront). GRAND PINEAPPLE, ANTIGUA

➔ Spring-breakers have yet to touch the quarter-mile beach where this Sandals sibling sits. What you get One price for all eats, drinks, snacks and tips. What you don’t All-night restaurants and all-night noise. What you pay $338 (standard); $468 (beachfront). IBEROSTAR COSTA DORADA, PUERTO PLATA, DR ➔ Not as

expensive as Punta Cana, and it’s

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a direct flight from the U.S. What you get Beach bar, pool bar, lobby bar and an archery range (maybe try the archery first). What you don’t A new menu every day, peace on weekends. What you pay $306 (standard); $425 (junior suite). DIVI CARINA BAY, ST. CROIX

➔ No passports necessary for U.S. citizens, so that could be additional savings. The snorkeling of the long beach is as good as it gets in any U.S. territory. What you get Horses and hammocks on the beach, and the best snorkeling in any U.S. territory. What you don’t Giant water slides, beach villa appeal. What you pay $448 (a four-night special for a family of four). Pool suite at Grand Pineapple, Antigua

snapper with a side of Presidente on hard-tofind Playa Caleton.

7

$

SAINT LUCIA Hike

the Tet Paul Nature Trail for a view of the Pitons (price covers one adult and one child).

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$

UTILA Play

the weirdest mini-golf course we’ve ever seen. The fee includes a beer and a tip.

5

$

ST. CROIX Tour the

Cruzan Rum Distillery. Yes, of course, there are samples.

4

$

BEQUIA Fawn over the world’s cutest babies at the Old Hegg Turtle Sanctuary.

3

$

GRENADA Hike to

and splash in Seven Sisters Waterfalls. Use the ofered walking stick.

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$

PUERTO RICO Eat

pinchos in Pinones on Sundays.

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$

ROATAN At the

airport, leave your leftover lempiras in the boxes to fund the medical clinic for needy locals. — RS


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MAY

It’s high season, which begets big spending, which begets overbooked hotels, which begets cries of “How much?!” Let us show you where May is not celebrated as max-the-Visa month.

CHEAP

SUNSCAPE

SUNSCAPE RESORT & SPAS; FROM TOP OPPOSITE: DIVI CARINA BAY ST. CROIX RESORT; SHUTTERSTOCK; GRAND PINEAPPLE BEACH RESORTS

CURAÇAO

Curaçao, Aruba’s exotic neighbor, is a world-class diving destination, and Sunscape makes it part of the all-inc package. You’ll get nonstop food, lessons in windsurfing and (finally!) sumo wrestling. You won’t get a 12th bar or restaurant — there are only 11 (oh, the humanity). Spend your extra money on the craps table in the casino. Remember, it’s not an investment. May rates: $380 (standard room, two people); $550 (ocean view, four people)


CT+L 365 JUNE

Moonsplash, Rendezvous Bay, Anguilla

It happens once a month. The moon, if the clouds cooperate, works like a spotlight. Who can sleep? Who wants to?

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MILD

TRELLIS BAY, BEEF ISLAND, BVI

Beach bufet at 7 p.m., followed by stilt dancers, steel-pan music and floating fireballs (copper sculptures torched on the water and burning for hours). Back in the room by 10.

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JUNGLE TRAILS, GRENADA

Every Saturday the island’s Hash House Harriers set 50 to 350 people loose on a late-day hike. And once a month the hike starts just before moonrise. The goal? To return to the trailhead for beer. Muddy shoes required. SUNSHINE’S, NEVIS ➔ Guests at the Four Seasons next door to Sunshine’s see the bonfi re and the tree-stump tables and sidle on over. Lose the sport coat, unless it’s white. Anyone dressed in all white scores a discount on Killer Bees (the secret rum punch).

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Party Scene

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MEDIUM

RENDEZVOUS BAY, ANGUILLA ➔

Moonsplash happens only in March. Organizer Bankie Banx

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needs a year to schedule four days’ and three nights’ worth of Caribbean bands, with the headliner playing around 3:30 a.m., give or take an hour. “We aren’t picky,” Bankie says. “We keep it simple and natural.” An apt description of his driftwood-constructed Dune Preserve Beach Bar too. Party Scene

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WILD

KOKOMO BEACH, CURAÇAO

The bonfi re is the tamest part of this scene. As many as 3,000 people show up on the beach for house music, dancing and ID checks. It’s kind of like the height of spring break showing up on a monthly schedule.

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BOMBAS SURFSIDE SHACK, TOR-

TOLA, BVI ➔ Families having a good time at the Trellis Bay Full Moon Party (see “Mild”) are thankful to be on the other side of the isle when this one starts up. Be careful of, in reverse order: the punch, the tea, the mushrooms. And also watch out for lost possessions — like bras and vomit — in the sand. — rs

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: ZACH STOVALL (6); PHOTO RESOURCE HAWAII/ALAMY

Full Moon Parties

Party Scene


CT+L 365 JUNE

u

HOW TO u

TAKE THE PERFECT PHOTO

June 20 is the longest day of the year. With all that daylight, it’s your best chance to snap something to hang over the sofa. Check out these five tips from our resident sharpshooter Zach Stovall.

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DISTINGUISH YOURSELF

TAKE CHANCES

THE RULE OF THIRDS

GET HIGH

KEEP COMPOSED

Avoid the trap of shooting a desertlike expanse that has no focal point. Find something (like a palm tree, thatch hut or umbrella) to help frame the shot and give the scene scale.

Shoot the first thing that comes to mind, then turn around. There’s probably a better opportunity behind you. Do the same with portraits — experiment with diferent backgrounds and angles.

To make an image more interesting, think of the frame as a three-bythree grid, then align the elements where the lines intersect. That said, see Tip 2, some rules are meant to be broken.

Beaches look amazing when viewed from above. A high vantage point disguises the small imperfections while allowing you to use its curvaceous shape to your compositional advantage.

Draw the eye deeper into your photo by using “leading lines” — a dock, a jetty or the line where the sea meets the sand. Make sure these lines are leading the eye to something interesting.

Simply Magical

Discover a sense of inner peace at Rosalie Bay Resort on the Caribbean’s Nature Island of Dominica. At this eco-boutique and wellness resort, natural beauty and elegant touches create a simply magical vacation. Unwind in one of 28 spacious, air-conditioned rooms and suites, each with hand-carved furniture. Rejuvenate with healthy cuisine, stretch out with complimentary yoga and indulge in treatments at the waterfront spa.

This wind- and solar-powered sanctuary sits perfectly between the Rosalie River and a black sand beach, where endangered sea turtles nest. Retreat to Rosalie Bay Resort today and renew your spirit while helping the environment.

33% of 4 nights or more

Rosalie Bay Dominica (877) 732-2864 www.RosalieBay.com


CT+L 365 JUNE

IT’S HURRICANE SEASON.

Let’s Vacay! PEOPLE OFTEN THINK TROPICAL ISLES ARE OFFLIMITS JUNE 1-NOV. 30. NOPE. JUST HEAD SOUTH.

ARUBA ➔ Refreshing trade winds, low humidity, and the most sunny days per year of any Caribbean island. BARBADOS ➔ Hurricane Janet was the last storm to hit the home of Rihanna and Mount Gay Rum. The year: 1955. BOCAS DEL TORO, PANAMA ➔ On these undeveloped islands, eco-lodges and frequent power outages take you of the grid — literally. BONAIRE ➔ More than 55 percent of travelers to Bonaire are repeat visitors. Maybe it’s the lack of Category 5’s. CURAÇAO ➔ Don’t leave the island without riding one of the bipedal fowl at the Curaçao Ostrich Farm. Insider tip: Buy it dinner first. MARGARITA ISLAND, VENEZUELA ➔ We recommend a horseback ride out to Macanao peninsula ... through the water. TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO ➔ Everyone back home is stockpiling water. You’re enjoying a bake and shark (fish sandwich on steroids) at Richard’s.

Druif Beach, Aruba

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HOW TO u

FROM LEFT: ZACH STOVALL; MOVIESTORE COLLECTION LTD/ALAMY

STAY SHARK-FREE “Get out of the water!” No words spark more fear in beach lovers and tourism boards, not since June 20, 1975, when two musical notes (da-dum) and one big fish tapped a powder keg of worldwide fear. While Jaws has forever changed our view of the ocean, the Caribbean’s clear blue waters carry good news. Statistically, they’re extremely safe. Only the Bahamas consistently bubbles up in worldwide shark–bite statistics (five in 2013, none fatal), which mostly suggest avoiding spear fishing. It’s paltry stuf for a nation of 700 islands — especially compared to, say, Florida, which had an estimated 26 attacks in 2013. That’s 30 percent of the world’s annual shark attacks, all in one state. Uh-oh, Mickey. — ep

Try diving at any of our 86 marked sites, or go snorkeling, kayaking, hiking or windsurfng. The pace is up to you, as the choice of shopping, dining or touring is also yours. Without a traffc light in sight, there’s never a reason to rush…Simply relax, unwind and remember to leave your wrist watch at home.

Bonaire is serviced by Delta, United and Insel Air


CT+L 365

Hix Island House, Puerto Rico

JUNE

Islands on the C-List (as in Chill) IT’S A LITTLE HARDER TO GET TO THESE LESSER-KNOWN ISLANDS, BUT WHAT’S ONE MORE FERRY RIDE FOR A CHANCE TO DISCOVER A WELL-KEPT SECRET?

The Road Least Traveled S L I P O F F T H E B I G - R E S O RT S C E N E AT O N E O F T H E S E M I N I P R O P E RT I E S — A N D F O R A F R AC T I O N O F T H E P R I C E DURING LOW SEASON.

