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Sandcastle Hotel
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Reviews (110)
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All reviewsthe soggy dollar bargarden cottageac roomoutdoor showerbeautiful beachpain killerssand castlesame weekbeach frontbeaches in the worldgreat place to get awaywhat makes this place so specialfellow guestsgreat drinkswater pressurethe entire staffclaire
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83 - 88 of 110 reviews
Reviewed March 15, 2009

I am leary to write too much, as I am afraid too many people will swamp this place. There are only 5 rooms, and they are booked up in advance. I loved it here. The rooms are off the beach along a sandy path. A little tray of water sits outside your room to wash your feet in before you enter your room. An outside shower is attached to your bathroom and bedroom. It was invigorating to take a shower outdoors, however, I am modest, and the shower was very private. There are no room keys. Sandcastle is amazing, and you will never find another place like it. As long as you enjoy beautiful beaches, nature and boaters, you will be fine. The boaters (upscale, mind you) do come in around 11:00 am and leave by 4:30 ish. It is fun to lay in a lounge chair on the beach and watch them come in. If you don't want to be there all day, there is also "One Love Beach Bar", "Gertrudes" and , Ivan's Stress Free Bar" on White Bay also. We loved to walk the beach and make our rounds. My pictures will tell it all... This is the hardest in all my trips to explain because it is a simple place with luxury that you will not get staying at any other beachfront location. Unless you experience this, you will never understand.

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank CindyMartin2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 24, 2009

This was our 4th year staying at Sandcastle. We feel like we are coming home when we plan our trip each year. Sandy and Roger make sure that you are welcomed at the dock, then you are taken to a little piece of paradise. Each cottage is so close to the water that the open air cottage lets you hear the sounds of the ocean all night. They are clean and nicely decorated small units, but who needs anything else...you are at the beach! All the staff at Sandcastle treat you like royalty. If you have any needs or problems they are quick to resolve whatever situation that may arise. Each member of the staff makes a personal effort to treat you as if you are the only guest and it shows daily with each person calling you by name or taking the time to make sure you have everything you need.

Customer service is what makes a person want to spend time at a place. If you are looking for the Ritz Carlton, then it is not for you, if you are looking for a place that you can relax, not be bothered by the real world and just watch the day go by then this is the place for you. We have been fortunate to have found several other folks like Big John, Art, Jean, Melissa and Carl that enjoy the same thing we do so they come home with us the same week each year.... and we have the best family (Sandcastle staff) in the world take care of them!!!!

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank mam66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 8, 2008

We first visited the Sandcastle in 2003, it was awesome. The owners at the time were amazing, friendly, accomodating. The food was great and the staff pretty good. This most recent trip was quite different. I got the distinct feeling we were not wanted, a bother. The new managers don't seem to care about their guests at all, they are only interested in money. It is very expensive to stay here and not worth it. The rooms were pretty clean and food still pretty good but if you're going to travel all the way down to Jost Van Dyke don't stay here it's not worth it.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Murphy5641
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2008

Let me first start by saying that I will continue to travel to Jost Van Dyke but I will NEVER stay at Sandcastle again. This was the 6th time my husband and I have been to Jost Van Dyke. We have stayed at the Sandcastle before with the old owners and have enjoyed ourselves tremendously. But the new managers are terrible.
My mom and dad were the first to go to Jost Van Dyke and stayed at Sandcastle. They loved it so much they made their twosome into a foursome when my husband and I joined them. We loved it so much we we took our foursome and made it 8 when my in-laws and brother and sister-n-law accompanied us the next ... and so it went. My cousin was inspired by all of our pictures and stories of the island and she had her wedding on Jost at The One Love Bar and Grill. It was fantastic! So the 8 soon became 30!
My parents have continued to stay at sandcastle each time they go to Jost. My husband and I have stayed elsewhere since we had our daughter 2 1/2 years ago as they do not allow children at Sandcastle.
Two years ago my husband and I decided that we wanted to get our family and friends together to and have a big party for my parents 43rd anniversary. I contacted Sandcastle to see if we rented the 6 cottages out could we bring my daughter and nephew. It wasn't the first time Sandcastle had allowed children when renting out the hotel, so we were all set.

This location seemed like our best bet as it isn't easy for some of our family members to get around. The idea was to keep things simple and centrally located for dinner and breakfast at least while making it easier for them to get around.

Twenty people decided to join us for my parents week! And at the end we were to have a big party at the One Love Bar and Grill (ymmm) We had people several locations on the island and most nights we had planned for them to join us at the Sandcastle for dinner. ( at $70pp)

