The continually expanding popularity of Anguilla, especially with the rich and famous, has caught everyone by surprise. After all, at first glance Anguilla looks to be nothing special. It is a long, narrow, flat island, 16 miles long by three miles wide, with constant droughts and a notable absence of the lush rainforests, beautiful mountains, rushing rivers, or deep canyons that normally provide all the activities tourists clamor for.
But Anguilla's trump card is its beaches. Spectacular even in this region, where above-average beaches are the norm, Anguilla's wide swaths of sparkling white sand and bright turquoise waters teeming with tropical fish are indeed something special. It is a point well taken by island planners and developers, who have built luxury resorts on those beaches. Many of those resorts quickly qualified as prime hotels of the world. Properties like Cap Juluca, CuisinArt, and Malliouhana are routinely ranked on the top of the best lists in Caribbean Travel Life, Conde Nast Traveler, and Travel and Leisure.
Besotted visitors have created a market for luxury villa and home sales that have developers madly working to provide choices for them. Covecastles and Altamer were among the first individual-owner villas; their units are sold and are now available for vacation rentals. They have since been joined by other impressive developments, among them the St. Regis Temenos, the Viceroy, and Cerulean, and there are a number of private individual villas dotting the landscape all over the island. These new homes not only add to the available rooms for visitors but also provide a significant boost to the local economy.
This is the best guide to Anguilla, excerpted from our extensive guide to all of the Leeward Islands, complete with details on where to stay, where to eat, nightlife, and all activities.
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