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“Great vacation at the Westin St JOhn” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Westin St. John Resort & Villas

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Westin St. John Resort & Villas
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   P.O. Box 8310, Cruz Bay 00831, St. John   |  
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Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Cruz Bay
e stroudsburg,pa
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great vacation at the Westin St JOhn”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2014

We rented a Hillside Studio Villa at the Westin St John. The villa was perfect - had a full kitchen and easy walk to the beach. The Westin property was beautiful - landscaping and set up. They have umbrellas and palm trees on the beach so you can be in the shade. The beach side cafe and restaurant had great food. The main restaurant had a bar or full menu. We ate there every night. They did offer shuttles into Cruz Bay also. The property is under going rennovations near the dock which did not interfer with us at all. We would definitely recommend the Westin for a great tropical vacation place.

  • 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
    • 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.
GMMikeRyan, General Manager at Westin St. John Resort & Villas, responded to this review, March 19, 2014
Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback regarding your recent stay with us at the Westin St. John. We appreciate your kind words and were very happy to hear that you enjoyed your Studio Villa, our private beach, and dining options. We appreciate your recommendations and hope you will return for another great vacation. Thank you again.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2014

Loved St. Johns. We were staying in St. Thomas and rented a jeep and took a car ferry to St. Johns for two days. We stayed in a Villa at the Westin which was outstanding. Full kitchen, beautiful views, washer&dryer and a comfy bed. The property was under construction at the time and we decided to explore the Island rather than stay on the resort itself so I can't fully tell you about the resort area. Highly recommend renting a car and checking out the whole Island. We loved turks bay but very crowded and hard to find parking so we went one day and also went to Cinnamon bay which was just as beautiful and right up the road. On our journey to the top of the mountain we ventured off on hiking trails that brought you to remote areas. We snorkeled at salt bay which had a short hike down and was not as crowded. Both days we drove up to skinny legs for lunch which had a great shop for souvenirs … I honestly think better than town. The views up there are spectacular and on the way we saw goats, donkeys and mongoose running around. The driving is not for the meek … it is kind of nerve-wracking but we got the hang of it. We will definitely go back. The towns are cute and quaint, the views were breath-taking, perfect weather & the people there were friendly and helpful. Highly recommend the Westin for it's location and beautiful villas. I gave this four stars for the short time I did spend at the pool area as it was under construction. I also think this resort needs more options for dining.

Room Tip: We didn't get a chance to see the regular hotel rooms but the villas are great and have everythi...
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  • 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GMMikeRyan, General Manager at Westin St. John Resort & Villas, responded to this review, March 19, 2014
We were glad to hear that you enjoyed your two-night stay with us and although it was short, I was glad to hear it was sweet. We encourage our guests to get off property and explore the unparalleled beauty of St. John, so kudos to you for doing so. It sounds like you had many adventures snorkeling and hiking and that you plan to return to explore even more. We also appreciate your suggestions for more dining options. We are currently renovating Beach Café, our beachside restaurant that serves breakfast and dinner. We are also working on a restaurant for the former Cruz Bay Prime Restaurant, located above the lobby. As always, Snorkel’s is available for lunch at the pool and was recently renovated with the pool area. We hope to welcome you back to see our improvements firsthand and we certainly hope you’re able to stay longer next time. Thanks again for your review.
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Toledo, Ohio
Top Contributor
110 reviews 110 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
87 helpful votes 87 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

My group of 4 traveled to St John in January and stayed at the Westin St John Villas. We had a two bedroom villa. The villa itself was very clean and spacious - very comfortable for 4 people. It had a nice kitchen and patio area. We rented it through a villa rental service based on the island. Only thing that kept this from being a 5 star review for me was the fact that the villa was located across the street from the main property/pool/beach. However, it was very quiet, and there is a golf-cart shuttle service that will very promptly transport you down the hill and across the road to the main property. The one downside is that it was HARD to find a golf cart to take you back - one time I spent 15 minutes waiting for one to pass by the pool area to take me back to my villa. When the new villas are complete on the main property a lot of these issues will be resolved I feel.

