Like several other Caribbean islands, Barbados is divided into parishes, each of which has its own special history, attractions and character. One of these is St James which, over the years, has become the island’s most exclusive holiday destination. Located along the magnificent west coast and featuring the most beautiful beaches and views on Barbados, today it is home to the most prestigious resorts, the best restaurants and the most upmarket boutiques. It’s here where the discerning traveller comes to stay and where their every need is expertly catered for. Here are just some of the things that make St James Parish Barbados’ most exclusive destination.
Stunning Beaches and Shoreline
St James has become the exclusive area it is today because of its natural beauty. Here you’ll find exquisite paradise bays, like Paynes Bay and Mullins Beach, with their soft, sandy beaches, calm, transparent seas and shady palms. Surrounding these are lush tropical landscapes and, dotted around the west coast shore, an abundance of stunning coves to explore.
Such beauty also extends below the surface of the water. Folkestone Marine Park, close to the parish’s main settlement, Holetown, is an important marine reserve. Swim beyond the shoreline or take a local snorkelling tour and you’ll discover an underwater conservation area rich in colourful coral reefs and an abundance of fish, anemones, turtles, sea horses and sponges that live there.
St James’ upmarket status has led to some of the world’s most famous brands opening up boutiques in the parish. The ultimate shopping experience comes from a visit to the Limegrove Lifestyle Centre in Holetown where there are over a hundred top brand stores and places to eat. Up for grabs at duty-free prices are designer clothing and footwear, health and beauty products, the latest gadgets and exceptional pieces of jewellery. Some of the brands available include Hugo Boss, Louis Vuitton, Tag Hauer, Ralph Loren, Cartier and Michael Kors.
Enjoying a bit of posh nosh at a top restaurant is something on everyone’s holiday itinerary and St James doesn’t disappoint with the restaurants and dishes on offer. Indeed, the parish is home to some of the island’s most celebrated restaurants. You can take your pick from the highly renowned The Cliff with its fabulous international dishes and stunning views, the gorgeous The Tides and its delicious seafood, or try alfresco, starlit dining, warmed by firepits, at the wonderful Fusion Rooftop in Holetown. If you’re by the beach, also check out Royal Westmoreland Beach Club, its award-winning chefs serve up delicious menus on the waterfront terrace.
Holidays are a great time to indulge in a spot of pampering and St James has top-class spas aplenty. For blissful treatments in sumptuous settings, try the Indulgence Spa, at Mullins Beach, an Elemis specialist that provides personalised experiences in state-of-the-art salons. Also at Mullins beach is the heavenly Singita Wellness Centre. Here, clients can experience a variety of massage and healing treatments and take part in yoga, Pilates, athletics, body sculpting and ballet barre.
Golfing enthusiasts will just love what’s on offer in St James Parish. Its courses include Sandy Lane, host of the 2006 Golf World Cup, the Apes Hill Golf Club and the truly outstanding Robert Trent Jones Jr. designed course at Royal Westmoreland. The latter features spectacular views of the Caribbean and some exceptional par 3s.
Prestigious Holiday Resorts
The west coast is where the well to do build their private villas. It is also the place to find the island’s most exclusive resorts, the most prestigious of which is Royal Westmoreland. Offering luxury villa, apartment and townhouse accommodation on a 750-acre private, gated resort, it is the epitome of first-class holidaying. Guests have exclusive use of its championship standard golf course, ultramodern gym and fine eateries, including its colonial styled Club House, Beach Club and Rum Shak. There are also tennis courts, a saltwater swimming pool, a concierge, private dining and housekeeping services.
If you are looking for a truly special holiday in Barbados, St James Parish on the west coast is your ideal location. With its backdrop of natural beauty, presidential accommodation, exceptional restaurants, world-class, top-brand shopping and blissful pampering, it has everything you need for a great holiday right on your doorstep. Of course, its central location also makes it ideal for visiting every part of this small but fascinating island.
For more information about Royal Westmoreland, visit its Holidays Page.