Fodor's Expert Review St. James's Club Morgan Bay

Choc Bay, Choc, Gros-Islet, St. Lucia, Choc, Gros Islet, St. Lucia See on Map

Jane Zarem

Families and couples alike enjoy the tons of amenities at this all-inclusive resort on 22 secluded acres surrounding a stretch of white-sand beach just north of Castries. All manner of activities on land or water are available day and night—including a supervised children's club and some pools and restaurants for adults only.

room

Accommodations, each with a private balcony or terrace, are in several buildings set among tropical gardens or facing the beachfront. Rooms are nearly identical except for the location, and all offer an amazing view. Furnishings are not what you’d call super stylish but are pleasant enough. Larger suites have sitting areas with sofa beds; interconnecting family suites are also available. Each room or suite has a mini-fridge.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Wi-Fi is available only in some rooms and for a fee.

bathroom

Tiled bathrooms each have a tub/shower combo and counter with a single sink and basket of toiletries. The bathrooms are fairly small but certainly functional.

lobby

The lobby has seating areas near the reception desk; the lobby extends into a large, open-air guest lounge with tile floors, ceiling fans, seating, and a white board posted with the day’s activities.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Wi-Fi is complimentary only in the lobby area and the Sunset Lounge and Bar.

pool

Four swimming pools are situated throughout the property. Two large free-form pools are near the beach—one has a swim-up bar. Another pool near the kids’ club has a waterslide, and a lagoon-style pool in a particularly scenic hillside location is reserved for adults.

You can buy pool toys and floats in the gift shop.

spa

Tranquility Body & Soul Spa, tucked away on the hillside, offers a variety of treatments: massages (including bamboo, hot stones, chocolate, and four-hand), aromatherapy, facials, salt scrubs, seaweed wraps, reflexology, salon services, and more. Teen services include facials, massage, and mani/pedi. Ladies and men can also schedule a full day of treatments.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Spa services cost extra.

gym

The large, modern fitness center is well equipped with cardio and strength machines that include a rowing machine, leg press, elliptical machines, treadmills, stationary bikes, bench press, free weights, punching bag, and more. A yoga deck is adjacent. Guests may join group classes in yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, dance, spinning, boot camp, and more. A personal trainer is available at extra charge

You can also get your exercise playing tennis—there are four lighted courts and a tennis pro who can help you with your game.

dining

The resort has six restaurants, five of which are alfresco: The Palms is the resort's main buffet-style restaurant; the waterfront Bambou serves Caribbean-Asian fusion fare; Treetops offers pizza and pasta; poolside Plum Tree Bar & Grill is open all day; and Morgan's Pier, which juts out into the bay, specializes in seafood (dinner only). Le Jardin, for adults only, serves French-Creole specialties (dinner only) in a romantic, air-conditioned atmosphere—and charges a supplement.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Room service is available for an extra charge.

drinking

All of the restaurants have bar service. In addition, there’s the Tiki Bar at the beach, the swim-up Lazy Lagoon Pool Bar at the main pool near the beach, Plum Tree Bar at the family pool, and the Hilltop Pool Bar at the adults-only hillside pool. Sunset Bar & Lounge—the main bar—is the gathering place for the resort’s nightly entertainment. Choc Bay Café is a coffee and tea bar that serves sweet and savory pastries all day and evening and full afternoon tea with sandwiches and fruit.

beach

The beach has golden sand, and the sea is calm—making it good for swimming for both kids and adults. Waterskiing, sailing (Hobie Cat), kayaking, wakeboarding, windsurfing, paddleboarding, snorkeling, banana-boat rides, and more—including lessons—are all part of the all-inclusive deal.

YOU SHOULD KNOW The beach is fairly small considering the size of the resort, and the sun loungers are packed fairly close together.

LOCATION

Getting Around

A rental car is recommended to explore on your own. Driving is not a problem in the north, as the terrain is fairly flat. To visit the iconic sites in Soufrière, however, a boat tour from Rodney Bay is the most comfortable way to travel. Buses (privately-owned vans) travel up and down the Castries-Gros Islet Highway, which passes right in front of the hotel; the fare to Castries or Rodney Bay is EC$1.50 (about US$ .60) each way—and the ride is always an adventure! Taxis, of course, are always available.

Restaurants

Since the hotel is all-inclusive and guests have a choice of a half-dozen restaurants, dining elsewhere is unlikely.

Bars

Guests generally stick around for the nightly entertainment at the resort’s Sunset Bar & Lounge. Otherwise, Verve (10-minute drive) in Rodney Bay is a dance club that attracts a fairly young crowd. Also at Rodney Bay, Treasure Bay Casino is St. Lucia’s one and only casino.

Gros Islet Jump-Up (15-minute drive), the island's largest street party, is a Friday-night ritual. Huge speakers set up on the street blast Caribbean music all night long. You can also buy barbecued fish and chicken from villagers who set up grills along the roadside—along with beer and soda. Take a taxi to Gros Islet. The streets get so crowded that you’re unlikely to find a parking spot for a rental car. Your taxi driver will arrange a pickup time.

WHY WE LIKE IT

You—and your kids—won’t get bored here. There’s always plenty to do all day and into the night. And it’s all included in your room rate—even the tips.

QUICK FACTS

Family
335 rooms
Breakfast yes
Lunch yes
Dinner yes
Bar yes
Cafe yes
Room Service yes
$$$$
Gym, Pool
yes
Free Parking
No

HOTEL INFO

Phones: 758-457-3700; 866-830–1617 in U.S.

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