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Enjoy a Rum-Soaked Taste of Antigua This Holiday Season
Located in the heart of the Caribbean Sea, the twin-island tropical paradise of Antigua (pronounced An-tee'ga) and Barbuda (Bar-byew’da) should be on the radar of any traveler looking for a beach escape away from the masses with a different beach for every day of the year, and two distinctly different island experiences.

At just over 100 square miles, Antigua is the largest of the Leeward Islands. Its rich history includes Nelson’s Dockyard, the only remaining example of a Georgian fort, and UNESCO World Heritage site. The island’s calendar prestigious events includes Antigua Sailing Week, Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta and the local version of Carnival.

Little sister island Barbuda is a couple of dozen miles north-east of Antigua; only a 15-minute flight away or a short sail. The secluded, romantic island is famous for its pink-sand beaches and the largest Frigate Bird Sanctuary in the hemisphere. It also punches above its weight in attracting global celebrities, including actor Robert De Niro, one of the partners in the upcoming Nobu Beach Inn, to accompany the celebrity-chef Nobu Restaurant on the island.

Perhaps nothing combines Antingua and Barbuda’s culture steeped in British traditions and Antiguan-style Caribbean flavor, than its holiday black rum cake.

Visit Antigua and Barbuda and one of the country’s luxury resorts, Carlisle Bay, share with us an Antiguan version of a Caribbean holiday staple: black rum cake.

This version of the rich, moist and morish fruit cake is made using only local rum from the island's very own Antigua Distillery: a leading distillery renowned globally for their English Harbour Rum. The deep noir of this decadent dessert is achieved through the wonderful caramelization of soft sandy white sugar and cups of 5-year English Harbour rum.

It’s the perfect Christmas and fall holiday treat to warm you from the inside out with a touch of tropical decadence.

Carlisle Bay’s Black Rum Cake Ingredients
   1lb unsalted butter
   1lb white sugar
   6 free-range eggs
   2 tsp cinnamon
   1 tsp nutmeg
   2 tsp vanilla extract
   1lb plain flour
   1 tbsp baking powder
   4 tbsp food browning
   1lb dried blend mixed fruits, mainly cranberry, raisin, currant, dried citrus
   2 cups English Harbour 5-year rum

Cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add free range eggs and vanilla extract and mix.

Sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg together. Combine dry mixture to sugar, butter, egg mix until all incorporated. Add the browning & dried fruits and mix thoroughly.

Finally add the rum, taste and add more if you wish for a stronger flavor.

Place in a greased baking tin of your choice and cover with greaseproof paper. Bake at 280 degrees (Fahrenheit.) for 40-60 minutes, checking regularly til set. The ideal internal temperature of the cake is 205-210 degrees Fahrenheit.

For a truly authentic Antiguan confection, soak your dried fruit in the rum for as long as possible in advance. It is not unheard of for Antiguans to start the soaking step in January or even ahead of baking! But don’t worry if you haven’t started a whole year in advance, this rum cake will be a winning treat on your holiday table.

Rum goes in the cake - and with the cake when served! Treat your family and holiday guests to a shot of vintage English Harbour Rum on the side, drizzle the cake with rich cream and rum-infused caramel sauce; and you could even go as far as to pour more English Harbour Rum on top, the more the merrier!

What other travel recipes have become part of your culinary repertoire?

No matter what your family traditions, wishing you a happy holiday season!

Images courtesy Carlisle Bay

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Antigua and Barbuda But Should Its official language is English while its governance system is Parliamentary democracy. The head of State is Queen Elizabeth II of UK. read more
Points of Interest in Antigua Long long ago, the Ciboney people were the ancestral owners of the Island of Antigua. They would later be followed by the Arawaks, then the Caribs and much later by the Spaniards. The Caribs referred to Antigua as 'Waladli or Wadadli'. read more
Galley Bay Resort & Spa Three quarter mile white sand beach, warm Caribbean water, 40 acres of tropical gardens are some of the things that Galley Bay Resort and Spa boasts. read more
Three Local Restaurants You Must Check Out in Antigua and Barbuda Welcome to Antigua and Barbuda and experience authentic French hospitality in the heart of the Caribbean. It would seem the islanders has one up on the French since they have allowed culinary influence from their surrounding neighbors. Their food is rich, tasty and classy. read more
Uncover the History Behind Antigua and Barbuda Antigua and Barbuda is Spanish for 'Ancient and Bearded'. read more

Visit our booth at Canada's Bridal Show on January 3, 4 & 5, 2014 for a chance to WIN!

Click here to download the flyer



Hermitage Bay in Antigua is inarguably the perfect blend of luxury and nature. With only 25 cottages dotting its unspoiled landscape, the resort is a great options for anyone who is looking to escape the noise and tumult of active cities. Its remote location offers serenity and peace.


One of the resort staff's main concerns is in making you feel as though you belong. Like returning home for a much-anticipated holiday, stepping into the resort gives you the notion that you are part of the family.

The suites, constructed with natural woods from the Guyana forests may seem modest, but there is no mistaking the luxurious furnishings or unobstructed views of the sandy beach and sea. With no lack of necessary amenities and additional treasures one wouldn't expect, you'll find yourself carried away to a perfect world of relaxation without concerns about what you're missing back home.


Of course, the resort would be incomplete without the unforgettable cuisine that is served at the on-site al fresco restaurant. With a menu covering Caribbean, European, and even American fare, there is sure to be many options to whet your palate.

During your stay, don't forget to do yourself a favour and try out a meditation class or work your body in a Yoga or Pilates session.


Book your stay at Hermitage Bay Resort today!

As its name suggests, the Sugar Ridge hotel is situated on the side of a hill fenced-in with natural sugar cane. It's prime position on the hillside offers spectacular views of nearby beaches with stunning aquamarine waters and the islands surrounding it.


Luxury rooms are decked out in rich drapings, colonial accents, and deep woods to make any guest feel like royalty. Take your pick of an upper-floor room with a dining deck and spacious veranda, or opt for a lower-level room and take advantage of a private plunge pool.


Your dining needs are easily met at Carmichael's – Sugar Ridge's fine dining option. The food is second-to-none, and the views of the sea, resort, and stunning sunset make y our dining experience memorable. There is also a swimming pool next to the bar area. If you are just looking for a quick lunch, Sugar Club has the perfect menu and atmosphere.


For ultimate pampering, visit the spa where you can get active in the fitness centre or enjoy holistic or beauty treatments. Sundecks, swimming pools and cabanas make a day at the spa a complete relaxation retreat.


Sugar Ridge hotel hosts weddings, too. With a great venue, panoramic backdrops, and catered meals, your wedding can be the one people remember long after the “I do's”.


Book your stay at Sugar Ridge hotel today!