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“Stunning scenery/property; value did not meet expectations” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Ladera Resort

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Ladera Resort
Ranked #2 of 11 Hotels in Soufriere
Certificate of Excellence
New York City, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Stunning scenery/property; value did not meet expectations”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 November 2012

My wife and I arrived at Ladera for the last spot on our honeymoon (we previously traveled to Dominica for 3 nights and then to Cap Maison in St. Lucia, as part of the Peak-to-Beach package, which we did backwards). We were greeted by several friendly people, including one of the owners, which was pretty cool. She was very nice and, looking back now, was a bit too excited about the room we were getting (she must do this for everyone). We immediately mentioned we were interested in the cooking class and she mentioned another couple was interested, and we just needed one more and she'd work on getting that done. We never heard about it again. This was a recurring theme.

First off, let me say I really wanted to love this place. I thought it'd be the most special and beautiful visit on our honeymoon. The natural elements of it were indeed that special. The grounds and the rooms are as stunning as the view of the pitons. It's a magical place and the harmony between the landscaping, gardens, and stonework in the rooms is really something else. The stone and floor design of each unique room compliments the shapes of the mountains and nature around them. It's an awesome feat to build such a place and put so much care into it. Charming.

Perhaps the most genuine and charming person there was Ray, the Ladera gardener. I highly recommend you take the FREE garden tour that is offered most days around 2:30pm. Spending time and learning about plants and gardening from Ray was a treat, and was rather inspiring. He cares so much about what he does there and he cares about your questions too.

I've read other reviews and it's true, if you do the all-inclusive deal, they are really bad about restocking your fridge with beers and waters. Yes, those not doing the all-inclusive are not entitled to having their fridges re-stocked each day (this was always the reason told to us), but it says it in writing, on the welcome letter that you receive upon check-in. I had to ask 5 times over a 2-day span before we got beers and water in the fridge. Not a HUGE deal, b/c you can just as easily walk to the bar and get beers to go, but they WANT you to do this so you sign off on a bill that essentially pays tips and service charges...(don't worry, you as a guest are not paying extra or anything) kind of annoying though based on the high price to stay there. Perhaps I should have really complained right away about this matter, but I hate being that guy...

On our second night there, prior to dinner, we were unexpected hosts of a huge critter party in our room. We first noticed the ants on our couch (lots of them, and we hadn't left any food out or anything). My wife relocated to the netted bed, but mosquitoes were everywhere. I sprayed some of the (supplied) bug spray, but had little success. Then I noticed about 4 to 6 little frogs had made there way in, chirping and bouncing about. And then the bat came in...and kept coming in. We finally called reception and they came right away and switched us to a room right next door. Didn't sleep to well that night, but they did put us in a room where the bedroom was more blocked off. I get it - it's nature - and we knew what we were getting into with an open room and all, but this was pretty crazy.

Def. go to the beach below - it's very nice. Lots to do there if you want, or nothing.. make sure you sign up for the free bus to and fro, though be warned it may not matter. We showed up ten minutes early for our return trip and it never came (they said it did, but we surely would have seen it...or the driver could have at least let us know)...they sent a driver who came 40 minutes later. Point is, that really messed up our day b/c we had scheduled a late room service lunch prior to a late afternoon spa treatment. The bus being late screwed up our lunch and they had to redo it and that was super late and we barely made the spa appointment. We had to make calls and rearrange things so much, it kind of felt like being at work. A bit of a lost afternoon, but the spa treatment was really wonderful. Good spa there. Nice food overall, too, but seemed crazy pricey if you're not on the all-inclusive plan.

On our last morning, we ran into the owner again and she assured us (twice) that she'd be sending down drink service to the pool (where we said we'd be relaxing until the trip to the airport). That service came - about an hour and a half after we were there and that was it. It certainly didn't make the morning less relaxing, but it was just another unfulfilled promise. There are definitely communication issues here....

