Someone said to me before I went to St. Lucia, “I do not want to see St. Lucia.” Well, it is to be experienced beyond just seen. This was my fourth time on the island and surely will go back again. Yes, it is far in the southern Caribbean, but well worth the experience. There is something about the St. Lucian people that is so very friendly and accommodating. There is always a smile and a friendly greeting. I have been to many islands over the past 25 years but none calls to me like St. Lucia. It is the best of places to heal the soul.
Island holidays are not for everyone I know but St. Lucia offers a great deal: scuba diving, snorkeling, hiking, biking, sailing, all kinds of water sports to play, water skiing, jet skiing and the like. There is a botanical garden, sulfur springs from the volcano to explore and evening dinner cruises as well as cruises to other islands.
There are also places of very quiet beauty. And this I like! The island is mountainous from all the past volcanoes and most of the hillsides are luscious green. One is either high looking down or on the beach looking up. Either way the views are spectacular. So many of the Caribbean islands are coral reefs and therefore very flat and dry. St. Lucia on the other hand is a tropical rain forest.
St. Lucia’s wonderfully unique character comes from its history https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Lucia The Carib were the first inhabitants; the French and English traded control (14 times) and then it became an independent state in 1979. As a result there is a local Creole spoken with a lot of English and French mixed in. I often say ‘Merci’ and often that someone would say, “You speak Creole!” The St. Lucian seems to have the best of the three cultures. Easy going French, organized British, great food, and a local stable government. Tourism is down a bit due to the economy so now there are great promotions and it is certainly the time to plan.
In no particular order here are my ten favorite small boutique resorts in St. Lucia. They have a variety of price tags, accommodations and amenities. Some have lots of activities and others are very quiet. A few are all inclusive and some have a meal plan. They are family owned, some by local residents. Websites are included for more information and pictures.
Cap Maison… Mediterranean looking upscale family property with a variety of accommodations; choose from a multi-room suite with a plunge pool to a quiet room, a great restaurant though a bit pricey. The best massage therapist I ever had, Julian! http://capmaison.com/
East Winds Inn… 30 very small rooms all inclusive, duplex cottages, very quiet place with a wonderful restaurant and fine service; easy access to the pool and beach. Non-motorize water sports and land games like shuffle board. http://www.islandinns.com/eastwindsinn.html
Le Sport – Body Holiday…. Probably one of the best buys on the island, not for everyone but for most! All-inclusive with daily spa treatments, motorized water sports, land options like golf, archery, beach or pool volleyball, and water aerobics. Offers single pricing. http://www.thebodyholiday.com/
Ladera… One of the most unique luxury properties in the Caribbean. With only 32 suites. The fourth wall is missing with a dramatic view of the sea between the pitons, access to the beach via a van to Sugar Beach, renowned outdoor restaurant. All rooms with plunge pools. Larger suites have been added recently. Packages with Cap Maison. http://www.ladera.com/
Anse Chastanet… A casual hillside property with views of the pitons and some rooms with the fourth wall missing. The property does not have a pool but a great gray beach and the best scuba/snorkeling on the island. Honeymooners love it.
Jade Mountain… Just above Anse Chastanet, with the same owner; a luxury version with the fourth wall missing in all and the very large rooms and plunge pools all looking at the pitons. There is access to the Anse beach. Not the rainforest feeling of Anse.
Stonefield Estates… A small quiet resort nestled in lush foliage on the hillside featuring open air private rustic villas (bedrooms have ac) with views of the petit piton, each with a plunge pool. Some villas have a full kitchen. A great place for a long stay and I recommend a car. Access to the beach at Sugar Beach.
Sugar Beach… (was Jalousie Plantation) In the past three years this is a complete rebuild with a luxury spa. It’s all white décor might be a put off to families but the large two bedrooms offer lots of space. The beach is gentle and the huge pool has lots of seating. The place in general is so big it is easy to find your own space and get lost.
Calabash Cove… A new hillside resort with lots of steps and all the amenities of a luxury resort, some rooms have direct access to an infinity pool from your patio. There are oversize suites with Jacuzzi tubs. For evening entertainment there is dancing, pool tables, and comfortable bars are some of your options.
Rendezvous … All-inclusive cousin property to Le Sport for couples only. Right on a long walking beach. Recently refurbished, though I did not see. Quieter than her cousin. http://www.rendezvousstlucia.com/