There was a time when hunkering down in an airport hotel was the last resort for those dealing with cancelled flights and other travel mishaps. Fast forward to today and hotels with airport views are vacation gold to legions of plane spotting fans worldwide.
For heart stopping vistas of the runways in the Caribbean, check out and check into our six-pack of the best hotels with airport views under the tropical sun.
Plane spotting paradise
St. Barths Airport (SBH)
A beach is a beach is a beach unless the beach is right next to the airport and where topping off your tan comes with mesmerizing views of the beachfront runway.
Pearl Beach Hotel
Fronting Saint Jean Beach on the petite French island of St. Barth, Pearl Beach Hotel is 3 minutes from the Gustave III Airport, also known as Saint Barthélemy Airport. Eye candy for fans of flying, the hotel is stylish in 14 rooms from garden views to beachfront suites and popular for Sunday night barbecues on the white sandy beach and Latino French fare at the restaurant.
“The planes arrive just in front of us,“
said Marion Flamme, hotel manager,
“it is really cool to watch.”
The peak times to see the planes from the beach is between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Tarmac to take-off
Isla Grande Airport (SIG), Puerto Rico
Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino
Close enough to the Isla Grande Airport to see it; Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino hits the bullseye for those on the hunt for fabulous views of the planes flying to the smaller islands of Culebra and Vieques.
A single-runway airport that sees more than 100,000 passengers each year, Aeropuerto de Isla Grande was the island’s main airport until 1954 when the Luis Munoz Marin International Airport opened.
“The Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino enjoys one of the best positions along the San Juan Bay to watch planes on departure and final approach into the Aeropuerto de Isla Grande,”
said Roberto Mosquera, general manager,
“Better yet, some of the furnished balconies mean guests can stand outside to snap an unobstructed photo, as well our Executive Lounge offers panoramic scenes of the many planes parked at remote stands waiting for passengers.”
One-stop-vacation-shopping with a spa, steakhouse and sushi bar, the primo perch for flight fanatics is at the Bay Pool Bar & Grille where the rooftop pool offers unrivalled panoramas of the planes as they glide over the bay.
Note to diehards: ask for a room facing the runway and you’ll be treated to breathtaking views from the balcony.
Attention airport aficionados
Aruba Airport (AUA)
Hyatt Place Aruba Airport
It’s all about location, location and location at the brand new Hyatt Place Aruba Airport. A convenient 5-minute walk from the Queen Beatrix International Airport, 116-room hotel is brand-reliable with Hyatt’s signature breakfast buffet for World of Hyatt members, The Bar open from 6 am to midnight and an outdoor pool for a dip after a long flight. Aviation fans in the know make a beeline for the lounge for views of the runways and air traffic control tower.
Aviation fans in the know make a beeline for the lounge for views of the runways and air traffic control tower.
San Juan Airport (SJU), Puerto Rico
Fairmont El San Juan Hotel
The name may change but the runway views remain the same at the El San Juan in Puerto Rico. Rebranded as the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel, the iconic hotel is beachfront on Isla Verde, 15 minutes from Old San Juan and 5 minutes from the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport.
A beacon during the 1960’s for American glitterati from Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole to Carol Channing and Liza Minelli, the 388-room hotel is redesigned with a quartet of pools, spa, restaurants, nightclub and a bar on the 11th floor where fans of flights watch the action at the busiest airport in the Caribbean.
Baggage carousel to the beach
St. Maarten Airport (SXM), St. Maarten
Sonesta Sint Maarten Resorts
Along the southwest shore of Sint Maarten, Sonesta Sint Maarten Resorts are so close to the Princess Juliana International Airport that you can identify the planes overhead without having to squint, even on a sunny afternoon.
The largest resorts on the Dutch side of the dual-nation island, the all –inclusives are a tour-de-force with 420 rooms and suites at the family-friendly Sonesta Maho Beach and 130 at the adjacent adults-only Sonesta Ocean Point.