PUERTO RICO

HIX ISLAND HOUSE * From

afar, Hix Island House looks like a bunker, but take a few steps toward it, and the concrete walls and clean lines give way to birds and butterflies that come and go via the missing wall. You will too — from your hanging day bed to the chairs on the veranda. Number of rooms: 19. Nightly rate from $135. hixislandhouse.com

MARTINIQUE ➔ The Paris of the Caribbean is about as French as you can get, from Chanel handbags to the birthplace of Napoleon’s empress Josephine to a love of the drink. After a few ’ti punches — straight white rhum agricole with a dash of lime and cane syrup — your high-school French might not sound too bad. LOW-KEY CRED It’s out there: 1,950 miles from New York, and 275 miles from the closest South American coastline.

ST. MARTIN

LE PETIT HOTEL

owners were supposed to visit relatives for a two-month vacation back in 1996 but decided to stay and open a hotel instead. They did so with this spot on the French side of the isle, building 11 rooms facing the ocean and Grand Case Beach. You’ll feel like you’re being tended to by the cast of Cheers at Downton Abbey. Number of rooms: 11. Nightly rate from $265. lepetithotel.com JAMAICA

* It

used to be a recording studio used by moguls like Björk and Gwen Stefani. Live like them for a week in the foothills of the Blue Mountains, in pine cottages outfitted with the latest in high-tech gadgets. You can even lay down a track or two yourself. Welcome to the Apple store in the jungle. Number of rooms: 7. Nightly rate from $395. geejamhotel.com CAYMAN ISLANDS

COTTON TREE * You’re

only 10 minutes from touristtrod Seven Mile Beach, but you’d never know it. Here on West Bay, amid avocado trees, is Cayman’s only boutique hotel. It’s unlikely you’ll see another soul. Well, except for your personal chef and on-call sommelier. Number of rooms: 4. Nightly rate from $670. Discounted rates for couples. caymancottontree.com

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3 ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES ➔ Longtime

yachtie haven St. Vincent and its surrounding Grenadines made news when Capt. Jack Sparrow came onto the scene. But its timeless treasures are turtle sanctuaries, West Indian-style plantations and the private island of Mustique. LOW-KEY CRED Approximately 9,000 visitors stayed overnight in December 2012. That’s basically a Kardashian family reunion. DOMINICA ➔ Flying gurnards. Batfish. Golden crinoids. This ain’t the sea life of Cayman, the BVI or the Bahamas. A dearth of nonstop fl ights from the States keeps Dominica (due north of Venezuela) on the leasttraveled list, but it’s worth a few layovers to look one of these rare creatures in the eye. LOW-KEY CRED The population is 68,000, which equals the average daily visitor total for Niagara Falls. (No biggie: Dominica has waterfalls too.) — Audrey St. Clair 4

* The

GEEJAM HOTEL

LOW-KEY CRED At a mere 35 square miles, discovering Anguilla probably required more efort than crashing into a continent. (No ofense, Columbus.)

ANGUILLA ➔ This island is where celebs come to swap paparazzi for privacy. Spot them biking around Island Harbour on the east end, having dinner at roadside Picante on the west end, or sipping sunset drinks at Viceroy (Sandra Bullock is very nice, by the way). 2

Martinique


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DEBBIE SNOW; FROM TOP OPPOSITE: MICHAEL GRIMM; JON WHITTLE; ZACH STOVALL

Summertime means low season. Translation: an even better chance to have these laid-back locales and secret spots all to yourself.

SABA

CHILL

You’ll find no franchises or shopping malls on the “Unspoiled Queen of the Caribbean.” This rock island is just a 12-minute flight from neighboring St. Maarten (on a plane the size of a sofa), and has grown into a favored haunt of divers and hikers. Low-key cred: The island’s (only) airport boasts the world’s shortest commercial airline strip.


CT+L 365 JULY

Furry, Majestic, Wasted Get up close and personal with our favorite Caribbean critters. 1

sWiMMing Pigs THE BAHAMAS

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drunkEn MonkEYs

FriEndlY Jaguars

suntanning iguanas

sCrEaMing MonkEYs

soCial FlaMingos

The vervet monkeys may have started out getting their rocks of on fermented fruit lying on the island’s forest foor, but now they’ve graduated to a much easier route: stealing drinks from nearby beach goers.

Junior Buddy is a 3-yearold big cat and resident of the Belize Zoo whose precociousness knows no bounds. He’s been known to get up close and personal with visitors and even do a somersault or two for crowds.

Drivers beware: Watch out for these coldblooded creatures of to the sides of the road. Sometimes they’re so preoccupied working on their tan they don’t realize how close they come to being road kill.

Head inland to the crumbling Maya ruins at daybreak, and you’ll unmistakenly hear the howler monkeys. Their treetop serenade sounds like the soundtrack to World War III. That, or the coming of a Zombie apocalpyse.

For $99, you get a day pass to Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino’s private island — one of Aruba’s few private beaches — and the chance to hang with wild pink f amingos. They’re roaming free and ready to mingle. — kh

ST. KITTS

BELIZE

IT ’ S TH E

a

CAYMAN ISLANDS

BELIZE

ARUBA

SPOT SEA TURTLES IN NEVIS

Few things are cuter than a baby sea turtle, except the prospect of watching hundreds of the little sea-green nuggets crossing the shore from their nests to the sea. It’s a great time to visit the Four Seasons Nevis, which has partnered with the Sea Turtle Conservancy to give guests an insider’s look at the turtles’ brave new world through guided beach tours. The hotel even sponsors six trickedout turtles you can follow in real time via GPS tracking.

perfect b

TIM E TO

PIG: KIP EVANS/ALAMY; DRUNKEN MONKEY: FRANK STAUB/GETTY IMAGES; JAGUAR: JUDY BELLAH/ALAMY; IGUANA: ISTOCK/PHOTOTREAT; SCREAMING MONKEY: STEPHEN ALVAREZ/GETTY IMAGES; FLAMINGOS: ISTOCK/VANWYCKEXPRESS; TURTLE: SHUTTERSTOCK

Theories vary about how they got there — dropped of by sailors who intended to eat them later, castaways from a shipwreck. Regardless, the swimming pigs now dominate talk of Big Major Cay in Exuma. Just remember: They’re still wild.


Calabash Cove is an idyllic beachfront boutique resort on the world’s most romantic island. Expansive sea views, a serene sanctuary and a tranquil spa distinguish this luxury hotel, a resort that embraces the best of the past. Each of 26 suites has its own Jacuzzi and high-end amenities. The 9 Balinese Water’s Edge Cottages have their own pool.

WATER’S EDGE COTTAGE WITH POOL

SWIM UP JR. SUITE

SUNSET OCEANVIEW JR. SUITE

INFINITY POOL WITH SWIM UP BAR

A romantic resort on the most romantic island in the Caribbean, an ideal location to tie the knot. Bring friends and we will celebrate your wedding free of charge* *10 couples all-inclusive for 5 nights or longer.

W W W. C A L A B A S H C O V E . C O M 800-917-2683


CT+L 365 JULY

WELCOME TO THE AMERIBBEAN

Speak English and pay with greenbacks. This Fourth of July, we spotlight four locales that are as close to the monster truckin’, Buffalowingin’ US of A as it gets. How American is it?

Technically speaking, it is America: It’s a U.S. commonwealth over which Congress has legislative power. And it wants to be more American: In November 2012, 61 percent of Puerto Ricans voted in support of statehood status. Getting there It’s relatively close (less than three hours from Miami; less than five from Chicago), and passports aren’t required. Once

you’re there You can ask

where the ba–o is in English, and use the greenbacks in your wallet. If you want to eat kinda-sorta American, ask for lechón, smoky barbecued pork that comes piled high, and a Medalla, an American-style lager. u.s. Virgin islands

How American is it?

There’s a Home Depot and a Kmart. Does that answer your question?

FROM LEFT: SHUTTERSTOCK; ZACH STOVALL

PuErto riCo

EXPLORE ALL THE WAYS TO ENJOY YOUR STAY GET AWAY FROM THE EVERYDAY

• The Radisson Fort George Hotel & Marina features 102 rooms, most with a view of the Caribbean Sea. • Business Class rooms and 3 Hour Express Laundry • To Keep you comfortable, Sleep Number Beds are available, WiFi to keep you connected. • Business Center, Tour Desk and Fitness Center. • 2 restaurants, a bar, café, 2 pools, whirlpool, and spa.

Radisson Fort George and Marina Tel: +1 (501) 223-3333 amin.dredge@radisson.com radisson.com/belizecitybz

Fort GeorGe Hotel and Marina


Getting there You can

make it from Boston to the USVI in about four hours. And as with Puerto Rico, you can leave your passport in your underwear drawer. Once you’re there No Rosetta Stone to practice, and the ofcial currency is the U.S. dollar. If you’re missing the craft beer back home, try a St. John Brewers Island Summer Ale, which goes down easy on a hot beach. And if you like the view, why not stay awhile? As in, permanently. No visa is needed to work here. British Virgin islands How American is it? We beat the pants of the Brits. Today, the BVI uses Uncle Sam’s currency. Anyone feel

like chanting three letters over and over? Getting there While you’ll need a passport to get out of the airport, the Englishspeaking locals, availability of charter boats and plenteous beach bars all make it well worth the time spent in line. Once you’re there Check out the Firecracker 500 regatta, taking place July 4th weekend on Nanny Cay. turks and CaiCos

How American is it? Chris-

topher Columbus came across this island chain during his 1492 voyage. Not exactly a reason to fy the stars and bars, but close enough. Getting there It’s so close to Miami you could almost swim there,

if it didn’t mean showing up with a soggy passport. Once you’re there Twelvemile Grace Bay Beach and the slew of its luxury beachfront hotels won’t be easy on your wallet, but luckily they do take dollars, so at least you won’t lose any scratch in a currency conversion. — zs

USVI Leave your

passport back in your underwear drawer. There’s no Rosseta Stone to practice, and the island’s ofcial currency is the U.S. dollar.

