If you follow on Instagram, then you know that I just got back from the loveliest weekend away! I was at the Malliouhana (the Auberge Resort in Anguilla). It was my first media trip in a very long time and wow, it was incredible.
Anguilla is the most northern island in the Leeward Island chain of the British West Indies. I have compiled more detailed notes about getting there (and COVID related notes) at the bottom of this post but it is a short trip away from St. Maarten, Nevis and St. Barth’s. The Malliouhana is a luxury oceanfront resort right with the amenities of a resort, but a boutique feel. There are 63 beautiful rooms (we stayed in room 4 which is one of their Ocean View rooms… you can see a tour of it in the reel I posted to Instagram), with luxurious touches: spacious bathrooms and patio, a giant soaking tub, and breathtaking views of the water!
The property boasts three restaurants, two beaches (one is a private cove, the other has a restaurant with full service), two tiered infinity pools (plus, very importantly, spacious cabanas and day beds for lounging), a full service spa, and fun little touches like hidden TVs in the mirror of your room. The spa is incredible: I splurged on massages for my friend and I to thank her for coming (and helping me capture content), and we both agreed that the ginger and arnica treatment was one of the best massages either of us had ever had.
4 Nights at the Malliouhana Auberge
The reason for the trip was to cover the property’s brand new “Flavors of Malliouhana” culinary experience. This was the kickoff and is something that the Malliouhana will be doing on an ongoing basis: a series of residencies and collaborations with world-renowned chefs to celebrate the island’s rich gastronomic heritage. The Auberge invited a group of influencers, editors, and journalists down to experience the inaugural weekend!
The first chef of the series is Chef JJ Johnson. JJ is based in New York (you may know his restaurant, Field Trip – I’m planning to go next time I am in New York) and is known for the way that he infuses traditional Caribbean cooking elements into all he does. JJ will be doing a month-long culinary residency at Malliouhana (it started March 11th!) showcasing his signature cooking style and combining culturally relevant and locally sourced ingredients with a more global point of view
Over the course of the weekend we attended three different events. On the first night, JJ hosted a bonfire party down on the private beach (Turtle Bay), complete with rum punch and a ceviche making demonstration. On the second night, we had a giant dinner down at Leon’s. And on the third day, there was a Southern Soulful brunch at Celeste. Each event was more delicious than the last. My personal favorite was JJ’s Johnny Cakes with Smoked Trout dip… a family recipe.
The property has 3 amazing restaurants!
We had brunch every single day at Celeste and it was really, really good. I highly recommend the smashed avocado. We also had dinner one night. I like that they offer a mix of Caribbean-inspired classics (like Conch Curry and Red Snapper with a Tamarind glaze) alongside traditional American cuisine.
This was once the famous sunset bar, long known as Anguilla’s best spot to watch the sunset. And it still is, I loved sitting up there reading, mango daiquiri in hand (it also offered the perfect shady area to hide out when I’d been feeling like the sun was too much!) I like that Bar Soleil had so much yummy healthy food: the spinach salad, the poke bowl, the many different ceviches. It felt good to be able to eat clean(er) lighter bites during the day before indulging at dinner.
Leon’s is a laid-back restaurant right on the beach serving up classic Caribbean fare with beach games and picnic tables. Think Johnny Cake burgers prepared on a jerk grill, specialty rum punches, homemade ice cream, “rum”-sicles and more.. YUM!
It is fully worth it once you are there, but getting there is a bit of a hike. If you are in New York, you are in luck: there are plenty of direct flights into St. Maarten. I flew through Atlanta. Once you get to St. Maarten, it’s a short (about 25 minute) ferry ride over to the island to Blowing Point and then about 10-15 minutes in the taxi. You will need to complete the immigration process twice; once in St. Maarten and then again in Anguilla. The trip took me about 14 hours on each side when you factor in airport wait times, immigration, security, transfers, etc.
You need to fill out COVID forms for admittance into both St. Maarten and Anguilla. You do not need a COVID test to enter St. Maarten (where you fly into) but you do need it to get into Anguilla. So this is confusing; the airline will tell you that you’re fine, but you really do need one or you won’t be accepted into Anguilla.
Also! When you arrive in Anguilla, straight off of the ferry, everyone must take an additional COVID rapid test. You’ll get results in around 4 hours but until you get your results, you have to quarantine to wherever you are staying. (If you’re staying at a resort, your quarantine is to just the resort, not your room!).
A giant thank you to Auberge for hosting me for the weekend and covering my travel expenses.