Jamaica

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Round Hill Hotel and Villas

Address: John Pringle Dr.

Neighborhood:

City: Montego Bay

Phone: 800-972-2159

Website: www.roundhilljamaica.com

Expert Review

This fabled Jamaican jewel - comprised of an 18th century "great house" and 27 posh villas sprinkled over a golden-shored, lushly landscaped peninsula, west of Montego Bay - brings a sublime sense of style to the island's tempting tourist trifecta of sun, surf, and sand, pleasantly devoid of the tacky all-inclusive elements so common to other Caribbean resorts. An understated elegance and sense of timeless glamour permeates the mood here, a fitting reflection of Ralph Lauren's brand identity and his own hand on the place. The iconic American designer - known for selling designs that exude transformation and escape - has owned one of the villas as a vacation home here for over two decades (and bought a second one in 1996), and is only one of many celebrity style icons (Grace Kelly and Jacqueline Kennedy among them) who have used the Round Hill Hotel as their private haven. Opened in the early 1950s as a club of private villas that instantly attracted celebrities and VIPs, the resort continues to draw discerning visitors in search of laidback luxury more than 50 years later, in no small part due to the $6 million redesign of the Pineapple House in 2004, under Lauren's direction. The 36 oceanfront suites are drenched in soothing white, from the walls to stone floors to many of the furnishings (the latter are from Ralph Lauren's Home Collection); the four-poster bamboo beds are draped in white netting and bedding. Splashes of tropical colors accent the crisp palette, as do brass and chrome finishings. Lauren's handiwork can also be observed in the resort's stylish Main Bar.

Tags: luxury | family | expensive | smart splurge

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