Sometimes the Island Runaways hunt hard for island bargains, whether it's an inexpensive but excellent apartment in Guadeloupe, off-season, or a great deal on a car rental on St. Maarten. But once in a while we can't resist treating ourselves to a fabulous boutique hotel...which is exactly what happened this last January in Grenada. You see, it was our wedding anniversary and for this particular tropical island getaway we decided to celebrate in style. That meant three blissful nights in a peaceful, Caribbean paradise:
(The view from the pool. Photo by Laura Albritton.)
In our hunt for a pretty, romantic place to stay on Grenada, I came across reviews of Le Phare Blue hotel & marina on Trip Advisor. Somehow the name rang a bell. Then I remembered -- Steve Bennett of highly successful travel blog Uncommon Caribbean had raved about Le Phare. With that in mind, we decided to take the plunge and rent one of the small number of cottages on their quiet Petite Calivigny Bay compound.
(The cottage we rented. Photo by Island Runaways/Z.A.)
We arrived on New Year's Eve and got to attend an utterly fabulous party with amazing music. The next day, however, we woke up to a serene, beautiful garden just steps from Le Phare Bleu's marina and small beach. Inside the cottage was comfortable, island casual furniture, a wonderfully comfortable king bed with high quality sheets, a chic bathroom, a kitchenette, all for us!
(The living room at Le Phare Bleu. Photo by Island Runaways/Z.A.)
We wandered down to the Deck Restaurant & Bar the first morning to eat breakfast. (But you can also get it brought to your room.) The sea breezes and the view put us immediately in a vacation frame of mind. All the stress from the holidays just melted away as we sipped coffee and started to relax.
(The beach area in front of The Deck Restaurant. Photo by Island Runaways/Z.A.)
The staff at Le Phare Bleu, from that first morning and throughout our stay, was lovely. From the waitress, to the ladies who managed reception, to the gardener, everyone greeted us warmly and was always ready to help. And we could see that everyone truly took care of the property. Since it's not a large resort, you felt like you'd come across a little Caribbean secret. Yes, there were sailors and cruisers who arrived by dinghy or had dockage in the marina, but these visitors and fellow guests merely added to the atmosphere. We overheard some fascinating sea stories!
(A view of the marina. Photo by Island Runaways/Z.A.)
The beach here is of volcanic sand, which gives it blackish streaks, but the water was clear, clear, clear. Each day of our stay we took our rental car out to explore the island, but then were always relieved to return to the calm of Le Phare Bleu. Everything, from the delicious pool to the scrumptious meals to the scenery just seemed perfect. There is even a restored "lighboat" in the marina which has a library. You can go aboard and look around. (I'm running out of space for photos, so we'll share those in another post.) Meanwhile, we discovered one of the owners, Dieter, is a talented musician and music teacher. On Friday night we heard just incredible tunes at The Deck, from two talented young women whose singing was just electrifying. The place became packed with people who knew that a Friday night concert at Le Phare Bleu was an event not to be missed.
One of our favorite spots on the entire property? A platform with a hammock that you could swim out to. Isn't this the picture of happiness?
(Ahhh, that hammock. Photo by Island Runaways/Z.A.)
The only problem with Le Phare Bleu? Knowing that eventually, we'd have to leave. If you value tranquil, gorgeous surroundings, good Creole/European dining, and true Caribbean hospitality, I can only say that for a real treat, it would be hard to top Le Phare Bleu. It's really the definition of how a great beach boutique hotel should be run. With so many places to discover in the Caribbean, Le Phare Bleu definitely ranks a place that we want to return to...soon!