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Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa
Ranked #3 of 16 Hotels in St. Croix
Certificate of Excellence
Cary, Illinois
Level Contributor
24 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“lovely views”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2014

The resort is grand. Great rooms, pool, & food. Only problem is beach - great to sit by but you can not swim because of waves and rocks. Service was wonderful and grounds are magnificant. Pool area was super.

Room Tip: Rooms 60's or 50's less walking
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 137SteveP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,161 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (457)
Date | Rating
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Saint Cloud, Florida
Level Contributor
35 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 17, 2014 via mobile

Had the pleasure of staying at this beautiful hotel for 5 days with 2 girlfriends. The hotel is beautiful and secluded and just what we needed. The location is remote and serene and the beach is perfect. The rooms at the hotel are excellent and the big bonus is the screened in porch which we used quite a bit. The staff was friendly and courteous and made sure they met our expectations and made up for it if they didn't. My one major issue was the food. I was really looking forward to some great Caribbean food and the food at the hotel was very poor and VERY expensive. I ordered the rum cake and it was freezer burned and hard in the middle. Because the hotel is so far away from the main town, you cannot just go to the closest restaurant for a meal. So I recommend either renting a car or buying groceries on your way to the resort since the room has a kitchen. If you are looking for a relaxing retreat to St. Croix, I do recommend this hotel. But do either rent a car or stock up on groceries and avoid the hotel food.

Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
6 Thank ShavoneOnTheGo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, MA
Level Contributor
37 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 16, 2014

This is a long review but I wanted to address previously raised issues and clear up questions we had before we came here for the first time.

We absolutely loved this resort and can't wait to go back. If you like smaller, intimate resorts in a gorgeous setting then this is the place for you. I believe folks that don't like it either haven't really read the resort info and reviews thoroughly or don't know what they really want. This is a quiet place, make your own fun in a relaxing environment.

The rooms are large and well laid out. There are no doors that separate the bed area from the sitting area, which has a couch, coffee table, lamp, desk and flat screen TV. There is also a TV in the bed area, which is a nice choice to have because sometimes you want to lie in bed and sometimes you want to sit on a couch and watch it.

The kitchen came with a full size fridge, 2 burners, dishwasher, sink, hotel style coffee maker (they supply the coffee/filter pods so don't bother bringing any coffee), pots, pans, dishes, glasses, coffee mugs, silverware, cork screw, bottle opener; everything you need really. The bathroom was huge, with a large walk in closet, hair dryer, iron, average toiletries, with a large walk in shower and toilet in a separate space with doors to both the sink/closet area and the bedroom area. In the closet is a safe, flashlight, bug spray and glass candle. I don't believe I've ever seen all of those items in a hotel room, very thoughtful additions. The only downside was that the rooms are very dark with all of the wood and makes it hard to see. The lighting could be improved to include brighter bulbs in the lamps and overhead light/fan combos and a light directly over the kitchen area. Sometimes we had to use the flashlight to see clearly in the kitchen area. The screened porch was a wonderful addition to enjoy.

The resort itself is beautiful, the beach not as large as bigger resorts but perfect for this size resort. Plenty of very new beach chairs and shade under trees and a few canopy areas if you want it. The pool also had new chairs and plenty of beach towels available all of the time.

We felt the food in the restaurants was enjoyable. Quite often we shared a salad, which was quite large and an entree. The 3 slider appetizer were delicious and more than enough for two people. It may not have been 5 star food but it certainly was better than average and fresh tasting. The service was fairly good, several small issues with specific requests but when the mistake was pointed out it was remedied and a free drink was offered. That's more than you get in the States most of the time. There was nightly entertainment from W-Sat, mostly a musician or DJ. It added a nice touch without being overwhelming loud.

We rented a car and enjoyed going into town several times and eating off property at EAT, Rowdy Joe's, Rum Runner and Waves. Driving on the left was not difficult and the cars are set up like American cars, unlike Europe where you drive on the left but sit on the right. We went to Buck Island with Big Beard tours and it was well worth the trip! We also did the Bioluminescent Bay tour at sunset with Virgin Kayak, also fabulous! There are no open container laws so you can walk up to most bars, get a drink at the takeout window and walk around town with it. I would highly recommend renting a car if you are interested in exploring the island or would feel cooped up since the resort is in a remote area and the size of the hills makes it difficult to walk any great length. The resort does offer a shuttle service to town several times a day for a fee if there are at least 2 people.

