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Jumby Bay ResortWhat Happens in Jumby Bay, Stays in Jumby Bay
Paul McCartney, Jim Carrey, and Mariah Carey have all vacationed here – but you’d never know it. That’s because what happens at Jumby Bay, stays at Jumby Bay. This Antiguan resort is sleek and luxurious, yes, but it’s also famously discreet and private. And that’s the big draw for celebs and also for families who are looking for their slice of quiet island paradise. Even better? Jumby Bay just went through its sleekest renovation yet. Plus, the private island is home to a unique eco-system, making it a nature lover’s paradise.
Not Your Typical All-Inclusive
Forget what you’ve heard about all-inclusive resorts. This is a Rosewood resort, where all-inclusive is done right. No wallets, no bracelets, no limbo lines. Expect an all-day line-up of children’s activities that doesn’t include Elmo or his furry friends.
Jetting to paradise has never been more convenient. Continental, American, and Delta all fly direct to Antigua. Although the lines at Antiguan customs are unhurried and longer than Disney, a Jumby Bay host will meet you on the other side to ensure smooth sailing for the rest of your trip – and an ice-cold towel and rum punch upon checking in to the resort.
Even the Cribs Get Turn-Down Service
The resort’s newest accommodations are among the best in the Caribbean. Never has a face-lift added better value. Two years and $28 million later, the elegant decor still captures the island’s colonial history. The bathroom alone is a highlight for the littlest guests and their parents. After all, bath-time is always better when you get to soak with duckie in an outdoor tub under a star-lit sky.
The Rosewood Estate Suite is ideal for families traveling with an entourage. This one-bedroom suite boasts a private courtyard with a kitchenette, and the option to adjoin more oceanfront rooms, if you roll like the Jolie-Pitts. The true signs of indulgence, however, are the outdoor terraces and plunge pools that come with most renovated suites. Not only do they peer out over the calm Caribbean waters, but parents can take a dip in the pool while the children nap inside.
An Island Safari at Your Doorstep
The daily routine never gets old at Jumby Bay. The beaches alone are loaded with surprises. Early risers are rewarded with close encounters of the starfish kind at Jumby Beach – the gentle waves bring in hundreds of these sea creatures. At midday, park yourself at Pasture Bay Beach, the most stunning and secluded beach on the island. The palm trees are low-hanging and therefore the perfect height for pint-size climbers. It’s here that you’ll feel truly stranded with your family, until room service pulls up with tablecloth service and champagne on ice for your picnic lunch.
The property boasts two pools: a lap pool for your Phelps-in-training and the oceanfront infinity pool, which is the resort’s showstopper. Here, you’ll spend lazy afternoons recharging while the little ones play at the resort’s open-air kids’ club. Rosebud Kids does an excellent job of granting Jumby Bay’s youngest guests access to the island’s tiniest residents, from turtles to lizards. Bindi Irwin would feel right at home.
From June through November, the entire family can witness the nesting of endangered Hawksbill Turtles on Pasture Bay Beach. And this year, the resort added Camp Jumby, where your child can try everything from cooking to mural painting .
Seafood This Fresh Never Gets Old
Although frequent Jumby Bay guest Robin Leach brought his champagne wishes and caviar dreams with him, he must have exchanged those for rum punch and lobster before he left. The Mediterranean-inspired cuisine at the resort appeals to most palates, so the little ones will have plenty to eat. Dine on expertly grilled local catch at the seaside Verandah. For more formal dining, head to the Estate House, a former colonial plantation house on the island’s west end. Because the island has charming hidden spots, don’t miss the opportunity to dine privately in a location of your choice, where the only people in sight will be your waiter and sommelier. Make sure you stay through Sunday night for the island’s main dining event, the White Night Beach Party. Dress your family in their cutest white attire for the famous seafood beach barbecue under the stars.
Pamper the Parents
A game of croquet on the lawn near the Estate House is a great way to pass the time while the children are off sailboarding. The Caribbean’s favorite bartender at the Estate Bar will make you a mean Pimm’s while you play. Or, opt for a Jumby on the Rocks, the hot stone massage at the resort’s Sense Spa.
An island experience this appealing makes leaving difficult. But if you must, an adult casino night on the mainland might help break up a longer stay. Here you can sample local English Harbour Rum or some Wadadli beer. Antigua itself is worth exploring for its rugged beauty. The hotel can arrange for a canopy tour in the rainforest, an eco-kayaking adventure through mangroves, or a Land Rover adventure through quaint Antiguan villages.
Cap off your last afternoon in sweet paradise on Jumby Beach’s powdery stretch of sand. Shovels, buckets, and cocktails are an impressive balancing act, but make some room for your camera before the sun bids its final adieu. What happens here may stays here, but you’ll want to bring back some proof of this secret island getaway.