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“No pressure No problem” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Resort and Spa

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Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Resort and Spa
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   La Toc, Castries, St. Lucia   |  
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Ranked #5 of 17 Hotels in Castries
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Dallas, Texas
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
147 helpful votes 147 helpful votes
“No pressure No problem”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2006

We had a wonderful vacation at Sandals Regency from Feb 9th through the 16th. We're returning guests and were given a complimentary upgrade as such to Honeymoon Grande Luxe Beachfront in the newly remodeled area of the resort in rm 152. This was the perfect location for us as we spent almost all of our time around the main pool.

The room had a big flat panel tv, tile floors, a small sitting area, mini-fridge stocked with cokes and water, a jacuzzi tub and a nice vanity in the bathroom. We also had an electronic wall safe (though it was tiny!) in the closet. Enough room for a wallet and our passports and a few other small items but not big enough for a laptop (We didn't take one but a lot of folks want to know if the laptop would fit in the safe).

The restaurants at Regency were good -- probably better than most of the other Sandals we've visited. Its not 5 star dining but its better than Applebee's or O Charley's or other chains in the states. And for goodness sakes, if you get something and don't like it, order something else. The drinks are as weak or as strong as you'd like them. Just like at home, unless you call your alcohol in your drinks at the bar, you are going to get the house brand. House is not premium or top shelf but plenty of premium alcohol is available for the asking.

The staff at Regency from the housekeeping to playmakers to bartenders to servers at the restaurants are all excellent and very hardworking folks. My hat is off to all of them.

There is construction going on at the hotel but it is not invasive to enjoying your vacation. We were pretty close to some construction of restrooms by the main pool and it was not a big deal. They didn't start too early and definitely didn't go past 4pm or so.

We visited the other Sandals on St Lucia and were equally impressed with them. Halcyon is smaller but the Pier restaurant was awesome. The Grande is quite large and very new. We had a great dinner at Barefoot by the Sea at the Grande. Either of these would make a great vacation spot as well. We chose Regency due to excellent pricing at 50% off last fall and on return trips to St Lucia, we'll let pricing be our guide for which resort we choose.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2006

For all of those nervous brides out there planning to get married at the Regency this review is for you. I got married at the Regency on February 17, 2006. We had a wonderful experience. Everything was perfect. A morning dove walked me down the isle while two yellow butterflies fluttered in front of me....I couldn't believe it. We even captured it on the video, it was just beautiful. We had a Caribbean steel drum band play Caribbean music during the ceremony. The music and the band just made the day all the more festive. The night of our wedding we all shared a candlelight dinner in a gazebo. The meal was outstanding. I got to customize the menu which made it extra special. It was truly the best dinner I have ever had. The wedding planner was execellent and took care of every detail. The day was truly enjoyable and stress free. At the end of our trip we took a helicopter ride to the airport. The scenery was just breathtaking. I highly recommend this. I wouldn't change a thing!!

  • Stayed February 2006
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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London, United Kingdom
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2006

My husband and I along with another couple from the states & my sister and bro in law from the UK stayed at the Regency Feb 11-19. Actually lucky sis is still there, I wish I was too!

Transfers at the airport:
A little confusing because we didn't know what to expect, but actually well organized and easy. Only bad bit is that it takes 1h15min to get to the resort, and the roads are windy and bumpy. Would probably take the helicopter to avoid the ride if $140 each was in my budget.

When you come out of the door from customs you will be greeted by the airport porters. The will say "Sandals?" and offer to take your bags. You don't need them to unless you have a massive amount of stuff as the Sandals transport desk is about 20' away from the doors.

A guy will check you off the list, load your stuff in the van, and away you go. Depending on how many people they have coming in on the flight you will be in a taxi (sis was only couple on the full Virgin 747 going to the Regency and they got a private car!) We were in a mini bus with 2 other couples.

When we arrived at the resort we id'd our bags, and were directed up to the ball room for a group check in. We were offered refreshments - the process took about 15 minutes but we wish it had taken 5, hahaha. Sis was checked in in the lounge, took about same time but was more personal. All in all it is very organized - they give you a little bag with shampoo, after sun lotion, etc. and info on tours. You can leave an imprint of your credit card to establish resort credit (for gift shop, tours, wine from the list, etc)

We had booked the second lowest room - we were upgraded to the Grand Luxe OV, which is on the 4th floor of the main building, not renovated but clean, fresh, and nicer than expected after reading some of the reviews here. We had a little sitting area and a balcony/patio with sun loungers on it. The others were on the 6th and 7th floor, rooms were the same but a bit smaller (no sitting area) benefit of an upper room is that you can open the window and no one-no birds can see-come in, and the views are perfect.

