For a Romantic Retreat
With year-round sunshine, spellbinding scenery and some of the friendliest people around, Antigua is a wonderful winter holiday choice. And since it first opened back in 1960, Blue Waters Resort & Spa (on the island's north coast) has been a favourite for romance-seekers. Choose the exquisite 5 bedroom Rock Cottage for the ultimate escape, promising exclusivity and luxury with its private pool set on its own headland and surrounded by ocean views. There's also plenty to do for two in and around the resort - whether strolling through the tropical gardens, sailing across secluded Soldier's Bay, or enjoying a couple's massage in the elegant spa. Don't miss a private dinner at the clifftop gazebo - where you can toast to the two of you over a glass (or two) of Champagne.
For Beach Lovers
Fairmont Royal Pavilion is something of a legend when it comes to luxury hotels in Barbados. It combines a sophisticated design and simply first-class service with delectable dining and a whole load of adventure - not to mention one of the best beaches on the island. We're talking half a mile of postcard-perfect white sand lapped by waters of bright turquoise. Head for a swim (the calm, shallow waters make it great for families), explore the coast by stand-up paddleboard, or see what awaits under the surface with top-of-the-range snorkelling equipment. And as evening falls, this beautiful beach makes the perfect backdrop to sundowner cocktails and romantic, torch-lit dinners.
For Family Adventures
Rosewood refinement meets untamed beauty at Rosewood Little Dix Bay - set overlooking a half-mile beach and colourful barrier reef on the enchanting island of Virgin Gorda. While offering something for just about every traveller - from a cliffside spa to a range of great restaurants - this recently revitalised resort is simply superb for families. Charming cottages, sumptuous suites and elegant villas promise plenty of space for the entire brood, while local storytelling, landscape painting and shell hunting are all on the menu at the Rosewood's Explorers club - a wonderland for little imaginations! And to make your stay with little ones effortless, the resort provides everything from cots and pushchairs to bottle warmers and baby bathtubs.
For Short-Haul Sunshine
Winter sun doesn't always mean taking a flight halfway around the world. Known for its year-round mild climate and enjoying over 300 days of sunshine per year, Gran Canaria is the perfect choice from some short-haul rays this time of year - reachable in just over four hours from London. When it comes to finding somewhere to stay, we feature a duo of luxury hotels on the island. The first, Seaside Grand Hotel Residencia, is an intimate, boutique-style retreat - offering access to a Blue Flag beach, spa facilities and a signature restaurant by Michelin-starred chef, Wolfgang Grobauer. Just a short stroll away, sister hotel Seaside Grand Hotel Palm Beach is fabulous for families with a kids' pool, children's club and loads of enriching activities for little ones.
For a Sustainable Stay
Looking for a dose of Caribbean sunshine but want to escape the crowds? Head to Dominica, nicknamed the 'nature island' and known for its endless eco-adventures - from volcano hikes to scuba diving with the resident sperm whales. Tucked away in the coastal rainforest, the award-winning Secret Bay is amongst the leading green hotels in the Caribbean, putting sustainability at the forefront of its vision while still offering an elevated level of luxury. Its ten freestanding villas (each with private plunge pools), treetop spa and sea-view restaurant were all responsibly designed for minimum impact on the precious environment. The resort also has a zero-waste policy, an onsite farm and garden, and it prioritises employing people from neighbouring communities and supporting local artisans.
For Copious Culinary Choices
With pleasant temperatures and glorious sunny days, our winter is the best time to visit the bright lights, beautiful beaches and adventure-filled deserts of Dubai. Overlooking the Arabian Gulf, The Ritz-Carlton Dubai is the perfect luxury base - particularly if good food is an important part of your holiday. Journey through global flavours and culinary traditions at the ten dining venues here. Splendido celebrates the best of Italian cuisine, Amaseena combines traditional Arabian fare with shisha and belly dancing, and Blue Jade has been named Best Southeast Asian Restaurant by TimeOut Dubai. For flavoursome South American bites, live DJ sets and sublime beach vibes from lunch until late, don't miss a trip to Tamoka.
