There’s a lot that’s great about Cane Garden Bay in Tortola: a beautiful coastline, lively beach bars, a cool historic distillery, and even a bit of nightlife in a destination — the British Virgin Islands — that’s more known for peace and quiet once the sun settles. Sophisticated, however, is not a word often used to describe this unpretentious beach town on the north shore of the BVI’s largest island.
Quito’s Inn sings quite a different tune. In a town where the norm has been low-slung accommodations with basic amenities, this five-story hotel not only dominates what passes for Cane Garden Bay’s “skyline” but also reigns supreme with its stylish rooms and public spaces.
It’s a bit disorienting to emerge from the elevator and enter the lobby at Quito’s: guests can’t be faulted for thinking they had suddenly been transported to South Beach, or perhaps into the living room of hotel founder Quito Rymer, a reggae singer and composer who may be the most famous man in the BVI. A gleaming grand piano sits waiting for tinkling fingers on one end of the room, an elegant billiards table on the other. In between are plush couches that take full advantage of the unimpeded views of the bay and beach. Just off the lobby are a pool and bar decorated with vibrant artwork by Rymer — who has skills with a paintbrush as well as a guitar — a small spa, and fitness center.
All 21 suites in the hotel are named after Quito’s songs – Love in the Sun, Mix Up World, Reggae Express, and the “beach chic” room decor and amenities far exceed anything else you’ll find in Cane Garden Bay and make a strong run for best accommodations anywhere in Tortola. Even the entry level rooms twin and king rooms, which you can get into for as little as $290 per night in low season, have 400 feet of living space, private balconies with water views, full kitchens, and a bright and cheerful atmosphere with blue-painted tray ceilings, upscaled rattan furniture, spacious baths, and hanging chairs on the balconies.
The larger (935 square feet) Oceanview suites directly face the bay and add seating areas and work desks, and the 1,200-square-foot Cool Water Suites have separate bedrooms and cathedral ceilings; both room classes sleep four (albeit two on pullout couches), making them a good option for families or couples traveling together. At the pinnacle, literally and figuratively, is a 2,160-square-foot penthouse with two bedrooms (one in a loft), 30-foot ceilings, a soaking tub in the bath, and a wraparound balcony well-suited for entertaining, private dinners, or hours spent lounging with a book or working on a tan. It’s a room comparable to the finest private villas you’ll find in the BVI
Built on the base of the hills surrounding Cane Garden Bay, Quito’s Inn isn’t quite on the beach, although the sand — along with the Quito’s Gazebo restaurant — is right across the street.
The Gazebo is one of the hottest spots in Tortola, serving breakfast and lunch and offering daily happy hour drink specials, and entertaining guests with live music several nights a week.
Hotel guests can get beach chairs and umbrellas and settle in right in front of the restaurant or wander down the beach for a self-designed pub crawl or in search of activities like day and evening tours in transparent kayaks, snorkel gear, and other water sports fun.
Quito’s Inn is hard to miss in Cane Garden Bay: the yellow painted and red-roofed building is at the east end of the bay, and if there’s any doubt, just look for the giant “Q” painted on the side. Quito’s isn’t brand new: the hotel actually debuted in summer of 2019, but the hangover from Hurricane Irma and the COVID-19 pandemic conspired to dampen attention to what should rightly be seen as a game-changing hotel in Cane Garden Bay and the BVI. The hotel has weathered these storms in style, however, and with prices frozen at 2020 levels, it’s a great time to discover what’s essentially a brand-new hotel that puts a fresh spin on a Tortola beach getaway without detracting in the least from the unpretentious charm that makes Cane Garden Bay great.
Credit for this article – The Caribbean Journal