KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent -- Nature lovers and travelers in search of soft-adventure trappings will delight in the accommodation choices on St. Vincent.

Properties range from charming, five-room guesthouses to cobblestone inns, plantation houses set amid tropical gardens and the deluxe, private Young Island resort.

One property, in particular, is a standout, accessible only via the water with no intrusions of telephones or televisions.

Petit Byahaut, situated on 50 acres on the leeward (Caribbean) side of St. Vincent, is located about an hour up the coast from Kingstown.

Guests are transported from the airport by taxi and then travel by water taxi to the bay next to Byahaut. There they are picked up in a boat by on-site managers Brian and Nicole Durbin and taken to the resort.

The 12-year-old property features five unobtrusive garden "dwellings" that blend into hillside gardens.

The five guest dwellings at Petit Byahaut on St. Vincent are secluded and powered by solar energy. "These are not cottages, cabins, units or sites," said Nicole Durbin. "We think the term 'dwelling' aptly describes the accommodations."

The dwellings are completely secluded, although just a short walk up the hill from the beach and restaurant. Each features a screened-in porch; outdoor, solar-powered showers that use collected rainwater; a large deck with a hammock; and a queen-size bed.

Solar power also provides the electricity used for lighting, refrigeration and water pressure. Eleven reservoirs on the property collect and store rainwater.

Activities mirror the tropical setting. Among them are hiking and birding in the nearby rain forest, kayaking along the coastline and stargazing at night.

The property provides scuba and snorkel gear for self-guided tours, Brian Durbin said.

Petit Byahaut's open-air restaurant, which overlooks the beach and the bay, is overseen by Chuckie the Chef, formerly of the Firefly Villa in Mustique.

"We serve three meals a day, but we will open up any time a boater drops anchor and wants a drink and a meal," Durbin said.

Petit Byahaut -- the name comes from the parish on St. Vincent -- is open from November through August.

Nicole said most of the property's guests are from the U.S., and many are repeaters. The resort pays 10% to travel agents.

Daily rates through May 14 are $140 per person, double, for a minimum three-night stay. Rates include all meals, airport and water-taxi transfers, unlimited water sports and 17% tax and service charges.

Low-season prices, from May 15 through August, are $112 per person, double, for three nights.

A five-night Hang Out package is priced from $1,350 for two in high season to $1,070 in low season.

Hiking and scuba packages also are available. For more information, visit http://outahere.com/petitbyahaut.

To contact reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].

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Another option on St. Vincent

Room key: YOUNG ISLAND
Address:
P.O. Box 211, St. Vincent
Phone: (784) 458-4826
Web:www.youngisland.com
Reservations: Ralph Locke Islands at (800) 223-1108
Location: 200 yards off St. Vincent's southern shore. Resort launch runs every five minutes.
No. of rooms: 30 cottages.
Facilities: Pool, beach, hammocks, dining in the restaurant or in private thatched-roof gazebos.
Rates: From $345 to $560 per room, per night, double, MAP April 1-Aug. 31.
Commission: 10%
Packages: Honeymoon, Sailaway, all meal plans.
Noteworthy: Cottages are large, airy and private. Walls of stone and glass have louvered windows; spacious bathrooms have garden showers, plush towels, top toiletries. Coffeemaker, mini-fridge and glorious views -- no TV, phone or radio.
Not worthy: It's a hike from the lobby and beach to the upper units -- older clients should be warned. Stone steps are slippery in the rain.

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