My wife and I were excited to finally get to LeSport for a 5 day "weekend" escape, after having read about it years ago. We are from Canada and are both very fit, active people who do admittedly enjoy paying more for a finer experience. This resort seemed to really speak to everything we were looking for in a weekend get-away.
As has been reviewed, the international airport is at least a 1.5 hour drive, so we had planned ahead to have a private car. Looking at people being herded like animals onto mini-buses in the hot, humid weather, I would strongly advise to pay a little more for your own private car. The resort organized it for us. The drive was interesting, through mountains, rainforests, and along the Atlantic coast - all revealing the poverty of the island, but it was good to see how the locals live, the banana plantations and we got a great history of the island from our driver.
We arrived at the resort and were greeted warmly and escorted to our room. We had booked a Grand Deluxe Ocean Front Junior Suite (full suites were sold out) and were taken to likely the best room on the property, the corner suite on the 4th floor of the far ocean front building. With corner views of the ocean, a large balcony and absolute seclusion from the resort side, the room had a great view, was clean and fairly nice (many would find it extremely luxurious but we tend to pay more for nicer rooms and got the sense that this was about as good as it would get at LeSport, which was fine, not a detraction at all).
I'll come out and be honest about the biggest problem with the resort - most people were very fat and many were absolutely obese. How is this a health and fitness resort? We actually felt like we had been duped our first day on the beach when we were surrounded by obese people (no exageration - fully 100 pounds or more overweight) who were smoking cigarettes even though the beach is no-smoking. We asked people to please put out their cigarettes - at a fitness resort. Also, with the likely 90% british influence of guests, many women were topless on the beach, but they were mostly the obese ones who should not be seen topless - it was like watching a car accident, all day long, wherever you would look. It must have something to do with the economy that so many fat people were there, or else LeSport does dupe you in their marketing by not saying "we're actually a fat farm, if you are in shape and want to relax in the tropics while working out and being active, this really is not the place for you".
The food was very strange, as it was again very counter to a health and fitness type of environment. My wife and I travel for high-end cuisine, and never expected anything like that at LeSport, but we did expect healthy food options. Instead you had buffets with fat and unhealthy foods, like a day where you could get a chicken, beef, or pork stir fry for lunch, nothing other than stir fry, in the hot and humid conditions, outdoors, or another had roast beef and yorkshire pudding, for lunch. There was a half decent salad bar, but not much else unless you went to the Deli for a sloppily thrown together salad of sandwich, which was always dry and lacked any kind of flavour. The biggest disappointment was their main restaurant Tao, which we had pre-booked reservations at for a night, and then you need to wake up early at 7am two days before to get another reservation. While written up, the room is great but the menu was bizarre. As someone big into food, I was struggling to see the inspiration the chef used to come up with such a strange menu, which seemed to not focus as much on local ingrdients and used a fusion of asian and european styles that really seemed to miss the mark. For example, I ordered a fish appetizer that had a nicely seasoned local red snapper, but then had smoked salmon served over one piece of california roll sushi - why would you serve that in St. Lucia? A blackened mahi mahi my wife ordered was horrendously over-cooked and in all the meal was very disappointing, although most guests there did not really seem to notice the garbage food, they were too busy ordering "extras" that were not included in the all-inclusive plan (a St. James Cuvee rum I had there for extra was beautiful, with a great, rounded, honey and carmel finish - the only good part of the meal). Our best meal was a local fish (snapper) and chips (plantain mash) dish at Cariblue, although we were almost not seated because my very dressy Prada capris (just short of ankle) were not "full pants", which was against the rules, altohugh I pointed out to the hostess numerous men in open-toed shoes (also against the rules), jeans (supposed to be against the rules), and just generally bad fashion rampant everywhere, who were all seated, enjoying their dinners. We just sat down and enjoyed a great meal. The ClubHouse buffet, very casual, at night was also surprisingly the best bet for food all around, with lots of options, many times a bbq, and you could help yourself to whatever you wanted. We did not even use our second Tao reservation, as it really wasn't worth it (although, again, the service was very good).
The staff at the resort were fantastic. They are very well trained for customer service (except that hostess at Cariblue) and everyone made eye contact, said hello, and truly tried to improve your experience there. Hats off to the great service all around, although of course there are some slip-ups, like guys on the beach forgetting to bring your drinks etc, but so it goes - this is not a $2,000 per night One and Only resort experience, it is LeSport, and for that I was very impressed with the service.
