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Antigua Dreamin’

Written by: Marisa Byers

Photographed by: Laurette Veres

Very pretty wedding overlooked by the perfect blue water.

Antigua is108 square miles of paradise nestled in the West Indies of the Caribbean. It is a small but mighty island boasting 54 miles of coastline and 365 beaches, one for every day of the year!

The luxurious and tranquil Carlisle Bay Resort is on the island’s southern shore. The all-inclusive beach and spa resort has bright, white sandy beaches and calm turquoise waters. Spacious suites with ocean views range from 750 square feet up to 1600 with room for the whole family. Each suite is decorated in soothing tones and has a double soaker tub, rainfall shower, a laydown chaise lounge on the patio and breathtaking ocean views. The well run Kid’s Club is situated on the far end of the resort so adults can enjoy the tranquil setting.

Over at the beach are premium views of the cerulean sea and world-class sun bathing. No need to rush in the morning to find a spot; there are plenty of lounge chairs. They even have flotation beds if you want to relax on the water. Outdoor activities include kayaking, paddle boarding, yoga (sunrise and sunset), snorkeling, windsurfing, sailing, tennis, and guided hikes through the rainforest. Inside is a library, movies and state-of-the-art gym.

The world-renowned Cara Organic Beauty Spa pampers with hot stone massages, facials, deep tissue massages, Reiki, reflexology, and much more. Their ultimate philosophy and focus is health, well-being, and “feeling fantastic,” which they accomplish ten fold. They also offer manicure and pedicure services to help you feel refreshed for the evening ahead.

You feel welcomed, safe, and at home in the resort. The staff sets the bar high when it comes to customer service and retention and their hard work pays off. Many of the guests return to Carlisle Bay so often they are dubbed “regulars.” When asked what brings them back year after year they emphatically reply, THE STAFF. Not only does the staff cater to your every need, but the little details like the bowl of plumeria petals placed outside your suite to wash the sand off your feet and how they know every guests name are details not to be overlooked.

The cuisine is beyond delicious. With four distinct and unique restaurants, there is something to suit everyone’s palette. The restaurants also draw guests from neighboring resorts because of their stellar reputations. They focus on fresh, local produce and ingredients to provide maximum flavor. There are casual bistros and fine dining options, something for everyone. The concierge knows the local favorites and can arrange transportation if you want to dine outside of the resort.

There are also many activities off the resort. Zip lining through the jungle, hiking up Mount Obama, visiting the many beaches, shopping in the markets or watching a game of cricket, Antigua’s major sport. Another popular excursion is sailing. Antigua hosts two reputable sailing competitions, where hundreds of yachts from around the world compete for top honors. Maybe you might run into one of Antigua’s famous residents, like Oprah, Giorgio Armani, Eric Clapton, or Richard Branson!

Four days is NOT enough time to truly revel in the island’s warmth and hospitality. I look forward to returning to Antigua and establishing myself among the regulars. Hey, I have 361 more beaches to explore!

Plan your honeymoon at Carlisle Bay Resort.

A beautiful couple takes a boat ride in Antigua.


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