Mid-week, we hopped in a taxi and enjoyed every minute of our commute to our second resort. We took one road from the bottom of St. Lucia to the north end and traveled next to the Caribbean coast the entire time. Two hours later, we were at Sandals Grande St. Lucian!
I didn't take near as many photos at Sandals as I did at Jade Mountain. The views weren't quite as spectacular, but we had such a fun time in a completely different way than we did at JM.
I'll be honest, Jade Mountain is AMAZING. Literally dreamy. BUT it was very, very quiet. We loved the time we had together with no distractions, but after three (somewhat repetitive) days and nights, we were ready to listen to tropical music poolside, be around other couples, and have a little entertainment. We figured that would be the case, which is why we planned half of our week at Jade Mountain and the other half at Sandals. We wanted the best of both worlds. Jade Mountain is on the south end of St. Lucia. The town there lives by the slogan, "max chill" (that's what the locals say!). Sandals is in the capital of St. Lucia, so it has a much more lively atmosphere.
(Splendid High/Low Skirt, top and necklace from local boutique)
The resort's decor was beautiful!
Brandon and I stayed in the William Jefferson Clinton Suite, which is almost triple the size of where we live now! It had two bedrooms, a huge den/dining area/kitchen, a porch that overlooks the Caribbean Ocean, a back porch that overlooks the Atlantic Ocean, three bathrooms, and an outdoor shower/roof opening area. We loved it!
Fully stocked bar...
The second bedroom:
View of the Atlantic Ocean from the master bedroom deck:
Other side of shower...
View from the roof viewing area!
We spent a LOT of time on the beach and in the pool since we really didn't do much of that at Jade Mountain (aside from our in-room pool!)
Brandon's authentic Cuban cigar...
There were great restaurants at Sandals. We loved this little pizza place for lunch.
The hut on the water is the resort's fine dining restaurant, Gordons, where we ate one night. On the hill is Pigeon Island ...you can see a fort at the top (Ft. Rodney) where the French and the British fought fourteen times!
Not a bad taxi ride!
We took a helicopter from the resort to the airport... the 15 minutes in the air saved us a two hour car ride!
There's Jade Mountain (on the little point in the upper middle)
In between the two Pitons (above) is a resort called Sugar Beach. Matt Damon recently rented out the whole resort to renew his vows with his wife. He had about 50 guests including George Clooney, Brad and Angie, Emily Blunt, Ben Affleck & Jennifer Garner, etc.
My thoughts on the two resorts...
Jade Mountain and Sandals are COMPLETELY different. We would've gotten "cabin fever" at Jade Mountain for an entire week. At the same rate, we would've gotten tired of drinking fruity drinks in the pool everyday at Sandals for a whole week. That's why I'm glad we split it up. It was nice to have a change of scenery.
But with a change of scenery came a bit of a shock, as well. Obviously the level of luxury at Jade far surpasses what we saw at Sandals, I mean... it's the third top resort in the world. I'll be perfectly honest, within the first 45 minutes at Sandals, we called Jade Mountain to see if we could go back! We were ready to jump in the car for another two hours to return, but there weren't any availabilities. It really was just a culture shock that we experienced. We went from dead silence at Jade to TONS of young couples, music, and dancing. Not that we are against any of those things, we just had gotten used to the solitude, I guess. We felt that we left our honeymoon and were now on any old vacation. As it turned out, we had such a fun time at Sandals and I completely appreciate the two resorts for very different reasons.
We had private butlers at both resorts, but the service was much better at Jade Mountain. They literally waited on our hands and feet, almost making it uncomfortable at times. The food was better at Jade Mountain ...and MUCH more healthy, but the selection was 50 times greater at Sandals. Our room had a better view at Jade, but our room was double the size at Sandals. Jade Mountain is a good place to go if you want to live in luxury while completely alone with your other half, or if you are in desperate need of peacefulness. It's a place to unplug from the phones and computers ...no alarm clocks, no tvs, no music or entertainment. Sandals is a place to be if you're looking for pool/beachside entertainment, lots of food and if you're wanting to be around a lot of friendly faces.
We had excursions planned at Jade Mountain, but honestly, we loved our room so much, we hated to leave it! Plus, we had just gotten finished with the wedding, so we wanted to sit around and relax. Other than the volcano tour, that's exactly what we did. We even canceled our afternoon sailing/snorkeling trip to just walk around the many bridges and stairways of the resort. At Sandals, there is so much to do that it's really not necessary to leave. Had we been there for a whole week, we would have definitely gone on some excursions to break the repetitiveness.
Overall, we had an amazing honeymoon and I would whole-heartedly recommend both resorts to all of you. St. Lucia is a beautiful place. It encompassed exactly what Brandon and I wanted to see... rain forest and beach. The natives of the island were incredibly friendly and welcoming.
Now I've just got to convince Brandon to take me back for our one-year anniversary... ;)