There is a small grocery up the road (walkable) and the Starfish Market is not far either for more variety as far as food goes. We had breakfast in the villa most mornings, and actually cooked in the villa for dinner a couple of nights. The villas also have a small shared pool that you can easily walk to - it also has a grill available. I definitely recommend having your own vehicle - to get into town you need it - even though it is only about a 5 minute drive. There are ample taxi trucks but they would definitely add up if you needed to use one every time you went to Cruz Bay for dinner or to the North Shore beaches. Having a car allowed us to really explore all of the island from Waterlemon to Coral Bay to Salt Pond.

Only other note is that you will find when you land in St Thomas that the Westin has a ferry directly to the property - this isn't bad if you are not renting a car or if you plan to go back and forth a couple of times to St Thomas, but otherwise it is MUCH cheaper to catch a shared van to Red Hook and take the hourly ferry across to Cruz Bay.

Was a little worried b/c of the reviews talking about construction. There is still construction ongoing particularly to a couple of the restaurant areas which decreases the on property food options, but the pool remodel was done VERY well - ample seating, comfortable cushions, lovely water feature - was impressed with this. The pool food was quite good, but for evening dining I recommend driving into Cruz Bay - there are so many great options there!

Another great feature was a Free-cycle program that they have at the Westin. There is a small building where you can go to find beach chairs, beach toys, etc that other guests purchased but were unable to take along with them when they went home. It saved us money on renting chairs at the beaches and gave us something to sit on at the beaches that didn't have chair rental.

Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GMMikeRyan, General Manager at Westin St. John Resort & Villas, responded to this review, March 19, 2014
Thank you for sharing your review and for choosing The Westin St. John. It sounds as though you enjoyed your recent stay and that you were able to take advantage of many of the amenities provided on property. We were pleased to hear that you enjoyed the convenience of your villa, our newly renovated pool area and our Free Cycle program. Thanks again for posting your feedback on Trip Advisor. We hope to welcome you back in the near future.
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Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

This was our third vacation at the Westin St. John and each visit has been better than the one before (see my 2007 review).

The service is exceptional and the resort gorgeous. Even though the property is undergoing extensive renovation near the waterfront, it did not interfere with our stay, and we were in a villa overlooking the construction! In fact, my husband overheard a foreman chastising one of his workers for swinging his hammer before 9AM. We cannot wait to see the results next time we visit.

We have stayed in a Hillside Villa and the last two times in a two bedroom Bay Vista Villa; we prefer the latter. Bay Vista is quiet, the villas are lovely while not too far away from resort amenities. We also recommend booking your rental vehicle with O'Connor's on site. They will match rental prices "in town" and it is so much more convenient.

We are already planning our next St. John vacation :)

  • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GMMikeRyan, General Manager at Westin St. John Resort & Villas, responded to this review, March 19, 2014
Many thanks for your review and for choosing The Westin St. John for the third time. I was pleased to learn that each visit gets better and better and that our current renovation did not affect your stay. I too love our Bay Vista Villas, and we look forward to welcoming you back for a fourth stay in your favorite accommodations. Thanks again for your review.
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Chicago
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2014

We often rely on Tripadvisor reviews and would like to contribute to the community. (Thank you to others who have contributed their opinions.) Since this is a big resort and takes quite a commitment, I will endeavor to do a full review.

SUMMARY:
We had a very pleasant and memorable week. The accommodations were upscale, the resort was full featured, and the service was very good, exceptional you might say. We would definitely stay again.

NOTE ON CONSTRUCTION:
Compliments to the Westin for making their ongoing refreshing of the resort very unobtrusive. It was perhaps the least obtrusive hotel remodel I have seen. I can sure tell you stories about other hotel remodels. If you want to know exactly what is being impacted by the construction, check their website, then give them a call if you need clarification. The only common area under construction during our visit was the Prime Restaurant. I found the Beachside Restaurant much preferable anyway. My wife is very annoyed by hotel remodels and she commented how unobtrusive the Westin’s remodel was.

