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A Fantasy-Island Hideaway Awaits Couples at Curtain Bluff in Antigua
A romantic sunset cruise on the Sentio will long be remembered

The expansive, palm-lined beaches is an idyllic retreat

Breakfast al fresco on the balcony overlooking the Caribbean
The resort is majestically set on bluffs overlooking the ocean
Dining is elegantly casual at lunch and resort formal at dinner

By Theresa Catena
Photography by Paul Aizaga

An intensely lush, tropical isle in the heart of the Caribbean, Antigua plays British Mum to the fantasy-island hideaway known as Curtain Bluff. Named after the poetic peninsula it resides on, the intimate resort presides over two unspoiled beaches where it’s embraced by a dense forest of rich green vegetation, towering palm trees and bright, sunny flowers in whimsical hues.

Upon arrival, it’s apparent that Curtain Bluff founder, Howard Hulford, held fast to the first, second and third rule of real estate, as the location of his personal paradise couldn’t be more heavenly. Atop the peninsula, blush-colored buildings with airy white terraces overlook the ocean below. A vacant, undisturbed shore line calls out for exploration, while an eternal breeze blows off the sea, through each airy guest room, to the tranquil bay of the neighboring cove.

An even more private haven awaited my honey and me within the walls of our lofty suite where fresh, white walls blended into pink, sandy-colored terracotta floors. Tropical, rattan furniture was off-set by accoutrements in sea-greens and ocean-blues. The colossal-size bathroom offering a bit of a playground with its huge, soaking tub for two, separate shower stall and a generous, daily supply of miniature bottles of rum and often-chilling bucket of ice.

Framed by tall, billowy palm trees, the crown jewel came to us in the form of our second-story balcony. There, we welcomed each glorious morning with breakfast al fresco, as we took in the awe-inspiring beauty of the sparkling turquoise waters that ebbed and flowed just 50 feet from our toes. At night, we reveled at the full moon glistening in the dark and watched the dramatic shadows dance beneath the rustling palms, just before drifting off to the hypnotic swoosh of the tumbling waves.

With such serenity, we quickly forgot about reality and our checkbooks too as this extraordinary, all-inclusive resort forbade tipping, as well as offered unique trappings such as top-shelf cocktails, afternoon tea and evening hors d’oeuvres.

Fun in the sun was served on the other side of the bluff, where an intimate bathing beach nestled in an idyllic cove, was dotted with tikki-roof umbrellas and inviting lounge chairs. There, we splashed-down on plush, white foam rafts, followed by time-outs from the sun where I huddled up in a big, nurturing hammock slung beneath the palm trees. The courteous wait-staff spent their afternoons delivering umbrella-decked frosty drinks to us Caribbean-loving guests.

For those seeking more than an intense tan or a week-long siesta, there were countless, complimentary water sports, from windsurfing and kayaks, to snorkeling and scuba-diving. To appease our own lazy guilt, we took to early morning, all-out tennis competitions on the championship courts.

Our appetite was something we did not forget and back on the beach, we found lunch served seaside daily. At night, the casual, laid-back atmosphere became a formal, date-night-out, as everyone convened for dinner and dancing under the star-filled sky as the local bands played soulful sounds nightly, from jazz to reggae.

Arranged by the accommodating concierge, we departed with one final indulgence where set off on a sunset cruise aboard the Sentio, a 50-foot sailing yacht commandeered by Captain John. A fascinating character, we listened to his intriguing stories about Antigua while imbibing in his grand hospitality. Wine and cheese, champagne and a killer sunset at sea are a lethal combination for romance. Heaven has certainly found its place on this tiny sliver of Caribbean pie.

for more information visit the picturesque Curtain Bluff and Sentio online.

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