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“A great place to stay” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Bel Jou Hotel

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Bel Jou Hotel
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PO Box 296 | La Pansee, Castries 89131, St. Lucia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 17 Hotels in Castries
Yeovil, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“A great place to stay”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2013

My husband and I booked an all inclusive birdwatching and wildlife exploration through SAGA (over 50's) staying at the Bel Jou for two weeks. The hotel sits high on a hill overlooking Castries and has great views. We ate meals on the verandah at breakfast and lunchtime, and in the evening we ate in the restaurant. Six meals a week are buffet style with one night being Gala night, therefore waiter/waitress service. All staff at this hotel are very friendly. The food was good with plenty of choice, roast and fish, pasta dishes etc. As a vegetarian I found some of the meals limited but made up for it by having dessert e.g. gateaus, ice cream or fruit cobbler and custard! A good selection of cheeses was available. At breakfast there's a wide selection of food, cold meat, cheese, bread, cereals, yogurt, sausage, bacon and eggs cooked to order etc. At 4.15pm each afternoon there was an English tea of fabulous scones, hot from the oven, with jam and cream, and sandwiches, enough to keep you going until your evening meal..
Rooms are very spacious with plenty of room for your clothes etc. A nice bathroom with a useful clothes line so you can dry your swimming costume, a very good shower and plenty of hot water. All the rooms overlook the gardens and most have a seaview. The housekeeping staff did and excellent job and the hotel grounds and external areas are kept exceptionally clean. The evening entertainment was good with the opportunity to dance it you want to.
As our party had it's own tour host, Dee, who was exceptional, we had little to do with Henry, and on the occasions when he was asked for advice it wasn't always forthcoming. We therefore thought we were treated differently because we were there as a specific holiday group.
The manageress Camilla and her husband were very friendly.
Many of our group made the same comment as us that it's a shame of the location of the hotel as most of us like to have a walk in the evenings, but once you see the surrounding roads you understand why it's not safe to walk. We used the courtesy bus which takes you into Castries, Rodney Bay or Pigeon Island (great for snorkelling but mind the black sea urchins).
We had a wonderful time and met some great people. SAGA only runs this wildlife trip once a year (May) at present, but if you are able to get a place and you have Dee Doody as your tour host you will have a fantastic holiday. Some of our group were new to wildlife holidays, some were experienced 'birders', others like me just want to see it all! Fabulous!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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160 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (72)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Dover
2 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

Hotel excellent - rooms extremely good - balcony overlooks gardens and sea - staff very friendly - Saga Rep 'Henry Roberts' was one of the best reps I have ever met - cannot walk from hotel as terrain very steep but you can use daily free hotel minibus to get around and it is punctual and good service - restaurant and views from are excellent - swimming pool small but useable, but we went on the hotel minibus to beach which was deserted and lovely to both walk and swim - overall excellent -

Room Tip: Have room on second floor or above for views and size -
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scarborough, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

Only able to stay a week, wish it had been two! We loved almost everything about the Bel Jou. From the management to the cleaners, everyone wwas so friendly, helpful and hard-working to ensure we had a great time. Henry (SAGA rep) was amazing and our best rep ever. The hotel is well laid out with excellent rooms and stunning views over the gardens and Castries from the top floors (we asked SAGA beforehand to let the hotel know we wanted a top floor room which they did, but if you have difficulties with stairs then ask for a lower floor which still gives lovely garden views). Restaurant is spacious and we found the food to be excellent, especially the local fish. The lounge areas are also spacious and comfortable and we made some great friends. The shuttle service was brilliant for trips to Castries, Rodney Bay and Pigeon Island - all excellent, but don't attempt a walk away from the hotel due to lack of a footpath, steep hills and some dodgy driving! The gardens are fantastic with an abundance of tropical flowers and trees, and a variety of fascinating birdlife, especially the stunning little hummingbirds, although the best place to see and photgraph them is at the little feeders beside the pool. Our only disappointment was the small pool which could have been much better-designed given the area available, although others said they found the pool adequate. Overall we had a great time and can highly recommend the Bel Jou.

Room Tip: Top two floors for best views unless you have difficulties with stairs when the lower floors still h...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013

Just had 2 weeks her and what a great time we had .The hotel is great the food is great ,the staff are great and the views are fantastic.We took the 3 trips included which were very interesting and it got you to mingle with the the other guests more .They have a very good bus to take you to the beaches and Castries you just book your trips at reception.They have the best rep we have ever met in Henry ,one of kind.One of the optional trips is on the Segways it was the best thing ever ,worth every penny and more unforgetable .If your not good at climbing stairs floors 3 and 4 still have very good views and nearer the pool bar ...

Room Tip: Still get good views from 3rd and 4th floors.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Essex
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2013

