Old French Road, St Lucia
Like its sister property, Jade Mountain, Anse Chastanet occupies a coveted cliffside spot in Soufrière with eye-catching views of the Piton mountains. You can see them from many of the 49 rooms, which echo the tropical landscape with vibrant madras-patterned linens, stone floors, and local materials like teak, cedar, and mahogany, as well as from two volcanic-sand beaches (there’s no swimming pool), which edge a reef-strewn marine reserve that’s perfect for snorkeling and scuba diving. More of a landlubber? A morning hike followed by a yoga session in the outdoor studio sets the tone for a leisurely day at the spa or under the shade of your own palapa. You could also grab your binoculars to spot herons, parrots, and hummingbirds during lunch at the oceanfront restaurant. If adrenaline is your thing, the 12 miles of mountain-biking trails on an 18th-century former plantation nearby should do the trick.
Bonaire Estate, Marisule, Gros Islet 1, St Lucia
With its 26 suites, private beach, and two waterfront bars, Calabash Cove offers a boutique hotel alternative to the typical all-inclusive experience. Set a stone’s throw from the turquoise waves of Bonaire Bay, the sprawling, Balinese-inspired Water’s Edge cottages are the ones to book thanks to private plunge pools, outdoor rain showers, and patio hammocks positioned to highlight superb sunsets. The resort’s remote location ensures tranquility, as does the spa, which offers in-room treatments using ingredients sourced from St. Lucia’s floral and culinary bounty. That abundance is also on display in the Windsong restaurant, where local dishes get an elegant twist (octopus tempura, smoked coconut crème brûlée) in a terrace dining room with the ultimate ocean backdrop. Follow your meal with a brief walk down Calabash Cove’s small boardwalk and stop to spot shooting stars in the dark skies above.
With its striking white facades and terra-cotta rooftops, you might mistake Cap Maison for a Mediterranean villa on the Costa Brava. However, this all-inclusive resort set on a former sugar plantation on St. Lucia’s north coast offers more than meets the eye. The pastel-hued interiors are matched by the sunny dispositions of the superb staff, who cater to every request, whether it’s finding a shady spot by the terraced pool area, booking a paddleboarding excursion off the private beach on Smuggler’s Cove, or arranging for the house yacht to take you to the neighboring island of Martinique for the day. Don’t miss the sunset views at the Cliff at Cap restaurant, where locally sourced dishes like reef conch ceviche and passion fruit soufflé are topped off with some of the resort’s house-made rum.
Some may scoff at the absence of beachfront acreage, but what all-inclusive Capella Marigot Bay lacks in sand it makes up for in amenities, including a cabana-lined pool area with swim-up bar and a ferry to nearby LaBas Beach. Backed by a see-and-be-seen marina that offers some of the island’s best people-watching, the hotel features 124 luxurious rooms and suites that are studies in restraint, with dark-wood accents and four-poster beds trimmed in mosquito netting. Guests are surprised with complimentary snacks each day, from house-made plantain chips to local Piton beer, but nourishment is also in abundance at the resort’s four restaurants—think fresh-caught snapper, jerk-spiced ribs, and lionfish ceviche—and during three happy hours. Meanwhile, the celestial-inspired Auriga spa offers locally focused treatments to those less interested in the fitness center and weekly activities such as body-scrub-making workshops and zip-line tours.
Soufriere, St Lucia
From the moment you touch down on the grounds of the 135-acre working cocoa farm, a stay at the Fond Doux feels like a step back in time. It begins in your suite, one of 15 cottages that have been lovingly restored by owners Lyton and Eroline Lamontagne in the colonial style, with traditional gingerbread trim, four-poster beds, and pastel walls. Though some cottages have private plunge pools, you’ll want to make your way to the cascading main pool, which overlooks a verdant rain-forest glen. If all this sounds a little sleepy, don’t fret: A free shuttle is available to whisk guests to nearby Sugar Beach, and frequently rotating minibuses pass the hotel on their way to restaurants and shops 10 minutes away in Soufrière.