We went to the grocery store and bought breakfast and snack items, along with good, inexpensive rum.The gift shop also has a variety of food and drinks, including alcohol, in addition to toiletries and necessities, along with the usual gifts. Many items were reasonably priced, similar to buying in town.

We also hiked to the tidal pools. We are in our 50's, fairly active and have hiked before. This is not an easy hike. Wear good shoes, take water and stop to rest. It is a hike over a large hill. The views and the tidal pools are worth it but it is a hour each way so consider your abilities before going.

We felt the service was good. Some individuals better than others, like anywhere. The housecleaner noticed I had put hand towels on the floor on either side of the bed so as not to get any sand in the bed and she replaced them with bath rugs on either side. This was very thoughtful! The biggest improvement I would suggest is making sure all staff have the same information. We often got conflicting answers or misinformation from staff members, only to get different information later. Mostly minor issues but could have changed some decisions we made. A bonus not advertised anywhere is that you can call the United States for NO extra charge from you room phone. We were having trouble with wi-fi and I called to inquire what the phone charges were and was told none. I really couldn't believe it and was prepared for an argument when we got our final bill but there were no phone charges. I can't remember a single hotel who offers that. And our wi-fi issues were fixed when we told them and they had a tech call us back.

All in all, a fabulous place that we can't wait to go back to and we hardly ever repeat a vacation. It may not be a 5 star resort but it doesn't have 5 star prices either. It does have a number of amenities that many other resorts don't have. in my experience, if you let someone know you have an issue and give them a chance to fix it you will be happy with the results. No place is absolutely perfect but if you enjoy beautiful surroundings, unique accommodations and aren't too picky, you will love it! I recommend it without hesitation.

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
9 Thank MEKMOM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilton, Connecticut
Level Contributor
20 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 14, 2014

We had originally reserved a garden view suite through a Marriott promotion but when we checked in we were upgraded to an amazing suite overlooking the ocean. We were in building 1 and we had an upstairs room. The screened porch had lovely, cushioned seating just above the water. The waves crashed onto the rocks and to us, it was very soothing. *Note* if you do not like the loud sounds of waves crashing, this might be to close to the water for you. The room was clean and very spacious with a well stocked kitchenette. My son was not too fond of the sofa bed as it was not comfortable for him but he was able to sleep well on the screened porch.
Others have written that building 1 is too far away from the beach and the restaurants but we didn't feel that way at all. It involved walking, yes, but it was a flat walk on a wide sidewalk.
The resort itself was well maintained and in a wild and beautiful setting. We did find that it seemed to attract a rain cloud every day that we were there, probably because of the rain forest behind the resort. The beach is short but nice with plenty of beach chairs. There is a rock free zone to enter the water at the end of the beach. I found the snorkeling just OK but mainly because it was a little overcast a lot of the time so it was harder to see. If you find flora and fauna interesting, there were many lizards, birds, and even a tree that attracted amazing fruit bats every night to its giant flowers.
We hiked from the resort to the tidal pools and although a mildly strenuous hike, it was worth it. We also rented a jeep which I strongly recommend. The resort is not within a comfortable walking distance of any restaurants. We took the car to different areas of the island every day and we particularly enjoyed Jack's and Isaac's beaches for their wild beauty and their great snorkeling. We also used the car to explore the cities, drive through the rainforest and get to great restaurants. You need a car... don't worry about the wrong side of the road driving. It was easy to master after a day or so. We ate at a lot of different restaurants. I don't particularly care for the food at most resorts, the Carambola being no exception. The food is OK but we really enjoyed e.a.t. and Savant amongst a few local joints that were recommended to us.
If you want a quiet, relaxing home base to explore from or just a remote getaway to get away from it all, I recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank bubbles8892
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
43 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 14, 2014