BLUE HAVEN

RESORT & MARINA G AT E WA Y T O T H E T R U E T U R K S A N D C A I C O S Blue Haven Resort and Marina, quietly tucked away in the Leeward area of Providenciales, is ideally located near some of the best water sports and island hopping excursions, the perfect gateway to experience the true Turks and Caicos. Three dining venues with a distinctly different character, designed to appeal to guests at any time and for any occasion, make Blue Haven a veritable Dining Destination in its own right.

B L U E H A V E N T C I . C O M • C O N T A C T @ B L U E H A V E N T C I . C O M • + 1 . 8 5 5 . 3 1 8 . 8 0 2 9 (toll free from USA and Canada)


CT+L 365 JULY

It’s Too Hot for Clothes — So Get Naked!

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hotEls

➔ It’s topless only — no full nudity — at the Eden Pool, part of Punta Cana’s Hard Rock Hotel, but the swimup bar, cabanas and ample lounge seating make up for that small restriction. Couples Resorts offers two properties in Ocho Rios, Jamaica: the modern Tower Isle and the rustic, cliff-side Sans Souci. Both offer beach areas where topless sunbathing is allowed, and private sections that guests must be nude to enjoy. Even au naturel weddings are welcomed at Hidden Beach Resort in Riviera Maya, Mexico. This nude property includes yoga sessions, ping-pong and nightly theme parties, including a body-painting soiree.

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BEaChEs

➔ Something about the boat crossing from St. Maarten to the satellite Pinel Island makes it feel exclusive and private. Wait staf from Restaurant Le Karibuni ofer drink service to those sunning in the nearby lounge chairs. Anse de Grande Saline is among St. Barth’s most popular beaches, where all ages take part in all stages of undress, soaking up the sun at this undeveloped beach. It’s a 10-minute walk from the parking area, so you’ll need sturdy shoes. The only nude beach on A ntig ua, Hawksbill Bay is near Hawksbill Bay Resort, but like all beaches on-island, it’s public. Note it’s not easily accessible and lacks food — thus its privacy.

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CruisEs

➔ The destinations and chartered ship vary each February for Bare Necessities’ Big Nude Boat cruise, but the all-accepting vibe and nonstop fun do not. Polite conduct, including a no-photo policy, is guaranteed by the staf (of which this writer is part). What isn’t? Tan lines. — bm NAKEDOLOGY 101 *Don’t stare — eye contact only. *Wear a hat with a logo or a

loud accessory to help kick-start conversation. You’ll be surprised how tricky striking up a chat can be with no clothing on. *You won’t have pockets, so plan for a way to carry keys, money, etc. Bring a lanyard, wrist pouch or, if you must, a fanny pack. *You won’t feel fat. Clothes are evil. You wouldn’t have a mufn top if it weren’t for jeans. * Nudists don’t look a certain way, which means anyone is welcome.

FROM TOP: NORDICPHOTOS/ALAMY; PHOTOALTO/ALAMY

A staffer for a nude cruise line (yes, they exist) takes us to the hottest beaches, hotels and cruises for shedding your clothes — and inhibitions.


During al 2014… Enjoy Cacun at it’s best WITH

RESORT CREDIT

For any booking of fve nights or more at any room category or three nights at Grand Club Suites(*).

Resort credits ar designed to enjoy in different experiences at resort´s spa, restaurants, bars and more…

“HOST 2014”

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LE BASILIC

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festamericanagrand.com coralbeachcancunhotel.com


CT+L 365 AUGUST

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DoMiniCan rePuBliC

triniDaD

Master blender Alan Smith at Barbados’ Mount Gay warehouse

Rum Wars National Rum Day (Aug. 16) inspires a visit to the eight top rum-producing islands for a clash of the spirits.

SIPPING ETIQUETTE There’s the “proper” way to sip rum: a tulip-shaped cognac glass, one cube of ice (if you must), smelling, swirling, and examining streaks (legs) — the thicker the streaks the older the rum. Then there’s rum etiquette in the Caribbean’s rum shops, where rum arrives in a fask, alongside a bowl of ice, a plastic cup and a can of Coke. Sure, it’s less formal, less refned, but watch yourself. a rum shop isn’t so much about how you sip but how you lime, or socialize. Rum shops aren’t for the meek. Brush up on politics, cricket, or better, just skip the Coke. 52

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This twin-island nation is home to angostura, the largest distillery in the southern Caribbean, and to the world’s most costly rum ($25,000 for a decanter of legacy). If you can try only one angostura’s 1919, at Rise, the rooftop lounge in the capital city of Port of Spain. Sip it slowly with dark chocolate.

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BarBaDos

Martinique

Considered the birthplace of rum, thanks to Mount Gay, Barbados has been producing it since 1703. If you can try only one Mount Gay eclipse Black, straight or with ginger beer. Find it at one of the 1,000plus rum shops scattered around the island, where Bajans gather to socialize and “fire one.” It goes down smooth with a fish cake.

This French-Carib isle has the most active distilleries in the region that make rum straight from sugarcane juice, not molasses. If you can try only one Neisson Rhum agricole Blanc, in a ’ti punch, at Chez Martine, a sunset-only bar in a narrow Sainte-anne side street. Bar food of choice: accras (crispy saltfish fritters).

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Puerto riCo

JaMaiCa

More than 70 percent of rum sold in the States comes from Puerto Rico, including Bacardi, the kind used when the daiquiri and Cuba libre were invented. If you can try only one Bacardi Superior White, in a daiquiri at Nuyorican Cafe, in Old San Juan. It tastes even better when you’re watching live salsa.

The island’s big boy, appleton estate, has been making the spirit since 1749 in the style that has made Jamaica a top rum spot: rich, heavy pot-still rums. If you can try only one appleton estate 12-year-old, for sipping neat. enjoy it at the source, the appleton estate tasting room, with one cube of ice.

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CarriaCou

PanaMa

This Grenadine island has one gas station and 100 rum shops. That’s one rum shop for every 60 men, women and children. If you can try only one Clarke’s Court Special Dark, mixed or neat, at lambi Queen rum shop. Owner Sherwin will suggest the curried conch as an accompaniment. Do it.

Zafra is a perfectly balanced blend of aged Panama rums brought together by a master blender from Cuba. If you can try only one Master Reserve 21. Sip it with your sweetheart in an overwater hut at the San Blas Islands’ secluded Coral lodge, with two pieces of tres leche cake. — AV

TOP leFT: ZaCH STOVall; MOUNT GaY: JaMeS BOaRDMaN/alaMY; BaCaRDI: WHITeBOXMeDIa lIMITeD/alaMY

The DR has major rum cred as the producer of Brugal, the Caribbean’s best-selling rum. If you can try only one Brugal extra Viejo, in a Santo libre (with lemon-lime or club soda over ice) at Boca Marina lounge at Boca Chica. Bring out the flavor by pairing it with a plate of tostones (twicefried green plantains).


T HE 2014

CA L ENDA R

FROM THE EDITORS OF ISLANDS MAGAZINE

ORDER YOUR 2014 ISLANDS CALENDAR FOR ONLY $11.97 Save $2 on each additional calendar!

HURRY! QUANTITIES ARE LIMITED!


Swimsuit Decoder Our expert panel can tell a lot about a woman by her choice of swimwear. Because who’s seen more bikinis than a beach bartender? — bm tHe JuDGes

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look

BANDEAU

BD ➔ The woman who

wears this is most likely from a big city, trying as hard as possible to be trendy. She’s probably traveling with her overweight wealthy boyfriend. MG ➔ I like it! This woman is classy. She’ll order white wine, and once she’s tipsy, a painkiller cocktail. She’s here with her husband — a quirky, arty sort. These are the people I would enjoy talking to. Pw ➔ She’s high maintenance. She orders a vodka martini with three olives.

2

look

TANK TOP

kB ➔ She plays it safe. She

is here with her husband and orders a simple frozen strawberry daiquiri — nothing wild. BD ➔ The girl is from the Midwest. She is likely traveling with family, or out of the country for the f rst time on her honeymoon. But she’s a nice girl. When you f irt, you can say almost anything and she will be fattered. MG ➔ This look is about wanting to be 18 again. I always ID her to get the giggles going.

3

look

FRINGE

kB ➔ This look is sweet.

It’s country with edge; she’s just missing the boots. BD ➔ She’s ordering a sweet, bright-colored frozen drink; there’s no doubt about it. MG ➔ Only a younger woman wears this. From the f rst f ve minutes after meeting her, you will surely know if she’s going to get that bikini moving. Her drink of choice: Don Q rum with a mixer.

kennetH Bowe

Chat ’N’ Chill exuma, Bahamas

Ben Dortona

MiCk GarDner

The William Thornton Floating Bar & Restaurant Norman Island, BVI

Porter williaMs

Island Thyme Salt Cay, Turks and Caicos

SWIMSUITS FROM leFT: aNTON OPaRIN/alaMY; COURTeSY ReeF; PITUSa aVaIlaBle aT PITUSa.CO; a.CHÉ SWIMWeaR aVaIlaBle aT aCHeSWIMWeaR.COM; leTaRTe BY lISa CaBRINHa aVaIlaBle aT leTaRTeSWIMWeaR.COM; a.CHÉ SWIMWeaR aVaIlaBle aT aCHeSWIMWeaR.COM; PITUSa aVaIlaBle aT PITUSa.CO

Fatty’s St. Thomas, USVI


CT+L 365 AUGUST

4

5

7

look

look

look

6

look

SKIRTINI BOTTOM

ONE-PIECE PRINT

ONE-PIECE CUTOUT

STRING BIKINI

BD ➔ She doesn’t start drinking right away, but instead, waits for peer pressure and orders whatever her friends tell her is good. MG ➔ This is a vodka-sodasplash-of-lime kind of gal, and she always tips well. She’s on a couples’ retreat, sailing around the islands with her partner. Pw ➔ Ooh, la, la! Cougar cub!

BD ➔ This woman is traveling with her younger boyfriend. If you want to catch her eye, be younger than he is. MG ➔ kindhearted, no complaining — she’s happy to be in the islands. She drinks whatever I suggest. Her husband orders a beer. Pw ➔ Mature, icy and self-conscious. She’ll order a cosmopolitan and sip it throughout the night.

