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The damage from 2017 hurricanes Maria and Irma lingered after the storms themselves were long gone. Caribbean luxury resorts affected by the storms have spent the year not only repairing damage, but also introducing initiatives and enhancements in order to come back better than ever.
Here’s a look at a range of five-star resorts throughout the region that have bounced back with renovations and rebuilds.
Belmond Cap JulucaBy the end of the year, Anguilla will have made a full recovery after the storms. One of the affected properties, Belmond Cap Juluca, is on track to reopen by end of December 2018. The beachfront resort has undergone a complete redesign that celebrates local culture and provides more access to nature. New amenities and features include a spa and fitness center; a nine-course Chef's Table experience at Pimms restaurant; and a redesign of the resort’s Main House, which offers splendid views over Maundays Bay.
Belmond La SamannaOn St. Martin, Belmond La Samanna is putting the final touches to a $25 million renovation. The resort reports that the endeavor will be complete in time to welcome winter season travelers. La Samanna’s 83 rooms and public spaces have been refreshed with a new pastel color palette. Additional enhancements include a new beach bar with a sophisticated edge.
BodyHoliday Saint LuciaBodyHoliday Saint Lucia has reopened after a multimillion-dollar renovation and refresh. Return guests will find numerous changes, including a pair of new villas, an improved wellness center and fresh takes on guestrooms and restaurants.
Guestrooms have added features such as surround-sound USB speakers and rainfall showers. The two new villas are Villa Lara and Villa Calypso; each has an apartment and a junior suite, allowing clients flexibility in renting either a part of the villa or the complete building. The property’s Asian-fusion fine-dining restaurant, Tao, has added an outdoor deck as well as a wine cellar.
Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton ReservePuerto Rico was particularly hard-hit by the storms and could benefit from tourism dollars. Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, reopened October after completing a multimillion-dollar refresh. All 114 guestrooms and suites have been enhanced, and 300,000 plants have been introduced to restore the grounds to their pre-storm beauty.
Look for the debut of Coa, a reimagined signature restaurant which is set to welcome diners in mid-December. Your clients choosing to vacation at Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, will get the full Ritz-Carlton experience while benefiting the island’s recovery.
Jumby Bay Island When it reopened in October, private island resort Jumby Bay Island — situated off the coast of Antigua — unveiled a range of renovations. These include improvements to its The Jumby Bay Spa, a transformation of the veranda building into an Italian trattoria, a new watersports area called 22 Knots and a new beachfront infinity pool. These renovations top out at $7 million. There’s also been a refresh to the resort’s interior design by Brazilian design firm Anastassiadis Arquitetos, featuring lots of natural wood and a sophisticated color palette of blues, grays and greens.
Malliouhana, an Auberge ResortMalliouhana, an Auberge Resort in Anguilla, will once again welcome guests beginning Dec. 15 and will feature some enhancements. Later in 2019, the resort will debut 11 new beachfront suites, four garden suites and a two-bedroom beachfront villa on Turtle Cove Beach. The Auberge Spa will have six new treatment rooms and a new pool providing ocean views.
Hotel Christopher St BarthSt. Barts was also hard hit by the storms, and the island’s infrastructure — although deeply impacted — recovered quickly. Hotel Christopher St Barth, a 42-room property on the island’s Pointe Milou, reopened two months ago. In addition to repairs and renovations, the property will also introduce three new four-bedroom villas in 2019, with the first of these coming online in January. Each of these villas will have their own private swimming pool.