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Windward Passage Hotel
Reviewed March 4, 2013

This was my son and I's second stay at the Windham. We come to St Thomas to dive, drink beer, eat and repeat. Windham is old but a major point is its location. In fact on our last trip we never made it out of Frenchtown. This trip we made it into town, a 5 minute walk in the other direction. Sophie checked us in and out and was very cordial. The Harbor view rooms are noisy...but the view is worth it. Remember folks this is an ISLAND...rather then complaining about the intermittent wi-fi..be amazed that there is consistent hot water. Try tipping your maids...it helps considerably. Also respect the local custom of beginning your converstions, requests, etc...with "Good Morning"..."Good Afternoon"..."Good Night...it shows respect and will make your interactions more positive. Would I stay at the Windham again? You bet!!!

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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4  Thank SeaDwellerF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 27, 2013

Our worst nightmare.

With great excitement we arrived at the Windward passage hotel where we looked forward to 5 days with good experiences.

we started meeting a sour, un interested receptionist who started to check us in. After 5 minutes, she asked us to wait until she had checked the room .. it took so just 55 minutes.

When we finally got to our room, the cleaning lady started to change towels, bedding and vacuuming, (so we do not know what the receptionist had to spend an hour before we were checked in)

We complained about this and after some diskution we got a new room.
This room was identical to the first, although cleaned.

After the first night my girlfriend discovered a mouse in her suitcase, which had chewed at her stuff, we went to the reception and explained this and after another diskution and a repceptionist that turned the eyes of us, we got a new room again. we got an apology and a voucher for $ 5 we could use the hotel's own casino .... whauw ..

I consider us to be regular people who do not have special demands for hotels to have a good experience, but here we feel really cheated ..
The price and quality are far apart.Their website and pichures are NOT the way we saw this hotel..
At the same time, the hotel is in a very noisy main road, where the side streets are not save to stay in the evening, the risk of assault is great in this area.

Our overall rewiew of this hotel are the following:
Dull, dark and very worn hotel. The staff is rude and very little service-minded.
The rooms are dirty, worn and smells like wet carpet.
The balcony is so little, and it is not possible to use.
Their gym is a joke, and there is a generally bad mood/energy at this hotel.

Hotel price is way too high for what they offer their customers.

THE ONLY GUARANTEE YOU GET AT THIS HOTEL IS THAT YOU WILL BE REALLY DISAPPOINTED.

Room Tip: select a different hotel
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Snuskegris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philip R, Director of Sales at Windward Passage Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded March 4, 2013

Thank you for posting your review. It's obvious here that you didn't experience the best from our hotel, and for that I'm terribly sorry. We have not had any rodent problems in the past but I'm assuming that the renovation of the main street area for Carnival has brought them out of hiding. We have doubled our efforts with our exterminator to see to it that we eliminate this problem in the future and our maintenance staff is working on sealing up the building better to keep this from becoming an issue going forward.

Windward Passage is located in the heart of downtown and,as any hotel located in this type of location, it will not be as quiet as a remote hotel located away from the shopping and attractions. Additionally, while we don't suggest walking along Main street in the evenings when everything is closed, guests should be comfortable walking there during the day when all the shops are open, and should feel comfortable walking to Frenchtown for their dinners if they choose.

Finally, I must also apologize for the time it took to get you into a clean and ready room. The winter has proven to be busier than in past years and the team has been hard at work on a better method of verifying rooms before we hand a guest keys.

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Reviewed February 27, 2013

I returned to give the Windward another try this February after some access issues last year. Very friendly when I checked in and most staff here are helpful. But service is inconsistent and it is frustrating when you ask about a local attraction, like the 99 steps and get a clipped answer to your inquiry. Food is ok, but after ordering the same breakfast 4 days in a row, and getting different prices, you wonder what happened? I do like the location here, as walking is easy to downtown and Frenchtown. They have a van to take you to the beach at Magen's bay. Disappointed to find the gift shop is closing February 28th. Noise is high on the ocean side if the party oat is out front. Cleaning is also inconsistent.

Room Tip: Try a room on the side, not front as that is very noisy.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled on business
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Thank elainewny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philip R, Director of Sales at Windward Passage Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded March 4, 2013

Thank you for your review of Windward Passage. We are and will continue to improve on the points you mentioned and I was glad to hear you are seeing the changes we are making. The gift shop being one of them. Yes the current gift shop is closing but we have a great plan for that space that will still provide the amenities you might have purchased there in the past but much, much more!

I was surprised to hear about the pricing issues you had at breakfast and will pass your comments onto our restaurant management to look into it.

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Reviewed February 24, 2013

I have stayed at the Windward Passage Hotel several times, primarily for business. While the hotel is situated in a prime location near the bay, you may not always get the waterfront view. In addition, the hotel is in need of an overall renovation. Some rooms may have gone through a renovation, but most have not. The rooms just don't have that clean feel one would expect. Service, especially check-n and check-out is slow and inefficient. And there is little attempt to make guests feel welcome.

