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“kiteboarding dream” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Reef Beach Huts

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The Reef Beach Huts
Sandy Beach, Vieux Fort, St. Lucia   |  
Hotel amenities
Fort Saint James, British Columbia, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“kiteboarding dream”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

this place was fantastic, staff was friendly and helpful, excellent spot for kiteboarding, long beach with cross on shore winds, awesome view from the beach as well. accommodation is not 5 star but very comfortable, would defiantly return to the reef for another vacation!

Room Tip: ask for the honeymoon suite!
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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19 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    10
    5
    2
    2
    0
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Copenhagen, Denmark
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

The reef is a nice place. Great for practised kitesurfers - its deficult if you are new. The food is great, the drinks are tasty and its just a fantastic place to hang out. My favourite place on Saint Lucia.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
2 reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

My girlfriend and I went to St. Lucia to take kiteboarding lessons. She is a beginner and I am a beginner/intermediate. We made arrangements in advance with the owner of The Reef to take lessons for two hours per day during our stay. We specifically asked if there would be instructors and equipment available to give us lessons and were assured there would be.

We missed the first day of our four-day trip because our flight was cancelled. However, we spent three days in St. Lucia, most of it hanging out at the Reef, and only received a total of one hour of kiteboarding lessons. Most of the time, there was only one instructor available and he had other lessons. On the second and third day of our stay, the instructor took walk-up lessons even when we had already scheduled our lessons in advance, and so was not available when we showed up for our lessons.

I took lessons at one other place in the Caribbean (Exuma Kiteboarding in the Bahamas) and the experience was completely different. The owner, who is also a kiteboarder and instructor, worked hard to accommodate us and provide lessons whenever the winds were good. At The Reef, there were no instructors available most of the time, and the owner does not appear to be involved in running the kiteboarding center or the lessons.

If you are an experienced kiteboarder and do not need any instructions or equipment, the Reef is fine. The beach is nice, the cafe has a pleasant, relaxed atmosphere, and there are few other kiteboarders so you will mostly have the water to yourself. If, however, you would like to take lessons, I strongly recommend you go to another place.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reef_StLucia, Manager at The Reef Beach Huts, responded to this review, January 22, 2013
I'm not really sure that it's necessary to have this correspondence on TripAdvisor, after we had it on email once already, with no further response from the client's side, but I guess we will simply share our response to him at the time, verbatim. Incidentally, this guest did not actually stay at The Reef Beach Huts but at Villa Caribbean Dream (which we recommended, and which he deservedly rated with 5 stars). "Dear J, thanks for your email. Sorry to hear you did not get the amount of lessons you wanted. It would have been nice if we could have given you at least enough hours to get you back on the water and practising on your own - under supervision if necessary - and your girl friend at least 3 or 6 hours so she would have been bitten by the kiting bug, even if not up and going quite all the way yet. As you noticed, the weather was not very conducive to teaching 8 or 9 hours straight every day with 2 instructors, which is what we could have, and would have done, if we'd had straight wind throughout. It's not uncommon for us to start at 7am and finish at 6pm on busy, windy days. Unfortunately, these 10 days over Christmas and the New Year is the busiest time of the entire year at the centre, and with rain showers killing the wind for hours on end pre-booked lessons (from before your arrival and like yours) got shuffled up into subsequent days. In the Caribbean in general, flexibility makes for efficiency. Wind-based water sports in particular always require a certain amount of flexibility on the part of everyone: practitioner, student and instructor. From your own email account, it's also quite clear that on a few occasions, you weren't quite ready to jump when the circumstances were right for a lesson, and then missed your chance. Through no fault of your own, you arrived a day late. That narrowed the window of opportunity down straightaway by about 25%, on what was already a very short stay. Then the rain got in the way - another 25% or so gone - and then you were late on two occasions when according to your own account, an instructor was in fact ready to take you out. I will check with the guys and try to see how we can still better optimize the opportunities for everyone to get their lessons in, but we had several other pre-booked lessons already on the chart. At the time when you asked, and I replied, that yes, we would have an instructor available for you, we did. I checked with the guys, and we had sufficient gaps in our schedule of pre-bookings to teach one raw beginner, and get another intermediate rider back up and going. As said, with your late arrival, rainy weather, and other mishaps in meeting the appointments, it simply did not happen as we would ALL have liked to have had it. It's a bummer, I can really understand that. We don't run a kite school and work hard all year to be our best, to then go out and spoil someone's kite holiday. But when you're battling with tight schedules, last-minute changes, uncooperative wind, imminent departures, and the need to accommodate other pre-booked students as well, stuff simply doesn't always work out. Kind regards, J."
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aberdeen
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

