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“Very good value for SBH” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel LeVillage St Barth

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Hotel LeVillage St Barth
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Baie de St-Jean, St. Jean 97133, St Barthelemy (Formerly Hotel le Village St Jean)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in St. Jean
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Market Harborough, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
98 helpful votes 98 helpful votes
“Very good value for SBH”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2006

Firstly I would wish to cover Hotel Village St. Jean (VSJ) , followed by some general observations about travel to St Barths (SBH) from the UK, via St Marteen (SXM). It can be done in a day.

We stayed in mid February 2006 at VSJ for 9 nights in a deluxe cottage and found it very good indeed. The staff were friendly and helpful, the cottage itself well equipped and comfortable. The island, as I am sure most are aware, is expensive, and assuming you are looking at VSJ to keep the costs within bounds then the cottage does give you the ability to self cater on some nights and do breakfasts. The kitchen is sufficient for simple meals and food is readily available at local supermarkets or other nearby food shops. We ate out at Nikki beach, le Sereno, Maya’s , the Terrace at VSJ (good and easy option) and Eden Rock and had many picnics from Maya’s to Go. All were very good, enjoyable and not cheap. Whilst the island is very small you do really need a car to take full advantage. VSJ booked one for us in advance upon our request. VSJ also provides good and reasonably priced internet access for those who just can't quite give it all up for 10 days.

A couple of downsides that just hold me back from a 5 star rating for VSJ are noise level. Traffic and daytime aircraft (not night time ... no flights) noise is higher in the St Jean area than the rest of the island, but this is not just at VSJ. It was NOT too intrusive, but one could not describe it as peaceful either. St. Jean is also North facing so no glorious Caribbean sunrises or sunsets. We also suffered a significant number of mosquito bites, again may not be unique to VSJ, but it did detract from the overall experience. Bring plenty of repellents and bite treatments.

Now for the travel experience. We flew Air France from UK (Birmingham) to Paris CDG and allowed 2 hours to change to the AF 11:00 am flight to SXM, all through Terminal 2 at CDG. We had booked on Air Caraibes 16:25 flight to SBH (allowing 90 mins) to transfer – we had checked luggage. Having read about the potential for chaos at SXM we had booked St. Barths Service to help us through SXM and on to the SBH flight. When the Air France flight was 30 mins late we thought it a good move. In fact what happened was:

We were met by St Barths Service, and we gave him our tickets and pictures (to help him .. the wonders of digital photography!) of our luggage along with the luggage tags. We then went through the transfer gate and waited .. and waited. It was quite clear St Barths Services were too busy, and we did not get priority treatment. Having got another couple to the ferry, they checked us in too late to make the 4:25 flight. Others from the AF flight successfully made the 4:25 flight. Eventually they managed to get us on the 5:00pm flight and we were told our luggage had been found and taken separately. When we arrived in SBH only one of two bags had made it. St Barths Services had clearly not taken a great deal of care in identifying or transferring our luggage. The SXM baggage handlers seem to do it anyway since though AF do not issue boarding cards for Air Caraibes (or WinAir) or officially check your luggage through (you still have to collect it) they do mark it as destined to SBH.

At this point St Barths Service did begin to try to give a service, though they needed daily chasing and 4 days later the bag was traced .. it was still in Paris, something that would have been clear at 15:30 Thursday, not 9:00 Monday had they done a proper job. The luggage eventually got to us 5 days into a 10 day holiday.

My advice is

1 always take enough to survive on in hand luggage OR better still do it all on hand luggage.
2 allow plenty of time to transfer in SXM
3 do SXM yourself.. it is chaotic but not unmanageable

Overall we would strongly recommend St Barths and also suggest you look very seriously at Hotel Village St. Jean .. it has a lot to recommend it.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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170 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
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English first
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2006

I have stayed at Village St. Jean about ten times. There is nothing as cozy, pretty, fun, etc. as this little jewel of a hotel run by the loveliest family, The Charneaus!

