First, im going to say that this review is LONG overdue. The reason I’m writing it now is that it took me some time to realize how great this place actually was (after travelling to a couple of other places since).
After reading some recent reviews, i see that hotel changed managers and some staff members since we stayed there, but I’ll try to provide some tips and pointers that would still be relevant.
Me and my wife stayed there from May 21st to June 3rd of 2012 for our honeymoon. We got married on May 20th and had 1.5 hours of sleep after our wedding before leaving for the airport to fly to St Lucia. Doing this made our stay at Ti Kaye almost an extension of our wedding ceremony, and we couldn’t be happier about it.
I’m not going to mention all the great and wonderful things about this hotel (as they have been mentioned numerous times in previous reviews), so I’ll just make a few comments that might be helpful to future travelers and some suggestions for the general manager.
- Service was absolutely impeccable. It would take me forever to mention all the instances when staff went out of their way to accommodate us during our 2 week stay. I'll mention one situation which we thought was funny. One night we stayed up until really late (I’ll leave out the details). As a result, we slept in and we were woken up by the knocking on our door at about 11:30AM. Before we were fully awake and realized what was going on, the maid walks in. She sees us in bed, sleeping and goes into panic mode. "Oh my god! Oh my god! Im so sorry!" She started running away from our cottage and kept apologizing along the way. She must've said "I’m sorry" 20 times". It didn’t really bother us, and when we finally left our room i left a tip as usual. She refused to take the tip for the next 3 or 4 days.
-The only real problem we had in this hotel was the party boats arriving a few times a day to our beach. I realize that this isn’t the hotel's fault, and there isn’t much they can do about it, but I’ll still mention it as it was the only major complaint we had. If there was some way to restrict the boat traffic to the beach, it would do wonders to the overall quality of the beach at Ti Kaye. Having said this, it wasn’t a HUGE issue and the beach was still among the best I’ve been to.
- Another issue is lack of affordable food options. When we were there, we didn’t really care about the cost as it was our honeymoon, but it's something that might prevent us from coming back in the future (this came up when we were considering Ti Kaye for our upcoming 1 year anniversary trip).
Although priced reasonably (by North American standards), hotel could include some more affordable options for budget-minded guests. For example, breakfast was $15 per person. It was a good value for somebody who eats a lot, but my wife typically ate 1 egg and some fruits, and paying $15 for that (since it was a flat rate regardless of how much you ate), felt like we were being ripped off. There should be an option to order individual breakfast dishes for people who don’t want the "buffet".
Another example of what hotel could do is to sell some reasonably priced snacks in the gift shop (such as ice cream, fruits, pastries, etc). The fridge in the room is nice, but it’s somewhat useless because you cant really buy any food to put in it within walking distance of the hotel (and its not like you would get a $50 cab to take you to the closest supermarket and back)
- While on the topic of food, i'll mention that the main restaurant dinners were amazingly good. I don’t know how good the new chef is, but i HIGHLY doubt he can top the previous one.
One small complaint was that they only had 7 different dinner menus (one for each day of the week). If you were staying for more than a week (like we were), it got somewhat repetitive (a couple of times i had to order the same dish i had a week before, as i didn’t like the other choices on the menu for that day).
- People complaining about the stairs to the beach should really join a gym or something. Considering that its only a couple of times a day you have to climb the stairs (at most), it would only be an issue for extremely out-of-shape people or possibly elderly people. We have not seen a single elderly guest at the hotel during our stay.
MOST IMPORTANT TIP:
Rent a car! Before coming to St Lucia, everyone seemed to suggest that driving there is something that should be avoided at all costs. This is couldn’t be further from the truth. Unless you're an absolutely horrible driver, you will actually enjoy driving there. It takes literally 10 minutes to get used to driving on the "wrong side" of the road. Yes, the roads are narrow and twisty, but very scenic. You can go at whatever pace you're comfortable driving. I actually thought that driving the twisty mountain roads was extremely fun.
Most importantly, you will save a TON of money by renting a car. It costs about 40-60$ per day to rent it (depending on the car, agency and how many days you're renting for). Parking at the hotel (and everywhere else for that matter) is free. Rental companied will deliver the car to you free of charge, and you can just leave it anywhere when you're done with it. We drove ourselves to the airport when we left, and just left the car there (saving on cab fare). You can also book the car at the airport when you arrive. You will save at least 40-50$ (often much more) per every tour/excursion that you want to do by driving there yourself. You can explore the island, and go to cool places that you wouldn’t be able to visit otherwise. You can drive to the supermarket to stock up on cheap food/alcohol if you feel like it.
Its almost impossible to get lost, as there are only a few roads on the island (except in major cities). Most roads on the island are in good condition.
We recommended to rent a car to a few couples we met at the resort, and they were all skeptical at first ("we heard that driving in St Lucia is dangerous!"). After giving it a try, they were ALL extremely glad that they took our advice.
I think the hotel staff should recommend this to the guests, as it opens up a world of possibilities.
Seeing negative reviews of this hotel makes me wonder if those “people” are actually working for competing hotels, or if they were completely clueless before going there and expected a typical Caribbean resort (which Ti Kaye certainly is not)
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Overlooking Anse Cochon Bay Ti Kaye Resort & Spa is located on the serene West Coast and is simply known as Ti Kaye, (which means small house in the native creole patois language of Saint Lucia). With only 33 rooms, 2 bars & restaurants, the Kai Koko Spa and a 600+ bin 'Wine Kave' there is no better place for romantic relaxation - combined with some of the best snorkeling and diving to be found anywhere on Saint Lucia right off the beach. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Priceline, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Booking.com, TravelUp, Hotwire, Orbitz, TripOnline SA and getaroom.com so you can book your Ti Kaye Resort & Spa reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Ti Kaye Village Hotel Castries
- Ti Kaye Village Castries
- Ti Kaye Village Resort St Lucia