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“Great Family Vacation”

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The Ritz-Carlton Club, St. Thomas
Certificate of Excellence
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Great Family Vacation”
Reviewed March 10, 2013

We stayed in a three bedroom residence for five nights in March. We had a wonderful trip. The residences was very large, clean, comfortable beds and they supplied it with small touches like laundry detergent, patter towels, and dish soap. Our residences was on the first floor - so we gave up the spectacular view but it was nice for my children to walk from pool to our unit unassisted. The residence pool is heated very good for entertaining children. We played pool football and volleyball without worrying that we were disturbing other guests. There are also a few lawn games and ping pong and pool surrounding the pool area. There is self-service water infused with citrus in dispensers by the pool. A nice touch. My children also figured out that the bar would give them a cup of goldfish snacks if they asked nicely! The food is overprice and good - not fantastic. Restaurants all have great locations for outdoor eating. The benefit of the residence is you have a very nice (small) kitchen. We brought a few of the children's favorite/easy foods in a suitcase and served them one or two meals a day in the condo. We preordered perishable grocery items, beer/wine as well. We also found that walking nextdoor to Cowput Bay's Sangria restaurant for breakfast or lunch to be worth it. It was much less expensive and good food right on the beach. The Hotel side infinity pool is spectacular. It looks over ocean to st john. The hotel resort fee is definitely worth paying for if you want to enjoy the beach activities besides just lounging. We used paddle boards, snorkels, fins, paddle boats, kayaks. For all that we used, the price did not seem high. The hotel side also has a sand art craft tent on the beach which we loved. You have to pay extra but it was a great activity and keepsake. We felt service on both sides to be very kind and accommodating. Keep in mind, everyone is on "Island Time."

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank EJBRags
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Morristown, New Jersey
Level Contributor
105 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed February 23, 2013

Contrary to several bad reviews, our experience at this beautiful property was top notch. Le-Reeda Lake helped my husband plan out the details of our brief stay at the Ritz. This visit was planned by my husband as the beginning of a 3 destination surprise "50th" birthday present. Upon arrival, the lobby building is gorgeous with unbelievable views of the bluest waters in Great Bay. We were taken to our huge room on the 5th floor of the club building and it was well appointed and clean with a large ocean view balcony and huge bathroom. We had club access so we had all of our meals in there. Food was good and Cappucino/Espresso machine was delish!!! There were a lot of steps down to the beach and up to the lobby. The island is a giant volcanic rock and so hilly that I don't think this is avoidable. Good to work off the food. The beach was nice with comfy chairs. The pool was freezing which was a bummer as the first day we arrived it was late and breezy, the hot tub was warm. This would be my only complaint. Day 2 was my actual birthday. My hubby had rented a private beach cabanna for the day. Alan was our attendant and he was great. He brought me a plate of gourmet chocolates on a plate with Happy Birthday written in chocolate! A decadent surprise. Late in the day we had 80 minute massages. Jill was excellent and did serious deep tissue work. The spa was very nice. A knock on the door later that night and I was presented with a bottle of champagne(from Honey Bee Limos)and a beautiful cake with "Happy Birthday Cris". We loved our stay at this hotel and can't wait to come back again with our teenaged sons. Lots to do here. The snorkeling was good right off the beach. We saw turtles and many fish. It was choppy so we didn't get to snorkle the entire bay. I would also have liked to sail on the Lindsey over to St. John, we'll do on our next visit. I did a 30 minute sail with Andy around Great Bay on a Hobie and it was fast and fun. Also of note, I received a card in the room from the on-site Jeweler with a gift. I visited the shop and the selection is beautiful and the gentleman very pleasant. I was not buying any jewels that day but did receive a cute star fish pendant as my gift. A nice end to a wonderful visit.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Cris G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winona, Minnesota
Level Contributor
91 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed February 9, 2013

We were in a 3 bedroom condo for a week. The staff and the condo were great. The grounds are well manicured and beautiful. Some of the guests complained of getting bug bites, but in our group of 6 only 1 person did. The towel station is a little far if you are in the end condos. The biggest disadvantage if that nothing is close enough to walk to. Lots of cabs. I noticed that the pool chair pads were very moldy. You have to put a towel on them as they are gross. (Particularly the serenity pool). We got a nice tour of the spa and that facility was beautiful.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank OnTheRoad1947
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Briarcliff Manor, New York, United States
Level Contributor
200 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2013

