|Golden Rock Inn Hotel, Gingerland Hills, Nevis|
Discover the authentic Caribbean when you visit Nevis and embrace this welcoming, slow travel destination. Make Golden Rock Inn your base, a bohemian boutique hotel arranged around a restored sugar mill. It is built of volcanic stone and has red windows which cuts a striking sight against the verdant jungle landscape and flowering trees. The rest of the accommodation is made up of colourful West Indian cottages. With just 11 rooms it is an intimate retreat, a bolthole for those who want to get away from it all. Welcome to the Garden of Eden in the Gingerland Hills. A place where time stands still. Welcome to Golden Rock Inn.
Visit Golden Rock Inn for a taste of the authentic Caribbean. This hidden gem is concealed within 40 acres of tropical jungle gardens offering privacy for guests. It is a place to get away from everyday life and seek solace in the surrounding nature.
This is an enchanting place, where birds eat out of your hand, lizards scuttle at your feet and the staff are warm and friendly. This is your home from home -with a little bit of laid-back luxury. Monkeys play in the trees above your head, and you can smell the lush scent of frangipani and banana blossom in the air. Set on a sugar plantation, the original refinery tower, entangled with vines is now a magical honeymoon suite. Alternatively, one can stay in one of the charming cottages that are partly concealed by the verdant green wild gardens for the ultimate privacy.
What’s the Vibe…
An authentic inn 11-room hideaway is off the beaten track and a place where guests come to escape from reality and connect with nature. This is the epitome of laid-back luxury. Golden Rock is set in the verdant jungle landscape of the Gingerland Hills and combines authentic Nevisian hospitality combined with experiences such as fine dining, art and wellness.There’s a welcoming bar at the inn and a snug to relax and a freshwater pool surrounded by jungle canopy. In each of the rooms is a verandah where you can watch the sunset. Art is central to the hotel, which is owned by artists Helen and Brice Marden.
While there is lots of art around the hotel, the proprietors do not showcase their own work, rather they provide a platform for local talent. Slow travellers will love it here, it is a place where you can truly unwind and forget about the outside world.It is a romantic place ideal for honeymooners with fine dining under candlelight and also great for adventurers, with its close proximity to Nevis Peak and families too who will be enchanted by the gardens and things to do. Golden Rock Inn is a place for nature lovers with wild birds from mountain doves, bullfinches and herons as well as lizards, bats and treefrogs not to mention the monkeys.The backstory….
Golden Rock is owned by Helen and Brice Marden, two New York artists who have put their creativity to use on this green jungle canvas. The vibe is laid back luxury and it is a small boutique hotel with only 11 bedrooms. Golden Rock Inn is independent and has been in American ownership since it was built in 1801. The ancestor of the owner turned it into a hotel in the 1950s and it has remained a hidden gem with many repeat customers. You can spend spend time in quiet contemplation amongst nature which is why it is also popular with solo independent travellers. It is a boutique property where the general manager Ivo Richli welcomes you to the property and greets you by name. All the staff become friends during your stay and will even wash your clothes for you. Consider this your home from home. The food is home-cooked with generous portions. Even the wildlife join you for breakfast, particularly the little birds.
|What’s the Location…. The hotel is tucked away in the Gingerland Hills, 1000 ft above sea level. The incredible location high in the hills means that nature envelops you and you can still see the Caribbean sea in the distance. Your transfer time from the airport is just under an hour, and that includes the six minutes boat transfer from St Kitts. You are handed a cool Carib beer or a Ting for the journey on the trip so you can kick back and relax and admire the scenery.|
Embark on a ferry at Reggae, Reggae beach or a speedboat and you are transported over to Oualie Beach. Then take the island’s main road past goats and wild donkeys, until you reach the Gingerland Hills. As you wind up the slope, through 100 acres of wild tropical landscape, you’ll soon enter the enchanting grounds of Golden Rock Inn, where you’ll step into another realm.
As you enter the property, let the sounds of nature engulf you. Playful monkeys gather around your vehicle as you park and the birds sing an incredible sountrack in the late afternoon sun. This enchanting place, is made even more magical after the first rains with the smell of petrichor. Nature captivates you and forces you to focus on wellness and be mindful and you are awed by the power of the natural soundtrack. It is a peaceful resort where you can keep to yourself or you chat to other guests and the friendly local staff. in this wilderness, you can forget time and relax and unwind. There’s no pressure.The Hotel….
You are welcomed to the property with a glass of rum punch and invited to sit by the spring-fed pool. Feel the worries leave your body as you gaze at the tropical scenery and listen to the wildlife. This inn is crafted out of lava rock and has imperial red shutters and used to be a former plantation so still retains the same tower which is now a honeymoon suite.
Walk to your rooms down jungle-lined paths shaded by palms and admire the wild but perfectly manicured gardens. You’ll spot cacti, aloe vera, wonderful flowering plants, banana, mango and fruit trees. This is a gardener’s paradise, great for exploring and were designed by Raymond Jungles from Miami. Guests can book a tour with head gardener Keith who will take you on an hour tour of the property where you can get up close and personal with the healing plants. There’s some aloe for your sunburn and various plants to help with headaches, to use as shampoos and cure a range of ailments.