The main building was really convenient for us. The birds weren't bad, there are trees and stuff, and they are just little animals.

Pool was great, La Toc was fine. Armando's was our favorite - the food is good enough and the atmosphere is awesome which compensates for the food They have an anti pasti bar that is hard to beat. The Pavilion served a varied buffet for lunch and breakfast - I have no idea what anyone is complaining about. The food was fresh and there were plenty of choices.

There is a snack bar where you can get burgers, pizza, etc. and take to your room or eat at the pool if you are hungry between meals. Kimono’s was a lot of fun, just like Bennihana's. We took insulated drink cups with straws (size of a coffee cup) and they didn’t bat an eye at asking to fill them with ice water or something stronger once we were back from diving.

I'm a wine drinker, and the house wine didn't sit well with my pallet, but you can get a decent bottle for about $30-$40 and they don't care if you cork it and take it with you, or bring a bottle to the restaurant (you could probably bring your own if you had a special wine you like, I just didn't have any extra room in my baggage!)

Activities were varied, we dove every day. We wanted to find a way around the check out dive, but we couldn't. It wasn't that big of a deal. We did the check out in the pool the first morning, and did the afternoon single tank at 1:20pm.

The dives are:
8:20am two single tank, back by about 1pm, snacks on the boat
1:20pm single tank shallow, back by about 4pm
Night dive needs 4 people and is $70. Two dives a day are included, the third is $30 (we only did 3 dives 2 days, and 4 dives 1 day - as I said, we are scuba nuts!)
Once you have done your check out dive you can sign up for as much diving as you want- just put your name on the list at the watersports hut. Snorklers also sign up here, it is very painless.

The boats are great, 48', new, safety is a priority and the staff is very, very nice considering that tipping on top of what you have paid isn't expected.
Check out was easy - and sad! We had a 3:52pm flight and our shuttle was at noon. Again, consider the helicopter.

Oh, we did the scuba/snorkel trip to Martinique, the seas were so rough it ruined the fun and we were exhausted when we got back. A bit like La Toc, glad I tried it but won't do it again :-)

I'll be happy to answer any questions, and stop worrying about the little stuff and enjoy your trip. It will be fantastic as long as you don't ruin it by being uptight.

One other thing. We are used to going to Mexico or the Bahamas, and it took us a while to realize when someone said "don't worry, I'll take care of it" they meant it. You don't have to chase and chase like other places. It was really nice.

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A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2006

My husband and I stayed with two other couples for a week at the Regency resort. We were all a little skeptical about the resort as some of the reviews we read were not very good. I must say we had the greatest time and the resort is fabulous. The staff was outstanding. Especially the intern Michelle who we had the priveledge of having dinner with during our trip. Our offer will always be open for her to visit us. The food was wonderful. Always plenty to eat. The drinks were great. Someone was always willing to help you. They did have a red flag at the beach on some days however, it didn't mean that you couldn't use the beach if you chose to. It was one of the best views from our room we've ever had. Our balcony was private and we enjoyed the layout of the resort. Hi Lori. To those people who did not have a good time at this resort, they probably wouldn't have a good time anywhere. Thank you Sandals Regency for a Fabulous Vacation.

Stayed February 2006
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Conshohocken, PA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2006

The first room had COCKROACHES & MOLD! MY HUSBAND COULD BARELY BREATHE in the room. So they moved us to a room that did not have cockroaches, it still had the mold. Horrible food. Drinks were in the smallest cups, lines at every bar. No beach bar. Night entertainment was awful. The pool was gross. We took an excursion which was terrible. At the luncheon that was included with the excursion I almost drank a very small fish that was LIVING IN THE WATER I WAS DRINKING!

Worst vacation ever.

It was so bad, it was like out of a movie.

I would not go back if you paid me.

We now laugh about it.

