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An extremely popular feature of overwater bungalows is the presence of glass floor panels but, rather surprisingly maybe, not all overwater bungalows have them.
Those that have though allow guests to stare down from the comfort of the sofa or bed at the many comings and goings of the exotic sea life below.
They also presents a singularly nice photo opportunity – your partner swimming through the bright turquoise waters under your ‘house’ captured directly from above.
Here are our choices for, and reviews of, the best luxury overwater bungalows & water villas with glass floors in the Caribbean in 2021!
- Address: Five Islands Village
Antigua and BarbudaFirst opening its doors in May 2019, Royalton Antigua is an all inclusive resort that boasts Antigua’s very first, and still only, overwater bungalows. The resort offers opulence and luxury and has a choice setting on the clear, calm waters of Antigua’s Deep Bay, less than twenty minutes from St. John’s, and a half an hour from V. C. Bird International Airport. THE ACCOMMODATION: The accommodation choices are many, with of course the overwater bungalows taking pride of place. They cover a full 1442 square feet and have king size bedrooms, lounges (with sofa bed), dining areas and gorgeous outdoor terraces overlooking the Caribbean. They are also sleek, sophisticated and luxurious. Expect private infinity plunge pools, jacuzzis, glass floor viewing panels, private butlers and 24 hour room service as well as in-room aromatherapy, satellite TV, top of the range music systems, complimentary IPTV movie selections, twice daily re-stocked minibars and a pillow menu for example. The other accommodation choices are a mixture of suites in different locations around the private beach and all of them share the same sleek interiors and modern luxury features. They can all sleep up to four but are generally smaller than the overwater bungalows which have over 1,100 square feet (106 square meters) of space. Note: Children (under 13) are not allowed to stay in the overwater bungalows, hence we have placed The Royalton in the Adults Only category. In all the other accommodation though children are welcome. PRICES: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos, on their Booking.com page here and on their Expedia.com page here. Note: Like most luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean the overwater bungalows at Royalton Antigua are incredibly sought after – Covid notwithstanding, for the 2021 season you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. FACILITIES & THINGS TO DO: The resort has seven restaurants in total, with complimentary in-room private dinner and drinks service also available. The choice of food is enormous with a mixture of Caribbean, American and European to be enjoyed, both buffet and a la carte. Each eatery has a READ MORE
- Address: Carretera Cancun Tulum, Km 55.3
MexicoThis adults only, all inclusive near Cancun is home to the Palafitos Overwater Bungalows, the very first overwater bungalows in Mexico (there are now still just three – the other two being the very nearby Rosewood Mayakoba & Banyan Tree Mayakoba) and consistently hits world class standards for luxury all inclusive resorts. It has a fabulous location on Maroma Beach, Playa del Carmen – rated one of the world’s best beaches, the gourmet food and drink is of the highest quality, there are numerous activities to enjoy and the resort is intimate, romantic and at the same time fun. THE ACCOMMODATION: As mentioned, the Palafitos overwater bungalows were the very first in Mexico and come with all the features you would expect from such a pioneering resort – glass floor panels, jacuzzis, private infinity pools, outdoor showers and direct access to the crystal clear waters below your feet. There are two basic types; the Palafitos ‘Beachfront Bungalows’ are close the shore while their ‘Superior Bungalows’ are out in the open water and so are more peaceful and give more of a at one with the water feeling. Both are pretty much identical in every other way though and, covering nearly 600 square feet, they are modern internally and suitably luxurious, with extra large, terrifically comfortable double beds, a seating/dining area, sections of glass bottom floor, a jacuzzi, an infinity type plunge pool on the terrace over looking the water plus an outdoor shower. Other facilities include WiFi, cable TV, air con, iPod docks, mini bar, 24 hour room service and a private butler. PRICES: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos – on their Booking.com page here and on their Expedia.com page here. Note: Like most luxury overwater bungalows around the Caribbean the overwater bungalows at Palafitos El Dorado are incredibly sought after – Covid notwithstanding, for the 2021 season you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. FACILITIES & THINGS TO DO: El Dorado Maroma an all inclusive resort with a great emphasis on gourmet food and drink, with much of the ingredients coming fresh from READ MORE
- Eclypse de Mar is an intimate, very much eco-friendly resort, with its own nature reserve, in Bocas del Toro, along Panama’s Caribbean Coast. It has some tastefully designed and decorated, overwater bungalows, just seven in total, which blend nicely with the deep jungle behind. ACCOMMODATION: Their overwater bungalows have two categories – the Standard at 538 square feet/50 square meters and the larger, slightly more plush, Honeymoon Overwater Bungalows at 861 square feet/80 square meters. The latter has one king size bedroom plus lounge while the former, though smaller, has two bedrooms, one double and one twin. All have seating areas inside and outside on the private terrace which offers direct access to the water (which is beautifully calm and clear), and inside they have glass floor panels to allow you to observe the abundant sea life below. They are super comfortable but this being a very much eco-friendly resort you will have to forgo some luxuries – No air-con just ceiling fans for example which, helped by the fresh breezes from the sea, do the job very well though, no TV or in-room fridges either and the WiFi can be quite weak in the overwater bungalows. Beyond the overwaters they have some rooms in the main building which have the same comfortable interiors and cosy, earthy feel. They have balconies equipped with hammocks and what they describe as a ‘sea view’ which in reality though is a view of the back of the overwater bungalows. They may be a little underwhelming but what certainly isn’t is the 3 bedroom, two floor Sea Loft Villa which has great views over both the sea and the surrounding jungle. Their Tree House then is set deeper in the jungle, so no sea views there but it is the most close to nature of all the accommodation choices and you can spot all sorts of wildlife direct from your balcony. PRICES: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos – on their Booking.com page here and on their Expedia.com page here. FACILITIES & THINGS TO DO: Eclypse de Mar Acqua Lodge main attraction is their own, 7 acre, nature reserve READ MORE
