Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A quiet beachside village with beautifully designed rooms and well-maintained grounds
Tranquil Cotton Bay Village has the feel of an exclusive gated residential area. Not quite chi-chi but certainly high-brow, the 75 colonial- and chateau-style villas and apartments are nestled just beyond the posh St. Lucia Country Club along a crescent-shaped beach on the island’s northeastern shore. True to its name, Cotton Bay Village really feels like a little village -- a main row lined with townhouse-style accommodations branches off to smaller enclaves featuring access to a stunning and tranquil pool, an excellent kids' club, a lovely spa/fitness center, and a beachfront restaurant and lounge.
Exceptional amenities aside, it’s the villas, townhouses, and apartments that are the real lure here. Eclectic but tasteful furnishings -- hardwood floors, British colonial-style sofas and chairs stacked high with plush pillows, intricate Persian rugs, and slick modern art -- create the feeling of staying in a wealthy relative’s home, rather than a generic hotel room. Full kitchens featuring granite countertops, Falcon ranges, laundry rooms, more cookware and flatware than probably necessary, and furnished balconies and terraces provide a self-contained sanctuary with little reason to leave.
Still, there are plenty of shared features worth venturing out for. To start, the pool is massive and utterly serene with cushy blue lounge chairs, a small whirlpool and a tiki bar. Nearby, a not-so-impressive reception area fronts a spectacular spa. Here, guests can relax around a reflecting pool and take a dip in yet another indoor pool. Vichy treatment rooms, mud rooms, saunas, and steam rooms create a variety of experiences, and at the nearby fitness center, private Pilates and yoga classes are available. Helping maintain the mellow atmosphere is an extensive kids club, which features a nursery as well as a playroom.
Guests are pretty much left on their own here -- and many travelers prefer this to the obtrusive attentiveness at some other resorts. But those looking to be pampered might be disappointed.
In the upscale Cap Estate community, next to the St. Lucia Golf Club
Cotton Bay is located on the northern tip of the island, next to the St. Lucia Golf Club. The northern side of St. Lucia is inherently the "lesser" side of the island, simply because there are no views of the iconic Pitons, and the majority of the tourist attractions are clustered around Soufriere, on the southwestern coast. However, the Cap Estate area near Cas en Bas is one of the northern region’s poshest options, offering stunning views, uncrowded beaches, and a handful of exclusive hotspots nearby like the renowned LeSport destination spa, the Jake Nicklaus-designed St. Lucia Country Club golf course, and the historical Pigeon Island.
All of these destinations require a car or taxi, but distances are shorter and road conditions are considerably better than on the southern side of the island. Those guests who hope to visit some of the south side’s stunning natural attractions (the volcano, the cocoa plantations, the Pitons) should consider hiring a car for a day -- the drive is roughly 90 minutes and nighttime driving is not recommended for those unfamiliar with the roads, which are marked by hairpin turns, deep potholes, and virtually no lighting.
Extra-large villas and apartments with full kitchens and private balconies or terraces
Cotton Bay Village’s 75 rooms are one the resort’s biggest draws. Ranging from one-bedroom apartments to four-bedroom villas, all units feel fresh and new. The decor is best described as classic-colonial-meets-island, and not a drop of tropical kitsch can be found; instead, there are mahogany furnishings with white leather cushions and plush pillows, multi-jet stream showers and marble surfaces in the bathrooms, luxurious four-poster beds, and sleek modern art hanging on the walls. All units also feature full kitchens outfitted to the nines: granite countertops, high-end appliances, spotless white cabinets, and a host of tableware and cookware. Some villas also include private pools and yards.
A fun kids' club, plus lots of free perks for families
The elegant Piano Piano restaurant is a standout -- but it's only open three nights a week
Quiet, sophisticated, and stylish, this luxury resort doesn't skimp on amenities -- it boasts a beautiful Olympic-size pool, an exceptional spa and fitness center, an extensive kids’ club, and a secluded beachfront with open-air restaurant and lounge. The resort’s 49 stately residences range from sizable one-bedroom apartments to four-bedroom villas of impressive proportions -- each with a private balcony or terrace and a full kitchen. This is a great choice for families, given the spacious accommodations and many children's perks, but couples will feel relaxed here too, as it is not overrun with loud children.