St James Club & Villas, Mamora Bay, St Pauls, Antigua
4* All Inclusive Resort
Luxurious, spacious accommodation within a large, superbly maintained resort on the East coast of Antigua.
About the Hotel
St James’ Club is an upmarket 4* all inclusive resort in extensive grounds, on the Atlantic side of the island. Access to the hotel is via a long driveway where you will be served on arrival with a choice of pink lemonade or champagne. St James Club offers various types of accommodation, many facilities and activities, as well as several restaurants located around the 2 beaches, the village area and pools.
425 sq ft with garden views. The rooms have 1 king size bed with private balcony or terrace, shower/bath, hairdryer and safe.
Slightly larger rooms than the club rooms with air-conditioning, 1 king size or 2 double beds, partial ocean or garden views, bath/shower, bathrobes, TV, clock radio, ceiling fan, tea and coffee making facilities, desk, phone, hairdryer, safe.
540 sq ft with direct access onto Coco Beach, 1 king size or 2 double beds, bath with overhead shower, TV, clock radio, ceiling fan, tea and coffee making facilities, desk, phone, hairdryer and a safe.
330-570 sq ft with a separate check-in area and adults only pool. Suites have a sunken living room and a balcony with views overlooking Mamora Bay and complimentary free wifi (in the suite).
Royal Suites have a King size bed and sofa, 37″ flat screen tv, air-conditioning, bathrobes, clock radio, ceiling fan, tea and coffee making facilities, deep soaking tub, desk, phone, hairdryer, his and hers showers and sinks, iron and ironing board, patio, fridge and water views.
Junior Suites comprise a King size bed, 37″ flat screen tv, air-conditioning, bathrobes, clock radio, ceiling fan, tea and coffee making facilities, deep soaking tub, desk, phone, hairdryer, his and hers showers and sinks, iron and ironing board, patio, fridge, garden or water views.
2 and 3 bed villas are available for larger parties. Click on the link for further information.
My super, spacious room oozed luxury with an extremely comfortable kingsize bed and sumptuous pillows. There was a large walk in wardrobe with digital safe, a generous bathroom with oversized bath and shower above, his and hers sinks, lamps, ceiling fan, fridge, phone, clock radio, tv, tea and coffee making facilities and 2 bottles of complementary water. Walls were adorned with colourful, tropical canvases, the furniture made from dark wood and the floor had terracotta tiles. Patio doors opened onto a furnished balcony, overlooking the beach. The only down side to me was that the walls seemed very thin! I was in an interconnecting room and I could hear a lot of noise from the room next door.
Restaurants in St James’ Club
The Rainbow Garden overlooks the main pool and well manicured gardens. It has a large indoor seating area and a wrap-around, outdoor verandah where you can benefit from a cool breeze. Breakfast and lunch is served buffet style with a large selection of dishes on tables around the edge of the restaurant. Evening meals are a la carte. The presentation and cleanliness is first class.
Breakfasts include continental breakfast choices such as smoked salmon, meats and cheeses, bread, muffins, cakes and pastries, croissants and plates of fruit. Cooked breakfasts include delicious sausage patties, bacon, eggs, beans and escovitch fish. In addition, there is an omelette bar with sauces and salsas.
Options include a couple of soups, such as pepper pot or pumpkin. Sandwiches are offered with various fillings and salads. Several meat and vegetarian dishes are available from the silver, serving dishes. Dishes I enjoyed during my stay included scallop potatoes, jerk chicken, pineapple rice and tilapia in a herb crumb. Plenty of tempting desserts and juices are also on offer including coconut pie, cherry pastries, white chocolate nuggets and fruit salad.
Reservations need to be made in advance for dinner. I ate here on Seafood Night and the menu looked fantastic.
Starters included shrimp thermidor, mushroom crostini, octopus and potato salad and seafood chowder. I chose the shrimp thermidor which was very enjoyable. The mustard and three cheese cream sauce was full of flavour.
Mains choices included braised lamb shank, stuffed bell peppers, oysters and a lobster dish. The snapper was cooked perfectly, It was served with rice, plantain and a small fruit salsa. Unfortunately, it was a little disappointing as the dish was quite dry.
Desserts on offer were Caribbean pavlova, banoffee pie, chocolate cake and key lime pie.
Mamora Bay Coffee House
This is a wonderful place to come for a latte or cappuccino. It reminds me a bit of a tree house. The coffee house is log cabin like, with a wrap around, elevated and decked seating area, overlooking the grounds. Cookies, cakes, cucumber sandwiches and salmon on chunks of baguettes is the type of food you will find served here. Free Wifi is available here.
