• Saturday, June 24, 2017

Travel St Lucia

St. Lucia - Saintly Indeed
March 28, 2012
By , Galavante Contributor
Select Photographs by Adagion Studio

Secluded in the mountains and crowned by millions of stars in the sky, this is pure Jade. The gorgeous resort of Jade Mountain is the ultimate place to unplug, with no phones, TVs, or radios. And WiFi?  Forget about it. And, don’t feel guilty about leaving the little rascals at home, because children aren’t allowed on Jade Mountain anyway. This is all about romance. If you’re not getting lucky here, you’re one lost cause. 

A Resort Within a Resort

The ride to the Anse Chastanet resort from the St. Lucian airports to the north and west don’t prepare you for what awaits. The serpentine roads, with dizzying drop-off cliffs on one side, are quite the adventure. But, as you approach the private hill leading up to the resort, you immediately begin to feel a sense of exclusivity, luxury and heightened awareness of your surroundings. The dense foliage almost envelops your car and offers delicious glimpses of the shimmering Caribbean Sea. Hello, vacation. Vibrant flowers make for a magnificent contrast to the white buildings dotting the hillside as you wind your way up the resort’s dirt road. Once through the security gates, you’re chauffeured up to the incredibly private resort-within-a-resort that is Jade Mountain. You’ll feel like you’ve arrived, in more ways than one.

Select Photographs by Adagion Studio

An Architectural Stunner

The island’s exquisite and seemingly untouched beauty is the backdrop for this oasis deep in the forest. The stunning hotel rivals the surrounding nature: Carved into the mountains 600 feet above the beach, Jade’s architecture is a fascinating mix of opulence and The Jetsons. Futuristic columns seem to rise to the heavens, while steel suspension “bridges” lead to the magnificently designed suites, which are called, appropriately, sanctuaries.

Upon entering, you’ll notice more what these sanctuaries are missing, than what they contain. An entire wall of each suite is left completely open to beautiful views of the lush foliage and mighty volcano – the vista practically hits you in the face as you stroll in. The open-air room cascades onto three levels: If you make it past the mosquito-netted bed, you’ll step down into your Jacuzzi, and from there, your private infinity pool overlooking the gorgeous blue sea. The bathrooms are fully decked out, with upscale European fixtures, rain showers, and a massive whirlpool. Float in the bubbling water and you’ll feel at one with nature, while basking in incredible views of the Piton Mountains and the sea sparkling below. As darkness falls, the tops of the peaks disappear into the clouds, the stars start twinkling overhead, and the warm ocean breezes provide the world’s most romantic air conditioning. Best of all: Jade Mountain makes great efforts to respect their natural surroundings, so not only are you being pampered, but the environment is too.

But Jade Mountain’s real asset is not its spectacular views or cutting-edge architecture. It’s the staff. The service at Jade Mountain is impeccable, even by the most seasoned traveler’s standards. It’s high touch at its finest, without even a whiff of annoyance. 

Gourmet In, Gourmet Out

There is good reason that these suites are called sanctuaries – no one wants to leave! It’s not surprising that room service is so popular at the Jade. But who doesn’t at least want options? And at Jade, there are many: The Jade Mountain Club features a sky-top terrace with a 360-degree panorama that is simply divine. Jade’s guests also have access to the restaurants of the parent property, Anse Chastanet, a favor that is not returned – such is the nature of Jade’s exclusivity. The Trou Du Diable, on the beach, serves a delicious, vibrant blend of East Indian and Caribbean cuisine – a treat for the tongue and the eyes. We think the technical term is yum, yum. Dinner is enhanced by a live Caribbean band jamming in the background. 

The Tree Top Restaurant requires a 129-step climb from the beach and is wonderfully reflective of its name. Guests are seated in an open-air dining area above the trees, sharing space with hummingbirds and other feathered friends, and surrounded by beautiful artwork. This is not your childhood tree house. Jet-setting granolas and gourmands will be equally satiated with the organic, locally sourced cuisine.

Il Bel Far Niente

For those who are masters of what the Italians call “il bel far niente” (the beauty of doing nothing), Jade is perfect: You could spend your entire visit simply experiencing nature, getting pampered in the spa or lounging on the deck and beach. There is absolutely no reason to leave this paradise. But if you’re feeling adventurous, options abound, from horseback riding and zip-lining to deep-sea fishing and dolphin- and whale-watching. Fashionistas and souvenir-seekers can take shopping excursions to Marigot Bay and Pointe Seraphine for duty-free shopping. If there’s one worthy field trip, it’s a sail on the 42-foot Serenity: Not only is yacht time a perfect glam addition to your vacation, but it also offers the chance to see the architectural wonder of Jade Mountain in all its glory, from the sea. Pure Jade, indeed.