We stayed at the Bay Gardens Beach resort from 23rd October after having read good reviews on Tripadvisor. We booked a package through Expedia & got a reasonably good deal due to travelling at end of rainy season.
We arrived at the hotel situated at the northern point of the island after a 1.5 hour drive from UVF airport. The transfer was arranged with realstluciatours via email prior to leaving the UK. They use different drivers from the island – affordable deal ($75 for 2 adults, 3 children) but also check out Smarty tours or Spencer Ambrose for transfers & trips as they are dedicated drivers for their own company so safer – both were helpful & communicated well by emails – contact them in advance of reaching there. The drive is a windy one & those suffering from travel sickness should be aware & ask the driver to go slower.
We were greeted at the hotel by Chloe & Penny; very cheerful ladies. They arranged for punch & non alcoholic drinks. The kids were shown the pool & beach by Penny & were intent on getting in there as soon as possible!
We had requested 2 interconnecting standard poolview rooms but these were not available & we were provided two rooms at ends of the block. This was due to the layout of the rooms in the blocks – interconnecting rooms would have only been possible with a suite adjacent to a standard room. Rooms are excellent & the suite would have been amazing. Our poolview room on the second floor also had views of the sea & the mountain & it was great to sit out on the balcony in the evening & hear the crashing of the waves.
The hotel itself is great; a tempting pool, pretty white sandy beach with great views & very friendly staff. We tried the breakfast buffet once & it was ok but we’ve had more range at other destinations we’ve been to. The Wednesday managers drinks & carribean dinner was a good way to meet other guests & watch the entertainment (fire breathers/limbo dancers) whilst enjoying dinner. We are vegetarian & friendly chef Peter made a wide range of dishes for us – just arrange with the restaurant prior. There was a good atmosphere during happy hour at the beach bar but service time was limited by one blender! No big deal to us but others noted this.
There are restaurants, two supermarkets & two malls in Rodney Bay, which is about 10-15 minute walk or you can take the hotel shuttle bus to the sister hotel. Price of food in supermarkets is comparable to the UK, but cheaper if you resort to local produce – enjoy the many locally grown exotic fruits. Also check out Elena’s ice cream parlour which is the turning before Dominoes & near Pizza Pizza and also another branch in one of the malls. We sampled the numerous traditional Italian ice cream varieties most evenings after a stroll. It is very safe to walk during the evenings in Rodney Bay & we found everyone to be friendly, so take some time & learn from the locals about the island, culture & history. Tobias & Cletus who have a stall on the beach – they served us fresh fruit & coconut water & were good to talk to as were Angela & Wilfred the security guards.
Although we took a slight risk travelling during rainy season, it had only rained for 5 minutes each on the first two days & was sunny for the rest of our stay. The locals stated that this is usually the case (short sharp bursts or at night), so we were happy to have got a good deal.
We did one excursion during the week through “lucianstyle” which is on route to Rodney Bay. It was called Tout Bagay which means everything. It included the following: Volcano, Mudbath, Morne Coubaril Plantation Tour & lunch, Pitons, Swimming under Toraille Waterfall, Snorkeling, Marigot Bay. This involved travelling by Catamaran to Soufriere & then transferring to minibuses for the above stops. Good option if you suffer from travel sickness by windy roads & it was a relaxing trip along the coast. The stops mentioned above were a little rushed. The hotel watersports centre offers a speedboat version of this tour allowing more time to enjoy the stops, but unfortunately there weren’t enough passengers to justify the trip on our selected dates.
Go ahead and book this hotel; the facilities, perfect climate & the excellent staff will make your stay a memorable one. I have dreams of someday living in St Lucia since visiting.
(P.S Penny, the kids still remember you!)
Pool or beach view on highest level - we were in rooms 508 & 512 which had views of pool, glimps...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
November 27, 2012
Thank you for staying with us and taking the time out to leave this lovely review. You’ve left lots of great tips in there for other travellers. It’s great to see that you thoroughly enjoyed your stay with us! We’ll be sure to say hi to Penny and everyone else on your behalf. We’d love to have you become our neighbour on the island, or at least stay with us again!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.