Cap Maison St Lucia, West Indies
Cap Maison is a small exclusive five-star resort that has been constructed on the Caribbean island of St Lucia. The resort is set in tropical landscaped gardens and its magnificent elevated seafront location affords wonderful views of the Caribbean Sea and across to the neighbouring island of Martinique.
The former sugar plantation estate, Cap Estate, ranges through 1,500 acres of beautiful rolling hills at the northern tip of the island, with the tranquil waters of the Caribbean Sea on one side and the invigorating Atlantic Ocean on the other.
Construction of the resort started in July 2006 and was completed in March 2008. MacLellan & Associates, international resort consultants, have provided services relating to overall project concept, development and construction planning, financial structures, hotel design, management and marketing arrangements, and fiscal forecasting.
Hotel and resort
Cap Maison opened in early 2008 incorporating the first luxury residence-style boutique hotel on St Lucia, believed to offer some of the largest luxury hotel suites in the Eastern Caribbean. Construction was completed on the grounds of the Cap Estate, a former sugar plantation site.
Cap Maison is an elegant 50-room hotel arranged across 22 privately owned residences and is made up of villa suites, studio suites and standard rooms. Villa sizes vary but can offer up to three separate hotel bedrooms and can be booked exclusively. The hotel is managed by the Cap Maison Management Company who pays room rental income to the 22 owners on a quarterly basis.
All of the suites have butler service. The villa suites can be easily combined with studio suites and rooms to make up two and three bedroom suites. Initially offered as an investment opportunity, all of the 22 residences have been sold to individual owners.
The project was developed by the Gobat family. Theo and Helen Gobat have been involved in St Lucian hospitality projects since 1972. In addition to its own resort amenities, Cap Maison offers guests privileged access to the sports and leisure facilities of nearby resorts, including the St Lucia Golf Club with its new 18-hole course.
Services and amenities
Services and amenities include a cliff-top restaurant, spa, gym, beach and water sports facilities and golf at the nearby St Lucia Golf and Country Club. A new Jack Nicklaus-designed course is minutes away from the resort. The course was opened in 2009.
The Marina is the departure point for yacht charters and sightseeing day trips, including excursions to nearby Pigeon Island, a breathtaking natural park that reflects a thousand years of history. The hotel has its own luxury boat for exclusive use by guests for sunset cruises and day trips.
Venezuelan-American Lane Pettigrew of Lane Pettigrew Associates is the project architect and has brought an elegant blend of Caribbean and South American-inspired design to the project. Pettigrew said: "Cap Maison's residences are 'handmade', each unique, the furniture and fittings being sought throughout the Caribbean and Central America."
The designs for Cap Maison have elements of colonial Mexican villages, with multi-tiered balconies overflowing with bougainvillea and terracotta roof tiles, and built around a central entry courtyard and fountain. The hotel has been constructed using coral stonework, hand painted tiles, exotic woods and natural finishes.
The remarkably spacious, airy interiors were done in soothing floral-inspired hues with many handmade textiles and furnishings and enclosed by wood-crafted cedar jalousie doors and windows to allow cool breezes to flow through the space.
Elegant bathrooms feature in all suites and rooms and fully appointed cooks kitchens are de rigueur across all villa suites. Landscape designer Veronica Shingleton-Smith has overseen the design and planting of the three and half acre garden.
The property's Ocean View Grand Villa Suites measure 3,000ft², thought to be the largest in the Eastern Caribbean. They come with a large en suite bedroom with private balcony, kitchen and separate living/dining room with veranda, and a private roof terrace with its own swimming pool or Jacuzzi and bar. Ocean Villa Suites are located on the ground floor but otherwise share the same facilities, while all Studio Suites have an ocean view and some Deluxe Rooms enjoy garden views.
All rooms and suites have the latest in 21st century convenience, including DVD players, stereos, air conditioning, ceiling fans, outdoor showers, laptop rental, mini bar, hot beverage station, plasma screen televisions (32in in the bedroom and 42in in the lounge) and wireless internet access.
A cliff-top restaurant, The Cliff at Cap, with panoramic views and French Caribbean cuisine is one of the most coveted tables on the island. Guests of the villa suites also have the option of having their evening meal prepared in their suite by a private chef and served on their roof terrace.
Theo's Bar, named after the hotel's owner, has the same cliff-top location. The Pool Bar serves drinks and light snacks throughout the day and there is also a well-stocked Beach Bar. A walk-in wine cellar stocks fine wines from both the old world and the new. Guests can select a bottle from the wine list to enjoy with lunch or dinner, or visit the Cellar personally, where the sommelier can help the guest choose a perfect wine to savour anytime.
Health spa and gym
The gym is well-equipped, offering a cross-trainer, exercise bike, treadmills, resistance machines and classes including yoga. Personal trainers are also available for more individualised programmes.
The Cap Maison Spa has a range of treatments on offer from shiatsu to Swedish massage, designed to leave the guest with a feeling of total wellbeing. In addition, the calming Zen garden is the perfect place to relax after the treatment. Treatments can be provided in the privacy of a suite, or even on the cliff-top or beach.
St Lucia Golf & Country Club
Guests can benefit from concessionary golf at an adjacent 18-hole championship golf course. The course is a par 71 and 6,829 yards with a 350-yard driving range. Professional coaching is available, and the pro-shop stocks branded golf equipment. The Duffers Restaurant in the clubhouse offers snacks and beverages, and a place to socialise and unwind. All players use powered electric golf carts.
A new clubhouse has been opened with lounge bars and open air dining. Another 18-hole Jack Nicklaus-designed course at Cap Estate, a five-minute walk away from the hotel, was completed in 2009. In addition, the island of St Lucia as a whole is currently having four new 18-hole courses constructed, designed by famous professional golfers including Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Greg Norman and Christie O’Connor Jnr.