Tranquility. Serenity. Ultimate peace and quiet in an environment that is a throwback to another time. If that is what you are looking for in a customized wellness vacation, that is what The Great House Antigua – the final stop on our wellness of Antigua and Barbuda – can offer. Story by Anne Dimon
A former sugar plantation home, the Great House Antigua is located on 26 acres in a region known as Mercers Creek. Dating back to 1616, the private home, turned boutique hotel a few years ago, is a hillside retreat on the northeast side of the Antigua, and way off the beaten path.
It’s just a 40-minute drive from the airport (and, conveniently, they can arrange for airport pick-up) but it truly feels like another world.
The closest beach is about a 20-minute drive away, and shuttles can be arranged, but many guests choose to stay put and enjoy the beautiful on- site swimming pool overlooking the bay.
Four guest rooms decked out in (accommodating a maximum of 9 guests) and allows guests to step back four hundred plus centuries.
All rooms are furnished in period pieces and accoutrements, none of which, I am told, are original but many pieces are 250+ years.
There is WiFi throughout the premises, plus a TV room but no television sets in any of the four guest rooms. (That’s o.k. by me! )
Evenings are quiet but great for catching up on reading, journaling or other relaxing pursuits.
Food is a basic factor of their recent move into the health and wellness space. All ingredients are sources locally, and menus are set with the focus on healthy. One evening we dined on Ginger Rice, Smoked Salmon with Strawberry and Balsamic Vinaigrette and Asparagus Spears.
With advance notice, the chef can accommodate allergies or specials diets.
A la carte activities include yoga, boot camp classes, Pilates and interpretive dance movements. The fitness activities take place on a wooden deck overlook the bay and with the original sugar mill as a backdrop.
There is also a small cabin-like building on site that accommodates massages, plus manicures/pedicures offered by a local therapist, and that can be booked in advance
There are also opportunities to arrange for hikes with a local guide. Basically, each stay is customized according to individual preference.
When we visited there were no other guests. The tranquility – if that is what you are looking for – is all consuming. The Great House Antigua is not for everyone. But if peace and quiet and quality healthy meals in an out-of-the-way, travel-back-into-time setting is what you are looking for, then The Great House might be just perfect for a few couples, a family or small group retreat. You’ll find more info here
You can also read about my visits to and with Wallings Nature Reserve, Colesome Farm to Table Experience, Sugar Ridge, Nicole’s Table Cooking Classes, Triflexcursions, and Barbuda Belle as we make our way around the twin-island country experiencing some of what is offered under the umbrella of Wellness.