TIME OF YEAR:
New Years week, so this would be a very busy time for the resort and the island. It was our second stay and our 5th or so visit to the island. We made our travel plans at the last minute so that had something of an affect on our trip. Small island + busy time means make your plans early if possible. Although we started our planning a little late, we had a great trip.

FRONT DESK/CHECK-IN:
Arrived on a fairly quite afternoon and the check-in process was very quick, efficient, and welcoming. They made sure to ask for my SPG/Westin number, which was not on the reservation. Bell service was very available and helpful. We stayed in the Bay Vista Villas building 24. I was surprised how close the parking lot is to the Bay Vista Villas given how large the resort is. Like any beach community, parking is an important issue on St. John USVI.

ACCOMMODATIONS:
We stayed in a 3-bed/ 3-bath Bay Vista Villa. Since each bedroom had is own en-suite bathroom it worked perfectly for our small group of two adults and a teenage boy and girl. That is fortunate since it was about the only accommodation available at the time. Being a Westin, the bedding was great. Interestingly, they do not provide daily housekeeping for the Villas, just a midweek refresh. The good part is not having to clear out of the room for housekeeping every day, the bad part is having to wash your own towels or call for replacements. The washer dryer unit in the Villa was very, very helpful. I would have packed less if I had known how helpful it was to have a washer and dryer.

The unit had a full kitchen with full size appliances and a huge dining area. The table could probably seat 8 easily. The condo has a few packs of laundry detergent but only one pack of dishwashing detergent, so bring your own.

We stayed in a 2nd floor unit. Unfortunately, it was the closest to the stairs so the balconies were spacious but not very private. A unit farther from the stairs/elevator would be more private. It is too bad the units don’t have much of a view of the cliff side they are nestled against because that is unique. The 3-bedroom Villa had a deck off the living room and also the master bedroom. The master bedroom deck lacked privacy so we did not use it much. We found our building to be quiet. The ceiling did transmit the noise of the large group above us. We did not like the way the Bay Vista Villas 3-bdrm was chopped up, however, the 3 ensuite full baths were very necessary for our party.

The master bathroom was spacious and had 2 separated sinks, a large shower, and a huge bathtub that we never used. Probably a little wasted space here that I would have rather had in the bedroom. The water closet was simply frosted glass. I would have preferred more privacy.

Since this resort has everything from king bed hotel rooms (most of which are being remodeled) to 3-bedroom villas, you biggest decision will be deciding what type of accommodation is best for you.

VIEW:
Not much of a view, but we knew this going in. Building 24 of the Bay Vista Villas is a 3-story building. We don’t like ground floor rooms although some people find them preferable since they have two nice walkout patios instead of balconies. You would assume the 3rd floor rooms would have the best views. Since the lovely landscaping has matured, the 2nd floor rooms did not have much of a view except for the grounds, the tops of trees, and a tiny slice of water on the horizon. At least the sun set directly over this view, which was nice to see from the couch in the living room. FYI, the view side of the villa was all windows and glass, which was nice. That is the downside of the Bay Vista Villas, not much of a view from the 2nd floor and you would assume no ocean view from the ground floor.

The resort is quite large. The rooms, many of which are being remodeled, have ocean views and ocean side accommodations. We did the trade-off of more space/bathrooms in a Villa for a less dramatic view.

THE RESORT GROUNDS:
Let’s face it – this is where the resort shines. The grounds are fantastic, picturesque and peaceful. The pool complex was even more amazing than the photos. Our teenagers used it a lot for sunning, however we never used it with some of the best beaches in the world a 15-minute drive away. During peak times, the Snorkels bar and grill at the pool, can be very slow. The only time I dined there, was during a lull in the afternoon and the service was about 20 minutes. We sat a table that was about 20 feet from the pool and 20 feet from the beach. Can you think of a more perfect place for a lazy lunch?

