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Polo Lifestyles: Hotel Renaissance in St Barths

Originally published in Polo Lifestyles magazine, republished with permission and gratitude 

The hotels on St Barths have one thing in common, they are all intimate and sophisticated. We toured the properties below and have some exciting updates to share.

Hotel Le Toiny

Hotel Le Toiny first opened in 1992 and underwent a multi-million dollar renovation in 2015. It is scheduled to reopen again in 2019 following extensive renovations after Hurricane Irma. Le Toiny is located in an area with an abundance of lush natural vegetation. Le Toiny’s 15 villa suites are comprised of 13 one-bedroom villa suites; one junior suite, and La Villa, a three-bedroom villa that includes a master suite and two bungalows. All accommodations offer breathtaking ocean views with a private heated pool. Bleached wood-inspired floors, fine Belgian linens, textured accessories, and handmade furnishings finish the comfortable spaces.

The hotel’s secluded beach has been refurbished and landscaped and features a coconut grove, tamarind field, and pineapple orchard, offering full beach service to hotel guests and non-guests alike, with a small bar and beach loungers in the shade of the paillottes. The beach is accessible by hotel shuttle. And if you can’t get a room there, there, drop into the Toiny Beach Club for lunch. Opened in 2018, this secluded club reminds one of Tahiti. Cooling trade winds and glorious small plates made it an instant favorite.

Hotel Christopher

Located on Pointe Milou  on St. Barth’s northern coast, Hotel Christopher provides luxury-seekers with an intimate getaway. Each of the 42 guest rooms and suites features neutral decor with pops of bright orange throughout and comes outfitted with a private terrace, free WiFi, a minibar and Sisley toiletries.

Visitors leave this Preferred LVX hotel feeling completely relaxed as a result of the property’s isolated location. High-end amenities like the full-service Sisley Spa and the stunning seaside infinity pool are bound to help you unwind, while the two on-site dining venues, Christo Lounge Restaurant and Mango Beach Club, are sure to satiate your appetite after a long day of swimming, sailing, hiking or lounging. Insiders top – drop in to their pool-side bar for cocktails at sunset.

Le Sereno

With only 39 suites and three four-bedroom villas, Le Sereno is especially exclusive. This boutique resort-flanking Anse de Grande Cul-de-Sac’s sands on St. Barths’ northeastern coast- is ultra-chic, with suites displaying bright white hues and dark wood accents. Along with the sumptuous accoutrement, accommodations come equipped with decks with private gardens or pools, free Wi-Fi, Ex Voto Paris toiletries and iPads and Nespresso machines upon request. But even with all of these luxe amenities, guests agree that Le Sereno doesn’t feel pretentious, saying that we were greeted by hospitable staff members.

During your stay, you can stretch across the bay’s chalky white sands or indulge in a refreshing treatment from Spa Le Sereno. When it comes to dining, visitors heap praise on the menu at Restaurant Le Sereno, citing its delectable cuisine, romantic atmosphere and unbeatable ocean views as highlights. What’s more, the hotel is part of The Leading Hotels of the World family, meaning Leaders Club members have access to perks during their stays.

Hotel Manapany

The first eco-resort to open on St. Barths, Hotel Manapany debuted in spring 2018 and is situated on the beach on Anse des Cayes. Electricity here is partially powered by solar panels, and the hotel uses electric cars, produces its own water, maintains a vegetable and fruit garden, and provides towels made from natural products.

The 4.2-acre property houses 43 rooms and suites, all of which include sun decks, mini bars, free Wi-Fi and tea and coffee amenities. Travelers praise the hotel’s cool vibe, comfortable rooms and friendly staff members. Plus, guests have access to two pools, one of which is adults-only, a fitness center, complimentary yoga and Pilates classes, a spa and a shopping boutique. Hotel Manapany also offers two game rooms equipped with video games and a billiards table, and the staff can arrange off-site excursions, such as snorkeling, sailing and hiking.

