You live and learn...a statement that not only applies to bad experiences.
I reviewed the WSJ in 2010 and gave it 4 stars. Our last trip was even better.
First of all, we stayed in a Villa rather than a normal hotel room. I CANNOT RECOMMEND THIS APPROACH MORE HIGHLY. You can either rent a villa from the Westin, which will cost you a fortune, or you can rent one directly from an owner. The Westin sells timeshare units to people on vacation and when those people can't use their villas, they rent them to private people directly through websites like timeshare users group or redweek. We rented a 2BR villa for $2400 for seven nights...no taxes or resort fees because the owners pay that in their maintenance fees. It was beautiful and slept two couples easily...could sleep 6 adults or 4 adults and 4 kids with the pull out couch. Being able to cook meals, especially breakfast and lunch, really saved us money. It was also great to have a full sized frig, and have room to spread out was great. (1200 sq. ft according to Westin). Two things to be aware of: the villas are across the street and uphill, but there is free golf cart transport to and from the mail hotel, and renting from an owner is not like a hotel room you can cancel without penalty. If you rent it and don't go, you are out of luck.
Second great decision we made was to rent a car at the STT airport and take the car ferry to St. John. We got to STT early, so we went shopping, had lunch, went to the grocery store, then drove to the Red Hook car ferry. The ferry ride was easy and unlike taking the Westin transportation, your luggage is in your control the entire time. Having a car on St. John was awesome. There are so many once in a lifetime views and beaches on St. John's north shore and because we had a car, we saw so much of it. (You can take taxi's, but beach or site hopping is much harder and you are on someone else's schedule.)
We spent about 5 hours at Maho Bay, which was an amazing beach with wildlife to look at while snorkling its edges and beautiful relatively coral free sand for swimming. There were maybe six groups of people on the 3/4 mile? long beach. Saw a sting ray, a sea turtle, and tons of fish. It is just heaven.
The resort was in amazing condition as always and I am told there have been lots of refurbishments and upgrades since last year's flooding. Beach bar food and drinks are awesome. I recommend going into town for dinners...there are many great options that are better and cheaper than what you can get on the resort.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for your consistent loyalty to Starwood Hotels and Resorts and also The Westin St. John. We sincerely appreciate you taking the time to leave a review regarding your recent stay, and I was so pleased to hear that your stay with us continues to exceed your expectations time after time! Thank you for the details regarding the villa accommodations, car rental process, and the breathtaking beaches of St. John. We look forward to welcoming you back very soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.