Two televisions 4 feet from one another in the room. Dark wood, very '70s. Indifferent cleaning. Food just okay, but you don't go to the Caribbean for the food.
But great pool. lovely beach. Best spa I've ever been to in that the price wasn't ridiculous and the facial person didn't leave you lying there for 15 minutes while the gunk on your face dried. She gave you a massage instead while the gunk dried.
There's no luxury feel here -- it's pretty basic. But sometimes that's okay.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank 5228Sigrid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cary, NC
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 12, 2014

This was a perfect little hideaway resort that we really enjoyed. We had read the reviews and most of them were really positive, but we were not prepared for how perfect this place was for us. First, the views of the North Shore from our beach were fantastic from this enclave. I felt like we were looking at the mountains in Hawaii, the way they came down to the water. The beach itself was not big (300-400 yards total?), but it was really pretty and well maintained by the resort. The resort itself was nicely landscaped and taken care of. I am a big fan of resorts, like this one, that have a small footprint and just the right amenities, restaurants and bars, without going overboard. The North Shore location also put us within easy reach of some very cool restaurants and bars such as Eat, Off The Wall and Rowdy Joe's. Here is a more complete review of St. Croix, that I posted on my blog: http://www.openvacationweeks.com/blog/destination-st-croix/

Room Tip: Pay a little extra to get one of the ocean front rooms - well worth it.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mike S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Poughkeepsie, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 8, 2014

Bear with me here, I'm going to have to go geek on you to explain how wonderful this place is.

In the movie Star Trek Generations, there is a space in the universe called the Nexus, defined as a "nonlinear temporal continuum", where reality appears to reshape itself in fulfillment of your innermost wishes. You can only enter this area by throwing yourself into an energy ribbon that crosses the galaxy every 39 years. Non-trekkies might think of it as sort of a secular heaven.

That's kind of how this resort is. Hidden on the northern shore, one crosses the property border and it's like you've been beamed off dusty St. Croix and onto a tropical paradise planet. The beauty they've added to the site is no small accident. The grounds are lush and manicured, the rooms are thoughtfully laid-out and beautifully appointed, and the main building looks like a magazine advertisement, with billowing white curtains and travertine walkways. And the beach is spectacular - we couldn't believe how few people were there to enjoy it.

We relished the quiet, the ability to commune with nature on the beach and in the woods, the gigantic cocktails (they use PINT glasses in the bar for those 12 dollar drinks, so go ahead and order one!). We adored the abundance of beach chairs, activities, and shade. The pool is fabulous, though not quite shady enough in the afternoon. If you ring for ice or pillows, they are in your room the next time you enter it.

The travertine floors & showers in the rooms are brilliant - I can't think of a better surface to stand up to all the sand that gets dumped out on beachside properties. We meant to get a photo of the beautiful walk-in shower so we could do ours at home just like it. There was a full-sized refrigerator/freezer in our room, and a 2-burner cooktop, plus a dishwasher. Real glasses & wine glasses were much appreciated - those flimsy plastic cups that some hotels provide are not worthy of any beverage worth drinking.

Our daughter did not find a playmate in the whole week we were there, but she is self-contained enough that it wasn't much of a problem. We very much liked that it wasn't a noisy family-centric vacation spot, as we just wanted to read on the beach most of the time. The snorkel/scuba staff were top-notch, very accommodating and reasonably priced.

My only less-than-incandescent comment here is that it took us a while to get used to the demeanor of the restaurant staff, who are markedly more reserved than on the other islands, where people smile a lot and you feel like every waitress is your second mother. As we spent more time on St. Croix, we found this to be common among the locals at other restaurants too. It perplexes me, because one wants the very best for these wonderful people who are sharing their island with us. But like all other granted wishes, after I spoke to a staff member about it, the waitrons seemed to open up and smile much more - it felt a lot friendlier after that.

So go, stay here, and relish every minute. Every bit of this splendor was well-conceived, and we are not unaware that carving this work of vacation art out of a wild rain-forest on a beach took a great deal of doing. We are grateful to the staff here for making our vacation so dreamy. I just hope we don't have to wait 39 years to get back into this Caribbean nexus.

Room Tip: Beachside rooms really are on the beach! Just steps from the water.
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank DharmaBumz
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

Property: Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa
Address: | Estate Davis Bay, 00851-3031, St. Croix
Phone Number:
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 On the Beach Hotel in St. Croix
#3 Top resorts 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
Reservation Options:
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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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