If you are reading this , you are probably trying to make a decision about where to stay in St. John. Research no more. You have found the place. Satinwood is just as it is pictured....we wanted a place in Coral Bay, with at least three bedrooms, clean, had a good review on trip adviser and was reasonably priced.We realize that everyone is different with varied expectations , so were were looking for overall trends. Satinwood filled the bill. I was initially scared of the mulching toilets ( remembering back to the outhouses in Girl Scout camp) but it was NOT an issue at all. The views are spectacular. The home is well equipped with everything you would need. We rated it a four because it is a bit tired, but so are we! Many places are more luxurious, but that was not what we were there for. There are two master bedrooms upstairs with 2 lofts ( for kids only). The third master bedroom is a separate apartment in which you have to go out of the house and down some stairs.....great if someone really wants or needs privacy. The downstairs bedroom is its own separate apartment.
Cimmeron was extremely helpful and called us whithin 15 minutes when we ran out of gas for the stove. They offered to come out that evening which was not necessary and had it fixed before 7:00 am the next morning.
Our trip to St. John was glorious. Satinwood's driveway is the least scary one we saw. Many are pretty steep. There are some hairpin curves to get to the house , so a four wheel drive is important. We saw lots of donkeys, pigs, and goats but never saw or heard any neighbors.....so satinwood is quite private. Relaxing by the pool was great. We brought in a lot of food from home and stopped at Cost u less in st. Thomas as groceries on the island
Are very expensive. We had hired Smile taxi in St Thomas to pick the six of us up with luggage and take us to the ferry. Carol was most accommodating and waited while we grocery shopped. It was definitely worth it to bring groceries over .
In St. John We enjoyed a day long sail / snorkel with Cloud 9 in Cruz bay. Captain Dave was quite a sailor and the snorkeling was phenomenal. We had memorable dinners
at Skinny legs and Aqua Bistro. We also had an enjoyable lunch at SOGO in Cruz Bay. Our favorite beaches were water lemon , hawknest, honeymoon and salt beach. We thought trunk was overrated and crowded. Avoid trunk when the cruise people come in.
Snorkeling was magical. We even swam with the turtles. All in all it was a memorable, restful vacation where we enjoyed sitting back and drinking "rum painkillers" in 80 degree weather under a starry sky with the ones you love. Have a wonderful time. You won't regret renting Satinwood. Have a great vacation!
Satinwood sits perched above Coral Bay, and the view is more incredible than the pictures show. There is a huge master bedroom with a loft on opposite ends of a central living area. My mother stayed on one side with the kids in the loft (which they loved) and my husband and I on the other - complete privacy. There are decks outside each bedroom and off of the main living area as well. The pool was good. The location was a bit far from Cruz Bay, but there are places to go out to eat in Coral Bay. Get groceries at Starfish Market before you head out. Also, all the beaches are very close, and from this location, you can explore the more deserted beaches on the island.
The best thing about this place was the service. I've rented houses all over the world and I invariably find they are woefully under stocked. Here, there were plenty of pots and pans, a grill, coolers for the beach, beach chairs, salt and coffee in the cupboards, and a binder with carefully written out with details and recommendations for the whole island. It felt like home the minute we arrived. We also appreciated Cimarron's welcome bag with a bottle of rum in it! Finally, the house is built in a green design and I really appreciated it - I felt good about staying in this wonderfully pristine place.
My wife and I were scheduled to stay at this property in late June, 2013, with our two-year-old daughter. First, the good. The communication we had through booking and prior to arrival was pleasant, and the owner threw in a pack and play so we wouldn't have to rent one or bring one from home, which was nice. The pool can probably be nice given the right conditions, but truthfully, the place is so surrounded by nature that it will usually be found with leaves, bugs, or other foreign objects in it. It has a good view but not overly impressive (you kind of get used to it driving around) and I don't know if the drive all the way up the mountain and down the treacherous driveway is really worth it. I will say the property seems to have been built with eco-friendly aspects - the composting toilets being the key component.
Alternatively, here are some of the issues we ran into. The property was not ready when we arrived, despite the fact that we arrived after our pre-scheduled time. It took two maids and the property assistant over an hour to get it ready. When we first arrived, I was instantly disappointed / concerned. The owner's description paints a much rosier picture of this property than its true condition. As an example, the description speaks of "comfort" and "luxury," neither of which exist in this property. First, while it is understandable that a lack of air conditioning might not always lead to discomfort, when the breeze is not blowing, which was the case during our brief stay, the normal island humidity is oppressive and this house offers zero relief. Additionally, there were several broken screens, which again, tends to become an issue in rat and bug-infested environments. Also, several appliances and normal household items did not work (stove, toaster, light switches, etc.), none of which the property assistant who greeted us could fix for our stay. We were going to "tough it out", until we woke up on our first morning there. After awakening and rummaging about the bedroom, my wife and I noticed relatively large excrement droppings inside our bedroom on a shelf at chest height. Clearly, a decently sized animal (probably a large tree rat??) had been crawling around during the night as the three of us slept. After seeing that, my wife and I decided it wasn't worth risking our health and safety, so we left and stayed at another lodge on the island. We are very reasonable people who have stayed in a variety of rustic, eco-friendly settings on a number of vacations, but this is the first time we both felt uneasy and generally disgusted with our rental. I called the agency / owner several times but no one ever bothered to return.
I cannot recommend this property in its current condition. It is in general disrepair and unpleasant to occupy, to state it mildly. For those looking for something eco-friendly, and who are willing to live in spartan conditions for their vacation, it may be an option to consider, however, I would think at this price point there are likely better options out there.
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|A romantic getaway||Older travelers|