A Little disappointed
Spent a week at Coco Palms after reading the very positive reviews. Overall, it didn't live up to its billing.
On the positive side, the people who worked at the hotel, and St Lucians in general, were genuinely warm, friendly and welcoming. The cost was affordable ($1300 CAN per person including taxes, all inclusive, from Toronto), the room reasonably maintained (but outdated, on the small side, no balcony), the housekeeping staff did a good job, and the air conditioning was effective and quiet.
However, it's a small hotel with cramped grounds located within a town. If you're looking for a beach vacation this may not be the place - the hotel is not on the beach. To get to it we either had to walk 10-15 minutes through the town, or take a more direct 5-10 minute walk down a very unpleasant, garbage strewn road bordered on one side with a high, concrete wall, topped with barbed wire and cemented in broken glass, and covered in graffiti, some of it obscenity laced.
The beach itself is clean, coral sand with clear water, about 1 km long and scenically located within a bay.
Unfortunately, there's not a stick of shade and the hotel provides no beach chairs or beach umbrellas. About a third of the beach dominated by a closed, boarded up, 70s style resort, complete with over grown shrubs, weeds, and empty swimming pools. We were told it closed about 10 years ago. It lends a sad, dilapidated air to a large portion of the beach.
Coco Palms has a swimming pool, a little greenish tinged but surrounded by pretty shrubs and flowering plants. During our week it was a magnet for lots of boisterous children - not surprising - it's only 4 ft deep.
We went all inclusive but it's not buffet style (except for breakfast). You must be seated by a server and can order from a limited menu (some items extra) - the meals were good, especially the seafood, but we exhausted the menu by about day 5. Juices are from a can, and little fresh local fruit, except for bananas.
We're still puzzled by the consistently positive reviews. Most of the hotel's customers were from St Lucia, other nearby islands, the UK and Europe. Perhaps they don't have the variety of affordable choices that we're fortunate to have when traveling out of Toronto, but for us, there are many places in the Caribbean that offer better value.