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“Very, Very Nice” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa

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Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   PO Box 3031- Kings Hill, 00851, St. Croix   |  
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Ranked #3 of 18 Hotels in St. Croix
NEBRASKA
Top Contributor
269 reviews 269 reviews
175 hotel reviews
Reviews in 212 cities Reviews in 212 cities
420 helpful votes 420 helpful votes
“Very, Very Nice”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2014

Almost everything was truly wonderful at this resort. To start with, the location is perfect. It is located on a remote, isolated part of the island, tucked into a cove, surrounded by mountains. The grounds have beautiful tropical flowers and trees. The beach is small, but adequate, surf varied. There were nice, new beach chairs.
The resort was uncrowded, quiet, and relaxing.
The rooms were some of the nicest I've ever stayed in. All rooms are suites, with a living room, 2 TV's, kitchenette, giant walk-in closet, gigantic double vanity, and separate toilet and shower area. Shower was huge and had a seat. Only bad thing was that there wasn't a door to separate the shower/toilet area from the rest of the bathroom.
All rooms had a large screened porch to keep the bugs and critters away. There are many small lizards and mongoose roaming about. The thing I didn't like about the porches was that they didn't have a door to access the beach directly.. However, this would only be helpful on the oceanfront rooms. We thought the seats were a bit low and needed a little more padding.
The beds were very comfortable. The pillows were gigantic, but unfortunately weren't firm enough for me.
Our maid came promptly at 9AM every morning except one, and serviced our room while we were at breakfast.
The staff was always busy, keeping everything neat. All of the staff at the resort were very, very friendly. We have been to many resorts in the Caribbean, and can honestly say that the staff at this resort is the friendliest and quickest to respond that we've ever encountered in the Caribbean. ( They aren't on island time, as they say. )
The food choices were a bit limited if staying more than a few days.
About half of the menu was a bit odd. More variety is needed.
The Friday night pirate buffet was excellent! The crab legs were the best I've ever had!! Side dishes were also delicious. They really ought to have this all weekend. The show began with several fire dancing gypsies who gave an excellent performance! Then there were 3 mocko jumbies who really didn't do much but dance with the audience. Music for the show was WAY TOO LOUD!!! Otherwise, there was nightly entertainment by the bar, someone different every night. They all played at the perfect volume, and quit before it got too late.
To see the island you will need to rent a car at the airport, as they no longer have car rental on-site. I'd recommend a Jeep. There really isn't a lot to see. 2 days is plenty to see the sights.
Overall, the resort is a great place to get away and relax. We drove past the other hotels on the island and this one looked to be the nicest.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
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547 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (237)
Date | Rating
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English first
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2014

I want so badly to be head over heels raving about this place. There are so many good things going for it. But so many things that need desperate improvement. It depends on your priorities. If you want a beautiful private place this is it. But beware you will also have to deal with your room not being cleaned each day, electricity going out intermittently. If you are flexible about these things this is a wondrously pretty property, staff are nice, it is more remote, so be aware of that.

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nancy W, Director of Sales at Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 13, 2014
Hello,
I'm sorry to hear you weren't head over heels about the resort! I'm surprised that you did not receive daily housekeeping as the rooms are supposed to be cleaned on a daily basis. This was an error and I do apologize. Sorry to hear as well that you experienced a power outage during your stay. Unfortunately that is not under our control...It doesn't happen very often, but when you are on an island, you have to deal with such inconveniences once in a while.
I hope you will visit other Marriott properties that you may find a better fit for you and thank you or taking the time to share your feedback with us, we do value hearing about your stay, the good and the bad.

Warmly,
Nancy Williams
Dir. of Sals
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Washington DC, District of Columbia
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2014

It's taken me a while to write this review, but only because I've been on Island Time since our stay at Carambola. Given this brutal winter, we booked a spontaneous New Years trip and decided on the US Virgin Islands as my passport recently expired (shame on me, I know). It also looked like the best options were a Flight & Hotel package I found for either Carambola or the Buccaneer. I'm glad we chose the Renaissance, though, as it lives up to the Marriott standards. We really just wanted a beach, palm trees, a little adventure, and a lot of sunshine...well, we got all of these and more on our fabulous 4-day stay!

From the moment we arrived, we felt at ease and more than welcome. We were greeted by Jackie at the front desk with a smile and rum punch, and check-in was very smooth. My luggage got stuck in St. Thomas as we had to take a Cape Air connection and rather than waste time going back to the airport, the receptionist was kind enough to send a car to retrieve my bag. This was an "above and beyond" gesture to me, and my bag was waiting in our room when we returned after a walk on the beach/dinner at the hotel bar. I had a zesty shrimp salad and my boyfriend had a burger (a cheeseburger in paradise is mandatory). There were two local cats running around the outdoor tables and some people were rolling their eyes or shooing them away, but we thought they were really sweet. It felt like we were in someone's home.