The spa was also very impressive. My wife and I regularly have spa treatments, so while this was not new, the sheer size of the Oasis spa was incredible, and the attendants were all very professional and the environment was nice and quite and relaxing. The fresh water plunge pool at the spa is clearly the best pool at the resort, as you're almost always the only one in it. The treatments were good for being "included", but there is not a lot of training or sophistication with the attendants - they are clearly not registered massage therapists etc, but it was relaxing, which is the primary reason for having it. I would compliment the spa on their service.
Some of the classes are okay, but they are really for people who are beginners, including the water sports we watched daily. We have a cottage and water ski, so the prospect of going out behind a boat, that was seriously underpowered, unless you were a 110 pound woman, and there were only a few at the resort, for a 45 second ski just did not seem very appealing. There was one single woman there in her late 40s, close to 50 who was everywhere, doing every sport, class, and talking to every employee there. She seemed to have fun, but it was a different vibe (and challenge level) than we are used to.
Finally, we never left the property, and were told that it was not really all that safe to (after driving through the islands, we agreed to stay at the resort, which is strange for us). We decided to forego that same 1.5 hour drive back to the airport and instead booked a helicopter to fly us back, which was a 10 minute flight, that they stretched to 15 minutes to tour us around down into the volcano, amongst the Pitons, and through the rainforest. I would recommend this to everyone as a great way to return to the airport.
I am a competitive golfer and did not bring clubs as the local course is not at all what they build it up to be. We passed it on the way to the resort and it was terribly dried out and not well maintained. The golf program at the resort was more beginner oriented, so did none of that, and the tennis looked good but we had no room for our tennis shoes in our luggage (we only brough carry-on luggage to stay light).
In all, we would not go back to LeSport. As a health and fitness-oriented resort, it missed the mark with the fat and out of shape people everywhere, eating, drinking, getting sun burnt, smoking, and not doing anything to try anything healthy or fitness related. We were shocked that the resort so missed the mark on small, details, particularly as it has been open for so long. For example, water stations are set up in numerous locations, but the resort does not have water bottles for sale or available. Why would all guests not get their own water bottle to keep refilling for the day instead of all of the plastic cups they were going through? Why is the gym so small and poorly equipped? With a fitness focus, the gym is not inspiring and has almost no area to use weights or stretch on mats. Why would they not have an outdoor (shaded) gym area for weights, that truly leverages the great outdoor weather experience? Overall, the resort needs a refresh of paint and some minor repairs attended to. The rules need to be better conveyed to all guests as well, such as we had chosen the resort also primarily as no children under 16 were permitted, yet our first day on the beach there were kids (likely 8-10 years old) screaming and playing in the water which totally went against what we were looking for (they turned out not to be guests, but people renting homes who had bought beach passes for the week). That needs to be communicated to people. Also, jeans were not allowed (which we knew and thus did not pack jeans), yet most of the british people were wearing jeans and as noted above that was allowed while good fashion capris for men were frowned upon. Smoking was only allowed in a small area of the clubhouse, yet most of the people smoked wherever they wanted - on the beach, walkways, patio of Cariblue, and no staff said anything). There was a mini-fridge in our room, stocked with a carafe of water that was stale and awful tasting, and that was it - why were there not bottles of water, juice, fresh fruit, or something else in the fridge for us, especially when they have no room service at the resort?
All in all, they have a fantastic piece of property, great beach, the weather is great, and great potential all around, but it seems like the owners are tired of providing as good of a product as they can, and maybe it is partially economy-driven. Was there a deal if you were 50 pounds over-weight? No one told us, or else we would have gone elsewhere. The only reason we went to St. Lucia was for LeSport, and we would never go back to either the resort or the island. Been there, done that, as they say.
If you are going there, you can have a good time and enjoy the resort if you have different expectations. Cocktails and food are plentiful, there are some health and fitness distractions if you don't want to lay in the sun all day, and there is a good quite vibe to most of the place. I would suggest that if you are overweight, want to drink and eat and not worry about much else, but want great weather, this actually is the place for you. It truly is a 4 star resort with a good value for what you get, unless you expect a bit more.
We would never go back, but we enjoyed our experience, we can say we've been to St. Lucia, and unfortunately we ended off our trip getting very sick from e coli from either water or food contamination at the resort after a day of rain, when these run-off ditches coming down the hills turned to rivers smelling of sewage. It was unfortunate that our 5 day "extended weekend" included another 5-6 days of being at home, very close to our washrooms, dealing with the severe gastro-intestinal distress that hit us, at LeSport, which we would not have expected. We thought this would be much safer than Mexico, but I guess things can happen anywhere it is tropical and poor.
I hope this review is helpful to those looking to travel to LeSport. We enjoyed ourselves, but as my title says, it was not exactly what we would have expected, and not in a good way.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.