The beach at the Westin is much better than you would think. I think it is underrated. They have plenty of beach chairs and umbrellas and also a few extremely comfortable hammocks. How difficult a choice is that? Whether to sit on a beach lounge chair or a poolside lounge chair, or perhaps a table at the lounge? They also have water sports rentals. However, regarding watersports, during peak times, the small bay is very crowded with boats etc., so I don’t think it is that attractive for watersports. During nonpeak times, I would think it would be much nicer. In general, I found there water sports rentals to be a little old. If you can afford the Westin, you can afford to go to Cinnamon Bay beach and rent a kayak or hobie in my opinion. There are plenty of photos of the resort on tripadvisor. It is really as nice, or better, than the photos you have seen. Perhaps the grounds at the Grand Hyatt on Kauai are a little better but the grounds at the Westin are very nice. As you know, the only two resorts on the island with a beach are the Westin and Caneel Bay. Gallows Point Resort has a snorkel, i.e., rocky oceanfront.

The resort is spread out and has a few hills. However, staff with golf carts were very willing to offer rides. Show up at the front of the resort with a bag of groceries and it won’t be more than a few seconds before someone shows up in a cart to give you a lift. Usually, I preferred to walk barefoot in the grass instead of riding in a golf cart. Small criticism: The golf carts were gas powered. Most resorts I have stayed at have used quieter electric carts. Apparently eclectic carts are in the plans.

This is a non-smoking resort. Smoking is allowed in very limited areas and it is apparently strictly enforced. I thought it was great since cigarette smoke really bothers my allergies and is one of the few things that triggers my asthma. Come to think of it, it feels like most of the island of St. John is non-smoking. Personally, I think the resort should endeavor to make a more picturesque designated smoking area, so that those with the habit would have a nice place to indulge.

CONCIERGE:
The concierge desk is always staffed. I found the concierge desk to be very knowledgeable and extremely helpful. When the resort is full, it is sometimes a wait for information because they spend a lot of time with each guest. They know every restaurant on the island.

RESTAURANTS
I thought the restaurants at the resort were nice. My favorite was the Beach Café with tables 10 yards from the water. I thought the food was as upscale as you would like although the fine dining restaurant, Prime, is closed for remodeling. I preferred the casual elegance of the waterside Beach Café anyway. I thought the restaurant service was great. Those ladies made me feel pampered.

As mentioned, my son ate at the Snorkels poolside café and he said it took way too long for lunch. I ate there a short time later and it was fine. As mentioned above, this was a very busy time for the resort.

The Deli was not very well stocked and was minimal at best. I like a resort with a full coffee bar. The Westin did not have one, or I could not find it.

Our family loves the restaurants in Cruz Bay so we seldom ate dinner at the resort. I think I would have like to have one or two more meals at the resort and a few more drinks at the waterside bar.

OTHER AREAS
The exercise room was medium sized and well equipped. We went to the Spa for a massage. The staff was very good, however considering the premium price of the Spa services, it was not very upscale. We heard that these areas will be remodeled in the next few years as part of the resort makeover. If you are a serious spa goer you will be disappointed

The swim shop and gift shop is very large and has pretty much anything you need for a beach vacation.

In my opinion, the resort was very clean and our condo was well maintained. In fact, the sidewalk and doormat outside our front door was cleaned of sand daily. Don’t be surprised if your room door is wet, as they wash down the outside hallways daily.

SERVICE:
We found the service at the resort to be outstanding. I have read a few reviewers who found fault at times with the service. We found the service to be consistently outstanding. The service was prompt, professional, and warm. OK, once a young woman at the front desk at night was a little curt and unfriendly about a service request. However, the request could not have been accomplished faster.

A small note about interacting with folks on some islands: It is customary to say hello and greet a person properly before making a request. If you are from the Midwest, this will come naturally. Keep this in mind and you will find a lot a warm and friendly people on St. John. Besides, isn’t that why you come to St. John because of the relaxed vibe?

LOCATION
One drawback of the resort is that it is about an 8-minute drive to the center of Cruz Bay. It is not walking distance. We love the quaint and funky town of Cruz Bay and ate in town most nights. As in any beach town, parking is a hassle in Cruz Bay. We parked most nights at the Wharfside Village and walked to our destination. It was $3/hour. Always double-check what time the parking lot closes at night out of courtesy. Cruz Bay is a nice walking around town. The Westin has cabs readily available in front. Since they are safari style, they want to get a full load before heading off. I think this would test my patience. It is the same 15 minute drive to the national park beaches as most places in town.