In terms of accommodations, we had a lower level suite on the right wing of the resort if you're facing the water (room 44, maybe?) and my absolute favorite feature was the screened-in porch with cozy patio couches overlooking the palm trees and Caribbean sea just a stone's throw from our door. As other reviewers have noted, you can literally hear the waves crashing and feel the cool Caribbean breeze at night. You could also hear the Coqui frogs - aptly named for their high pitched "coqui" mating call - and that is probably the only negative note of our entire stay as they would croak for HOURS at night, between 2 and 6am. Aside from this, we slept very well and could solve the problem by just closing the inner doors to the porch. Our room had all of the usual appliances, i.e. coffee area, fridge, plates, etc. My boyfriend was very excited about the two large flatscreens in the room to follow the NCAA bowl games, but in the end we really only watched TV one night. Also, the bathrooms are HUGE and gorgeous with granite, clean tub and tile, and a separate walk-in closet area to store our things.

To celebrate the new year and just being in the islands, we found ourselves at the hotel bar quite a bit, whether grabbing a bucket of Caribe beers for the beach or sipping a pina colada while the reggae band played at night. We only noticed one person taking drink orders on the beach one day, but since this isn't an all-inclusive, commercial type place, we didn't expect that. I have to thank the super sweet hostess, Kishuana, for going out of her way to check on us several times/share some tips on the history and culture of St. Croix. We ran into her at the Pirate Buffet, too - highly recommend booking the buffet as this weekly event is a blast and totally worth it! We met another fun couple staying at Carambola and did the buffet together, which wound up being a fabulous party. The seafood paella was delicious, but I think the music/dancing/men on stilts were my favorite memories of the night on the Saman Room patio. The patio was also a great spot for breakfast, overlooking that spectacular view.

A few additional tips:
1) Definitely recommend renting a car since this end of the island is a bit remote. We rented a Wrangler and went "off-roading" one day through the rainforest on Scenic Rd. (I do not recommend this drive unless you have a Wrangler or an ATV). It was actually really fun, but dangerous as we had no cell service and the roads are really dicey.
2) Part of the hike to the tidal pools is a steep incline, so just wear sneakers...and socks as you may encounter rainforest ants along the way. It's really lovely once you get to the rocky beach on the other end. We brought water, snacks, sunblock, and bug spray, which came in handy!
3) Check out Big Beard's Snorkel tours in Christiansted. The full day outing is $100/pp and the crew takes you to snorkel in an underwater National Park (Buck Island Reef) as well as an island for lunch where they grill burgers, dogs, and fish - bottomless rum punch and water, too!
4) Favorite off-resort restaurants were Off the Wall at Cane Bay for lunch and Rhythms at Rainbow Beach for sunset dinner. I also wanted to try Waves and EAT at Cane Bay - next time!

Room Tip: The second floor rooms have higher ceilings, but the first floor is a closer walk to the hammocks
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nancy W, Director of Sales at Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 5, 2014
Hello and thank you so much for your very detailed review. Sounds like you had some great adventures and that we were a perfect fit for what you were looking for. You mention our rooms as 'Suite", actually ALL our rooms are this same size and layout (And have 2 flatscreens!) They are really a 'wow' when you are expecting a regular sized hotel room.
I sometimes use ear plugs if I'm not interested in hearing the mating calls of the frogs...good news is it's seasonal!!

Thanks again for taking the time to write such a delightful review and I hope you will visit us again,

Warmly,
Nancy Williams
Director of Sales
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Grand Blanc, Michigan
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2014

We booked the Carambola resort for our wedding which took place on 22Feb14.
Working with the coordinator, Ann Wienhiemer, was great and she and the resort went way over the top to make it a special event for us. We were married on the beach and had a beach dinner after the wedding. It was a small wedding with only my wife’s sister and cousin with us.
I cannot say enough about the Ann and how the staff treated us and the things they did to make the day a very special day.
We had ocean view, second floor room which I suggest due to the vaulted ceilings. Food was good, the sales staff, Ann and the Jackie at the front lobby where absolutely the best.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Anderson, Indiana
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2014

St. Croix is one of those wonderful places where absolutely no one owns the beach. But to get to this beach, which our taxi driver took us to, you do have to enter through the Renaissance Resort. It was a beautiful beach with good snorkeling. My friends saw two turtles. Lots of scuba people. It is near the Wall in Cane Bay but west of there so it is not as deep. A tad rough. Probably not the best choice for children. Had a dive shop onsite so it was a good place to try that out. Maybe my next trip. The parts of the resort that I saw were lovely. Saw the staff setting up the wedding in the next review if it was 2/15/14.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
florida
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2014

My daughter just got married at this resort. We had 100 guests, and 4 eating events all catered by the resort. Every event went PERFECTLY. I contribute this all to Sarah Novick with the help of Michael. The food was delicious , the staff was friendly and accommodating, the rooms were lovely and comfortable, and if there was a problem (which there were very few) it was handled immediately. I ordered the cake from Jen Jordan which was beautiful and unbelievably good. I rented chairs and other decorations from Reliable Rental and they even purchased the items for the wedding bags for me.

