St. Lucia has always been on my bucket list, a 617sq km haven crafted from volcanic origins with rich rainforest and striking white sand and I wanted to experience it all! Flying in early morning from Barbados, the hotel arranged an airport transfer from the charming little airport for inter-island flights. It could not have been more seamless. Arriving at Windjammer Landing I was greeted by smiling faces and quickly escorted to my room where breathtaking views awaited - oh and a refreshing plate of chilled, sliced watermelon which tasted almost as if it had been picked just an hour before.
Famished, I quickly raced down to the beach front restaurant, Jammers to catch the tail end of lunch service. I wanted to opt for local flavors so chose a jerked chicken sandwich topped with crunchy slaw which was infinitely divine. The sounds of the crashing waves added to the authenticity of the experience.
The next morning started with a site visit so I could truly discover what this beautiful property had to offer and I can honestly say there is something for everyone here. Nestled on 60 acres of land on St. Lucia’s northwest coast in Labrelotte Bay, lie villas and suites perfectly appointed either for families, honeymooners or couples. The room categories range from the simplicity of an ocean view guest room with varying levels of luxury in one, two and three bedroom styles. The North Point Villas are the pièce de résistance, 3 to 4 bedroom duplex residential style villas just footsteps away from the beach. These villas feature king & queen-sized beds, en-suite bathrooms, a fully-equipped kitchen, enclosed living and dining areas, and private pool.
As a die hard foodie, I was keen to try each of the restaurants. My first evening started at Upper Deck restaurant which offers legendary steak and seafood along with opulent sunsets and amazing views of the Caribbean Sea. Not able to make up my mind, I opted to try both, starting with a tuna tartare followed by a main of surf and turf - beautifully cooked fillet and 3 of the juiciest garlic prawns that I have ever tried.
Having gorged myself the day before and feeling rested as the sun rose the next morning I took the opportunity to check out the health and wellness facilities starting at the gym which is 24hours! Now whats my excuse not to get my sweat on? The fitness suite is stocked with the finest equipment atop a hill that gives you beautiful, majestic views. And the spa ...... A haven calling that calms your mind and your spirit immediately. Whilst browsing the spa menu, I was offered a welcome drink made from soursop and told about its health benefits.
From the extensive menu, I chose to indulge in a full body scrub, 80 minute signature massage and a nature facial. 3 hours later, I emerged like a nymph from the sea - refreshed, invigorated and a totally new woman.
Even though the property is all inclusive, it would be remiss not to take in the beauty of the island, voted by several as one of the most beautiful places on earth as well as a top honeymoon destination. Just 5 minutes away lie the local markets and several popular restaurants. Or if you want to be a bit more adventurous, opt for an all day island tour. Mine involved stopping on the side of the road for a salt fish cassava snack, driving by the piton mountains which are to St. Lucia what the Eiffel Tower is to Paris and swimming in the sulphur springs, which have been dubbed the worlds only drive in volcano. It was simply awe inspiring even for a travel enthusiast like myself. The sulphur springs is an experience that you will definitely smell before you see!
It was not long before my mind turned to food again… we stopped in the town of Soufrière for some BBQ chicken, and WOW, this was some of the most succulent chicken I have ever tried. And the next to best part was that it only cost the equivalent of $3 USD! If only they would open one of these in NYC!
Hidden St, Lucian secret: I had heard whispers of local bread, baked in a wood fired oven on the side of the road. Ask a local where you can get your hands on some. It is only available at certain times of the day!
Back at the hotel, Papa Dons, the hotels Italian hillside oasis was next on my list to try. Stepping into the restaurant feels like you’ve stepped through a vortex straight into Rome with its classic Italian decor and the smell of freshly baked dough in the air. The wine menu alone was impressive and I hadn’t even glanced at what I would be eating for the evening. My waiter recommended an Argentinian Malbec, my favorite and it did not disappoint. Must try options on the menu are the seafood ciabatta and Chicken Piccata Milanese!
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to try out Embers restaurant but you can expect an exceptionally curated menu filled with grilled specialities and signature items. There is also an ice cream shack adjoined to the restaurant serving locally made ice cream and sorbet. I will be back!
This property is known far and wide but the recent renovations adding up to approximately $30 MILLION have completely transformed the old Windjammer into a phenomenal hotel with outstanding staff who are there to please, no ask is too great. I urge you to take a trip to this stunning island and stay at Windjammer as it will not disappoint, and as the Lucians would say, plus tard!