Just returned from a week's stay. This was our second visit to St. Thomas. Last time we stayed at the Ritz. I will say that the public areas of the resort - pool, lobby,etc. are on par with the Ritz; the rooms & service clearly are not. Our room - located in the Ocean Tower, was in dire need of TLC - worn carpet, ants, mildew & cobwebs on the exterior door of the balcony, and mold in the bathroom. And speaking of the bathroom - I think it may have been slightly bigger than the one on our cruise a few years back. There was no way to fit 2 people in it at one time. My husband & I needed to schedule our bathroom time accordingly. The heating/cooling system in our room ran constantly. This might be a negative for some but since it was pretty loud, I enjoyed the fact that it drowned out the voices and noises from the hall and nearby rooms. That said, I could clearly hear the voices & conversation from the guests located in the room above us whenever I was in the bathroom.
The property definitely has a great location & a beautiful stretch of beach. I had read that back in July the elevator to the beach was out of service - well it's March & it still is. Plan on a good hike to the beach including about 110 stairs.
I used the gym - when it was available. Based on how packed it was, I don't think it's adequately sized for the number of guest rooms. I think there were 6 treadmills, a few ellipticals and a few bikes. The first day I arrived around 8:00 AM. Every piece of equipment was being used & there were a few people waiting. On day 2, I arrived at 6:15 (they are open 24 hours) and there were only 3 of us there but by 7:00, every piece of equipment was taken & 3 people were waiting in a line. Other than being overly crowded, the gym was fine. It's located in a "basement" feeling room with no views to the outside but each cardio piece has a TV & headsets are offered. On 2 of my days at the gym, they were out of hand/sweat towels - the opposite of the Ritz where an attendant walks through offering you a cold towel during the workout but again, this was not the Ritz. But honestly, how hard can it be to keep an eye on the Fitness Center?
I did use the spa 3 times while there. Service was fine with prices only slightly higher to what I normally pay. I did enjoy the fact that if you had a spa service, you had access to the private spa pool for the entire day. You could also purchase a pass for $25. I found that pool to be very relaxing and with only a few people using it. I did meet a couple of other people at that pool who were locals. They said that the Marriott lets them purchase a spa/fitness membership so they can use the spa & workout facilities. This might explain why the gym was overcrowded.
We ate at Coconut Joes a couple of times. Like others have said, service is beyond slow or island time and honestly, didn't seem very friendly.
Offsite, we had dinner at the Mafolie Hotel. I would highly recommend it. It sits perched up high overlooking the town & the water and offers a great view. It's located in a small hotel (about 20 rooms) and the prices are reasonable and the service was excellent. Delicious tuna and lobster. We also ate at Oceana. Wonderful experience! Definitely more pricey and fancy than Mafolie but a great romantic spot on the water's edge in it's own cove. We also tried to dine at Room With a View for happy hour - ate there last time. They were closed for a private function when we arrived, so I recommend calling them first before spending $$ on the cab fare there.
All in all, we had a wonderful vacation in St Thomas. If I were to return, I'm not sure I would choose the Marriott again. Great beach and public areas but the Ritz has better rooms and much better service. I guess choose accordingly.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Surrounded on three sides by stunning Caribbean ocean views, the Frenchman's Reef Resort combines modern luxury and the unique Virgin Island style of St. Thomas. The hotel features clean, crisp large guest rooms with flat screen 50" TVs. Experience new resort features including an infinity pool, children's splash zone, adult infinity pool with bar; and private spa pool. Our Lazule Sea Spa is now open featuring extensive treatment rooms, salon, state of the art fitness center, and private spa pool with cabanas. Aqua Terra is one of three restaurants at Frenchman's Reef which features spectacular views of the Charlotte Amalie harbor. Our mission is to host you brilliantly... To make your every event and stay with us unforgettable and effortless. Come visit us at Marriott Frenchman's Reef and Morning Star Beach Resort and discover the most luxurious vacation destination in the US Virgin Islands. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Marriott Frenchman`s Reef & Morning Star Beach Hotel Charlotte Amalie
- Marriott Frenchman`s Reef And Morning Star Beach Resort
- Marriott Charlotte Amalie
- Charlotte Amalie Marriott
- Marriott Frenchmans Reef
- Frenchmans Reef St Thomas
- Frenchman's Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands