If you're a "resort" kinda person, this place is for you. Everything is done for you here, and you really don't even have to think about a thing, except what you will eat next.
It's a large resort property, once owned (as much of St John was) by Rockefeller, pristinely manicured, that has been around since the 40s when it's first origins of a "resort" took hold (with just 12 cottages). St John, and Caneel Bay in particular, have quite an interesting history recorded, dating back to the 600s. I suggest reading about it while you're planning your trip; it will make it that much more enjoyable when you see any of the numerous plantation buildings throughout the island, and understand their history. The land backs up to the US National Park, so it's basically uninhabited all around. Very peaceful, quiet, beautiful.
We were there for a wedding, and as the "stateside" pseudo-wedding planner, I had the coordination duties. Of course, since this was my family, I was super picky. And all of my needs were very well met by Vera Payne, the special events director. She had a staff of people at my disposal at all times. There wasn't a thing I didn't get immediately after I asked for it. She had everything planned out from the transportation into Cruz for the rehearsal dinner to the way the tables would be set up for dinner. If I had a change, it was met, delightfully.
While I LOVED the property, and the attentiveness of the special events folks, the resort falls short for what you pay for a room. In Mexico, I can stay at a Viceroy resort for just about $100 more (and this was LOW SEASON RATES for Caneel Bay, mind you), and get all meals, drinks, a butler, special services, a large villa with the most comfy bed I've slept in ever, a beautiful shower, an outdoor shower, and a dipping pool (and did I mention the dude who cleans my sunglasses at the pool? yah - it came with one of those too!). The rooms at Caneel Bay were nothing special, dirty, with uncomfy beds and cramped spaces. There was a tiny loveseat sized bench with a cushion built into a corner - but we used that as a place to put our day packs. SO, literally, there was no place to sit. Odd. The bathrooms were also a disappointment.
There are a few restaurant alternatives to choose from (see reviews: Caneel Beach Terrace Restaurant: yelp.com/biz/caneel-beac… & Beach Bar at Caneel Bay: yelp.com/biz/caneel-beac…). There's also the gelateria / coffee house, called Canella, Turtle Bay Estate House for fine dining, and Zozos, a well known restaurant which used to be in Cruz Bay, also serving fine dining fare. Kids eat for 50% off the menu prices - that's a plus if you have little ones.
Sailboats, Hobies, SUPs, kayaks and some snorkeling gear (not that you would use someone else's snorkeling gear) are available at no charge, or you can book a scuba, sailing or fishing trip.
In a nutshell, would I go back? Probably not unless their rates were at least half of what they are now. It's just not worth the price.
- Also Known As:
- Caneel Bay, a Rosewood Hotel Caneel Bay
- Caneel Bay, a Rosewood Hotel
- Caneel Bay
- Caneel Bay a Rosewood Hotel
- Caneel Bay a Rosewood Resort
- Caneel Bay Resort St John
- Caneel Bay St John
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Travelocity, Amex, Orbitz, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Tingo, TripOnline SA, Venere, Agoda, Otel and Jetsetter so you can book your Caneel Bay Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.