The Sandals Halcyon in St. Lucia: A Honeymoon Review

Are you ready to get up the morning after your wedding and spend 14 hours traveling by car, plane, & bus??? If so, this honeymoon is for you!

All jokes aside, husband & I had an incredible time in St. Lucia. This was the honeymoon we signed up for. No pretense, no frills, no schedule (unless we wanted it), and PLENTY of time by the pools & beaches. This. was. paradise! Our main qualm about our hotel was the beach. To be honest, it frankly looked no different than a Texas beach. You may think I’m exaggerating, but you’ll have to fly the 9 hours to go see for yourself. Before I go further into that, let’s start from the beginning…

We woke up the morning after our wedding frankly feeling um, ahem – HUNGOVER. We had quite the party and celebration and it was EVERYTHING we’d ever wanted it to be. With that said, we were SO GLAD we were leaving for our honeymoon the NEXT day. I cannot imagine having to leave for our honeymoon the morning after our wedding. We instead got to take our time getting out of our bed, have a relaxing day, and gear up for the next travel day ahead!

The next morning, on Monday at 3 AM our alarm clock awoke us with fright and anxiousness and excitement! Our first trip together as husband & wife! We made it in time for our flight to Miami at 5AM from DFW. Thank goodness Starbucks was open that early…from Miami, we had a QUICK layover before we boarded our plane to St. Lucia. We thought it would be a fun idea to get one of those airport massages, and before you know it our plane was boarding! We had to run to the gate! We boarded our plane to St. Lucia, and guess what was on the ground in front of us? A CONDOM WRAPPER. Unopened, but still. Someone was ready to party. Our flight to St. Lucia made us both a little anxious because it was basically all over water. On the flip side though, the flight was BEAUTIFUL! That flight took about 4 hours. So, all in, you’re on a plane for about 7 hours with no delays.

Airport
Look at us – so sleepy & innocent, 36 hours into marriage!

We finally arrive in St. Lucia at their teensy tiny airport. If Warner Brothers is looking for their next idea for a romantic comedy, THIS SIGHT AT THE AIRPORT IS IT. Everyone, and I mean everyone, is honeymooners or is on some sort of anniversary trip. My bridezilla came out once again (let’s call her Sherry) when I noticed that so many brides got married on my SAME wedding day! How could they?? Didn’t they get the hint -that was My Day?! We also stuck out like a sore thumb because we decided to dress as individuals that day. Do you know what I saw before me? Thousands upon thousands of dollars from Etsy shops surrounded us, with shirts in white, black (even pink!) that said “Hubby/wifey,” “Husband/wife,” or some other “cute” saying. I knew husband would have thrown up if I’d given that to him, so I decided to save myself another $100 (as if I had $100 after this wedding) by not purchasing the “Honeymooners at the Airport” uniform.

We finally made it through customs and collected our luggage (YAY it made it!) when we were escorted to the “Sandals section” of the airport. Yes – Sandals Vacations has their OWN waiting area at the St. Lucia airport. From there, after your long travel day you are greeted by what you believe is the same voice from the Titanic: “HUSBANDS, THIS WAY. WIVES, STAY IN THIS LINE.” You whisper, “Goodbye, I’ll always love you” as they take your husband away to someone who has “THE LIST.” THE LIST confirms you indeed have a reservation 3893749 miles away from home for a honeymoon, and they confirm which hotel you’re going to (there are 3 Sandals hotels in St. Lucia, by the way). Let’s think about this pickle for a sec: what if your name WASN’T on the list??? Where would you go? Would they ship you back in a container?? How AWFUL would that be?? Anyways – husband came back and my faith was restored. We received hot bottles of water and were offered their local beer, as well as some chips. It was a cool set up, but there were just SO MANY WARM BODIES IN ONE ENCLOSED WARM SPACE. Can you imagine?? THAT’S the new Sci-Fi novel idea after #corona.

After what seemed like an eternity of waiting, we boarded our 1950s bus or, shall I say, raided it for a seat since there were not enough seats for everyone. (Oops.) Our driver then proceeded to tell us we were an hour and a half away from the airport. Did you hear that? AN HOUR AND A HALF AWAY. Husband began a panic attack and I began the timer on my phone to really see how far away this was (yes – that is the Enneagram 1 + “the Karen” in me). The brother wasn’t lying. We really were far away. You see, the teensy tiny HUGE MASSIVE OMG WHO ARE PEOPLE KIDDING detail that they don’t tell you about St. Lucia is this: there is one highway. One highway around the entire island. While a beautiful view, it is not convenient nor pleasant, as the road is not paved well and chickens (AND PEOPLE) cross the road at the MOST inopportune times. True story: our driver was MILLISECONDS away from killing someone who ran out in front of our bus that day. Do you know what he did while all of us sheltered, bubbled Americans shrieked, made the sign of the Cross, yelled, & cried?? He honked. He honked and said a few cuss words. And that, my friends, is why the St. Lucians have swagger.

