Has anyone booked through Villas of Distinction? Are they reputable and reliable?
Do they have an on-island representative? Someone to meet you at the dock, take you to get your rental jeep, take you to your villa, and someone on island to call if you have any maintainance issues during your stay. If not, I'd look at another rental company.
They are reputable and reliable, but they are only a broker located in NY and they will be handing you over to whatever local management company handles the house on St John. You will pay extra for their service. Post the name of the house here, or google it, and find out who manages it on St John, and rent it from them for less.
What Knolmom said.
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And it probably cost you a couple of hundred more to book thru them in NY. All of the people who met you, took you to the house and rented the jeep for you and the number you had in St John were not employees or agents of Villas of Distinction, they were a local company. I am certainly not deriding Villas of Distinction. We did use them once or twice in the beginning, but then became educated consumers., It's just like ordering something from the Neiman Marcus Catalog and then they run over to Target , buy it and mail it to you. If you feel more comfortable dealing with a stateside office, with people who have probably seen the property you are renting , that's fine.
Need to make a correction to the above. " never have seen the property".
We rented on St John from them. We have rented from another company before and since. I would NEVER rent from them again. Nice Villa but on island villa rep was clueless and couldn't get out quick enough. After a long day of travel we wanted to grill steaks and the gas grill didn't work. 5 starving, tired people. We called the villa manager and left a message ne response. I then called VOD and spoke to several people and got the run around each time. Finally got someone who contaced the New Villa manager and the issue was solved late in the day. So we lost a whole vacation day and at the the rate we paid it was quite upsetting. They told my wife the house had a gourmet kitchen. Not even close. Then it took several calls and email to get the security deposit refund and it was over 30 days. Bottom line we will NEVER rent from them again. You get nothing but BS from them... very disapointing for the money spent.
You want to rent from a management company that is located on the island where you are renting. You want their house managers number, their after hours problem number ect which you will not get from a place like villas of distinction, villas caribe, island hideaways ect.
That's not correct, each Villa Wholesaler I've ever used such as the ones you listed have on-island contacts for help or problems with the villa.
Just for some clarification on this for those that are new to the Villa renting business.
In most cases (and please note that I say most)
Villas are privately owned, they employ an on island management company or and individual to handle maintaing the villa. The management company may or may not also provide rental services as well.
An owners has the option to list their villa with as many rental "brokers" as they wish but normally, 1 company or the owner will maintain the calendar. (most are electronic now and very easy for multiple people to access and still ahve up to day info)
There are many on island companies that rent villas. I myself prefer to do business with a company that has an actual office on STJ. I understand that the management and maintenance of the villa I rent may be from another company but I like to have the company that I have been wokring with, on island in case of an issue.
If I have a specific question about a villa before renting, I can contact the office and an employee on STJ will answer my question.
That is not to say that the larger brokers are not reputable, most of them are. I just prefer to keep my business on STJ for my own personal comfort.