The Island of Luxury
Ready for the most relaxing vacation of your life? Hop a flight to Saint Barthélemy (St. Barts, for short), a 9.5-square-mile, French-speaking island in the West Indies. Pampering is serious business here, so high-end dining, gorgeous boutique hotels and celeb spotting on the beach are the only items on your to-do list.
Where to Stay
Your oceanside villa awaits
Hôtel Le Sereno
It’s called “Le Sereno” for a reason--tucked away in a cove between the turquoise ocean and the Morne du Vitet (the highest mountain in St. Barts), this oasis is dedicated to serenity and relaxation. Each of the hotel’s 36 rooms are gorgeous, but we’re partial to the four-bedroom villas with staggeringly beautiful ocean views.
Where to Eat
On the Rocks
Perched above Hotel Eden Rock on St. Jean Beach, legendary chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s fine-dining restaurant is worth the splurge for the view alone. Oh, and then there’s the local fish ceviche with lime, mango and coriander…
Go swimming at picturesque Shell Beach (but bring sandals, they’re not kidding about the shells), then grab a snack at this casual lunch joint with breathtaking ocean views.
What to Do
This week’s goal: Relax
Spot celebs at Saline Beach
Head to one of St. Barts’ most popular beaches, and if you’re lucky, you could see vacationing celebs like Olivia Palermo, Demi Moore and Steve Martin. (And don’t forget to hit up a less traveled spot, too, like Colombier Beach.)
Go exploring in Gustavia
This St. Barts port town is packed with high-end shopping--tiny boutiques dot the side streets, while the main drag is reserved for name brands like Cartier and Hermès.
What to Skip
Don’t do anything dangerous
The runway at St. Jean Beach
St. Barts is home to the shortest runway in the world, and a tourist was recently grazed by a plane as it soared overhead. Swimming or standing directly underneath the planes at St. Jean Beach might make a great photo op, but it’s definitely not worth the risk.
What to Pack
Make a statement on the shores of the French Caribbean in a trendy cutout one-piece.
Breezy maxi dress
You’ll be eating your fair share of fancy meals, so pack a versatile maxi dress you can wear both shopping and to dinner.