Villa Montaña Beach Resort, Isabela $$$$
Concierge.com's insider take:
Complete, total relaxation bordering on mental and physical paralysis is the specialty of Villa Montaña, located about 100 miles west of San Juan, near the JetBlue-served city of Aguadilla. This collection of 38 rooms and 43 hacienda-style villas (think tin roofs, pastel-painted stucco walls, rattan furnishings) faces a three-mile long beach where the sun literally stuns you into nonmovement. Facilitating the meltdown are the world's most comfortable beach loungers, with thick orange padding and giant yellow throw pillows. Villa Montaña is centered on a vaguely Eastern dining pavilion, decked out with Moroccan lanterns and Indonesian chaise longues, upon which guests flop around during the day in their Indian-print caftans and Marc Jacobs sunglasses, scarfing down plates of what's described as Scandinavian/Asian cuisine. It's neither, but it tastes spectacular: Try the braised grouper on a bed of garlic pasta with cremini mushrooms, and wash it down with a glass of white wine. The villas are comfy—back porches, sitting areas—with classic island decor, and are well kept up but hardly stylish. The service is abysmal. There is no service, in fact. Oddly, this flaw nearly becomes a strength after a few hours—once the voodoo of Villa Montaña takes over your soul. For example, one might arrive, saying, "Where is my ice? I need ice for my rum and Coke so I can relax!" Twenty minutes later? "I don't need ice. Not so much." One hour later? "I don't need rum. Or Coke." Three hours later? "I'll just lie here and pass out next to all these other sleeping, peaceful, rage-free people." Families and couples who don't mind surrendering to sun-infused nada (translation: no fitness center, no spa, all beach) adore Villa Montaña. Action junkies need to book elsewhere.—Leigh Newman
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