ANGUILLA, though decidedly English, is surprisingly cosmopolitan. It’s the closest island to Dutch/French St. Maarten/St. Martin plus Tony French St. Barts isn’t too much further south. The diversity comes together nicely over Anguilla’s 35 square miles, the varying accents and proclivities of visitors from disparate lands enhancing the island’s exotic appeal. The paradisiacal potpourri here is especially evident in the amazing array of available rums. Throughout most of the region, local spirits tend to exert a home field advantage with the biggest multi-national brands like Bacardi and Captain Morgan added to the mix to appeal to visitors. Not so in Anguilla. There’s certainly a great deal of pride over homegrown Pyrat Rum, even despite the fact it hasn’t been made in Anguilla for years. But at the same time, you’ll find some of the finest vintage rums from Barbados, Jamaica, Martinique and Guadeloupe gracing top shelves at Anguilla’s many exclusive resorts. Indeed, it is luxury villas and posh seaside pleasure palaces like Cap Jaluca, CuisinArt and Viceroy Anguilla that have put the island on the map, but there are plenty of fine budget hotel options here as well – Anacaona, Paradise Cove, and Arawak Beach Inn to name a few. No matter where you stay, you’re bound to enjoy this special island’s warm, friendly people, its incredible beaches and infectious beach bar scene. Dune Preserve, Elvis’, Pumphouse, Johnno’s, Smokey’s – the names are legend among party-loving Caribbean travelers, as is Anguilla itself to those of us in the know…
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