St Lucia Adventure at St James Club Morgan Bay
St Lucia Adventure at St James Club Morgan Bay
Last month I had an experience where I was lost for words, totally gobsmacked saying, ‘I can’t even deal!! This amazing occurrence that rendered me speechless and stopped me in my tracks was at the hotel I stayed in in St. Lucia. It’s called St James Club and its smack bang in the middle of Morgan Bay.
After last year’s trip to review two of Elite Island’s resorts in Antigua I was invited to review their resort in St Lucia. I accepted the offer, jumped up and down and did the conga round my office.
I haven’t been before, but I was still talking about the people, adventures and fact that I’d eaten a metric ton of food last year in the Caribbean, so I was absolutely ecstatic to be able to go back!!!
I couldn’t have been happier to finally have a holiday as well, it had been so long and as this year has been crazy at work. I feel like I say that every year though…
St Lucia honestly has something for everyone from twin volcanic peaks the Pitons (set in Soufriere) to some of the best coastline views in the Caribbean. There’s nature trails, jeep tours, art galleries and even zip lining.
From the most exhausted parents or execs in need of total relaxation to people who love to see all of the sights and experience everything available, there’s certainly far more options than you could manage in one trip.
First Impressions of St James Club
Everyone I spoke to before travelling to St Lucia was either mega jealous or telling me amazing stories if they had already been. All of them were bang on because St. Lucia is breath-taking, and the St James Club in Morgan Bay is amazing.
The second you arrive you look around at the massive reception to the beautiful gardens and think ‘damn girl’! Then you look around the beach, the pier and the grounds and just think… is this real life?
St James Club Rooms and Grounds
As the resort is so large there are golf buggies which ferry guests up and down the steep roads that link the rooms, beach, public areas and restaurants so there’s no need to do more exercise than necessary. However, if you’re an active person you get quite a workout walking around instead! This did appease the part of my brain that started to worry quite how much I’d been eating at the buffet.
If you’re on holiday for total relaxation or you’re just not able to get about easily just call that golf cart, put your shades on, and imagine ‘they see me rollin’ is playing in the background. Actually scratch that, play it out loud on your phone!
St James Club is so stunning that you’ll constantly exclaim, ‘Look at that!’ and ‘Wait! Over here!’ as you take in the giant chess set near the main pool, the beautiful beach with such huge aesthetic palm trees or the first time you walk into your gorgeous room or suite.
St James’s Club Morgan Bay has 335 guest rooms and suites, with options for either ocean, garden, or pool views depending on your preference. All accommodations have air-conditioning, private bathrooms, satellite TV, and beach towels. They even use UK plug sockets which is honestly a lifesaver. Whichever country I go to I end up taking all my travel adaptors as I can never comprehend which one is for which country!
Like in most tropical hotels, there are some brightly coloured cushions and sofas about, but the rooms and suites are very tasteful with huge comfy beds, massive baths and showers and gigantic balconies.
We stayed in a one-bedroom ocean view suite in the same block as the spa, and suites at St James Club are pretty big. Our suite was incredibly comfortable with a huge bathroom and a separate reception room!
In the reception room there’s a sofa and a desk, which is pretty helpful if, like me, you need to sit down and give your Instagram hashtags some serious consideration. You also get a beautiful balcony with a table and chairs, I loved sitting out there and watching the sunrise (thanks jetlag)!
At some point, let’s be honest, you’re going to fancy leaving the beach and grabbing something to eat. There is a huge choice at the St James Club with a main restaurant where you can get a buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner every day, 5 other restaurants, a pool bar and even a coffee shop!
Situated inside the hotel’s pier this fun restaurant was our second fave of the resort’s offerings. With the chilled out open kitchen and gorgeous views as the sides of the pier are also open you can gorge on delicious seafood as you listen to the waves around you. The incredible views only add to an already fabulous dining experience.
We tried a selection of the starters and our favourites were the calamari, crab cakes, goat’s cheese salad, prawn cocktail and basically more calamari. For main’s the grilled lobster is crazy delicious and so is the blackened salmon.
For dessert, in addition to ice cream being available, there is a wooden boat in the middle of the restaurant, filled with all different types of desserts and you just help yourself!
The main buffet restaurant where breakfast is served is called The Palms. Most days we didn’t even worry about leaving room for lunch and feasted on omelettes, poached eggs with toast and avocado and tons of fresh mango and melon.
We may have also partaken in a few bakes and pieces of French toast…..well I say a few! Bakes are eaten locally with stewed salt fish or cheese apparently, but I had them with jam and wow they are so good!
In the Palms, lunches and dinners are themed (Italian, Mediterranean etc.) and there is a massive amount of choice, everyone around us seemed very happy munching away, we certainly were.
Bambou is an alfresco restaurant just by the beach. Unfortunately, it was closed when we were there but when it’s open you can get breakfast, lunch and Asian-Caribbean fusion fare food for dinner.
Le Jardin is a fine dining bistro with a pianist to accompany your meal which was amazing. The impeccable service was obvious as soon as we walked in and the food got a 10/10 from both of us.
I absolutely loved the staff in the Jardin restaurant. They were so polite, attentive and knowledgeable about the menu and wines and just super friendly overall.
We feasted on steak, tuna tartare and some very fine wines and were totally spoilt. You really must book in here if you stay at the hotel as it was our culinary highlight of the week.