BD ➔ She’s def nitely sexy but lacks some confdence. Maybe she’s a new mom, probably here with a pack of girlfriends. MG ➔ This look is daring in some ways. I see it on local girls all the time — don’t ask me why. Pw ➔ This looks like she can’t decide between a onepiece or a bikini. She would most likely order a frozen margarita or Jell-O shots.

kB ➔ She feels good about

herself. She’s most likely here with her new husband. Pw ➔ Defnitely hot. Defnitely confdent. MG ➔ This girl wants shots, shots and a side of shots. and they usually let me join them for a round. I don’t expect a tip from this girl, but I usually get one, which is a nice surprise. But the rich guy who owns the powerboat that brought her and her seven friends sure leaves a hefty tip.

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CT+L 365 AUGUST

IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

Swim with Whale Sharks

“We have at least one baby elephant on every boat,” says John Vater of Ceviche Tours, based in Isla Mujeres, Mexico. Vater isn’t talking pachyderms here; he’s referring to the snorkel-muffled squealing that a newbie emits when swimming for the first time alongside one of these plankton-feeding behemoths, which grow up to 42 feet long. The season runs from “just before the full moon of June” to mid-August. During the season’s height, it’s possible to see more than 400. That’s a lot of squealing. — bm

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FROM leFT: MIke VeITCH/alaMY; MICHael OCHS aRCHIVeS/GeTTY IMaGeS

TIM E TO


is it real or is it HollywooD?

It’s back-to-school season, kids. Time for a quiz! Do you know if these islands are real or fake?

1 | Drunken Man’s Cay 4 | BarBeCue Caye Real

Fake

Real

Fake

2 | san Monique 5 | san MarCos Real

Fake

naMe 3 | no Cay Real

Fake

Real

Fake

CraB 6 | Cay Real

Fake

Now put your pencil down and check your work.

1 Real. located about 5 miles ofshore of Jamaica, it’s one of the eight named islets of the Port Royal Cays. 2 Fake. It’s the villainous Mr. Big’s private island in the James Bond movie Live and Let Die, scenes for which were shot in Jamaica. 3 Real. located in the abaco Islands of the Bahamas, this uninhabited sliver of land is a beachcomber’s dream come true. 4 Real. This palm-studded 12-acre islet of the coast of Belize is actually for sale: It’s yours for $1.1 million. 5 Fake. It’s the bananarepublic setting of the 1971 Woody allen fick Bananas, some of which was flmed in Puerto Rico. 6 Fake. It was home to Dr. No, and while the island wasn’t real, aerial images of it used in the movie Dr. No were, thanks to clever cropping of Jamaica’s coast.

Call us at 888-843-2293 or EMAIL: info@tranquilitybayresort.com www.tranquilitybayresort.com


CT+L 365

Five Star luxury at itsbest.

AUGUST

sumptuous

DI N I N G magnificent

FOUR BEERS YOU’VE LIKELY NEVER HEARD OF

WINES elegant

R O OM S

Hotel Restaurant Cigar Company Nassau, Bahamas

(tel)+1242.322.2796 info@graycliff.com www.graycliff.com

1

3

BELIKIN, BELIZE

BUSH CRACK, THE BAHAMAS

It takes Canadian pilsner malt, German hops and a long fermentation period to create this full-bodied brew. Sip it while swinging in a hammock chair at the sand-floor poolside bar at El Secreto resort on Ambergris Caye.

This 3-year-old beer (sold only in 16-ounce tall boys) has a clean taste that belies its 6 percent alcohol content. It’s brewed in Freeport but best enjoyed on a saddleshaped stool in Nassau at Atlantis’ Virgil’s Barbecue restaurant.

2

4

BIERE LORRAINE, MARTINIQUE

STAG, TRINIDAD

Sweet and malty, this brew is almost a century old and sold exclusively on-island. Try it on the sand at Le Petibonum chef Guy Ferdinand’s rocking beachfront restaurant in the village of Le Carbet with his signature pork Colombo.

Launched on Carnival Friday in 1973, this 40-year-old, bitter, bold, European-style sud is marketed as “the man’s beer.” Grab one (or three) on the sand at Richard’s on Maracas Beach, along with the island’s best bake and shark. — SGG

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: ZACH STOVALL; COURTESY BAHAMIAN BREWERY & BEVERAGE; COURTESY TOURISM DEVELOPMENT COMPANY OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO; COURTESY STEVE BENNETT/UNCOMMONCARIBBEAN.COM; COURTESY BOWEN & BOWEN, LTD.

Kalik, Carib and Red Stripe are the A-listers, but they aren’t the only suds worth a swallow. In honor of International Beer Day (Aug. 1), here are five under-the-radar local brews.


FLY OUT FREE! Visit www.MyOutIslands.com Call 1-866-689-5505

GRAND ISLE RESORT & SPA

PIGEON CAY CLUB

EXUMA

CAT ISLAND

ANDROS

Exuma, Bahamas. Lavish in casual luxury. Reconnect seamlessy. This spectacular oceanfront resort offers 1-to-4-bedroom villas with spacious living areas, gourmet kitchens, high-end amenities, and extraordinary views. 866-380-5213 • 241-393-2841 • www.grandisleresort.com

A remote piece of paradise, the cottages offer the ultimate in seclusion and breathtaking views. Located steps from a private 3-mile stretch of white, powdery sand beach. 242-354-5084 • www.PigeonCayBahamas.com

Our luxury boutique resort on South Andros Island is an idyllic place for an amazing escape. Relax on the private, white sand beach or enjoy activities such as diving, snorkeling, fishing, and canoeing. 786-374-2442 • 242-225-6871 • www.tiamoresorts.com

FERNANDEZ BAY VILLAGE

SMALL HOPE BAY LODGE

HALVORSON HOUSE VILLA RESORT

CAT ISLAND

ANDROS

CAT ISLAND

Discover the breath taking beauty and relaxed atmosphere of Fernandez Bay Village. 12 beachfront cottages on a mile of sugary white sand, outdoor dining, tiki-bar, water sports. 800-940-1905 • 954-474-4821 www FernandezBayVillage.com

Andros Island, Bahamas. Totally All Inclusive! Celebrating 50 years! 21 Beachfront Cottages. Diving, Snorkeling, Fishing and More... Packages Available. 800-223-6961 • shbinfo@SmallHope.com www.SmallHope.com

Cat Island’s newest destination. TripAdvisor 2013 Certificate of Excellence Winner. Romantic, serene, and simple. Ideal for weddings and honeymoons as well as family getaways for those who want to reconnect. 6 villas on a secluded beach. Restaurant on-site. 242-359-9500 • www.HalvorsonHouse.com

BIMINI BIG GAME CLUB RESORT & MARINA

STANIEL CAY YACHT CLUB

VALENTINE’S RESORT & MARINA

BIMINI

EXUMAS

HARBOUR ISLAND

Adventure for the Entire Family! Resort, Marina, Fishing Center, Watersports Center and PADI Dive Center. Big Game Bar & Grill, Vegetarian and Gluten free menu. 800-867-4764 • 242-347-3391 Reservations@biggameclubbimini.com www.biggameclubbimini.com

Soothe your body, mind and soul with small island charm. Your balcony will literally overhang the clearest waters in the world. Come experience the Exumas. 954-467-8920 • 242-355-2024 info@StanielCay.com • www.StanielCay.com

Real Island Luxury Awaits Your Arrival. Each luxury suite is equipped with a full kitchen, a spacious patio, and incomparable décor. Every detail is a stroke of design genius - from the fabulous fabrics that ribbon throughout the suites, to the sunken tubs in our marble bathrooms. 866-389-6864 • www.valentinesresort.com

STELLA MARIS RESORT CLUB

TREASURE CAY BEACH, MARINA & GOLF RESORT

LONG ISLAND

Superb beaches and water sports; beautiful roomscottages-villas; attentive services, and many complimentary activities. On tranquil Long Island, in the southern Bahamas. 800-426-0466 • 242-338-2051 reservations@StellaMarisResort.com www.StellaMarisResort.com

ABACO

“One of the best beaches in the world” 3.5 miles powder white beach,* Unspoiled & Uncrowded * Championship Golf * Fly Free Specials * 3 Bars & Restaurants* 150 Slip Marina * Watersports* Scuba/Snorkeling/ Fishing Charters 800-327-1584 • www.TreasureCay.com

TIAMO RESORT


CT+L 365 SEPTEMBER

IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

Plan your Carnival Trip TIM E TO

JEN JUDGE (8)

Trinidad’s Carnival isn’t just a party. It’s the ultimate escape ... from yourself. In a costume, a dance, a free-for-all parade — the festivities may start in February, but preparations begin now.


It takes six months for the adrenaline rush of Carnival in Trindad and Tobago’s Port of Spain to depart your veins and the frenzied soca beat to stop thumping in your brain. (That sound system on the back of a semitruck? It’s meant for a stadium.) It also takes six months to plan. With the legendary fest slated for Feb. 16-17, 2015 , you’d better start now. A hotel is key, but the number of stars it carries isn’t: You won’t spend much time there. But you’ll want sleeping quarters close to the Queen’s Park Savannah because you’ll likely end up chipping — dancing while walking — back.

Carnival is always fi ve days before Ash Wednesday, so fi nd fl ights that get you in Thursday and out a week later. Playing mas with a band — parading with an organized group of revelers — is Carnival’s core. Allinclusive costumes — marching positions — including drinks, food, headdress and a very skimpy outfit, are unveiled in August and September (watch sites like carnivaltribe.com). They often sell out by October. Get moving, because gyrating in the streets with 200,000 of your closest friends in their bedazzled undies never felt so good. — zs


CT+L 365 SEPTEMBER

Kick cold season with these secret bush-medicine brews.

