Review: St James’s Club Morgan Bay Resort & Spa St Lucia

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As you may already know, for my honeymoon I went to the stunning Caribbean island of St Lucia. After a very long-winded discussion about where we wanted to go, and endless hours of going round in circles, I, for some reason, let my soon-to-be husband be COMPLETELY in charge of where we go on our honeymoon. I must have been absolutely insane to relinquish control like that, as I’ve been known to be a bit of a control freak/Monica when it comes to any kind of trip (though may I add, my organisational skills have made for some bloody amazing holidays in the past). Then, because he knows how much it eats me alive not knowing what he’s planning, he decided he’d keep it a secret from me until either the wedding or when we were at the airport. Shortly after he’d booked it though, he was running his mouth off teasing me about what the temperature was in his chosen destination on that day, but he hadn’t closed the weather app before locking his phone, so when he unlocked it again to show me something it was still there on the screen in all it’s glory. That’s what you get when you get too cocky!

The resort he’d booked was St James’s Club Morgan Bay Resort & Spa in St Lucia, a stunning, family friendly all-inclusive resort set in it’s own little cove on the north-west side of the island. They have a brilliant range of activities, fitness classes, excursions, and spa treatments so they really do cater for everyone. It certainly wasn’t cheap, but it was one of the more affordable all-inclusive resorts on the island compared to some of the other popular ones (COUGHSandals/JadeMountain). When booking, he did actually look at Jade Mountain, but for the same money we paid for 11 nights at St James’s Club we would have only had about 4 nights at Jade Mountain, so that puts it into perspective a bit. One thing that was really good about St James’s Club is that it was completely all-inclusive (aside from the excursions and spa treatments of course). In a lot of other resorts there are varying board levels where you have to wear those awful wristbands depending on how much you could have, but because everything at St James’s Club was included there was not a wristband in sight!

 

Rooms:

We’d booked one of their Deluxe Ocean View Rooms (hubs knew I had my heart set on an ocean view, so he told me he’d booked garden view to give me a nice surprise when we checked in). These rooms are all located at the top of the hill, which I have mostly mixed feelings about. It gave a truly amazing view over the rest of the resort, the turquoise water of the Caribbean Sea, and the twinkling lights of Castries, but it was an absolute bitch of a climb up from the beach, pool, and lounge areas. Although saying that, if I hadn’t had to do that climb at least twice a day for almost two weeks I probably would have left two stone heavier after all the food and drink I consumed, so it was probably a blessing in disguise. These rooms may not be ideal for anyone with mobility problems, however you can go to reception and they’ll take you up to the room in a buggy so there are ways to get around it, but knowing how many times a day we went to and from our room it may not be the most practical solution. Our room was spotlessly clean and spacious with sliding doors and a small terrace looking out over the ocean, it had air conditioning, a fridge, and wifi access so it really had everything we needed. Also we were lucky enough to be on the ground floor so we were able to go in and out of the sliding doors instead of going all the way around to the front door (even though we weren’t supposed to – shhh don’t tell them!)

Caribbean St Lucia Travel Ocean View Honeymoon Diary
The view from just outside our room.

 

Food & Drink

St James’s Club has six amazing restaurants, five bars and a lovely little cafe. The food and drink was so delicious and one of my favourite parts of our stay – surprise surprise. Honestly, we were so well catered for that by the end of our holiday I’d genuinely forgotten what being hungry felt like. Five of the six restaurants required a dinner reservation, so on the first night we ate at The Palms which offers a different style buffet every day. The Palms was also one of the two restaurants which served breakfast (the other being Bambou) and lunch while we were there. I’m just going to point out here that we went in June which is in St Lucia’s rainy season so it was very quiet while we were there, so I’m not sure whether more restaurants are open for breakfast and lunch during the busier times of year. Bambou was probably my favourite of all their restaurants, because the food was gorgeous and the beachfront view was to die for. The food was ‘fancy’ enough to give an upscale experience, but there was still enough choice to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters. I also loved Morgan’s Pier because it stretched out over the ocean which gave it such a romantic atmosphere. The food at Morgan’s Pier’ was mainly fresh seafood which is great for seafood and fish lovers, but if you’re not into that you may struggle to find something to your taste on certain nights. The other restaurant which we ate at was Treetops which serves Italian Pizza and Pasta which is right up my street! (There was also an adorable little family of kittens just outside this restaurant and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t wondering how big they are now). They do have another restaurant called Le Jardin which was a more upscale, fine dining restaurant and incurred a surcharge of $35 per person. We chose not to eat there because even though it did sound delicious, the food in all the other restaurants was so good and we decided we’d rather put that $70 towards a spa treatment or an excursion. Finally they have the Plum Tree Grille which serves light snacks and is located by the family pool and honestly, this was exactly the reason we didn’t go there – we were on our honeymoon and we wanted to stay in the adult parts of the resort. Most of the restaurants require a reservation (apart from The Palms) so in order to make a booking you need to go to the dinner reservations desk in the lobby. When you first arrive you can book your dinners for up to a week in advance, then after that you need to go back each morning and book for that evening. This ensures that all new guests get a chance to try each restaurant at least once, although it was so quiet when we were there it was never a problem. Also some restaurants were closed on some evenings and the menus rotated every couple of days, so it was good to go to the desk so you knew all the up-to-date menus. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t know what I’m going to be in the mood for in three days time, so I was fine with having to book on the day. Here is a few of their sample menus.

Now onto the bars, and hands down my absolute favourite of them all was the Lazy Lagoon Pool Bar. Ordering a drink from a swim up bar has been on my bucket list for the longest time, and I have absolutely no shame in telling you that on our first morning I was there at 10am waiting for them to open so I could finally tick it off my list. (To be fair it wasn’t just the first day I was there at 10am…). The Hilltop Pool Bar was also great as it was an adults-only bar and it had a stunning view over the beach and the ocean. I loved this bar in particular because it was so peaceful being so far away from everything else, and it had wifi. Oh and how could I forget the Tiki Bar! Get this, you’re on the beach working on your tan, and you’re in dire need of a cocktail but the thought of getting up is just too much to effort to muster right now – just hold up one of the red flags they give you and someone will bring your choice of drink directly to your sun lounger. Why is this not a thing everywhere else? Can this be a thing please!? They also had the Sunset Bar & Lounge, which was great in the evening during the entertainment in the Sunset Lounge, the Choc Bay Cafe which wasn’t so much a bar but a nice place where you could get a tea & cake in the afternoon, and the Plum Tree Bar at the family pool. They have a pretty extensive cocktail menu which I certainly did not hesitate to make my way through, and a few that I’d recommend are PBC (Passion Fruit, Banana, Coconut Rum), BBC (Banana, some kind of Irish Cream (Baileys?), Coconut Rum), Mango Schnapps, Passion Fruit Mojito, and their famous Bob Marley. Oh what I’d give to have another PBC…

St James Club St Lucia Caribbean Sunset Ocean View Restaurant
Morgan’s Pier Restaurant

Another thing worth mentioning here is the BBQ which is held on the beach every Wednesday night. I really wish I’d known about this before we went and we would have made sure we were there for more than one Wednesday because it was just incredible. All the restaurants close for the night, and they move all the chairs and tables out onto the beach where they serve a buffet of all kinds of meats, fish, and salads and they also do a hog-roast and a Mojito bar. Then after the food there are performances from stilt walkers, Caribbean dancers and fire eaters which was so cool! It was so entertaining and the night as a whole had such a great atmosphere, definitely make sure you get to be there for at least one of these amazing nights!

 

Spa

Everyone knows I love a good spa treatment. I always complain to my husband that I have what I call “chronic life-ache” so there’s nothing I love more than a massage in order to completely relax. The spa was conveniently located in the same part of the resort as our room was (it’s like they knew!), and it is a bit of a climb up to the top of the hill but it kinda makes any treatment you have better, in a weird way? It’s like “yeah bitch you gotta earn your massage”. It was just the best feeling to be a completely knackered and sweaty hot mess from climbing up that awful hill, then go into the beautiful smelling, air conditioned spa – that must be what it feels like when you walk through the gates to heaven. Also it’s nice that the spa is out of the way of the pool and beach so it makes for a really peaceful experience. The spa has a wide range of treatments from massages to facials, nails to body wraps, and hairdressing to waxing. They also offer an early bird special every day, where if you book either a Classic Swedish Massage, Aromatherapy Massage, Exotic Sea Salt Massage, or an Aroma Stones Massage between the hours of 9am-11am, it would only cost $87 instead of the normal price of around $115. Because of the time difference I was always up early anyway so that was perfect for me, and first I had a Swedish Massage with Anika which was amazing – probably one of the best massages I’ve ever had, and then she recommended the Exotic Sea Salt Massage, which was a Sea Salt Body Scrub followed by the Swedish Massage, so I booked that to have on my penultimate day with Anika again because she was fabulous. If only the treatments were all inclusive then I kid you not, I would have had every single one! Note that if you are sunburnt DO NOT HAVE A BODY SCRUB BECAUSE YOU WON’T HAVE ANY SKIN LEFT AFTERWARDS.

 

Activities & Entertainment

You’ll never be bored at St James’s Club, that’s for sure. Every day they have a different list of activities displayed on the board in the sunset lounge which is a great way to have fun and also meet a lot of the other guests. They do table tennis tournaments, salsa dancing, corn toss, water volleyball, and a range of fitness classes like aqua aerobics, yoga, pilates and a lot more. It’ll come as no surprise to hear that I didn’t actually do any of the classes because I would have been less than useless, but my husband did play water volleyball a few times.

