Why St. Kitts and Nevis Are Stepping Up Their Luxury Game

Belle Mont Farm will afford views of neighboring islands St. Eustatius, St. Barths and St. Maarten.

Belle Mont Farm will afford views of neighboring islands St. Eustatius, St. Barths and St. Maarten.

Rumors of Aman Resorts’ expansion in Nevis are slowly becoming a reality. Couple that with the recent news that Kittitian Hill, the long-awaited, upscale resort development project in St. Kitts, will officially open in December, and you have a pair of sister islands that are poised to be among the most luxurious in the region.

Hotel Developments

There will be a heavy buzz surrounding St. Kitts this December with the opening of Belle Mont Farm, the first chapter of the much-anticipated Kittitian Hill luxury development. Belle Mont Farm is set on a hillside amid 400 acres of steep contours and flat coastal plain on the north coast between Mount Liamuiga and the Caribbean Sea.

Its 84 Guest Houses and seven four-bedroom Farmhouses will offer views of neighboring islands St. Eustatius, St. Barths and St. Maarten. The December launch will also unveil The Kitchen restaurant, The Mill bar, Irie Fields Golf Course and The Workshop fitness center.

RELATED: Kittitian Hill to Finally Open in December with Opening of Belle Mont Farm

Belle Mont Farm and the wider Kittitian Hill project is the brainchild of Val Kempadoo, a social entrepreneur with Caribbean roots. It is being designed by Bill Bensley, an award-winning architect known for his work with Four Seasons, Oberoi and Leela hotels in Asia. Clients will immerse themselves in local culture and heritage, Kittitian Hill’s organic farming community, distinct farm-to-table culinary experiences, and wellness offerings. Belle Mont Farm will be overseen by General Manager Carlos Salazar.

Kittitian Hill, a $600 million hospitality and real estate destination, is founded on the four cornerstones of sustainability—cultural, economic, social and ecological. Highlights of upcoming 2015 phases of its development include the Mango Walk Spa, a destination spa that will be secluded in a forest of giant mango trees, high on the mountain; and Yaya Groves, a collection of secluded three- and four-bedroom private villas available to rent or purchase. All villa bedrooms will be master suites with ocean views through floor-to-ceiling windows. Villas will offer such amenities as professional kitchens, infinity pools and wrap-around verandas.

The Village will be a central part of the Kittitian Hill experience, where community and culture will thrive. It will be a place where people can gather to relax, eat and drink, catch up on the latest news, or just soak up the atmosphere. Eateries and shops will complement art galleries, artisan workshops, a film school and open-air cinema.

As part of Kittitian Hill’s development, the historic Golden Lemon hotel on the black-sand beach at Dieppe Bay (10 minutes from Belle Mont Farm) will undergo an extensive restoration to bring this iconic property back to life. When complete in 2015, The Golden Lemon will feature accommodations, a bar, restaurant and pool.

Travel Agent was told that the reservations system will go live on September 1. For now, however, agents should reach out to General Manager Carlos Salazar ([email protected], 869-466-1712).

Nevis is also poised to open up a new buzzworthy property of its own. Travel Agent recently sat down with Greg Phillip, CEO of the Nevis Tourism Authority, and got the latest update on a scoop we obtained involving a planned Aman Resorts expansion to the island.

“It’s looking more and more like that is going to happen,” says Phillip, who was in town for the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s annual Caribbean Week celebration in New York City in early June. It was around this time last year that we broke news of Nevis’ intention to add Aman to its already-robust luxury offerings.

Belle Mont Farm will offer Guest House and Farmhouse accommodation options to guests.
Belle Mont Farm will offer Guest House and Farmhouse accommodation options to guests.

The plans call for a roughly 40-room resort to be built on the opposite side of the island of the Four Seasons Nevis, currently the island’s most popular luxury resort. The Aman Resort would be located about 15 miles away and include an array of villas as well as a new golf course.

“It’s looking good at this point,” Phillip told us. “But can I give you a date for when construction will start or when the final product will be finished? No, I don’t have that information at this time.”

In other hotel news, the family-owned Mount Nevis Hotel in Newcastle is undergoing a $60 million expansion project that began with a ground-breaking ceremony back in April. The new construction will more than double the property’s guest capacity, adding 36 new units to the existing 32 rooms.

Meanwhile, back on St. Kitts, the four-star boutique Ocean Terrace Inn on the island’s southern coast, just outside of Basseterre, is scheduled to reopen December 1. It is currently closed for renovations that will include upgrades, redesign and stylistic overhaul of the 65 Terrace Garden, Hillside Ocean View and Luxury Poolside View rooms and Luxury Ocean Terrace Suites, with a selection of contemporary furniture and brighter colors. Public areas are also getting a makeover.

More Summer Flights

For the summer, American Airlines has added Friday flights to complement its regular Wednesday and Saturday non-stop flights to St. Kitts from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). These new flights will operate through September 5. Departing flights leave JFK at 5 p.m. and arrive in St. Kitts by 9:30 p.m., while return flights leave St. Kitts at 10:30 a.m. and arrive back in New York by 2:55 p.m.