We stayed 4 nights at Villa Beach Cottages. Our primary criteria were that we wanted something close to the water (where we could hear the waves, unlike larger resorts where many of the rooms are further away from the water) and something where we had some degree of privacy. Those requirements, plus the very high marks that VBC got in the TA rankings prompted us to choose VBC for our stay.
VBC met most of the basic requirements of our stay, and some of the unmet needs were more our lack of good planning than VBC’s fault, but we also didn’t feel that the resort measured up to the high marks given by most TA raters.
While cleanliness in general was good, the floors were dirty. Walking around barefoot inside led to dirty, black feet almost instantly. They could have done a better job washing the floors.
They say that they have two grills for visitor use, and we bought some fresh tuna one night to grill. One grill wasn’t working. The other was sitting outside someone’s unit, waiting to be used, but not in use. When I inquired of the office about using it, they said it had been reserved, but they would call the person. The response I got back was that the person didn’t know when they were going to be using the grill, but that they would contact the office when they were finished. This was at 6:30pm. I didn’t make a fuss, but I felt that a better response from the office would have been to gently explain to them that since there was only a single working grill, could they be more specific about their use needs, or could we use it for ½ hour then return it to them? In short, I felt like a resort that prides itself on customer service took their eye off the ball on this. In addition, it made my wife and I wonder why, since there’s a maintenance man hanging around all day doing nothing, there was a non-working grill.
The beach itself is relatively unappealing. It’s very narrow. In addition, right next to the VBC property, between VBC and the Sandals/Halcyon a few hundred yards to the south, is a sort of no-trespassing/public-access area that gets used by many locals, a few of whom look, well, questionable. My wife didn’t feel comfortable walking by herself down this stretch of beach.
As others have said, the road outside VBC is VERY busy. It’s not a walking road. As a result, between the beach issue and the road issue, one can tend to feel “trapped” at the resort. This would have probably been less pronounced had we chosen to rent a car rather than rely on taxis; however, since we did the latter, we did often feel a bit trapped here.
I don’t want to leave readers with an idea that our opinion of VBC was entirely negative; it wasn’t. The staff is helpful and friendly. they were quick to coordinate activities, dinner reservations, taxis, etc – they try hard to serve and please.
But the negatives were surprising to us, given the extremely high marks VBC has gotten in the reviews. I’m always a bit uncomfortable writing negative reviews but in this case, I was a bit surprised by some of these negatives, and felt like it would be helpful to future travelers to know about some of them.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- An intimate, boutique, beachfront hotel featuring deluxe fully self-contained one and two bedrooms villa suites nestled among the coconut trees and lush tropical gardens at Choc Bay with panoramic views of the Caribbean Sea and offering comfortable, casual luxury with friendly, impeccable service. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Villa Beach Cottages Hotel Castries
- Hotel Beach
- Villa Beach Cottages St. Lucia/Castries