Plum Tree Bar and Grille
You can grab a quick toasted sandwich or some chips here whilst you’re sunbathing along with some refreshing drinks. We only ate here once before we dashed to the airport, but the food was delightful.
Plum Tree is located over to one side of the resort, away from the main area and near the gym and the surroundings are gorgeous. The resort is huge so it’s handy that you don’t have to go all the way back down to the main area to get a snack.
Choc Bay Cafe
Choc Bay Cafe is a cute little coffee shop for those that miss their daily Starbucks run. Personally, I didn’t go here as I never go to coffee shops in London but if that’s your thing they had all types of tea and coffee and lots of pastries and cakes available. They even serve afternoon tea!
Tree Tops Pizza and Pasta Restaurant
Tree Tops Pizza and Pasta is the last of the resort’s restaurants and serves pizza, pasta and delicious ice cream sundaes. I’d say to go for the pizza and sundae option, that looked the tastiest!
It also looked like for an extra charge you can arrange a romantic meal for two on the beach, I managed to sneak a pic (above) before the couple turned up, how cute is that?! I was half tempted to sit in there and wait for a random proposal.
Activities and Spa
If you fancy a massage or a magical yoga session, you must speak to reception and they can help you organise that. We had an amazing bamboo massage in the spa which was much needed as I turn into a marshmallow whenever I fly. After being pummelled and rolled with bamboo sticks I felt a thousand times better with my troubles (and some of my flight induced cankles) literally melted away.
There are plenty of other beautifying options available, not just massages. The spa was very clean and professional, certainly as good as a London high street beauty therapist would be and the prices very reasonable. You can even get yourself a lil trim if you didn’t get time to pre-holiday at the hair salon.
If you fancy getting out of your room but not really doing anything then lounge at reception if you fancy, there’s free Wi-Fi and lots of comfy chairs, nearby there are games and a TV which looked to be showing the football games at some points (although maybe don’t tell any football fans you’re on a romantic break with if they’re likely to desert you during dinner to watch the game)!
So. Some of us want to unwind, feel the wind in our tape-in extensions, clear our mind and unravel all the stresses of the year when we’re on holiday. And other people want to do every activity available and become the beach GI Joe or Jane. Thankfully St James Club has a long list of activities you can partake in, should they take your fancy and non motor water sports are included in the stay, many other all inclusive resorts charge for them.
For a start we tested out the banana boat ride, I’d done one before and figured it was fun and a low-exercise water sport which we could all enjoy. What I didn’t realise was quite how fast it was! The trip resulted in the lady in front of me shrieking, a lost jelly shoe, even more lost dignity and my hair turning into something akin to sideshow Bob quicker than you can say ‘wig…snatched’! It was such a laugh but in hindsight, some of the other activities listed below might have been less hair-raising!
- Non-Motorised Water sports including Hobie-Cat Sailing, Kayaking, Snorkelling and Paddle Boarding – which are all absolutely free!
- Motorised Water sports including Water Skiing, Wake Boarding and Banana Boat
The main pools are huge (there’s 4 in total) and so we took Steve the swan to the hilltop adults only pool where there was less room to manoeuvre (aka less room for me to drown) and spent the entire morning splashing about and the afternoon sunbathing and sipping cocktails.
Let’s be honest, I fell off Steve multiple times, nearly lost my bikini top entirely and looked like a drowned rat by the end. But it was one of the most hilarious parts of the trip!
Views for Days
The view of the sunset from the hilltop pool is incredible and if you’re here on a romantic trip, this is the place to chill out at sunset with a glass of wine.
Now – we can go no further without a discussion about the beach. Which at the St James Club is jaw droppingly beautiful. The hotel sits in a beautiful little private cove, looking out over Choc Bay, perfect for peak relaxation.
I mean, when you’re knackered all you really need from your Caribbean holiday is a beach, some sea, a friendly person occasionally bringing you a cocktail and hours of watching the sea gently lap against the sand. I wish all days of the year involved such easy decisions in such a dreamy location!
Ok so I don’t have kids, but if I was bringing children on holiday (stop laughing), I would definitely consider St James Club a great resort to take them to. Certainly, most of my friends might think you’d be insane taking kids on a plane for nearly 9 hours. But the couple next to me on the plane managed to manoeuvre a six-week-old baby all the way there, so maybe it’s not quite so difficult? To be honest the changing table broke and drama ensued but props to them, they handled it all with a smile (and a small screech from mum)!
I digress…your kids could live it up at this resort. There’s a kids club for 2-11-year olds so you can have some time to relax (or just have a peaceful shower for the first time all year) and seriously, you know your kids want a bit of peace from you too! Your kids can go and pretend to be cool ‘holiday them’ (I know that’s what I used to do) while you sip a frozen cocktail by the pool. The Kids Club is open daily from 9:00am-5:45pm and 7:00pm-10:00pm.
As you can see there are so many reasons to choose St Lucia for your next holiday and you can really escape from reality at St. James’s Club Morgan Bay.
My next blog post will detail some of the cool things you can get up to whilst staying in St. Lucia including zip lining, jeep safaris and visiting a volcano!
Head over to www.eliteislandholidays.com which is their fancy new site where resort and flights can now be booked all in one to save you time.