There is a nice small food store a few blocks from the resort. Although it is not the largest in town, I think it has a better upscale selection than the other big market although some would disagree. The close market has a 15 percent discount for Westin guest on orders over $50.

THE ISLAND
I don’t think a review of an island resort would be complete without a discussion of the island itself. St. John USVI is probably our favorite Caribbean Island although there are so many great islands and a few not so great islands. The beaches are wonderful, and since most are US national parks, they are very open to the public. Trunk Bay Beach might have the best sand of any beach in the world. We managed to get to the beach every day except New Years Day. A favorite topic is which is your favorite beach? I think the group consensus was Maho, Trunk Bay, Cinnamon Bay, Hawksnest. I think most locals would say would say Cinnamon, Trunk, Hawksnest, Maho. Since these beaches are on national park land, they are not dominated be an onsite resort and are very accessible to public beach goers. FYI, the national park beaches are non-smoking except in designated areas.

The only drawback is the town and beaches can get very crowded when the large cruise ships dock on St. Thomas (usually on Tuesday and Wednesday). Check the Internet for the list of cruise ships in port and plan you days accordingly.

St. John is lower key than many Caribbean islands. For example, we found Antigua to be rather uptight. We like how laidback most of the folks and businesses in St. John are. It is large enough island to have a few things to do, and small enough to feel personal. If you take a drive to the west side of the island and sometimes on the east side, don’t be surprised if the cafes and shops have run out of certain foods or have decided to close early or stay open late because they were in the mood. If that kind of informality bothers you, you may not have the proper vibe for this island.

Since St. John is difficult to get to, there does not seem to be a problem with transients. We have never felt unsafe on the island. When on vacation, we like to get in the car and drive to some beach, shop or restaurant we have never been to before. St. John is conducive to that type of vacation. I have heard some people say they would be bored to death after a few days at the beach. This trip we spent 7 nights on the island and it was way too short.

I am not sure how to say this, but on some islands, such as Antigua, we felt we were constantly negotiating the level of service, and that folks were always trying to take advantage of you. We have never felt that way on St. John. FYI, we have never stayed on St. Thomas.

GETTING THERE:
We rented a car in St. Thomas and took the car ferry since no rental cars were available in St. John. The only thing I don’t like about that is getting accustom to driving on the left side of the road while driving from the airport to the Red Hook Ferry port which has a lot of traffic. At least we didn’t have to load/unload bags at the car ferry. In my opinion, there is no easy way to get from the airport to St John regardless of where you are staying. The Westin has a personalized ferry service but it is pricy. If you don’t like to do things on your own, I would suggest spending the extra on the Westin Ferry service. On our next visit to the island I am not sure how we will travel from the airport to the resort. Probably cab to people ferry, and then take a cab to hotel. We usually pick up our rental car after we get to the condo, so Westin’s on premise car rental would be convenient. Some people say the rental car company at the Westin is more expensive but I would find the convenience more than makes up for it. However, they were out of cars during our stay.

SUMMARY
We had a great and memorable week. There are pros and cons with every resort/condo/hotel on St. John. We liked the Westin Resort a lot and it worked perfectly for our recent family vacation. We are very likely to stay there again depending on our party makeup and the time of year.

  • Stayed January 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GMMikeRyan, General Manager at Westin St. John Resort & Villas, responded to this review, March 19, 2014
Thank you very much for your extremely detailed review and for taking the time to post it on Trip Advisor. We appreciate your kind words and were very glad to hear you found our renovation unobtrusive, our associates helpful and friendly, your villa accommodations convenient and spacious, and our landscaping pristine. Based on your review, you and your family had a wonderful stay, and we can’t thank you enough for sharing many aspects of your stay – it will certainly help future potential guests with their plans and what to expect when visiting our beautiful island. Thanks again and we truly look forward to your return.
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New Hampshire
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 6, 2014