2

the

O N LY PL AC E

where @

You Can Stay in a Treehouse with air-conditioning and a minibar

Get high — vertically speaking, that is — at Secret Bay on Dominica, which ofers treehouses that wouldn’t look out of place if you dropped them in Malibu: Think giant Jacuzzi tubs, 360-degree verandas and a well-stocked wine cooler. The compound was designed by award-winning architect Fruto Vivas to minimize environmental impact and maximize privacy, so you can vacay like a movie star — a movie star with a sizable budget but small carbon footprint. 62

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

lot more than a dose of Sudafed (no ofense, Johnson & Johnson). Ask for the bush lady on Great Exuma in the Bahamas’ Out Islands and you’ll meet Lily Mae Rolle, whose garden is a collection of cures. The most versatile plant answers to many names, including life leaf, miracle plant or, to botanists, kalanchoe pinnata. Only the leaves fresh of the plant will do to stave of a cold: To make the tea, boil them for no more than five minutes. It’s a remedy passed down from her grandmother. It’s the leaves, not the fruit, that hold the cure, says Rolle. This is true for the tamarind plant (nature’s answer to asthma) and the soursop tree. Tea from soursop leaves allegedly alleviates high blood pressure and even cancer. One of her neighbors was supposedly sent home from the doctor’s ofce when his prostate cancer was deemed terminal. Instead, he turned to tea. That was a year ago. Today, all traces of his cancer have evaporated, says Rolle. In Belize, the flu antidote is called bitters, which you’ll likely spy in an unmarked bottle at the end of any bar shelf on the island. The base is rum; the infusing herbs vary. The most common ingredient is bark from contribo, aka the pelican flower, which smells like meat gone bad. In Western medicine, our vitamins are shaped like cartoon characters and our tonics taste like candy. But here, a cure is as much about mystery and faith as it is about wellness. — bm

FROM LEFT: COURTESY SECRET BAY DOMINICA; SHUTTERSTOCK (2)

I LIKE BUSH CURES A HELLUVA


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Š2014 Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. All rights reserved. Westin is the registered trademark of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., or its affiliates.


CT+L 365

THINK PINK

The pinkest month of the year inspires a tour of blush-colored beaches. I scoop up a handful of Horseshoe Bay’s famous sand to examine it more closely — sure enough, it’s flecked with pink particles left behind by foraminifera (tiny marine creatures with pink shells). Bermuda isn’t alone in its blushing beaches. At just 3 miles long, Harbour Island, Bahamas, hardly registers on anyone’s radar — except for its coralhued coast. Bed down at Pink Sands Resort, whose staf will happily pack you a picnic to enjoy on a deserted patch of pink earth. If it’s novelty you seek, ride The Crane’s glass elevator down to its eponymous pink beach on Barbados. Even more exclusive is the nine-room Lighthouse Bay Resort on the remote island of Barbuda (stay more than six nights, and you’ll earn a free helicopter transfer from Antigua). The pink-tinged sand here is so fine, Barbuda exports it to some of the world’s top hotels. — eh

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FROM LEFT: ZACH STOVALL; RIBBON: SHUTTERSTOCK; BEN NOTTIDGE/ALAMY; ZACH STOVALL (6)

OCTOBER


IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

TIM E TO

Devour Chocolate on Saint Lucia

This month, the home of the Pitons celebrates the role cacao has played in its history and transforms into a Snickers-y Shangri-La. All of it is part of the island’s Chocolate Heritage Month. Take a plantation tour of one of the grand cacao estates, and learn how to taste chocolate like a pro. (Scarfing it alone in your car? Not the way.) For accommodations, stay at Hotel Chocolat, where you’ll be covered in chocolate during cacao massages, and dine on sweet cuisine at Boucan, like mushroom risotto with cacao nib oil or citrus salad cloaked in whitechocolate dressing. — hk

SEE A BIOLUMINESCENT MUSHROOM

Hiking after sundown can be treacherous, but it’s worth it to witness one of nature’s most psychedelic oddities: the bioluminescent mushroom. This wonder grows only in humid tropical settings and is best seen in reduced light, making undeveloped Saba — the satellite island of St. Maarten — an ideal setting. Dimitri Deheyn, a biolume expert, advises strapping on a headlamp on a moonless night after a recent rainfall. “The mushrooms glow a nice, deep green that’s easy to see,” Deheyn says. Deheyn spearheads such hikes as part of Sea and Learn, Saba’s month-long educational festival held each and every October. — BM

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 0 1 4

65


KILLER CREATURES What’s a little lost sleep worrying about these menacing buggers? You’re on vacation. Sleep in tomorrow.

1

The Phobia Fixer

THE BEST WAY TO RID YOURSELF OF A FEAR IS TO FACE IT HEAD ON.

66

Fear of: THE DARK (achluophobia) Try: NIGHT DIVING, BVI On the RMS Rhone, swimming through the hull of a submerged ship in the eerie stillness of night, your dive light will become a paintbrush, revealing the coral-covered skeleton of a broken hull against the charcoal canvas backdrop of midnight. The shapes moving just out of sight are giant cubera snapper and silver trevally, but who can be sure? Bring on the ghost stories.

Fear of: FLYING (aerophobia) Try: JET-WASH SHOWER, ST. MAARTEN Blown across the sand by the jet wash of a 747 on takeof isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, yet thousands flock to Maho Beach to grip the chain-link fence separating the strand of sand from the Princess Juliana International Airport runway. As jets pass just overhead, the daredevils and juststupids are bounced down the beach into next week.

Fear of: HEIGHTS (acrophobia) Try: CANYONING, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC Tell people you jumped of the Big Bastard this morning and they’ll think you have a tall son you’ve never mentioned. The world’s best canyoning — climbing up, rappelling down and jumping of waterfalls and sheer canyon walls — can be found in this island. And when you’re not clinging to the side of the a clif, canyoning also ofers up some of the region’s best jungle views.

Fear of: BATS (chiroptophobia) Try: HIKING, TAMANA CAVES, TRINIDAD Vampire bats have long struck fear into the human heart, so it seems totally rational to wander into a cave packed wall to wall with them. Think of the caves as the Match.com of thirsty little winged mammals: Estimates put the local vampire-bat population in Tamana at over a million. In the caves, it feels like far more.

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

named aquatic creature is quickly becoming the king of the Caribbean Sea after escaping from an enclosure somewhere between Florida and the Bahamas and breeding at an uncontrollable pace. With no known predators, it can both decimate a reef by eating juvenile fish and unleash quite a sting on any human who gets too close.

2

BOTFLY, BELIZE When the local guide tells you to cover your arms and legs, it’s to protect you from the legendary botfly. This charming little bugger takes a page right out of an ’80s horror movie: It lays eggs on mosquitoes or houseflies that can transfer to your skin upon contact. A few days after the eggs hatch, you might notice something moving under your skin. It’s a worm. It’s inside of you. Bug repellent anyone?

3

POISON DART FROG, JAMAICA There are

better ways to get high than licking toads. The Jamaicans found this out early on, as dart frogs are native to this isle. These amphibians secrete a poison from their skin strong enough to kill a man 20 times over. They’re also beautiful, so don’t fall prey to the “ooh, pretty” thing. — JW

FROM LEFT: HEMIS/ALAMY; LIFE ON WHITE/ALAMY; SHUTTERSTOCK

Canyoning in the Dominican Republic

LIONFISH, GRAND CAYMAN The aptly


CT+L 365

CT+L

OCTOBER

Who needs zombies and goblins when there are vampire bats and worms that live under your skin. We highlight the freakiest, shriekiest attractions and activities the region has to ofer.

SCARY

FEAR OF SHARKS (GALEOPHOBIA) FREEP ORT, BAHAMAS

Who hasn’t looked at shark-infested water and thought, “I’m definitely going in there”? Probably not most people, but if you’re one of the brave few who like rubbing pectoral fins with the ocean’s apex predators, Freeport and its tiger sharks are waiting for you.


4

5

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC IMAGE COLLECTION/ALAMY; PATAGONIK WORKS/ALAMY; AURORA PHOTOS/ALAMY; JAMES LOZEAU; ETHAN DANIELS/ALAMY; BELIZE TOURISM BOARD

1

CT+L 365 2

NOVEMBER


3

The SandBucket List

Next-level adventures to do before, well, you know.

1

Dive into Dominica’s Champagne Reef and you’ll

see what looks like steam rising from the cracks: This 90-degree, nutrient-rich water feeds a unique orange sponge that thrives here: It looks as if thousands of orange candles have been left burning unattended.

Technically any cloudless western horizon in the Caribbean will do for spotting the green flash at sunset, but fi rst-timers will fi nd better odds in a place like the Bahamas Out Islands. Next you’ll need patience, which comes easier with a cocktail in hand — they’re called sundowners for a reason. Rest your eyes until seconds before the sun disappears.

2

Some people are naturals when learning to rip; some simply follow directions. The instructors at Swell Surf Camp in Cabarete, Dominican Republic, acknowledge that learning styles vary, and they’re patient. When the surf dies down, retire to the MTV Real Worldlike crash pad, where the play continues with the pingpong table, pool and impromptu dance floor.

3

Ian Anderson opened the Caves Branch Jungle Lodge in Belmopan, Belize, 22 years ago: All this time, his team has been one-upping itself with rainforest adventure oferings. Tubing through the cave network is the most popular experience — anyone can do it — but those with a higher degree of fitness and daring should tackle the Waterfall Cave Expedition. It’s a two-mile hike to the heart of the cave lit only by headlamps.

4

You’ll fi nd a greater number of whale-watching tour operators on Grand Turk, but puddle-jump to Salt Cay to fi nd the country’s true humpback hot spot. Here, the water is so thick with whales, encounters are pretty much guaranteed.