  • Stayed November 2003
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2006

I was terrified at what I might find at this resort from reading all the reviews on trip advisor. To those of you that ripped this resort apart, shame on you.
The St. Lucia Sandals is quite similar in service to all the Sandals properties. The food was below average (remember this is an all inclusive), The drinks were always available, the entertainment was fun and the staff was hysterical. They went the extra mile to make the stay enjoyable.

The rooms were awesome in the main building. All had just been remodeled. Flat Panel TVs, marble bathrooms, the works. This was the Premium level room category, which was second to last. The rennovations in this building are done. There was another building that was being remodeled and was about 98% done. We never were bothered by the construction as it was away from the pools and other rooms.

The entire resort is being remodeled in stages, so do expect some construction around the property.

The pools needed to be cleaned more often, but they did try to keep up with all the leaves that blew in each night.

The beach was beautiful and warm. We swam in it everyday.

This really is a nice place to relax and enjoy each other.

We did one excursion off property which was Sea and Sea tour. Very good! Worth the money.

Last word of advice.. ignore all these reviews and go and enjoy yourself. No Pressure, No Problem!

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St. Louis, MO
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
151 helpful votes 151 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2006

Where: Sandals Regency, St. Lucia

When: 2 Feb 06 – 9 Feb 06

Who:If you’re reading this review, you’ve undoubtedly read many others. In ‘doing our homework’, we were surprised at the great range of opinions from the same resort. I think it depends a lot on perspective and expectations, so it might be good to establish my ‘baseline’. I spend probably 30% of my time on the road for business. I typically stay at Hiltons and Marriotts, with the occasional Sofitel or Star Hotels thrown in for good measure. The comparisons I make will most likely be to American establishments, since that’s what I know best. Having eaten Italian, Japanese, French, and American foods in their own countries, I do know the difference between good food and great food, and why each is what they are. I’ve also lived in a tent in the desert for a year, and have eaten things that could have been on ‘fear factor’. So….that’s who I am, and why I hope the opinions I’m offering are as objective as they can be.

What: We booked, and received a luxury ocean view room with a private balcony. We paid approximately $3000 for the entire week for two people. I say this, because it’s what my level of happiness / satisfaction is based on. The more I’d have spent, obviously, the less satisfied I would have been with what we’d gotten. Based on the negative reviews, my expectations were fairly low. What I think most people don’t take into account, is: THIS IS THE CARRIBBEAN!!!!! With the exception of the Disney-fied islands which have lost all of their local culture and flavor, you will NOT find a London / New York / Paris 5-star operation here, regardless of what you pay. I was not expecting 5-star, and didn’t get it. I was not expecting Michelin-rated food, and didn’t get it. I was not expecting flawless efficiency, planning, and organization, and didn’t get it. It’s the Caribbean, mon, no pressure. If you’re expecting these things, you’ll need to look elsewhere.

ARRIVAL. We arrived at the Castries (closest) airport at 8:30pm. This airport is only able to accept smaller turbo-prop aircraft. Our American Eagle flight was from San Juan, PR. Regardless of what you might be told elsewhere, if you don’t have your passport, you’ll have to go thru a much larger red-tape hassle than the rest. I expected the aggressive baggage guy who transported our bags outside and 30ft to the curb for ‘donations’, and there he was. It was worth the $3. If it’s not worth it to you, just be ready to stand your ground and move your bags yourself. Once outside, the real Sandals driver somehow knew who we were, and had our names on his list. He loaded our bags into the Sandals minivan, and got us promptly to the Regency in about 15 min with no incidents.

CHECK-IN. By arriving later, we were lucky enough to avoid the ‘mass check-in’, so I can’t offer any thoughts on that. We were given paperwork to fill out, offered some orange juice / champagne, and asked to postpone our ‘introduction briefing’ so that we could eat dinner (as the restaurants were closing at 9:30). We were given our room key, and were driven (with our bags) to our room. The following morning, we went thru a very brief overview, and given a second key. We signed for a safe lock / key, which we didn’t get. I thought we were signing for the second key, and never messed with the safe, so it wasn’t an issue. If you’d like to store your diamonds in your room, however, make sure you get the lock. They recommended that we attend the mass briefing in the auditorium the next morning, but we didn’t….and were just fine.