St Lucia Caribbean Sunset Tropical Travel Diary

There is also a water sports shack located next to the beach where you can sign up for one of the many water sports they have to offer. I’m not a very good swimmer so I didn’t do many of them because I was being a huge baby, but my husband did quite a few. He did snorkelling there which he said was good, but there was so much more to see when we went on Joy’s cruises and he went snorkelling between the Pitons, so if you’re really into your snorkelling I’d recommend doing that. We also hired out the kayak’s a couple of times, where we rowed he rowed us out to a tiny beach nearby which was only accessible by water, it was lovely just to stop there and chill out on the sand for a little bit. They also do water skiing which he tried but it’s a lot harder than it looks!

Every evening (aside from the Beach party on Wednesdays) there was some kind of entertainment in the sunset lounge which was great fun. They would have live music, DJ sets or karaoke which was so funny to watch. It was a great place to go after dinner for a few drinks and to unwind from a very stressful day of sunbathing and eating.

 

Excursions

There are so many amazing excursions on offer it was such a shame we couldn’t afford to do them all! Take a trip to the tours desk in the main lobby and you’ll be completely spoilt for choice at which excursion to take. Some of the tours they offer include water tours on their own Catamaran called the Calypso Cat, Zipline Adventures, Dolphin & Whale Watching, Deep Sea Fishing, Tropical Jeep Safari, Rainforest Skyrides, and so many more. One that we really wanted to do was Martinique Splendour where you cruise to the nearby French island of Martinique for the day, which sounded amazing but it was about $200 each so unfortunately it was too expensive, but we did meet another couple who went and said it was amazing. One excursion we did do though was the Lover’s Rock Sunset Cruise for $60 each and quite honestly this was my highlight of the entire trip. This cruise is only available on Fridays, and you are picked up in the lobby at 4pm and driven to Rodney Bay where you board the Calypso Cat, then you slowly cruise down the west coast towards Marigot Bay listening to romantic music, enjoying champagne and canapés, and taking in the beautiful scenery with your loved one. Then once you’re in Marigot Bay they take you on a quick tour around the Bay and explain what there is to do there (they also tell you about all the celebrity houses that are there), and then you head back out to watch the sunset. At the beginning of the trip it was so cloudy and we just assumed that we wouldn’t get much of a sunset, but then when the sun actually went down we were treated to the best sunset of our entire honeymoon.

St Lucia ocean sunset caribbean beautiful
The beautiful sunset we saw on the Lover’s Rock Sunset Cruise.

 

Celebrations

Another wonderful thing that St James’s Club offers is packages for weddings, honeymoons, vow renewals, and anniversaries. They have a number of wedding packages available and you can either get married in the beautiful gazebo overlooking the ocean, or on the beach itself. Their bolt-on honeymoon package sounds lovely too if you have the budget for it, you’ll get a bottle of champagne and commemorative glasses, a 50 minute couples massage, a celebration dinner for two, a room upgrade (subject to availability), and more. You can actually book a private dinner for two either on the beach or in the beachside gazebo, I can’t remember how much it was off the top of my head but I seem to remember it was fairly expensive.

Caribbean St Lucia Beach Sunset couple kiss love

 

Other observations:

Pros:

  • The Wifi in the public areas (lobby & sunset lounge) was actually very good. I’d read online that it was rubbish but I never had any trouble with it.
  • Every staff member we met and spoke to was so friendly, and they couldn’t do enough for you and you could just tell they loved what they do.
  • The gift shop was great and sold a great variety of essentials and souvenirs.
  • The Welcome drink on arrival gives a great start to your holiday!
  • They often showed sports on the TV in the lounge area.

 

Cons:

  • The hairdryer in the room was pants – take your own.
  • There was no plug near the mirror, so I was unable to use my hair appliances for most of the trip.
  • There were a couple of shady characters lurking around the public beach on a couple of the nights, I think they may have been trying to sell drugs.
  • We could still hear the entertainment from our room late at night. It wasn’t too much of a problem for us but for anyone with a young family it might be more of an issue.

 

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If you’ve actually made it this far, you’re a hero and you deserve a bloody medal! If you want to read about what else I got up to on my honeymoon, click here, or watch my travel vlog here!  I hope you’ve found this review helpful, if you’re thinking about booking this resort and have any questions then get in touch!

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3 thoughts on “Review: St James’s Club Morgan Bay Resort & Spa St Lucia

  1. What is it about hotel hairdryers that are just always so awful?! However, your pictures all look incredible and I think Kristian did incredibly well picking this place – he KNOWS what you need. The thought of a swim up bar makes me want to cry. Can we book a girlie holiday maybe next year please? xx

    Liked by 1 person

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