What I LIKED about the staff was how much fun they were having and they were genuinely nice to everyone there. It was a great vibe. What I didn't like was that we felt we had to constantly remind or ask people the same things over and over again - there was a severe communication problem - and perhaps it started at the top - why make lofty promises to guests in the first place? This is not what a vacation at an expensive resort should be. The kicker in the end was we were given a nice little going away present upon departure - two fruit muffins and a calendar. Well, we opened up the calendar and quickly realized all the months were wrong and out of order, some months missing, some repeating. It kind of summed things up - how did nobody catch that?

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank jr s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Shermael C, Guest Relations Manager at Ladera Resort, responded to this review, 29 November 2012
We are glad that you enjoyed our property during your recent visit in St. Lucia, especially the spa and the cuisine. We will make sure to share your kind comments with Ray our gardener. We appreciate your observations regarding the all inclusive package and have taken appropriate action. We understand that there was a misprint with some of our calendars and are having them re-printed. We welcome your feedback and are happy to hear that you think of Ladera as a “magical place.”
Shermael
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,206 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (315)
Date | Rating
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English first
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 November 2012 via mobile

Probably the best vacation my wife and I have ever had together..... Rooms are soooo unique and private, even with the openness , you can carry on, swim in your plunge pool with just your birthday suit .... Food was good. May need a few more items on the menu to order to your room like pizza or chicken casadias type of food.... The beach below is the best for hanging out and sunning.... Rentals of sailboats, floating stuff is great. Also great bar and restaurant at the beach too... Easy food and a few steps away from the sand. Just a great romantic time....best ever. Staff is so friendly , they knew us by name the 2nd day we were there...... Just awesome.....

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank RexC2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 November 2012

We splurged and stayed at Ladera the last night of our honeymoon. It was everything we dreamed of. Initially we were booked in Unit U with wide open view, private splunge pool, they had champagne and fruit waiting for us. When we got back from the hot springs and were getting ready for dinner there were alot of bats and bugs flying into the room. I was sitting underneath my netting on my bed so my husband went and asked what they usually do for bats. They immediately apologized and said they dont usually go into the rooms and they gave us a free upgrade to Unit A1 which had 3 levels, the bedroom was off in the back away from bugs/bats. We had an even larger pool and amazing view, wish we could have stayed there the entire honeymoon! Also, food at the resort was delicious and everyone was very nice and accomodating.

Room Tip: A1 beautiful view, large plunge pool
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank mosky211
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Port Chester NY
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 November 2012

My wife and I honeymooned at both Cap Maison & Ladera using the "Peak to Beach" package that is offered between both hotels, except we went to Cap Maison first as opposed to Ladera. Upon our arrival, we were greeted with "Ladera punch" and a courteous staff (staff remained very good for the 3 days we stayed here). We were led to our room, "M," which was quite small compared to the photos used on Ladera's website. Despite that, my wife and I really aren't the type to complain, and were taken back by the amazing view that Ladera is known for. The first thing that caught me by surprise was the amount of noise - especially for a place that emphasizes the "welcome home" & relaxation gimmick. The maintenance shed was right outside and all we heard was sawing, hammering & banging noises, accompanied by the constant whiz of a golf cart behind the room (golf cart noise was constant throughout our stay). The in-room safe also did not work - so my wife and I went to reception to kindly ask when the construction noises would stop and if someone could assist us with the safe. The staff obliged by offering us the 2-bedroom room "F" which was absolutely amazing, with a giant pool and even better view, 2 floors, large couch and 2 bathrooms. We were stunned with the upgrade as my wife and I only expected some help with the safe in room "M."

We settled in to our room and realized that the "mini bar" that Ladera boasts so much contains no alcohol. We had an all inclusive plan which included a "fully stocked mini bar replenished daily" so we were sort of surprised when it only contained a few soda's and 2 large bottles of water. Dont get me wrong, it was still nice to have drinks on hand. They do allow you to go to the bar, order 4 bottles of Piton (the local beer) which they'll gladly put into a bag for you to carry back to your room. Sounds a bit trashy, but these rooms really do beg to be stayed in during the day and its nice to have a few drinks in the fridge.