We returned home to cold and snow on 3/1/14 after spending another week in paradise. This was our third trip to the Westin property to stay in the Virgin Grand Villas. My husband and I were married on the property in 1994 when it was the Hyatt. We returned in 2004 and then again last week.This was our first visit in "high" season and we were pleasantly surprised that the resort was as quiet and bucolic as we remember from our "low" season visits. I didn't wander the hotel portion of the property, but it sounds like other reviewers are saying some of the hotel rooms were out of commission due to ongoing renovations. This may explain how uncrowded it felt during our high season week. The renovations go through a good portion of this year (2014) so you may want to check the posted renovation schedule if a certain amenity is important to you. "Resort"- We have stayed many places in the 20 years since we got married and we still love the Westin St. John. It is quiet and laid back and beautiful. If you are expecting a true "resort", you will not find that here. There are limited activities/dining options. Tennis, one decent pool (The shared villa pools are very small. I have not had the opportunity to stay in a 3-bedroom villa with a private pool.), a playground, and a workout room. Most people visit St. John for the beautiful beaches and don't intend to spend much time at their accommodations. The Westin beach is pretty poor by St. John standards. I would say to plan on 1 day on resort during a week-long vacation and then sneak in some late afternoon dips in the pool. There are free non-motorized water sports offered by the on-site Cruz Bay Watersports, but these are honestly not very fun on this beach. You have to wend your way through all the boats moored in the harbor. We tried the stand up paddle boards which looked like so much fun when we saw others using them at Cinnamon Bay and Maho Bay. It was actually pretty scary to use them in the Westin Bay as the waves were constantly pushing us toward moored boats and their anchor ropes. There are very few scheduled activities at the Westin and most are geared toward children. I was surprised to find out that there is a fee for almost every activity. It seems shocking to me that a "resort" would charge its $500+ per night guests a $10 fee to play bingo. Really? I have not seen this at other resorts that we have visited. On our last visit there were inflatable play structures in the water at the Westin beach. My 14-year-old remembered them from age 4 and was very disappointed that they were gone. The iguana feeding time -another favorite activity- was also gone. There used to be a bell captain who would arrange golf cart rides for the hillside villa guests. Gone. We trudged up the hill many, many times during the course of our week. The employees manning the golf carts always stopped and asked us if we wanted a ride, but there were simply not enough of them wandering the property to be present every time we wanted to return to our villa. Not a super big deal, but another change since our last visit. (No changes for the good - only for the worse.) We did not expect a resort experience though - so none of these issues were a big deal to us. We did book an excursion through Cruz Bay Watersports to the Baths of Virgin Gorda, Cooper Island Beach Club, and snorkeling at Norman Island. It was fun and the staff are super- friendly and accommodating. The trip was pretty much a quick run through at each attraction - all guided and strictly timed. Wasn't really our cup of tea, but was still fun. Just the experience of motoring through the Sir Francis Drake Channel was beautiful. If I had to do it over again, I would rent out a captained boat so I could stop when and where I wanted and set my own pace. Food - Not surprisingly the food on site is very expensive as it is on the rest of the island. (A side note - The gift shop seemed much more reasonably priced and well-stocked with beach vacation necessities and inexpensive souvenirs.) Check out the Mango Deli for friendly staff and simple meal/snack options. Take a short stroll down the road to the small market for provisions. Some things here were a little bit more expensive then home, but on average expect to pay about double what you would at home. We crammed as many snacks and other non-perishables into our suitcases as would fit to minimize the amount of groceries we would need to buy on island. Villas - We have never stayed in the hotel portion of the property so I can't comment about the hotel rooms. We also forgot to check out the newer (much more expensice) Bay Vista villa. Our hillside villa was very clean. We had people above us and also on at least one side, but we heard very little noise. Although the villas had been renovated since our last stay, there were definitely minor condition issues like cracked tiles, fraying carpets, lots of bugs in the kitchen. The cleaning staff only came once. When they replaced the towels they left us without hand towels for the remainder of the week and they took every last one of our grocery store plastic bags that I had secured under a bowl on the kitchen table. These were intended for carrying wet clothing back home in. People shower a lot on a beach vacation and we really would have appreciated fresh towels every day. Instead we laundered our own in the small washer/dryer combo. Also - a clothesline over the tub would really help with all the wet towels and swimsuits. Again not major issues, but could easily be addressed. The bed was comfortable and the bathroom spacious and clean. Basic timeshare villa with impressive views of the Westin harbor and iguanas in the treetops every morning! If I were paying the Westin rack rate for this villa, I would have expected much more and been disappointed. We rented for the week from a timeshare owner at a reasonable (by St. John standards) nightly rate ~$300/night for a high season studio villa. Do yourself a favor and rent someone's timeshare week. You will pay a lot less money than the Westin rack rate for a hotel room and have the convenience of a villa with a kitchen to save food dollars and more room to spread out in. All-in-all a fun a relaxing vacation at a nice quiet property in paradise with limited amenities. We will be back again.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GMMikeRyan, General Manager at Westin St. John Resort & Villas, responded to this review, March 19, 2014
Thank you very much for choosing The Westin St. John for the 3rd time and for your detailed review regarding your recent stay. We truly appreciate you taking the time to review so many specifics around the resort and sharing them with potential future guests. I will share your feedback regarding the cost of Activities with our Director of Recreation so that he can evaluate the cost and hopefully improve on this for the future. Please let your son know that we are working on replacing the inflatable trampolines in our bay. Due to permitting issues, we had to remove them, but we are working very hard to place them back on our beach, as we know how much our guests enjoyed them. Unfortunately, we had to cease the iguana feeding, as it was posing a problem with the over-populating of iguanas on property. While some guests do enjoy the iguanas, others do not, and we were forced to try and reduce the number of iguanas on property. I have noted the concerns you mention regarding an increase in available shuttles and your Virgin Grand Villa and will share them with my respective Management team. Thank you again and we look forward to your fourth stay with us. Hopefully by then, the inflatable trampolines will be back in the water.
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Nashua NH
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3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

