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“Love St Lucia, not so much with the Windjammer”

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Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Castries
Certificate of Excellence
Madison, WI
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Love St Lucia, not so much with the Windjammer”
Reviewed February 8, 2007

Visited the Windjammer in October 2006 for my sister's wedding. First I'd like to say I love St Lucia, beautiful Island.

The Good
Activities - free usage of all non motorized watercraft was great, the Sunset Cruise was amazing, and the "Rainforest" Zip Lines were amazing, jsut be forewarned about this one, will take up your entire day.

Pools, Beach, Sun, Sand.

Food

The Bad to Awful
Service - resorted to ordering 2-3 beverages at a time due to knowing you would not see the server for another hour. Incompetent Front desk staff, to be fair they just installed a new computer system but it was still inexcusable. Took two months after stay to straighten out the bill as they charges us the same amount of US Funds to match what was owed in EC, quite a bit larger bill than expected...

Shuttles- never on time, never enough, pretty awful. My sister's wedding was at the resort and they couldn't get a shuttle to the villa on time to get the bride to the ceremony.

Wedding Planners/Service - at the tail end of the ceremony torrential downpours swept through, they offered what could be equated to paper umbrellas. Not to worry right, they will at least bring the champange to us to toast the wedding right?? Of course not, it was raining and they couldn't dare have a server get wet. After 45 minutes of waiting after the end of the ceremony, my brother and I who were both in the wedding decide that we might as well run the few 100 yards to the bar to at least get something to toast with. When they saw us coming they finally brought the champange, but we needed to pour it ourselves... Also, during the ceremony, one of the boats that does the sunset cruises was blarring some awful 80s rock. I'm sure my sister's perfect wedding involved hearing crappy music and not the pastor. That said, the private reception afterwards was quite good.

I would rate this hotel a 3 at best, and that would have to be on a good day. The best service we saw the whole time was on the beach during the day. Would recommend only if staying in a private villa and you have loads of patience.

  • Liked — The beach and the pools
  • Disliked — The service, it stunk!
  • Stayed October 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank GLSailor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Leicester
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2007

I travelled to this hotel in November 2006 and stayed with my fiance. I have previously visited St. Lucia 3 times and all previous visits have been to Le Sport. The reason for the change of plan on this occasion was that my fiance and I plan to hold our wedding blessing in St Lucia next year, since he is St Lucian. We were looking for a hotel that could accomodate a reception for 60 guests including children, which experience tells us le Sport, sadly, could not.
Windjammer should have everything going for it: it has a beautiful location on a sheltered bay, with stunning views across to Castries. The resort itself is very picturesque with whitewashed mediterannean style villas dotted on the steep hillsides surrounding the bay.
We are not fussy people and have stayed in hotels of varying distinction, and are also aware that part of the charm of the Caribbean is the laid back attitude where time is of less importance. In the Caribbean to a certain extent you have to expect to "go with the flow."
We chose to stay in an ocean view room. The good features of this room were the roof terrace with lovely views, in addition to a balcony. The room was a good size. It was not of 4-5 star standard by any means however. In particular the bathroom seemed more basic than similar hotels of the same star grading.
With regards to the restaurants we tried all of them. Our favourite was Papa Dons where the service and food were both exemplary. We also enjoyed Jammers for lunch. We were not impressed by the resorts flagship restaurant, Dragonfly... if you want to go out for a really special meal get a booking at Tao at le Sport. We felt that Upper Deck was trying to heard to be a bit different with its menu with limited success.
Having visited St Lucia before however the most disappointing thing was the staff. Before I go further I must add there were a few notable exceptions: Hydrine in villa sales, Bradley at the bar and Tanise and Helen in reception were fabulous warm and friednly people. The rest of the service was however extremely hit and miss. Of particular note, given that we were planning to organise a reception for 60 people, bringing quite substantial revenue to the resort, we struggled to raise any level of interest from the wedding co-ordinators, who frequently cancelled appointments with us at short notice. Some staff were frankly rude, which was most shocking.... this is the first hotel I have ever stayed at where I felt something has had to be said about the attitude of some members of staff. I only hope that other visitors not familiar with St. Lucia do not take this as typical of St. Lucia, where I have found the people delightfully warm and welcoming.
Here are our top tips:
1)10% srvice is automatically added to the bill. There is a space to write a tip, however if you add a tip in this way then it is divided up between all staff and therefore there is no incentive to provide good service. We rather chose to tip cash to staff members that warranted it based on the service they gave.
2) Don't pay for all inclusive unless you have an American appetite!! Apart from buffet breakfast, most meals are reasonably priced. We didn't go all inclusive and between the 2 of us spent less than the all inclusive price for 1 person! If you can get them to include breakfast in the room rate you negotiate.
3) If you stay in an ocean view room go for 104a or one in the same block as they have both roof terrace and balcony.
4) Get out of the resort and visit the island and experience some of the wonderful restaurants in Rodney Bay and Castries. For something really special try Tao at Le Sport or The Coalpot in Castries.
5) Take the tour to the timeshare villas but don't get sucked in as they are a rip off value wise. However for 1 hour of your time they will reward you with a fantastic free sunset boat cruise.