For Escaping the Everyday
Want to get away from it all and escape to a remote Caribbean island? We don't blame you. While measuring just five square miles, tiny Canouan packs quite the punch with its warm welcome, spellbinding seascapes, and serious sense of seclusion. Right at its heart, Mandarin Oriental, Canouan has fast become one of the most exclusive destinations in the Caribbean, home to a range of elegant accommodation, a world-class spa and excellent dining options. Active travellers are more than catered for too - whether snorkelling directly over the pristine house reef, exploring further afield on island-hopping adventures, or taking to the only championship 18-hole golf course in the Grenadines.
For Timeless Caribbean Charm
Starting life as a pineapple plantation, Round Hill Hotel and Villas first opened in 1953 - and has been one of Jamaica's most iconic luxury hotels ever since. Enjoying chic Ralph Lauren-designed interiors and sea views, this resort uniquely combines understated luxury and impeccable service with a warm Jamaican heart. Join the head gardener for a stroll through 100 acres of tropical greenery, explore the estate's working farm and historical buildings, indulge in a massage at the spa (set in a converted plantation house), or head to the beach for fun and relaxation in equal measure. You're also perfectly placed for exploring the vibrant island of Jamaica - whether ziplining through the rainforest, tasting local rum, or sailing on a sunset cruise.
For Marine Exploration
Seeking a sun-drenched winter escape in barefoot luxury? Look no further than Vakkaru Maldives. From six restaurants and an organic farm to a children's club and spa, this tropical retreat offers something for everyone. And as it's set within the crystal-clear waters of a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, you can expect utterly mesmerising marine adventures too. Explore the pristine house reef on a snorkelling tour, join a marine biologist to help restore the coral, or head further afield in search of sea turtles, manta rays and whale sharks. Vakkaru also has a PADI-certified dive centre, where you can learn to dive, rent equipment or head out to some of the world's best dive sites. If you'd rather stay dry, glass-bottom boat trips still showcase the incredible marine life.
For Restoration and Relaxation
Set within 2,500 hectares of protected nature reserve that is a treasure trove of preserved natural, historical and cultural riches, Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Wellness Resort is a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World that promises plenty of peace and quiet, while still offering all the facilities you could dream of. Surrounded by tropical gardens and designed in an authentic Mauritian style, the 2,500 sqm wellness pavilion known as the Seven Colours Spa celebrates the island's multi-culturalism. Choose from a carefully curated menu of Mauritian massages, coconut milk bath scrubs and detoxifying facials, along with a range of mind-body connection experiences - including chakra balancing, reiki healing, forest bathing and hatha yoga. Stay active with hikes along scenic nature trails, before refuelling with locally sourced cuisine, created by chefs and nutrition experts.
For An Array of Adventures
The award-winning Andaz Mayakoba Resort Riviera Maya is set within the exclusive gated community of Mayakoba on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Surrounded by verdant vegetation, crystal-clear lagoons and an exceptional beach, this resort is all about embracing the great outdoors. Meander through mangroves and spot local wildlife on an eco-cruise, sail by luxury yacht to the world's second largest barrier reef, or head underwater with expert equipment and instruction from the Mayakoba Dive Centre. There's plenty to enjoy on land too - whether beachfront yoga, golf on the Greg Norman-designed championship course, learning to cook authentic Mexican cuisine, or heading out to see the ancient Mayan sites of Tulum and Chichen Itza.
For Sophisticated Seclusion
With its luxe yachting harbour, flawless beaches and high-end restaurants, tiny St Barths has long been a favourite destination for the world's most discerning travellers. And perfectly complementing the island's vibe, Hôtel Le Toiny exudes quiet sophistication at every turn. Ideal if you want to get away from it all on your winter escape, this stylish bolthole comprises just 22 ultra-luxe standalone suites, each one offering a private pool and views over the simply stunning Toiny Bay. Spend sun-kissed days embracing the wonderful white sands, learning to surf from the new Surf Shack, feasting on fresh seafood at the upscale Beach Club, or seeking some shade (and serious serenity) at the beachfront spa.