- Address: Sandals Cay
JamaicaThe couples-only Sandals Royal Caribbean, near Montego Bay and just minutes from Sangster International Airport, was the very first overwater bungalow resort in Jamaica and indeed the entire Caribbean. The concept was an immediate success and the Sandals company soon followed it with overwater bungalows at Sandals South Coast (also in Jamaica) and in their branch in St. Lucia. Sandals Royal Caribbean though was the ground breaker, or well…water breaker, in this region and its standards have been extremely high from the beginning. It is a high end luxury, all inclusive paradise with a private island (where the overwater bungalows are to be found) top of the range facilities, superb food and drink and consistently excellent service. It also has a tremendous location – getting to most overwater bungalow resorts usually involves a fairly long journey from the nearest airport but here you are, tantalizingly, just minutes (via the resort’s private shuttle) away. THE ACCOMMODATION: They have a great range of accommodation to choose from; hotel rooms, suites and overwater bungalows (referred to as ‘Honeymoon Bungalow, 1 Bedroom, Ocean View (Over-the-Water Priv. Island Bungalow’ on the booking page), offering varying levels of space and luxury to suit most budgets. Their beautifully designed overwater bungalows, attached to a gorgeous little private island, have set the standards high from the very beginning. They have a tangible sense of luxury, are sleek, modern and spacious (just over 1,100 square feet), and come with outdoor terraces, infinity plunge pools, large glass floor panels, romantic spa style bathrooms with bathtubs, a wealth of modern facilities and 24 hour room service with an exclusive in-room dining menu. PRICES: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos, on the resort’s own website (Sandals) here, and on their Expedia.com page here. Note: Like all luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean the overwater bungalows at Sandals Royal Caribbean are incredibly sought after – Covid-19 notwithstanding, for the 2021 season you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. FACILITIES & THINGS TO DO: You have a nice choice of food and drink outlets from casual eateries and READ MORE
- Address: Sandals South Coast
JamaicaOne of only two overwater bungalow resorts in Jamaica (the other being Sandals Royal Caribbean), Sandals South Coast is a 5 star luxury, adults only, all inclusive resort which offers pure Epicurean indulgence in a gloriously isolated beach setting. THE ACCOMMODATION: They have a wide range of luxury accommodation to choose from, between rooms, suites and overwater bungalows, all offering varying levels of space, luxury and privacy. Their 1,100 square feet overwater bungalows (referred to as ‘Honeymoon Room, 1 Bedroom, Ocean View (Over the Water Butler Bungalow)’ on the booking page) are suitably plush and luxurious, and come with outdoor sun decks with soaking tubs and overwater hammocks, internal glass floor panels, particularly nice, spa style bathrooms, personal butler service and an exclusive in-room dining and room service menu. PRICES: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos, on the resort’s own website (Sandals) here, and on their Expedia.com page here. Note: Like all luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean the overwater bungalows at Sandals South Coast are incredibly sought after – Covid-19 notwithstanding, for the 2021 season you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. FACILITIES & THINGS TO DO: Sandals South Coast is very large indeed with different European themed sections, French Village, Italian Village, Dutch Village and Venetian Piazza. There is a lot going on around the resort though the overwater bungalow section is slightly away from it all and so very peaceful. You have nine gourmet restaurants to choose from which serve consistently excellent European, Asian and Caribbean cuisine, as well as eleven different bars with a range of musical, and other, entertainment, and a huge range of premium drinks. You can do some duty-free shopping at the collection of resort boutiques and luxury jewelers, browse art galleries or play sports such as beach volleyball, tennis, billiards, table tennis and shuffle board. There is a state of the art gym and fitness center here, and the tranquil oasis of the Red Lane Spa has, amongst other things, a beauty salon, a yoga-pilates studio, a steam room, plunge pools and several secluded outdoor READ MORE
- Address: Pigeon Island, Gros Islet
Saint LuciaSandals, fresh from their success with overwater bungalows in Jamaica, quickly turned their sights to St Lucia, and here at the all-inclusive, adults only, Sandals Grande St. Lucian resort you can expect the same high levels of luxury, sophistication and service. It is very much an opulent romantic getaway, being adults only and attracting a well heeled clientele, but the atmosphere is friendly, relaxed and rarely stuffy. Their overwater bungalows are a honeymoon favorite and with only nine of them they are generally booked out well in advance. They come with glass floor panels, tranquility soaking tubs, private patios and over-water hammocks amongst other special features. They also have a 24 hour personal butler service and the service throughout the resort is top notch – efficient and professional but also relaxed and personable. THE ACCOMMODATION: They have an enormous range of accommodation at the resort, with the above mentioned overwater bungalows being the most popular. These have a spacious, luxurious feel with hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings, king-size beds with soft linens and plush pillows, smart TVs, sun decks, outdoor showers, swish bathrooms and 24 hour personal butler service. Many of the other choices well match, if not surpass, the style and sophistication of the overwaters though just without the novelty of having the ocean directly under your feet. The beachside suites in particular are extremely opulent and very much worth considering if the overwaters are not free. PRICES: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos, on the resort’s own website (Sandals) here, and on their Expedia.com page here. Note: Like all luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean the overwater bungalows at Sandals Grande St. Lucian are incredibly sought after – Covid-19 notwithstanding, for the 2021 season you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. FACILITIES & THINGS TO DO: Sandals Grande St. Lucian is a huge resort with 311 accommodation units, twelve restaurants and six bars including a British Pub and a swim-up pool bar. All of this is all-inclusive of course and the quality and variety of the food is impressive, as is the ever READ MORE