Spectacular, individually designed rooms—some with fourth walls open to the stunning Pitons view—peek out of the thick rain forest that cascades down a steep hillside to the beach. So it's delightfully peaceful here; in fact, it’s fairly isolated due to the rugged (to put it mildly) dirt-road access. It’s an adult-oriented environment, as well. Kids must be age 10; during July–September, age six. Diving, jungle biking through the estate's 600 acres, and ocean kayaking are premier sports activities; chocolate lovers will enjoy the on-site "bean to bar" plantation tour.
YOU SHOULD KNOW There’s a steep climb up the hillside to most rooms and 100 steps between reception and the beach—but shuttle service is always available.
Each room is unique in shape, size, and décor, although each is similarly furnished with clay tile floors, straw mat rugs, handmade wooden furniture, four-poster beds with mosquito netting, madras fabrics, and colorful local artwork. Deluxe hillside rooms have a tree house feel—room 3C actually has a live tree growing right through the room. Louvered walls catch the breeze; some have an open fourth wall for a full Piton view. Piton Pool Suites have the open fourth wall in a separate sitting area—plus an 8x16-foot plunge pool. A dozen rooms are at beach level.
YOU SHOULD KNOW All rooms have a mini-fridge, none of the rooms has a TV or phone, and only beachfront rooms have air-conditioning.
Bathrooms are large but, like the rooms, vary in size and shape. Each has an impressive walk-in shower—some with glass-brick walls, some with no walls, and some open to the view. The Piton Pool Suites have twin rainfall showerheads. All have a vanity with double sinks—some with modern vessel sinks—and lots of mirrors. Some have a bidet. Bathrobes, slippers, and Molton Brown toiletries are provided.
Reception is at mid-height on the hill, with the beach and two restaurants 100 steps down and hillside guestrooms above. The Treehouse Restaurant and Piton Bar are just off the lobby. There’s a small boutique with “made in St. Lucia” souvenirs and a lounge with a small art gallery, a few books, and computers for guest use.
The road leading to reception branches off to the beach. A shuttle is available for guests who prefer not to walk up to hillside rooms or down to (and up from) the beach.
Guests can rejuvenate at the Kai Belte Spa, which offers massages, scrubs, wraps, and aromatherapy in five treatment rooms or in an open-air hillside cabana overlooking the sea.
Guests may use the very sleek fitness center located at Jade Mountain, an upscale sister resort that shares the hillside. There’s also a lighted tennis court. Yoga classes are held twice a day at an open-air yoga pavilion on the beach.
Guests can rent a bike to explore the hillside trails that trace the property or join a “jungle biking” tour with Bike St. Lucia, based at the resort.
The Treehouse Restaurant, just off the lobby, serves breakfast and dinner. At the beach, Trou au Diable is a casual restaurant serving lunch and snacks during the day and dinner some evenings. Some nights, a section of Trou au Diable becomes Apsara, which serves a blend of East Indian and Caribbean cuisines in a romantic candlelit atmosphere. On Anse Mamin Beach, enjoy a burger and beer at Jungle Grill, an open-air beach bar with picnic tables.
Piti Piton Bar, adjacent to the Treehouse Restaurant at the lobby level, is a perfect place to enjoy a cool drink while gazing at the view. For a closer view of the sea, beachside Trou au Diable Bar is open all day and into the evening.
Anse Chastanet Beach, directly in front of the resort, is a golden-sand beach with lounge chairs shaded by thatched “umbrellas” for guest use. The beach also attracts people from nearby hotels and elsewhere who come by boat for a day at the beach or, just as likely, to scuba dive. Scuba St. Lucia, a PADI dive center, is based here. The waters just offshore are part of the marine reserve and are full of fish, so the beach is great for snorkeling and swimming. Kayaks, sailboats, and windsurfers are available at the water-sports center. The bar and restaurant are adjacent to the beach. A walkway along the beach brings you to Anse Mamin, a second beach just north of the first.
Be prepared for the bone-rattling dirt road between town and the resort. There is a helipad, so you can get from/to the airport by helicopter if you prefer. A water taxi offers an alternative way into town. Join a tour or rent a car to access the iconic sites in Soufrière and elsewhere on your own. Opt for a taxi if you want to go north to Anse la Raye, Marigot Bay, Castries, or Rodney Bay, as the mountain road is narrow, winding, and downright dizzying. Land taxis and water taxis are always available. Airport transfers can be arranged (extra cost).
Guests have a few nearby options for lunch or dinner. At the end of the dirt road leading into the resort, The Hummingbird (5-minute drive)—in the resort of the same name—has a popular restaurant specializing in Creole cuisine. Nearby, Orlando’s (5-minute drive) specializes in exquisite Caribbean cuisine using local, sustainable products; it’s fine dining in a casual atmosphere.
Farther afield, on the south side of Soufrière, Dasheene at Ladera Resort and Boucan at Hotel Chocolat (15-minute drive)—across the road from each other—offer unique dining experiences: the majestic Pitons view from Dasheene and the chocolate-inspired menu at Boucan. A little farther south, Bamboo & Cocoa Pod at Fond Doux Estate (20-minute drive), a historic plantation, offers a purely local experience.
Each Friday evening in Anse la Raye, a small fishing village a few miles south of Marigot Bay, the main street is blocked off for a street festival, called Anse la Raye Seafood Friday (35-minute drive). Residents set up barbecue grills and picnic tables and serve up grilled fish, lobster, roasted corn, boiled crayfish, and more. There’s usually live music, too. (Take a taxi to/from Anse la Raye…the winding mountain roads are not safe at night for novice drivers in St. Lucia. In fact, a water taxi is a better choice.)
The nearby bar at Hummingbird Beach Resort (5-minute drive) is open every day and evening—and has live entertainment and dancing on Wednesday nights. It’s recommended that guests not visit local bars in town.
WHY WE LIKE IT
We love the view of the Pitons from the guestrooms, particularly those with no fourth wall. And while it has a well-deserved “romantic” reputation, the resort also attracts serious divers who want to be as close to the action as possible.