Belle Mont Farm, a groundbreaking resort on Kittitian Hill in St. Kitts, is making a name for itself in the sustainable resort sector—and keeping luxury in mind every step of the way.
Set between Mount Liamuiga and the Caribbean Sea in the West Indies, Belle Mont Farm is naturally blessed with scenic coastline views and 400 acres of fertile farmland. And from its inception, owner Val Kempadoo has been as committed to creating a high-end retreat as he is to preserving its natural assets and building an icon of sustainability in the Caribbean. “We have created a luxury hotel that makes a difference hopefully to our guests, our community and our environment,” says Kempadoo.
While “farm-to-table” has become a phrase de jour, Belle Mont Farm is the real deal. The organic farm is the epicenter, with 84 guesthouses and one four-bedroom farmhouse set right within it (villas are also available). While pampering details one might expect from an exclusive hotel, like rainwater showers and private infinity pools, are in place, what sets Belle Mont apart is its strict adherence to its sustainable mission. Caribbean techniques, materials and workers have built and continue to build the infrastructure, evening entertainment includes Kittitian elders telling folklore and locals share their culinary background through a Saturday fish fry. Guests are given baskets and encouraged to forage for passion fruit and bananas (“Pick Me” signs point out which fruit is ripest), as well as visit with the farmers who are, quite literally, taking the food from the farm to their table.
Golf enthusiasts will be challenged by the new 18-hole course designed by Ian Woosnam, Irie Fields, which is the first course to meet strict requirements for the Golf Environment Organization’s LEGACY Program, making it one of the world’s most eco-friendly courses. The course is a Par 71, and is an “edible” golf course, where you can literally grab one of the 100 varieties of mango growing around the turn and snack on it or any other fruit you see. After hitting the links, those looking for a classic spa experience should book The Mango Walk Spa treatment, a package of indigenous-inspired therapies using essential oils and lemongrass grown on site.
Foods and locavores will feel at home on Kittitian Hill, with ninety-percent of food served coming directly from the farm or local suppliers. The Kitchen restaurant, The Mill bar and the Patio Garden offer al fresco comfort food. Coco House is a more complex dining experience, with 12 seasonal courses served, weather permitting, under the stars. The Pool Grille has a popular ceviche bar. A seafood restaurant, Arthur’s, is located on a black sand beach for an authentic atmosphere with a menu based around the catch of the day. And in lieu of room service there’s Rolling Mango, a food truck. Guests staying at the Farmhouse will have a personal chef who can cook or provide lessons on farm-to-table cooking techniques. With all of these restaurants, the culinary bar at Belle Mont is high, and it’s about to be raised even higher. Dan Barber, the famed chef behind Blue Hill at Stone Barns, is planning to open The Table at the resort sometime in 2017.