Review: Carlisle Bay & the Blue Spa, Antigua
Sitting on the southern shores of Antigua overlooking crystal clear waters, with a verdant rainforest backdrop Carlisle Bay is a petit piece of paradise…
Perfectly situated for complete privacy the resort has one of the few private beaches on the island. An air of tranquility and horizontal luxury hits you as soon as you enter the airy vaulted reception pavilion. All-suite accommodation fringes calm palm-strewn beach and open-air bars and a beachside restaurant create a vibrant hub.
The resort was seen as a game-changer when it opened and is renowned as one of the most luxurious retreats in the Caribbean. Attracting repeat royals, a-listers and elite vacationers comes as no surprise – the setting, service, accommodation, and facilities are second to none.
Wellness facility highlights include tennis courts, a water sports centre, a yoga pavilion, a gym and the impressive Blue Spa.
The Blue Spa
The Blue Spa nestles in tropical gardens in the centre of the resort. The plantation inspired space is cool and calm with breezy relaxation areas, his and hers dip pools, saunas and five treatment rooms. There’s also a hair and beauty salon to cover beauty essentials – from blow drys and manicures to waxing and threading.
Treatments on offer come from one of my favourite Irish organic brands, VOYA and range from marine facials and seaweed eye treatments to holistic rituals, reiki, reflexology, massages and scrubs. There’s also a Teen Spa menu on offer with a specially selected range of treatments including T Facial, T Manicure and T Massage.
The Rescue Me Ritual is a relaxation journey from head to toe. My intuitive therapist Michelle began with deep inhalation of a blend of uplifting citrus oils, followed by an invigorating foot ritual. My whole body was then gently exfoliated with a dry brush (it might sound harsh but it’s actually an incredibly relaxing sensation) followed by a gentle massage combining seaweed oil and wave-like techniques.
The blissful journey concluded with a pressure point face and scalp massage. My muscles were tension free and I floated off to the relaxation area for a cup of VOYA herbal tea.
Rooms range from Garden Suites to the super-posh Carlisle Suites – all boast views of the sea and hills through floor to ceiling windows. Each has a balcony or covered terrace with double day beds as well as a small dining area. Décor is discreet and understated with crisp clean walls and aqua hues.
All suites have separate sleeping and lounge areas and most can be interconnected for families. Spacious, uncluttered and filled with light, suites feature king-size beds, minibars with complimentary soft drinks and snacks, espresso machines and Green Park by Molton Brown toiletries.
There’s a choice of four restaurants; East is a contemporary eatery in the hub of the resort and serves up an Asian-fusion menu with delights including Lobster amuse-bouche, Beef Satay, spicy curries and Thai noodles.
Indigo on the Beach offers oceanside dining with a menu of fresh fish, seafood and grills.
There’s also Ottimo – a great lunch spot for pizzas, antipasti, crispy salads and gelato.
The Jetty Grill sits in a superb setting, overlooking the Carlisle Bay jetty – the adult-only eatery it serves up grilled meats and fresh seafood.