The rooms are wonderful; location fabulous; their restaurant has wonderful food; and you always feel so welcome. Most guests rebook as they get in their cab to head to airport back home!!!!

I don't want to say too many good things as I may never get my room again!

It is a FABULOUS boutique hotel at a very fair tariff that enables you to stay in a wonderful room and still enjoy the $$$$$$$$$ of St. Barts!

You should go!

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2006

As with St. Martin(the French side last year), the first question is the island itself. St. Martin was overdeveloped and disappointing,even though where we stayed was wonderful(L'Esplanade). The island itself makes a big difference, unless you are staying at the hotel and pool the whole time.

St. Barths is expensive and more difficult to get to since you take an overpriced 20 minute flight from St. Maarten, or a ferry boat with cab rides. That said, it is quite beautiful, with controlled development, and similar to St. John in topography (very hilly), except it has better shopping,French ambience, and better food (but more expensive).
O.K.- to the specifics
Village St. Jean- rerasonable price for St. Barths and wonderful standard terrace cottages (upper units have a view overlooking the bay). People very helpful and friendly. They didn't have beach chairs or umbrellas available when we arrived, but if you have a car, rent the backpack beach chairs from the beach shop down the hill in St. Jean (37 for the week and worth it). There are great beaches- Gouveneur and Saline, or a walk of 25 minutes to Columbier is worth it. Shell Beach, in walking distance from Gustavia, is not as big and is more crowded, but is worth it for the shells, and a drink at sunset at Do Brazil, which also is worth a dinner visit. Best restaurants were Wall House (relatively reasonable, classy and friendly service, and delicious Prix Fixe dinner) Zanzibarth- expensive but very good food; Eddie's in Gustavia is o.k. and reasonable; K'fe Massai is good prix fixe. Lunch prices are as much as dinner prices in the states. The big supermarket across the street (literally from the airport)is a great source for make your own food (picnic lunch for the beach, or back at the unit dinner). Most places will give you an honest exchange rate to pay in dollars, but check the exchange rate before going. Some will rip you off, and you should charge the meal, even though credit card companies will add 2-3% on foreign currency charges. Shopping in Gustavia is high end stuff, and there are places where you can get a good buy, but they are off the main street. If the planes are cancelled because of high winds, IMMEDIATELY make a ferry reservation (the airline lies about "on time" in early morning, so check regularly). Otherwise, ferries fill up and you may miss your connection in St. Maarten.

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2005

My wife and I found Village St. Jean to be a lovely and affordable family-operated hotel. We stayed in a standard room for 6 nights at 190 Euro/night. The staff were warm and very approachable esp Phillipe and the bar staff at Terrazza; the Texas woman's review about the staff being haughty I did not understand or agree with AT ALL (perhaps some of last year's seasonal staff were to blame?). We chose the hotel in part due to closeness to the beach, though there is a sizable hill to climb from the beach. We got a car on our second day, so we really didn't need to be close as it turned out. Our room was small but very serviceable. Any complaints I have are minor: some mosquitos, our king bed was really 2 twins together, the water would burn you easily if not careful, there was some road noise (no more than any where else probably), and no secure online booking. The good things more than outweighed them: affordable rates, a wonderful pool with a great view of the bay, we had the hottub to ourselves every evening for a relaxing soak, easy parking, beach chairs umbrellas and floats available free, a cute terrace to relax on, a small fridge for food we bought at the grocery, an honor system commissary (for bottled water, beer, suntan lotion, snacks, etc), walking proximity to restaurants and shops in St Jean, and a short drive everywhere else.

Lessons learned: we might bring friends and get a villa next time so we can cook in a night or two--though Village St. Jean is easily an option we'll consider again, we'd come in April (at low season rates) because the water was a touch cool for us in March, we'd rent a car for the whole time next time, and we'd stay longer than 6 nights!

