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Welcome to Paradise

Posted by Editorial Assistant on 3 July 2024

Kelly Andrews spent a few glorious days at Coconut Bay a haven for honeymooners visiting St Lucia

Located on a mile-long stretch of beach on Saint Lucia's exotic south coast, independently owned and run resort Coconut Bay is an icon of this heavenly island. Offering a unique choice of two worlds in one thanks to its adults-only wing, Harmony, and Splash, the resort's destination for family fun, there's never a dull moment. Kelly Andrews spent a few glorious days at the resort, a haven for honeymooners visiting St Lucia.

sea and hills landscape Following a surprisingly short drive from Hewanorra International Airport to Coconut Bay, I was greeted with a cold towel and delicious cocktail – starting as I meant to go on. I checked in stress free and was shown to my Harmony oceanview junior suite by a welcoming member of the team. The bed was incredible – a king-size four poster all to myself complete with opulent cushions. The highlight for me was the super-fun creative towel animals and personal note the housekeeping staff surprised me with every day. I was sad to leave my room at the end of the trip. I truly had fallen in love with its cool comfort at the end of a day of adventure, and waking up to its scenic balcony with views of the Atlantic.

2 people with cocktails in a bar
For honeymooners the resort offers its adult-only wing, Harmony. With its own pools, sundecks, tiki bar and amazing suntracker loungers, it's a beautiful romantic bubble for couples. From Harmony's vantage point you can relax, cocktail in hand (don't miss Dylan's signature Big Red) as you listen to the gentle sounds of the ocean and take in the breathtaking view of the Atlantic and the Maria Islands.

Located within the grounds of Harmony is Sanctuary Spa, where I headed for a massage. I met with my therapist Naomi who took me through to a beachside cabana for my treatment. Here, I was able to bask in the tranquil sound of the waves and the feel of that warm Atlantic breeze on my skin. Naomi certainly has top notch skills, removing all trace of tightness from the long flight and delivering the best massage I've ever experienced.

The Spa boasts an impressive range of treatments featuring products containing ample locally sourced ingredients such as cocoa. So local in fact that there's an aloe garden behind the spa used for aloe wraps and treating guests who've gotten a little carried away in the sun! You can even enjoy a massage using a calabash from St Lucia's national tree.

bedroom with a large 4 poster bed Serenity is Coconut Bay's couples-only, 36-suite, sister resort, where you can bask in all-inclusive luxury. Your holiday here literally starts the moment you arrive in St Lucia, as your butler meets you at the airport and takes you direct to your suite, bypassing such trivialities as check in! Having received your pre-arrival form, they'll have made sure that everything is ready and waiting for you, from your favourite drinks in your own fully-stocked bar to a tailored dream itinerary. In fact, your butler will think of everything before you do, they might even surprise you with a bath drawn for you ready for your return from a long day exploring St Lucia. The choice is yours: chill in your own private courtyard complete with sun loungers and plunge pool, or head to the tranquil nirvana of the main pool complete with aqua loungers.

The Greathouse at Serenity is included for Serenity diners and carries a surcharge if you're staying at Coconut Bay. The Simply Grilled Catch of the Day, yellow fin tuna, was absolutely incredible. Served with saffron risotto, grilled asparagus, olive tomato relish and beurre blanc, cooked blackened as recommended, it was a meal I'll never forget.

2 people covered in clay by water On the subject of food, a world of delight awaits you at Coconut Bay, literally. Trattoria is the resort's Italian-style eatery, while Silk serves flavours from the legendary Silk Road, inspired by the travels from the Far East to Europe and beyond.

My penultimate night was reserved for dinner at Calabash though, where a menu of Caribbean cuisine and rich culinary tradition is on offer. Freshly caught that day was the kingfish, which I'd regretted not trying since the first night, so it was a must for me. A deliciously meaty fish, cooked in the flavourful spices of the Caribbean, it's something I wouldn't hesitate to order again given the opportunity. The resort has deals with local fishermen who bring in freshly caught fish every day, which is unparalleled in my opinion.

Now addicted to Caribbean food, I couldn't leave without trying the hugely popular Jerk Shack on the main deck. The fun treehouse was built to meet demand after the jerk served at limited times by the main pool was so popular the queues would stretch around it. I can see why. Cooked fresh to order, you have the choice of jerk chicken, jerk pork, jerk sausage and escovitch fish served accompanied by your choice of side. Caribbean rice and peas was my latest obsession and a no-brainer with my chicken – chef's kiss!