Windward Passage is an adequate hotel, if no other options are available. The location is great, walking distance to the Sea Plane Base and fast cruise ship to Tortola, BVI. You can also walk to French town, where there are several very good restaurants. You will need to take a taxi, if you have not rented a car, to get to other areas on the island. If you rent a car, remember to keep LEFT.

Room Tip: For dinner, if eating at the hotel, skew earlier to take advantage of eating in the courtyard while...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank ramius44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philip R, Director of Sales at Windward Passage Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 27, 2013

Thank you for posting your review, and thank you for pointing out how great our location is. I'm very glad to hear you are a frequent guest of Windward Passage and hope you will enjoy the new changes coming this spring to the property.

I know I've commented before on our renovated vs. unrenovated rooms in my other responses, but want to make sure you are aware that we have every intention of getting ALL of our rooms up to the standard we have for our "new" rooms. I know sometimes people equate old with not clean, but I hope that you didn't find the room to be anything less than immaculate.

Please accept my apologies for the issues you had with our front desk. We are in the process of doing some training and I believe this will remedy the problem in the very near future. I invite you to comment again on your next trip and let us know how we are improving.

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Reviewed February 24, 2013

I stayed here earlier this month while on business in St Thomas. I had picked the Windward Passage hotel as it had a lot of good reviews on trip advisor and was reasonably priced. I got rooms for $179 a night which was significantly cheaper than my alternate location, the Marriott Frenchman's Cove.

The hotel is located on Veteran's Drive in Charlotte Amalie. Veteran's Drive is a four lane road that traverses the South side of the island and is the main road used to get from Cyril E King airport to Charlotte Amalie and points further East. The road is very busy during the day but traffic noise did significantly lessen after 7pm.

The hotel is a four floor hotel that is surrounded by an eight foot high fence. You gain access to the hotel through a metal gate operated by staff in the security booth. This leads you in to a parking lot that runs along the front of the building. The hotel was clean and well lit.

The lady checking me in didn't have much personality and wasn't the fastest. After what seemed like a very lengthy check-in process (which included payment being taken by credit card imprint machine!) I went to my room on the 3rd floor. The open walkway gave me a good view of the swimming pool and the putting greens on the interior of the hotel.

My room didn't look like the ones shown in the hotel photo gallery. Instead of tile, the carpet floor wasn't the cleanest looking. The furniture was straight out of the 1970's (all dark brown wood that had seen better days). The sliding glass door to my room didn't lock and was held shut by a metal pipe in the track. I did have a great view of the mountains behind Charlotte Amalie (after adjusting my view over the trash pile next to the interestingly named "Big Cock Bar" that is next to the hotel).

I also noted that my wi-fi signal on my laptop kept dropping. The bed and bathroom were clean. The room badly needed updating and the level of fit and finish was, in my opinion, poor.

I woke up early and went for breakfast. The staff weren't the most cordial - I was greeted with "what do you want". Service was a bit slow, perhaps because there was a tour group who were having their own private breakfast in one of the conference rooms. The food, when it arrived, was reasonable.

I noted that running along the interior of the building were a number of conference rooms and also some stores. There was also a small gambling room.

One evening I asked the barman for a place to eat (the hotel restaurant closed at 10pm). He suggested a local restaurant which had 'cold beer and loose women'. I decided to pass.

At check-out I noted that my bill was incorrect. One of the people in my group had requested to be relocated because they couldn't get wi-fi in their room (again, on the 3rd floor on the right hand side of the building). They were moved to a room with an ocean view which DID look like one of the rooms shown in the photo gallery. The staff helping them move told them there are lots of wi-fi issues on that side of the building - perhaps the hotel should take that as a sign to get it fixed? Because of the room move, I was charged an additional $50 per night. I contested this and while the cost was credited back to me it took over 30 minutes for me to check out as the bill was wrong three times and I insisted on having a correctly printed hard copy.

Would I stay at the Windward Passage hotel again? No, I wouldn't. I would rather spend the additional money and try the Marriott. Sometimes, you do get what you pay for.

Room Tip: Demand a room that has working wi-fi. Consider paying extra to get one of the refurbished rooms.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Circusdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philip R, Director of Sales at Windward Passage Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 27, 2013

Thank you for posting your review. I appreciate your candid comments and description of the hotel. Please note that Windward Passage is an older property and things like credit card imprinters are still part of our everyday operation.

While we do have an inventory of renovated rooms, we are still not finished with our improvements. The accommodations you had were in one of our rooms scheduled to be updated this spring with new furniture, fixtures and flooring. Our hope is to have all of our rooms updated by the end of the year.

We are one of very few hotels on St. Thomas to offer free wireless internet through two independent networks. During your visit one of the two was not functioning properly and this is why you had the drop offs. This is being looked at currently and will be fixed as soon as possible.

I was very dissapointed to hear about your experiences with our staff!! I apologize for the lack of hospitality you experienced and will be sure to pass your comments onto the managers to review with their teams.

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Reviewed February 20, 2013

We picked this hotel as for once in the Caribbean we wanted to be in centre of the main town, as Charlotte Amolie has a lot to offer in terms of restaurants, views, historic buildings, etc. We wanted to stay in the centre, as we were having beach locations during the other two hotels used on this trip on other islands.

