Begin your romantic rendezvous on enchanting Dominica, a brand new addition to Kuoni's portfolio. Although the beaches are indeed pretty, the real beauty lies inland. We've fallen in love with this island's wild rainforests, rustic, eco-friendly hotels and hidden volcanic coves. You can soak in bubbling hot springs or take a refreshing dip in one of the many waterfalls that don't just look like they've come straight out of a movie, they actually have: many of Dominica's beauty spots were featured in the Pirates of the Caribbean films.
We highly recommend staying at the five-star eco-hideaway, Secret Bay, which has just ten decadent pool villas concealed beneath the forest canopy. Here, you can indulge in uninterrupted time-for-two with couple's treatments in the treehouse-style spa and shared bottles of bubbly on the sunset deck. On Thursday evenings, head to Zing Zing restaurant which transforms into a cosy candlelit love nest complete with an innovative menu, ambient music and rose petals sprinkled across the tables.
After your adventures in Dominica, hop on a short flight over to tropical Saint Lucia. It's easy to see why this island is known as one of the world's most romantic locations due to the spectacular Piton scenery, golden beaches and fiery sunsets. All of these can be seen from every angle at Cap Maison, a clifftop boutique resort that’s made for romance. We love the Kuoni Indulgence Suites that come with exclusive extras such as a couple's massage and a Caribbean cooking class.
When you're not sipping poolside cocktails and gazing at the scenery, stroll through the frangipani-scented gardens, sail the ocean on the owner's Sea Ray yacht and indulge in the gastronomic cuisine at a duo of restaurants. If you're celebrating a special occasion, don't miss the private dining experience at Rock Maison where champagne is zip-wired down to your table in a sparkler-filled basket.
The boutique adults-only hotel, Treasure Beach by Elegant Hotels in Barbados may be small but it packs a punch when it comes to experiencing a true taste of Caribbean life. As well as having a sought-after location on the popular Platinum Coast, you can dine at any of the sister resorts as part of the Elegant Hotels’ dine-around programme. Not that you have to leave your sanctuary to experience the best of local cuisine. At Tapestry, the all-day restaurant, an award-winning chef weaves together a mouth-watering menu of dishes. Before you tuck in, be sure to head to Batik Bar for sundowner hour. You can try a different cocktail each night – we’ve heard the rum punch is the best on the island.
After a week of living it up on lively Barbados, we’ll whisk you away to the Grenadines for a serene stay on a private island. Palm Island Resort & Spa is a little more off-the-beaten-track, but this is exactly why you should go. The island’s yesteryear vibe perfectly captures the essence of what the Grenadines are all about: an authentic slice of the Caribbean. You can completely switch off from everyday life, snorkel among brightly coloured fish in the lagoon or simply sway in a hammock under palms with a book borrowed from the bijou library. But there’s plenty of adventure to be had too. You could spend your morning paddling out on a kayak to spot turtles in the lagoon, and in the afternoon, take a trip to Union Island to browse the fruit markets and colourful shops around the bustling harbour.
Although Dominica is known more for its wild natural beauty and eco-friendly boltholes, luxury hotelier brand Kempinski is changing the game at the five-star Cabrits Resort & Spa Kempinski. You can expect all the mod-cons of a high-end hotel with nods to Dominica’s traditional charm.
The gourmet scene is a real treat. Tuck into fresh farm-to-fork fare in Cabrits Market where, like its namesake, the ambience is reminiscent of a creole market, and there are fun foodie theme nights from surf and turf banquets to the Sunday grill and chill. After nightfall, head to Rumfire Bar for tasty tapas and a few drinks under the stars – there are over 30 spiced rum cocktails to choose from.
After spending time on a relatively undiscovered island, switch up the pace and head to vibrant Barbados for the second half of your holiday. The glorious white-sand coastline is glittering with glamourous retreats but with its striking pastel-pink exterior, Fairmont Royal Pavilion stands out from the crowd. This chic resort is all about laid-back luxury beach life and hugs the shore of one of the best beaches on the coveted west coast.
You’re guaranteed a room with a view as all the refreshed guestrooms overlook the ocean; the balcony is an idyllic spot to sip sundowners as the sky blushes pink. If you’re going all out, opt for a Beachfront Suite and you’ll have a private deck with direct beach access as well as luxurious extras included such as evening canapés, afternoon tea and a dedicated butler on hand to cater for your every whim.
More reminiscent of a stylish private home than a hotel, The House by Elegant Hotels Barbados is an intimate adults-only enclave on the upscale west coast. As the grand wooden doors open to unveil a leafy, tranquil oasis surrounded by lily ponds and bougainvillea-laced buildings, you’ll feel as though you’ve been let in on Barbados’s best-kept secret.It’s all about the personal touches here, from a complimentary jet-lag revival massage in the boutique spa, bespoke activities and top-notch service. Prop yourself on a beach lounger and the friendly ambassadors will swing by with fresh fruit, mint-scented towels and icy bottles of water – they’ll even brush the sand from your sunbed.
For a wow-factor grand finale, we recommend pairing Barbados with Saint Lucia, where you’ll end your Caribbean dream on a high – quite literally. The unique and luxurious Ladera Resort is perched on the edge of a volcanic ridgeline and is the only Saint Lucia resort that’s situated in the spectacular Piton Mountains UNESCO World Heritage Site. You’ll be forgiven for never wanting to leave your suite with its open fourth wall, heated plunge pool and jaw-dropping views. But those willing to come back down to earth can do so with serene spa treatments in the tropical gardens and sampling some of the islands best cuisine in the signature restaurant, Dasheene.
This feature was published on 9th July 2021. The information within this feature is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of publish.