With stunning views overlooking the ocean, Jade Mountain Resort in St Lucia is a resort like no other, its futuristic architecture designed in harmony with nature to offer privacy and seclusion whilst capturing the best vista from any angle. Located in an elevated hillside location above its sister property, it is a resort within a resort of the private 600-acre estate of Anse Chastenet, with which it shares access to restaurants, bars, beaches, spa, water sports and more. A shuttle takes guests to and from Anse Chastenet.
There are 24 infinity pool rooms or “sanctuaries” and five sky jacuzzi suites, all enjoying sensational views out over the Pitons and the Caribbean Sea, all individually designed and all enjoying butler service in the form of around the clock Major Domos. The property’s philosophy is all about being a tech-free zone allowing guests to fully relax although Wi-Fi can be provided if specifically requested so there are no televisions, radios or telephones and guests are asked to refrain from using their mobiles in public.
Jade Mountain Resort is adult only, with on-site facilities including the Shades of Jade Boutique; the Kai En Ciel Spa offering both in-room or in the spa treatments; an air-conditioned fitness centre with Cybex and Life Fitness equipment; the Jade Mountain Restaurant celebrating James Beard Award Winner Chef Allen Susser’s Jade Cuisine and the Celestial Terrace, perfect for cocktails and stargazing.
Rising above the 600-acre private estate of Anse Chastanet, Jade Mountain is sited high up on Morne Chastanet with views out over St Lucia’s famous Piton World Heritage Site and the Caribbean Sea. It is a ten-minute walk down to Anse Chastanet and its copious facilities or there is a complimentary shuttle if preferred.
The resort is 2.4 kilometres north of Soufrière (a rather bumpy 10-minute drive) and approximately 27 kilometres or a 55-minute transfer from UVF Hewanorra International Airport and 43.4 kilometres or a 75-minute drive from SLU George Charles Airport.
Each of the 24 individually designed suites or sanctuaries enjoy spacious open plan layouts with bedrooms, living areas and stunning private infinity pools flowing into each other on three sides with the fourth open to the elements, allowing for stunning views out over St Lucia’s twin Pitons and the glittering Caribbean Sea. These sculptural sanctuaries are accessed via long, suspended sky bridges ensuring total privacy.
The room categories reflect the square meterage of the space, the size of the pool and the extent of the view available with those higher up or located at a corner enjoying the best vistas.
The “Star” infinity pool sanctuaries offer 130 – 167 square metres of space with infinity pools averaging 42 square metres; the “Moon” infinity pool sanctuaries are 149 – 181 square metres of space with pools averaging 60 square metres, the “Sun” infinity pool sanctuaries on more elevated locations offer up to 186 square metres and pools averaging up to 84 square metres of space whilst the “Galaxy” sanctuaries on the highest level enjoy the most commanding panoramic views plus the largest living areas at 186 square metres of space with infinity pools averaging 84 square metres – located on the south-west corner.
In addition to the infinity pool sanctuaries, there are five Sky jacuzzi suites, one of which is air-conditioned, located on the lower hillside slopes. With a two-level accommodation layout, these suites are around 153 square metres of space and instead of a pool, have a raised Jacuzzi tub towering above the living spaces.
Sanctuary amenities include minibars, tea and coffee makers, hair dryers, iron and ironing boards, Frette towels and bathrobes and Molton Brown toiletries whilst the Sun and Galaxy sanctuaries also feature a small wine cellar stocked with fine wines.
There are no televisions, radios or telephones but Wi-Fi connectivity is available on request as Jade Mountain offers a tech-free environment to fully relax and integrate with nature.
With the exteriors cast in rough concrete with locally quarried stone with tropical hardwood movable jalousie louvers, interiors are softer with crushed blush toned coral wall plaster. Locally made fine tropical wood furniture complements an eclectic mix of furnishings to give each sanctuary its own atmosphere with the living room floors finished with more than 20 different species of tropical hardwood flooring harvested in an environmentally correct way.
Bathrooms have large whirlpool tubs with point massage jets – large enough for two - on a raised dais with chroma-therapy whilst the tropical hardwood vanities have fine brushed stainless steel or nickel-plated European fixtures. They have coral tile floors with handmade glass tile shower walls and high-tech stainless-steel shower units with powerful massage jets and rainfall shower heads, custom light fittings, porcelain wash bowls, adjustable makeup mirrors and hair dryers.
The infinity pools have shallow lounging areas in addition to a large swimming space and are illuminated at night with fibre optic lighting, the colour of which can be chosen by the guest. All are surfaced with one of a kind iridescent glass tiles which have been specifically designed for Jade Mountain. Similar tiles are used in the bathrooms and each pool has its own individually designed glass tile colour scheme giving each sanctuary its own personality.
Jade Mountain Resort has its own reception and concierge area with clothing and gifts available at the resort’s boutique, Shades of Jade. There is also a two-room spa and fitness centre – Kai en Ciel Spa – where guests may enjoy a wide range of treatments and massages either there or in-room as well as complimentary yoga sessions in the early morning.
Jade Mountain guests may also enjoy all the extensive facilities of sister resort Anse Chastanet at the bottom of the hill – a short walk or shuttle away.
For major pampering, there is a much larger spa Kai Belté Spa at beach level with five air-conditioned treatment rooms, a hair and nail salon as well as an open-air cabana Kai Mer overlooking the Anse Chastanet Reef. Each treatment is custom designed for each guest or couple with products used from their own organic farm Emerald’s, aromatherapy products from Aromatherapy Associates and Ayurvedic products from Tara. For those missing a shopping buzz, there are two beachside boutiques and an Art Gallery.
