Destinations: Islands in the Sun

When you’re looking to disconnect, an island is often your best bet. And while many of these water-enclosed paradises are known for their mesmerizing coastlines and languorous ways of life, others will surprise you with more adventurous pursuits. Here, we’ve rounded up six destinations around the globe that give you a whole new perspective on what a luxury island getaway could be. 

By Chadner Navarro

ARUBA 

This 69-square-mile Caribbean destination just a few miles off the coast of Venezuela is not your run-of-the-mill tropical isle. Here, you can spend your days lounging on the powdery sand with an endless supply of tasty cocktails or embarking on an itinerary jam-packed with activities both on and around the water. Aruba’s motto, “One Happy Island,” is as prevalent as its miraculously bending fofoti trees. 

WHEN TO GO: It’s always summer on Aruba, where the trade winds keep a steady breeze and temperate conditions year-round. 

STAY: At the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino, elevate your experience by checking into the exclusive, adults-only Tradewinds Club. VIP check-in, a dedicated lounge, exclusive food and beverage offerings, reserved beach seating and modern accommodations are just some of the perks.  

PLAY: Colorful cocktails, blackjack at Stellaris Casino and a sunset catamaran sail with De Palm Tours are just some of the resort’s offerings that could pull you away from the peaceful adults-only pool. 

ENRICH: Tour the quiet town of San Nicolas, which is a hotbed for local culture reminiscent of Miami’s Wynwood Art District. In September, the Aruba Art Fair lures international artists from around the world. 

UNWIND: The Marriott’s 6,500-square-foot Balinese-inspired Mandara Spa offers numerous treatment baths, body scrubs and facials. For an active twist on relaxation, opt for a paddleboard yoga session. 

TASTE: The resort has several top-notch dining venues on-site (Atardi for seafood, The Lobby for sushi, for two), but you’ll also want to try Eagle Beach’s Screaming Eagle for French-inspired Caribbean fare and its unique “dinner in bed” atmosphere.

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