We all need glamor sometimes – and nowhere in the Caribbean offers more glitz than Eden Rock.
Hotel address: Eden Rock Hotel, Baie de St Jean, St Barthélemy, F97133, French West Indies
Phone number: +590 590 29 79 99
Price from: from around £ 770 per night
Set the scene
Built on a quartzite outcrop in the middle of the beautiful bay of St Jean, the red roofs look like butterflies clustered on a rock. St Barth’s is the party island in the Caribbean, and Eden Rock started it all. Nowadays, he retains a cool sophisticated French older sister. Everyone who visits the island ends up arriving here.
Eden Rock was founded in 1953 by Rémy de Haenen, a thug and smuggler. He was the first person to land a plane on what was then a jagged island. Once he built a guesthouse on the rock he saw while flying, others followed: Greta Garbo, Jack Cousteau and Robert Mitchum among them. In 2017, the hotel was largely destroyed by Hurricane Irma, but the Matthews, who took over in 1995, have rebuilt better.
Most of the suites are named after the Matthews’ children, and one of the most recent – where the famous On the Rocks restaurant once stood – pays homage to his stepdaughter Pippa Middleton. The uneven rock forces the accommodation to be varied, and the decor follows. Some are calm and soft with rattan wallpaper, carefully chosen artwork, and Camus by the bed. Others are glittering mosaic-filled dens, long sofas and deep pools. At the top is the massive 2,200 square foot Columbus Suite with views of the entire bay and one of the most conveniently located offices I have ever seen. But really, why would you work?