We just came back from 4 nights at the Ritz Carlton Club, St. Thomas. First, the positive. The staff at the entire hotel was extremely nice and very helpful. Particularly the people at the Club Lounge (and Jake went the extra mile). The room was nice (not spectacular but a beautiful view of the bay). The food presentations at the Club Lounge were great and the staff supurb. Wish it stayed open beyond 10 pm but the club made the stay very special. The hotel is beautiful and the beach quite nice (but not a beach that you can walk very far on so if you want a long beach this is not it. Service at the beach was great, most all the watersports included with the resort fee and everyone very helpful. I just wish the beach was longer so we could actually take a nice run or jog on it, Pool is beautiful but i wish the water were a little warmer. Views to the bay are outstanding.
The negative-the breakfast buffet was very ordinary and never changed during the 4 breakfast we had. Service was slow although after I mentioned that to the front desk the service was much improved. For what they charge for the buffet a little annoying to charge you $8 more for fresh squeezed orange juice. Also, they should take the H&H Bagel breakfast off the menu since H&H has been no more for more than a year. Do not come here if you are a tennis player. Two courts only right next to the hotel generator or electrical system so very hard to hear and very annoying. They charge $58 or so for a resort fee and you cannot enjoy a quiet game of tennis. They don't even have something to reduce the noise. Machines in the health club were a little dated and they did not have anyone to monitor use and keep the place clean.
The staff went out of their way to have you enjoy your stay but I probably would not rush back, Nice for a quick getaway but not as nice as your typical Ritz.

Room Tip: Stay in the club for use of the club lounge and extra service.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank FredSiegel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
26 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed January 24, 2013

Our ten day experience in this tropical wonder was better than average, but not as great as our experience with other Ritz Carlton facilities. The weather in December was better than our weather in Hawaii last year at the same time, so that was a plus. My understanding is the temperature is always a bit warmer than even the Bahamas, so the destination choice for weather was a good one, even though it rained a fair amount every day. We had one storm come through, but even so it lasted only a couple of hours.

Don't plan on any walking around the area off the hotel or club properties. Not only are there some questionable safety concerns in terms of people, but also issues with pedestian zones for walking along the roads. There are hardly any shoulders anywhere on the island and of course, if you're not careful you may get fooled by the right hand right of way traffic pattern.We rented a van for our party, and it was a good choice. The food is fairly expensive on premise and gets a bit boring, so the only alternative is finding a place to eat in nearby Red Hook area, right by the island ferry dock. There are plenty of good spots to choose from as good alternatives to Ritz Carlton monopoly of foods at the resort. But you will need transportation as the Club or hotel provide nothing. Either have your own or get a cab, which will cost a fair amount every day. Might as well rent a vehicle.

That said, we found both the hotel and clubs's eateries decent and generous in portions for the high cost. We prefered the hotel's poolside restaurant and service over the Club's offerings. Plus the swimming pool was heated, a definite plus for our 4 year old who refused to come out of the water the entire trip! Club bookings give you access to the hotel's facilities also, and it's just a very short walk between the complexes.

Service was very good except for one day, when an electronic glitch caused us to be locked out of our rooms and when opened we found the rooms had not been made up. It occured late at night and getting in to our room proved to be a very trying experience. No concierge on duty after early evening, it seems. We had to go over to the hotel for help, and it was not readily forthcoming, causing a tiring end to a long day.

Then there was the incessant noise from the generator rooms right behind the building. they have a de-salinazation plant and generator there running 24/7 and the hum is prevalent even on the side of our rooms away from their location. A definite drawback, at least for those in the building located closest to the West side of the complex. The water tasted salty to me, so we bought plenty of drinking water in Red Hook groceries.

I indulged in a bourbon and seven at several establishments on the island including the bars at the Ritz Carlton. Not one had the proper ingredients and they tasted horrible. Be forwarned!

The staff by the pool at the hotel was uneven in friendliness and cooperation. Some of the staff gave the distinct impression they were put out by accomodating even simple requests - towels, umbrellas. moving lounges, etc. Others were very friendly. So a mixed rating there.

We spent a lot of every relaxing morning listening to leafblowers, lawnmowers and rakers going over the grounds. Maintenance is one thing. Constant noise is another. Worst hotel/Club we've been in for that aspect.

The animal life is something to deal with. We had hordes of iguanas competing for our scraps of lettuce left in dishes. And we had hordes of stray cats competing for the rest of the scraps in our dishes. There was zero effort on the part of management to limit this unwanted intrusion of beasts into our lounging areas anywhere on the complex.

