We stayed ten days, so this is a pretty in depth review. Look no further East Winds Inn is the best resort on the island for those visiting the Caribbean that actually want to see the Caribbean. Don't bother looking anywhere else. Unlike most hotels, which are designed as white-washed tower blocks in which you could be anywhere and not know; East Winds Inn is set in tropical, botanical gardens spread out through the groove of a natural valley leading on to the beach displaying the beauty of St Lucia. When you first leave the airport and make your way there you will panic. The entrance to the road leading to east winds looks like you're heading down a dangerous alley. But after a minutes drive you head through a more private road, a moment after that you'll find yourself at a security check point and you'll start to see the botanical gardens come into play. The security team runs 24 hours a day, 24/7. They're VERY efficient.
Due to a delayed flight we arrived after midnight, of course the reception was shut but a member of the securities night team showed us too our room. This normally simple trip was like walking through the amazon at night. It was dark save for the decorative lamp posts and the wildlife sounds were incredible, the kind you buy on CD to chill out too. I remember talking to another couple staying...We stayed ten days, so this is a pretty in depth review. Look no further East Winds Inn is the best resort on the island for those visiting the Caribbean that actually want to see the Caribbean. Don't bother looking anywhere else. Unlike most hotels, which are designed as white-washed tower blocks in which you could be anywhere and not know; East Winds Inn is set in tropical, botanical gardens spread out through the groove of a natural valley leading on to the beach displaying the beauty of St Lucia. When you first leave the airport and make your way there you will panic. The entrance to the road leading to east winds looks like you're heading down a dangerous alley. But after a minutes drive you head through a more private road, a moment after that you'll find yourself at a security check point and you'll start to see the botanical gardens come into play. The security team runs 24 hours a day, 24/7. They're VERY efficient.
Due to a delayed flight we arrived after midnight, of course the reception was shut but a member of the securities night team showed us too our room. This normally simple trip was like walking through the amazon at night. It was dark save for the decorative lamp posts and the wildlife sounds were incredible, the kind you buy on CD to chill out too. I remember talking to another couple staying at East Winds and they too were unsure if the sound was from the taxi CD player until they got out. When we arrived at the room we found that our presence at dinner had been missed and so the staff had filled our room table with a variety of club sandwiches and fresh fruit. This caring, attentive nature is the very theme of East Winds.
- Service -
East Winds Inn has a number of incredible unique qualities, but none separate it more from its competitors than the most amazing staff you'll ever meet. Each member of the team has a love for East Winds and St Lucia. They come across as a team of people that have found a happiness and want to share it with you. They're excited by everything they have to offer whether it's the incredible food, the water sports, specially made cocktails at the bar or just the view. You won't pass a single member of that team, without a warm greeting or a joke to make you smile.You're not a visitor at East Winds, you're a guest. These guys make it. Breaks my heart to hear people complaining about poor service, I even know who some of them are because I was there and I'm shaking my head at the untruths. You can do two things when you have a problem at East Winds, you can talk to the staff and they'll move heaven and Earth until you're more than satisfied. Or you can just revel in your bad attitude, don't say anything to anyone and whinge about it all over trip adviser. Shame on you if you're the latter, you're hurting a beautiful place and people and giving a false view to other readers looking for a holiday.
- Room -
We booked very late and got the most basic room available. Spotlessly clean, huge, fantastic decor, all windows fitted with bug frames and mosquito nets available upon request. Each room equipped with huge can of super bug spray for crawling and flying (EXTREMELY EFFECTIVE). I used it once, for Ants, outside. Never needed it besides that and even then I was just being thorough. Lovely bathroom and power-shower, great little kitchen with Mini-fridge inc. Water, Sparkling water, coke, sprite, beers and mini freezer. Room cleaned fantastically well every late morning, fridge restocked every day just before. Fresh fruit also provided. Dressing gowns, fresh and folded every morning. Large closet complete with Iron and Ironing board (Dinner is smart dress) and electronic safe. Mirrors everywhere. Curtains, sliding slot windows and lamps. Extremely effective air conditioner, got cold one night after leaving it on believe it or not and that was without the turbo option. Works by remote. There's also a ceiling fan with a gorgeous light capable of dimming, also works by remote. No T.V in the basic room. Trust me, you do not need it. Plus there's a book case and games cupboard in the bamboo lounge near the restaurant. Bamboo lounge is a great place with a bar to unwind between meals if not by the pool (swim-up DIY bar with recipes for cocktail making freshly stocked complete with shaker and measurement thimble!) or on the beach with the beach bar.
- Food -
Breakfast - Fantastic, bacon, sausage, beans any type of egg you want. Fresh pancakes (Try the blueberry), omelettes (try the bacon and onion), fresh fruit, breads, toasts, yogurts, cereals, juices, milk and a new fruit concoction every morning made by Elie. Breakfast is a buffet and there are so so many wonderful choices. (Our breakfast was cold one morning, we let the staff know and they cooked us fresh breakfast and for the rest of our holiday double checked to make sure it was just how we liked it; and it was. Every time.)
