If you think you’ve seen one Caribbean island you’ve seen them all, think again. Although popular spots like St. Johns and Antigua are beautiful, the tourist hordes have made finding a peaceful stretch of beach nigh on impossible. For blue skies, quieter beaches and hospitable locals, head to Anguilla. Although a bit more expensive than other Caribbean islands, it’s worth the visit for the plethora of great food options and tranquil beachfront lodgings.
Cap Juluca is one of the oldest properties on the island. Opened in 1988 and purchased by The Belmund Group in 2017, the iconic resort sits on 179 acres of lush greenery, amid frangipani, jasmine and sea grape trees. The whitewashed neo-Moorish design stands out, as does the resort’s attention to service.
The resort spreads out beside Maunday’s Bay; the best beach on an island famed for its phenomenal sandy stretches. Stepping ashore, you’re greeted by your friendly host and shown to your room.
The interiors are also sure to take your breath away, thanks to Belmund’s recent renovation and interior design refresh. Serene whites are paired with soft, pastel-tone fabrics. Outrageously large bathrooms are designed purely for pampering. Colourful flowers and natural botanicals help to bring the lush outside in. Whether you’re relaxing on your terrace or reading on your plush king-size bed, you’ll feel connected to the natural spirit of the island.
Guests are treated like beloved family. All 98 rooms and villas (rates start at $860 for a superior room in the low season to over $2000 for a junior suite during the winter season) face the ocean, even the smallest, which at 700 square feet, isn’t exactly tiny. Opt for the 1,100-square-foot Junior Suite. It has an elevated king bed with white cotton linens and mosquito netting, a massive tub fit for two overlooking a solarium and an expansive covered patio just steps from the beach.
The resort serves a variety of cuisine from “Eurobbean” (a type of European/Caribbean fusion) at high-end Pimms, to pan-Asian at Spice and American at Blue. Pimms is the best option, as you won’t find many places stateside serving similar fare.
Cap Juluca took over managing Temenos Golf Course back in 2010. The $50 million Greg Norman course is the only one of its kind on the island and features dramatic vistas of the sea, numerous elevation changes and challenging holes. The 10th and 16th holes are particularly brutal. Golfers can choose from a number of packages including unlimited golf for a $100 supplement per night, except during high season (greens fees are additional).
If you want a full-blown culinary escape, head to nearby Cuisinart Resort & Spa. Like Cap Juluca, it offers breathtaking views of the ocean, a beautiful stretch of white sand beach and luxurious accommodations. But it’s vastly superior to other resorts on the island when it comes to cuisine. The resort has its own organic garden—featuring black-eyed peas, peppers, pumpkins, okra, soybeans, avocados, guavas, tamarinds, limes and oranges—and an 18,000-foot hydroponic farm, complete with raised beds containing herbs, lettuce and peppers. The produce is used at the various restaurants onsite. Santorini is the best option for dinner, as you’ll delight in the Mediterranean-inspired fresh seafood. Cuisinart also schedules wine and rum tastings throughout the week in the resort’s 3,600-bottle cellar.
Flight information: Anguilla is relatively easy to reach from the U.S. with nonstop flights to St. Martin from several East Coast cities, with short 20-minute water taxi ride.