Back to the noise. When night falls at Ladera, be VERY prepared to be a bit overwhelmed. If you are uncomfortable with free-reign lizards, giant moths, toads, or are not used to real-camping then DO NOT stay here, flat out - just dont. I thought I was prepared, but even I'll admit that I was surprised by the amount (and size) of the lizards that live in each room...however you will learn that they are your friends, and that they just want to eat the bugs that bother you. Once you get over the initial shock, Ladera becomes a bit more comfortable. It's kind of tough to relax at night due to the shear amount of noise coming from nature...mixed with the golf cart.

At times the staff was very loud outside of our room. The back of room "F" shares a wall with some sort of resort-office where the staff was very noisy in the morning. Also one morning, we awoke at 8 am to a man walking & hammering on our roof. I couldn't believe that the hotel would order a maintenance worker to do roof-work so early in the morning knowing there was someone trying to sleep below. It was things like these that made us double think about the price of the room per night.

The bugs really weren't that much of an issue, giant cans of bug killer are provided in each room along with mosquito coils that honestly do a fine job of taking care of any pesky bugs flying around you. Don't leave a light on that doesnt need to be on, just be smart about it and you'll be fine as far as bugs go. No giant spiders were spotted, just huge colorful moths, lizards, toads, and a few stinging insects that pretty much ignore you. Again, just be smart - let the lizards do what they do.

The restaurant at Ladera, Dasheene, is very expensive, however we had our meals included and only had to pay a few supplemental costs on the pricier dishes. I must say the lunch and dinner meals were wonderful - very fresh tasting and different. We found ourselves trying lots of new things and enjoying them, too. I was surprised to see the famous St. Lucian rum punch was pre-mixed and poured from a jug. I had read that Ladera prides themselves on their rum punches, yet I saw the jug that the bartender pulled from the cooler that clearly read "rum punch." The place has a huge wine list and a nice cocktail menu as well. We had drinks & snacks each evening during sunset which really capped off the day nicely...and prepared you for the night (4 Piton's to go, please).

St Lucia overall, is expensive. We ziplined at "Hotwire" (awesome) and did the "Soufriere experience" which was a tour of the local mineral baths & botanical gardens (really cool), mud baths & volcano, and a couple of water falls that were a bit underwhelming. The best time to do these things is after 1:30 PM on Saturday, as the cruise-ship crowds will have already gone. These excursions are all at an additional cost, and tips are expected vocally by most.

The beach is a bit odd, as you take a 10-12 min free shuttle to Jalousie Plantation and are herded to the "free side" (or be forced to pay US$20 for a padded lounge chair) where you will be met with stereotypical tourists ferried in via water taxi from the cruise ships. My wife and I found this pretty funny as we try to blend in/not look like a tourist as much as possible whenever we travel. Snorkeling at the Jalousie beach is incredible, I really enjoyed it.

Overall, you cant deny that Ladera is an incredible spectacle, but I must say that I wasn't expecting such a noisy place. It's just hard to relax here, which is kind of unfortunate, because once you fully drink in the view, Ladera lacks a bit. Will we visit St. Lucia again? Yes, absolutely, but we will stay at Cap Maison instead.

Room Tip: The first room they gave us was room "M," but after complaining about construction noise...
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Stank S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Shermael C, Guest Relations Manager at Ladera Resort, responded to this review, 17 November 2012
Thank you for visiting Ladera and sharing your comments with us. We are glad to know that you enjoyed our Dasheene restaurant and that our friendly staff enhanced your experience. We are sorry to hear about the noise outside your suite and have thus far investigated and addressed the issue with our maintenance team. For the benefit of clarification, our rum punch is freshly made every day at the bar and is kept chilled in the cooler. Our all inclusive guests also have their mini-bars replenished daily with piton beers. Once again we thank you for your feedback.
Shermael
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rio de Janeiro, RJ
Level Contributor
79 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 November 2012

Pros: All rooms have a cinematographic/indescribable pitons/ocean view. The staff is so courteous and helpful. Complimentary drinks and breakfast is great. The rooms are off the chart: pools with ocean view, enormous, great couch, enormous bed and an amazing bathroom with an open air shower. They pay great attention to small details like having binoculars to watch the stars! The room comes with a manual to better enjoy the stay with all the helpful information one might need, what a great great idea.. I got in at around midnight and a fish and salad was waiting for me with the night guard. The infinity pool in the common area has a breathtaking view.