This hotel is a hidden gem. It is secluded, but that is what I liked about it, and all of the guests felt the same way. What could be better then everyone you love being on a beautiful beach, relaxing and celebrating?

I started planning this event 14 months ago, not realizing that the hotel was going through changes because they were not quite up to par with what is expected from a Renaissance hotel. By the time our weekend event started on February 13, 2014, the management was on the ball and they lived up to the Renaissance name and actually exceeded all my expectations.

It's never easy having a big destination wedding, but if you have someone like Sarah making sure that EVERYTHING is taken care of you, then you can sleep at night knowing that all your wedding dreams will come true.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Severna Park, Maryland
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2014

The Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa on the northern shore of the island is a huge and beautiful resort with a gorgeous private beach and good amenities. The residences are in separate buildings with several large units in each; ours was a 2nd floor beachfront unit (in building 25) at the farthest end of the complex with a veranda that looked out on the beach (which was about 100 feet away), and a full kitchen. I heartily recommend going for beachfront, and 2nd floor gives you a better view, cathedral ceilings, and no footsteps from above.

The L-shaped room was great -- comfy king bed between a window and the beach-side veranda for a breezeway and the sound of the waves, a sleeper sofa, and two flat screen TVs, one in front of each. The kitchen was fully equipped with everything you might need including complimentary coffee and a coffee maker, and the veranda had built-in bench seating. The bathroom was lovely -- double sink with Kohler fixtures on a granite counter-top, and a large walk in shower with a tile bench. The large walk-in closet was a real plus.

Sprawling palm tree-covered grounds were well-maintained by-and-large, with a huge common area swimming pool, hot tub, on-campus dive shop, well-stocked gift and sundries shop, fair-to-middling if expensive restaurant and bar, tennis court and basketball hoop, and a small barely adequate fitness center. The resort-length sand beach is beautiful -- sand-bottomed the farther into the grounds you go, rock-bottomed closer to the main building. It makes for good snorkeling on-site. Lots of chaise-lounges to use, and a Captain Morgan rum bar set up on the beach after 12 noon to about 5 pm.

Overall, we were very pleased with the accommodations and the grounds, and would not hesitate to stay again on that basis.

Service, however, was somewhat wanting: Generally polite and pleasant staff, but slow and inefficient. Inexplicably there are no ice machines on the huge grounds, and each time we asked for ice to be delivered to our unit in a bag for storage in the freezer to complement our fridge's small ice maker, it either never came, or came long after we needed it. Same thing with the request for a light bulb replacement and extra towels -- it took forever. Perhaps because we were at the end of the grounds, housekeeping often didn't get to us until very late in the afternoon, once not until after 5 pm. The pool is open 24/7, but there are no towels at the pool after 5 pm; you have to go to reception to get them, and one night the sole duty clerk was less than happy to do so when I requested two towels.

House wireless service is spotty on the grounds; it works, but not everywhere. As to cell phone service, if you don't have AT&T, fuggedaboud it...but that applies to anywhere on the island. There is one desktop computer in reception to use for basic online searches and for finding and printing travel documents.

If you want to do anything more than stay on the resort grounds, you MUST have a rental car. The resort is at the very end of a narrow and winding road with no shoulder, and the closest "community" -- Cane Bay and its restaurants and bars -- is about 3 miles away. The towns of Christansted and Fredericksted are each about 8 very winding miles and 30 minutes' drive away. If you rent a vehicle, rent an SUV or Jeep as roads in the middle of the island are deeply pot-holed. And you MUST get a GPS, Street and road signs on most of the island are an oxymoron, and driving at night would be impossible without guidance. Nearest supermarkets to stock your kitchen are about 4 miles away.

All-in-all, despite our service nits, the resort was an excellent choice.

Room Tip: Beachfront unit, 2nd floor a must. We were in building 25 and were very happy with it despite the lo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa

Address: PO Box 3031- Kings Hill, 00851, St. Croix
Location: Caribbean > U.S. Virgin Islands > St. Croix
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in St. Croix
#3 On the Beach Hotel in St. Croix
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 150
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Also Known As:
Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort And Spa
Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Hotel St. Croix
Carambola Beach Hotel
Carambola Beach Resort
Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa U.S. Virgin Islands

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