From overwater bungalows to cliffside estates, villa accommodations have upped the exclusivity factor on the vacation experience for travelers across all segments – from honeymooners to group getaways to multi-gen families looking for opportunities to reconnect with each other away from the distractions of a more crowded resort type setting.
Beyond intimate, today’s villa vacation puts all the comforts, services and amenities of a resort within reach — from private chef-cooked meals to in-villa fitness classes and even direct ocean access (without having to travel around the world for it).
From the southern shore of Providenciales to the sleepy island of South Andros in the Bahamas to Guatemala’s exotic Lake Atitlan, these resorts are perfecting ’the art of the villa vacation’ — appealing to travelers seeking a remote, intimate escape
Villa ‘Vues’ and Bright Ocean Blues
Wymara Resort & Villas
Turks & Caicos
This Turks & Caicos resort offers guests more than just access to some of the world’s brightest blue waters. Marking the completion of Phase I of a villa expansion project, book one of Wymara Resort’s seven four- and five-bedroom oceanfront villas that overlook the protected waters of Turtle Tail.
Just a short drive from the resort’s main grounds, the swanky villas draw inspiration from the island’s powdery sands, exuding an airy, breezy aesthetic complemented by designer furniture including Tucci umbrellas, Gloster Bay lounge chairs and Design Within Reach Adirondak chairs. The lofty kitchens feature Cuisinart appliances, Wolf cooktops and Sub Zero refrigerators, while the adjacent living room’s high ceilings, plush couches and retractable televisions make it a great space for entertaining and gathering.
The focal point? Private oceanfront infinity pools flanked by an over-the-water swim platform with direct ocean access. Hard to distinguish where the pool stops and the ocean begins, the deck peers out over reef-protected waters.
For added luxury, request a VIP meet & greet upon arrival in a personal SUV, take advantage of the personalized concierge service, or reach out to the attentive on-site villa manager who can arrange everything from snorkeling excursions to a private yacht charter.
Colorful, Cultural Guatemala
Lake Atitlan, Guatemala
Casa Palopó is perched above spectacular Lake Atitlán — famous for its natural beauty, three mesmerizing volcanoes and 12 colorful Mayan villages that dot its shores, each with its own personality. The private home turned boutique hotel offers just 15 uniquely decorated guest rooms, adorned with colorful walls, Latin American artwork and handwoven textiles made in Guatemala — all perfectly complemented by breathtaking views of the lake and the three volcanoes directly across. It is the first and only Relais & Chateaux property in Guatemala, guaranteeing an escape as exclusive as it is unique. If privacy is more your thing, retreat to Villa Palopo, located 150 steps above the main hotel, complete with two helipads, three suites, a full kitchen, and the most incredible infinity pool you’ve ever seen. It’s adjacent to an outdoor fireplace where a glass of wine is best enjoyed with views of the sparkling lights from the indigenous Mayan towns that line the shore of the lake. With villa accommodations also available in the charming and colorful city of Antigua, Casa Palopó is a culture-seeker’s dream.
Elegance on the Cape
Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
Nestled among the coast of Massachusetts, Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club has rightfully earned its spot as one of Cape Cod’s crown jewels. While the property offers two distinct types of accommodations, its private villas within The Villages offer tranquil and secluded home-bases to enjoy a Cape Cod escape.
Twelve two- and three-bedroom villas are available as part of the Endicott and Edinborough collections, which were fully renovated in 2019 and span up to 1,400 sq. ft. in size. These exclusive villas accommodate up to six and eight guests, each offering fully equipped kitchens, dining areas and living rooms. Guests staying here are granted access to the resort’s 700-foot stretch of private beach, as well as premier views of the Troon Privé golf course; the only Nicklaus Design golf course in Brewster. When not lounging within the villa, guests are able to take advantage of the plethora of activities available across the resort’s 429 acres, including five pools, nine tennis courts, oyster bed tours, six restaurants, spa, kayaking, biking, and more.
For extended stays, book the resort’s ‘It’s BNB – Better in Brewster’ package, available exclusively for the Endicott and Edinborough villas. The package includes pre-shopping and stocking of groceries, complimentary bicycle rentals for a half day, as well as complimentary admission to the resort’s weekly oyster bed tours and Cape Cod Museum of Natural History. Opt to elevate the experience with a private beach fire, or feel free to bring the pooch along, as Endicott villas are pet friendly. Revel in all the perks of a private stay with the benefits of a hotel team, including daily housekeeping to take care of making the beds, doing the dishes, and ensuring the experience is smooth sailing from beginning to end. For more information, visit www.oceanedge.com.
Island Vibes and City Life
ACOYA Curaçao Resort, Villas & Spa
For an under-the-radar destination that provides the perfect balance of bustling city-life and laid-back island vibes, look no further than the Dutch Caribbean island of Curaçao. Thanks to its colorful pastel buildings, cobblestone streets and unique architecture, the capital city and UNESCO World Heritage Site of Willemstad feels like a slice of Europe in the Caribbean.
Surrounded by tropical gardens and built around a lake, travelers get both upscale seclusion and the modern city setting with a stay at ACOYA Curaçao Resort, Villas & Spa, centrally located in Willemstad. The beautiful, zen-like resort just 10 minutes from the Queen Emma Bridge and island’s best restaurants is an Insta-friendly paradise reveled for its gorgeous multi-bedroom villas. ACOYA offers one, two and three-bedroom spacious villas with private plunge pools, patios, full kitchens and an option to book an all-inclusive package that comes with three meals a day and snacks throughout. These expansive standalone villas offer unparalleled seclusion that travelers seek, and combine comfort and luxury to create a sense of peace and serenity. For more information, visit www.acoyacuracao.com.
Couples Tower Isle Oasis Spa Villas
Ocho Rios, Jamaica
The all-inclusive oceanfront paradise that is Couples Tower Isle offers access to endless luxury, romance and relaxation. The adults-only resort elevates the wellness experience with the Oasis Spa Villas that feature personal plunge pools, outdoor showers, private sun terraces and unlimited spa treatments. Yes, you read that right: unlimited spa treatments. Facials, massages, scrubs and everything in between can be arranged through your spa concierge who is there to create your relaxed itinerary. Couples will reach a new level of bliss with a treatment in the comfort of their own villa or can take a short stroll to the award-winning zen spa.
When you’re at peak relaxation, set sail with your love to Couples’ private island, savor island flavors at one of six on property restaurants or take on an aquatic adventure on a paddleboard, kayak or jet ski. Everything is included and the options are endless at Couples Tower Isle. For more information https://couples.com/resorts/tower-isle
Villa Living Amid an Eco Paradise
South Andros, Bahamas
Caerula Mar is a brand new boutique luxury resort spread across a gorgeous stretch of powder-white sand without a single footprint. The property’s six private villas are steps from the shoreline, with an airy design accented with white and neutral tones, lofted ceilings, and touches like ocean-facing reading nooks and hanging prints of vintage black and white portraits of island locals. The property’s minimalistic design lets nature be the star of the show, and the best performance happens when the stars come out at night. Aptly nicknamed ‘The Sleeping Giant,’ Andros is The Bahamas’ largest island, but least inhabited, with the world’s third largest barrier reef and greatest number of Blue Hole ocean caves — a true eco paradise for sun-worshippers and nature-lovers. www.caerulamar.com