We've been here for drinks and dinner a few times. Great laid back place on a lovely beach. The food is good basic grub at extremely reasonable prices. There is also free wifi and lockers you can pay for. Next time we plan to do some surfing.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Halifax, Canada.
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2012

The Reef has the friendliest staff, the best Pina Colada and the most lovable dogs on the whole island. A great assortment of locals, tourists and expats. Definitely worth a visit, even if just for a drink.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Somersworth, New Hampshire
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2011

The Reef is great! They have friendly service, everyone is so helpful, and they have the most beautiful beach I've ever seen. My husband and I stayed here for 8 days. We paid $60 USD a night and that included a great breakfast every morning in their beach cafe' They serve food and drinks here all day and into the night. They also are known for their Kite-surfing stays and rentals. We had a great time, and I will definitely go back. There is no AC in the rooms but we found the ocean breeze to be good enough and there were no bugs.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
New York City, New York
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2011

We stayed at The Reef Huts for four days in June and really enjoyed our stay. The huts are basic, wood-framed accommodations made of local stock. Our room had a simple, clean bathroom with hot and cold water, sink and shower. The hot water is actually solar-heated and worked as well as conventional. As it was June, it was a bit hotter than usual and we had to put the fans on high to stay comfortable without A/C. There are mosquito nets to keep the bugs at bay, which worked fine for me, but my fiance didn't have as much luck with them as I did. Obviously the reef is oriented toward those who don't mind roughing it a bit, or prefer it that way. Take advantage of the can of Baygon provided to prepare your room before you go to sleep.

The key to the Reef is the lovely setting right on the beach as well as the wonderful team at the cafe. We arrived after dark our first night and couldn't see what the beach was like. We struggled a bit with the heat the first night, but when we woke up the next morning we were stunned by the beauty of the beach and sea: bright sunshine, crystal clear blue water, white sand beach, palm trees, kite surfers setting up their gear. We spent two and a half days just enjoying the weather and the beauty of the surroundings. Sea kayaks are also available to rent for the non-surfers. There are also a few bodegas on the beach to protect you from the hot sun.

The staff were charming, personable and attentive and we instantly felt at home with them. Breakfast consisted of fresh fruit, eggs to order, fresh hot bread, jam and butter. Simple but delicious, especially the wax apples, a local fruit that tastes a bit like star fruit. The menu is good value for both food and drinks and includes some favorite local dishes like Rotis and curries. Beers are 4-6 EC (1.50-2.50 US), Cocktails are 8-12 EC. I highly recommend their Sea Moss punch, made fresh from the yellow sea moss you'll see floating in the water. Add a shot of rum and it's even better. The cafe runs a tab so that you don't have to bother with credit cards or cash for the duration of the stay and we really liked the simplicity of this approach.

The Reef is also about a 10 minute drive from the second tallest lighthouse in the world standing at 730ft above sea level. The view from the lighthouse is simply breath taking with the Caribbean Sea on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other. You can even see the Island of St. Vincent about 21 miles away on a clear day. The staff can arrange a tour by taxi for 20USD. If you are particularly interested in the lighthouse, not just the view 200m short of it, be firm with the driver about taking you all the way to the lighthouse.

Other reviews have mentioned the noise from the adjacent properties. We were there during the week, so it was relatively calm, but even though we went to bed early (8.30-10pm) we didn't notice any sound from the parties while in our room, and I tend to be sensitive to noise. The airport was also no problem (again, it's the low season) as there were only a few flights a day clustered around 2-3pm. 15 seconds of noise and that's it.

Overall, we highly recommend the Reef for anyone more inclined towards a rustic, personal stay in the Caribbean and we expect to be back in the future.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Reef Beach Huts

Address: Sandy Beach, Vieux Fort, St. Lucia
Location: Caribbean > St. Lucia > Vieux Fort Quarter > Vieux Fort
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Vieux Fort
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Looking for a place to stay? The Reef Beach Huts offers cheap & cheerful accommodation to kiters and non-kiters alike, in rooms located within a courtyard under the sea grape trees, on the roadside of the beach cafe. The rooms are secure, measure 4x4 meters, each room has its own shower and toilet and you can get two single beds or one double (140cm wide). There is no air-conditioning, but all rooms have electric fans. There is a kettle to make hot drinks but no fridge. There is free wireless internet which usually reaches into the rooms also. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Reef Beach Huts Hotel Vieux Fort
The Reef Beach Huts St. Lucia/Vieux Fort

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