The Dominican Republic. Beaches. Baseball. A luxurious European-style Victorian manor with antique appointments from around the world, an impeccable full-service staff, and grounds fit for an equatorial remake of Gone with the Wind. Jutting out from the country's northern shores is the Samaná Peninsula, a small finger of land known for its many beaches, three rivers and majestic waterfall, and The Peninsula House.
Just six suites, all individually decorated with eclectic art and rich furniture, fill the plantation-style Peninsula House, which rounds out its stately size with cozy parlors, a library, a dining room and bar, a roomy central courtyard, and a veranda overlooking lush private gardens. The gardens meander out to a swimming area teeming with cushy manicured lawns instead of abrasive concrete, the House's crystalline swimming pool, and an equally charming colonial-faced cabana. Views of the Atlantic off in the distance sneak in throughout the property's 15 acres of verdant hills.
Meals at The Peninsula House are an experience unto themselves. Breakfast on the porch might include a spread of delectable pastries and exotic fruits and juices, a gourmet trend that continues during lunch a few miles away at the getaway's shorefront Beach Restaurant, and dinner back again in the guesthouse dining room. Fresh squeezed passion fruit in a glass to start the morning segues into the last bite of the day as frozen passion fruit in dish of after-dinner ice cream. The spectacle of seafood and ocean-inspired cuisine in between .
Things to Do on the Samaná Peninsula
The Samaná Peninsula comprises some of the many idyllic beachfront villages that dot the Northeastern Coast of the Dominican Republic. Miles of beaches, 20 dive sites, and access to some of the world’s foremost ecological parks are among the region's features. Excursions and activities to pass the time include:
- Whale watching in Samaná Bay.
- Visting Samaná's picturesque El Limón waterfall
- Traipsing through the Los Haitises National Park, part of the largest estuary in the insular Caribbean at 80 square miles of protected land.
- SCUBA diving with Dominican turtles and other sea critters.
Oh, Balls! I Can't Go to the Samaná Peninsula
If time, funding, or a crotchety travel partner prohibit you from enjoying the wonders of the Samaná Peninsula, here are some alternatives to its most popular activities.
- Instead of whale watching, acquire one of these.
- Instead of visiting a waterfall, take an outdoor shower.
- Instead of trekking 'round one the world's largest estuaries, use the Internet look up what the hell an estuary is. And let us know once you find out.
- Instead of SCUBA diving in the Atlantic, Snorkel Hookah in your local pond or bathtub.
- Instead of kitesurfing, try couchsurfing.
- Instead of spelunking, try watching that scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade when Indy and Elsa are wading knee deep through the rat-filled catacombs underneath the library, and alleviate the urge to explore caves altogether.
- The Peninsula House Guesthouse: http://www.thepeninsulahouse.com/guesthouse.html
- The Peninsula House Review on Conde Nast: http://www.cntraveler.com/hotels/caribbean/dominican-republic/peninsula-house-las-ter...
- The Peninsula House Reservations: http://thepeninsulahouse.com/reservations.html
- The Peninsula House Beach Restaurant: http://thepeninsulahouse.com/beach_restaurant.html
- The Peninsula House Activities: http://www.thepeninsulahouse.com/activities.html
- Samana Bay Whale Watching: http://www.whalesamana.com/
- Samana's El Limon Waterfall: http://www.samana.org.do/el-limon.htm
- Los Haitises National Park: http://www.easyvoyage.co.uk/dominican-republic/los-haitises-national-park-3951
- Samana Peninsula Restaurants, Bars & Clubs: http://gosamana-dominicanrepublic.com/restaurants-samana.html