5

Guests don’t learn the precise whereabouts of Costa Rica’s Finca Bellavista Sustainable Treehouse Community until they book. It’s a private, of-the-grid sanctuary without power or telephone — and the owners intend to keep it that way. The sky-high dwellings are rustic afairs connected to a web of zip lines that link the community: This is the Sky Trail. These perches are the closest you can get to untouched rainforest and its curious fauna, including iguanas and monkeys. — bm

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CT L 365 CT+ NOVEMBER

MOVABLE FEASTS

THANKSGIVING TO GO! OUR TOP FOOD TRUCKS KEEP LINES MOVING, PRICES LOW AND TASTE BUDS SATISFIED.

HUNGRY’S GOOD FOOD TRUCK, ANGUILL A ➔ Irad Gumbs and

Alfonzo “Papi” Hodge have been running their jungle-painted truck since 2004. Order the bull foot if you’re feeling bold, or the conch soup for a safer bet. Location: Outside the Anguilla General Post Office in the Valley.

his sous-chef son readying for college, restaurateur Hagen Wegerer saw a chance to spend more time kiteboarding and still tend grill. You’ll find him in his wildly colorful cart, flipping burgers (try the friedonion-and-turkey-bacon-smothered kite burger) and lionfish fillets. Location: Atlantis Kite Beach. E L VAG ON , PUE RTO RICO ➔

IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

TIM E TO

Get conched

Timing is everything when it comes to fresh conch. Exhibit A: Shufe up to Show-Boo’s conch-salad stand in Marsh Harbor (Abacos) and it might or might not be open — depends if Show-Boo has his salad ready. Exhibit B: Take a live conch from Cayman waters on Oct. 31 and it could cost half-a-million bucks — the maximum out-of-season fine. November is go time. Your best bets are the annual Turks & Caicos Conch Festival, where wontons, chili and (yes) conch ice cream are on the menu. Or check out Barrel Bar in Ambergris Caye, Belize. During happy hour, the conch ceviche is free.— rs 70

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

Normally, ceviche from a food truck is questionable at best. At El Vagon, it’s the way to go: Ask for the ceviche tacos and take a moment to savor the homemade hot sauce. Location: The corner of Calle Labra and Calle Ribot in San Juan. MISS LUCY’S, ST. CROIX ➔ To

the late-night partiers, it’s called the roach coach. Service starts at 7 p.m. and ends when they sell out of Trinidadian-style pates — a fried pocket of fi lling wrapped in dough. If they still have lobster, order two. Location: On the corner of King and Church streets. — bm

FROM TOP: ZACH STOVALL; MARIA FOREMAN/HUNGRY’S GOOD FOOD; COURTESY OF VAGON; OPPOSITE: ILLUSTRATION BY IKER AYESTARAN

C AC TUS B LUE , BONAIRE ➔ With


u

HOW TO u

BOARD A YACHT IN 5 FLIRTY STEPS

It’s megayacht season in the Caribbean. Why not get an up-close look at one? FIND OUT WHERE TO GO Popular boater hangouts: the Bitter End Yacht Club on Virgin Gorda, BVI; the Staniel Cay Yacht Club in the Bahamas Out Islands. Arrive around sunset. Too soon, and the boaters are still on the water.

1

STEP

WHO TO LOOK FOR He’ll be wearing white-soled boat shoes and a belt with stitched images of marlin, lobsters or marine paraphernalia. His shirt will have a collar.

2

STEP

ACT POLITE BUT UNIMPRESSED when the yachtie tells you how amazing his boat is. If he mentions the name of his beloved and it’s a pun, give little more than

3

STEP

a “hmm.” If he gets more than this while on dry land, he has little reason to proceed. DON’T USE THE WORD “YACHT.” People who own them don’t call them that — it’s not part of the lingo. Don’t call it a ship either. Titanic was a ship. Call it a boat.

4

STEP

5

ONCE ABOARD, “OOH” AND “AHH” A BIT to stroke his ego. You like what you see, but you’re not super impressed. Now decide how far you want to take it. If you’re in for more than the next few hours, look for a nautical chart nearby. Lean over it and ask questions. He may want company for the journey’s next leg. — BM STEP

Beach House Turks and Caicos is the first authentically boutique hotel on Grace Bay Beach. Our luxuriantly playful 21-suite abode overlooks the white dunes, swaying sea grass and azure waters of one of the world’s most beautiful destinations. Our passion for exquisite service and relaxation is matched only by our commitment to spontaneity and can be felt throughout our hotel, restaurant and spa. From suites with names instead of numbers, to surprise tasting menus and a massage on the beach, the Beach House Movement is all about breeziness going into your soul.

no H OTEL

|

socks R E STA U R A N T

+1.649.946.5800

|

|

allowed

SPA

+1.855.318.6990

(toll free from usa and canada)

C O N TA C T @B E A C H H O U S E TC I . C O M | W W W . B E A C H H O U S E TC I . C O M T W I T T E R | FA C E B O O K :

BEACHHOUSEMVMNT


CT+L 365 NOVEMBER

YOUR BUTT HERE

Clockwise from top left: 1 The Sky Beach Club on Eleuthera, Bahamas, tempts beach lovers to stay by the pool. 2 It’s so intimate at the Four Seasons Resort Nevis that you’ll forget you’re at a property managed by one of the world’s hotel giants. 3 Slip into the ocean from your infinity pool at Christophe Harbor in St. Kitts. 4 Sandals Grande St. Lucian is the island’s only all-inclusive flanked by the Caribbean Sea on both sides. 5 The cocoon-style chairs at Sublime Samana, Dominican Republic, call for an afternoon nap. 6 Pull up a chair or two on Grand Cayman’s Seven Mile Beach and you’re just steps away from all the action. 7 Stay in the pool or on top of it at one of only 14 villas at St. Maarten’s Coral Beach Club. 8 Watch the day come to an end at Now Sapphire Riviera Cancun.

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C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: EDDY PATRICELLI (3); ZACH STOVALL; AUDREY ST. CLAIR; ZACH STOVALL (3)

It’s cold where you are. So get of the couch and into one of our favorite beach chairs.


looking for your dream wedding location? Download the Destination & Resort Finder App today. Destination Weddings & Honeymoons’ Destination & Resort Finder is the go-to tool for couples planning a wedding away. Locate the perfect destination and resort around the globe. How it works: • Couples launch the app or log onto destinationweddingmag.com/destinations. • They answer a few simple questions about their ideal wedding locale. • The Finder recommends destinations and resorts that ft their criteria.

Also available on all Web-enabled devices at destinationweddingmag.com/destinations.


CT+L 365 NOVEMBER

THE BOUTIQUE AT VICEROY ANGUILLA ➔ MEADS BAY, ANGUILLA Glam (and pricey) clothing, beachwear, accessories and jewelry from high-end international designers. Our fave fi nd: Tissue-thin James Perse T-shirts, embellished with names of local beaches on the back, instantly telegraph your island insider status. CA R I B B EA N CA N VA S COM PA N Y ➔ CAMANA BAY, GRAND CAYMAN Super-soft cotton T-shirts with vintage travel logos; rugged “Cari-All” canvas totes; and a nifty Caribbean Canine line of leashes and collars. Our fave find: Available in multiple sizes and colors, durable canvas packing cubes keep all the stuf in your suitcase organized and crease-free.

GALLERY OF WEST INDIAN ART ➔ MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA Original paintings and sculptures from emerging and established local and Caribbean artists. Our fave find: “Spotties,” wooden animals painted in vibrant hues and stippled with white polka dots, are the gallery’s signature souvenir (and start at just $20).

To Buy For

Black Friday is here! Instead of a slumber party in a department store parking lot, try these go-to spots for tasteful trip treats.

FLAVORS OF THE TURKS AND CAICOS ➔ GRACE BAY, PROVIDENCIALES A variety of condiments,

confectionery, spices, preserves, rums and cofees, all made with island ingredients. Our fave fi nd: Bambarra Rum, the national tipple, comes in five varieties and even adds its potent punch to a hot sauce.

IT ’ S TH E

ATELIER TURQUOISE ➔ UNION ISLAND, THE GRENADINES Semiprecious stone-and-silver jewelry designed by the owner; Christmas-tree decorations; woodcraft; T-shirts; tote bags; and locally made body-care products. Our fave fi nd: Carriacou artist Georgie Tuson’s calabash gourds, hollowed and painted with island landscapes and vivid abstract patterns, artfully contain stray knickknacks. OLÉ ➔ OLD SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO Original art, canvas espadrilles, vintage books and santos (traditional wooden figurines depicting saints). Our fave fi nd: Pick from the huge inventory of Panama hats that are custom fitted and shaped using a blow dryer and then further personalized with the colored ribbon hatband of your choice. — sgg TIP Many stores will ship your finds directly to your doorstep, so your flight home can remain carry-on carefee. (Just remember to declare your unaccompanied items to customs on arrival.)

PARTY WITH STAR CHEFS

The Turks and Caicos’ Caribbean Food & Wine Festival is all about sharing. Big-name Napa winemakers create pairings for dishes dreamed up by culinary celebs like Iron Chef Beau MacMillan (right) and local masters like chef Wolfgang von Wieser (left). You’ll leave this three-day bender having tried gourmet spins on all the local biggies: ackee, callalloo, conch and lionfish (which even helps the food chain, see p. 66). a

perfect b

TIM E TO

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C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

FROM TOP: ZACH STOVALL (2); STEVE PASSMORE; OPPOSITE: ILLUSTRATION BY IKER AYESTARAN

Gallery of West Indian Art


u

HOW TO u

BARTER SMARTER

HAVE CASH Before you go, get cash in small denominations so you can leverage each and every dollar and avoid asking for change. If you see something you like, ask how much it costs, then put it back down and walk away.

1

STEP

Get what you want without all the haggling.

ENLIST A FRIEND Return to the product you want to purchase, but have a friend nearby. When you approach the vendor with the product in hand, arrange for your friend to say you two need to go. The ofer that follows will be one-time-only.