Two years of planning, $15,000 (to rent out sandcastle), and lots of excitement and anticipation all were lost. We arrived on a Saturday and everyone met at Sandcastle for dinner. Here is where the problem became clear. The managers were not nice or accomidating at all for anything. Each time we put our dinner order in we got the speech about how the kids needed to behave. Now it's important to note that our children are very comfortable going out for dinner. They do it several times a week, That being said, we were never going to give them the opportunity to act up. We had monitors in the rooms so we could put them to bed if need be, we would removed them from the restaurant if had to... however it never came to that.
We soon realize that they had it out for us when a large party ate at the restaurant one night and proceeded to be vulgar, loud and down right obnoxious talking about inappropriate things for dinner ( I will spare you). And they were worried about our kids table manners?
They made us feel so uncomfortable about our children that we spent most of our time during the day away from the hotel area. Looking back, that is insane $15000 to rent the place out not including any drinks. lunches, or any other extras and we were worried that our kids could be too loud?? What was I thinking?
Anyway I digress... by Monday the managers start warning us of a tropical storm coming our way. By Tuesday night they were telling us it was a potential catagory 2 hurricane and we needed to evacuate to Tortolla ( a nearby island ). We listened to them because they are only concerned about our saftey right?? No.
Wednesday morning we were sent away to Tortolla to a hotel that was over an hour into the island that had no airconding but had healthy supply of black mold. Oh did I mention that it was an expensive dive?
We made the best of it. Because we were on vacation right.? Thursday morning we wake up after the "hurricane"( which turned out to be a tropical storm) to blue skys and sunshine. We were ready to go back to Jost and finish our vacation. Starting from 7am that morning I kept calling the manager to tell him we were on our way back. After 5 messages left we realized that they were not ever going to call us back and had no intention of us returning to the island or more importantly, Sandcaslte.
Our friends from the One Love Bar on whitebay arranged transportation for 20 of us back to Jost from Tortolla. They were our little gaurdian angels for the rest of the trip.
When I finally got in touch with someone from Sandcastle who told us that the rooms had be dismantled and we were unable to stay there, they had no staff, and the restaurant and bar were closed. So once again our friends at One Love arranged for us to stay at the Perfect Pineapple ( love it).
We were back on the beach at White Bay just a few steps away from Sandcastle before noon on Thursday. I walked down to Sandcastle to find out that the rooms were ready to go except for linens on the beds, and the bar, restaurant, and giftshop were open. Can you imagine my surprise and frustration to find out not only this, but protocol for a tropical storm is to move to a higher elevation hotel not evacuate. All the hotels were available. No one else on the entire island evacuated. Just us.
I couldn't not get an answer to why the Sandcastle did this to us and I am sure I will never get an answer.

The very worst part of all of this story is that my mom wound up getting ill on this trip. The Sandcastle uprooted her and sent her all over the BVI know just how sick she was. My mother went to the hospital while on vacation to get IV fluids and antibiotic. She made it to her party on Friday night at The One Love Bar and Grill which was truely perfect.
When we returned to the states my mom went into the hospital and went into kidney failure. She has since undergone extensive surgery and we pray she will survive.
This was my opportunity to do something for my mom and dad. Our opportunity as a family to celebrate them. My moms condition could not have been helped, however the horrific treatment we received at the Sandcastle could have been.

Please visit Jost. See it for its amazing landscape, it's culture, it's wonderful people. It is still my favorite place on earth. Stay at the perfect pineapple... Eat, drink and be a part of the love that is the One Love Bar and Grill... snorkle in their beautiful waters, but stay far away from the Sandcastle and the Soggy Dollar Bar.
Their good nature and hospitality went with the past owners and managers.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled with family
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30  Thank tiffnmatt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 7, 2008

Perhaps I anticipated a little too much after reading the other reviews on this site, but I expected really good things from the Sandcastle Hotel. Unfortunately, great things were not delivered. Yes, the beach is really great. The water is clear and warm and great for swimming and relaxing--just not from about 11 or twelve in the afternoon until the sun sets. Honestly, I don't mind people on the beach having a good time. What bothered me was the boats that pulled up almost to the shore and blocked all possiblity of swimming near the hotel. And it really is like spring break at times--a lot of drunk and disorderly teenagers. There really isn't any place to go down the beach unless you want to pay for beach chairs.

However, this would have been nothing if the hotel had been as wonderful as claimed. It just wasn't. The room was old and dirty (the maids did try) and the sheets and quilt looked and felt unclean. For $2000/wk (included MAP--five dinners, breakfast daily), it just wasn't okay. In addition, the food was okay but not great and sometimes actually not edible (beware the desserts!).

This brings me to the staff--the locals that work there are GREAT. The maids, cooks, Mic the bartender are all really wonderful. To be really honest, the managers and owners are not. We were made to feel as if we were an imposition, especially the day we left when they were having some annual beach bash and we were told we would have to work around their schedule to check out. On their website it says that they wish the day boaters who come to the beach would go elsewhere. This coudn't be farther from the truth based on their behavior. When we finally saw the owners, the only thing they focused on was the beach party--they never attempted to introduce themselves or ask how our stay was.

It really is a shame as the place could be really wonderful. Some updates to the rooms and some effort at customer service would really help out. I suspect that a lot of the positive reviews are from people who have stayed here many times in the past and so have a lot easier time overlooking an old friend's failings. Would we come back to Sandcastle? Absolutely not. Maybe to Jost Van Dyke--the island is very pretty and has some great beaches. I think the island is best for a day trip or a stay of a night or two--especially if you have your own boat. Keep in mind there's not much to do and things generally close by nine or ten. Some great places were One Love (get a Bushwacker!) and Corsairs and Foxy's by the Bubbly Pool. Definitely rent a car for a day or two if you stay at Sandcastle so you can tour the island.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank CashHokie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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