From the NY Post:
October 16, 2007 -- A quick rule of thumb: When your property sits atop a stretch of land that none less than Oprah has declared to be one of the five places to see before you die, well, you can be pretty sure you've gotten something special.
That's what you'll find at St. Lucia's Jalousie Plantation, a beachfront resort nestled in a cove at the foot of the Caribbean island's most famous pair of mountain peaks - the breathtaking (and, perhaps more important, Oprah-approved) Pitons.
Until recently, the only way for a person to take in the scene was to book a room at the resort. But now, The Villas at Jalousie Plantation, a new development to be managed by Sunswept Resorts, is rolling out about 50 single, one-bedroom (a single with a living room) and double villas ranging from $580,000 to $1.2 million.
Intended for use as vacation homes, the villas will be available to their owners four weeks out of the year. The rest of the time, the homes will be part of the resort's rental pool - offering owners a revenue stream the remainder of the year.
Each residence comes with walk-in showers, claw-foot tubs, private plunge pools and flat-screen TVs. And while the villas don't include kitchens, they do come with butler service and all-inclusive access to all of the resort's amenities - from dining and spa treatments to golf and snorkeling.
The scenery, though, is really the thing - 325 acres of tropical forest tucked away beneath the Pitons on a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site. As Sunswept marketing director Michael Bryant says, "There's no doubt the location is pretty much everything here."
Not that the views on the other side of the island are anything to sneeze at, either.
There, along the hillside of St. Lucia's southeastern coast, DCG Properties is building the multi-phase Le Paradis development. It's slated to include a 282-unit Starwood Westin condo-hotel (one-, two- and three-bedrooms ranging from $495,000 to $1.3 million), 25 luxury villas (3,500 square feet to 4,000 square feet, priced from $1.7 million to $2.6 million), 225 home sites (ranging in size from .3 to .5 acres) and a marina village featuring retail, additional housing, a hotel and 42 boat slips - including space for yachts of up to 220 feet.
Tying it all together will be a 7,104-yard, 18-hole, ocean-view golf course by Greg Norman Golf Design.
"It's a chance to get in before prices go up," says DCG marketing director Suzanne Gryspeerdt, noting that the island has largely remained under the radar, as neighboring spots like Barbados have become more and more expensive.
"St. Lucia is starting to move from a mid-range to a high-end destination," Gryspeerdt says, citing the entry of big players like Starwood Westin into the market. "It's about to take off."