Overall its a resort that promises a lot but fails to deliver due to lack of effort, which is sad given the beautiful location. We are still negotiating with the resort over our reception next year and may go elsewhere as Windjammer expects us to pay more per head in low season than we did on our visit in high season!!! Perhaps Almond??
I would advise that overall Le Sport is a better resort than Windjammer.

  • Liked — All rooms with sea view
  • Disliked — basic for standard of hotel
  • Stayed November 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank Abby_R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2007

We have just returned from a week at Windjammer with several family and friends who came with us to be at our wedding (which was on Pigeon Island). We had a fantastic time there, I cannot understand some of the negative reviews, particularly concerning the food, we all thought it was excellent! We didn't use the shuttle service much as our villa was a fairly pleasant walk away, in fact we much preferred to walk it, at least we could kid ourselves that we managing to get a small amount of exercise!

The beach BBQ is fantastic, but yes, you do have to book. I can't comment on the prices of food and drink as we were all inclusive and didn't really take much notice of the prices on the menus. But certainly Jammers during the day is lovely for lunch, and we all liked the Upper Deck, Dragonfly and Papa Dons too. The breakfast is very difficult to beat, surely?!

We went to the beach every day and never had a problem with towels - someone said they rarely had any and even then they were ripped - well 12 of us went to the beach every day for a week and never experienced that.

The only negative I would say from my own experience is the outrageously selfish behaviour of some people who deem it perfectly acceptable to put towels down on the sunbeds by an umbrella at 7.30 in the morning and think they are theirs for the day. We regularly got to the beach for around 9am to find every bed near the umbrellas had a towel on it, and the owners of these towels then never showed up until lunchtime! So utterly selfish! I did have fantasies whereby on my last day I would gather up all their towels and return them all to the towel hut (as you have to pay $25 if you lose your towel ticket), but I got up too late and by then I was on St Lucia time and had chilled out!!! I will be writing to the management to suggest they put a stop to this practice as we had small children with us who really did need some shade and unless you come to the beach to stay, I really don't see why you should think a towel on a bed makes it yours no matter what time you deign to show up.

But notwithstanding that, we all had a fabulous time and if anyone has any specific questions I can help with, please feel free to email me at anna_jeffreys@hotmail.com.

  • Stayed January 2007
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank Bellsford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Western Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed January 24, 2007

