Like any island, Barbados is best viewed from its crystal-clear waters. The legendary Platinum Coast stretches out luxuriously along the Caribbean Sea, with luxury properties, world-class restaurants and ultra-exclusive villas elegantly sprinkled along the water’s edge, like diamonds in a jeweller’s window.
Last month, I set sail on board Seaduced, Barbados’ premier luxury yacht charter. The promise of finding Sea Turtles, shipwrecks and sun-drenched sightseeing was enough to persuade me to trade my sun lounger for my sea legs, but I was wholly underprepared for the level of luxury Seaduced provides her passengers.
Having already enjoyed twelve glorious days on the island, I thought I’d experienced the Best of Barbados. A romantic torch-lit dinner at Barbados’ crown jewel, The Cliff, Afternoon Tea at the most famous address on the island, Sandy Lane, and swanky villa living on the Royal Westmoreland estate. Surely, I’d had my fill of fancy island living?
During this time, I’d also come to understand the island’s major time difference. Not the four hours behind GMT imposed by longitude and latitude, but on-time and ‘Bajan Time’. In Barbados, most things happen when the locals feel like it, rather than when the clock suggests. The positive of this is that you’re free to spend as long as you want on the beach, enjoying the live entertainment provided at Mullins Beach Bar, or having lingering sundowners in the evening. Barbados isn’t in the business of rushing.
So, it was a pleasant and arresting surprise when the pre-booked transfer arrived at 9.30am on the dot. Not Bajan Time, on time. Here began the first of many examples of Seaduced’s glittering professionalism and meticulous attention to detail.
A short transfer to the port of Bridgetown, a miniature city where grand cruise ships take the place of skyscrapers and grey concrete is replaced with beguiling shades of blue, and Seaduced was waiting to welcome us. She lives up to her name, a glamorous luxury 62ft Catamaran, sleek and sophisticated, with a wealth of space on board, entirely befitting of this ‘hostess with the mostess’. A welcoming, professional crew are all smiles as they greet each passenger, while fresh fruit, pastries and a fully-stocked bar do the rest.
In-keeping with the notion of barefoot luxury, the crew stores everyone’s shoes for safe keeping. We won’t be needing them on board and flippers are provided for snorkelling later in the day. Leaving the port, Seaduced purrs to life, happy to share the spotlight with a backdrop of Barbados’ natural beauty.
Lobster canapes begin to circulate, no one is without a drink and the ambience is one of complete relaxation. For me, the morning sail doubled as research – I felt enormous pride to see so much of Elegant Resorts’ prestigious Barbados portfolio of five-star resorts and villas smiling back at me, but for the other guests, this was simply a stunning day at sea.
Turquoise is my favourite colour. Born in December, it is my birthstone and the colour of two of my favourite brands, Tiffany and Fortnum & Mason. So, imagine my (squealing-toddleresque) delight when the water around Seaduced visibly transformed into this most treasured of hues. After a gloriously peacefully paced sail, we had arrived off the shore of Cobblers Cove in St Peter’s Parish.
Like every good host, Seaduced is equipped with everything her guests need and I was delighted that the snorkel and flipper combination matched my choice of swimwear. In the water, our expert guide easily identified where the Sea Turtles were enjoying a mid-morning brunch. I’d hoped to see one, but had more realistic expectations of seeing a fin or a shell swimming off into the distance. I had been disappointed before on charters past. Instead, the turtles came in abundance to greet us and put on a show. I didn’t realise it was on my travel ‘bucket list’ until the moment it happened, but to be high-fived by a Sea Turtle’s flipper is a memory I’ll always treasure. I felt like the Little Mermaid.
We stayed in the water for a leisurely amount of time, but the excitement of seeing a turtle swim by and interact with a group of overawed adults never lost its charm. A short sail, several canapes and a glass that never threatened to go unfilled later we were back in the water, surrounded by the cast of Finding Dory and swimming over shipwrecks. A magical morning for us, part of the everyday exemplary service of Seaduced.
Lunch was a suitably delicious affair. Freshly prepared by our private on-board chef, meats, seafood, salads, vegetables and perfectly paired wines formed a feast for the senses. The food in Barbados is truly exceptional, from simple, local lunchtime spots to the all-star offerings of Lonestar, Tides and Cin Cin, but the lazy lunch we enjoyed on Seaduced rated as highly as any gourmet meal I’d relished on land.
After lunch, our crew declared “the pool open”, meaning the sparkling sea was ours to enjoy once again. This time, however, we had paddleboards, pool noodles and kayaks to explore with. My complete lack of athletic ability made my attempts at paddleboarding a post-lunch entertainment for fellow passengers but overall, the ambience was one of serene luxury.
Somehow, most of the day had passed, and we set the course to return to port. Dessert was served en-route and the premium spirits kept flowing, the showstopping service showing no signs of slipping, even as the day came to an end. When we arrived at the dock, our shoes were neatly lined up ready for us and the private transfer was waiting, on-time.
Barbados is positively bustling with ‘must-do’ activities, unmissable restaurants and seen-to-be-believed vistas but Seaduced combines them all with style and substance. Organised as a literal, well-oiled ship and packing a major (rum) punch in the elegance stakes, Seaduced should be the top of everyone’s to-do list when in Barbados.
To discuss a private Seaduced charter, or for further information about our luxury resorts in Barbados, please call our expert Travel Consultants on 01244 897 578 or view our full portfolio at elegantresorts.co.uk