I originally booked myself and my husband at Viceroy to celebrate our 22nd wedding anniversary and my 50th birthday But Viceroy made the decision to close for off-season so they moved us to Cap Juluca. At first, we were very upset and disappointed at the decision but there was nothing we could do so we just said to ourselves, "We're not in the room that much anyway . . ." and "It'll be fine . . .", "We'll make the best of it . . ." etc. When we arrived at CJ, we were astonished and in awe at how beautiful the property was and how friendly and helpful the staff was. My husband and I have visited many of the Caribbean islands, i.e Peter Island, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. John and Aruba and we agree that, by far, Maunday's Bay, which is the cove on which CJ is built, is the most stunning beach in the Caribbean. The wide beach has soft white sand and Maunday's Bay water is calm, warm and turquoise clear. The color is so turquoise that it doesn't even look real. It's just amazing!
I read other TripAdvisor reviews that CJ's rooms are "tired" and in need of updating etc. Well, I will agree that some rooms do need updating. And let me tell you, they are in the process of updating those rooms. At the "Maunday Monday" manager's cocktail hour, where guests get free drinks and appetizers, the builder of the property introduced himself to everyone individually and explained they are in the beginning stages of updated the rooms - for real this time. The most visible signs of wear are the tile floors, which are chipped in areas and the grout has become stained, and there's some "impossible to remove" crud in the corners of the bathroom. The crud cannot be removed by the cleaning staff so you can't blame them for a dirty room. But regardless, it needs to be addressed.
More on the rooms. It is unbelievable how private each room is. We never heard or saw another guest in our villa during our stay. We stayed in Villa #4 room #1 which was spacious with a beautiful, large bathroom with an attached atrium. While you shower in one of these bathrooms, the sun shines in and you are privately exposed to the nature outside. It's really a liberating feeling. And it's true, there are no room keys given to the guests but it's my understanding that you can request one. We felt no need for one. There is virtually no crime on Anguilla and there has never been an issue within the property - so we've been told. There is a safe in the room and you can lock the door from the inside once you're in if needed. The bedding is to die for. Although the mini bar could use a better selection of snacks as well as a bigger selection of beer and wine. Daily delivery of continental breakfast is a real treat as is evening turn-down service.
The beach service is friendly and attentive. The beach attendants are always bringing cold water and ice to you and if you need something from them, just put down the red flag and they will come to you promptly. At 3:00 daily, island fruit-flavored sorbet is served to you at your beach chair. Oh and the beach chairs are like lounge chairs - they are the most comfortable beach chairs ever made.
Solar powered golf carts. There are golf carts on the property that are available for guests to use to get around the property - not that the propterty is so big that you can't walk anywhere because it's not. The carts are used via the honor system. You don't get a cart assigned to you for your whole stay. If you need a cart and see one in the Solar Golf Cart parking spot, then just take it. The problem is that some people take the key with them and therefore render the cart useless to anyone else - selfish!. At registration, they tell you upfront, "Don't take the key out of the cart. It's the honor system".
CJ is very different than most resorts. It's very intimate. By that I mean that the resort is not "hotel-like". It's made up of villas with private rooms - not buildings with elevators. We stopped in at Cuisinart one evening where we thought we were going to eat but decided to go elsewhere. The grounds at Cuisinart were beautiful but not the same feeling or setting as CJ. Oh, and we walked over to the Viceroy, which is still closed, but they were reading the property to open again on Nov 1. Let me tell you, there's no reason for us to ever go back there. Don't get me wrong, the lobby is beautiful and the artwork is priceless but there is virtually no beach on either side of the hotel. The surf on that side of the island is viscious and the property itself is sterile. There are many rooms that, from what we could tell, had no view of the water either. It's kind of a typical resort hotel from a "feel" perspective. Cap Juluca blows away Viceroy. I didn't think I would say that but I am comfortable saying that now that I've seen it first hand. Thanks for bumping us Viceroy!
Restaurants we dined at off property in order of preference:
1. La Doce Vita - The BEST gnocci EVER! They are like pillows for angels. Great service. Beachfront dining.
2. Veya - Nice menu, lovely service. For a donation, you can get the recipe fof your favorite item on the menu. I asked for the Coconut Fish soup - DELISH!
3. Jacala - Beachfront dining, nice french menu, and typical nasty french attitude too!
4. Gwen's - Beachfront dining, island BBQ, go on an afternoon when they have a band. You can walk from Gwen's around the point to other beachfront bars i.e. Uncle Ernies.
5. Smokey's - Beachfront dining, walking distance from CJ. Try the Curry Goat-it's fabulous. Go when they a band.
We enjoyed our meals on property as well. The Paperadelle Paste with Lobster Sauce at Pimms is to die for - I had it twice.
Taxi rides are expensive but we didn't feel we needed to rent a car. The fare is based on zones that divide up the island. A one-way fare can be a little as $10 or as much as $36 then times that by 2 for the return trip. In many cases, the drivers will not charge you for the ride to your destination but they give you their business card so you can have the restaurant call them so they can get the return fare. This worked out fine for us and the driver.
If you can swing it, opt for the Anguilla Air Service charter from St. Marten (SXM) to Anguilla. It's $460 for 2 people one way. We booked the charter from SXM to Anguilla and we liked it so much we booked the return flight during our stay. It was well worth the money. When you get off the plane on St. Marten, you are whisked through the immigration process and guided to an 8-seat prop plane and in 8 minutes you are on Anguilla. I don't regret spending the money one bit.
All-in-all, CJ gave us the most glorious 10 days on the beautiful island of Anguilla. You better get there before they upgrade the rooms and raise prices. It may become unaffordable.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Insulated from the outside world, yet only minutes by air or motor launch from St. Maarten, Belmond Cap Juluca resort is a private self-contained enclave along two miles of the best pristine white-sand beaches in the Caribbean. Spacious Moorish villas, five-star restaurants, exotic landscaped tropical gardens, and friendly and abundant service professionals provide an unparalleled level of luxury. Belmond Cap Juluca features a comprehensive array of entertainment amenities, including a fully equipped fitness center, private golf carts and bicycles, aqua golf driving range, bunker and putting green, croquet lawn, Junior Olympic-size swimming pool, a library, tennis courts with a full-time resident pro, and water sports, including snorkeling, wind surfing, water skiing, and sailing. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Orbitz, Travelocity and Hotwire so you can book your Belmond Cap Juluca reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Cap Juluca Hotel West End
- Cap Juluca Hotel Anguilla
- Cap Juluca Anguilla
- Cap Juluca Resort Anguilla
- Belmond Cap Juluca Anguilla/West End Village