Staying at East Winds Resort in Saint Lucia
I've been drawn to the island of Saint Lucia ever since I was a little girl. Maybe it's the rich tropical landscape, the sultry beaches, the striking Pitons, or its slight Caribbean flare. Whatever it is, when I got the opportunity to take a girls trip to one of St. Lucia's best resorts (all inclusive, at that) and see the "Helen of the West Indies", I couldn’t resist!
After a quick 45-min flight from our Crop Over destination Barbados, we landed on the lush and luxurious island of Saint Lucia, perfectly ready for nature, relaxation, and a proper vacation.
If you're looking for lesser traveled islands, then you've found the perfect one! At 27 miles long and 14 miles at its max width, Saint Lucia is the second largest island in the Lesser Antilles and still feels like a hidden gem. It is a part of the Commonwealth, so you can expect to find some British influences, like tea time in the afternoon.
East Winds Resort is an award winning luxury resort nestled in a private bay on the northwest coast of Saint Lucia in Gros Islet. You’ll feel like you’re on a remote island getaway when you're at East Winds, yet you’re minutes from the nightlife, shopping and culture of lively Rodney Bay.
Here’s what it’s like to stay at East Winds Resort!
This tropical garden by the sea is a 15 minute drive from the domestic Saint Lucia airport George F.L. Charles Airport (SLU). If you happen to be flying in and out of Hewanorra International Airport (UVF), which is on the southern tip of the island, then you have the option of a 2 hour car ride or a 15 minute scenic helicopter shuttle!
I hopped on the chance to cross “helicopter ride” off my bucket list and took the West Coast Shuttle! From 1st November 2019 East Winds, will be including car airport transfers as a complimentary service in their all-inclusive package.
No matter how you choose to get to East Winds, you can contact their reception desk to arrange the transfers for you!
About the Property
With 30 cottage-style rooms spread across 12 acres of tropical gardens, this isn’t your typical village resort. East Winds offers as much as any mega-resort with the private, cozy atmosphere and attentive staff of a bed and breakfast.
Right on the property, you'll have access to
- a swimming pool
- open-air spa ****Keep reading for a special offer for Cultures Uncovered readers****
- yoga pavilion
- an array of water activities
- fitness trails
- garden paths to explore
- and a private bay beach
My favorite and most frequented place was the Bamboo Lodge, I’d call it the hub of the resort. It leads you right to the dining room and it’s stocked with board games and booze. That’s right. It’s stocked with booze in the evenings and everyday from 4-5pm they set out coffee, tea, cakes, and scones for high tea.
Every morning at 10am you’ll find guests gathered around for a briefing of the days activities.
Although you can charge most things to your room, you can exchange your currency in the reception office for St Lucia currency, the Eastern Caribbean Dollar (EC$). If you can think of it, this property probably has it and the staff will definitely present it with a smile.
On Wednesday and Saturday nights they have musicians perform after dinner.
One night we could hear the music bumping from a neighboring resort, and we longed to join the fun. Instead, the staff turned on the speaker, and I had the pleasure of playing DJ a couple of nights. DJ Brit Brat introduced to guests to the Soca hit “Splinters” by Shal Marshall and by the second night I had requests for it! I closed out the bar to Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody.” Yes, my setlist is poppin’.
The Deluxe Cottage rooms come standard with a King-sized bed or two Twins at your request, nightstands, a tv, plenty of dresser and closet space, extra seating and a desk.
The best way to enjoy a tropical paradise is being outside in it, and having a cottage with a private patio is perfect.
Our patio had a table and a couple of chairs, a ladder to hang our wet swimsuits and towels, and a mini-bar stocked with complimentary water, drinks, and white wine upon our arrival that would be replenished daily.
My favorite part of the room was, you guessed it, the shower! There was a luxurious and large sunken shower with open windows to a private garden. There were screens on the windows, but it was teetering the line of showering outside and I loved it.
The island of Saint Lucia uses Type G and 240 Volts outlets. East Winds provides converters should you have plugs that differ from that (USA electronic devices are typically plug type A & B).
As an all-inclusive resort, East Winds serves up a buffet breakfast, lunch, a light-menu / afternoon snack, a 5-course dinner, and all-you-can-drink beverages all day long. Whether you’re lounging at the pool or bathing in any of the beach seating areas, you can wave a flag and a server will take your order. But you won’t really need poolside-service with a stocked self-serve wet bar behind the pool. It even has a list of drinks to inspire you!