This restaurant was my personal favourite. It has a large, airy decked area with multiple ceiling fans. There is ample space between tables making it a good place for solo dining.
Towards the bar area, a singer was performing which I could also hear from my favourite seating area, the edge of the restaurant overlooking the water. The food in this self-serve buffet restaurant was of a high standard and very enjoyable with plenty of choice.
Mamora Bay Grill
As the name suggests, it is a simple grill on beautiful Mamora Bay, serving burgers and snacks until 6pm.
Coco Beach Restaurant and Bar
This restaurant is situated to the rear of the upper deck of one of the buildings by Coco Beach. It serves a range of more local Caribbean food such as fried fungi, conch fritters or pepper pot soup to start. Mains included curried goat, beef rundown and pineapple bbq chicken.
Eleven-11 is so named because it is open from 11am-11pm. It is positioned beside Coco’s restaurant with direct ocean views. I came here for lunch one day and I never tired of watching the brown pelicans dive for fish.
Eleven-11 serves soups, salads, a selection of paninis, sandwiches, burgers, wraps and fish and chips.
I ordered the burger and chips which was average in my opinion. The pistachio ice cream was recommended for dessert and it was very creamy with small chunks of nuts, delicious!
During my time here, this beach was very windy. I guess that is because it is located on the Atlantic side of the island. Unfortunately there was also an issue with seaweed coming onto the beach while I was here. Obviously that was out of anyone’s control and the hotel were doing a great job of trying to clear it. I believe there had also been an issue with this in July 2018. Seaweed aside, the beach is stunning with white sand, fringed with palm trees, plenty of sun loungers and close to the grill for snacks.
Mamora Bay is a stunning stretch of white sand outlined with palm trees and a small pier. The calm water makes it a great bay for non-motorised watersports such as kayaks and paddle boards. A wonderful beach barbecue was held here one night.
For $10 a shuttle providing a return trip to Shirley Heights runs at 4:30pm returning at 7pm or, 5pm returning at 8.30pm. A minimum of 4 people need to sign up for the service in order for it to run. Unfortunately, while I was there only the 4:30pm shuttle was running due to a lack of people signing up for the later one. This meant I was unable to see the reggae band at Shirley Heights which was a shame. However, it was still worth going to see the steel band play and admire the breathtaking views and sunset.
The gift shop within the grounds sells clothes, crafts, gifts, rum, snacks etc. I found some products a little pricey though… a small rum punch cost US$9 compared to EC$4.95 in the supermarket, so quite a big mark up!
Gym and Spa
The gym provides a superb range of equipment and the spa offers a range of therapies and treatments. Spa treatments are not included in the ‘all inclusive’ package.
Non-motorised watersports such as snorkelling, kayaks or paddle boards are available for use on Mamora Bay.
Reef Deck Pool
Wow, this is a fantastic pool, super for swimming laps or to take a dip to cool down. Water aerobics took place here every morning and looked fun, though I was far too lazy to join in. The sun loungers were very comfortable and there is a fair amount of shade available too. The bar is located close to the pool area providing a full range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
Adults Only Pool
There is also a separate children’s pool.
Well maintained tennis courts are available for use to guests day or night.
One evening there was a fabulous bbq on the Mamora beach under the stars. A great band played and later on a fire eater/limbo dancer performed.
Other evening entertainment on offer was a band, saxophonist, karaoke and bingo.
A board is placed close to reception informing guests of the daily activities on offer. Activities included water aerobics, beach volleyball, billiards competition, paddle board races and croquet.
Most of the staff here are polite and perhaps more formal than some of the other places I have stayed. I generally find that when travelling alone, staff tend to make conversation with me. This only happened on 2 occasions here once on the beach with a Manager I recognised from another hotel and once with my waiter at 11-11.
Would I Return?
St James’ Club is a beautiful, well maintained resort with luxurious rooms and fantastic facilities. There are also plenty of activities for solo travellers to get involved in. In my opinion, most of the restaurants were great for dining solo too and the majority of the food I had was outstanding. I can really recommend this hotel for a solo holiday.
Personally, I probably would not return because I have a preference for smaller resorts where I can become familiar and make conversations with other guests and staff. St James’ Club felt too big to do this. Being such a large resort, I don’t think I saw the same people from one day to the next.
Suggested Further Reading…
Things to do in Antigua – activities I have enjoyed as a solo traveller
Restaurants in Antigua – restaurants I have enjoyed dining solo at
Other Hotels in Antigua – places I can recommend for solo travel
Gallery of Photos – selection of photos from my solo travels to Antigua