Hotel Villa Marie

The luxurious Hotel Villa Marie offers boutique, independent villas and suites featuring bright colors and gorgeous views. Treat yourself to elegant french cuisine at the restaurant before retiring with a rum and cigar from the bar. An utterly spoiling mountain-top spot.

Cheval Blanc St-Barths Isle de France

Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France’s white-washed walls and marble foyers feel almost palatial; guests say the breathtaking views of northern St. Barths’ Flamands Beach push this property into the realm of luxury.

And the boutique hotel’s accommodations aren’t too shabby, either. Guest rooms and suites feature bright white decor, hardwood floors and gray, pink or orange accents, while those willing to splurge on a villa will find a private infinity pool and an open-air kitchen. If you can part from your lavish abode, pamper yourself with a treatment at the Cheval Blanc Spa or head to the water for some sailing or kite boarding.

Le Barthelemy Hotel & Spa

The first new construction hotel on St. Barths in 20 years, Le Barthelemy Hotel & Spa started welcoming guests in 2016 and reopened fully in October 2018 after repairing damage caused by Hurricane Irma. The luxury resort is perched directly on the beach, over-looking the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea. Le Barthelemy’s rooms and suites feature garden, lake or ocean views and are decorated in neutral hues of tan and white with pops of green and blue or pink. The property is home to a fitness center and a spa with traditional services and amenities, plus a blow-dry bar, a nail salon and yoga classes.

When it comes to dining, travelers can indulge in French-Caribbean fusion cuisine and take in the views at the al fresco Aux Amis of Le Turquoise. Meanwhile, those looking to enjoy drinks can head to the rooftop bar. Overall, previous travelers were blown away by the hotel’s understated elegance, impressive service and inviting atmosphere. Thanks to its Small Luxury Hotels and the World ties, INVITED rewards program members can cash in accrued reward night vouchers for stays here.

Coming Soon… St Barths Hotels Set to Re-Open in Late 2019

Eden Rock

As the first hotel to open on St. Barths, Eden Rock has been welcoming sun-seeking vacationers for more than 60 years. A-listers like Greta Garbo and Howard Hughes graced this hotel’s hallways; and up until Hurricane Irma, Eden Rock remained just as elegant. The property is scheduled to re-open in late 2019.

Each accommodation is unique, with simple neutral tones and private terraces, and guests describe a stay here as worth every penny. Splurge on a specialty villa and you’ll have access to such extras as a private art gallery in the Villa Nina or a recording studio in the Rockstar Villa.

Eden Rock sits on S. Jean Bay on the island’s northern shore, granting visitors access to pristine sands and a nearby coral reed. When you need a break from the sun, indulge in an in-room spa. Because this is a Relais & Châteaux property, Club 5C members can earn and use their rewards here.

Le Guanahani

Overlooking Anse de Marigot and Anse de Grand Cul-de-Sac from its peninsula perch on St. Barths’ northeastern shore, Le Guanahani entices visitors with its pastel decor and plush cotton linens. Cottages range in size-they are able to accommodate couples and families- and feature hardwood floors, plush furniture and private terraces complete with gardens.

Guests say that this is a great resort for travelers with children: activities like snorkeling, windsurfing and Jet Ski tours cater to all ages. Parents in need of some R&R can retreat to the Spa by Clarins while the youngsters participate in the hotel’s kid-oriented programs.

At the end of the day, sit down to family dinner at Bartolomeo or Indigo, the hotel’s restaurants. And as a member of The Leading Hotels of the World, this property participates in the Leaders Club rewards program. (editors note: after this article was published the hotel announced that its new reopening date would be October 2020)

Hotel Taiwana

Many of the rooms at this beach-front property, which sits at the eastern edge of Flamands Bay, are set high in the hills. But the higher you go, the better the views from your balcony come sunset. Inside, the decor is sleek and supremely comfortable: think wooden floors, white-linen covered sofas, and slate bathrooms. Eight of the 24 rooms also have private pools, which is great for honeymooners. The hotel is just steps from the sand, where there are plenty of white loungers with red towels so that all guests can claim their own piece of paradise.

(editors note: this hotel was purchased by its neighbor Cheval Blanc)

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