Sandals Grande St. Lucian

Dec 14th, 2002, 12:24 PM
  #1  
Marina
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Sandals Grande St. Lucian

Hello and thank you in advance for anyone who has comments or suggestions about Sandals
Grande St. Lucian. We're looking at a week
in January there and would love to hear from
anyone who's visited. We've never been to a
Sandals property, we did "Couples Ocho Rios"
and thoroughly enjoyed it a few years ago.
How are the rooms, food, entertainment, beach? Thanks so much to everyone who could kindly post a reply here.
 
Dec 15th, 2002, 09:16 AM
  #2  
Connie
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Check out www.tropictravelonline.com and www.caribbean-on-line.com/forums. There are some pictures and trip reports that you might find helpful. We'll be there Jan 18-24.
 
Dec 16th, 2002, 06:07 AM
  #3  
islander
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Well if you're looking for a great beach, St. Lucia is not the place to go. The island is lush tropical with rainforests, great if you're looking for some place to explore and get away from the resort.

If a great beach is a must, you may want to check out Sandals Antigua. We just returned from there 2 months ago and had a wonderful time. The resort has a great laid back and romantic charm to it and we loved Antigua. Good luck and enjoy your vacation!
 
Dec 16th, 2002, 07:23 AM
  #4  
Paul
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We just returned from Sandals Grande St. Lucian. We have visited many islands (Kauai, Maui, Oahu, Bermuda, Virgin Gorda, St. Thomas, St. John, Grand Cayman, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, etc.) and our recent trip to St. Lucia was the only poor experience. I would highly recommend staying away from the Sandals Grande and instead go to the Hilton on the other end of the island between the two Pitons. It was absolutely beautiful and the food and service was wonderful. Snorkeling and beach were also much better than Sandals Grande. I have heard very mixed reports on the Grande, it seems to just depend when you go you may be lucky and hit a good week or you may hit a bad week. But I've never heard any negatives about the Hilton, seems to be managed better and more consistency in the service. Good luck and happy travels!
 
Dec 16th, 2002, 09:25 PM
  #5  
anonymous
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this is the first negative report about the grande i have heard. I am not dismissing your experience, i just find it out of the ordinary. I for one would enjoy the shaded area of the pool. Sounds like you got the staff on a bad week.
 
Dec 17th, 2002, 09:00 AM
  #6  
Paul
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Yes, you are probably right it may have just been a bad week. I've never been on a vacation where they had a line in the lobby waiting to see the management like they did at Sandals Grande. 11 couples left the resort during our week and switched to another hotel. One couple who was there on their honeymoon were so upset they tried to fly home early but the airline was going to charge them more than $1,000 to change their flights so they ended up staying. It was such a negative and sad atmosphere, never experienced anything like it before.
 
Dec 17th, 2002, 01:20 PM
  #7  
stephanie
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Were you at Sandals Grande during the photo shoot? I just returned and thought it was one of the nicest places I have stayed at in the Caribbean. I found the staff to be very accommodating to the point where they gave every guest 3 nts comp because of the photo shoot taking place. I did not find it that disruptive other than one day when we had to move from the main pool to the quiet pool for about 2 hrs.
Sorry to hear about your experience.
 
Dec 17th, 2002, 01:30 PM
  #8  
bd
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having trusted our travel agent for many years we are also going to sandals grande in jan(19-26). she has never led us astray yet and if you check other sites
you will find this is only negative of sgsl anywhere. sometimes you make your own fun!
 
Dec 17th, 2002, 05:50 PM
  #9  
Marina
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WOW! Thank you to everyone who posted
such informative replies. This is a
great forum for honest feedback and I
sincerely appreciate it. I'm a little
nervous now because our trip is already
booked and I'm hearing some very negative responses. Does anyone think it's too late to try to find another resort instead??? Would Sandals do that for us or not?? We have never done the
Sandals vacation but thought we'd take a
chance. If anyone else is kind enough to post a reply, I'd sincerely appreciate it. Thank you so much to all
who are offering help and guidance, it
is greatly appreciated!

