VAUXHALL, Barbados — To enjoy the calm surf and sultry sunshine of the west coast of Barbados, you could plunk down more than $1,000 per night for a stay at the famous Sandy Lane Hotel. Or you could ensconce yourself a few yards up the coast at the all-inclusive Club Barbados (pictured below) and spend a fraction of that, while enjoying the same fabulous ocean views. No club beach, but in less time than it takes to suck down a pina colada, you can walk south to the beach at Sandy Lane — or a few steps north to a beach with great snorkeling. All the beaches on Barbados are public, so you can sprawl wherever you like (well, except in one of Sandy Lane’s pink beach chairs. That would be pushing it).
The 160-room Club Barbados is one of only two adults-only all-inclusive resorts on the island. It draws mostly Britons, and scads of honeymooners, who don’t seem to mind that the digs are more casual-comfy than posh. Mature plantings add welcome shade to the pool areas and along the oceanfront, where everyone gathers for meals at the open-air Sunset Restaurant (and for live music after dark). Guest rooms have mahogany furnishings with bright white comforters, filmy curtains, and splashes of batik. The food is good, the bar serves lots of Mount Gay rum and Banks Beer (both local), and there are watersports galore to lure you off the lounge chair, including kayaking, Jet Skiing, snorkeling with sea turtles, and waterskiing, all included in the rate. But maybe the best thing to do is what Bajans call “sea bathing” — just slip into the bathtub-warm ocean and say “ahh.” Rooms from $690, all-inclusive.
CLUB BARBADOS Vauxhall, St. James Parish, Barbados, 866-317-8009, www.theclubbarbados.com