What were Caribbean hotels like before trade winds were replaced by blasts of air conditioning, when morning exercise was a walk on the beach and when you sat watching the sunset instead of cable TV? You can still find that Classic Caribbean at Anse Chastanet Resort on St. Lucia’s quiet southwestern coast where two magical peaks, the Pitons, leap from the sea and the mountains are covered with luminous greenery.
Architect owner Nick Troubetzkoy believes passionately in nature. So he created a hotel that makes the foliage and the flowers, the perfumes and the peaks, the sea and the bird song an integral part of your vacation experience. The estate encompasses 600 lush tropical acres bordering two soft sand beaches. Not only do you get a World Heritage Site anchored by the twin peaks on land, the resort’s two crystal-clear bays are part of a designated marine reserve protecting miles of colorful coral reefs teeming with tropical fish.
With such a unique setting as his canvas, Nick Troubetzkoy was inspired to design a one-of-a-kind resort. He was committed to an environmentally conscious development before “green” became fashionable.
A dozen rooms are tucked in behind the coconut palms that line the beach and the remainder tiptoe up a flower decked hillside. To make the most of the panoramic views and the refreshing tradewinds octagonal whitewashed cottages come with wraparound flower draped balconies and louvered windows.
Extra-large deluxe and premium suites underscore the visionary, innovative, sometimes whimsical side of Nick Troubetzkoy: in one suite, the balcony is built around a full-grown red gommier tree; in another a flamboyant tree drapes its red blossoms around the balcony. Some have their 4th wall open entirely to the vistas, yet are completely private.
Anse Chastanet’s ever growing art collection provides a visual feast of its own. There are impressive wooden sculptures and plaques, earthy burlap compositions, painted “sky ceilings” and vibrant acrylic paintings invoking memories of Matisse and Picasso.
And while the sensuous seclusion of the rooms provides some guests with the perfect excuse for lolling away the day on the balcony, others head out to partake in the many activities on offer; yoga, snorkeling, scuba diving, tennis, sunset sailing, sea kayaking or jungle biking, hiking and bird-watching among the ruins of an 18th century colonial plantation.
The less actively inclined simply do nothing, lie on the beach or get pampered in the resort’s spa, Kai Belté. There is a casual beachside bar and restaurant; on the hillside, a panoramic hillside lounge and two treehouses provide the romantic setting for candlelit dinners, with musical backdrops by local entertainers. Tranquility, Romance and Adventure at Anse Chastanet.