There are so many resorts clamoring for the travelers’ attention in the Caribbean that it’s easy to overlook smaller but more budget-friendly hotels where it’s still possible to book a room for under $100 a night.
The tradeoff for paying top dollar may be fewer amenities (although even most small hotels in the Caribbean have at least a swimming pool) or an off-the-beach location, but you’re also more likely to stay in a property that’s locally owned and more integrated into the community. (And some of our picks are actually set right on the beach).
If you’re mode of travel is less about being pampered and more about experiencing a destination without breaking the bank, consider staying at one of these affordable Caribbean hotels, each of which has off-season room rates starting at less than $100 per night .
Dover Beach Hotel, Barbados Not only is this pocketbook-friendly 59-room hotel located on lovely Dover Beach, it’s just steps away from all of the dining and nightlife of St. Lawrence Gap. Six room categories offer a variety of stay options, and the hotel has a pool, spa, restaurant and bar in addition to direct access to one of the top beaches on Barbados.
Mary’s Boon Beach Resort, St Maarten St. Maarten’s Little Secret’ has studios and suites on the beach on St. Maarten’s Simpson’s Bay and features an on-site spa, pool, restaurant and bar. It’s a legendary place to stay in St Maarten, with the hotel having called Simpson Bay home for half a century. (It’s also the site of the ultra-popular beach bar The Boon).
Villa Eshta, San Juan Both dorms and private rooms at this Egyptian-themed hotel have spare but comfortable furnishings, but the real star here is the Calle Loiza location, in the heart of the lively Santurce dining and nightlife district of San Juan. The villa’s courtyard bar offers rum drinks, and the Ocean Park beach is a quick two-block walk away.
Oualie Beach Resort, Nevis You can nab a low-season room at this Nevis beach hotel just shy of $100 per night; the eco-friendly 32-room hotel has rooms in gingerbread beach cottages, a restaurant serving three meals daily, and lounge chairs shaded by palm trees along a white sand beach.
Residence Village Creole, Martinique The village of Trois Ilets is the hottest resort area in Martinique, full of resorts, restaurants and bars and just a short ferry ride to downtown Fort de France, the island’s capital city. The Residence Village Creole hotel offers brightly appointed rooms in the heart of the action.
Marigot Beach Club and Dive Resort, St. Lucia St. Lucia is famous as a high-end resort destination with many rooms costing thousands of dollars per night to stay, but the modest Marigot Beach Club hotel offers a more affordable alternative to diverse and budget-conscious travelers. Dining options include a pizza parlor and Doolittles restaurant, and there’s a pool and spa services available on-site. The best amenity is Marigot Bay itself, one of the most beautiful places in the Caribbean.
Sugar Apple Inn, Bequia One-bedroom apartments at this small hotel on the island of Bequia can be booked for as little as $80 a night — about what you’d pay for a couple of drinks at some of the ritzy resorts elsewhere in the Grenadines. (Make that $40 a night if you’re booking one of the rooms with two double beds and splitting the cost with a friend). The hillside inn has eight rooms, a pool, and breakfast verandah.
La Sagesse Boutique Hotel, Grenada La Sagesse isn’t on Grenada’s famous Grand Anse Beach, but the hotel has a fine little beach of its own on peaceful La Sagesse Beach, a rustic restaurant and beach bar open to the ocean breezes, and flowering tropical gardens. Rooms occupy a pink manor house and oceanfront building; there’s a private cottage available, too.
Xtabi on the Cliffs, Negril, Jamaica There are actually many small hotels in Negril where you can stay for under $100 per night, but Xtabi is one of the nicer and more complete options. Located on West End Negril’s famous cliffs overlooking the Caribbean Sea, Xtabi has cottage rooms and caves to explore as well as its own restaurant; when you want to sun or swim, Seven Mile Beach is just a five minute drive away.
Hotel Enjoy Las Terranas, Dominican Republic This small hotel has seven bungalows arrayed around a swimming pool near Playa Bonita in the Dominican Republic’s Las Terranas eco-tourism region, which you can explore on scooters offered for rent in the lobby.
Seagate Hotel, Vieques, Puerto Rico Built around the remains of an old Spanish fort on the laid-back Puerto Rican island of Vieques, the Seagate Hotel has basic rooms starting at $85 per night, balconies slung with hammocks, a secluded hot tub for guests, and horseback riding. Beaches and town are both close by.