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Reviewed 12 April 2012

My wife and I (mid-40s) have just returned from 7 days at Bay Gardens Beach Resort, in Rodney Bay, St Lucia. We have been to St Lucia, once before, 6 years ago on a cruise port of call. On that occasion, we taxied to Rodney Bay and spent time on Reduit Beach, so we had an idea of what to expect, this time round.

Flight

We had free flights from Virgin from when they bumped us off a flight from Dubai to London.

Uneventful flight, paid extra to sit in extra leg room seating on the emergency exit row, which was worth the price. Food was good and drinks plentiful.

Transfer

We pre-booked with PHV Tours. Kimbert was unavailable, but his associate Andrew was waiting outside the Arrivals Hall with our name on a board. Some cold drinks and a pleasant 75 minute drive across the island with Andrew pointing out points of interest along the way. He is quite rightly proud of his island and really knows his stuff.

Check-in

This was straight-forward, fill in a form, copies of passports are taken and a Rum Punch cocktail provided. We were told that we had been upgraded to a suite (Thanks Upgrade Fairy) and shown to our room.

Room

We were in Room 507, which overlooks the pool area. Room was extremely comfortable. A King size double (4 poster) bed, plenty of pillows, a couple of chairs, drawers, TV and wardrobe (with a safe and an iron). The Suite upgrade gave us an extra living area with sofa bed, dining table and another TV and also a small kitchen, with fridge freezer, microwave, coffee maker (with complimentary coffee, tea and milk) and sink The balcony had a couple of easy chairs and a table. Bathroom had a shower over the bath, 2 sinks and a toilet. Finally, there was an additional toilet off the living area.

Pool / Beach

Nice clean pool and surrounding areas. The staff never stop cleaning up. The pool area is very shady due to having 3 storey buildings and a few trees, on each side. We tended to stay on the beach, as my wife likes sun and I like shade. Beach is excellent, comfortable sunbeds and fixed umbrellas worked for us. There is plenty going on with the water sports guts, next door. Swimming is safe although one day there was a red flag out due to rough seas and we did see one or two people get injured after braving the water.

Vacation Club

There is a Vacation Club (Interval International) in operation on the property. Nice people trying to get you to buy in to “time share” properties, that looking at our suite, sell themselves. We did attend a presentation that got us a couple of free drinks, some discount vouchers for local restaurants and a USD 100.00 voucher off our hotel bill.
Timeshare doesn’t really work for us, but what they were proposing didn’t sound too unreasonable, if you are happy to be tied to vacationing only at properties within the “Club”

Meals

We booked Room Only and baulked at paying £16 each for a buffet breakfast, which looked OK, at best. “Spinnakers”, next door (down the beach), do omelette, juice and coffee for £6 each. We did eat a couple of dinners at Trios using vouchers given to us by the Vacation Club sales team and signing the bill to our room account meant the USD 100 Vacation Club voucher took care of it. The food is excellent although the portion sizes of the Appitizers could be bigger. I recommend the Jerk Chicken, the Jerk Lamb and the Beef Tenderloin. They also have a 2-4-1 Happy Hour between 7 and 8pm. 2 bottles of cold piton for ECD 7.00 is a good deal.
We also attended the Managers Cocktail party on the Wednesday, which was a nice touch and the Beach Party on the Saturday. This was excellent, both in terms of the buffet food and the entertainment.

Shuttle buses

They run a complimentary shuttle bus to their sister hotel in Rodney Bay town on the half hour between 9.30am and 10.30pm (except 1.30 and 5.30). It seats about 10 people and takes 5 minutes. We used this almost every day, as the supermarkets in town are nearer to the sister hotel and we bought back sodas, water, beers, crisps, bread and cheese to make breakfast and lunch to eat on our balcony.

You can walk in to town, in about 15 – 20 minutes and we did this occasionally early morning. Midday would have proved too hot for us. There is a coffee shop (“Rituals”, which is similar to Starbucks) about ½ way, which breaks the walk up, nicely.

Other restaurants

We also ate dinners in Spinnakers (see my review), RazMataz (Indian) which was excellent although a little different to curry in the UK and Buzz which had good food, but was very dark, sat in the garden and we did pick up some mossie bites, here.

Weather

Perfect for us. It was 30 degrees, each day with a light breeze. Still warm enough in the evenings to not need a sweater or jacket.

Overall

We had an excellent holiday. The flight was free, so with just hotel and transfer to pay for, we could have splurged and gone to Sandals. However, this would have been 3 times the price we paid and Smugglers Cove would have been twice the price. I know that they are All-Inclusive, so we wouldn’t have spent anything on food and drink, but in the end, we didn’t spend that much, either. This hotel really is excellent value for money. If Virgin want to give us another free flight, I’d return tomorrow.