THE ROOM. Refer to my ‘Caribbean’ opinions above. We were both very satisfied with the room. These were not the updated, refurbished rooms, but that was okay. The front door stuck when opening and closing, the sliding glass door didn’t slide, and the bathroom door was louvered so as to dispel any illusion of privacy you might have. The iron had an American plug, while all the sockets were the British 3-flat-pronged variety…which didn’t matter, because even when I used my handy-dandy adapter, the iron only rattled and got slightly-uncomfortable-to-the-touch. It did, however, serve to beat some of the wrinkles into submission. We left the ironing board up to give us someplace other than the Barbie-sized dresser to put our stuff. The water pressure in the sink was non-existent, to the point that it took a minute and a half to fill up a small water bottle. The shower, for some reason, was okay. Again, let me pause and say that we were both very satisfied with the room. It was clean, cheerfully-bright green, and had a great view from a VERY private balcony. We didn’t spend 12 hours traveling to St. Lucia to be room-bodies. It was simply a place to sleep, change, and relax from time to time. The bed was comfortable, the TV and coffee pot worked, and running constantly at maximum, the air conditioner kept the room cool (not cold, but cooler and less humid than outside) in the heat of the day. There was NO trace of mold or mildew, or the smell that goes along with it.

SERVICE:
Room – Our Housekeeping lady came every day between 1pm and 2pm, and did a great job. We always got fresh towels, a well made bed, a clean floor (no small feat near the beach, mind you) and she would sweep the leaves that had collected on the balcony. On one occasion, we were occupied, and asked her to come back later. Later ended up being the next day, so don’t expect anything to happen in a timely manner. Sometimes it took an hour to clean the room, sometimes it was several.
Food – More on Restaurants and food later, but the service while dining was good. The service itself, when you got it, was great. The frequency, however, was not. Every time someone came to our table during meals, it always seemed to be someone different than the last time. We ended up just getting anyone’s attention we could whenever we needed something. Everyone was always very courteous and attentive. Some were very outgoing and friendly, some were more matter-of-fact. Other than the service lulls, however, we never got bad service. My recommendation: Order all your drinks at once, as soon as you have the opportunity. I don’t think it jives with their ‘system’, but it’s what works the best.
Front desk / admin – Everyone that we would consider management or administration was very friendly and professional. Having said that, though, I should admit that with one small exception, we never had an issue that needed addressing. Our interaction with them centered around things like restaurant reservations, etc. I have a feeling that if we DID have a problem, we could easily have gotten our names put on a list, and thrown into the “no pressure no problem” bureaucracy.
Maintenance – The non-sliding glass door was the one small exception. After breakfast on the first day, I reported it to the front desk, and was put on a list. When I got back to the room, I took two minutes to fix it myself. As far as I know, no one ever showed up to look at it. In fairness, they could have come when we weren’t there and seen that it was okay. I just don’t know. Jumping back to the mold and mildew issue, there were several mornings we left our room, to find the grounds people scrubbing the sidewalks with bleach water. We did not see or smell anything moldy in the week we were there. In addition to the room renovations, there is CONSTANT activity to maintain and upkeep the grounds and facilities. Planting, pruning, roofing, painting, scrubbing, watering, etc etc, all day long. The regency does an admirable job of maintaining an enormous facility in what must be one of the least maintenance-friendly environments there is.

LAYOUT: The Regency is a huge, sprawling, hilly complex…..and it’s great. The ‘atmosphere’ is one of a small village, rather than a resort. If you’re looking to have everything ‘conveniently’ centrally located, or if you don’t like walking from point A to point B, this is NOT the place for you. If you enjoy the privacy and serenity of not being surrounded by people and ‘resort stuff’ all the time, it might be. There is an almost constant shuttle service that runs from the main complex, to the top of the hill. It was also unusual when we were walking, that we weren’t asked if we would like a ride. Both the Grande and the Halcyon were much smaller, and much more centrally collected. Both had more of a ‘hotel’ feel than the Regency. The grounds of the Regency were always very nicely manicured and maintained. The construction and renovation seems to have started in the main buildings, and is working its way up the hill. We were across the street from the Pitons Restaurant, and our building had not been updated.

