A Feast for the Senses: Four Seasons Nevis West Indies

Resort in dog-friendly Caribbean the right way

By Si Si Penaloza

*NOTE TO READERS – Since this article was published Nevis has imposed a 30 day quarantine for dogs coming into the country, making this destination only advisable as a long term travel option.

The best fly-and-flop destination in the Caribbean is Nevis. Hands down. The jetsetting “let’s spend Christmas in SPF 30” tribe have long been loyal to the Four Seasons outpost in Nevis. With delicious upgrades to Four Seasons Resort Nevis, there has never been a better time to revisit plans to book this pet-friendly get away with your silky best friend.

Of course, for those enviable enough to be spending the holiday season here, the spa’s signature Rum Tonic treatment won the most literal oohs and aahs. Because when a spa fuses classic island ingredients with warm hydrotherapy, sub zero Canadian hearts – more accustomed to being wrapped in Roots than rubbed down with Caribbean sugar – are bound to melt.

My therapist, Nikita, starts with exfoliation, then coats my skin in a glaze of local rum, ginger and honey. As I’m cocooned in this culinary cocktail, she massages my scalp until I’m sure I’m floating. She finishes the treatment with a steamy Vichy shower, and then by hydrating me head to toe with a deep drenching body balm.

Booze may be dubbed liquid courage, but what has it done for you lately (other than make you feel wretched)? This treatment unlocks the good side of liquor. After all, men-in-the-know have been using rum aftershave to condition and seal their complexions for decades. Alcohols in skincare act as emulsifiers, moisturizers and thickening agents.

Photo: Four Seasons Nevis

From the moment Admiral Nelson, Britain’s greatest naval hero, famously fell under the spell of a Nevisian plantation owner’s daughter, the island has endured as a destination of the imagination. And as spas go, the Four Seasons Nevis conjures a similar beguiling mix of romance and history. Treatments are in colonial-style spa cottages, complete with dramatic volcano views. The resort is set on a scenic stretch of Pinney’s Beach, where pelicans feed and green vervet monkeys frolic quietly in the trees.

This unassuming stance drew tennis darling Maria Sharapova to the resort, following the most gruelling press rounds after her rise at Wimbledon. Despite the resort’s tournament-class courts, the ingenue never laced up a shoe and “spent most days in the sun, gazing at the water, and relaxing at the spa,” as she told Travel and Leisure magazine.

Photo: Four Seasons Nevis

The tennis facilities at Four Seasons Resort Nevis include ten courts and ample services and amenities, including night play and professional instruction. Managed by world-renowned Peter Burwash International, the site comprises four red clay courts (two lit for night play) and six hard courts (three lit for night play). Equipment, apparel and accessories are available from the pro shop, located in the Resort’s Sports Pavilion. Four Seasons Resort Nevis has recently been named the #1 tennis resort in the Caribbean and the #3 tennis resort in the world by Tennis Resorts Online.

While many guests come specifically for tennis or prime golf fairways and jaw-dropping diving, just as many hurry here to do absolutely nothing. The most popular new amenity? Four new 200-square-foot cabana-style beach houses perfect for snoozing, sunbathing and imbibing – an ideal chaser to a Rum Tonic treatment at the spa.

Photo: Four Seasons Nevis

Dressing for dinner has special meaning at Four Seasons Resort Nevis. Slip into a wetsuit and join a Four Seasons Chef and a Nevisian dive master for a two-tank dive like you’ve never experienced before. In an offering called Dive and Dine, a diving chef will scuba with certified guests to pluck spiny lobsters from the sea – then trade his wetsuit for chef’s whites to grill up the spoils!

Beneath the serene surface of the Caribbean Sea, you’ll catch the elusive spiny lobster the way the locals do – using a handmade lasso. The only program of its kind, Dive and Dine doesn’t end under water. This exclusive Four Seasons experience culminates back on shore, where you’ll sip cocktails on the beach while the chef prepares your lobster feast.

Photo: Four Seasons Nevis

The Chef will also share the recipe for a special Caribbean-style sofrito marinade, made with fresh and organic ingredients from the Resort’s herb garden, used to bring out the natural sweetness of the lobsters. Savor the rest of the afternoon in one of the four Beach Houses on the sand and reflect on this grand Caribbean adventure.

Photo: Four Seasons Nevis

Four Seasons Resort Nevis is located on the western coast of the Caribbean island of Nevis, sister island to St. Kitts, and the birthplace of US Founding Father Alexander Hamilton.