We returned from spending Christmas Week at the Windjammer. Unfortunately, our vacation there was a dissapointment. That is not to say there was nothing redeeming about the place. There were some great assets but overall the problems outweighed them.
>
> The Setting
>
> Absolutely gorgeous. Great views. Nice landscaping. Nice sounds of frogs (not crickets) at night. Hummingbirds and finches and quits everywhere. Birds were overly tame though (probably not something windjammer can control). Several landed on our arms as we were relaxing on our porch. We liked it, until one pooped on my computer while I was typing! They are constructing more villas. The construction was higher
up so didn't bother us but I don't see how the small beach area can accomodate more people. It was already neck to neck beach chairs.
>
> The Beach Front/Main Pool
>
> Way too small for the number of people. The influx of cruise ship day trippers didn't help matters. Not enough towels. Excessive noise from piped in music, bands and staff howling on microphones. Sewer stench after rains. Not a walking beach and snorkeling was fair at best. Water sports were great though. Although, we didn't figure that out until the
last part of our trip because we weren't told about all the free
offerings, e.g. daily snorkeling trips, tube rides. The main pool is
large enough for sure but oddly there are few beach chairs there.
Mainly restaurant tables or areas for vendors of various island stuff. There are far too few umbrellas for shade at both the pool and beach.
>
> Rooms and Upper Pool Area:
>
> The rooms were fine, not great but fine. Sheets were lousy. there were railings and tiling that needed work. Villas were much nicer, definitely the way to go. All rooms and villas are up a steep hill from the main area. The upper pool by the rooms was very nice, but there is no bar or drink service there. They couldn't get the temperature in the Jacuzzi right, either luke warm or way too hot.
>
> Transport:
>
> Vans are an environmental and safety hazard. They careen up and down the hills, sometimes with only 1 or 2 people. We witnessed a very close call between a van and a group of children in the kid's camp. The wait could also be lengthy and the ride very long if you were dropped off last. They should switch to a greater volume of golf carts and use vans
only for luggage.
>
> Food:
>
> Pretty bad. Breakfasts were fine but only weak coffee before someone got around to turning on the espresso machine (located at the bar, not in the breakfast area). The local salt fish, the couple of times it was offered (yes at breakfast) was good and one of the only local dishes at the place. Buffet lunches were acceptable, not great. Ordered lunches took way too long. Salad portions were tiny and expensive. Dinner was
just abysmal. No other way to put it. The seafood buffet one night
consisted of chicken, lamb, ribs, and imported salmon! come on, we're on an island but there was not an indigineous fish in sight at the restaurants. Vegetables were either canned or terribly overcooked. We abandoned the all inclusive and started taxing to restaurants outside of the resort, which were good. The Coal Pot is outstanding by the way.
>
> Computer Access:
>
> A sad reality is that many of us have to work or access the outside world when on vacation. This resort is not at all equipped for that. There is no internet access, or even desks, in the rooms. The lobby wireless access is spotty at best and all of the outlets are being used by lamps or phones so you have to rely on battery power exclusively. If all you want to do is check email you can buy a card for an internet machine but it doesn't facilitate any real surfing.
>
> Service:
>
> The staff was always nice and smiling. They were eager to help. But still reservations for dinner were lost, voice mail lights did not go on. Laundry was lost. Helicopter reservations to the airport were not made when requested. Phone calls were not returned. Other requests for fixing broken stuff were ignored. The truth is that the Time Share customers rule. Even one staff member confirmed that time share owners are given better service and really catered to. We were told that the bands at the beach were at their request and that they get priority on
dinner reservations, dropped off first by the vans and just generally get better attention. True, they're there repeatedly and know the staff on a more friendly level so it makes sense. Be aware that they puff up the resort out of their own economic interest. Even more disturbing was the constant and shameless merchandizing at the resort. Staff would walk around flaunting clothing and jewlry from the stores and try to sell them. The numerous bands all made pitches for their cds. Every day therer were several set ups of vendors at the pool (taking up precious room that should have been used for beach chairs).
>
> Overall, despite the beautiful setting there are far better places to go that offer more value, a better and bigger beach, decent food and good service and also have the nice settings. This place gets a C- at best.

  • Stayed January 2007
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
10 Thank henrymobiles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hackensack, New Jersey
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 22, 2007

We stayed there and had a great time! we drank the day away, and enjoyed the different "specials" they made us. food was OK. lots of couples, and as two single girls it was not that fun.... pizza was fantastic! i highly recommend it.

we lost power for about a day - due to construction at the hotel.

lots of people lost power for longer, but we all seemed to make the most of it. what are you gonna do?

i would go back. it was the most beautiful island, and the people who worked there were incredible accomodating...

  • Stayed January 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank inli10ment
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
19 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed January 22, 2007

This is a late post as we stayed in late May 2006. Wife, 9 year old daughter and I stayed in a 2 bedroom villa for a week. I don’t remember the unit but we were on the third row up from the beach.