FOOD: Overall, most of the food was just fine. If you expect something along the lines of an Old Country Buffet / Shoney’s / Friendly’s / Ponderosa / Golden Corral / corporate cafeteria, then you probably won’t be disappointed…and maybe pleasantly surprised sometimes. The presentation, of course, was much better than any of the aforementioned establishments, and the portions were reasonable. The desserts were uniformly tasteless, and all had a funny texture. It may stem from being frozen and unfrozen, but that’s just a guess. We had two dishes that I would consider bad, and none that I would consider great. As pretty much everyone agrees, you need to make your reservations as soon as you can. We were able to get one each at Kimonos and La Toc, but everything else was full.

Breakfast – Very standard breakfast buffet fare. Decent variety, including fruits, cold cuts, breads, hot dishes, cereals, juices, and an eggs-to-order grill with surprisingly fresh eggs and decent omelets. Just a side note: the ingredients for your omelet are mixed in the same little bowl that was used for the person before you, and the person before them…so don’t freak out if you happen to get a little piece of something you didn’t order. Life’s an adventure sometimes. You’ll have to ask for condiments such as ketchup and hot sauce, or grab them from an empty table. Breakfast is served at the Pavilion and Armandos.

Lunch – Kimonos and La Toc are closed for lunch.

Dinner – The selections from all restaurants are fairly limited, and didn’t change during the week we were there. The menu choices for each restaurant were generally 3 or 4 appetizers / soups, a salad or two, maybe 5 entrees, and 3 desserts. Assuming an average stay of 7 – 10 days, as long as you don’t limit yourself to just one restaurant, it works out to be okay. We never ended up having the same meal twice, though preparation of the same entrée (beef, fish, chicken, etc) ends up being pretty darned similar between restaurants.

Pavilion – This is the main eatery at the regency. It’s open to the elements, and overlooks the main pool and ocean. Yes, there are plenty of birds flying around. They rarely land on an occupied table, however, and I never saw them getting anything from the serving line. 90% of everything on the line is covered in some fashion. Previous reviewers were absolutely aghast at the proximity of birds to their food. If you share similar views, this is NOT the place for you. We enjoyed the entertainment the little guys provided. Except for dinner, this is buffet / serving line food, and the quality is pretty standard. The dinner food is quite good, and the atmosphere is nice. Again, the drinks (with alcohol and without) are small, and the opportunities to get them are few and far between, unless you get up and go to the bar yourself. Stock up whenever you can. This is also where the main entertainment and events take place in the evenings, so towards later in the evening, you may find yourself in the middle of setting-up-and-preparations activity.

La Toc – The atmosphere is very nice. Some of the food was very good, but the desserts were sub-par. The house (free) wine was okay, though you’re given the opportunity to purchase something better. Interestingly, it’s easier to get reservations at La Toc than Kimonos. The service seemed to be much more attentive and available here than most.

Kimonos – Japanese Steak house, where the food is prepared for 4 or 5 couples around a community grill table. Except for our Sushi / appetizer choice, the menu was disregarded, and we all got a little bit of everything. It was good for Japanese in the Caribbean, but again…not great. The atmosphere was fun and relaxed enough that I, as asocial as I am, enjoyed the interaction with the other couples. The chef’s presentation was very entertaining. When taken as a whole package, Kimonos was a very good experience.

Armando’s – This was the biggest disappointment of all the restaurants we tried. The décor and location were great, but I’ve had MUCH better Italian food at the Olive Garden and even Fazoli’s than Armando’s. The dishes without pasta (Beef Caponella) were much better than with. The pasta however, was just horrible.

Arizona – Standard grill menu. During the off-times, the Arizona offers convenience-store-quality chips and salsa, pigs-in-blankets, and pizza to snack on. The bar at the Arizona seemed to be open more often than most, and Robert was both professional, and a riot.

Pier – Located at the Halcyon. While most literature says that the Pier requires reservations, it currently doesn’t. You’ll need to get there when they open, however, cuz there’s always a line. The food was surprisingly good, and the atmosphere was surprisingly nice. Worth the trip from the Regency.

DRINKS: Yep, the drinks were watered down, and it was tough to get ‘premium’ brands unless you asked for them. When they did come, they were in slightly-larger-than-shot-glass sized kiddie cups. I ended up having to forego the foo-foo drinks, and order a triple (enter your brand liquor of choice here) on the rocks to get any sort of effect. The thing is, I was on vacation, and I had all week to come back as many times as I needed to. As for my lovely companion, she enjoyed the opportunity to try different kinds of drinks without too much impact. I don’t know a thing about mixed drinks, but the bartenders seemed to have a decent grasp of what to make when people wanted a slippery chicken, funky rabbit, or whatever they were.