Lunch - They do an amazing grill. A specialty over a large fire pit built into a hut. Great to see and great to taste. This MADE the lunch as far as I'm concerned. It smells beautiful. There was a review putting the grill in a bad light. East Winds doesn't serve yesterdays scraps, they might use the steak they have left in the fridge, that's called being resourceful; You'll find signs in your room about East Winds taking care of the environment. But this is top quality stuff please readers don't even read the previous review. Even with the grill on Lunch has a variety of salads, bean salads, meats, fish, soups, vegetables and all sorts, cake and ice cream too. The amount of choice is incredible and there are so many new and native things to try! You MUST, MUST MUST MUST try the BBQ sauce!!!!
Dinner - Dinner is fine dining, four courses each with three options. The food is a testament to incredible skill. Having been a chef in an award winning establishment I tell you now this is the real deal. Gorgeous food, you wouldn't believe how much you can like a food. To previous reviewer, good luck making those entrees at home. However there is a point I'll raise. Sometimes the food can be very much an acquired taste, especially if you're not used to fine dining. There are options like "Squid Ink Risotto". Make no mistake, there will be SOMETHING you can eat from the menu. There was one particular evening when my wife and I were quite tired and we just wanted a good dinner. The menu was a little too adventurous for us. You know when you're just tired and just want something comfortable to eat? It happens. It wasn't a problem, I know if I'd ask the staff for something else they would have provided something else. My advice to fellow travelers, the menu is often available to check a couple of hours before dinner and copies can be often dotted about the beach bar or you can just ask a member of staff to plan ahead. Might be worth doing, give the staff the chance to whip up a fish and chips. East Winds, would be cool if you put a line like "Options available upon request" at the bottom of the menu or something just to make guests more comfortable with asking (if it was already there I didn't spot it). No-one wants to tell an award winning chef they don't quite fancy what he's cooked. Please allow me to stress however dinner at East Winds Inn is out of this world. I just wanted to point out a small snag that can be avoided for a bit of extra comfort.
The evening entertainment is incredible, doesn't matter how good the food is you will put down your cutlery and clap. Great Jazz bands, great saxophone player and a beautiful Steinway piano within the restaurant which is just heartwarming to listen too. The pianist also takes requests!!! He even sang one night! There was also the national St Lucia champions steel pan players at one of the lunches! Absolutely fantastic entertainment, especially at a cocktail party held in the bamboo lounge which had two guys give a cracking performance with a guitar and rain stick.
- Environment -
East Winds Inn is beautiful. It has incredible gardens tended by a man who I think prefers to remains anonymous and continuously just gives the praises to his team. A truly selfless, gifted and warm individual. I however am a git and believe I should name Sylvanus and tell you reader to go and say hello. You'll love his handiwork and his teams. The environment is always clean and well tended (someone on here said the fitness trail was overgrown. Are you sure you weren't walking on the hillside garden tour? It is quite steep ;) We stayed 4th June - 14th June and we used the fitness trail. It was perfect.) The yoga pavilion is readily available, the ping pong table is through the connecting door and the equipment's in the baskets in the corner (took us a while). If you're as bad as us you can get more ping pong balls at reception. If you're as competitive as my wife its also close to the garden walk where you can make up again. The beach is combed regularly. Yep. Combed. I don't know what it's for but it makes it nice. You will get bitten by sand flies, it hurts like hell if you scratch the bites. Go to boots and get the travel med-kit for under a tenner. It has everything you'll need and a spray bottle of bite coolant which works like magic. Buy an extra bottle if you can its not huge but did us the ten days. In terms of mozzie bites (Mosquitoes) get Full Strength Jungle Formula (Green Can, available almost anywhere in the UK not sure about USA) Don't get anything else. The East Winds Boutique offers a formula but if you're British I tell you now to stick with the formula I mentioned. My wife's doctor had a great reason for it that I can't remember but for us it works a lot better, something to do with our diets I think. Two cans did us ten days. Longer if you spread it by rubbing it in. Travel advice, possibly may be advised by travel doctors to get Hep A jab and Hep B. Not a massive necessity but please research and note the difference between the one time Hep A (One year duration) and the booster (20 years) available through a course. Check with doctors. NHS says you don't need it but research contraction and make an informed decision (£60 - private) I didn't get it. Didn't see a need. But always nice to make your own choices.
- Side notes -
Not a place to go on holiday with your mates, it's a bit more intimate than that. There was a family with two small children, but the kids were quite young. Any older or if they stayed for longer they might have gotten a bit stir crazy.
On the whole, it was the honeymoon of a lifetime. The whole place looks beautiful, it's nice and quiet most of the time and the tropical weather is diversely beautiful. The manager also likes to walk around, you'll catch him once or twice as he makes sure you're having the best time possible. Watch the Sea Urchins on the Coral far left of the beach. Take the kayak with your travel partner and take a wander. You won't believe how beautiful this place is. Remember you're not at home, pack some common sense next to your sun lotion and you'll love it. Try not to do too many of the available trips, things are a little more tiring in the heat. But if you do, hit the bar. The pool is quite cool if that's just what you need. We've already started the booking process to come back...
Thank you East Winds. I can't wait to see you all again. Miss it greatly!More
- Free Wifi
- Free parking