“To get to the beach, you’ll have to take the elevator,” Curaçao travel expert, Eugene, chuckled as he pulled his van up to my Willemstad hotel.
A perplexed furrow in my brow, I gazed out at the ocean, just beyond the road, and then up at the (affiliate) Renaissance Curaçao Resort & Casino.
“That’s not possible,” I replied. “How the heck can there be a beach up THERE if the ocean is down HERE?”
Eugene grinned cryptically. “Get in the elevator and see for yourself,” said he.
Ever the obedient tourist, I waved to my friend and trotted through the rainbow-splotched hotel lobby, directly into the upward chute.
As the elevator sped upwards, I pondered the second-story beach riddle. Was this mythical raised beach a slide from the second floor down to the sea? A tunnel? A sinkhole? A hologram? It didn’t make sense.
The silver doors slid open with a smug, “You’ll see,” and I strode down the hall.
“The beach is this way,” cooed signs on the walls. I followed their instructions, and exited the hotel back into the Caribbean sun, but this time, two stories up… and suddenly on a beach!
Sure enough, it looked just like, well… a beach. But there was something odd: Halfway to the horizon, there was a line where the azure water turned sapphire. This called for an investigation.
As I write, I am currently seeking another synonym for the fact that I began walking down the silvery wood boardwalk separating the two parts of the water. “Walking” is such a mundane word for the vacation elation I felt.
Let’s say I was “gliding”, shall we? I glid. It was all very graceful.
Despite the grace of my stride, I remained perplexed. To my left, the Caribbean blue water stretched along the sandy beach. There was not a strand of seaweed in sight, however. Not a single sea urchin to poke a toe.
Why, this beach was so perfect, it looked almost like a… swimming pool. Just look at it glisten here:
As I looked to the section of the beach to my right, however, it all clicked into place. Where the light blue met the dark blue, a swimming man was dangling his arms.
“This whole beach is actually a giant infinity pool!” I gasped. The two-story-up platform was meticulously sculpted to hold all that water and powdery sand, transported up here for full beach effect. What a feat of engineering!
I raced to the back of the infinity beach and looked down to see if there was a way to get another view of the structure.
The bright colors of the walls greeted me as if to proclaim, “Isn’t our pool awesome?“
“It sure is,” I told those walls telepathically as I bounded down the steps and out of the hotel.
From the public park down the street from the Renaissance Curaçao, I ogled the back-side of the ingenious pool. Check it out in the photo below so you get how it’s structured: The ledge in the middle, next to the palm tree, is the edge of the “infinity beach” that the man was leaning off of.
See how far below the actual ocean is? Since the hotel is on a hill, it may even be higher up than two stories!
From this vantage point, I could understand why the infinity beach was so important. Though Curaçao has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, the particular swath of ocean that the hotel sits next to is craggy and rough.
No amount of landscaping the actual beach would make it work for a resort. It’s a rather inspiring life lesson: If the beach you’re dealt is too rough, build your own beach, two stories up!
Not one to pass up an immersive experience, I popped by my balcony-beautiful hotel room to change into my bathing suit and try the infinity beach out for myself. Delicious!
On a practical note, I would highly recommend the Renaissance Curacao Resort & Casino to Curaçao travelers for its beauty, ideal location right in the center of a great part of Willemstad, friendliness, and surprising affordability.
So what do you think? Have you traveled to the ABC Islands? Ever seen an infinity beach before? Are you tempted to try it? Do share!
I was a guest of the Curaçao Tourist Board, but all opinions and plentiful synonyms for “walked” are my own.
The author, Lillie Marshall, is 6-foot-tall National Board Certified Teacher of English, fitness fan, and mother of two who has been a public school educator since 2003. She launched Around the World “L” Travel and Life Blog in 2009, and over 3.7 million readers have now visited this site. Lillie also runs TeachingTraveling.com and DrawingsOf.com. Subscribe to her monthly newsletter, and follow @WorldLillie on social media!