OTHER GUESTS: During the week, we never saw anyone getting rowdy, loud, sick, stupid, or causing trouble. Just an observation, not a judgment call: Don’t expect your fellow guests to be the 40-something, executive-types that you see in the Sandals ads. They were in very short supply.

TIPPING: It is truly not necessary to tip at the Regency. I did discreetly give a few small gratuities, but only for service that I feel went above and beyond the norm. Only once was I told “thanks, but no thanks”, and that was done very professionally. I never felt that my service would have been better if they had been expecting a tip.

POOLS: The pools were uniformly chilly (cooler than the ocean, actually), and extremely clean and well kept. I think there was only once during the week that we had trouble finding an open chair. One problem was created by the guests, in leaving their towels on the chairs when they went elsewhere….causing doubt as to whether they were occupied or not. Assuming there were no other belongings in the vicinity, however, I felt it was fair to let 5 minutes or so pass before laying claim. We never had an issue. I was consistently surprised at how few people were actually in the water. The Main pool area was the most used, the upper pool area was second, and the middle (smallest) pool area was mostly unoccupied.

BEACH:

Condition – The beach at the Regency was kept extremely clean. The sand was the same color it is pretty much everywhere else in the world….sand colored. If you want white or pink sand, go somewhere else. As with the pools, I was amazed at how few people used the beach, or actually got into the water.
Size – While the beach appeared to be fairly narrow, it was never an issue because of the lack of people. Even at high tide, there was always approximately 20 feet of dry sand to use. The length of the beach takes probably 10 minutes to walk back and forth at a leisurely pace. It was small, but more than enough.
Water Hazard – The red flag (no swimming) goes up about 4:30pm every day, and comes down around 9:00am. During the week, all days were green (open) except for 2, which were yellow (caution).

ACTIVITIES: There seemed to be plenty of activities to take advantage of, which we didn’t. When asked if we wanted to participate, a simple ‘no thanks’ was always enough.

WATER SPORTS: There are several snorkeling and diving trips per day. The ‘certified diver checkout’ is a quick-but-effective process. You assemble your tank, BC, and regulator beside a small pool. If you miss a step or do something wrong, the divemaster will talk you thru it. He then throws the whole rig into the 5ft-deep pool. You have to go under without your mask, suit up, put your mask back on, and surface. If you’ve missed something, or take too long, he’ll make you repeat until you do it right. They do require your C-card, and you need to know which agencies you’re certified with. Leave your knife at home, cuz they’ll make you take it off. You then come back to take part in the afternoon dive, under the supervision of the divemaster. For all dives and snorkeling, you’re taken by bus to the collective Sandals Marina, maybe 20 minutes away. Divers and snorklers go on separate boats, though they sometimes end up at the same location. The diving is better than most of Florida, similar to Puerto Rico, and pretty good, in my opinion. There were more experienced and traveled divers who weren’t as satisfied with the colors / fish / vis / etc., but isn’t that always the case? When I asked if they’d rather be back at the office, no one said ‘yes’. Speaking of dive snobs….while I brought my own stuff, the Sandals loaner equipment all looked very serviceable. Aged and faded, yes, but doesn’t that mean it’s spent plenty of time outside the shop actually doing its job? In several dives where most people used the Sandals stuff, I never heard or saw anyone have trouble with anything. If you need the latest, prettiest, most expensive equipment to dive with, OR if you’re just more comfortable and competent using what you’re used to, bring your own. Otherwise, the loaner equipment is just fine. If not, they have plenty of extras with which to replace it.

EXCURSIONS: We only did the “shopping extravaganza”, which took us into the city of Castries. It was a cheap way to spend the morning, see the local economy, and get some gaudy souvenirs. They were less likely to bargain in the local market than I’ve seen in other places around the world. Don’t expect to get too much of a discount from the prices they quote. We could have done without the trip to the ‘duty-free’ mall, but I don’t blame them for trying to get as much of our money as they can. Overall, it was a positive experience. While the Eastern Caribbean dollar (EC) is the local currency, $US are accepted everywhere.

