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“Nice location” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Smugglers Cove Resort & Spa

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Smugglers Cove Resort & Spa
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Cap Estates, Cap Estate, St. Lucia   |  
Hotel website
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Cap Estate
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Nice location”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2014

I had been to the Cove about six years ago and the hotel has come down in quality since then. It could use some cosmetic fixes. Fences missing boards, chipped tiles etc. The food was good but i would stay away from the seafood al la carte restaurant. It wasn't bad but if it's going to be a waterside grill and you are going to advertise it as seafood then it should have more seafood. Portions were small and unimaginative. The nightly buffet was good. There are enough choices for breakfast and lunch too.
The physical fitness centre was really good with higher end weight machines, free weights, treadmills, and rowing machines. The only drawback is that it is unstaffed, lacked towels and there was no pen to register. I wanted to register (although there was a clipboard) to show that I had used it so they don't close it.
The drinks were very good and they were very creative in what they could mix. No mint/grapefruit juice so Mojitos and Sea Breezes are out.
Staff are very friendly and the water sports were very good.
The only draw back is the price of cabs to Castries 60.00US round-trip and Rodney Bay 30.00USD round-trip way over priced considering it only cost me 75.00USD for three people to drive 90 minutes from Viuex Fort to Cap Estates. The trip to Rodney bay 15 minutes,Castries about 25, Didn't like how they priced everything in USD.I had ECD and wanted to pay in that but it's easier for them to take the USD.
The day trip on the Carnival catamaran was worth the USD130,00 that I paid.
There is a lot of walking up hill if you do not pay for the top dollar rooms.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,252 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (821)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
St lucia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2014

Beautiful hotel I must say I will come back with family friends hotel staff great it felt like home.the pools are fantastic.the food is tasteful.my god the spa I need to go there again soon.the might not be all what I thought but it's ok.there was greeeeeeeeeeeeeeerttttttt.my kids in a hurry to be back.my on my I did the slide.was fun

  • Stayed July 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
16 reviews 16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2014 via mobile

Booked smugglers despite being apprehensive following the mixed reviews that we had read on trip adviser. However any worries we had were unfounded.
We arrived in st lucia and we're quickly met and greeted at the airport by a Virgin rep, the ride from the airport to smugglers can take up to an hour and it is at times on twisty steep roads - and a couple of times the roads had been washed away! - but we felt perfectly safe and relaxed and took in the beautiful views of the island.
When we arrived at smugglers our luggage was sorted out and moved for us at the insistence of the staff, we had an introductory talk about the resort, where to eat etc and we're provided with a (strong) rum cocktail.
The grounds of the hotel itself are beautiful and we were lucky enough to be close to the main bit of the hotel. The paths in some areas are a bit cracked and wonky but whilst we were there we witnessed repair works going on.
The rooms are basic and could do with a lick of paint, but they are kept lovely and clean and have everything you need. The bed was a queen and really comfy, there were plenty of pillows and the TV had so many channels for when we watched a bit when getting ready at night; the shower temperature can be temperamental, but again it's a little thing that hardly spoils a holiday. Admittedly though we did a couple of times have ants in our room but the cleaners put down some insect repellent down and they would be gone - and let's face it where doesn't have ants?! Within the rooms you are also provided with a safe for keeping valuable belongs in it is an old style safe instead of the more modern electronic ones but it works.
On arrival we were told that we had already been booked into the cove which is the main place for food. But there are also three other restaurants, these aren't buffet style and you have to book to eat at these places, and they have a dress code I.e men wear trousers not shorts etc.
The cove is a buffet style, but the food is so lovely. Breakfast is much the same (cereal, fresh fruit, pancakes, porridge, bacon, sausage etc and a egg station where one of the ladies cooks eggs whichever way you like I practically had omelette everyday!), dinner in the cove is different everyday there tends to be a lot of chicken and fish but they also do pasta dishes, rice dishes, salad and a large selection of desserts! Tea in the cove varies nightly as they have a different theme one night it's Mexican, the other French and the other seafood. We tried all of them, admittedly we weren't keen on french night but if you like French food then I'm sure you would find it delicious.
Waterside creole grill is a seafood/ creole restaurant, it overlooks the sea and the beach, and at night you can see fish swimming around. It's the most romantic of all the restaurants especially at sunset. And a local fish called mahi-mahi is a must try if it's on the menu.
Le Trattoria is an Italian again food is lovely and unlike the waterside grill and cafe Asia it is also open for dinner or you can order pizza and eat it whilst you are relaxing on the beach!
The last restaurant is cafe Asia which serves Asian food it's a bit further away from the main centre of the hotel but again it is lovely and we were greedy and asked for 2 starters because we couldn't decide!
Recommend trying all of the restaurants plus it's a nice change to be served from time to time instead of the buffet style.
There are several pools and they can get dirty due to leaves and flower petals from the plants and trees which surround the pool but they are all cleaned several times a day. The pool with the slide and the pool at the gym are quieter then the other ones. Our favourite pool was one of the main ones which has a swim up bar! The beach is also beautiful and the sea is so clear, we snorkelled most days as there are so many types of fish to see, we also saw a couple of eels and squid! All of the waterspouts are included and the equipment is free to hire, you have it for an hour but can get charged if you run over this hour. My only regret is not doing some of the other waterspouts more i.e waterskiing!
The staff themselves are all friendly and try to help you with any queries that you have especially the bar staff who will make up any cocktails you ask - providing they have the ingredients! A new favourite of mine is the BBC - banana, baileys and coconut cream served over crushed ice. All the alcoholic drinks are strong but are served with quite a bit of ice so if you don't drink them fast enough can get watered down!
There is so much to do as well, there are several activities going on throughout the day from archery, and guided walks, to beach dodgeball and beach volleyball which we played everyday we were there! The entertainment staff are brilliant and are so friendly - Chacho, Nikita - but it is Junior and Dre who made the holiday for us we had a real laugh with them and they made us feel so welcome. They really did make the holiday for us! Also I have to mention our virgin rep Natasha, she does all she can to help you giving advise about various things and explaining in detail everything about the hotel. Tips about sun cream, bug cream, food, drinking water etc and she makes it easy to book trips - we did the catamaran and the street party I recommend doing both!
At night time the entertainment can be a bit hit and miss and on a few nights aimed more towards older couples but overall it's pretty good especially as you can have as many drinks as you want (which we really did take advantage of!), the best nights were the fire and limbo night and the steel pan band night. After 11 the main bar closes and the rum club bar (right next to the main bar) opens and it stays open until about 3am, during the night it also has espn on. Only downside is that it can take a while to get served as the staff can be cleaning up the main bar at the same time!
As mentioned before we went onto the catamaran trip which was brilliant had so much fun on the catamaran, and we went on a quick trip to see the still active volcano and then had a chance to have a dip in the waterfall. Food was provided and was much like what you get at the cove restaurant - chicken, rice fish etc. and all drinks are included in the price to plus the snorkelling is even better then at smugglers there are even more fish and the water is even clearer! We also did the party like a st lucian tour as we weren't confident enough to go out on our own, after reading and hearing about how dodgy it is. But we had so much fun and wished that we went to it both Saturdays that we were there!
Overall I urge people to go as this hotel doesn't deserve all of the bed reviews that people have give it, the people who have complained are people who wanted a sandals adult only style resort without paying the price, which this place isn't. There are families with kids there, there are groups of people who stay up late drinking (us included) and the music can be loud at times: if you don't mind any of these things then you will love this resort! There were all types of people there from families with young babies, to young groups of people to middle aged couples and older couples. There really is something for everyone and all the people who we talked to agreed that they could find no fault with the food, the staff nor the rooms and that they would go again!

Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2014

The pools and kids facilities are good but beyond that nothing impressive impressive about this resort.

Greasy stodgy food, dirty rooms, staff that didn't want to be there, hotel management that were invisible.

Had to change room after finding a suspect bug in luggage that I showed to staff. No apology, no discussion other that a new room two doors down. If it really was a bedbug, two doors away was not a solution to problem.

This place should not be sold as a four star resort. Two star at best overall.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Lothian, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2014

Everything great and to hand, nothing too great a distance away - 5mins to anywhere (and we're in our 70s so not exactly fast walkers). Beautiful pools, spoiled for choice with the food, lovely gardens and superior garden room more than adequate. All the staff were friendly and helpful even the gardeners, nothing was too much for them. Maids did a great job and place always clean. Such a lovely and relaxing holiday we will be going back with the rest of the family next year! Can't believe others have found faults, some peoples expectations are far too high and will never be satisfied. Great place to go either with or without children.

Room Tip: Paying the little bit extra for the superior garden room gives a lot more space so better for a fami...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Sussex, United Kingdom
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2014

My family have just returned from a 1 week stay and we had the best time ever. The food was fantastic our favourite being the Italian which we went to 3 times the service was outstanding.
The water sports were great and lots to do with the help From "DRE" who really had a lot of time for everyone.

Be careful with one of the men selling on the beach think his name was julio he starts very high in price for his bracelets....

We went on the Speed boat tour with Captain Ed who sells the tickets on the beach $80 us per person for the day and i have to say it was great the boat ride home was fast so be ready for that....

Can not think of ONE bad thing to say about our week myself , husband and my 2 teenage boys had the best time ever............

Be ready for the trip to and from the airport it takes about 90 mins we used St Lucia Airport shuttle
$75 us each way lovely cars and a lot cheaper then others...

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Claygate, United Kingdom
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2014

The hotel is just ok, but far from luxurious, although it has a lovely beach. Around the resort there are plastic chairs and tables that are usually left sticky from previous night until late am or even lunch time; rooms are ok but need updating, with leaking showers or stained sofas; our room was one bedroom garden view which had a view but not of the garden just staff accommodation.
Food is really average and the waterside restaurant needs serious refurbishment as the chairs, the wooden veranda are falling apart. Food there is simply awful. The beach loungers are on their last legs and people seem to be leaving their towels really early to reserve those that are ok to use.
Staff are friendly though and kids love this resort due to talking, friendly parrots, separate pool for kids with large slide and special buffet for children. As for adults - this resort was not really for us (although our 8 year old daughter loved it)....it just needed a little more love and attention and really it should not be rated as a four star resort. Yes, there is plenty to drink and eat as this is all inclusive resort but looking at some men with big bellies drinking beer in plastic cups in the sea at 10am until they cannot stand up anymore is not our idea of relaxing on the beach. The entertainment at night was attracting the same sort of drunken crowds with karaoke, talent shows etc. It is far from luxurious.
You cab however use free water skiing and other sports activities. Despite the few perks I would not go back to this resort. To be very frank the resort is a little shoddy.

Room Tip: If you are after cheap and cheerful perhaps you could enjoy this resort but please bear in mind it i...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Smugglers Cove Resort & Spa

Address: Cap Estates, Cap Estate, St. Lucia
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St. Lucia > Gros Islet Quarter > Cap Estate
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Cap Estate
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Smugglers Cove Resort & Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 360
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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

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