On Saint Lucia’s western coast, just north of the laid back town of Soufriere, are twin resorts born out of the side of a mountain. The lower, Anse Chastanet enjoys a buzzing atmosphere and proximity to the ocean scalloped with cosy bays, and the higher Jade Mountain is given to sublime views and birdsong.
Smaller Moon Rooms lead to twenty-nine Sanctuaries which are topped by two Galaxy Rooms, repeatedly voted ‘The best in the world.’ Owner Nick Troubetzkoy, the story goes, was backpacking on this mountain as a young architect when he caught a soul-stilling view of two Pitons together and made it his life’s mission to raise funds, and build a resort on the very spot.
The stone walls of the resort flow from the mountain and no effort has been spared in procuring the best materials and tending to the smallest details. Coralina limestone from Dominica remains cool underfoot even under the sun, David Knox’s glass tiles embellish columns that reach for the skies and fibre optics colour-wheels light up the pools in varied hues.
Once your attentive personal major domo (butler) shows you around your stunning abode (pay attention to which buttons work which gadgets!); take a moment to absorb the sweeping vistas of open skies, the Pitons, a forested island and the ocean so vast, it reflects every mood of the sky. All the spaces meld into each other ‘ sleep, soak and stare in the open plan, unhindered by doors, windows, walls or glass and uninterrupted by mod-cons like television, telephone or wifi.
The open bathrooms may challenge the idea of intimacy, but nevertheless are stunningly designed with shower towers and a chromatherapy whirlpool tub that changes colour and is said to have a therapeutic effect on the mind and body.
If there’s any hotel that will distract you from venturing out to local attractions, this is it; but do try to make it out, at least to the Jade Mountain Club, the resort’s restaurant. There, the ‘Jade Cuisine’ menu created by Chef James Beard and award winner, Chef Allen Susser, will without a doubt amplify your sensory experience.
- The best sanctuaries to book are the Galaxy JDI and JEI, which are on the highest level and have the biggest square footage and pool.
- Make sure you are understand how to work all the gizmos, including the lights!
- This is not the hotel for people with walking difficulties but having said that, there is a very efficient shuttle service to and from the beach below.
- For those who find the hour-long drive from Hewanorra airport a bit tedious, a helicopter can spirit you away and bring you to the resort in seven minutes.