Tropical breezes and white sandy beaches beckon at Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa.
Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa, a luxurious suites only resort that opened in December 2002 on the North Atlantic side of Martinique in Le François. It is located 15 miles from Fort de France, the administrative capital of Martinique, yet it is worlds away from the hustle and bustle of the city, with its breathtaking ocean views, beautiful tropical gardens and inviting infinity pool. Edward F. Nesta and I stayed at the hotel in April 2006, where we were pampered from the minute we entered the hotel.
Immediately after we entered the hotel, an elegantly attired uniformed staff member met us in the reception area and greeted us with "Welcome to Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa," settled us on a luxurious sofa, and brought us cool scented towels and cold, refreshing glasses of iced tea with fresh mint. After the gracious welcome and some paperwork, we were escorted to our suite in a colorful Creole style villa, passing by the seemingly endless 40-meter freeform infinity swimming pool, before our eyes feasted on the beach and tranquil lagoon.
Suite Living Room
We entered our opulent suite just as a staff member was pouring glasses of champagne to accompany fresh pineapple. We quickly changed into our swimsuits, and walked outside to our private lanai bypassing the wood chairs, and sipped our champagne from the luxury of our own private plunge pool. With just enough time to spare, we took a quick walk on the sandy beach, took a dip in the lagoon, and then it was time for our spa treatments at The Spa at Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa - welcome to paradise! The Spa at Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa features sumptuous Guerlain treatments and products where magic occurs in the their steam room, Japanese pool, and through facials, massages, body wraps, and pedicures. Read the Spas section for more information on The Spa at Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa.
We returned to our room relaxed from the spa treatments and noticed all the details of the room, from the canopy over the stylish wood sofa with lipstick red cushions, the madras colors of the fabric of the pillows on the sofa, and on the rattan chair cushions in the living room, to the colorful pillows on the king bed adorned with pristine white linens and mosquito netting canopy to create a romantic ambience, and carried throughout the rooms to the outdoor tile shower, done in colors of saffron, blue and burnt sienna, where we took showers in our own tropical garden under a rain shower head.
Thoughtful details prevailed throughout the wood and tiled floor suite including the bar set-up in the living room with full size bottles of Moët and Chandon in the refrigerator, and a cutting board, limes, sugar cane, and bottles of Tangueray, Tangueray Sterling, Sir Edward's 12, St. James Rhum Vieux, and St. James Rhum Blanc on the bar.
The suite featured his and hers dressing areas where robes hung in the closet and the drawers had gold starfish drawer pulls, separate his and hers vanity areas, in the bedroom there was an exotic floral arrangement of heliconias on the desk, a plasma television, CD, DVD and radio, a Lavazza combination espresso, decaf espresso and tea machine, and in the bathroom, there was a deep soaking tub with hand-held shower and Moulton Brown amenities, a vase with anthurium, and a separate enclosed lavatory.
The hotel has two restaurants, their casual beachside restaurant and bar, Le Campêche, and their gastronomic French restaurant, Le Belem. French Chef de Cuisine Hervé Rameau presides over the restaurants where he brings the best of his training from Michelin star restaurants in Paris and working in St. Martin to the restaurants. Le Belem is an elegantly modern restaurant that features an excellent selection of more than 400 bottles and 120 varieties of French and international wines in the tower-like round wine cellar. Read about Le Belem in the Restaurants section and Chefs' Recipes sections where Chef Rameau shares a taste of Martinique in English and in French.
Cap Est Bar
Their well-stocked bar, Le Cohi Bar, open in the evening, provides guests with the opportunity to sample their extensive selection of Martinique Agricole Rhums. We happily spent hours experiencing the differences by nosing and sipping our way through rhums from Trois Rivières, Saint James, Dillon, Depaz, Saint Etienne, Bally, Neisson, Clément, J.M. and La Mauny, produced in different areas of Martinique, where the diverse terroir influences the nose and taste. Read the Liquor Cabinet for additional rhum articles.
We enjoyed time on the beach lounging in chairs under palm trees where attendants brought us fresh fruit kebabs in the afternoon, and even took advantage of their complimentary water sports, which include hobie cats, kayaking and snorkeling equipment. Although Ed and I regularly kayak, it was a bit interesting using a double kayak, but we found our rhythm and explored the perimeters of the lagoon. Snorkeling was a blast and seeing the plentiful fish and sea cucumbers on the sandy bottom of the lagoon. We wanted to try a sport called kite surfing, imagine windsurfing except you use a kite to pull you along, and although they offer lessons, after back-to-back kayaking and snorkeling, we had reached our exercise quota for the day. The hotel also has a boat called the "White Shark" to take guests on excursions.
Other interesting features of the hotel include a koi pool outside Le Belem, a Library where guests can borrow books, DVDs, CDs, explore the navigation maps on the walls, use the Internet, or browse through a book of sightseeing tours and information. Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa offers guests a luxury experience and many reasons to return. When planning your trip to Martinique, please note that Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa and Le Belem close from September to mid-October for annual maintenance.
View From the Pier
Read other articles on Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa in the Destinations, Spas, Restaurants, and Chefs' Recipes (English and French versions) sections.
Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa
Quartier la Prairie
97240 Le François
Telephone: + 596 596 54 80 80
Fax: + 596 596 54 96 00
Read other articles on Martinique in the Destinations, Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, Fashion, Liquor Cabinet and Travel News sections.
For more information on Martinique, please contact the Martinque Promotion Bureau at www.martinique.org.
© August 2006. Luxury Experience. www.LuxuryExperience.com. All rights reserved.