This resort was the literature says the first couples only resort in the world when it opened in 1966. It is marketed as a Boutique Couples Hotel. It has about 100 rooms and suites but is a very private place with beautiful gardens and an artificial river running through them with lots of nooks and crannies where you are able to find peace and quietness. As we arrived, the birds were singing in the trees and the frogs had just started to croak in their little private jungles it was absolutely stunning.
On arrival we were welcomed with a soft drink and towel after our hour long journey up from the “international” airport at the southern tip of the island to the popular North East Caribbean side of the island. A very good start prior to be taken to and introduced to our rooms.
Because we like the beach and the sea, we stayed in the Beachfront rooms from which you can walk straight onto the beach. We took advice from other reviewers and asked for a first floor room and the rooms are entered along an elevated board walk. Outside each room is a pot containing water with which you can wash the sand off your feet before entering the room. A nice touch with the water changed each day. The rooms themselves are very colonial in nature with plenty of dark mahogany wood and a four poster king sized and very comfortable bed. Each room has a smallish circular balcony (on the ground floor it is a less private terrace). In each room there is a fridge with nothing in it unless you request fresh milk. There are no televisions in the hotel rooms but for us that wasn’t a problem. WiFi in these rooms is provided but we found it to be at the best very slow or at the worst non-existent in the room, better reception was obtained either on the beach or in the hotel terrace. The en suites are very good size with shower and all very clean and well maintained. Air conditioning is provided, however the temperature gauge didn’t seem to make any difference and the air conditioning was very fierce, cold and somewhat noisy for sleeping so we switched it off at night and relied on the very silent electric fan instead though whether that would suffice in the heat of the summer is debatable. Switching the A/C off created a small problem because as the air conditioning unit is in the top of the wardrobe and not external to the room, switching it off left a puddle of water on the top shelf of the wardrobe. As we didn’t want to leave the A/C on at night the only way of resolving this was to place a towel under the unit to collect the drips.
With the exception of this one negative point, our room (243) was lovely with a splendid view through the palm trees to the beach and the blue Caribbean beyond. Yes, you did hear the sea at night but we didn’t find this a problem we actually found it restful.
As an all-inclusive resort, food and alcohol was available in copious quantities if desired. Table water was always served without asking at every meal with glasses being topped up as necessary …..excellent. There were at least 5 choices of wine at every meal. Sure the wine wasn’t the highest quality but eminently drinkable and with the water no headache the next day! Buffet style meals are the norm in the main restaurant throughout the day. Although not great buffet fans, the choice was excellent with importantly fresh fish and meat cooked at lunch and dinner as well. Buffet food was kept at the correct temperature on electric hobs. There was plenty of salad and healthy foods available to offset the naughty desserts. We also enjoyed the Beach Barbecue as well, with the limbo dancers. There is an a la carte restaurant called the Trysting Place in which we dined for three consecutive evenings. It is worthwhile booking a reservation at Reception virtually on arrival because tables are rapidly reserved particularly on Friday and Saturday evenings. This restaurant was badged as fine dining and the food was generally of excellent quality and presentation. For wine, the same house wines as in the main restaurant were freely available or alternatively there was a wine list from which you can buy better quality wines from around the world. Prices ranged from about $US28 upwards.
There are three bars in the hotel all serving premium drinks as part of the all-inclusive deal eg. Gordon’s Gin, Courvoisier Cognac, a range of well-known blended whiskies etc. For a bit of quiet seclusion away from the at times somewhat noisy evening entertainment the Champagne Bar offered peaceful air conditioned surroundings with quiet classical music playing in the background.
Malabar Beach on which the hotel stands is a long stretch of idyllic sand. To the right of the hotel we found the sea quieter and no underwater rocks ……perfect for swimming. Plenty of loungers are provided together with beach towels and the beach service from the hotel is frequent and excellent. All beaches are public beaches and so on Sundays in particular; the beach becomes more of a town beach for Castries but even then not crowded in any way. Unlike other resorts that we have been to in the Caribbean, there were very few pedlars, in fact just one, a very polite and intelligent Rastafarian from whom my wife bought a lovely shell bracelet at a ridiculously cheap price and with whom I learnt more about the island, its politics, its good things and its not so good things than from any guide, including how to tell whether a rain shower was on its way! We didn’t try the swimming pools as the sea was reasonably calm during our stay and warm. The hotel is highly security conscious with guards watching everything that is happening on the beach like a hawk so you feel very safe.
As for the closeness to the local airfield as mentioned by other reviewers, some planes fly directly overhead having just taken off but we didn’t find this a problem, more an interest once we had got used to it. At the most, about twelve planes a day leave the airfield overhead starting at about 7am in the morning and finishing about the same time at night. These are all island hopping turboprop planes, which are not particularly big or noisy and not in any way intrusive so not a worry.
In terms of trips we would recommend the Land and Sea trip, an all day trip which has a bit of everything in it including a jeep trip to the “volcano”, botanical gardens, the rain forest and snorkelling on the way back off a catamaran.
The only real disappointment we had was following check out. The hotel provides a hospitality suite in which it was said one can shower and change ready for the journey home. This suite is part of the gym area and is where people using the gym shower and get changed as well. There is no private changing area and so both my wife and I ended up changing in the toilet rather than joining people in various states of undress! There is a communal rest room which is not just for leavers and as it has one of the few public televisions in the hotel was being used by people other than leavers. In other hotels if we haven’t paid for additional time in our room, the hotel has provided private courtesy rooms in which you can book a slot prior to leaving. We think this would be a much better arrangement at Rendezvous and there must be spare rooms available for this purpose. Otherwise, where possible I would suggest that guests try to buy some extra time in their rooms which we would try and do if we return. We felt that once we had checked out that was it there was a loss of interest.
In summary we felt that this hotel generally ticked all the boxes. The staff was very well trained, polite and excellent in everything they did which demonstrates effective management. I know some people found the reception staff slightly more aloof, I have to say that was not our finding. One thing we did find odd was that the staff did not have name badges. We were told that management felt that this would remove some of the informality of the hotel. However we like to address staff by their first names and also identify staff who have given particularly good service. To keep asking them what they were called was tiresome so we just didn’t do it. I think the hotel should review this policy.
Would we return? Most certainly yes, at some time in the future. We have however promised to pay for our daughter and son in law to go out there for a wedding anniversary in two years’ time which I hope indicates how positive we felt about the experience.
- Also Known As:
- Rendezvous Hotel
- Rendezvous St Lucia
- Rendezvous Hotel Castries
- Rendezvous Resort All Inclusive
- Rendezvous Hotel St Lucia
- Rendevous St Lucia
- Rendezvous Resort St Lucia
- Rendezvous Resort St. Lucia/Castries
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Rendezvous - The Boutique Hotel For Couples. Rendezvous is the only all-inclusive boutique resort in the Caribbean nestled in a tropical garden on a 2-mile stretch of beach, designed for couples who want to spend quality time together in an atmosphere of personalized care. ... more less
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