We just got back from our honeymoon at Sandals Grande and as promised here are my thoughts (I’ll try to be unbiased):
Room: We had a mid-level honeymoon suite which was a nice room but we were honestly underwhelmed upon first arrival (basically because the room we had in the Outer Banks for the wedding was literally the size of our apartment). Our room overlooked the Atlantic Ocean so we didn’t have pool or beach view of the Caribbean as the other side of the building did, but it was still waterfront. We had a balcony, seating area, king bed and then the bathroom with double sinks. There was also a “mini bar” which stocked water, soda and juice that was refilled daily and complimentary.
Beach & pools: The water was so clear and you could see everything, although my husband was disapointed he didn’t see more fish. The beach itself was nice and relaxing, but the water was VERY salty. We also enjoyed the pools located between the hotel buildings and not the main pool. There was hardly anyone in them and it was nice just to enjoy it to ourselves. The main pool w/ bar had more of a spring break feel and that just isn’t us. But if you like that sort of thing, it’s definetly the place to hang out.
Entertainment: There were some special activities daily and a larger event every night which was nice because you can only spend so much time out in the sun. We enjoyed things like a beach bbq bash with limbo and fire dancers, a street fair, a chocolate buffet thing, among other activities. They also offered games like ping pong, volley ball and shuffle board (if you did so many you got free leather flip flops which one couple informed us were just key chains). They also had movies and a night club and pub.
Staff: The staff was super friendly and very helpful. They would literally get you anything and it was nice not having to worry about tipping anyone since they have a strict no tipping policy. We neglected to make reservations for dinner as soon as we got there and they were able to fit us in at one of the resturants (Jasmine’s which was asain family style) before we left which we were happy about.
Tour: I highly suggest doing some sort of tour. You have to pay extra for them but very worth it because otherwise you wouldn’t get to see St Lucia. We did the Land and Sea tour which was nice (the sea part was much better than the land tour). My husband also did the zip-lining. I would suggest also doing this but only if you both go. He had to go alone since I’m pregnant and was the only person by themselves! The tour guide said that that has NEVER happened before. It was awkward for me to be at the resort for 5 hours by myself surrounded by honeymooners 🙂 We also went to Pigeon Island which you just walk off the resort to get to and only costs $5 to get in. The view was worth the hike!
Watersports: We did not do any of the watersports offered at the resort, but we did rent wave runners and went parasailing which was set up right at the watersports office. This was something we always wanted to do and the prices were comparable to back home, plus the view from above was amazing!
Food: This is by far the most disappointing part to us. We HATED the food to be completely honest. I’ve been out of the country before (Costa Rica, Bermuda, Ecuador, Galapagos, British Isles) and I was hoping for food similar to most of these places as I’ve always loved it. Instead the food reminded me of ordering rice and beans back home and the restaurant tries to pass it off as authentic. We literally lived off of mostly fruit and are now having a hard time adjusting to real food. My husband actually got sick after every meal (and I’m the one with the weak stomach). I would suggest getting reservations to Gordans (if you don’t have butler service it costs extra, which I heard is like a $300 meal, but we won a dinner for two at the managers cocktail party). This was the BEST food we had all week! AMAZING! You could basically get any drink you wanted as well. I was drinking virgin drinks, but my husband found a new love with BBC…it’s bailey’s, banana and coconut water. He said it was so good and light (he’s not a big drinker either).
Overall we had a good time. Our initial impression was not good but again that was because of the trip we just had during the wedding. After the first night we became impressed with all the resort had to offer. The room itself was just like any other hotel room (for the level we booked) and the food was a disappointment but otherwise we enjoyed our trip.
My last tip of advice and I highly suggest you take this to heart: If you have ANY sort of motion sickness PLEASE get/take something when in the car. OMG the roads are 100% S-turns 100% of the time. I got sick on EVERY car ride, couldn’t take anything due to the pregnancy and had to have the driver stop on the way to the airport. It was a huge embarresment lol. By the way, the trip from the main airport to the hotel is a 1.5 hour torture ride or so the hotel manager put it that way.
If you have any other questions or I left anything out feel free to PM me.