The location did not disappoint. It was excellent, with the lovely harbour opposite, ferry terminal to other islands, and the nearby Frenchtown with its restaurants and interesting old buildings and the historic district of the town 5 minutes walk away.

We arrived at this hotel having read the reports on Trip Advisor, and so we were expecting a few problems, and we found that the reports were right. Forewarned is Forearmed and we did not find ourselves suddenly very disappointed. It was much as we expected. From the outside the hotel looks reasonably impressive, but once inside it looks in need of a major make-over. The lobby was very small and tired, and while the room was a little tired it was clean and was well-serviced throughout our stay. Don’t expect a lot of resort services here.

The staff were either good or very poor. We encountered rude reception staff and good ones, the same was true at breakfast (the only meal we tried), whereas the maid staff we met were excellent and friendly and the bar was good.

The only meal we tried was breakfast. There was no buffet unless you were on a Danish package tour and the service was slow and the food not brilliant. With so many restaurants outside to choose from, we never tested any other meal here.

Our room in the hotel was a waterfront room, an upgrade that we were given for free, even though we had been prepared to pay a reasonable amount for it. But before you decide on an upgrade, there is an issue. We loved the view over the waterfront. There is a patio door, that enables you to look out over the lovely view, although you cannot go outside, but be warned, it is very noisy, and even with the door firmly closed, you can still hear the traffic noise, which runs for much of the night. Light sleepers should opt for no view at the back of the hotel.

The hotel provides a free shuttle service to Magens Bay, a lovely beach with lots of facilities, which works well, so if you want a day on the beach, you can take the shuttle here, or take a taxi to one of the other lovely bays on the island. Charlotte Amolie has some fine old buildings and a lot of history, and there is an interesting self-guided historic walk. The marina is attractive, and we found enough good places to eat. Some days of the week, particularly Tuesdays, there can be a lot of cruise ships docked (up to 8). On those days, the town is packed with people and there are lots of touts trying to get you on to tours. Best go somewhere else on the island on those days.

In the Caribbean we have always found it easy to rent a car when we decide we need one. We tried every rental agency on the island on two occasions and found no cars available. If renting a car, it is worth remembering that all the cars are US vehicles with left hand drive, but on the island you drive on the left and you need to book well in advance. Taxis are expensive and are charged per person. There are tourist mini-buses which you can use if you find out about the system.

Overall, if we came here again, would we use this hotel again – yes. It was in the location we wanted to be, and having looked at some of the resort hotels, such as the Marriott, which was a lovely hotel, with excellent beach and plenty of facilities, but there was nowhere to walk, while at the Windward Passage, there was plenty of places to explore.

Room Tip: If you sleep well, take a waterfront room for the view, if you don't take a standard room at the...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank IanPeterborough
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 12, 2013

We stayed 1 night prior to taking the fast ferry to Tortola. Upon arrival we had a pretty quick check in. The room was okay. The bedding and sheets looked clean but the bathrooms really need updating. It was old and dated and not very clean. They need to be gutted and redone. Went to the bar for a drink...bartender was just coming on so it took a while to get a drink even tho only 4 of us were there. Have to remember island time Went to salon to get my nails "fixed" no one was there. Our room faced the front of the hotel and the entrance was right below. Heard traffic, and people yelling, and laughing and making all kinds of noise till very late so didn't sleep well. Would pick another hotel next time

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank lizinma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philip R, Director of Sales at Windward Passage Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 17, 2013

Thank you for posting a review and letting us know your experience with Windward Passage. We have a room renovation scheduled for the spring and summer when things are not quite as busy in St, Thomas. In fact, we have the new furnishings already on the island but as the hotel is full almost every night in the winter we elected to wait to start the work to avoid disturbing our guests.

As a downtown hotel, our rooms facing the waterfront can sometimes not offer the quite of our friends at other more remote hotels on the island. If you elect to try our services again in the future, please request a room facing away from the harbor. They are usually a bit quieter.

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Additional Information about Windward Passage Hotel

Address: Veterans Drive | Waterfront, Charlotte Amalie 00804, St. Thomas (Formerly Holiday Inn)
Location: Caribbean > U.S. Virgin Islands > St. Thomas > Charlotte Amalie
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Price Range: $202 - $333 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Windward Passage Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 151
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Windward Passage Hotel is truly your bargain in paradise. Currently the hotel is open only for first responders, business owners, and relief efforts only. We are perfect for business travelers and the ideal choice for short stays and shopping trips. Centrally located, overlooking the picturesque Charlotte Amalie harbor, we are within walking distance of the major downtown shopping district and an even shorter walk away from the ferry and seaplane docks for transit to nearby islands. Transfer to the beaches is convenient for all our guests, so they miss out on nothing on our tropical island. Our Ocean View Rooms boast a breath-taking view of the harbor and our staff is courteous and friendly. We are constantly updating and improving our facilities to serve you better. You are welcome to stop by and pay us a visit. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Charlotte Amalie Holiday Inn
Holiday Inn Charlotte Amalie
Windward Passage Hotel St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands

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