About an eternity later, we arrived at the Halcyon! You will see why they call it “A True Garden of Eden.” Immediately, the staff was SO NICE. That’s what I’ll always remember about St. Lucia: the people’s generosity, kindness, and hospitality. I will admit a big 1st world problem here: Logan and I were exhausted and had naively thought we’d arrive at our hotel in the afternoon or late afternoon. We got there around 5 or 6 PM. So, if you’re booking a trip there, prepare to lose a day for travel. We were whisked off to an office (which I hated) where they try to sell you on some different excursions or Sandals offers, and husband politely but curtly told them we were tired and would think about it later. (That was really hot.) (;

From there, we met our butler (huge waste of $$$) and he showed us to our room, which was INCREDIBLE!!! We had our own little tiny pool and an outdoor breakfast nook area. We mainly picked our hotel for this spot and we have no regrets. It was SO quiet and we felt like we were in a little cottage. From the calming turquoise color to the daily short rain showers to hearing the ocean every day, it truly was paradise. The greenery there was STUNNING. The gardens were incredible and the grounds were immaculate. Did I mention how quiet it was? It was so peaceful!

 

1st night honeymoon
Our 1st dinner that night – a buffet and drinks out by the ocean!

The food: To be honest, it was very Americanized. We did have some very good meals, but sometimes the food, ESPECIALLY the seafood (??) didn’t taste the most fresh. The hotel is more expensive than most because it’s an all-inclusive. When you get to your room, there is a selection of Mondavi wines to choose from. Interesting choice, but “free” wine. (: We did discover a new drink that the bartenders made for us almost every morning!! It was called a Hummingbird. Here’s a recipe; you’re gonna love it!! I’m going to try it with almond milk…let’s see if it’s still good.

Daiquiri
Just a mid morning daiquiri! I probably had tea with the Brits after this. Yes – we met so many people from the UK! Many told us to go to Barbados next. Apparently it’s the best place they’ve ever been!
Shelby & book
I actually ended up leaving this book here for a future guest. By the main pool sat a little library for guests. (: I wrote a note in it & hoped it would meet someone in the perfect time! This was by far one of THE funniest books I’ve ever read! “You’ll Grow Out of It” by Jessi Klein             Swimsuit: Everything but Water

The Butler: Okay, I get it. You’re planning your honeymoon and you want to go “all out”. But, it’s just not worth it. We had one main butler throughout our stay, but sometimes had fill ins who weren’t as nice. Again, very much a 1st world problem here, but sometimes we were so ready to go to the beach or the pool, but then you had to call your butler and tell them you were ready to go, which then proceeded in waiting 30 minutes so they could go put swans made out of towels on your chairs. There were very nice touches and great hospitality, but I think we all can seat ourselves and can do without the Disney princess touches. (: There was always a cooler full of drinks for us though; that was nice! Secondly, when you first arrive, you receive a schedule for your week there and you can tell that your butler has made your dinner reservations for you not only at your hotel, but the other two! Of course, you can cancel if you don’t feel up for it, but that was really nice to look on the schedule and say “Hey! We’re having French tonight at La Toc!”

Halcyon pool
This gives you an idea of the “age” of our hotel. I believe our hotel was the oldest on the island of the 3 Sandals resorts, but it still held a lot of charm. We liked this pool better since it was a tad more quiet and secluded.

Amenities: There were many places to lounge around the hotel, which was nice. We had two pools, and actually some “villas” had their own swim up pools! Those weren’t right on the beach, but did face it. They looked gorgeous! There was a gym that had quite a variety of equipment. Husband & I went our first full day there (we were so proud), then never looked back. LOL. You will see some staff walking around trying to sell you on a few things…like the spa. TAKE IT AND TALK TO THEM. We came in expecting to have a massage that week, so if that’s not for you, put yourself aside and just TAKE THE MASSAGE!!! These ladies were the sweetest and worked off commission, so it was understandable why they were such great sellers of their products & work! We opted in for the couple’s massage full of essential oils. You guys – I made myself stay awake for this massage because I never. wanted. to. forget. it. Sometimes when I’m really stressed, I’ll make myself go back to that time and remember the sweet lady telling me to “Inhaleeeee, exhaleeeee” all 9, YES NINE, essential oils before she put them on my back. It was so therapeutic and so calming. I’d go back to the hotel just for that massage alone!

Grande beach
By far, the Grande had the best beach. The best part was swimming out to those yellow things, which were basically big floaties. I loved taking my book out there & just chillin’! A bus picked us up from our hotel that morning & took us to the Grande. We actually stayed there all day & had dinner there (reservations made by butler).
Coffee on beach
This will always be one of my greatest memories – early morning wake ups & coffee on the beach! This was our hotel’s beach – I think you can tell a difference. (:

The biggest regret we have in this honeymoon was not taking advantage of any excursion while we were there. We would have loved to see the Pitons, and I would love to snorkel around there! But, we just wanted to chill. And that’s okay. It was a perfect honeymoon, and I highly recommend St. Lucia if you want to travel out of your comfort zone, be greeted by the most welcoming people, and experience a true paradise.

If you read this far, God bless you and go plan your next vacation! (:

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