Cheryl and her staff work really hard and the level of customer service is excellent. If you have any issues, no matter how minor, Cheryl will sort thing out for you. She should be very proud of her hotel and its staff.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank rickfisher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 April 2012

My husband and I spent 8 days at the beginning of March in an ocean view suite (Bldg 9). The ocean view is definitely worth it. Not sure I would have liked not having an ocean or pool view. Everyone at this smallish resort is absolutely wonderful. Everything was clean, friendly and just plain easy. Hotel restaurants are good and there are many that are within walking distance so you have a complete variety. The beach is clean and is a perfect place for a long swim (note, the other hotels on this beach, Reduit Beach, look a bit worse for wear but the BGBR is in perfect condition). The charming fruit boat brings you delicious fruit right to the beach and there is a watersport concession that is part of the hotel that will arrange trips and water taxis. Oh, and Miss Mary's bar at the end of the beach has great spiced rum! If you want something-just ask and the hotel staff will know how to get it for you! We especially liked the size and location (and of course the great staff). We had considered an all-inclusive but when we compared the prices this couldn't be beat and we actually had more choices with the restaurants on site and just down the road (all within walking distance). Some folks we met who were staying at all-inclusive resorts complained that their rooms were a hike away from the beach. At BGBR you are just a few steps away! Also, never had a car and didn't miss it.

The hotel has two restaurants, Trios is more upscale and was totally charming. The chef, Beverly, gave us her sweet potato and soup recipes which were a total hit at our recent dinner party. When we asked what one of the vegetables looked like (breadfruit) the server brought one out to our table! Ate at Trios twice and at the outdoor restaurant twice when they had buffets. The other restaurant that was a highlight was La Terrasse, a French Restaurant in town. Make sure you try it.

We have not been to many of the islands but compared to where we've been, including Mexico, St. Lucia stands out for its beauty and really, really nice people. Everyone you meet is friendly and easygoing. Sundays on the beach are especially fun to watch the families and young people relaxing and having a good time. Also, don't miss the Friday Night "Jump Up" in Gross Islet (staff will explain it). It was so much fun and great to see everyone just enjoying themselves. Would have no hesitation to go back to this island and this resort. (By the way, they are part of a vacation club(timeshare) but absolutely are not pushy about it. See Jackie if you are interested. We approached her about it and after thinking that it was not for us she was totally gracious and not overly pushy.

The airport is a long way away (1.5hours)and our taxi picked us up way too early (Barefoot Vacations which we booked online was a bit annoying) but we took a 2 minute cab ride from the airport to an amazing beach where we spent our last couple of hours watching windsurfers etc... and enjoying one last Piton beer! The taxi picked us up and we were off. The end of a perfect vacation.

Room Tip: Building 9 was ideal. Strongly suggest an ocean view as the view is fantastic. Families seemed to like the pool view. The building nearest the outdoor restaurant (#7?) could have been noisy when the band played. It was great to have the suite.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Karen55_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 April 2012

We went for a week mid March, staying in a beach front appartment. This comprised of a large ensuite with his and hers sinks, shower over bath and loo. The shower was fine, warm and powerful enough, but it was originally a multi jet shower but the jets were not working. The bedroom was big, with beach views. There was also a spacious open plan sitting room with well kitted out kitchen, and a guest toilet room off. The balcony had a beach view too. The appartment was spotlessly clean and in good condition. Wifi is available free in all the shared areas such as pool side, lobby and restaurant/bar. The rooms have Network points and we borrowed the cable as we forgot ours. However, we could pick up wifi from the shared areas from our balcony.

Room Tip: Avoid north facing rooms. Beach and pool view rooms all have nice views. Entertainment is kept at a low noise level and stopped by 10 pm when we were there.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank BerkshireLouloubelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 April 2012

It was our 1st time to st Lucia and we were very impressed! We stayed 8 days at the Bay Garderns Beach resort,ocean front a deluxe suite. The rooms were very clean and comfortable. We had 2 balconies and the view was amazing.The staff was extremely friendly and accomodating. Even the "locals" that sold various items on the beach were so friendly and welcoming. Pro, one of the activity directors always went the 'extra mile' making sure we were comfortable. We have been to many other islands in the Carribean and would definitley return to St Lucia and stay at Bay Gardens Beach resort again..

Room Tip: Deluxe ocean front
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Hugapugor2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 April 2012

We just returned from a 2 week vacation at the lovely Bay Gardens Beach Resort. We cannot say enough about the service and friendly staff from concierge employees Nat and Jackie who had coffee for us every morning, to Wilbert and Wayne in security, Richard and Darryl (Pro) in guest activities, to Beverly-Anne the chef at the delicious Trios restaurant (a must to try), who prepared fresh fish that my husband caught on a deep sea fishing trip.We had considered upgrading to a suite, but we found our room to have plenty of space with a king size bed, large washroom, and a great view of the pool and sea. The location of the resort was perfect. It is walking distance to a variety of restaurants (both high end and fast food), 2 grocery stores and shops along the way. The resort is right on a beautiful beach with plenty of chairs for everyone. The only semi negative is that there was not enough umbrella's provided for shade on the beach. The resort if extremely well kept and would definitely recommend it!

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank tucker5860
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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