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“This place made our vacation!”

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Garden by the Sea B&B
Ranked #2 of 5 Cruz Bay B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed August 15, 2013

I've stayed in other places in Cruz Bay/St. John, but Garden by the Sea is where I'd definitely want to stay again. The location, amenities, and innkeepers really make this place a gem!

First of all, this place is a very short walk to the center of Cruz Bay, which means you don't have to take taxis to get to the restaurants/bars in town. There is a bit of an uphill walk to get to town, but it's easy to walk up. Since they're not right in town, it's blessedly quiet all day. Also, you get nice views of the nearby salt pond (great bird-watching)!

The inn is located in a beautifully painted gingerbread-style house. The main room and guest rooms have beautiful Caribbean mosaics on the floor, and the balcony (where they serve breakfast) is covered with beautiful flowering plants. The guest rooms are simple, but very elegant - and blessedly air-conditioned. The bathroom where we stayed (Wild Ginger Room) had a semi-open-air (screened) garden shower, which was a really cool feature.

The breakfasts were delicious and prepared exactly to our liking- featuring items like eggs benedict, piña colada French toast, and blueberry pancakes. It was wonderful watching the native bananaquits (birds) and hummingbirds eating from the feeders while enjoying our breakfasts on the beautiful balcony.

What really made the stay amazing was the attention of John and Nancy, the owners. They were welcome and friendly right from the start, and they offered some amazing tips on local attractions, (even for those of us already familiar with St. John!) They have beach chairs, coolers, and snorkel equipment available for use, and they were happy to make car rental arrangements for us as well. John even delivered our luggage to the ferry dock, when we wanted to get some morning beach time before heading back to St. Thomas!

The only negative thing I can think of is that GBTS does not accept credit cards or personal checks. However, Nancy and John do a great job of explaining their payment process before you arrive, so there are no last-minute surprises.

If you're looking for a big resort with lots of swanky amenities, GBTS isn't for you. However, if you want a truly memorable experience with tons of local flavor, you can't get better on St. John than Garden-by-the-Sea!

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank SmooveBB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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134 - 140 of 211 reviews

Reviewed August 2, 2013

We had a great stay at Garden by the Sea! It is the perfect location (not right in Cruz Bay, but easy walking distance if you don't mind 1 hill). John and Nancy were like having your own personal travel agents for the island. They were helpful and generous and gave great tips. Nancy makes some amazing breakfasts....you will not be disappointed! We were in the Wild Ginger room which was just perfect for us since we didn't spend a lot of time in the room. The room was clean and the bed was comfortable. And it is a good value.

Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
3  Thank Julie T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 31, 2013

We had a wonderful vacation at Garden by the Sea. John and Nancy are terrific hosts. They are very knowledgeable about the island, were helpful with with making suggestions about things to see and do, and were very welcoming into their home. The setting is idyllic, the homemade breakfasts on the veranda overlooking the bay were great, and the rooms were clean and comfortable. Nancy took care to find out our breakfast tastes and made things such as vegetable frittata, banana foster pancakes, and homemade breads and fruit. We stayed in the Terrace View room and did have a spectacular view from our room and veranda overlooking Frank Bay. . The location was great- just a short hilly walk to Cruz Bay restaurants and activities, yet far enough from the "congestion" and noise of that area. They had everything covered to make for an easy stay- they had beach towels for us, bug and suntan lotions, and even an "honor" bar with minimal cost to make a drink to have on the deck during sunset! St. John has fabulous beaches and the snorkeling was amazing. We loved everything about our stay!

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Laurie Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2013

First, John and Nancy were terrific. Very knowledgeable, friendly, and helpful! They have thought of everything to make their guests' time on St John wonderful, and have great tips about all the area's attractions. Great location if you want a short (hilly!) walk into Cruz Bay. Delicious home-made breakfasts, great outdoor showers, we definitely recommend staying here!

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank KCAMPANE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2013

This was a great place to stay. The location was suburb . Just far enough away from Cruz bay to make it quiet and peaceful but still an easy walk to the centre. The location also meant spectacular views from our room . The really special part about staying here was the hospitality of John and Nancy. They made breakfast the best meal of the day; they gave great advice and tips on where to go and what to do and provided so many things, from sun screen and bug spray to maps and flashlights. I was traveling with a friend who had to spend time working on the island and John and Nancy made an extra effort to make sure I had a good time while I was by myself; even sharing their evening meal with me one night. I highly recommend staying here

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Claire B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2013

Hard to do anything but say that all of the compliments that others have offered are true.

John & Nancy are wonderful hosts (They are the owners and are there about 5 months of the year and have other caretakers for the rest of the year.) Breakfasts are tasty and imaginative. Location is very convenient. (FYI - The location shown on Google Maps is not accurate.)

We stayed in the Terrace Room. It was terrific.

Room Tip: Terrace room is worth the extra.
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank CarolnRobb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 21, 2013

Our stay at the Garden By The Sea was the perfect oasis for us in a long overdue vacation. On the short list of what stood out to us and made our stay a lasting memory are: the genuineness of Mickey and Frank and the quiet and comfortable rhythms of the day set at Garden By The Sea- starting with a delicious breakfast on the veranda, daily smoothies made for us, helpful guidance about what we might like to do each day, and a lovely friendly small place where we could meet and connect with other travelers.

Garden By The Sea is pretty much a perfect place from which to venture out and get to know the beauty of St. John.

St. John is hilly, so be prepared for that if you are walking into town to get a taxi for your excursions. We actually loved that daily walk since it more than helped balance the eating that we did!

Room Tip: We loved the Terrace Room for its comfortable size and privacy as the only room on the second floor.
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Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
2  Thank rcbwest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Garden by the Sea B&B

Address: PO Box 37 | Enighed, Cruz Bay 00831-0037, St. John
Location: Caribbean > U.S. Virgin Islands > St. John > Cruz Bay
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 B&Bs / Inns in Cruz Bay
Price Range: $160 - $275 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Garden by the Sea B&B is the quintessential Caribbean home: bright, colorful walls; local art and paintings; gingerbread trim; lush gardens with coconut and banana trees; & nesting birds, iguanas, and peacocks. We are located in the heart of Estate Contant and Enighed – a funky little neighborhood within walking distance of Cruz Bay and 1 ½ blocks from Frank Bay Beach. Your hosts have lived on St. John for over 12 years and are very familiar with the island and the national park and are very willing to help plan your daily activities. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Garden By The Sea Hotel Cruz Bay
Garden By The Sea Bed And Breakfast
Garden By The Sea B&B St. John/Cruz Bay

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