In February, my husband and I along with our daughter went on a group trip, with 8 other friends, to the Bananaquit House in St. Lucia. You are probably wondering why our son didn’t come. Well, when the trip was originally booked it was supposed to be a kids free trip but knowing that we were expecting we couldn’t agree to go unless we brought baby girl along. Lucky for us, we have amazing friends and they all agreed to let us bring our 6-month-old (thank you guys xo). Don’t worry though. Our son was happy to spend the week with his Mimi and Papi (my in-laws) and have them all to himself.
I am usually much more humble than this but I think that we stayed in the most breathtaking accommodations with the most spectacular view of the island’s pitons. The Bananaquit House was the very definition of luxury. We owe our stay/accommodations to our friends George and Chelsea who, once again, made this trip possible for the group. The villa had 7 bedrooms, a panoramic view of the ocean and pitons, 4 full-time staff, and a 36-foot infinity pool. It was heaven on earth.
At the time of our departure, my mom was still in the hospital since she had just had her debulking surgery (following her ovarian cancer diagnosis). I was going to cancel the trip but she and urged me to go, get some rest (since I had been spending my days with the kids and evenings/nights at the hospital) and come back re-energized and ready to tackle the rest of her recovery/treatments. My gut was telling me to stay but I listened to mom and, before leaving, made sure that there were flights home available while we were there just in case I needed to return home. The good news is that I was able to speak with mom daily, which eased my guilt about being away, and that she did ok while I was gone. Luckily she had my sister with her and she took amazing care of her.
So, we packed our things last minute, boarded the flight to St. Lucia and I’m happy that we did. Before leaving I was SO overwhelmed with fear, sadness, and anxiety. I literally felt as though I couldn’t breathe. People often talk about feeling anxious but I could never relate. Until now. I was running between home and the hospital and felt guilty when I wasn’t at one or the other and trying to understand and cope with mom’s diagnosis. I was literally working on fumes. This trip allowed me to slow down, breathe and return home better equipped to tackle the road ahead.
Looking back at the trip, I think that St. Lucia may be one of the most beautiful spots that I will ever see in my life. We spent a week in our beautiful villa and the staff were incredible! The women that worked there were unbelievably kind and made the most amazing meals. We happened to have been there on Valentine’s Day and they made a special meal for those of us who didn’t go out for dinner. They also made us awesome snacks for us when we had beach days. Their crab cakes were insane!
Our days were spent enjoying the beautiful views that our villa had to offer, going on walks, eating good food, sipping on cocktails and relaxing.
Some other highlights of the trip are as follow:
- The “famous” Anse Chastenet beach: was about a 20-minute walk from our villa so we visited it on a few occasions. The walk to the beach was hilly but fun 🙂 and the beach was breathtaking and well worth the walk. There happened to be a fabulous restaurant on the beach that made the best hamburgers I have EVER eaten in my 32 years of existence. I believe the restaurant is owned by the Jade Mountain hotel. If you ever go to this beach, “you gotta eat here.”
- Jalousie beach: was is insane. We took a boat over to this beach and spent the afternoon and it was 100% worth it. The views were breath-taking and almost unbelievable. I am so grateful to have been able to spend just a few hours here. The beach was white as white (although we later found out that the sand is shipped in) and the water couldn’t have been clearer. There were a few stunning sailboats that were docked and it was a relatively quiet beach. It is also the location of the famous Sugar Beach resort. Once we arrived, we parked ourselves on the beach, enjoyed a couple cocktails and sucked in the views while we could.
- Dashene restaurant and bar: there were two dinners planned outside of the villa. I wasn’t able to make one of them, however, my daughter and I were able to make the first night out to the Dashene restaurant. The restaurant was part of the Ladera resort, a luxury resort in Soufriere, located on a volcano ridgeline which is also a UNESCO world heritage site. The evening views of the pitons were once again stunning. From what I understand, the restaurant’s chef used local ingredients to prepare his meals and his dishes were to die for. I highly recommend this restaurant if you’re looking to eat out while in Soufriere, Dashene is a must.
Overall, this trip was stunning and exceptionally planned by our friends. A HUGE thank you to them for this trip and for making it possible for all of us. For those thinking about traveling to St. Lucia I say “just do it.” You only get to live once so take advantage of the opportunities that arise.