The patio area was huge on the main living floor and the lower floor was also large. The plunge pool looked about 8 x 10 so more than enough to cool off for a small family. Views were incredible. I don’t know how many pictures I took of the same view every morning and evening just beautiful. This was the most relaxing vacation I have had in my life. The food was always good, sometimes great. Most days we had breakfast at Dragonfly and then lunch on the beach. Diner we tried restaurants both off property and at Windjammer. We were not on a meal plan.

I read a lot of reviews before choosing Windjammer. A couple of observations I would like to pass along:

The area is densely forested which means there are bugs. I don’t know when the mosquitoes are most active (May-October) but we kept the windows that faced the foliage closed to reduce biting insects. The negative to this is the breeze does not flow thru the unit as well and it can get hot. The bedrooms are air conditioned but the adjoining baths are not. We slept well as long as we kept the air on all the time. The other areas of the villa were comfortable but got very warm just before sunset. We had very few bites. Some vacationers there seem to have been bitten quite a lot.

Some have noted this is not a “5 star resort”. Certainly this property is not brand new. The unit we stayed in could have been updated but had everything we needed. If you are looking for marble everywhere you might do better at the Ritz. When you go to an establish property there is always the problem of something breaking. When you go to a new property you hope they have worked out the kinks or have everything open.

To the previous reviewer that mentioned that her children learned to water ski, thank you very much. Everyday we road the banana boat, my 9 year old learned to water ski and the we all have a fantastic time. We would certainly return.

  • Stayed May 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank jsirwin202
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed January 22, 2007

We just returned from a week at Windjammer. Upon arrival the person checking us in was so rude we wanted to leave. We reserved a King size bed and recieved a room with 2 doubles.I had to call down and speak with a Manager before anything was done. Most staff were pleasant but like others have stated some were just Arrogant and Rude-why I have no idea.. The main pool was really dirty all week-why I cant answer that question and neither could they. Food OK-Beach had broken glass and beer tops and yes it did have a strange odor at times. Room had Birds flying in and out all the time-some might find that cute we did not. We are in pretty good shape, so the hills did not factor in to much except they drive like manics on those small dark roads.As prior postings mentioned the staff did look to see if any additional tips were left and had attitudes before- so imagine what they were like after and you pay 10 percent with the AI to begin with. Speaking of All Inclusive if you do not use this be prepared for whopping food bills-and we are from NYC and it makes it look cheap by comparison.We had Lobster in the Dragonfly and it cost almost 60 US dollars more even on the all inclusive-Wow. All in all its a pretty place with a fairly nice beach,decent food and room-but no way near a 4 or 5 star,factor in attitude and hills and you be the judge add in price-not even close to cheap. Maybe better choices out their.

  • Liked — View-Space
  • Disliked — Clean-up-distance from beach
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
8 Thank billny1013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort

Property: Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort
Address: Labrelotte Bay | Saint Lucia, Castries, St. Lucia
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > St. Lucia > Castries Quarter > Castries
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Castries
#2 Family Hotel in Castries
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Castries
#4 Romantic Hotel in Castries
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 237
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort & Spa in Saint Lucia, offers an unforgettable Caribbean vacation for families, honeymooners and couples. This exotic 60-acre full service resort is a panorama of picturesque, spacious and secluded hillside villas. With breathtaking views of the cobalt waters of the Caribbean Sea, this Mediterranean village resort is alive with the sights and sounds of beautiful Saint Lucia. Absorb the stunning beauty of nature at the Windjammer Landing. From dining on tropical fruits at sunrise to enjoying a refreshing cruise at sunset and only your choice of what to do in between. Richly appointed with the warmth of wood and an exotic blend of tropical furnishings, your spacious villa sets the mood for complete relaxation and truly your greatest escape. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Hotel Castries
Windjammer Landing Hotel Beach
Windjammer St Lucia
Windjammer Landing Resort Beach
Windjammer Landing St Lucia
St Lucia Windjammer
Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort St. Lucia/Castries

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