My Husband and I have just returned from the Bel Jou after spending two lovely weeks there. This hotel sits in a perfect position overlooking Castries and what beautiful views. We ate some of our meals on the verandah and looked at these amazing views whilst our glasses were always topped up by the waiters. The waiters and waitresses at this hotel are very friendly and cannot do enough for you, a special mention to Javid, Aleed and also to the chefs Kelvin and Dave. The food was good and plenty of choice, lovely carveries and fish, pasta dishes etc. A good selection of cheeses are available and the gateaus, ice cream and desserts are too nice! Breakfast is very good and you can have your eggs however you want them cooked to order, with lovely omelettes too. The wine, which is a Pinot Grigio was very palatable too. You will not go hungry at this hotel and if you are a little peckish in the afternoons there are always the scrumptious scones with jam and cream, and little sandwiches.
The rooms are very spacious with plenty of room
for your clothes etc. A nice bathroom with a good shower and plenty of hot water. All the rooms overlook the gardens, and garden and seaview from the fourth and fifth floors. Everywhere was very clean and the maids did a good job.
I must give a mention to the rep Henry, who is without a doubt the best rep we have had on a foreign holiday in 30 years. He did over and above what was required of him and he always joined in the dancing in the evenings as well as providing a quiz, crossword and wordsearch every day for all of us to do if we wished.
The evening entertainment was extremely good, with some very good singers and groups etc. they certainly got everyone up dancing!
The Gala nights (and you get two different ones on a 15 night holiday) were very good and food was lovely.
The Manageress Camilla and her husband were around quite a bit to offer advice etc and were very friendly.
All in all a great little place to go, even though there is nowhere to walk to, the courtesy bus takes you to a number of places and some lovely beaches.
Lastly we met some lovely people on this holiday namely, Delia, Chris, Beryl, Cyril, Edna, Arthur, Judy, Tony, Rosie and Peter.

Room Tip: All the rooms have good views, but the higher up you are the views are better.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
leicester
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

My wife and I stayed here from the 23rd April 2013 to 3rd May 2013.The hotel was not overfull and we had a room on the second floor which was large,comfortable,air-con worked,and the room was cleaned to a high standard by Jasmine. There are a few steps but not as many as I was expecting having read previous reviews,anyone with normal mobility will not have a problem.
I thought the food was very good with the usual breakfast dishes,bacon egg,sausage,beans.Plenty of fresh fruit and toast.Lunch was a choice of hot and cold dishes.Dinner had a roast every night,and some tasty soups,fattening sweets and an endless supply of wine served at the table.If anyone says there was not enough choice they must be on a different planet to me.There was music most evenings from solo to groups and we had a great time dancing until 10pm when it wound down as a lot of people had left the restaurant.W e were
lucky in that we met Judy and Tony from Cumbria and Katy and Mike from Rotherham and we
dined together at the same table every evening.
Yes the hotels position is not on the beach but the shuttle runs often enough to Castries and on
to Rodney Bay(lovely beach) and Pigeon point,great views from the top and several little coves
with sandy beaches.Four of us hired Fabians Taxi for a day trip around the island,Pitons
waterfall,gardens etc.Fabian was very knowledgable and cheaper than the hotel tours.You can
contact him at www.fabiantoursstlucia.com.You wont be disappointed.I cannot finish without a
mention of the Saga rep HENRY. He is an absolute treasure and his wit and charm were first
class.He was always there if there was a problem and joined in the dancing most evenings.I
understand he is leaving in July to go back to Cyprus............he will be sorely missed!! To sum
up it was a great holiday and I am sure you will enjoy yourself.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shrewsbury, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

This report is the honest views of my wife and I without any hidden agenda.
First impressions of the Bel Jou were of a well maintained hotel with security a main consideration. A high wire mess fence surrounded the property with the boundary being regularly patrolled by security staff 24/7.
The rooms were of a good size with the en-suite also good with a modern corner shower. The room has as standard, iron/ironing board, hairdryer, fridge, tea/coffee making facilities, safe and TV with DVD player. In the accommodation wing, all rooms from 1st floor and above have excellent views over Castries and the surrounding area.
Contrary to some previous reports, we found the food very good. Bearing in mind the age of the clients staying at the hotel, we thought the Chef did a good job in the selection of food to accommodate most tastes. Most days there was a local fish dish, creole or jerk chicken dish. The favourites, roast beef, lamb and pork were well received by the guests. All food was of good quality, well prepared and presented. The staff were very friendly, helpful and extremely polite. Nothing was too much trouble to ensure you enjoyed your stay.
Unfortunately, the hotel is situated in the middle of a residential area of Castries, on the side of a hill and the majority of surrounding properties have guard dogs, hence the previous reports of barking dogs. Certain areas of the hotel are in need of a facelift but overall well maintained. Limited room for sunbathing around the pool, although this would only be a problem if the hotel was full. Garden is not as big as the photograph looks in the brochure, although quite well maintained. Hotel would have a problem if it was near full occupancy (116 guests) as there are only in the region of 60 sun beds spread between the pool and garden.
Quite a number of guests remarked on the lack of a lounge area for socialising. There is currently no where to have a pre/after dinner drink and meet other guests ( the pool bar closes at 6pm). However, there is a roof terrace not being used that would make an ideal lounge with stunning views, if a roof and windows were added.
Shuttle bus very popular and needs to be booked at least 24hours in advance. Worth visiting Rodney Bay and Pigeon Island. Suggest you avoid a day when there is no more than one cruise ship in port. Both venues get very busy when there are a number of cruise ships calling at St Lucia on the same day.
Overall, a well maintained hotel with excellent staff and a good Saga representative in Henry.
Perhaps, not a hotel for the younger minded or younger aged clientele of Saga

Room Tip: If you have difficulty with stairs, ask for room on 3rd floor which is level with access to pool an...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bel Jou Hotel

Address: PO Box 296 | La Pansee, Castries 89131, St. Lucia
Location: Caribbean > St. Lucia > Castries Quarter > Castries
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#8 Romantic Hotel in Castries
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 52
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Saga guests can now enjoy a holiday at Saga’s own hotel on the Caribbean island of St Lucia. Boasting stunning views over Castries from its setting atop a steep hill, the 4-star Bel Jou provides a tranquil, tropical retreat for today’s over 50s, free from the distractions of the more overrun resorts. With many opportunities for sightseeing and sampling island life, the hotel’s relaxed atmosphere is perfect for a leisurely holiday or a lively Caribbean experience. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Bel Jou Castries
Bel Jou Hotel St. Lucia/Castries

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