Marina
 
Dec 18th, 2002, 07:36 AM
  #10  
Mary
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Marina: I'd talk to your travel agent and find out if you can change to another Sandals on the island if you don't like the Grande after you get there. Of course, if you can, it would depend on room availability. There are two other Sandals resorts on the island, not too far away from the Grande. But I think your travel agent is the best person to ask, that is if you went through a travel agent. Otherwise, check with Sandals directly if you can. Maybe you could divide your trip and stay at two different Sandals. That would give you a good comparison too.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 05:27 AM
  #11  
Fran
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It depends what you're looking for. We did like the rooms at Sandals Grande, they were modern and nice but overall we preferred Sandals Halcyon because the environment was much nicer. People seemed to be having fun whereas Sandals Grande a lot of people were complaining. It's more difficult to enjoy yourself when so many people are unhappy and complaining.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 06:13 AM
  #12  
donna
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Fran, were you there also during the photo shoot? Or were people complaining at the Grande about other things?
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 06:51 AM
  #13  
Maria
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We've traveled a good bit and are very used to "island time" and don't mind that it takes longer for everything in the islands. We normally enjoy the relaxed laid back pace. But the Sandals Grande St. Lucia was particularly slow. Check in took more than an hour. Then it took another hour to get our first pieces of luggage. Our last piece of luggage didn't arrive for almost four hours.

During our repeat guest dinner they ran out of champagne right after serving my husband half of a glass (he was lucky, three guests at our table didn't get served any) and they didn't get around to bringing more champagne until the meal was almost over. They also ran out of appetizers and several guests at our table didn't receive their appetizers until they were clearing the plates of the guests who had been served first. All of the courses came out that way and eventually they worked out a system by final course where they served all the ladies first and then served the men. It was very odd. lol Not exactly sure why or what was happening behind the scenes. The food itself was excellent and the dessert especially was both delicious and a beautiful presentation.

Our A/C unit stopped working and was not able to be repaired. We had to sleep with the balcony doors open because it was so hot in our room. We went home covered in mosquito bites.

We were in a suite concierge room, the first day the mini bar was fully stocked. That was the only day it was fully stocked. We repeatedly asked them to fill it and we would have a few items added but it was never refilled completely. At least we didn't run out of toilet paper as we heard many guests complaining. lol

The bathroom had double sinks which was a good thing since one of them didn't work.

All-in-all these weren't horrible things by any means but for the price we paid it was a very disappointing overall experience. We probably will not return to Sandals.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 10:09 AM
  #14  
Janette
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Now I'm worried. My husband and I went to the Sandals Golf Resort and Spa last year and loved it and are looking forward to going to the Grande resort January 18th. They do however say that for every person with a complaint, 10 more were very satisfied (as people with complaints are more likely to voice their opinion louder) - I hope that's the reason. I do know however, that if you were not happy with the grande and there was space at the other resorts, sandals will let you transfer.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 10:52 AM
  #15  
PM
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I'm not knocking Sandals Grande or St. Lucia but now that we've been there we would choose another destination. Maybe if they get some more non stop flights we would consider going back but as it is now it takes too long to get to St. Lucia and then it's another hour and forty minutes to the resort from the international airport. From the east coast it took us less time to get to Hawaii than St. Lucia.

We'll go back to St. John, in 4 hours we're on the beach vs. 14 hours to St. Lucia. Plus St. John was better snorkeling.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 01:06 PM
  #16  
chesney-AAA
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I am quite suprised by the negative comments on this property. I just had some clients return from a 11 night stay (honeymoon)in November, and they loved the place. They said they were hearing complaints about some of the other Sandals properties. They said they enjoyed having the most in restaurant choices at the Grande. I agree with a previos poster, that said sometimes you make your own fun too. I am a travel agent, so talk to yours about changing hotels if you don't feel comfortable staying there. If you have already paid for your trip, you may be charged for a change fee (depends on the vendor that they used). Good luck with whatever you choose.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 01:42 PM
  #17  
Michael
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My travel agent was surprised too at the number of complaints she's been receiving about the new Sandals in St. Lucia. She's checking into it to see if she can find out what's going on.
 
Dec 19th, 2002, 07:23 PM
  #18  
Reality
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To the travel agent with the clients: honeymooners. Most people on their honeymoon think everywhere is fabulous, and many are also young and havent travelled much. I'm not slamming that at all, just pointing out the obvious. I tend to remove a certain amount of exuberance from a honeymooners post. After all, they better think everything was fabulous......they are on their honeymoon. A little of the rose colored glasses syndrome.
 
Dec 20th, 2002, 03:22 AM
  #19  
johnno
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Re: the comment that it takes an hour and forty minutes to get to the Sandals from the airport -- if you are staying on the northern part of the island, try to get a flight that lands at Vigie Airport in Castries, instead of Hewanorra Airport. It's only 15 minutes from the Grande St. Lucian. I think that all of the American Eagle flights from San Juan land at Vigie. Hewanorra is a looonnngg ride from the north.
 
Dec 20th, 2002, 04:50 AM
  #20  
anon
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Most flights to St. Lucia arrive at the international airport which is one to two hours drive time from almost all hotels on the island. Keep that in mind when calculating travel time to St. Lucia.
 

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