Cons: No one in the reception at night, we were greeted by the night guard so I actually had to carry some of my luggage to the room. The resort is big so maybe some bikes would be great to get around inside from the rooms to the common areas. Since the room is wide open to the nature hummingbirds will wake you up at like 6 am. If you're into nightlife/etc this is not the place for you, it is remote and isolated. It is an approximate 90 minute drive from the airport (SLU). The restaurant is crazy expensive, over US$ 100 p/ person (a good alternative is ordering the small bites from the bar or going across the street to the restaurant in le chocolat hotel).

Room Tip: All the rooms are amazing you can't go wrong, but if you can choose, try to choose one closer to...
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  • Stayed November 2012, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank pedossantos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 November 2012

Really a gorgeous, unique setting in the rain forest, beside the Piton Mts. and overlooking the Caribbean. My wife and I got "Ladera fever" and simply relaxed in our suite with its own private pool. Fabulous French-Creole cuisine from Mark Tan and the staff is so attentive and good-natured. We stayed 10 days and got to know many - Wonderful elegant servers, bar tenders and front-desk people: Isha, Al, Cynthia, Jennifer (smoothies & cocktails), Kishmer, Elizabeth, Melissa, and so many thanks to Neilbert who can do everything. Karim, the new sommelier from France, Hilka the electricity man; Lee who kept making sure we had everything and more. An operations man named Eustace is building new dream-suites with bamboo scaffolding - no big machinery on this delicate ridge. Amazing.

Room Tip: new "dream suites" opening in Feb, private pools, awesome views
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank JP F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 October 2012

So different from anything or anywhere we've ever stayed before. I simply could not get over the view from out of our suite! It is breathtaking as so many have described it. And it just doesn't get any more romantic. It is a must stay when going to St Lucia, we loved it! Three points you should know....1) Dasheene is wonderful and the food is very good, but pricey. Boucan across the street at Hotel Chocolat is also a must. 2) There is a fifteen minute ride down to a great beach, but as others have pointed out, you get the back row beach chairs even though you pay for them. It's ok and still worth the trip down, just expect it and don't get irritated as I initially did. 3) Avoid the "fish fry" at Anse La Raye -- Ugh! I won't beat it up as the locals are very proud, but I wish I didn't go.

Room Tip: If a suite is not in the budget, A1 is really nice!
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MariettaMax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ladera Resort

Property: Ladera Resort
Address: Rabot Estate, Soufriere, St. Lucia
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > St. Lucia > Soufriere Quarter > Soufriere
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Soufriere
#1 Spa Hotel in Soufriere
#2 Luxury Hotel in Soufriere
#3 Family Hotel in Soufriere
#7 Romantic Hotel in Soufriere
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Ladera Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ladera is the pioneer of the open air three-walled concept in St. Lucia and has since been distinguished by a wide range of international publications, awards and accolades from Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, Forbes Life Caribbean Travel and Life, Brides Magazine and countless others. Ladera was once part of Rabot Estate, one of Soufriere's oldest plantations, which still borders the resort. In the late 1960's a parcel of land was sold and developed into a small cluster of condominiums and christened Dasheene, named after the thousands of large, glossy-leafed dasheen plants (also known as elephant ears) harvested on the site. In 1982 it was transformed into a unique resort and changed hands a number of times before emerging as Ladera under the current private ownership. The mission has always been to offer an unparalleled guest experience that is quintessentially Saint Lucian, one that embraces the magnificent views and offers harmony with the surrounding natural beauty and rich bounty of the island. Today, that commitment to sumptuous authenticity is evident in everything from the innovative renderings of fresh local dishes at Dasheene restaurant, to the use of Caribbean timbers, stone and tile work used in the guestrooms and public areas. Yet it shines through most effectively with warm and welcoming Saint Lucian staff. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ladera Hotel Soufrière
Ladera Resort Soufrière
Ladera St Lucia
Ladera Resort St. Lucia/Soufriere

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