Stayed in a garden view room for 2 weeks for our honeymoon at the end of May through to mid June. We'd never stayed in a holiday resort before and felt that it was a really relaxing experience.
Why you should go here:
St.Lucian landscape is beautiful and their way of life is slow paced and filled with culture which is the whole point of experiencing a long haul West Indies holiday. It really is an experience!
If food, sunshine, excursions and relaxation is up your street,and you don't mind your room being basic and are open minded this is the holiday for you.
Why you shouldn't go here:
If you cannot cope with tropical heat, insects, mosquitos, demand luxury rooms, and a high standard of evening entertainment, don't book this accommodation. Do your research there's lots of different resorts in St.Lucia that might suit you better.
Weather: We went at the start of the hurrican season from 28 th May until 11th of June. The weather was changable and unsettled at times but it was very very hot and humid. We burnt using factor 30 so watch out for the heat as its deceptive! We had no issues with the weather at this time of year, when it rained it was for a short period of time and gave you a break from the intense heat. I've since looked at the forecast there for June and it looks rainy all week, so I'd avoid booking a holiday here from June onwards.
Accommodation:The accommodation was clean, tidy and spacious which was plenty for two people. I felt that it did need some tlc, the bath tap came off the wall in the bathroom! But the rest of the room although a little dated was comfortable.
There was a leak behind the telephone following heavy rainfall, I contacted reception and this was looked at, wether it had been permanently resolved I'm not sure. We used the television when we wanted to have a break from the sun, or short rain showers, and there's a variety of news channels and american channels available. The screen wasn't always clear on some of the channels but it served its purpose.
The bed in the room was huge which was really good and the sheets and towels were renewed every day. Our room also contained a phone,small fridge, bamboo furniture and an effective air-con system. Although I thought the rooms could do with some TLC and modernising on the whole I was pleased with it as there was plenty of space and it was freshly cleaned every day.
Food:The standard of the food was very good and there''s plenty to be had. The breakfast buffet is fantastic with plenty of choice and good service from staff. There are several restaurants available at the resort serving different types of food. These include The Cove: Buffet option from 6pm onwards serving different themed foods every evening such as BBQ, Caribbean, Indian, Mexican etc and breakfast from 6am onwards.
There is La Trattoria serves Italian food both lunch time and the evening (A La Carte) and this was very good quality.
The Grillhouse restaurant has a lovely atmosphere overlooking the sea and resort and serves barracuda, mahi mahi amoung its other options.* Be warned, don't eat here if it's raining, as the flying ants come into the restaurant and one night it got quite bad so we left in the end.
Cafe Asia was impressive serving Asian cuisine with really tasty options.
The resort serves afternoon tea true Brit style with sandwiches, scones, cakes, cookies and tea and coffe which is a nice option if you want something homely and a bit more traditional.
I felt that the resort makes a good effort and places an imporance on the variety of food and refreshments it offers which is extremely good for an all inclusive. The waiting staff are very attentive and can't do enough for you.
Activities: The resort offers many activities with no extra charge which is great. They offer snorkeling gear, kayacking and also water skiing. T
here are reps within the resort based in the Piton Lounge who give you information and prices on excursions such as zip lining, off road buggy driving, snuba, diamond falls and pigeon island. I recommend taking plenty of money to do as many excursions as you can to really experience St.Lucia.
*I can recommend Soufriere as a day trip which involved driving to the Botanical Gardens and Diamond Falls with lunch at a cocoa plantation and then you have a tour of the western coast of St.Lucia through a catamaran which was amazing and really memorable.
In addition, the resort offers water aerobics, pilates, yoga, archery, pingpong, tennis, a gym and spa facilities with treatments.
Staff: Overall the staff were very friendly, some more than others, and I found that they couldn't do enough for you in the restaurants or if we were having difficulties connecting to the WiFi.
Entertainment:Sorry Smugglers Cove, but despite your best efforts, the entertainment does let you down. I think that some money needs to be spend on the stage and equipment as it looks like a school theatre and there were many technical issues with sound when we were there.
There are talented acts there but they are completely underminded by the poor quality of the stage and the sound. Do your staff a favour and give them the stage and equipment they deserve! They work really hard and you're letting them down.
I don't understand why the Piton Longe is the only option for entertainment of an evening, because you do get fed up with it night after night with the same Smugglers Roots band so in the end we would just chill with the telly in the room. This area of the resort needs severe attention.
Watch out for:
Mosquitos. You will get bitten in this country. We prepared as much as we could and still didn't get away with it. Especially if you are pale skined, consider buying the best repellent you can.
We found some ants in the room and also woke up to a small lizard on the wall of the accommodation.
There are cats lurking around the resort scrounging for food but they didn;t pose as any sort of problem.
The prices in the shop are ridiculous charging $15 for a magazine around £10 and $20 for books (£15 roughly). You can purchase items in Rodney bay shopping centre for much cheaper but you have to spend around $15 US to get a taxi there.
Beware on the beach, as there are sales people approaching you to sell you necklaces and hand made gifts and they were a pain as they were really pushy and a little intimidating. I would have spend much more time on the beach had they not been around.
*Watch out for the death slide in the childrens pool. This slide is not for adults! There were a few incidents of adults going down the slide and flying off the edge! Why there is no warning that adults shouldn't use this slide I'll never know.
The lighting in the night is poor, and there is a fair walk to some rooms based on the premises. Please improve your lighting for the disabled residents, partially sighted and the visually impaired! We were offered a taxi to the Asian restaurant which was appreciated, but there is no reason that the lightling should be so poor.
I am so pleased that I experienced a different part of the world in a way where I could have the option to relax, eat good food, do activities when I felt like it and felt at home in the resort. I wouln't return to the same resort, as for the money, I'd want to experience something different. I feel sometimes that people travel looking for luxury and pomp, but St.Lucian culture is down to earth and many of them don't have the luxuries that come to us on a daily basis,so the standard of the accommodation is quite adequate I think.
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- Also Known As:
- Smugglers Cove Hotel Cap Estate
- Smugglers Cove Resort And Spa
- Almond Smugglers Cove Castries
- Smugglers Cove Resort & Spa St. Lucia/Cap Estate