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Island Time

Consider Curacao for your next travel adventure

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I stepped off the plane in Willemstad, Curaçao. I’d heard about Curaçao before but never imagined such a beautiful island overflowing with culture and history. Located some 44 miles off the coast of Venezuela, Curaçao is the largest of the islands, both in size and in population, that make up the Dutch Caribbean. 

Everyone is welcome to share in the “Dushi” life of Curaçao. In the local Papiamentu language, Dushi is affirmational and all meanings are positive. Dushi is tasty, beautiful, sexy, sweet, delicious or just plain old nice. It is literally the favorite adjective of the island. The country of Curaçao even has a nickname: Dushi Korsou.

Willemstad, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, accommodates some 743 notable international monuments. Its rich, globally-influenced history illustrates the organic growth of a multicultural community over three centuries. Willemstad’s people and maritime history are vibrantly expressed through the city’s incredible public art installations. Beautifully colored sculptures and murals adorn the buildings, courtyards and park benches throughout this breathtaking seaside paradise – each telling a unique story of Curaçao. 

Grab a scooter and get lost amongst the pastel crayon-colored Dutch colonial buildings that give way to hidden sculpture gardens, neighborhood art galleries, painted staircases and adorned alleyways. Be sure to catch Curaçao’s  “big sister," Chichi, the ubiquitous Rubenesque lady of the island who is always portrayed with brightly patterned, vivid fabrics. Downtown Willemstad boasts some of the city’s best sites, including the one-of-a-kind Queen Emma Floating Bridge and Wilhelmina Plaza. For a real taste of the island don’t forget a local rum tasting at Annabay Club or catch an authentic island lunch at Plasa Bieu Food Hall.

Whether you feel like a quick snack or a gourmet meal, there are options. Restaurant Nultwintig with its sleek beachside dining room is the ultimate island dining experience. Artfully plated local ingredients dazzle thanks to an international team of very gifted chefs. Ceviche 91 Gastrobar lives up to its name offering creative and innovative ceviche, as well as international cuisine and tapas. Be sure to check out Number Ten Café for lunch. Located in a restored mansion located on the grounds of Landhuis Bloemhof, Number Ten is eclectically decorated and offers a simple but upscale café experience.

Curaçao is only 171 square miles, so you can really get anywhere and back in just one day. There are 38 sun-soaked beaches in Curaçao to explore. While some of the beaches are developed, most are tucked into the hidden coves that dot the island's shores. Whether taking in some sun, hiking along the rugged coastline or jet-skiing across pristine blue waters, each beach is unique and offers a glimpse into island life. The waters that surround this tiny island nation are home to expansive coral reefs brimming with marine life and are perfect for snorkeling or diving. 

Be sure to experience Shete Boka National Park’s underground seaside caverns or the beautiful beach at Playa Kenepa Chikitu. Kas di Pal’I Maishi, a plantation house that doubles as an interactive museum and village, offers visitors a chance to embrace the rural history of Curaçao while making outdoor stone oven bread, Pan Será.

After a whirlwind day, there is no better place to call home than Zöetry Curaçao Resort & Spa. This luxurious tropical paradise is the embodiment of fine service and attention to detail. A world-class resort, Zöetry celebrates the culture and heritage of the island while offering guests the highest level of personalized service. Just a quick shuttle away, you can enjoy a personal tropical paradise known as Piscadera Bay. Kick back and enjoy the amazing pool while savoring edible creations from Restaurant Botanica, or explore the island-influenced menu at Zöetry’s fine dining restaurant, Bloom. The staff at Zöetry are always there when you need them; graciously waiting to be of service.  

Curaçao is a vibrant island that offers every visitor an inner peace that flows from the soul of its people. If you haven’t already, put it at the top of your travel bucket list!