2

STEP

WALK AWAY Put the amount you’re willing to pay in your right pocket. When you return, reach into your pocket, hold out the cash and say, “I can give you this.” The ofer should feel fleeting. It’s on the vendor to accept the ofer or miss out.

3

STEP

It’s time to unwind Escape the stress of everyday life and embrace the simple joys of living. Here time slows down and there are no distractions. Reconnect with the one you love while attentive staff cater to your every need. Relax on a private white sand beach. Savor gourmet cuisine. Retreat to one of 53 suites and cottages overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Isn’t it time you go beyond relaxation and truly unwind?

Ocho Rios, Jamaica 800.837.4608 www.JamaicaInn.com


CT L 365 CT+ DECEMBER

We do this: Buy potted poinsettias to decorate the house. They do this: Let Mother Nature do the decorating. Tall-as-a-house poinsettia bushes with brilliant red leaves grow wild in Grenada.

IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

TIM E TO

DRINK PONCHE DE CRÈME. IT’S CHRISTMAS! The Caribbean goes all out during the holidays. Just don’t expect treetops glistening or sleigh bells a-ringting-tingling.

We do this: Serve roast turkey with stufng and gravy. They do this: Serve roast pork with peas and rice in Puerto Rico.

We do this: Watch college-football bowl games. They do this: Watch Junkanoo parades in the Bahamas, where elaborately costumed groups with drums, cowbells, horns and whistles dance through the streets. We do this: Hang stockings. They do this: Hang new curtains. Cleaning and sprucing up the house is a Christmas tradition in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Barefoot Cay Roatan, Bay islands

We do this: Listen to traditional Christmas carols. They do this: Listen to Venezuelan-inspired parang in Trinidad. It’s “Deck the Halls” on speed, and “Away in a Manger” with maracas, claves, cuatros, and a furious up-tempo beat. We do this: Drink eggnog and mulled wine. They do this: Drink ponche de crème, eggnog’s high-test island cousin (think 150-proof rum), and spicy-sweet sorrel (a ruby-red concoction made from a plant of the same name) in Trinidad’s sister island of Tobago.

We do this: Pop Christmas crackers. They do this: “Buss” (burst) the bamboo in Saint Lucia. Lengths of dry bamboo are turned into kerosene-fueled “cannons” that let out a deafening boom when ignited. Stand too close and your eyebrows will get singed. We do this: Avoid Grandma’s fruitcake. They do this: Hope Grandma makes black cake. Recipes for this rich, alcoholic confection — made with ground fruit soaked in rum and port or brandy — are closely guarded family secrets in Jamaica. We do this: Hit the sales the day after Christmas. They do this: In Barbados, they hit the beach with a cooler of leftovers. Dec. 26, “Boxing Day,” is a holiday in the English-speaking Caribbean, and considered an extension of Christmas itself. — AV

Relax in a beachfront bungalow on our private island, delight in sumptuous dining, indulge in a massage, disCoveR the incredible coral reefs of our Caribbean paradise. Our luxury bouƟque resort is a world apart – un mundo aparte

www.BarefootCay.com US Toll Free 1-866-246-3706 Info@BarefootCay.com


Four, Three, Two … WHEN IT COMES TO NEW YEAR’S PARTIES, THERE’S AN ISLAND WITH A SWEATY OR SHOE-FREE AFFAIR TO CELEBRATE YOUR WAY. JUST DON’T BE SURPRISED IF SOME ACQUAINTANCES GET FORGOT.

FROM LEFT: SHUTTERSTOCK; ISTOCK/LISA F. YOUNG; ISTOCK/FROZENSHUTTER

FOXY’S TAMARIND BAR, JOST VAN DYKE, BVI ➔ There are so

fireworks sparkling above Gustavia harbor as all the megayachts in port sound their massive horns in unison.

many boats ofshore that anchor lights look like Christmas lights strung across Great Harbour. You can barely see straight, much less figure out how to swim back to yours. The solution: Prescribe another painkiller — which you convince yourself will dull the hangover tomorrow — and dance until the sun comes up.

music is infectious, and so are Cuba libres. You put your salsa moves where your mouth is at the stylish lobby’s Eternal Lounge and let the well-dressed locals show you how Puerto Rico lets loose.

QUAI GÉNÉRAL DE GAULLE, ST. BARTH ➔ Your sweat stains have

PETIT ST. VINCENT, GRENADINES ➔ Your feet are bare and the

soaked through your linen shirt, and Martha Stewart’s dance moves just don’t stop. You toast a disheveled Marc Jacobs aboard Roman Abramovich’s Eclipse and give Lindsay Lohan a wink under a ceiling of

THE CONDADO PLAZA, SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO ➔ Salsa

stars seem brighter than any fireworks display. Breaking waves and the clink of champagne glasses are the only festive sounds you need to ring in the New Year at your private beachside cottage on this private island. — zs


I S L A N D S ’ 2 5th A N N UA L

Photo Contest LIKE US ON

FACEBOOK TO ENTER

Your next trip could be on us. It’s the silver anniversary of one of the world’s best photo contests. This year the Islands Photo Contest will again create a buzz on Facebook. Upload, share and like your favorite island images with us and your friends. One thing hasn’t changed in 25 years: the dream-trip prizes.

SHARE YOUR BEST PHOTOS AND WIN! I SL A N DS.COM/PHOTOCONTE ST

PREMIER PARTNERS


CT+L 365 DECEMBER

IT ’ S TH E

a

perfect b

TIM E TO

B L U E R E S I D E N C E S Aruba

SEE A CELEB

STARS. THEY’RE JUST LIKE US: THEY LOVE THE CARIBBEAN! HERE’S A PEEK AT THOSE WHO HAIL FROM THE REGION, OR OWN A HOME OR (YIKES) A PRIVATE ISLAND (SEE “*”).

ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA:

Eric Clapton, Giorgio Armani, Oprah Winfrey BAHAMAS:

Sean Connery, Johnny Depp*, Nicolas Cage*, Lenny Kravitz*, Sidney Poitier, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Bill Gates, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Eddie Murphy*, Mariah Carey*, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill* BARBADOS: Rihanna BELIZE:

Marion Jones BERMUDA:

Michael Douglas, Catherine ZetaJones, Michael Bloomberg BVI: Sir Richard Branson* CAYMAN ISLANDS: Iggy Pop,

Selita Ebanks

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Oscar

de la Renta, Zoe Saldana, David Ortiz, Alex Rodriguez JAMAICA: Lennox Lewis, Ralph Lauren, Naomi Campbell, Usain Bolt, Damien Marley MUSTIQUE: Mick Jagger,

Tommy Hilfiger

PUERTO RICO: Ricky Martin,

Joaquin Phoenix, Benicio Del Toro ST. BARTS: David Let-

terman, Steve Martin, Johnny Depp, Mikhail Baryshnikov ST. CROIX: Tim

Duncan

ST. JOHN: Kenny

Chesney

ST. MARTIN: Anthony Bourdain

SHUTTERSTOCK (8)

ST. THOMAS: Kelsey

Grammer

TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO:

Nicki Minaj, Billy Ocean

TURKS AND CAICOS:

Bruce Willis, Donna Karan

Escape to Aruba’s coveted Eagle Beach — wide, soft and crowd-free — at Blue Residences. This brand-new luxury condominium resort ofers the ultimate island beach resort experience. The 124 ocean-view rooms, apartment suites and penthouses are spacious, most with fully equipped kitchens and some with a Jacuzzi on your private terrace. Amenities such as an upscale restaurant and bar, a minimart, an infinity pool, a spa and a fitness center will be right on property.

800-728-4910 | bluearuba.com


CT+L 365 DECEMBER

* ANGUILLA

Seaspray boutique’s handmade wooden “rasta head” bottle. * ARUBA

“I Love Aruba” merch from — where else? — the I Love Aruba store on J.E. Irausquin Boulevard. * BIMINI, BAHAMAS

Pick up a loaf of sweet Bimini bread at Taste of Heaven bakery. * NASSAU, BAHAMAS

A box of the sea-grape-, mangoand lime-flavored bonbons from Grayclif Chocolatier. * TORTOLA, BVI

Ceramic “happy bowls” from Aragorn’s Studio in Trellis Bay. * GRAND CAYMAN, CAYMAN ISLANDS

Sweet, spicy gourmet pepper jelly at Foster’s Food Fair. * JAMAICA

The gift shop at Couples Tower Isle has a selection of masks by local ceramicist Gene Pearson. * MARTINIQUE

A bakoua (straw fisherman’s hat) from the Fort de France market. * MEXICO

Cowboy kicks are plentiful and well priced at Roger’s Boots at Cancun International Airport. * NEVIS

Candleholders made from red island clay and fired over coconut husks are bestsellers at Newcastle Pottery.

Zaka masks from Saint Lucia for sale at Aragorn’s Studio, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

* PUERTO RICO

Browse Concalma’s roomy tote bags, which transition easily from sand to city, at the Old San Juan store. * SAINT LUCIA

Zaka’s vibrant totems made from recycled wood and discarded telephone poles (shown left), crafted in his studio in Malgretoute, Soufriere. * TURKS AND CAICOS

Before you go home, step away from the gift shop’s fridge magnets and opt for a must-have memento.

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C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

* TRINIDAD

Silver and gold jewelry made out of steel-pan material from Y De Lima’s store at Piarco airport. — SGG

ZACH STOVALL (4)

A bottle of Sakaja, the hot sauce from Da Conch Shack in Provo.


The Carambola Beach Resort & Spa, St. Croix


CT+L 365 DECEMBER

Move to an Island

ZACH STOVALL

Inspired yet to take the plunge? Here’s where to make it happen. 1

2

3

GO NOW. SERIOUSLY BELIZE English speaking, 2-to-1 exchange rates, friendly immigration policies — and we’re just getting started. Houses start at $75,000 amid iconic beaches, snorkeling sites and Maya ruins. PANAMA Low cost of living, strong expat communities and a pensionado program make residency easy. Prove a $1,000-permonth income, and expats of any age receive discounts on medications, food, utilities and more. ROATAN A beach house runs just $99,000. There’s only one paved road, but islandwide Internet and a handful of nonstop flights to the States keep you connected.

