Cedar retreat is a retreat in the real sense of the word. Seek sanctuary from the world of traffic, discos, dogs, and roosters. Relax to the sound of birds during the day, tiny tree frogs at night, and the distant sound of the surf below.
The house is set on sloping hillside 200 feet above the ocean with a view of the Grenadine islands of Balliceaux and Mustique.
Cedar Retreat is in the shape of a Geodesic dome and has a central open plan living area.
The unique shape of the building with its web of interconnected beams is just one of the dome’s unusual features. A spiral staircase leads to a mezzanine bedroom suspended from the dome ceiling. Further steps lead up to a viewing tower. Fall asleep while counting stars through the large skylight directly over the queen-sized bed. Another great feature is the acoustics in the living room. The sound of the hidden surround – speaker system is highlighted by the geodesic interior shape of the living room. Bach’s fugue not only sounds terrific but also makes you feel as if you are inside a cathedral.
The most important feature of the dome design is coolness. It is shaded by huge cedar trees, and the sea breeze is funneled up the valley, in through the wide porch doors and out through the open viewing tower, keeping the interior pleasant at all times. The fresh water plunge pool is surrounded by two seating areas where you can always find shade during the day and enjoy a pinacolada and skinny dip at night.
A large fishpond lies between the dome-house and two wooden cottages. The fishpond not only adds to the ambiance with its trickling waterfall and fountain but also functions as an extremely efficient mosquito trap. Millions of tiny guppy and larger koi-fish keep the immediate surroundings free of mosquitoes, and the few that escape are consumed by dragonflies. The cottages are part of the property and the three buildings are rented out as a whole. (If you are only one couple staying in the main building, you will have complete privacy. The nearest villa, the Old Fort Hotel, lies 300 yards away and out of sight). One of the cottages contains a queen size bed, kitchenette and bathroom. The other has a queen size bed and an office with WiFi fast internet. The two cottages are connected by a large veranda.
Peter, a Norwegian retired sailor, adventurer and writer and Britt, globetrotter, artist and a therapist, began work on Cedar Retreat in 2007.
It was shortly after hurricane Ivan laid waste to the island of Grenada that they decided that their new home was to be a geodesic dome house – a structure that can withstand 150 mile an hour winds. However, there has not been a hurricane in the region since Ivan in 2004 – which hit Bequia as “only” a tropical storm.
After 29 years of pining for the fjords and city life, Peter and Britt now spend the summer months in Norway and the UK, while the victims of rainy summers and noisy cities may chill out at their paradise retreat
During your stay, if you wish or feel the need to contact us, we will be available at all times on Skype, email or by phone.
Our efficient maid Glenna and handyman Robin will pay a visit twice a week (or when you request it) to clean up, service the pool, remove garbage, and do your laundry. They will put you on the right track on where there is action, where to eat and what else you can do on this lovely island.
Excerpts from the author's book 'The Art of Getting Wrecked'.
Sailing into Port Elizabeth on Bequia 30 years ago, I had a feeling I would be hanging out there for a long, long time.
There was something about the serenity of the place. A sweeping bay with white sandy beaches. The surrounding timbered hillsides scattered with small white houses and radiant scarlet flamboyant trees. There was something so relaxing about the village that it made you either just want to sit down somewhere and feel time pass in a pleasant way or join some friendly locals in one of the many rum shops, listen to the gossip and feel the pulse of the island.
Bequia has a heart of its own. I immediately noticed that things seemed so different from what I was used to. The police didn’t carry guns; there were no locks on people’s houses, no parking meters, no traffic lights. Strangers would stop and talk to you on the street for no other reason than to be friendly.
Where you come from?
How you like Bequia?
What caught my attention most of all, was the laid back, live and let live attitude of the locals.
Villas such as Cedar Retreat are a rare find, blending charm and character with comfort. Relax by the pool and let the stress of modern life melt away. Onshore trade winds blow through the house which remains cool on the hottest of Caribbean days. Wide doors allow the open plan living space to blend with a tropical garden and a breathtaking view of the Grenadine islands to the south-east.
The property is situated in an unpopulated area on Mount Pleasant, elevated on a cliff 200 feet above Mount Pleasant Bay. It’s a short 15 minutes walk to the nearest sandy beach Ravine and about 30 minutes to Hope, an exquisite beach you will most likely have to yourself. Be careful when you swim here, however, as the currents are sometimes strong beyond the breakers. The Sugar Hill Bar and Restaurant with a small mini mart is about a half mile away from Cedar Retreat.
A 15 minute drive will take you into the charming village and harbor of Port Elizabeth and the leeward golden sands of Lower Bay and Princess Margaret beach. A 4x4 Suzuki jeep is included in the rental price.
The tiny island of Bequia (pronounced Beckwee) has a unique, magical charm which is hard to find anywhere else in the Caribbean. With fewer than six thousand inhabitants, it feels like home from the moment you arrive; friendliness is the watchword, and the pace is relaxed and easy-going. Don’t be surprised if you are greeted with a warm hello as you walk along the street – a centuries-old dependence on inter-island shipping and trading has meant that Bequians have been eagerly welcoming visitors to their shores for generations. The island’s enduring seafaring heritage is one of its most striking features. Virtually every Bequia family has some connection to the sea either past or present, and today’s fishermen, sailors, and boat-builders are quietly proud to share their marine traditions with newcomers to the island. Bequia fulfills many dreams of the perfect small Caribbean island- beautiful sandy beaches where more than ten people may constitute a crowd, lush green hillsides, attractive little villages, hardly any traffic, places to get together, and places in which to find that perfect solitude. Choose a holiday of total beach relaxation or exhilarating sailing and diving in some of the most beautiful waters in the world. Get to know the island on foot, or hire a car and discover so much more than just the golden beaches. Take day or overnight trips to neighboring isles or simply fill up another perfect day doing what is increasingly necessary to unwind nothing! A choice of nightlife too awaits you – gourmet international cuisine, or delicious local cooking, elegant cocktails or sun downers in a local bar, a lively jump-up to steel band music or a wonderfully romantic candlelit dinner far away from it all. And then of course there are the warm tropical nights, with an orchestra of singing cicadas and gently murmuring surf, and the brilliance of the star-studded sky which tells you that this is where you have always wanted to be.
Bequia is a small island, measuring 7 square miles (18 km2) with a population of approximately 5,200. The native population is primarily a mixture of people of African, Scottish, Irish, and Carib Indian descent. A substantial number of white Barbadians settled the Mount Pleasant area of Bequia in the 1800s, and their proud descendants live there today. Other highly populated areas include the island capital, Port Elizabeth, which hosts the ferry dock, and Paget Farm, which hosts the airport. The island’s hills are much lower than the peaks of St. Vincent, 10 miles (16 km) to the north, so they do not receive as many rain showers.