Overall we really enjoyed our stay at the Westin St. John, but guests should understand that this property seems to be transitioning from a hotel to a time share property. With the conversion to villa time shares, we found a few shortcomings. In particular, there are limited breakfast options (no breakfast buffet, even on a sunday), and no fine dining restaurant. I think most guests use their villa to cook, and so options for hotel guests are very limited. Not a deal breaker, but not something we have experienced at other resorts.

On the positive side, the hotel seemed ghostly (three buildings empty, still under construction), so no problems finding chairs near the pool or on the beach. No corporate events, weddings or noisy parties, and nightime was incredibly peaceful. We were in building 10 right on the beach, and away from any construction noise.

The grounds and outside were immaculate, but despite the renovation, the lobby is tired and old looking. We could not see much new (we stayed here 20 years ago when it was the Hyatt), except there was new tile around the pool. Our room was refreshed just this past August we were told, but the furnishings in our room were starting to look a bit worn.

We found Teri at the vacation service desk to be helpful and friendly, and Sue at the pool hut always had a smile for us. The Westin ferry service works well, but pack a day bag as it can take hours for your luggage to travel from the Westin dock to your room. We were a bit disappointed that we could not checkin to our room until 5pm, it had not yet been cleaned. This property does not have an in-transit space for guests, so after a long day of travel, there was no place to change or relax, other than at the pool.

The island is a great vacation destination, and It would be hard not to enjoy yourself at this property. It will be interesting to see how it handles the transition from hotel to a hotel/time share hybrid. With just a little more attention to detail this property could be much better than an average resort.

Room Tip: If staying in a hotel room, building 10 on the beach was nice and quiet, and as far as you can get f...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Westin St. John Resort & Villas

Address: P.O. Box 8310, Cruz Bay 00831, St. John
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > U.S. Virgin Islands > St. John > Cruz Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Cruz Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Westin St. John Resort & Villas 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on 1,200 feet of private beach The Westin Resort St. John, USVI is a tropical retreat that's easy to reach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Westin St. John Resort & Villas Hotel Cruz Bay
Westin St. John Resort And Villas
Westin Cruz Bay
Cruz Bay Westin
St John Westin
Westin St. John Resort & Villas Cruz Bay

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