The Roy­al­ton Takes Lux­ury Liv­ing Sev­eral Notches Higher!

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL - By Mae Wayne

On a re­cent site visit, by in­vi­ta­tion, to Roy­al­ton - former lo­ca­tion of Club Saint Lu­cia at Smug­glers Cove - I was drowned with mem­o­ries. You see this was the first ho­tel I stayed at when my then boyfriend was do­ing ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble to con­vince me to leave the City of An­gels and re­lo­cate to his is­land, Saint Lu­cia! In­cred­i­bly, that was thirty years ago!

I must ad­mit I was not too thrilled at the time with my now hus­band’s choice of ho­tels. To say the very least, Ho­tel Del Coronado it was not or the Bev­erly Wil­shire, my fa­vorite home away from home at the time. But this was the Caribbean and the magic and ro­mance was ev­ery­where. I de­cided to give up San Diego and move to sim­ply beau­ti­ful Saint Lu­cia— with no sense of what I was about to get into even as Rick Wayne’s girl­friend. The rest is pretty well known.

I was nat­u­rally cu­ri­ous when my friend An­dre Dhan­paul, the Roy­al­ton Gen­eral Man­ager, in­vited me to visit. So much was in the wind about the new re­sort, some won­der­ful, some, well, not too up­lift­ing. I called Liana Ven­turi (an­other old friend of the STAR) for di­rec­tions. With all the changes that re­port­edly had been made (some naysay­ers had as­sured me the whole char­ac­ter of Smug­glers Cove had been de­stroyed!) and know­ing my lousy sense of di­rec­tion, I didn’t want to find my­self lost.

What a trans­for­ma­tion! It brought to mind the Fon­tainebleau that had changed not only it­self from a run­down ho­tel but also the whole Mi­ami Beach am­bi­ence into pre­vi­ously unimag­ined splen­dor.

Club Saint Lu­cia, like the Fon­tainebleau, was bull­dozed. The new build­ings took just eigh­teen months to con­struct—a mir­a­cle by Saint Lu­cian stan­dards. By all ac­counts the new re­sort will be the largest ho­tel em­ployer on the is­land—900 staff in to­tal. Which is fan­tas­tic news for ev­ery­one!

The Roy­al­ton re­sem­bles noth­ing like we’ve seen be­fore in Saint Lu­cia. It’s big. To bor­row from the U.S. Pres­i­dent, it’s very big. Huge. The sur­round­ings re­mind of a small city. Think the most op­u­lent Las Ve­gas re­sort: 13 restau­rants and cafes, 24 bars and drink­ing ar­eas, and three dis­tinct sec­tions: a fam­i­lyfriendly va­ca­tion ex­pe­ri­ence with 349 rooms and suites in the gen­eral re­sort; an adult­sonly oa­sis with 104 lux­ury suites in the tran­quil Hide­away re­gion; Di­a­mond Club fea­tur­ing but­ler ser­vice and ex­clu­sive pool, beach and din­ing ar­eas. This place has ev­ery­thing!

If you choose the fam­ily sec­tion, rest as­sured there is ev­ery­thing kids would want. Up­grades to the Di­a­mond Club as­sure guests of never-end­ing pam­per­ing; the suites are mod­ern and lux­u­ri­ous with wel­com­ing lemon grass scents! To all of that add but­ler ser­vice. If deca­dent lux­ury is your dream, re­al­ize it at the Roy­al­ton. I think I’ve found at last my spe­cial re­treat from work. My Zen place!

I al­most for­got the ubiq­ui­tous pools! And the beach has been given a makeover with the whitest of sand. Even the rain is tak­ing a break to al­low work­ers to meet their sched­uled open­ing day on Fe­bru­ary 17. As for those naysay­ers who doubted the folks be­hind the one-of-a-kind re­sort could pos­si­bly fill its rooms, keep in mind it has its own air­line. So, Saint Lu­cia, are you ready for lux­ury on tap? The Roy­al­ton is open to res­i­dents. I can hardly wait for the of­fi­cial open­ing—a party not to be missed!

STAR Pub­lish­ing Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor Mae Wayne with Roy­al­ton Gen­eral Man­ager An­dre Dhan­paul.

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