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In honor of Atlantis, Paradise Island Bahamas joining Marriott’s Autograph Collection, we’ve rounded up a few of our other favorite Marriott hotels in the Caribbean. TPG Contributor Lane Nieset highlights eight hot spots to escape the cold this winter and snag free stays when using your Marriott Rewards and Ritz-Carlton Rewards.
This beachfront St. Kitts resort, which features West Indian motifs throughout its decor, has something to keep everyone entertained, from a round of golf at the 18-hole championship course set on-site along the black-sand shore or a day whiled away at the full-service Emerald Mist Spa. In addition to the resort’s 391 rooms and suites, you’ll find one- and two-bedroom villas in one of the garden houses. This Marriott Category 6 property requires 30,000 Marriott Rewards points or $135 per night.
San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino. With gorgeous shores, light breezes and no need for a passport, Puerto Rico is an increasingly popular destination for weekend jaunts to the Caribbean. Set on swanky Condado Beach in the lively capital of San Juan, this 525-room, AAA four-diamond hotel provides an ideal Puerto Rican seaside retreat, with plenty of space to spread out on the soft, adjacent sand. If the pool’s more your thing, wander between a chaise, the whirlpool and the waterslide, and once the sun goes down, head indoors to try your luck at the on-site Stellaris Casino. Newly updated guest rooms feature Mariott’s signature “Revive” bedding and balconies that offer great views of the city, pool and the Caribbean itself. This Marriott Category 8 hotel requires 40,000 points or $189 per night.
The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas. We don’t know what we love more at this 30-acre resort in the U.S. Virgin Islands—the infinity pool on St. Thomas’ Great Bay Beach, or the pool’s view of the sea and nearby isles. This 180-room hotel also has four spots to dine oceanside, a spa with a seaside gazebo for treatments on the sand, and its own catamaran, dubbed Lady Lynsey, where guests can set out for dinner sails, snorkeling or even private treasure hunts. This Ritz-Carlton Tier 4 hotel property requires 60,000 Ritz-Carlton Rewards points or $400 per night.
Curaçao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino. The decor throughout this 247-room resort in Curaçao’s Piscadera Bay features the island’s colorful Dutch influences, with enough pastel shades to fill a crayon box. Take in the island scenery from the beach or outdoor pool, where you can swim up to the Seabreeze bar and restaurant, or snag a stool at the Boardroom Beach Bar in a tiki hut that looks out over the sea. For those interested in heading out and diving or snorkeling over the nearby reefs, you’ll find a five-star PADI dive center set right on the beach. This Marriott Category 7 property requires 35,000 points or $259 per night.
Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino. Offering prime territory on Aruba’s Palm Beach, this resort attracts a loyal following who keep it 90% occupied, year-round—but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t inquire about occasional award space. Located just a few miles away from the wide shore and restaurants along the also-popular Eagle Beach, the Aruba Marriott Resort offers dedicated pools for both kids and adults. The H2 Oasis adults-only pool is exclusively available to guests ages 18 and over who stay in the 49-room Tradewinds, a hotel-within-a-hotel concept set on the top floors of the resort; additional Tradewinds perks are access to a club lounge and a private beach, as well as guest rooms with panoramic ocean views. This Marriott Category 9 hotel requires 45,000 points or $249 per night.
The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman. Set on 144 acres’ worth of Grand Cayman, running from the Caribbean to the North Sound, this luxury resort has the best of both worlds—a beautiful setting on Seven Mile Beach and an array of modern amenities. Thanks to “aqua butlers,” you don’t need to lift a finger while lounging in your private beach cabana, which is stocked with snacks, a DVD player and an iPod dock. If you want to explore the water, book a snorkeling cruise, go on a sunset kayak safari, or take a sailing lesson. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, make your way to Blue, the on-site seafood restaurant from award-winning New York chef and TV personality Eric Ripert. This Tier 5 Ritz-Carlton resort requires 70,000 points or $400 per night.
Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa. It’s easy to forget that an exotic island escape could be as close as our own backyard, like this 151-room boutique Renaissance property on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. While a far cry from an eco-lodge, the Renaissance St. Croix still embraces the beauty of its natural surroundings with studio suites featuring views of the ocean or nearby rainforest. The resort offers standard amenities like a pool, fitness center and spa, but the real draw here is what’s off-shore; go diving at one of the top spots in the USVI—the Davis Bay Wall right off of the hotel’s beach—or head out on a snorkeling trip along the barrier reef of nearby Buck Island. You could also opt to simply kick back in your room and enjoy the scenery from your screened-in porch, in true island style. This Marriott Category 6 resort requires 30,000 points or $287 per night.
Frenchman’s Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a bad view at this USVI resort, which is perched on a seaside promontory in St. Thomas. Rooms in the central Frenchman’s Reef section offer views of the island, harbor and surrounding sea—which makes for a killer shot of the sunset—while the beachfront and garden-view villas at Morning Star are set right on the beach. The real show-stealer, though, is the seemingly endless view of the island from the infinity pool and its swim-up bar. Aside from toasting your wise decision to stay at this tropical haven, there are plenty of activities to pursue, from sailing and kayaking to hitting the sauna and the LAZULE Sea Spa boutique. This Marriott Category 8 hotel requires 40,000 points or $469 per night.
What are some of your favorite places to stay in the Caribbean? Do you have any winter travel plans to visit these spots?