Mail on Sunday - Online
March 26, 2012

Looking for your next great escape?

These nine water-front retreats stretching between the Caribbean islands and California coast guarantee birds-eye views without its guests stepping foot off the ground, at least once they get there.

Rock House Hotel, Jamaica:

Rock House Hotel: Thatched-roof villas perched along the turquoise water of Jamaica's Pristine Cove claims to offer its guests the best sunsets on the island while towering on its most western point

Recognition: The Rock House Hotel has been named the 'Caribbean's Leading Boutique Hotel' for 2011

Recommendations: The hotel is listed in Patricia Schults' book of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die as well as in The 100 Best Resorts in the Caribbean, by Kay Showker

Situated on the cliffs of Pristine Cove in Jamaica, Rock House Hotel has been named the Caribbean's Leading Boutique Hotel' in 2011 with its thatched-roof villas perched along the turquoise water below. Listed in Patricia Schults' book 1,000 Places to See Before You Die as well as in The 100 Best Resorts in the Caribbean, by Kay Showker, Rock House claims the best Jamaican sunsets while towering on the most western point of the island.

Gaia Hotel and Reserve, Costa Rica:

Gaia Hotel and Reserve: Surrounded by 14-acres of Costa Rica's rainforest serving as a refuge for endangered plants and animals, the hotel offers views of the volcanic mountain range and Pacific coastline

Built in the midst of 14-acres of Costa Rica's rainforest while serving as a dual refuge for endangered plants and animals, the Gaia Hotel and Reserve provides guests with coastal access and two separate-level swimming pools, appropriately perched to offer views of the volcanic mountain range and Pacific coastline. Available rooms range from villas, jungle-view studios, and suites.

The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay California:

The Ritz-Carlton: Named one of the 'World's Best Places to Stay' by Conde Nast Traveler, this California hotel towers over the Pacific coast in Half Moon Bay

Atmosphere: Outside of its monstrous views, the resort continuously greets its guests with the smell, taste and feel of the sea along with opportunities for horseback riding, wine tasting and golf. Towering over the edge of California's Pacific coastline, with waves tirelessly crashing below an estate-like hotel with style compared to old Scotland, The Ritz-Carlton is named one of the World's Best Places to Stay according to Conde Nast Traveler. Rooms in this six-story hotel overlook carpets of green featuring horseback riding, wine tasting and golf before abruptly dropping off to the below shoreline.

Jade Mountain, St Lucia:

Stacked above its 600 acre beach front resort, Jade Mountain in St Lucia offers guests sanctuaries' without telephones, radio or television, internet granted at request for a tropical escape in the rainforest while overlooking the water and neighbouring mountains and cliffs. Every fourth wall is absent in the sanctuaries, promising unparalleled views of the Pitons and Caribbean Sea.

Joule, Texas:

Joule: Eight-feet over the edge of this Dallas, Texas hotel's 10th floor, its swimming pool teases its bathers with the feeling of swimming off the edge while contained by glass

Ratings: While mutually hosed in a five-star hotel, the Joule dually promises a relaxing stay in their downtown premises

Jutting eight-feet over the edge of the Joule Hotel's 10th floor, this Dallas hotel's swimming pool provides bathers with an astonishing view from its dangling glass-ended entrapment. Designed to give swimmers the sensation of swimming off the building's edge,' according to the hotel, the hotel mutually strives to offer guests a relaxing stay in the premises of their five-star hotel.

Monterey Plaza, California:

Monterey Plaza: Situated directly on the Monterey Bay, the Monterey Plaza Hotel in California promises the 'gentle sounds of the surf, the fresh scent of sea air and the sight of otters, seals and dolphins at play'

Views: If the hotel's 'ground view' isn't enough of a spectacle, their spa located on their top floor is said to offer an unparallelled view of the coast. Perched directly on top of the Monterey Bay, the Monterey Plaza Hotel in California situates their guest rooms on pillars above the washing shoreline promising the gentle sounds of the surf, the fresh scent of sea air and the sight of otters, seals and dolphins at play. If the many balconies, bedrooms or their coastal kitchen and bar don't show the highest view of the sunset sought after, their rooftop Vista Blue spa is said to give that last bang.

Trapp Family Lodge, Vermont:

Trapp Family Lodge: While spanning across 2,500 acres in Vermont, this cloud-mingling resort is Austrian inspired while run by the famous Trapp family who inspired the Sound of Music creating a homey while luxurious getaway

Situated on 2,500 acres over Vermont's New England village of Stowe, the clouds around the Trapp Family Lodge appear to almost meet in places with the Austrian resort.If its European charm, luxury and birds-eye views aren't spectacular enough, yes this lodge is run by the very same Trapp family who inspired The Sound of Music, and yes, the Ben & Jerry's ice cream factory is about a 20 minute drive away in neighbouring Waterbury.

La Mariposa Hotel, Costa Rica:

La Mariposa Hotel: On top of Costa Rica¿s highest point in Manuel Antonio, La Mariposa Hotel offers a 360-degree view of the Pacific Ocean, the sport-fishing town of Quepos, and the Manuel Antonio National Park

Surrounding: For guests willing to escape the confines of the resort for the grounds and water below, garden walkways and trails wind through Costa Rica's natural surroundings. Planted on top of Costa Rica's highest point in Manuel Antonio, La Mariposa Hotel offers a 360-degree view of the Pacific Ocean, the sport-fishing town of Quepos, and the Manuel Antonio National Park. Venturing down from the towering Spanish-Mediterranean hotel of 62 rooms with private balconies or terraces, guests have garden walkways and trails for their leisure which wind through Costa Rica's natural surroundings.

The Caves, Jamaica:

The Caves: Dotted along the limestone cliffs of Jamaica¿s West End, The Caves hails itself as a tropical 10-acre castle buried along the azure seafront and fossil-clad cliffs

Tradition: Being so close to the water, the hotel states a tradition of jumping off one of its many cliffs for an early morning swim. Etched into the limestone cliffs of Jamaica's West End, The Caves hails itself as a tropical 10-acre castle buried along the azure seafront and fossil-clad cliffs. So close to the water, the hotel states that tradition dictates an early morning jump' from the cliffs and frequent floating on water rafts while being rocked by the lullaby of the sea.'

 

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