There are also lots of mangoes that are ripe to eat off the trees and plenty of fragrant flowers to smell. The garden has a range of plants from cacti to cycads, which date back to prehistoric times. A lot of the plants were imported by the Mardens and planted with their own bare hands. Look out for the garden waterfalls and epic views and spots to stop and gain inspiration from the natural world.The pool is surrounded by tropical foilage. The cool trade winds blow as you sunbathe and nature’s soundtrack sends you into blissful relaxation. On a sunny day, the pool is so inviting. There’s a shaded canopy for when it gets too hot, and you want some privacy.
|All day, the chirping of birds provides a soothing backdrop and, as the sun sets, the sounds of nature ramp up. The hum of crickets, calls of the bats and singing tree frogs form a backdrop to lure you to blissful relaxation. This hilltop oasis is shrouded in jungle and its wild gardens frame the misty volcanic landscape. The restaurant is set under a tall terrace for shade and you can gaze out at the view which includes the Atlantic Ocean and views of Antigua and Montserrat.|
|The Rocks Restaurant… The Rocks restaurant provides an al fresco fine dining experience, set upon the terrace with a pavilion, it commands enviable views.|
Breakfasts are legendary with a choice ranging from American waffles, lobster hash, cereals and local fruits.
|Lunchtimes are busy, popular with guests and locals, who come from far and wide just for the lobster sandwich. As you dine, enjoy the stunning views and be charmed as the tame birds swoop down and eat out of your hand.|
Evenings see the terrace illuminated by the flicker of candles and the pale moonlight. Start with a conch chowder followed by the lobster linguine. Alternatively, choose the rack of lamb or the seared tuna. Portions are very generous so if you have room for dessert, then Analise’s famous ginger cake does the trick. It is just as delicious as part of afternoon tea. Because of the quality of the food, the Rocks gets a lot of day visitors, especially on special occasions such as Father’s Day. They do on average sixty covers a day on a weekend.
James Eaton is the head chef and he joined the property after working at the Four Seasons, he has introduced a new menu to the Rocks.
|Cocktails at Golden Rock…|
As Nevis is renowned for rum, try Golden Rock’s house punch or a dark and stormy rum made from some of the finest blends. You can also enjoy a Pina Colada or a freshly made lemonade. Alternatively, the G&T is ideal to enjoy on your balcony at sunset nibbling sweet homemade cookies, also made by Analise.
| The Rooms….This 11-bedroom boutique hotel was built in 1801 as a plantation, so the flagship property is within the former sugar mill which offers sweeping views from its second floor master bedroom. As one of the most unique accommodations in the Caribbean, the Sugar Mill is ideal for families, honeymooners, or travellers seeking privacy with an oversized king bed upstairs with a full bath, and two twin beds with a sitting area, writing desk, and a second bathroom on the first floor. Design accents include bright red shutters that play well with the ancient cut stone walls and its lush patio. This is ideal for families or honeymooners who seek some privacy.There is also a free-standing cottage called Paradise, cut from local volcanic stone and boasts a large terrace shielded by bamboo, avocado trees and gorgeous views towards Windward beach. This free-standing cottage is reminiscent of an historic Caribbean stone house and offers full privacy. Equipped with a king size bed and full bathroom, it is perfect to be enjoyed by a couple.|
Dar is a delightful West Indian cottage with a queen size bed, full bath, and a large screened in back porch that opens to a private garden surrounded by stacked stone walls. Its remote location offers complete privacy making it ideal for a couple or person wanting that little extra privacy. Then there are eight hillside rooms located in four duplex cottages ideal for couples or families and friends travelling together.
|Coconut Walk cottage is one example of these hillside rooms. All of them are surrounded by lush tropical gardens and have their own patio to enjoy the view, repeated and feature either a king, queen, or two twin beds with an ensuite bathroom and walk-in rainfall shower.|
|Colourful duplex cottages are sprinkled across the property within close proximity to the restaurant or pool area, all with magical views of the garden and beyond. All the cottages are typical West Indian style and hillside rooms. They are painted in bright colours and camouflaged. They are spacious and homely, with home-baked biscuits and cookies awaiting.We recommend these rooms for stays of four nights or more. |
With only 11 rooms Golden Rock Inn is the perfect place to host a small group looking for a magical place celebrate a special occasion or simply to come together. From only US$6,000 per night plus tax and service this property can sleep up to 25 persons.
Golden Rock is different in that it doesn’t have direct access to a beach but those who crave to be beside the sea can enjoy views of Antigua and Montserrat from the resort. Also Pinneys Beach is a short drive away and the ideal place to watch the sunset with a cool Carib beer.
All visitors to Nevis must visit Sunshine’s which is a bar and grill on the beach that has had a host of famous visitors from Beyonce to Prince Harry. The vibe here is electric with reggae music and colourful décor. You feel the love here and you can even meet Mr Sunshine himself who invented the whole concept. You must try his ‘killer bee’ cocktail which is a potent concoction of rum, bitters and a secret ingredient that gives it its sting. You’ll feel like ordering another which is fine, but more than two and you’ll be on the floor. The reggae forms a cool soundtrack to unwind as the waves crash over the beach on the Caribbean side of the island, chatting to locals and expats, you really feel like you’re in paradise. Nevisian Heritage…
Even though you are so remote, you are only 20 minutes’ drive from Charlestown, the colourful capital where Alexander Hamilton was born. The Alexander Hamilton Museum is the house where the man who inspired the current West End Musical was born. The Nevis-born American became a military officer, statesman, and founding father who served as the first Secretary of the Treasury from 1789 to 1795 during George Washington’s presidency.