Luxury Caribbean Getaways - Surfsong in the British Virgin Islands
Words by Juliet Austin
Mark and Cate Stephenson chanced upon paradise like all great Caribbean settlers from years of old… by boat. Originally from Canada, the couple navigated the warm waters of the Caribbean under sail for four years before being drawn on the tide to the sailing fantasyland of the British Virgin Islands. Striking gold in Well Bay, a sheltered cove nestled into the south coast of Beef Island, they set their final anchor, establishing Surfsong Villas – an intimate, signature boutique resort offering the ultimate Caribbean escape and the best in barefoot luxury.
Cocooned by nature, the enclave of villas radiates tranquillity and solitude, allowing its special ‘surfsong’ to soothe and rejuvenate the lost soul, with its boho-chic style and low-key earthy vibe. Here, life is as much about taking in the breathtaking coastal beauty – the uneven shorelines, dramatic granite boulders and balmy subtropical foliage – as it is stargazing, beachcombing, tinkering in tide pools or playing ‘fetch’ with Healey, the couple’s trusty ‘coconut retreiver’.
Seeking to create an oasis with all the privacy of home, yet the convenience and concierge services of a resort, guests are invited to ‘redefine time’– to live on a whim and a prayer with candlelit dinners served by request in the tropical Zen pagoda, shady afternoons spent at the beach lounge or magical evenings kayaking through the mangroves under a sky lit with luminous, shimmering stars.
Accommodations range from charming traditional cottages hidden under shady leaf canopies to the relaxed elegance of the Pool House with its private pool and deck for sun worshippers.
“Our own travels fuel our passion for Surfsong and the unique services we provide,”
Measured and constructed around mature trees and boulders, natural building materials in locally-hewn stone and hardwoods complement interiors with finishes, colours and textures designed to reflect nature.
“We wanted to achieve the look of a resort as an established extension of nature,”
says Cate. Inside, casual yet sumptuous Balinese furnishings combine with seagrass, carved wood, bamboo and teak to exude the classic romantic ambience of the Caribbean. Communal areas like the tropical, tree-shaded courtyard or two-storey Balinese beach pavilion provide ample gathering areas while seaside patios and private decks allow for moments of seclusion and retreat.
It would seem that guests loyal to Surfsong’s unique brand of luxury want to sing to the same tune. In response to demand, Surfsong will soon expand its offerings to include a villa ownership model for those wanting their very own piece of the dream.
“The intimacy of the existing resort will be complemented by the addition of four new villas – two waterfront and two hillside sites – slated to begin construction in the off-season of 2012,”
“Along with those four existing villas, there will be a total of eight separatelyowned villas on the property, making for a very limited ownership group.”
Hoping to attract likeminded owners, the couple have joined forces with world-class architects, Roger Downing & Partner Co. Ltd., to create what they call “invisible architecture,” where landscape and time blend with the surroundings. Designs include ample shaded outdoor living spaces complete with individual splash pools and a natural palette of stonewalls, cedar-shingle roofs, glass and hardwoods.
While prospective villa owners enjoy the signature comfort and calm of the Surfsong experience, every detail of the construction process will be taken care of from furnishing and finishing to the selection of superior quality linens and towels.
“The end result will be a villa that embodies their personal tastes and design considerations, presented to them in a ‘turn-key package’. All the benefits of villa ownership, without any of the hassles.”
To find out more about Surfsong visit their website at www.surfsong.net or call (284) 495-1864.
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