For an ultra-romantic meal together, be sure to book a private oceanside dining table at La Luna Restaurant for multi-course gourmet dining and white-gloved service with the usual St Lucia smile. Breakfast is served at Coconut Walk, where there's a myriad of live cooking stations, so you can help yourself to whatever takes your fancy. Alternatively, Veranda is not to be missed. Looking out over the beach it serves a variety of oh-so naughty but delicious breakfasts including Coconut Bay's French Toast Croissant Sandwich. So bad, but sooo good!

There's an array of bars throughout the resort too, all serving an extensive menu of cocktails, which I made it my business to try! I've always wanted to experience a swim-up bar, so I paid a visit to the one on the Splash side quick smart. Island Vibrations cocktail in hand, there I literally lived my best life. For a true taste of the Caribbean though, head to Paradise Beach Bar located on the resort's beautiful stretch of beach. T-shirts gifted by guests from around the world adorn the shack's ceiling, for a chilled-out community vibe as you take a break from sunbathing.

If rum's your thing, I'd recommend paying a visit to Peter John's Lounge for a Rums of the Caribbean tasting led by the resort's rum master. I enjoyed it so much that I headed straight to the resort gift shop for a couple of duty-free bottles! Sugar Cane Rum Bar also serves over 30 of the Caribbean's finest rums, so go ahead, embrace the spirit of the island.

beach landscape Coconut Bay is a popular location for watersports enthusiasts. Being on the Atlantic side of the island, its coastal breezes make the resort's beach the ideal spot for kitesurfing from November to April. The Surf Shack's certified team of instructors will be happy to work with you whether you're a beginner or an expert, and all the equipment you could ever need is available to borrow as a guest of the resort. My knowledgeable instructor, Linus, gave me a demonstration before the wind dropped, followed by a short tutorial on a wing foil to give me a taster of what's possible. Snorkeling equipment is also available to borrow, and the beach has a man-made reef near to shore that's ideal for beginners and children, or for more advanced snorkelers, there's a sunken WWII plane offshore you can swim or kayak out to.

resort photo When you check in, you'll receive the resort's newsletter detailing the activities you can enjoy throughout your stay as well as the day trips you can book. I was lucky enough to experience the Catamaran Land & Sea Adventure. Our fantastic expert guide, Spencer from Nerv's, collected us from the resort bright and early to take us to Laborie to board a catamaran for an ocean trip to the Pitons for a spot of snorkeling. All equipment was supplied for us, which was good news for me it being a first. We were delivered to two assigned sites for snorkeling, where we had the chance to watch a huge variety of St Lucia's ocean life go about its business. The catamaran's crew were wonderful in looking after those of us who were less confident.

We disembarked at Soufriere and feasted on a Caribbean buffet lunch at The Beacon perched on a hilltop overlooking the Pitons, before jumping back on the minibus with Spencer. Next, we made our way to Torraile Waterfall which, located just minutes from Soufriere, is one of the island's most popular. The 50-foot drop of water offers the ultimate power shower for those brave enough to stand beneath it; another memory that will stay with me for a lifetime.

Our final stop was Sulphur Springs Park, home of the world's only drive-in volcano. At its heart, on the site of the last recorded eruption in 1766, is the mud bath. Guides boast that a dip will make you look 10 years younger. Well, I don't know about that, but my skin did feel incredible afterwards!

As well as day trips and watersports, there are plenty of activities on site at Coconut Bay including art lessons, yoga, aquafit, and dance classes. There's also no shortage of nightly entertainment across various locations, plus weekly themed nights – country and western on Tuesdays and carnival on Saturdays. Carnival Night is so... much... fun! A riot of colour, music and dancing performed by the island's residents and resort entertainment team, it's not to be missed. I've rarely felt so much joy all in one place. In fact, a highlight of my time in St Lucia must be the people in general. The team at Coconut Bay are wonderfully friendly and welcoming, they really can't do enough for you. They make you feel a part of the family and excel in creating a truly special atmosphere.

So, don't delay. Find out more at https://cbayresort.com

Rates start from £527 a night on an all-inclusive basis, based on two people sharing a Deluxe Garden Splash or Deluxe Garden Harmony Room. There are direct flights with Virgin Atlantic or British Airways from London. Special rates are also available at https://cbayresort.com/specials-uk

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