Restaurants not to miss: K'fe Massai - great food, drinks and best service we had; Do Brazil - wonderful Mahi Mahi; La Grain de Sel - visit Saline beach and eat lunch there; La Creperie - visit Gustavia and eat lunch there. Overrated/overpriced: Zanzibarth, Nikki Beach - nothing special, but go Sun afternoon for drinks and socializing. And eat late, 8pm or later, restaurants are dead earlier.

  • Stayed March 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2005

We stayed in a Deluxe Cottage (number 20 or 22 I believe) in August 2004. The cottage had a driveway for our rickety Suzuki Samuri (par for the course on St. Barth unless you're J Lo) and a lovely partially covered verandah/dining area. The bedroom was spacious and comfortable, and the bathroom was clean and quite large by European standards.

The view from the cottage over Petit St. Jean was breath taking. Many nights, we opted to stay in (the small kitchen was sufficient for preparing meals provisioned by the local market called Match, near the airport) and read on the verandah. The proprietors were more than happy to make reservations for us on the nights we decided to go out. There are great restaurants within a very short walking distance (try Andy's, Nikki Beach or Le Piment).

The hotel has a pool, although we never used it, preferring the beaches. It also has a lovely internet lounge/library/rec area. It is a great value on this relatively expensive island.

  • Stayed August 2004
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
159 helpful votes 159 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2005

Went right before Christmas 2004. Booked a regular hotel room which when shown offered no view from the small balcony. I paid to be upgraded to a standard cottage which was fabulous. Lovely bedroom -- air con present but not needed, fabulous deck -- actually an outdoor living area with chaise lounges, table for four and small kitchen. St. Jean Beach was but a three minute walk down the hill. A smallish, very clean pool is included at the hotel. Food in the lovely restaurant was good if a bit pricey. Internet cafe on premises draws visitors from outside the hotel.

This hotel is very professionally run by the owners who live on premises. Many repeat guests (as well as newcomers like me) are treated like family.

Overall a "best value" in a very expensive and lovely outpost of France. I would return tomorrow.

  • Stayed January 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 15, 2004

As a female traveling solo, I did not find a warm reception here. The staff was rather haughty for no good reason, as far as I could see. My room was small and dark because of all the vegetation growing outside the window. The pool was tiny and you had to drive to get to a nice beach. I got so fed up with the attitude that I moved to a different hotel mid-stay -the Sea Horse which was much friendlier and an even better value. I have also stayed at the Sofitel Christopher which is a lovely hotel with the biggest pool on the island. Needless to say- I will not return to the St. Jean.

In case anyone is interested, I've been to St. B 3 times and think the best hotels are the following (depending on what you value most): Best Pool - Sofitel Christopher, Best Beach - Guanahani, Best Splurge- Le Toiny, Best Inexpensive hotel - the Sea Horse.

Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel LeVillage St Barth

Address: Baie de St-Jean, St. Jean 97133, St Barthelemy (Formerly Hotel le Village St Jean)
Location: Caribbean > St Barthelemy > St. Jean
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in St. Jean
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel LeVillage St Barth 4*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Formerly known as “LeVillage St Jean”, “LeVillage St Barth”, a true hallmark of the island, is a charming and authentic hotel. Nestled in the heart of a lavish tropical garden with fantastic views of the Bay of Saint-Jean, a short walk to many shops, 9 restaurants and the #1 beach, “LeVillage” combines tranquility and comfortable living in a true “St. Barth” kind of way. The Hotel offers Classic Rooms - spacious Standard Cottages - Superior Cottages - exquisitely renovated Luxury Suites and Villas - many have well appointed kitchens and large outside dining and seating patios with sensational views. Having recently reached the four star classification level, LeVillage continues to be known as the best value on the island.The many amenities - the beautiful infinity swimming pool, the Jacuzzi, the Wellness Cottage, the Fitness Room – will all seduce you and, like many of our guests, you will want to return year after year. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Le Village St Jean Hotel

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