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Top 10 luxury hotels in Barbados
For those seeking over-the-top luxury, shameless pampering and gracious hospitality, it’s hard to top the glitzy and glamorous ‘Little England’ of the Caribbean - Barbados. The island's beautiful beachfront hotels and resorts evoke a wonderful sense of indulgence and opulence, from breath taking pool areas and luxe suites, to innovative restaurants and even private butler services, and offer the ultimate treat for those hoping to splash out on a truly luxurious holiday. Here’s our pick of the island’s 10 swankiest sleeps most worth getting excited about.
Colony Club by Elegant Hotels
The setting: Tucked away in pristine grounds with trees galore, you’ll be facing a white-sand beach on the island’s west coast. The airport is a 45-minute drive away.
The sleep: All 96 smart and spacious rooms at this former 1940’s gentleman's club have coral-stone walls, private patios or balconies, king-size beds (or twins) dressed with deluxe linens, marble bathrooms, and plenty of thoughtful extras. The Oceanview Rooms directly behind the beach are perfectly-positioned for sunset-gazing while the Luxury Poolside Rooms have access to the resort’s lagoon pools that wind through the beautiful palm-filled gardens.
The scene: There’s four lagoon-style freshwater pools with a hut that offers free sun cream to guests, complimentary water sports (sailing, snorkelling, kayaking, water skiing, boogie boards, windsurfing, paddle-boarding), floodlit tennis courts, and a peaceful spa. You can also look forward to post-dinner cocktails at the Plantation Lounge, themed lobster and jazz nights and happy hours at the all-day Sunset Bar & Deck, and sumptuous Bajan-inspired cuisine at the Laguna. There’s also an optional Sunday Buffet complete with carvery and seafood corner.
More information and to book: Colony Club by Elegant Hotels
O2 Beach Club
The setting: This chic Barbados resort on the south coast features a stunning 1000ft white beach, on the far end of lively St Lawrence Gap. The hotel is just a 15-minute transfer from the airport.
The sleep: The resort offers contemporary and stylish rooms and suites with island, ocean, or beachfront views, and boast luxury amenities and private balconies or terraces. The adult-only suites in the sunset section provide access to the river pool and swim-up bar. In the sunrise section, one or two-bedroom suites come with extras like 'Learn To' lessons, such as making Bajan rum punch, for an enhanced experience.
The scene: The five-star O2 Beach Club & Spa offers pure relaxation. Enjoy luxurious rooms, spa treatments, thrilling adventures, and daily activities for an unmatched all-inclusive luxury experience. There’s also the chance to indulge in a variety of dining options, from Bluefin's wood-fired pizza for a relaxed lunch to Sky Terrace's rooftop tapas lounge for cocktails and bites.
More information and to book: O2 Beach Club & Spa
Little Arches Boutique Hotel
The setting: Near the white sands of Enterprise Beach (also known as Miami Beach by locals) on the outskirts of Oistins - the charming fishing village on Barbados’ south coast.
The sleep: There’s 10 ocean-facing rooms and suites at this grown-up playground, all of which are kitted out with plush décor, artist-commissioned watercolours, wrought-iron furniture, terracotta flooring, and four-poster beds. For bragging rights, book one of the more expensive suites that come with a private plunge pool or outdoor Jacuzzi. Please note that this is an adults-only resort and all rooms sleep two guests.
The stay: For wide-eyes romantics, this little hacienda-style charmer has a roof-deck freshwater pool with hammocks, mini spa with beauty treatment menu, and award-winning eatery serving Pan-Tropical fare (a unique fusion of Caribbean, Asian and Mediterranean flavours). There’s also a spacious terrace for end-of-day cocktails as well as complimentary bicycles to explore the local area. But the real deal breaker is the famous 18-hole Barbados Golf Club that’s just a five-minute drive from the hotel.
More information and to book: Little Arches Boutique Hotel
The House by Elegant Hotels
The setting: Overlooking the glistening golden sands of Paynes Beach in St James on the island’s west coast.
The sleep: There’s only 34 junior and one-bedroom suites at this adults-only resort, all of which assure carefully-curated modish décor and lovely sea or garden views. Each comes with a feather-topped king bed (or twins) with luxury cotton linens, bespoke wooden furniture, French doors, and state-of-the-art rain showers. Nice touches in the swoon-worthy Luxury One-Bedroom Suites include a living room, Nespresso machine, two bathrooms, and spacious balcony.
The scene: It’s all about the champagne breakfasts, afternoon teas and evening canapés at this home-away-from-home that’s strictly for grown-ups. There’s a library, 24-hour gym, complimentary motorised and non-motorised watersports, and spa treatments next door at the Tamarind. But what gets all the glory here is Daphne's - the mainstay of Barbados' upmarket dining scene that’s an offshoot of the famous London restaurant. The mostly Italian cuisine is excellent, and there’s also a well-stocked bar for happy hours and pre-dinner cocktails.
More information and to book: The House by Elegant Hotels
The Fairmont Royal Pavilion
The setting: In 11-acres of tropical gardens facing a palm-fringed sandy beach in the star-studded St James. You’ll be on the west coast, just eight miles from Bridgetown.
The sleep: Classic colonial-style décor and soothing hues bring a sense of sophistication to the 75 individually-designed rooms and suites - all of which have terraces or glass-fronted balconies overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Nice touches include a king-size bed, flatscreen TV with DVD player, and good-looking bathroom with walk-in shower and deep-soaking tub. The more salubrious Beachfront Junior Suite comes with a private butler service.
