This storied resort sits on a gorgeous landscaped seaside bluff and boasts a wide range of dining options, a large pool complex and a beautiful pink sand beach.
The Grande dame of Barbados hotels since 1887, the resort’s reputation was already so distinguished in the early twentieth century, that even the Barbados Light Railway Company Limited had to extend its line directly here.
A village unto itself, the 40 acre resort on the southeastern part of island, recently partnered with Hilton Grand Vacations and new towers are being built which will greatly multiply its current 252 rooms.
Turreted multi-storey edifices each centre on a courtyard with a central fountain (from which green herons like to drink). Pathways lead to various enclaves — a plaza with restaurants, reception, shopping, the 1.5 acre pool area, or to the precipice of the coral limestone bluff on which the resorts sits.
Steps or an elevator take guests down to the beach. When I visit, the current is strong and waves pound the shore, but the setting sun accentuates the pastel pink sand, and local fishermen appear as silent silhouettes.
Rooms take their cue from simple colonial style with four-poster beds, jalousie windows, slip covered sofas and mahogany furniture. My two bedroom suite with pool offers modern efficiencies including a full washer and dryer, jacuzzi and kitchen.
THE STAFF & GUESTS
With its timeshare component and the recent association with the Hilton brand, the resort attracts families, groups and couples mainly from America, Canada and Britain.
Once an important commercial port, the beach and hotel take their name from the cranes that would load sugar and rum onto boats setting sail for England. History is ever present with steps to the horse (the 18th century word for a ladies’ bathing pool) still intact, the old stables and original guest rooms.
Zen’s floor to ceiling windows perched above the beach, where I dine one evening make for an inspiring setting. So too the screened private banquettes. A manager’s reception, held weekly, is a lively gathering although nothing compares to Bar 1887’s energy on Friday and Saturday nights when mixologists like Vivian keep locals and visitors entertained and welcomed.
MAKE IT EVEN BETTER
Sightseeing is a taxi ride away whether to Bridgetown, the south or the Platinum coast.
There is so much choice no matter your interests.
The Crane Resort
Number of Rooms: 252
Number of Restaurants/ Dining: 7
St. Philip, Barbados; +1 246-423-6220;
This original hotel article first appeared in the Winter 2019/2020 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.
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