Nestled on the tropical beachfront in the historic Holetown area of Barbados, the Coral Reef Club Spa has around 40 treatments, facials and rituals to choose from. BOAT takes a look inside...
Where is it?
Just down the road from Rihanna’s grandiose crash pad and the celebrity magnet of Sandy Lane Hotel sits the low-key yet palatial Coral Reef Club. Comprising 88 rooms, suites and cottages over five hectares of tropical beachfront in the historic Holetown area, it offers an intimate alternative to the headline-grabbing properties nearby. Husband-and-wife team Mark and Marie O’Hara have been steadily expanding the resort since 1995, taking care to maintain its homely vibe without compromising on quality.
What’s the hype?
Nestled in the heart of the property’s lush grounds, Coral Reef Club spa is designed with a palette of coral stone walls and dark chocolate wood. It skilfully blends the exterior and interior spaces, with lush indoor vegetation and tumbling water features connecting the rooms and corridors with the gardens. Each of the four treatment rooms (Lemongrass, Lotus, Ginger and Neem) has a small private garden terrace, so you can sit in meditative bliss accompanied only by the sound of running water, grackle birds and the hotel’s troop of green monkeys.
What to have
There are around 40 treatments, facials, rituals and wraps to choose from, all designed to relax and revive you from top to tail. Go for the Caribbean Ritual, a four-hour indulgence incorporating a Citrus Appeal Facial, Pineapple Créme Brûlée enzyme body exfoliant and an 80-minute Aroma Fusion Massage. After the (thankfully quiet) gong sounds to revive you at the end of your treatment, you can rejoin the world at the Coral Reef Club restaurant, which serves West Indian delicacies in an informal colonial-style setting – think dark wood, whitewashed walls and slowly rotating ceiling fans. When you’ve had your fill, the hotel’s private, powder-white beach is a mere 10 steps away, where you salute the sunset with a Bamboo Punch or two under a palm tree.
Best by boat
Coral Reef Club is a 10-minute RIB ride away from Port St Charles Marina, which accommodates yachts of up to 76 metres.