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Four Seasons Resort

Nevis, West Indies, Caribbean

Bob Kagan, CEO of his own San Francisco-based construction company, Pacific Valley Housing Corporation, chose Four Seasons Resort in Nevis for a late April vacation with his wife, Liz. "We're West Coast people," he said, "but we like coming to the Caribbean and we picked this place because of the hotel's reputation. Although it's easier for us to get to Hawaii, we want the change of culture. We took the trip primarily because of the hotel, not the destination," he added. "The Caribbean doesn't always have good hotels, but Four Seasons does."

Mr. Kagan mentioned that he thought the rooms were "new, big and clean" and that "there are no screw-ups and everything seems to work." Although Bob Kagan found the food on the expensive side, he praised the quality and variety. Other guests who were interviewed agreed with Bob Kagan about the superb service except honeymooners, Rick and Judy Galvin. They did not get an oceanside room as promised until two days after their arrival.

The resort has been open less than three years, but it seems to eclipse the island. It's hard to imagine Nevis without Four Seasons. The sleepy little hamlet, Charlestown, one mile from the resort has a handful of guesthouses and a few stores stocked with things that nobody seems to want to buy. At first it's difficult to understand why the island was chosen as the spot for a hotel that would ultimately win the Caribbean's first and only AAA Five-Diamond Award. But builders and management correctly sensed that the locals were eager to work at a large hotel and could be trained to deliver the services that first-class travelers require. Housekeepers and maintenance people respond to requests immediately. Drivers are always on hand to transport guests around the 350-acre sprawling plantation-like property designed to blend with the environment.

Bob Kagan who planned to scuba dive said, "People who come here need to be prepared to sit and relax because there is not much going on." However, most guests find that there is much to do at the resort–golf, tennis, horseback riding, croquet, working out at the fitness center and water sports, including snorkeling, windsurfing and water-skiing.

Dan Poppers, a Californian who travels the world to play golf, found the course designed by Robert Trent Jones to be unlike any other in the Caribbean. He said it is "challenging, creative and the length is more than adequate with many contours and elevations."

Steve Richards, sports director, noted that "the architect's signature 15th hole is particularly novel." Rarely does a golfer have an opportunity to play a golf hole that is over 600 yards. The 15th hole offers the challenge of mastering all the 663 yards from the back tees.

Four Seasons Resort, P.O. Box 565, Pinney's Beach, Charlestown, Nevis, West Indies, Caribbean. Tel. 869-469-1111, 869-496-1112. Room rates vary according to season. www.fourseasons.com/nevis/index.html

Fall 1994