By Codelia Mantsebo
Dubbed as ‘The Boutique Hotel for Couples’, Rendezvous is an idyllic beachfront boutique hotel for couples looking to reconnect in an intimate and tranquil setting in sensational St Lucia.
The all-inclusive resort offers luxury accommodation and a wide range of activities for the perfect romantic rendezvous. Couples can choose to stroll through the scented gardens under the palms, relax on the spectacular two mile beachfront, or explore undiscovered areas of St.Lucia and learn new skills together. So whether you choose to partake in a few cocktails by the swim-up pool at sunset, take on a diving expedition, join a cultural excursion or indulge in a spa treatment, Rendezvous can cater to every couple’s needs.
The resort is nestled in seven acres of gorgeous tropical gardens on the two-mile stretch of white sandy Malabar beach on St. Lucia’s north-west coast. Once a coconut estate, St Lucian planter Dennis Barnard built his family home on Malabar beach 50 years ago. The house was later extended to include 20 bedrooms for guests, before growing to become Rendezvous in 1993. It was extensively refurbished in 2009. Today, the Caribbean resort includes 100 rooms and suites varying in size, location and price. The resort was upgraded in November 2015.
Following the $12.5m renovation in 2015, the resort’s Seaside Suites and Verandah Suites received significant interior design updates as well as a brand-new swim-up pool bar. It also now hosts the new a la carte beachside “toes-in-the-sand” restaurant, Malabar Beach Club, with views overlooking the Caribbean Sea.
The recently refurbished rooms feature fine detailing complemented by traditional Caribbean style. Now the grandson of the founder Andrew Barnard describes the resort as “A Place of Stolen Time”, emphasizing that it’s a place where couples can escape and truly enjoy each other.
Elite Traveler was invited to fly to the Caribbean island of St. Lucia to stay at the Rendezvous Resort and celebrate the resort’s 50th anniversary. Arriving at Hewanorra Airport, we were whisked off to a helicopter pad, from which we were flown over the lush forests and crystal clear blue sea to Rendezvous in minutes. The alternative is a scenic 90-minute car journey driving through the St Lucian hillsides and winding roads.
Upon arrival, we were greeted with a welcome drink and a cold towel in the open air lobby/main Terrance bar which overlooks the beach. Elite Traveler was allocated to one of the newly refurbished Seaside Suites. Situated on the ground floor, we could walk directly from our room onto a private deck that overlooks the seaside pool, the Caribbean Sea and the gardens, while the newly furbished spacious Verandah suites overlooked the tropical gardens. As the focus here is on reconnecting with your partner, you won’t find a TV in your room.
Breakfast on the main terrace is a buffet of colorful fruit platters, freshly made omelettes or eggs, pastries and fry-ups. In the evening, guests can choose between testing out local Caribbean delicacies or going for internationally-inspired fine dining. Cocktails in any of the three bars or food from any of the three restaurants are made to perfection. The main Terrace bar overlooks the beach, while the pool bar has stools in the water so you can swim straight to your cocktail. The dedicated Champagne Bar is open from evening until the last guests decide to leave.
For the health-conscious, there’s a state-of-the-art gym, water-sports are offered daily and outdoor classes include yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, aqua aerobics and morning or sunset walks with a guide. The Spa in Water Garden is available for guest to relax and unwind with some of the most restorative therapies – from Swedish, Balinese and Thai massage to Hawaiian Lomi Lomi – as well as an array of pampering couples’ massage treatments made for two.
In addition to various activities offered to guests, we took a tour of the Sulphur Springs, the world’s only drive-in volcano, and took a steaming mud bath in natural springs. We also received a guided tour to the majestic twin mountain peaks, ‘The Pitons’, the most-popular tourist attraction, at 2,530 ft and 2,438 ft high respectively. We reached the top of the ‘Stairway to Heaven’ for spectacular views.
Elite Traveler joined Rendzvous’ staff and guests, alongside St Lucia’s Tourism Minister Dominic Fedee on Saturday evening to celebrate Rendezvous Resort’s 50th year of existence in St. Lucia. Celebrating Rendezvous’ 50th anniversary, fireworks dazzled the night sky while we were served special edition champagne.
To celebrate its 50th anniversary, Rendezvous has launched a new initiative, ‘Summer Tryst’, to encourage couples to reconnect and spend more quality time together. Guests staying at the resort during the summer months, from July to September, will be able to take advantage of ‘Summer Tryst’. This includes a range of complimentary classes such as wine tasting, rum tasting, art classes, Yoga and Pilates classes, massage classes and cooking classes.
Rendezvous will also offer supplementary photography classes with a scenic tour, a rum distillery tour, a cocoa plantation tour and chocolate making experience, marine park dives in the Caribbean Sea, local chef ‘cook-off’ dinner and wine pairing, as well as private couples sessions in Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, massage and sailing.
Day trips will also be available to Sulphur Springs, and The Pitons. Couples will be able to pre-book activities online, ahead of their stay.
The package will also feature local events and festivals, such as Steel Pan Classes, a Panaroma Show Carnival Parade and Carnival Parade Viewing in July, as well as La Rose Flower Festival Parade in August.
Rates at Rendezvous over summer start from £258 per person, per night, all inclusive. For further information visit: www.theromanticholiday.com. Rendezvous is the sister resort to leading health and wellness resort, The BodyHoliday, which is also located in the North West of the Caribbean island of St.Lucia.