Hôtel Le Toiny
Built into a gently sloping hillside, the resort has just 14 one-bedroom and one three-bedroom independent villas, all with wide-open water views, kitchens, and 10-by-20-foot private pools. Ask any of the hotel's pretty young French staff-ers, their hair swept up and pinned into magnificent chignons, which footpath leads down to the sea, and her face will turn from sunshine to rain. It's not that the beach is bad; it's just wild, with no provision made for those who might want to simply watch the sun rise. Decorated in a safe but pleasant idiom, the 14 villas almost have it all—luxuriously bare oak floors, limed tray ceilings, Chippendale-style mirrors, sofas that invite flopping down with a good book, walk-in closets, fax machines, plus—in many rooms—giant wall-mounted plasma television screens. Don't even bother with the in-room kitch, instead head to Toiny's restaurant, Le Gaiac. Le Gaiac is an Event Restaurant, one that does a stunning job with that quintessential Event Dessert, crèpes Suzette prepared tableside. Practically everything else on the fashionable menu seconds St. Bart's love of high-pitched Asian-inflected French food.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.