JUST LIKE HOME (WITH A BEACH) ST. THOMAS No immigration, property or language barriers, and retirement is an option, not a mandate. A photography business? Why not. No work permit is needed. There’s even a Home Depot. GRAND TURK A community of expats who sip rum punch every evening at the Sandbar means never missing your post-work happy hour. The island’s welcoming vibe makes the $1,000 annual residence fee feel like a steal. PUERTO RICO The island’s west coast is quaint and safe, and has a large English-speaking population. Nonstop flight options keep the mainland close.

TAKE THE (GRAND)KIDS BAHAMAS Nassau has infrastructure and good private schools, and ofers a cultural melting pot not far from extended family. Cheap flights with border preclearance (read: no Miami customs) make visits easy. ST. CROIX Not as developed as St. Thomas, but just as easy a move. Public- and private-school options exist. Field trips visit seaturtle nests. There’s also a college. CULEBRA A bold ofering, but safe for kids. This tiny Puerto Rican isle boasts low crime, inexpensive property and public schools. Even better, it’s only a 30-minute flight to San Juan. — EP


Our hotel and resort directory highlights the services and amenities of every property in this issue. (Dark shaded areas mean they have it; light means they don’t.)

9

12

11

10

13

14

FIND A HOTEL

15

8

16

7

17

6

5

18

4

19

26

23

25 2 4 23

J I HG F E D C B A

2

41

27

42

26

43

25

29 38 30 37 1 3 36 35 34 33 32

24

8

3

1 2

4

44

39

2 21 2

41

b

0

20

42 43 45 44

45

Hotel Index

19

4

1

5

a

22

17 18

A B C D E F GH I J

16

27

7

0 11 12 13 14 9 1 15

21

2

3

20

6

8

40

8

2

29

39

CHECK THE AMENITIES

30

38

37

A

B

C

Beachfront Water sports Excursions/ tours 84

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

36

35

33

34

32

31

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

Leisure sports

Spa

In-room Wi-Fi

3+ restaurants/bars

Boutique

Kids club/ activities

All-inclusive


G R A N D

C A S E

B E A C H

C L U B

hotel/resort listing

a l l - i n C l u s i V e s , m e g a r e s o rt s , V i l l a s , b e d a n d b r e a k fa s t s , a n d m o r e .

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

Viceroy, anguilla Grand Pineapple Beach, antigua Renaissance aruba Resort & Casino A Stone’s Throw Away, bahamas P  aradise Island Harbour Resort, bahamas

Pink Sands Resort, bahamas Sky Beach Club, bahamas Sandy Lane, barbados The Crane, barbados Lighthouse Bay Resort, barbuda Caves Branch Jungle Lodge, belize El Secreto, belize Las Terrazas, belize Matachica, belize Grotto Bay, bermuda Pink Sands Resort, bermuda Biras Creek Resort, bVi Sunscape, CuraÇao Secret Bay, dominiCa Barcelo Bavaro Palace Deluxe,

The beach is so close, shoes are strictly optional. Emerald green mountains as a backdrop. The turquoise Caribbean Sea at your feet. Could there be any place more charming than this picture perfect cove called the Grand Case Beach Club ? Two powder white beaches. Fresh water pool. Day and night tennis. Delightful dining. Invigorating water sports. Shopping and excursions. Everything your heart desires.

For reservations see your travel professional or call 1-800-344-3016. www.gcbc.com

dominiCan republiC

21 Iberostar Costa Dorado, dominiCan republiC

22 Sublime Samana, dominiCan republiC

23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37

Cotton Tree, grand Cayman Ritz Carlton, grand Cayman Petit St. Vincent, grenadines Couples Tower Isle, JamaiCa Geejam Hotel, JamaiCa Jakes, JamaiCa Jewel Runaway Bay, JamaiCa Rosewood Jumby Bay, JamaiCa Excellence Playa Mujeres, mexiCo Now Sapphire Riviera Cancun, mexiCo Soho Playa, mexiCo Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita, mexiCo Four Seasons, neVis Hix Island House, puerto riCo St. Regis Bahia Beach Resort, puerto riCo

38 Sandals Grande St. Lucian, saint luCia

39 Divi Carina Bay, st. Croix 40 Westin St. John Resort & Villas, st. John

41 42 43 44 45

Coral Beach Club, st. maarten Le Petit Hotel, st. martin Buccament Bay, st. VinCent Carlton Savannah, trinidad Ocean Clue Resorts, turks and

CaiCos

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WITH 825+ FRANCHISEES


ANGUILLA 27, 40, 44, 70, 74, 80 ANTIGUA 13, 25, 27, 28, 38, 50, 79 ARUBA 13, 25, 34, 42, 46, 80 BAHAMAS 13, 18, 20, 24, 27, 30, 33, 38, 46, 54, 57, 58, 62, 64, 67, 69, 70, 71, 72, 76, 79, 80, 83 BARBADOS 13, 20, 22, 28, 42, 52, 64, 76, 79 BARBUDA 64 BELIZE 13, 24, 30, 31, 33, 46, 57, 58, 66, 69, 70, 83 BERMUDA 30, 31, 64, 79 BEQUIA 38 BONAIRE 13, 34, 42, 70 BVI 18, 22, 26, 40, 48, 54, 66, 71, 77, 79, 80 CARRIACOU 18, 20, 52 CAYMAN ISLANDS 13, 28, 33, 44, 46, 66, 70, 72, 74, 79, 80 COSTA RICA 20, 69

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C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

CUBA 34 CURAÇAO 13, 25, 34, 39, 40, 42 DOMINICA 14, 20, 44, 62, 69 DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 14, 18, 22, 31, 34, 50, 52, 66, 69, 72, 79 GRENADA 13, 20, 38, 40, 76 GUADELOUPE 25, 34 MARTINIQUE 20, 44, 52, 58, 80 MEXICO 13, 18, 20, 27, 28, 31, 50, 56, 80 MONTSERRAT 14, 21 MUSTIQUE 26, 30, 79 NETHERLANDS ANTILLES 22 JAMAICA 13, 14, 16, 20, 22, 31, 38, 44, 50, 52, 57, 66, 74, 76, 79, 80 PANAMA 25, 42, 52, 83 PUERTO RICO 13, 16, 20, 22, 24, 27, 28, 34, 38, 44, 48, 52, 70, 74, 76, 77, 79, 80, 83

ROATAN 38, 83 SABA 25, 45, 65 SAINT LUCIA 13, 18, 20, 38, 65, 72, 76, 80 ST. BARTH 25, 50, 77, 79 ST. KITTS AND NEVIS 13, 40, 46, 72, 80 ST. MAARTEN 13, 50, 66, 72 ST. MARTIN 25, 27, 34, 44, 79 ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES 18, 20, 35, 44, 74, 76, 77 TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO 13, 20, 22, 38, 42, 52, 58, 60, 66, 76, 79 TURKS AND CAICOS 13, 30, 33, 48, 54, 69, 70, 74, 79, 83 USVI (ST. CROIX, ST. JOHN, ST. THOMAS) 13, 22, 33, 34, 38, 48, 54, 70, 79, 83 UTILA 38 VENEZUELA 42

Clockwise from top left: Local fishing boats in Aruba; ice cream in Martinique; Saint Lucia’s Pitons; surfshop owner Alexi in Rincon, Puerto Rico; Manzanilla Bay, Trinidad; young windsurfer love on Bonaire.

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: ZACH STOVALL (3); JON WHITTLE; ZACH STOVALL (2)

LOCATION INDEX


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App?

With the Islands Magazine app, you can access all the latest issues and subscribe to Islands. Search “Islands Magazine� in the App Store.


CTL-SSENTIALS If you only learn 12 things reading this issue …

1 Monkeys

steal cocktails on St. Kitts. P. 46

Man’s Cay is a real place. P. 56 3 You can fly

2 Drunken

from

Houston to Grand Cayman in one Godfather viewing. P. 12 4 Aruba is lovely during hurricane season. P. 42 5 The

bartender won’t tell you what’s in a killer 6 Pack a sleeping

bee. P. 36

bag if you’re going to a cricket

match. P. 22 7 Wearing camouflage in Barbados is illegal. P. 22 8 There are no atheists aboard Saba’s departing flights. P. 25 9 The Grenadines have the best ratio of visitors to

swimsuit

models. P. 18 10 Use que lo que — not hola — in the Dominican Republic. P. 14 11 In Saint Lucia, sea moss is known as “island

conch

88

C T+ L S P E C I A L 3 6 5 I S S U E 2 01 4

from Cayman waters in October. P. 70

SHUTTERSTOCK (6)

Viagra.”P. 18 12 Unless you have $500,000, don’t take a live


and experience the wonder that surrounds you.

Explore 500 acres of natural treasure surrounded by an exotic rainforest and a mile stretch of golden beach. Forge lasting memories while you frolic and enjoy the many unique experiences and culinary delights at this world-class resort.

Winter Sale save up to 40%

FroM

$

184* PEr rooM PEr nigHt

inCluDEs

$

100*

FooD & BEvEragE CrEDit

For travel from January 3 - april 26, 2014 & stays of 4 nights or longer. Credit is per room, per stay.

Book By FEBruary 28, 2014

Call For rEsErvations 800.474.6627

WyndhamRioMar.com

*Above rates are EP (room only), per room, per night, for single or double occupancy. All rates are subject to 27.65% Government Tax and Resort Service Fee which are not included above. Children 17 and under staying in their parents room are free. 4 persons max occupancy per room. $100 F&B credit is per room per stay and applies to stays of 4 nights or longer. Offer subject to availability and to change without notice. Offer valid for new bookings only. Cannot be combined with any other promotions, and does not apply to groups. Must be booked by February 28, 2014.


Life special travel happy 2014 bak  

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