Maho Beach, the best Caribbean beach and hotel airport view
Upping the ante for aviation aficionados, cockpit gawkers gather on Maho Beach; the only place in the world where you can stand 100 feet below the path of an airplane.
Morgan Resort & Spa, a new hotel with a Caribbean runway view!
Opening in March, Morgan Resort & Spa is also minutes from the airport promising optimum views of the busy runways. Across the street from the Sunset Bar & Grill where fans of air travel meet and greet as the big jets soar overhead, the new 124-room resort is unique with a swim up bar outfitted with a blackjack table, underwater music system and the piece-de-resistance for aviation geeks;
there’s a rooftop observation deck for uninterrupted views of the runways.
Rooms with a view
Punta Cana Airport (PUJ), Dominican Republic
Four Points by Sheraton Puntacana Village
A 2 minute drive from the Punta Cana International Airport in the Dominican Republic, Four Points by Sheraton Puntacana Village is tops for grand runway views.
From comfy rooms to spacious suites, the hotel is full-service with a fitness center, spa, bar and restaurant.
”Because The Four Points by Sheraton Puntacana Village is between the airport and the vegetation of the region, there is a partial view to the runway and airport from the west side of the hotel which is a great area for plane spotting from afar,”
said Yarik Rabanales, general manager,
“while many guests prefer the island vistas, fans of aviation know to request an airport view room.”
Keeping the theme, there’s a Crew Lounge with clocks marking various time zones and Puntacana Airport VIP Lounge Pool that opens at 7 am for sunrise views of the planes.
About the Author
Melanie Reffes is an island girl at heart. Born in Manhattan, she now lives on the sunny island of Montreal and covers the Caribbean for a variety of publications including Montreal’s The Suburban; largest English-language weekly in Quebec, USA TODAY TRAVEL, USA TODAY 10BEST, Captain Jetson Aviation & Travel, CaribbeanTravel.com and MarryCaribbean.com. She is also the nominating judge for the seven categories in the BEST of the Caribbean annual readers poll in USA TODAY. A journalist with a boatload of writer awards under her belt, Melanie’s affection for the Caribbean started young when her family vacationed in Puerto Rico. Melanie holds a Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Toronto. You can find her via Twitter @Reffes1, Instagram melanietravel2019, Facebook melanie.reffes and LinkedIn melaniereffes.
Featured Image: Maho Beach, St. Maarten. Spectacular Caribbean airport views from the best hotels. Credit: Unsplash.
Have you been to any Caribbean hotel that you found to be excellent for airport views? Which Caribbean airport view hotel is the best one for planespotters? Please let us know! You can contact Captain Jetson Airline and Travel News here.
Where is the best Caribbean plane spotter runway view?
Maho Beach in St. Maarten is considered to have the best planespotting runway view in the Caribbean. Visitors to Maho Beach can watch airplanes land and takeoff from just a few feet away from the runway. The name of the airport is Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM).
What’s the beach in St. Maarten where planespotters watch planes?
The name of this perhaps world’s most famous planespotting airport is Maho Beach. The name of the airport is Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM). Maho Beach is located on the Dutch side of the Island of St. Maarten, also referred to as Sint Maarten. The northern French part of the St. Maarten is an overseas territory of France, often referred to as Saint Martin.
What airports can you fly into for St. Maarten?
If you fly to the Dutch side of the Island of St. Maarten, also referred to as Sint Maarten, you’d fly into Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM). The northern part of St. Maarten is an overseas territory of France, also referred to as Saint Martin. The airport to fly into for French St. Maarten is Grand Case-Espérance Airport, a small regional passenger airport.
What is a plane spotter?
A plane spotter is a person who enjoys looking at airplanes take off fly overhead, land, and taxi. In other words, a fan of airplanes, also referred to as an “AvGeek”. Airplane spotters are often accompanied by their cameras, to take pictures of the airplanes they have spotted. Some planespotters go as far as identifying the airplane types, models, and the airlines they spot.