Rodney's Wellness Retreat 
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Welcome to Soufriere

Vue of the Island

History of Soufriere Estate & its link to the Retreat

Combined with its unique geographic and volcanic composition, it is known to be a site of archaeological findings reported to be associated with Dominica's now extinct Arawak Indians. Owned by French emigrant Joseph Bellot from Marseilles, France in the late 1800, the Soufriere estate was later sold to the Shillingford family who changed from cocoa cultivation to citrus, mainly grapefruit and orange.

An 18th century house (remnants of which can still be seen) overlooking "Gleau Gayak" was used by the first owners to entertain their concubines (Remnants of it can still be seen). In the late 40's early 50's the estate was sold to L.Rose & Co Ltd at a time when war was rife in Europe, and thousands of British soldiers were dying of scurvy and lime was considered the magic cure for scurvy. The new owners of the estate, L. Rose and Co Ltd. therefore allocated most of the estate to the cultivation of limes.

The cultivation of limes and processing of lime juice became the mainstay of the local economy and a key cultivator to foreign exchange earnings of Dominica. Persons from villages across Dominica came to work on the estate as skilled workers and artisans. The lime juice was actually shipped by barges from Soufriere jetty directly to the docks in Liverpool, England. Evidence of an old watermill can be seen at the old estate works.

When the destructive winds of Hurricane David struck Dominica in 1979 the Soufriere estate was not spared as Soufriere was one of the worst hit villages. Following David, attempts to revitalize the lime industry in Soufriere were not successful. The estate lands were then passed on to the government of Dominica for distribution to local farmers. During this period, Rodney Lewis, a former estate manager with L.Rose was able to purchase this portion of the estate which, during the hey days of the estate was known as Kanawa. Kanawa was the central nursery for the estate where lime plants and other citrus plants and fruits used for windbreaks were propagated.

Sunset on Soufriere Bay        Soufriere and Scott's Head        Vue of the Island

Contact us

BEVIN LEWIS / Soufriere, Dominica
Tel: +1 (767) 440-8222 / +1 (767) 612 2400 / +1 (767) 613-3417

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