Overall, Hawaii was and will be a better choice for a vacation. The island itself harbors a poverty ridden mentality and appearance. We are not shoppers and the shops of Charlotte Amalie offered nothing of interest. We took in a round of golf at the only facility on the island - Mahogany Run which I will write about soon.

Last we want to point out that the fourth floor view we wanted came at a price. Our room was located in the same place as the breakfast room which is located one floor above our bedroom. Not good. At 6 every morning the staff could be heard moving about, bumping things, dropping things and scrapping tables around. I cannot stand anybody over me when I try to sleep, so that was intolerable. About 7 when the noise overhead quieted down, the leaf blowers and lawn mowers started up outside. Terrible. Hope you like getting up early in the dark with nothing to do.

Room Tip: Hold out for a fourth floor room for view! But beware the West most building as it has the breakfas...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank marvelous333
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
26 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed January 24, 2013

I visited St Thomas and stayed a week at the Ritz in January 2013. I thought the location of the hotel on St. Thomas was great. It was secluded but still convenient to Red Hook.

The grounds of the hotel were beautiful.. great views of St John. I thought the rooms were nice... but I should add, I was attending an event and didn't pay for the room (nice perk, eh?) so I can't really comment on the "value" of the rooms/resort.

I did a few dives with the onsite dive shop (Patagon) .. in general they go to dives sites close to the resort. If I were to return to the Ritz, I think I'd give the dive shop in Red Hook a try instead hoping for better dives sites and more variety.

I played tennis almost each day and the two courts were nice but there is some type of machinery (perhaps the AC units for the entire resort) adjacent to the courts and they were loud! I couldn't even hear my opponent across the court announce the score during the game... kinda odd for a property like the Ritz in a setting like the Caribbean.

I ate several meals on site and enjoyed the global dining place the best... decent food and I didnt think the cost was too bad for the Ritz.

Overall, a nice stay and great service. Everyone I encountered seemed friendly.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank chester
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Connecticut
Level Contributor
78 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed January 24, 2013

We read our fair share of reviews on here before booking the Ritz. Some were a little too harsh, but overall, the reviews came through for us in our planning phase.

We found the staff to be exceptional. They were friendly, engaging, and very helpful. It seemed like they couldn't do enough for us.

Our room with the ocean view was tremendous. The hotel is sprawled out over several buildings. We were in the last building (they are lettered with associated names. A is closest and F is the farthest). People on here complained that the valets with the golf carts were never available. They were great! Every time we called for our car, guest services would ask if we needed a ride (we walked 95% of the time). As we were walking, carts driving by would stop and ask us if we wanted a ride. Again, they were very helpful.

It's a nice gym, tennis courts were good, and the beach was plenty big enough, and the watersports folks were very personable, as well.

Where the trip advisor reviews saved us was with the food. We concur on overpriced and average. Our first day there, we had a sandwich and the tacos with a lemonade and water...$62! We know the island is expensive, but way to stick it to your guests

But we didn't complain because we knew this was coming and we had decided to rent a car for the week. You HAVE to rent one! It's very easy driving around the island. You get used to the left side quickly and the signage on the island helps with that, as well. We hit all the places in Red Hook, we drove the island, went to other beaches, etc. Why spend tons of money on mediocre, overpriced food? The car paid for itself. (We had a BRIGHT green 4-door jeep. Ask the Valets about it. It was the ongoing joke we all laughed about)

Bottom line: Great hotel, great location, east end is the best. Get a car!

Ps We took the ferry to St John one day to walk around. We should have taken the car there.

Room Tip: At first, we were unsure about the first floor. As you can see, our balcony jutted out more than the...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Honest_Direct
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Ritz-Carlton Club, St. Thomas

Property: The Ritz-Carlton Club, St. Thomas
Address: Great Bay, 00802, St. Thomas
Location: Caribbean > U.S. Virgin Islands > St. Thomas > East End
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 Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Specialty Lodging in East End
Number of rooms: 105
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Breathtaking natural beauty right on the beach. A bounty of outdoor adventure with perpetually perfect climate are just a few of the reasons why St. Thomas attracts the savy traveler from around the world. Everything the Ritz Carlton is famous for but raised to a higher level in these stunning private residences. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Ritz-Carlton Club, St. Thomas Hotel u.s. Virgin Islands
The Ritz-Carlton Club, St. Thomas U.S. Virgin Islands

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