Travelogues and Articles
St. Kitts & Nevis
Every woman, since she was a little girl, has planned the perfect wedding in her mind. Mine has always included a body of water, preferably an ocean. But when I think about the venue options in my hometown, nothing really excites me. I’ve also envisioned a big wedding with all of my friends and family from over the years. Then I think of my mom insisting she invite her long lost friend from high school or the feeling of obligation to invite my third cousin twice removed. Would you give anything to have a hassle-free wedding in a locale of pure breathtaking beauty? Then look no further than St. Kitts and its sister island, Nevis.
Located in the West Indies, the islands of St. Kitts and Nevis are easily accessible from the United States. American Airlines flies non-stop to St. Kitts from JFK or Miami, US Airways from Charlotte, and Delta from Atlanta. You can connect through San Juan, Antigua, and Sint Maarten. Other options include flying directly into Nevis or taking a 45 minute ferry boat ride from Basseterre, St. Kitts to Charlestown, Nevis.
A backdrop of what seems like paradise can be the scenery for your long awaited fairytale wedding. There are various resorts and plantations, each one more beautiful than the next, all with its own character, to suit your unique wedding style. Some are perfect for smaller weddings, while others can accommodate any number of guests.
Surrounded my luscious greenery, sparkling turquoise waters, botanical gardens, and rain forests, your first and possibly only decision will be where you’d like to get married. If you’ve always envisioned a beach wedding, you could have it at the beautiful St. Kitts Marriot Resort and Royal Beach Casino in Frigate Bay, the all inclusive Royal St. Kitt’s Hotel and Casino, or the Four Seasons Resort Nevis. If you’d like more of a quaint, intimate setting, you’ll love the family owned Ottley’s Plantation Inn and the Rawlins Plantation Inn in St. Kitts or the Montpelier Plantation Inn Nevis. For a historic setting, the Brimstone Hill Fortress offers spectacular ocean and mountain views. This is where the first cannons were mounted in 1690 by the British in an effort to recapture Fort Charles on the coast below from French occupation.
Recently voted one of the top 10 hottest hotels worldwide by MSN Travel U.K, Ottley’s Plantation Inn sits on 35 acres of lawns and gardens in the foothills of Mt. Liamuiga, the grounds of a restored 18th century sugar plantation. The 24 rooms and cottages include plunge pools and jacuzzis and are decorated in British empire mahogany style and casual Caribbean furnishings. The plantation offers panoramic ocean views, a 65-foot spring fed pool, rainforest trails, tennis and croquet courts, and the Mango Orchard Spa. The Royal Palm restaurant serves food that is out of this world and portions that won’t leave anyone hungry. On Sunday they offer a scrumptious brunch which includes your choice of Rum Punch, the island’s signature drink, a mimosa, or fruit punch, a plate of tropical fresh fruit and pastries, and your choice of entrees which include Caribbean style eggs benedict. The spa offers a most peaceful setting amidst the rainforest. The massage table is situated inside an open air cottage with doors that can fold open and and big windows. Do yourself a favor and treat yourself to an aromatherapy massage with Jean. The scents of the essential oils combined with the cool breeze and her skilled massage technique make for an incredibly relaxing experience. If you’re planning a wedding, you will feel every bit confident that the Ottley’s family will take care of all of your arrangements for the marriage license and every detail of your special day. All you have to do is show up with your fiancé and dress.
The Rawlins Plantation Inn and Restaurant is also another option for an intimate wedding. This location is ideal for small weddings, but even if you don’t get married here, you must pay them a visit for their traditional West Indies lunch. Because of their outstanding reputation for the lunch buffet, the entrees remain consistent, so no matter when you go, you’ll be guaranteed a superb meal.
If you choose the beautiful, less populated island of Nevis, the Four Seasons is the perfect spot for a beach wedding. The resort offers everything you would expect from a Four Seasons property with luxurious and private accommodations. Private cabanas are stocked with a couch, flat screen TV, food and drinks, and someone to attend to your every need. For the newlywed couple, there are doors that close for your own privacy right on the beach. There are a few pools on the grounds, some of which are adult-only. They have a 3400 square foot banquet hall which can sit up to 300 guests. There is also a full service spa for all of the primping and pampering needs. The sports pavilion includes a fitness center, and an opportunity to sign up for the golf course which offers gorgeous views of the resort, and 10 tennis courts.
For a plantation and garden setting, the luxurious Montpelier Plantation Inn is an AAA 4 Diamond family owned hotel. During the 18th century, Montpelier was a working sugar plantation and witness to the marriage of Lord Nelson to Fanny Nisbet in 1787. With 17 newly renovated rooms, it’s considered to be one of the finest resorts in the Caribbean. The plantation features a fresh water pool and its own private beach. There is also a spa to help you unwind and get ready for your big day. The restaurant on site features locally grown produce and spices from their garden. When dining, you can choose one of two intimate settings for you and your wedding guests. Enjoy a flavorful cuisine of the freshest seafood, local delicacies and continental cuisine on the terrace amid tropical plants and flowers, overlooking the lights of Charlestown and St. Kitts, or reserve the 18th century sugar mill where no more than 12 people will enjoy a wonderful candlelit dinner. Down the road is the beautiful Botanical Garden of Nevis which also makes for a great wedding setting.
It only takes about 45 minutes to navigate the island of St. Kitts, so for guests who choose not to stay at the wedding locale, there are plenty of other options such as the Frigate Bay Resort, Ocean Terrace Inn, Half Moon Villa, the Timothy Beach Resort, and the Rock Haven Bed and Breakfast.
Many of the hotel and inn owners will offer to take care of all the wedding details, but if you’d prefer, you can hire companies on the island who can organize everything from the cuisine to the decorations. All you have to remember is to bring all of your documentation including passports and birth certificates. You must stay in St. Kitts or Nevis two weekdays prior to the ceremony, and depending on your religious backgrounds, there are a few simple guidelines to follow, which can easily be accessed through the organizer of your wedding.
While you and your guests are on the island, be sure to enjoy a catamaran ride, hike up the dormant volcano, take the scenic St. Kits Scenic Railway, enjoy a drink and listen to reggae music at one of the bars along Frigate Bay Beach, or just sip some rum punch at The Beach House, a peaceful oceanside restaurant in Frigate Bay,
So when you’re looking for that breathtaking, yet intimate location for your most treasured day, think St. Kitts and Nevis for a wedding of a lifetime.