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This Palladian-style plantation house was built with hand-cut coral stone in 1834 by sugar cane baron Edmund Haynes and is set high on a hillside, with approximately 15 acres of lush gardens surrounding the buildings. It has panoramic views, including a view across 7 miles to the Atlantic Ocean.
The Barbados Government owned the property from 1907 until former Prime Minister of Britain, Sir Anthony Eden purchased it in 1965. During his residency, renovations were carried out until its sale in 1971.
After a multi-million dollar restoration project aimed at preserving the property’s colonial heritage, in the spring of 2001, Villa Nova re-opened its doors to the public.
Villa Nova has hosted guests such as Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, British playwright Noel Coward, Sir Winston Churchill and former Prime Minister of Britain, Tony Blair.
The property’s main buildings consist of the original building, the Great House, and a 12-room Park House. The Great House includes a grand dining room, bar area and 15 guest rooms with high ceilings, large bathrooms with bathtub and separate walk-in shower and private terraces overlooking the gardens or the pool. The Great House can also accommodate conference rooms, a library and a fitness room. There is also a gazebo, a full-length pool, two all-weather tennis courts, a security hut and a parking lot that can accommodate approximately 50 vehicles. There are 9 detached spa buildings of timber construction set within a tangled forested area of bearded fig, mahogany and mango trees.
Interior Designer Nina Campbell and a team of internationally acclaimed health professionals designed the spa area. This led Villa Nova to win the title of “Caribbean’s Leading Boutique Hotel” at the 2004 World Travel Awards.
Other organised activities included golf, deep-sea fishing, heritage tours, horseback riding, tennis and watersports. On a quiet evening, one can relax and enjoy the ambience and tranquil setting of a private terrace overlooking the lush gardens.
Before the transformation of the plantation house into a hotel, Villa Nova was used as an “Open House” where thousands of patrons would gather to explore the surroundings and view the grand architecture and the vintage furniture, each piece with its own historical significance. Cultural lessons on the antiquity, magic, serenity and ambience that surrounds the plantation house now restored into the Villa Nova hotel, were always the highpoint of the tour of this grandiose Barbadian property.
The Villa Nova Hotel is a superb property, offering a variety of revenue-making opportunities. The property has an extra touch of glamour, elegance, charm and sophistication that would make it amenable to many options: a unique five-star hotel, a serene medical retreat or a lavish setting for several special events, long or short term rentals. Although closed since 2008, the property has been reasonably well-maintained. Minimal repairs, particularly to the roof, refurbishing work, redecorating and landscaping would return Villa Nova to a functional state.
Main hotel site: 14.55 acres (633,798 sq. ft)
Additional land: 0.034 acres (1,470 sq. ft)
Total: 14.58 acres (635,105 sq. ft)
Gross building area: 0.80 acres (34,827 sq. ft)