Sun-kissed in St. Kitts


(eTN) – Imagine reclining in a softly cushioned rattan chair on a private balcony, sipping a cocktail and breathing in the fresh tropical air while looking out over swaying palm trees and fields of sugar cane to the turquoise waters of the Caribbean…

Such scene from a page of a romance novel is now just one flight away to the lovely island of St. Kitts.

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Situated on 35 unspoiled acres, like a jewel bursting with tropical flora and fauna, Ottley’s Plantation Inn is an 18th century sugar plantation converted into an intimate family-owned and-operated inn. It is defined by colonial grandeur where guests are always made to feel at home. Widely regarded as one of the most exclusive and visually stunning places to stay on the island, it boasts an AAA 4-Diamond Award. Its 24 rooms in the Caribbean cottages or Great House are tastefully-appointed.

At the inn’s Great House, spacious guest rooms open wide onto wide nature-kissed terraces. Intimate stone cottages tucked into the surrounding hillsides have private terraces and plunge pools. A full size villa features a huge kitchen/living area and large covered lanai. All guest rooms have spectacular views and are tastefully decorated in British Empire mahogany style or casual contemporary Caribbean furnishings. The plantation rooms are lavished with louvered windows, ceiling fans and air conditioning.

Ottley’s Plantation Inn also boasts a 66-foot pool fed by warm springs nestled into the remaining walls of the old sugar mill. There are winding trails through the adjacent rainforest ravine, the secluded Mango Orchard Spa Retreat, croquet lawn and tennis courts. Adjacent to the pool and sharing the remaining walls of the sugar factory is the open-air Royal Palm Restaurant. In this canopied dining pavilion, the atmosphere is elegant. At the same time, the ambience can also be low-key with the help of the New Island Style sumptuous fayre and the staff is warm and friendly. Ottley’s outlet has been awarded Fielding’s Five Star Restaurant Award for its menu of upscale Caribbean cuisine that blend tastes from around the world.

From this point on the sprawling plantation empire, guests enjoy the dramatic panorama of both the sea and mountains on the island. Hundreds of royal palms tower in the horizon, instantly diminishing all stress and worries. All around, the tropical rainforest paths, lush lawns and garden foliage fuse with bright cotton, heliconia, ginger and rainbow-colored bougainvillea.

Most of St. Kitts’ plantation inns are scattered across most of St. Kitts countryside. These stately ruins of old sugar plantations rise from among the cane fields – a physical reminder of days gone by when St. Kitts was renowned for its sugar production through over 350 years. Many of the elegant plantation houses and their sugar mills have been transformed into charming boutique inns such as Ottley’s, where guests always enjoy serenity and relaxation while engaged in small chat or serious conversation over coffee, high tea or cocktails when watching the sunset from the breezy verandah.

Being on cloud nine has never been this fast since American Airlines launched its non-stop service from New York’s JFK in November 2007. Today access to the plantation’s retreat, this side of paradise, gets even easier across the skies.