Timeless elegance, Italian style and that indefatigable colonial, Caribbean charm…
The history of The Inn at English Harbour is a two-part love story and very much reflects that persistent theme of small, privately owned hotels in the Caribbean. It begins with a British pilot who first spotted the pocket of land where the Inn at English Harbour now stands, while flying over it in the 1960s. Struck by its beauty, he vowed to return one day and build a hotel there, which he did. Then, in the 1980s, an Italian family anchored their motor yacht in Freeman’s Bay in front of The Inn. They too were struck by the charm of the place, and decided to buy it. Enzo and Susanna Addari still own and run it to this day having renovated and extended over the years, adding Asian and African influences to its traditional colonial style.
Today, this friendly, low-key hotel has 4 beachside cabanas and 24 junior & deluxe suites spread across 19 acres of manicured tropical gardens, which sweep down to its own arc of white-sand beach. There are two restaurants: the Reef, on the beach, for breakfast, lunch and a renowned Thursday night barbecue, accompanied by a steel band, and the more formal hillside Terrace for dinner under the stars. Both menus are laden with local seafood (lobster, crab, sea bass, swordfish etc) and produce from the hotel’s own organic garden. Facilities include a boutique spa, 2 flood lit tennis courts, complimentary water taxi to Nelson’s dockyard, snorkelling, kayaks and lasers. A tour of the organic garden with chief gardener, Kenti, is a must. In the vicinity there are lots of nice walks and forts to explore.
In the high season (winter months) The Inn is a sanctuary away from the bustling English Harbour with its fleet of multi million dollar yachts. The best kept secret must be the Classic race week in April that takes place the week before Antigua Sailing week, which on the sailing calendar rivals the biggest and best. But the Classic, is all about classic yachts and a refined style of living, civility and everything ‘genteel’. In summer the yachts have all sailed off to Monte Carlo & St Tropez, so English Harbour becomes a sleepy little town, with just a few restaurants and bars, but perfect for people just looking after peace and relaxation.
Ask anyone who has stayed at The Inn and you are sure to get glowing reports about the amazing staff. They really enhance the atmosphere to make it a warm and friendly home away from home. It is a truly peaceful slice of classic Caribbean that would make the ideal hideaway for couples old and young alike.