Fairmont Royal Pavilion
This Caribbean icon, inspired by nearby plantation houses, reopened on the western shore of Barbados in late 2010 after a two-month renovation that added 24 junior suites, each with a private terrace, Caribbean views, and butler service. All 72 rooms, a mere eight miles from Bridgetown, the island’s capital, fuse colonial style with Caribbean cool, with cream-colored walls, rich walnut-wood furnishings, and original commissioned artwork. There are plenty of creature comforts too, including flat-screen TVs, Wi-Fi, and plush, pillow-topped beds. For half the year the resort is adults and teens only; couples unwind at the spa, dine on fresh-caught seafood at two top-notch restaurants (the blackened seared red snapper with cucumber lemon aioli is a must-try), and snorkel, windsurf, and kayak without the squeals of little ones. From the middle of March through October, however, the Royal Pavilion welcomes families, offering complimentary kid-friendly daily activities such as storytelling and arts and crafts.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.