Luxury Outlook 2023
An ambitious exploration into high-end residential markets across the globe.
To drop anchor and come ashore on the island of Antigua is to step into a world of infinite sensorial indulgences. The warmth of the sea breeze, the rhythm of the surf, the colors of the lush landscapes, and local villages, illuminated in their intensity by the radiant tropical sun.
Venturing inland, you’ll notice that Antigua is vividly cosmopolitan, and its deepwater harbors welcome the world. Luxury liners and superyachts stop by to sample the splendor, and sailors spread word as they resume their travels. Over time, this has helped the island cultivate a reputation for awe-inspiring nature and culture, where you can live life to the fullest and the finest.
What does this life look and feel like? To answer that question, start the day in this hilltop villa, with its unobstructed western views of the Caribbean Sea.
Kaye McDonald – Antigua & Barbuda Sotheby’s International Realty
As you step out of your bed and walk onto your sprawling terrace, the vista momentarily takes your breath away: to your left, the turquoise waters of Galley Bay; to your right, the forested peninsulas of Deep Bay; and in front of you, swaths of dense, vibrant greenery bathed in the rosy light of the sun rising on the other side of the island. From the infinity pool or the yoga deck, you can continue admiring the scenery as you get warmed up for the day’s activities.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite with your morning stretches or circuits, collect your breakfast from the Hamptons-style main kitchen—or the separate chef’s kitchen, with its walk-in pantry. In Antigua, fresh fruit is always in season. Head through the double doors to the conservatory, and savor your meal in the privacy of your canopied courtyard.
Now that you’re nourished, a morning stroll or snorkel is in order. If you’re just wanting to meander along the shoreline, head down the hill to Galley Bay Beach, known for its soft white sand and five-star spas.
But if you’re looking for a real adventure, it’s a good thing you’re within walking distance of the Five Islands Peninsula and Deep Bay Beach. If you’re going out with your catamaran and scuba gear, dive beneath the crystal-clear waters to visit the famous Andes Shipwreck; or if you’d rather stay on dry land, a series of ascending hikes will lead you through the jungle to Goat Hill, where the 18th century ruins of Fort Barrington offer unparalleled views of Antigua’s west coast and the Atlantic.
You head back to the house for lunch, wandering through your own two-acre paradise of tropical gardens, where tall palms line secluded paths. You can snack in your outdoor gazebo and bar, or get comfortable in your formal al fresco dining area, looking out over Galley Bay. But this is just a brief interlude; it’s May, after all, and the legendary regattas of Antigua Sailing Week are in full swing.
Thankfully, the island is an ideal size—small enough so that nothing is too far away, but large enough for you to enjoy the journey as well as the destination. As you drive to Antigua’s southern tip, you pass through charming towns such as Liberta and Falmouth before arriving at English Harbour. Once a British Royal Navy base, the warships of the past have been replaced with yachts in the present, as a who’s-who of the international sailing scene convenes for one of the world’s most celebrated maritime events.
There’s no shortage of sites to see—as well as upscale restaurants and bars to enjoy—in and around English Harbour, but at some point you might be tempted to wander north to Nelson’s Dockyard. Not only is the 300-year-old marina the world’s oldest Georgian boatyard still in operation, but the heritage architecture and expansive, UNESCO-protected national park offer new thrills every time you go.
By the time you return home, you still have a long, late afternoon ahead of you. If you’re feeling energized from the sporting events earlier in the day, you can play a few sets in your personal bocci or tennis courts. Or perhaps you’re happy just to lie back and lounge before supper.
Tonight, you decide to dine out—and lucky for you, the Five Islands village, where your villa is located, is just outside the capital city and cruise ship ports of St. John’s. As you drive into town, you pass Ballast Bay and Side Hill Bay; then you head through the heart of the city, between Deepwater Harbour’s seafront, lined with multicolored wooden buildings, and the white baroque towers of St. John’s Cathedral looming overhead.
If you continue around The Cove to the north, you can enjoy your evening meal near the historic Fort James, an 18th century barracks whose elevated headland provides a perfect spot to watch the sunset over the Caribbean Sea.
Once you return home, you’re not quite ready for the day to end—so you take your nightcap to the outdoor jacuzzi, and recline in the soothing water while you watch the stars come out over the ocean, and the last flares of the rainbow twilight fade on the horizon.
Where will you explore tomorrow? There are trails to hike, reefs to dive, lakes and lagoons to sail, and villages and towns to visit. That’s why having a private luxury property on the island of Antigua is a nature lover’s—and thrill seeker’s—dream.
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