Rodney Bay Gros Islet, St Lucia
Opened in early 2018, Harbor Club is a modern resort housed on Rodney Bay Marina on St. Lucia’s northwest coast. The overall feel is crisp and aquatic, with the bright-white building resembling a cruise ship on the harbor. Given the hotel’s marina setting, there is no direct beach access, but there is a sparking complex of swimming pools with mountain and water views. The hotel also provides complimentary shuttle service via a fast boat to the beach on Pigeon Island Nature Preserve, as well as towels and chairs for a day on the sand. Guest rooms are like spacious ship cabins, decorated in cool shades of blue with views of the marina or mountains. Eight swim-up rooms on the ground floor even feature private patios directly over the swimming pool area. The hotel’s half-dozen restaurants include Caribbean-Asian fusion spot 14North on the top floor, a modern sushi bar, and farm-to-table eatery Julia’s, and more options are available a short walk from the property. A full-service spa and fitness center, nightly live entertainment, and sunset cruises round out the amenities.
100 Anse Chastanet Rd Soufriere, St Lucia
It’s easy to see why Jade Mountain is consistently ranked St. Lucia’s most romantic hotel. Rising high above the sea and offering an unparalleled view of the Pitons, the hotel features adults-only rooms with an open concept (the so-called “sanctuaries” are missing a fourth wall), equally dramatic alfresco baths, and private jewel-toned infinity pools with otherworldly vistas. (The resort was also the backdrop for a season finale of The Bachelor.) James Beard Award–winner Allen Susser prepares the food of love in the on-site restaurant using ingredients cultivated in the resort’s private organic farm, and a rotating schedule of weekly classes, from rum tastings to a tandoori cooking lesson, encourages shared experiences. Guests also have access to the rendezvous-worthy beaches and spa of sister property Anse Chastanet, located just down the hill.
Rabot Estate Soufriere Post Office Jalousle, Jalousle, St Lucia
Nature lovers and thrill seekers alike will find plenty to love at Ladera, located within St. Lucia’s UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Pitons. Perched on a ridge overlooking the iconic mountains, 37 three-walled suites are open to the elements and everything that comes with them: the sea breezes (know that there’s no air-conditioning), the symphonic croaks of the rain forest, and the occasional party crasher, usually a small lizard or bird. In keeping with the eco-friendly focus, furniture throughout the property is crafted from local hardwoods by St. Lucian artisans, and the Caribbean-Creole specialties at on-site restaurant Dasheen (roast conch with pickled vegetables and sweet potato, coconut soup) are prepared with ingredients sourced from nearby farms and plantations.
Val Des Pitons Forbidden Beach La Baie de Silence, St Lucia
For a taste of Miami by way of St. Lucia, look no further than Sugar Beach. Set on a white-sand crescent between the Piton mountains—within a 100-acre former sugar plantation studded with shady palm trees—the resort’s white-on-white cottages have all the amenities worthy of a five-star retreat, from sumptuous Egyptian cotton linens to butler service and access to a private chef. (No wonder Gwyneth Paltrow and Matt Damon have stayed here.) But don’t linger too long in your room. The coral reefs in the bay are home to triggerfish, turtles, and exotic sponges that can be viewed on an instructor-led dive or snorkel trip, and whale-watching, waterfall hikes through the rain forest, and adventure tours on ATVs await. If you have more leisurely pursuits in mind, the tree-house spa offers treatments using locally sourced ingredients for the ultimate in relaxation.
Anse Cochon, Anse La Raye, St Lucia
Set on St. Lucia’s westerly Anse Cochon beach, Ti Kaye is a secluded, adults-only oasis that feels worlds away from the rest of the island. Each of the 33 cliffside, gingerbread-style houses feature outdoor showers and verandas with double-wide hammocks, and some even include plunge pools. Since there are no TVs, the focus remains squarely on the picturesque beach, home to a PADI diving center, crashing waves, and breathtaking sunsets. The same is true in the resort’s two open-air restaurants (don’t miss the banana pancakes at the beachfront grill) and treetop spa. Rum connoisseurs can schedule a tasting in Ti Kaye’s wine cave, but if you crave a rowdier scene after all the relaxation, know that it’s a 20-minute drive to the nearest fishing village—you’ll want to make the trek on Friday nights though, when Anse La Raye hosts its weekly street parties.