St. Kitts is so beautiful- we chose it for our 10th anniversary bc we wanted an island we could afford, access easily, and that offered adventure. We didn't care much about where we stayed, and really there aren't many options. The Marriott is fine. We stayed in the hotel itself, not the villas or the timeshares. I did hear those were nice. The hotel is clean with nice pools, a spa, a gym, a beach. I was not a huge fan of the main pool- a DJ, a bar, people acting stupid...reminded me of MTV's Spring Break. I prefer private and peaceful, which was more possible at the north or south pool. We enjoyed the beach- very windy toward the late afternoon- but could have done without the people coming by and asking if we wanted a massage or a cd of caribbean music. The best thing about the beach for us was the turtles. We rented snorkeling equipment from the hotel for $16 USD and swam out maybe 50 feet and there were huge sea turtles munching on sea grass. It was awesome.
We ate away from the hotel so I can't speak to the restaurants, but I will say i liked the breakfast and coffee at Rituals (just down the street) better than the cafe calypso. We also ate at Serendipity (overrated), walked out of Spice Mill after they told us they were out of both lobster and rib eye, eliminating 4 things on an already small menu, loved local's night (Friday) at Reggae Beach Bar, Rituals Sushi was delicious and so close, and the Pavillion is a MUST- it's such a beautiful setting and the food is incredible.
We rented a car after 2 days of dealing with the taxis. Supposedly the rates are fixed, but sometimes they overcharge you and you CAN haggle with them no matter what the hotel tells you. My husband and I were so fed up after 2 days, we walked form the hotel to Basseterre and several cabs tried to give us a ride and offered us lower rates than the ones we had previously paid. It's a 2 mile walk- not bad really, totally doable- but everyone, the cabbies and the hotel staff were shocked by the fact that we wanted to walk. Renting the car was worth it in spite of the huge sales tax and the $25 to buy a license to drive on St. Kitts. It wasn't easy to get used to the driving (stay left and watch out for potholes), some of the streets through the villages are really narrow and there are lots of hairpin turns, but we liked having the freedom, saving the money and not having to talk to some of the crazy drivers (Gyron, driver of the Fighting Cock).
One of the reasons we rented the car was so that we could drive to the volcano trail and hike to the crater. EVERYONE we talked to- hotel staff, cab drivers, etc. emphatically told us we could not do the volcano ourselves, we needed a guide. A guide was at least $90 per person and we did not want to do that. We felt confident that we could handle the trail- finding it was our biggest worry. We finally convinced a driver to tell us where it was- gave him a couple of bucks and he drew on our map, of which there seems to be only one and it is terrible. If you can find maps before you go to the island, do it bc the only one they give you lacks much detail!! Anyway, we found the trail from the guy's directions and hiked to the crater. I would call it a pretty serious hike. Lots of climbing up exposed roots and rocks. The best advice we got about the trail was to keep looking up- the trail can be lost easily and is marked sporadically by other hikers. The rainforest is beautiful, the view was covered in mist, it rained the entire way down, and we were sore for 2 days afterwards, but it was worth it for us. I would suggest packing phones and anything you want to protect in ziploc of waterproof bags in case it rains:).
We also went over the Nevis one afternoon. Be mindful of what day you decide to do things- lots of things are closed on Saturdays and Sundays. We wanted to rent a car on the island (this was before we rented ours) and after finding the Thrifty "office", which was nothing more than a phone in a drug store, we were told it was closed for the day. Much to my husband's dismay, we got a taxi and he gave us a lovely tour. It's a much more quiet, private island. If I had the resources, I would love to stay at the four seasons on Nevis. Gorgeous.
Other advice we liked was to go shopping in Basseterre on days when the cruise ships dock. That's when all the stores open. People of the island are always telling you to tell your friends about St. Kitts- they really want to increase the tourist industry. The island depends on it. It would be nice if there were other options aside from the marriott- I heard they just broke ground for a Hyatt in Christophe Harbor and I bet that will be fantastic.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Marriott St. Kitts Resort & Royal Beach Casino captivates you from the moment you see it, immersing you in the culture and atmosphere of this most relaxing and romantic of Caribbean Islands. Our breathtaking St. Kitts resort hotel offers an unparalleled island vacation experience. Luxury guest rooms, trimmed with West Indian accents and cutting-edge comforts, are spacious and welcoming. That same Caribbean flavor sets the tone in our 8 restaurants and 2 lounges. For entertainment and relaxation, the resort also offers the 35,000 sq ft Royal Beach Casino, the 15,000 sq ft Emerald Mist Spa and boasts an 18-hole championship golf course at the Royal St. Kitts Golf Club. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- St. Kitts Marriott Resort And The Royal Beach Casino
- St. Kitts Marriott Resort & The Royal Beach Hotel Frigate Bay
- Marriott Frigate Bay
- Marriott St Kitts
- Frigate Bay Marriott
- St. Kitts Marriott Resort & The Royal Beach Casino Frigate Bay