The scene: Everything at this seaside hideaway is upscale without being fussy or flashy. There’s a superb freshwater pool lined with comfy sunloungers, a decent selection of non-motorised watersports, and a 24-hour gym for fitness fans. Elsewhere, you’ll find a Jacuzzi, floodlit tennis courts, in-room spa treatments, and a beauty salon for hair and make-up packages. For eats and treats, there’s The Palm Terrace for buffets and signature cocktails and the poolside Taboras for ingredient-driven cuisine, all-day snacks and sundowners.
More information and to book: The Fairmont Royal Pavilion
Saint Peters Bay
The setting: Nestled on Barbados' north-west coast, this property is embraced by lush tropical scenery, offering breathtaking vistas of the glistening Caribbean Sea.
The sleep: Indulge in the essence of a home-away-from-home experience at this resort, where every luxury amenity is at your fingertips. Immerse yourself in tastefully adorned living spaces, generously proportioned en-suite bedrooms, fully equipped kitchens with laundry conveniences, and expansive terraces for alfresco dining. Enhancing this retreat is the panoramic backdrop, enhanced by a private spa pool, promising an unforgettable stay.
The scene: Saint Peter's Bay Luxury Resort and Residences offers a tranquil seaside escape with a profound connection to the water and abundant family-friendly activities, including a wonderful kids zone. We love the water taxi available – arrive to restaurants in style or enjoy a day out to swim with the turtles. There’s also a gorgeous beach with beach service, and the calming Sandbox Tree Spa just a short water taxi ride away.
More information and to book: Saint Peters Bay
The setting: In grounds thick with palms and frangipani that are just steps from the beach on the north-west coast. Just along the road is Speightstown, Barbados’ second-largest town.
The sleep: There’s 40 newly-renovated suites, all of which are clustered in a horseshoe around the palm-filled garden. Expect colonial-style décor, spacious indoor and outdoor living areas with wicker chairs, four-poster beds, and enormous bathrooms with pretty tiles and walk-in showers or bathtubs. The two best ones (Camelot and Colleton) come with their own rooftop terrace and plunge pool. The only thing missing here is a TV, but that’s not the hugest deal.
The scene: Built as the seaside getaway for a wealthy sugar baron and politician in 1943, the vibe at this candyfloss-pink plantation house is old-fashioned English country-house hotel with a stylish Caribbean kick. As well as a small pool, gym, tennis court and spa, there’s posh drawing rooms for cosying up with a good book or taking afternoon tea as well as a great bar for fine Bajan rums, fresh juices, and anytime cocktails. Most standout, though, is the signature Camelot Restaurant that serves impeccable cuisine and hosts weekly seafood and oyster events.
More information and to book: Cobblers Cove
The setting: In 12 acres of beachside tropical gardens behind a sandy inlet on St James Beach. You’ll be just a short hop from Holetown.
The sleep: Spread around flower-filled and bird-rich gardens, the 50 tasteful rooms and suites assure colourful Caribbean décor, tiled flooring, good-sized terraces or balconies, and plenty of in-room gadgetry. For blow-the-budget fabulousness, the more salubrious new Beach House Suites offer fashion-forward design, striking bathrooms, separate living rooms, large patios with wet bars and sun decks, and media centres with TV, music and movie choices.
The scene: Flaunting its new good looks following an extensive refurb in 2015, this family-run boutique hideaway has been laying on the luxe since the 1970s. There’s two pools (one of which is a brand new sleek lap pool) as well as a gym, two tennis courts, intimate terrace bar, decked sunbathing area, and watersports centre. Further highlights include an award-winning restaurant fringed by koi-filled ponds. There’s no spa, but you can book treatments and use the crystal steam room and hydro pool at Coral Reef Club, the neighbouring sister-property.
More information and to book: The Sandpiper
Coral Reef Club
The setting: Surrounded by 12 acres of flower-filled tropical gardens and an idyllic white-sand beach. You’ll be on the island’s west coast, with Holetown practically on your doorstep.
The sleep: Each of the 88 rooms, cottages and suites set among the pretty gardens reveals elegant plantation-style décor and a homely vibe. All accommodation has wooden balustrades, fretwork, shuttered windows, and private patios or balconies with chaise longues. There’s also king-sized beds (or twins) swathed in Egyptian cottons, large bathrooms with toiletries, and Wi-Fi access. The Plantation Suites and Luxury Cottage Suites have their own private plunge pool.
The scene: The pièce de résistance at this luxurious family-run property is the spa - a four-room sanctuary complete with outdoor couple’s pavilion, crystal steam room, hydro pool, and exotic pampering treatments using Natura Bissé products as well as plants, herbs and fruits from the island. Elsewhere, you’ll find two mosaic-tiled pools, a fitness centre, and complimentary windsurfing, hobie cat sailing, snorkelling and tennis. For culinary thrills, the flagship Coral Reef Club Restaurant offers an à la carte menu that pulls focus on fresh seafood and classic Caribbean cuisine. A year-round casual-elegance dress code applies at dinner.
More information and to book: Coral Reef Club
The setting: Found along the prestigious west coast of Barbados, Sandy Lane is nestled within an ancient waterfront mahogany grove, only adding to its charm.
The sleep: Glamorous and luxurious would best describe these opulent rooms and suites. Adopting a classic Colonial vibe, mixed with lavish furnishings and Caribbean stylings, you’ll feel like royalty whichever room you choose. Gorgeous balconies overlook either the sugary sands or stunning landscaped gardens, and each accommodation is nestled in a secluded location.
The scene: Sandy Lane could easily be described as regal, thanks to its luxurious architecture, and bright and airy lounge areas overlooking the peaceful coast. We love the pool area, framed by rugged rocks and featuring beautiful, cascading waterfalls, and the inviting Beach Bar with unsurpassable views of the sunset. Keen golfers will love staying here, with access to three incredible golf courses - including Sandy Lane's exclusive Green Monkey course, beautifully carved from an old limestone quarry.
More information and to book: Sandy Lane