GIFT SHOP: A little larger and more well-stocked than expected. Except for the clothing, the prices weren’t out of line with what you’d expect. Indeed, most souvenirs were the same price that you’d find in the markets. There’s also an unofficial ‘beach shop’ near the water activities shop, where you can purchase things from local vendors. Again all the prices seem to be pretty standard.

SPA: Though I didn’t experience any of the treatments, my lovely companion has had many different massages from many different sources. She tends to prefer a deep, sports-type massage, as opposed to a feel-good fluff massage. We skeptically scheduled her first appointment, not expecting much. She had nothing but good things to say about it afterwards, and was very impressed at the quality and experience of the lady she saw. In fact, she quickly scheduled another treatment for the next day. If you’re particular, it would probably help to talk to them about what you’re wanting or expecting, so that they can schedule you with someone whose style fits what you’re looking for.

CHECKOUT: You’re asked to confirm your departure 24 hours from when you’ll be leaving the resort. We did so, and were told that we’d be getting a letter explaining the process. At 6:30 on the evening before we left, the letter arrived. It very clearly completely laid out the steps we would have to take, and the process that would take place. We felt a bit of anxiety when we still didn’t see our bags outside the lobby, some 15 minutes before we were to board the bus. They had apparently gotten the room number wrong. After a friendly reminder, they sent someone to gather our things. It actually worked to our advantage, as we ended up getting our own private car to shuttle us to the Hewannorra Airport, 1.5 hours away. Our driver, Mr. Denys Cherry (758-584-9316) was an absolute delight….telling us history and interesting facts about the island, and even stopping at scenic overlooks for us to take pictures. We found that he also hires out privately. If we ever go back to St. Lucia, I fully intend on arranging an afternoon for him to continue our brief education. Customs is actually quite thorough when you’re leaving the island. If you do any local shopping, you’ll notice that there are no large shells for sale. It’s illegal to take them off the island, and it’s the main thing they’re looking for when you leave. They WILL go through your bags, so pack accordingly.

RECOMMENDATIONS:
- Call Sandals to confirm before you arrive
- Bring your passport
- Make your dinner reservations ASAP
- If you’ll be bringing your own electrical appliances, bring an adapter
- Make sure you have extra batteries for your dive computer (oops!)
- Order all your drinks up front, be specific if you want specific brands
- As it takes days for anything to dry out, bring enough backup clothes
- If you get a pool towel, keep it until you’re ready for another one
- If you DO have a problem, bug them until they fix it.
- DON’T expect 5-star luxury or wonderful food
- Relax, go with the flow, take it for what it is, and have fun

SUMMARY: For what we paid, and what we were expecting, we had a wonderful vacation. There are many little things that I could have hoped would be better, but no single glaring shortcomings that had a negative impact on our vacation. I would happily and excitedly go back to the Sandals Regency in St. Lucia, without hesitation. Depending on who you are, I hope my review has helped convince you to either stay with the Regency, or look elsewhere for something that better meets your needs.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Resort and Spa

Address: La Toc, Castries, St. Lucia
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St. Lucia > Castries Quarter > Castries
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Castries
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Castries
#4 Family Hotel in Castries
#5 Romantic Hotel in Castries
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Castries
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Resort and Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 331
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•Elevated Millionaire Suites come with 180 degree views, rotating 46” plasma TV’s, a private whirlpool and infinity pool and fully opened glass walls•Private car transfers and 24 hour room service available•Sandals La Toc Golf Course located directly on the resort •10 minutes from George F.L. Charles Airport (SLU), Shopping and Castries and 1 hour from the Hewanorra International Airport (UVF)•“Stay at One, Play at Three” free shuttle exchange privileges with Sandals Grande St. Lucian and Sandals Halcyon •Three magnificent freshwater pools, sixty-five personal plunge pools, and four whirlpools. •Voted Sandals Resorts “World’s Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand”, 18 years in a row•Voted Saint Lucia‘s Leading Spa Resort •Five Star Diamond Award - American Academy of Hospitality Sciences ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals La Toc Golf Hotel Castries
Sandals St Lucia
Sandals Regency St Lucia Hotel
Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Resort And Spa St. Lucia/Castries

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