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first timers - hoping to come in February

illinois
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first timers - hoping to come in February

We are looking forward to a vacation away from "life" ! From what i've read here on the forums, it sounds like St. Croix is the island we will love! We are simply wanting relaxation, some snorkeling, book reading on the beach, - where do we want to stay?

St. Croix
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1. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

Check out Tamarind Reef Hotel. They have nice rooms overlooking the water, a small quiet beach, and great snorkeling. It is located on the east end of the island next to The Buccaneer. There are big (quiet) beaches on either side of the hotel the best of which is Shoys Beach (fabulous snorkeling there on the outside of the reef on the east end). There is a very good upscale restaurant at the marina next to Tamarind plus a nice beach bar/restaurant (The Deep End) located at the pool at Tamarind. There are lots of restaurants within a 10 min drive also. While on island be sure to go on TanTan Tours all day trip. It is well worth the money and is lots of fun. Also visit Whim Plantation and the Lawaetz home to get an idea of life in the old days.

South Bend, Indiana
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2. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

You sure picked the right island in my opinion. It is a gorgous, relaxed island and in my opinion unspoiled by commericialization. The shops are small and the staff is friendly. The only problem you might run into is not enough time to sample all of the great restaurants and places to eat! We stayed at Pelican Cove and even though there is The Palms, Pelican Cove (condos), and Hibiscus on this stretch of beach we felt like we had the beach to ourselves. Very seldom did we run into other people. Pelican Cove is has very nice units (2 bdr., 2 bath, kitchen, dining and living room) washers and dryers; patios/balconies and a great pool and hot tub. The reef is in front of this particular place so you need to walk down to the Palms (about 3 minutes along the beach) to swim and snorkel. Whatever you choose I think you will really like how peaceful and beautiful St. Croix is.

boston
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3. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

You want get any of us regulars on the board saying anything but, Of course, STX is the place :) But, really, for what you say you like to do on vacation, I think you've picked a great spot.

What's your accommodation budget? There are lots of options depending on what you'd like to spend. And how many are travelling with you?

Groves, Texas
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4. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

I agree with the above two posters-- both these places are nice. It would help us in our recommendations if we knew what you were looking for. Do you want a villa, a condo, a hotel, or a B&B? Are you used to upscale or would you rather have 'quaint'? (for instance, how many 'stars' are you looking for?) Does it need to be right on the beach, easy walking distance to a beach, short drive to a beach, up in the hills, etc? There are many options on St Croix!

Edited: 23 September 2011, 20:08
San Diego...
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5. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

Illinois Mom, it has all that and more. What STX lacks in urban amenities (shopping malls & nightlife), it pays in spades in relaxation (gorgeous empty beaches and snorkeling). Nearly every property is "ocean view" or right on the ocean, so that's one given. I'd add the Cruzan Rum Factory, Farmers Market, Sea-Thru Kayaks, daily cane and coconut water from The Sugar Cane Man, a Dinner Buffett featuring Mocko Jumbies, Domino Club beer-drinking pigs and mamawanna cocktails, and tours of both forts in Frederiksted and Christiansted to the above recommendations. DO be sure to get a rental car, this small island is a "breeze" to self-tour at your own pace, with a minimal investment in research, and nearly anywhere you're within a 30 or 40-minute ride by car. Even the dirt roads are quite passable in the rain forest by 2wd jeep or minivan. The locals are surprisingly sociable and eager to share their bit of paradise. I'm gong to put some Bill Bass on now, stir the kalalloo, and go back to my own staycation...

…snapfish.com/snapfish/…

illinois
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6. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

These are great replies - I'm looking at this condo

www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p170824

But the Tamarind Reef looks great too! I don't need 5 stars by any means - quaint is perfectly acceptable - clean is a must of course!

Beach front - would love to be able to just walk out our door onto the beach!

There will be 4 of use - 2 couples......

Thanks again!

Suzanne

Wheaton, Illinois
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7. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

Colony Cove or any of the condo developments in what is known as "condo row" would not be my choice if I were looking for a condo on STX. Just my opinion, but Pelican Cove, Coakley, Villa Madeleine or Gentle Winds would be better bets. For pretty beachfront, then Gentle Winds would be my #1 pick. The I & J buildings are closest to the beach.

Happy planning!

- Margy

Boston
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8. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

I agree with Margy! Not my first choice.

Groves, Texas
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9. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

The homeaway condo you have posted is in Colony Cove and has a housing development very close to it. We've driven around in that area and it looks ok, but then the neighborhood that goes back out to the main roads looks pretty iffy. JMO

We've stayed at the Pelican Cove condos which are on the beach, but you have to walk up the beach about 3 min to get to a sandy bottom where you can enter the water since the reef starts in this area. If you look on The Palms website you can see what I mean. www.palmspelicancove.com

The green roofed building at the bottom is The Palms restaurant and this is where you enter the water. The Palms Hotel are the two white/yellowish buildings at the top left, the Pelican Cove condos are at the top right, and the pool you can see at the top right is theirs. A couple of tropical systems have gone close by the island in the past couple of years and the beach has been eroded from this picture quite a bit. I would give everything in this area a 3-4 star, depending on how updated the condo you stay in is. We stayed in Pelican Moon:

www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p207002 and even though it was not facing the beach, it was a short walk. We're in our late 50's and not in the best shape and did the beach walking with ease. The pictures of the condo were very true to what we found.

Gentle Winds is also one of the set of condos that are right on the beach. We've not been inside them, but they look very nice from the outside. The beach is very nice and well kept up.

Tamarind Reef is in a nice area, has a nice long beach, but if you like to swim the water doesn't appear to be more than knee deep inside the rocks. It's supposed to be great for snorkeling just outside this area. And there are very nice beaches close to Tamarind that are a short ride away.

The Buccanner is your classic older hotel in the tropics. You can see the beach very well if you go under youtube and type in St Croix or Buccanneer. They have 2 or 3 different beaches. This would be my pick if I decided on a hotel.

Margyz is your villa expert on this forum! If you decide on a villa she's the go to girl.

Hope I haven't confused you,

Paula

Arkansas
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10. Re: first timers - hoping to come in February

We recently stayed at Cottages by the sea and loved it. Very relaxing, cute rooms right on the beach.