As a model of sustainability, the East Winds gardens supply the kitchen with fresh fruits and vegetables year around for guest to enjoy. I took a tour of the fruit garden to see the plantain and coconut trees, but you don’t need a garden tour to see mango, avocado, or other fruit trees spread amongst the cottages.
You could definitely call East Winds a bird watcher’s paradise because tremblers and St. Lucia black finches
will join your table at breakfast, lunch and even dinner.
I love a novelty jam and I had the tastiest jam I’ve had since the uchuva jam in Medellin, Colombia. I discovered the amazing and surprising Coconut Banana Pineapple Jam. Don’t knock it ‘til you try it. It was the perfect amount of sweet and sweet, and I woke up looking forward to eating it every morning.
Besides the fine wine pairings at dinner and the delicious gourmet meals served nightly, for lunch they barbecue on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays and serve traditional creole food on Wednesdays.
If you’re afraid that all the inviting food and tempting drinks will have you packing on the pounds, there are several ways to work it off…
- climb the hills back to your room
- walk the fit trails
- hit the gym
- take a yoga or pilates class or
- dance the nights away
and you’re good!
The Pool & Spa
Pilates & Yoga classes are offered in the mornings, and there's a fitness gym and a fit trail on the grounds. Although we went when the resort was full, the pool and beach seating never felt overcrowded. The pool was the perfect place to lounge around and read a book.
The Spa is like it’s own getaway right inside of East Winds Resort. There’s a serene waiting area and two private open air rooms. During my treatment, the wind and birds whistled me into a meditative state. As soon as I started to feel the warmth of the summer, a refreshing breeze broke through the bamboo to whisk me away all over again.
I could have stayed there for rest of the afternoon, listening to the breeze and taking in her herbal fragrances.
Theresa is the resident masseuse, and what they say about her is true. Her hands really are like magic! Her fingers slid over every mosquito bite and her special blend of essential oils immediately soothed my inflamed and itchy legs. After my massage, I could feel which parts of my body had loosened up and I couldn’t feel the irritation of my bites anymore. I’d say that’s a magic massage.
East Winds Social Coordinator, Simeon, takes the lead on all resort activities and exclusive experiences. Besides the activities available on the resort like stand up paddle boarding, snorkeling, kayaking, sailing, a cooking class, guided walks, garden tours, rum tasting, and yoga & pilates classes, East Winds offers excursions that’ll take you off the resort and into Saint Lucia to explore the beautiful island and its culture exclusively with your fellow East Winds guests.
They offer a catamaran cruise with stops at a waterfall and the Sulfur Springs in Soufriere and a romantic sunset cruise. You can book these East Winds guests exclusive excursions at an additional cost. It’s the perfect another way to connect and cultivate a sense of family with the other guests and staff members during your stay.
They even coordinate a shuttle for guests to attend the Friday night street party in Rodney Bay.
When Theresa decided to hike up the Pitons, the receptionist and Simeon made sure she got the best price for round-trip taxi and helped to arrange a hiking guide once she got to the site. Even though it wasn't an East Winds activity, they made sure she was fully supported as a guest.
A dreamy, all-inclusive resort like East Winds was the perfect way to wind down after a crazy week of Crop Over festivities in Barbados. We enjoyed the islands majestic nature and ate like queens. We took our time checking out of our Deluxe Cottage and then had access to all the facilities until we exited the front gate. That meant, one last snack and walk around the property.
From the moment we entered East Winds to our final drive off, no request was too big or small for the fabulous and accommodating staff.
There were countless times we experienced exemplary hospitality, but one instance stands out above the rest. I was suffering terribly from mosquito bites (make sure to wear repellant when you're outdoors at night & treat your room with their suggested regime!), and by dinnertime it was unbearable.
So along with my Seared Dorado with Mussel and Curry Sauce I requested a side of limes to soothe the itch. As the waiter attempted to clear my limes, I stopped him and bashfully admitted that I was using them for my bites. He mentioned that aloe vera would be a better remedy for the bites. I knew that.
Earlier that day I had pick a leaf from their aloe vera patch in the garden, but at the moment I was desperate for relief. Hence, limes at the dinner table.
Before he brought out our final course, he handed me a skinned aloe vera leaf in a dinner napkin. I have a heart of ice and skin that bruises like a peach, but I was floored by the concern and service I received the entire time we were at East Winds. It’s obvious why families return year after year.
The engaging staff and luxurious facilities make it irresistible. With such a low turnover rate, some of the tenured staff at East Winds have seen guests grown up summer after summer, year after year. I know I’ll be longing for those cool beach breezes, tropical drinks and great interactions for months to come. And I know I'll be a regular, too!
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