For beach lovers, there are two silver sand beaches with loungers and towels, one (Anse Mamin) a short distance away, easily accessible via the resort’s shuttle boats.
Other experiences include guided walks and hikes around the 600-acre estate to learn more about the natural history of the area, Creole history classes, underwater slideshows, Spa chats and chocolate sensory tasting sessions. Other options include daily cruise excursions, mountain biking, scuba diving, kayaking, birdwatching, zip lining, dolphin and whale watching, deep sea fishing and more, much more.
On the food side, there are multiple cookery classes available and visits possible to Anse Chastanet Resort’s organic farm. The Emerald Estate is located in the Soufrière hills, around 20 minutes’ drive away and it has been growing organic product for the resort’s kitchens since 2007 under the supervision of consulting chef, Allen Susser – the ultimate in farm to fork dining.
There are over 2,000 cocoa trees on the Estate providing the cocoa beans used in the resort’s own chocolate production. There is even a Chocolate Laboratory on site with tastings and classes available whilst the resort’s bars, restaurants and even the spa feature chocolate inspired dishes, cocktails and body treatments.
With a futuristic and environmentally sound design that would not be out of place in a Bond movie, the multi-award-winning Jade Mountain Resort is in fact the stylish creation of owner and architect, Nick Troubetzkoy who believes in building harmony with nature.
A secluded retreat with privacy a priority, if you want to totally switch off and relax into the pristine nature with which the resort is surrounded, you can easily do so as internet access is restricted to the reception with mobiles frowned upon in public. It is not for nothing that the individual accommodation is called a sanctuary as there are no radios or televisions either in suite with each accommodation accessed by long, wooden walkways. Of course, you can be Wi-Fi connected in suite but why would you want to?
With every whim catered for by a team of butlers and knowledgeable concierges around the clock, there are two beautiful beaches and a wide range of activities, bars, restaurants and pampering available just down the hillside at Anse Chastanet – a simple ten-minute walk downhill with a handy shuttle to take you back again to your suite.
This perfect retreat seems like paradise to me.
Surrounding an infinity pool, the Jade Mountain Club is exclusively for resident guests, open throughout the day and serving Chef Allen Susser’s “Jade Cuisine” – a fusion with cultural influences and unique techniques using seasonal ingredients. A James Beard Award winner, Susser’s cuisine features the prime organic produce – from vegetables to micro greens, salads to fruits, spices to nuts and herbs - grown at Anse Chastanet’s very own Emerald Organic Farm. The menu also benefits from the resort’s own chocolate production, made from the cocoa tree beans grown at the Farm. Enjoy live entertainment at Jade Mountain Club several times a week. Above the restaurant, lies the Celestial Terrace, perfect for watching the sun go down, cocktail in hand or for stargazing.
At Anse Chastanet, there are three more restaurants and two bars plus The Jungle Beach Bar & Grill at Anse Mamin, available to Jade Mountain guests. Near the reception, there is the Treehouse Restaurant – two treehouses with beautiful views out over the ocean, serving Caribbean dining – and the Piti Piton Lounge and Bar serving Emerald’s all vegetarian Menu. On the beach, there is the Trou au Diable beach restaurant and bar, serving Apsara, St Lucia-East India fusion cuisine alongside a grill menu.
Long before it became fashionable and necessary to embrace sustainability, it has been at the very heart of the operations of Anse Chastanet since owner Nick Troubetzkoy bought the Estate in the 1970s and later built Jade Mountain Resort using eco-principles. He recognised early on the importance of both creating authentic experiences celebrating the culture of St Lucia and of supporting the local economy and community.
The materials used to build Jade Mountain come from the island itself and when they couldn’t source materials close to home, they turned to their Caribbean neighbours bringing in finishes from Barbados, Guyana and the Dominican Republic. The resort has established extensive millwork and fine woodworking operations on site with most of the woodwork for the furnishings using dense tropical hardwoods. They also have their own garden nursery which propagates thousands of tropical plants used for landscaping with the ultimate goal of draping the hillside in greenery, evoking images of the hanging gardens.
At Jade Mountain, the management team critically analyse their footprint and have instigated policies and training to minimise the impact of the resort on the surrounding environment. All cleaning products are non-toxic, non-corrosive and bio-degradable and the resort enforces strict wastewater discharge practices. Rainwater is harvested and stored in a system of reservoirs, feeding their own on-site water treatment centre with a terraced reed bed that cleans the effluent water prior its use as irrigation water. Even the swimming pools’ water quality is continuously monitored and treated with “Oxoneators” which is a chlorine-free process.
Native flora, fauna and tree removal is prevented with the resort protecting natural waterways, ensuring that erosion and runoff are mitigated. This care extends to the protected near shore area now declared a marine reserve.
Jade Mountain also practices energy saving initiatives with only natural lighting used during the day. Externally and within the grounds, yellow lighting is used which does not interfere with the local environment or wild animal behaviour and is also approved for use in turtle breeding grounds.
Design wise – with the exception of 12 air-conditioned suites, the balance of the resort’s accommodation has been built to take advantage of natural air flow.
Fish and farm produce is sourced within the local community or via the resort’s own Emerald Organic Farm, minimizing transport footprints.
Used soap, shampoo and personal care items are put into use in staff areas and are biodegradable. Even towels are re-cut and reused in public areas.
To communicate and encourage guest participation in environmental concerns, the resort shares information about the culture, history and ecology of the region including local environmental protection efforts. Guests are also invited to join in such efforts with reef cleaning, beach cleaning and tree planting. There is also a towel and sheet reuse programme in operation.
The environmental teams at Jade Mountain regularly meet with the local community to ensure continued supplier operations and local customs are upheld. The resort stores also sell locally produced artwork, handicrafts and other local goods.