15 January 2005
Sustainable Solutions - Caribbean
Blue Mango resort in Tobago is the most perfect example of a fabulously guilt
free, indulgent holiday in the Caribbean, a destination where it is hard to find
an eco-sensitive, locally owned and stylish hotel. A beautiful lodge with rainforest
on one side and the tropical Caribbean Sea on the other, it has a selection of
timber-built cottages. Be prepared for the roar of the sea at night.
British Airways High Life magazine
Hotel guides often aspire to objectivity by employing a rating system for
amenities and strict price guidelines. Personal recommendations, however,
are often stimulated by peripheral subjective factors: that perfect meal under
a full moon, that hole-in-one on the golf course,that exhilarating night spent
watching turtles on the beach.
For our cover story this month (page 56) High Life's deputy editor, Paul
Clements, gathered dozens of personal hotel nominations from some of our
most worldly-wise contributors. He then whittled them down, excluding major
hotel chains and city centre hotels, to 52 favourites - one for each weekend
of the year.
The ones we present are those individual jewels, off the beaten track, with a
worth a visit. If the view from the terrace amounts to a modern wonder of the world, no matter if there's just one breezy communal shower block. And if the splendour of the en suite marble bathroom means you never leave your room so be it.
Inevitably, we have omitted hotels deserving mention. So do nominate your own favourite hideaway. And we may return to the subject later in the year.
Somewhere for the weekend
Looking for a special place to unwind? High Life presents 52 hideaways to get away from it all.
BEST FOR...SUNNY SECLUSION
Blue Mango Cottages Castara Tobago
Comfortable rather than luxurious, the gloriously eclectic, individually named cottages set in the rainforest around the beach at Castara Bay offer seclusion, charm and views with a capital V. Sweet Point perched overlooking the vast sweep of sea has soft sea breezes and pastel mosquito nets. Cliff Hanger offers total privacy with waves washing right below the balcony. The natives are friendly; Porridge, the fisherman, took us boating, walking, caught us a lobster - then cooked it in a bucket on our kitchen stove.
21 July 2001
Checking in: The Blue Mango Hotel, Tobago
Setting the scene: Wooden cabins sprouting Caribbean at the opposite end of the island to the big tourist hotels.
First impressions: So relaxed the rustic rooms might fall into the sea and nobody would notice. Exotic animals mingle with the guests.
Why it’s special: Lush rainforest, sandy beaches, rich snorkelling, friendly people and all just an eight-hour flight away. pools in the rainforest.
Hitting the sack: Basic- wooden beds with rubber foam mattresses. But after walking rainforest trails, fishing and swimming all day, you can drift off to sleep with the sounds of waves just below your room. Air-conditioning courtesy of the sea.
Sampling the fare: Food at the hotel is passable and reasonably priced. Try asking the local fishermen to catch and cook some lobster. Plenty more cafes in the village - all basic and cheap. Self-catering is an excellent option with so much local produce.
Added attractions: Abundant wildlife as well as waterfalls and bathing pools in the rainforest.
Star Quality: Rowan Atkinson. Celestial stars mirrored by a host of fire flies.
Sex appeal: Plenty - after all there is no television.
What I think: A place to relax and let the wildlife come to you without paying the exorbitant prices of some of the ecoadventure hotels. Not for those in need of pampering - no hot water let alone room service.
The Sunday Times
31 December 2000
TOBAGO ON THE CHEAP
The Caribbean doesn't have to blow the budget. SUE CLAYTON reveals the laid-back, low cost Tobago.
At Castara is Blue Mango, an idyllic sprawl of wooden cottages onthe seashore, each screened with acacias and vines. It has Swiss Family Robinson-style stairways and verandas, billowing mosquito nets, amiable cats and the sublime cooking of Rebecca, who grows fresh herbs in her garden. This place soothes the soul.