An island match made in Caribbean heaven, “Feel The Warmth in St. Kitts & Nevis” is an added-value bonanza offering major bang for the wedding buck. For travel through March 30, sun-soaked packages include seven nights for the price of six or five when four are confirmed and discounts galore at shops, restaurants and attractions. Available for booking until March 24 via American Airlines AA Vacations, Delta Vacations and US Airways Vacations, couples can feel the warmth as the winter winds continue to blow at home.
Marrying at the Marriott
The largest property on the island is also the leader in weddings and honeymoons. Seaside on a sprawling beach, 573-room St. Kitts Marriott is also the only American resort in St. Kitts and a green tee away from the Royal St. Kitts Golf Club. With eight restaurants, nine bars including one for cigar and rum aficionados, three pools, Emerald Mist Spa and Royal Beach Casino, the resort is tops with brides and grooms who are looking for a Caribbean location that is easy to get to and easy to navigate. Blooming with a bouquet of wedding packages, it’s the creative extras that go a long way from keepsake bathrobes and catamaran cruises to a Night on the Town in a limo with a bottle of bubbly.
From soup to nuts, the resort pays fine attention to reception menus aimed at pleasing even the pickiest eaters in the crowd. Fresh from the kitchen at the Regal Airport Hotel in Hong Kong, Chef William Stringfellow brings a wealth of expertise to his new post with more than two decades of experience in Thailand, Japan, Europe and Canada. “The great thing about my profession is that one never stops learning, seeing, tasting or trying new products,” noted Chef Stringfellow, “I am looking forward to discovering all the beauty and flavors the island of St. Kitts has to offer.”
Ooh-la-la at Ottley’s
Originally a 17th century sugar plantation, Ottley’s Plantation Inn is majestic at the foot Mt. Liamuiga. A romantic trip down memory lane, the Inn is on the secluded north side of the island with glorious vistas of the Atlantic Ocean. A short hop from the airport, the Inn is just fifteen minutes from downtown Basseterre yet a world away from the hustle and bustle.
Made for weddings with a spacious lawn dotted with feather palms, historic sugar mill and the mountains within reach, couples can pick and choose a venue that is right for their special day. Rubdowns in the Mango Orchard Spa are awesome as the vervet monkeys play in the trees just outside the windows. Romance packages include a traditional British breakfast on the terrace, leisurely strolls through the rainforest, treats in the spa and a gourmet dinner made exceptional with an extensive wine list.
Liming with the Locals
Known as the “Sugar Train”, St. Kitts Scenic Railway uses the same tracks that were built in 1912 to carry sugar cane from the plantations to the Sugar Factory in Basseterre. Today, the train takes passengers on a scenic tour that passes iconic sites like Brimstone Hill and along the slopes of Mt. Liamuiga. A choir serenades passengers with folkloric tunes and sugar cakes and beverages are served on board. “My personal favorite part of the tour is when the schoolchildren get so excited to see the passing train that they wave at the passengers,” said Senator Ricky Skerritt, minister tourism, “this is the most authentic example of genuine Kittitian hospitality you can get.”
Popular with couples who like to get groovy, Monkey Bar is the quintessential beachfront bar for a cold Carib beer or a potent rum cocktail shaken with locally-made Brimley’s rum (coconut is a favorite). More island chillin’at the Reggae Beach Bar where revelers not only enjoy a fabulous barbecued lobster but can also sign up for a fishing trip, ocean kayaking tour or play a game of beach volleyball. For a real slice of local life, Spratnet in Old Road Town is flip-flop friendly on Friday nights when the picnic tables are crowded and the old-timers are delighted to entertain travelers with island lore.
Nuts and Bolts
Easy as pie to make it legal, there is no residency requirement and a bare minimum of paperwork. The marriage license fee is US $75.00 and required documents include a passport and birth certificate as well as divorce decrees, if either of the newlyweds were once married. Couples can easily organize their own wedding although most of the resorts and hotels will gladly assist.
A Window Seat
American Airlines flies non-stop daily from Miami with twice daily service on Fridays and Sundays as well as flights from JFK twice weekly. Other non-stop flights include Delta from Atlanta and US Airways from Charlotte. For couples who enjoy island hopping, there are easy connections from other islands including LIAT from Antigua and Winair from St. Maarten.