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“Interesting visit” 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 #7 of 17 Hotels in Castries
Certificate of Excellence
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Interesting visit”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2013 via mobile

We stayed here as SAGA volunteers for a month so hope that this review will give a balanced overview of the hotel.
This is a SAGA owned hotel so all clients are over 50+ and British which leads to some interesting scenarios. It states that the hotel is not suitable for less mobile guests and this has to be taken into account. There are no lifts and numerous steps especially to access the garden rooms. The hotel itself is isolated on the top of a steep hill and it is not wise to try and walk. It is guarded by security 24/7 which could be unnerving for some. Yes the local dogs do bark but they are there for security not as pets. The hotel minibus runs to various destinations but you need to book in advance as there are only 15 seats and these fill up quickly and finish by 5pm.
The rooms and public areas are spotless, staff welcoming and helpful. Considering how young they are they do a good job of trying to enjoy our company too. Local drinks are available all day as are tea and coffee. As we were working,we only had weekend lunches at the hotel and we amazed to find roast beef on Sunday lunchtime each week. We managed to persuade Alvin the sous chef to make some local foods as a change from British dishes and it was great. However some guests complained the food was spicy- it's the Caribbean! Other complaints also heard the sun was hot- yep and it was rainy- it is the rainy season until the end of November!
The pool itself is small but clean and the garden area provided welcome shade when it wasn't raining. The area surrounding the pool can be slippery when wet so care was needed and some less mobile guests did find it difficult.
We were not impressed at all with the rep Sara, but she has now left and Henry returned briefly to introduce the new rep. Liz who seemed genuinely interested in the guests and this should improve the atmosphere.
This was our home for a month and we were well looked after but would not choose this hotel if we were on holiday as we prefer to visit local bars and restaurants and eat more authentic foods. However this in no way detracts from the overall success of the Bel Jou. It would be unfair to single any one member of staff out,so well done Navin on running a tight ship.

Stayed October 2013, traveled on business
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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193 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 (87)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2013

The hotel is on top of a hill overlooking Castries harbour on one side and the open sea on the other, the road up is very steep and pretty poor houses, not a great hotel to go for walks from.
The hotel buildings are a little tired, but they do what they can to keep up with the maintenance, the gardens are great, I seen more variety of birds here than on any of the excursions.
The rooms are clean and regularly serviced and cleaned.
The food is adequate with few choices, it is buffet style 6 out 7 days, the 7th.day is waiter service and this was very good menu. There is a cabana by the pool, for lunch this is by far the best place to eat, freshly cooked and friendly service.
The best feature of the hotel is the staff, from the Manager to the house maids, everyone is friendly and helpful.

Room Tip: For the best views it would be the 5th floor, all the rooms in the main building had sea views
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
walsall
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2013

We stayed at Bel Jou for two weeks early October 2013. We had a wonderful time.
All of the staff from the manager down were extremely efficient, very polite & friendly,always smiling, particulary Aliede, the egg lady & Sherman. Sarah the Saga rep was particularly attentive.
Our room was on the third floor and provided an amazing view over Castries and the ocean. The room itself was spotless and very comfortable. We stayed on an all inclusive basis as most guests do and in my opinion it is fantastic value. The food was absolutely wonderful for breakfast, lunch & dinner, I note other reviewers complaints about the food, they must have been in a different Bel Jou
to the one we stayed in. This is not a four or five star hotel but it is a very good hotel and excellent value. As to the weather it was very hot and quite humid some days but come on this is the Caribbean and it is the rainy season, what do you expect ! All in all a wonderful holiday and woul'nt hesitate to return.
Graham C
Staffordshire

Room Tip: Choose rooms on 3 or 4 the floors, less steps to negotiate.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England
Level Contributor
24 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2013

Our second visit to St Lucia and the Bel Jou and we weren't disappointed. Our room, like most others, enjoyed a lovely sea view and was very well appointed (but note, no baths). All-inclusive food and drinks were very good indeed with plenty of choice at all meals.
Location is on outskirts of Castries which is accessible by hotel's shuttle bus, as is Rodney Bay (main resort area).
No lifts and so plenty of stairs between floors, but no problem if reasonably mobile.

Room Tip: Higher level rooms have better views. Single rooms have limited outlook.
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  • Stayed September 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.
Stourbridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2013

My partner and I spent a week here with a Saga offer in October 2013. The weather was very warm,29 degrees most days but the humidity was very heavy and put a dampner on staying outside as from morning till night,we spent literally every minute bathed in sweat as did most of the other guests. We spent the majority of our time on our balcony and room which was air conditioned and it had wonderful views over Castries and the sea. The food and drinks were all inclusive and a very good choice of menu made each meal very appetising. The staff were very friendly and helpful and we had a good rep in Sarah and the guides on the outings were very jovial and knowledgeable about everything. I would recommend the visitto the Luchen Country Life,Mamiku Gardens ans the gondola ride over the rainforest. The beauty of the warm air was that we had our evening dinner sat out on the restaurant balcony overlooking the lights and enjoying the warm balmy winds. To have a look round Castries itself,it was best to go by the free shuttle service as the hotel is on a steep hill.

Room Tip: Most rooms had good views over to the sea unless you were on the bottom floor.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

If you are a single traveller, do not go to the Bel Jou, Bungalows, ha! More like a row of second rate dark and dingy rooms stuck behind the swimming pool bar wall with no veiw of anything except, if you crane your neck, you may see the the security office.
The manager and staff were great but the Rep was uncaring and conspicuous by her absence.
The food is much to be desired, perhaps some inhouse training would help as they are trying to cook food that is alien to them.
Not my best holiday

Room Tip: Do not opt for the so called bungalows !
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2013

I've recently returned from another wonderful holiday at Bel Jou. (My previous visit was two years ago.) This time I was able to take advantage of an internet offer for a late deal. Outstanding value for money!
Once again, all the staff were brilliant - so friendly, cheerful and helpful. I agree with everything Gaynor says (below). I was also on the 3rd floor and had wonderful views. The rooms were spotlessly clean and very well equipped with everything you could possibly need. Food in the main restaurant was, if anything, better than on my previous visit, with more choice. The Cabana was a good choice for a lighter lunch.
I also went on the whale and dolphin spotting excursion and the segway experience. Both of them were terrific fun and I definitely recommend them.
The new SAGA rep, Sarah, started at the Bel Jou as we arrived. It may take her a little more time to attune to the needs and expectations of some of the guests, but she has an infectious laugh and was trying hard.
I was disappointed that a few of the guests were complaining loudly about the weather whilst I was there. It is the rainy season after all, so you have to expect rain! Having said that, most guests just accepted the occasional downpours. Yes, one or two guests complained that the hotel was not up to the standard they expected - well, I would definitely recommend Bel Jou to all my friends without hesitation and I'm planning on visiting again - next year if I can manage it!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • 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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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:
#7 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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