in 2015 i solder about 50 of the APA102
i used a hot air rework station and solder paste.
for me that did not worked so well... about 10 leds cracked during soldering. with cracked i mean the silicon encapsulation cracked - so most of the time the leds did not work any more..
i think that was moisture in the leds. so for a safer result it would be good to bake theme before soldering. (because they are not delivered in a moister-sealed back..)
for example nichia recommends 65°C for >= 24h as baking parameters. (source: datasheet NSSM124 SMD rgb led - page 14
the photo shows one of the APA102 after de-soldering because of the crack in the encapsulation..