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“Exotic but not luxurious” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hix Island House

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Hix Island House
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
A TripAdvisor Member
“Exotic but not luxurious”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 July 2004

I have to agree with the first review that staying at the HIH is ALOT like camping. If you do not enjoy being outside, need air conditioning or hate bugs, you will most likely not be comfortable there. We went in the off season, so it was very wet - nothing ever dried out completely. We stayed at HIH for 3 nights, which was enough - although we're very glad to have experienced it and will do so again in the future.

The grounds and architecture are minimally invasive (very hidden) and fabulous. It's not manicured landscaping like you would find over at the Wyndam, but what would be there naturally. Beautiful. The pool area is stunning, and the water feels very clean (low chemical pool). Although we stayed on the top floor of Casa Rectangular during a booked memorial day weekend (according to innkeepers) we rarely saw or heard another person. The open floorplan gave views of the coast over the tree tops, and the nights were amazingly starry and peaceful. That same open floorplan lets the sun come glaring in EARLY (5:30 - 6 am) - so if you like to sleep late on vacation it's going to be difficult.

There is no maid service, but whenever you request something it's there. The coffee is good, the bread somewhat tasty but a little mushy (maybe its the rainy season again). Nothing on Vieques is local (ie: fruit), so expect your basic apple and orange combo flown in from mainland PR.

As for the luxury linens/furniture - we had a couple of Frette towels and I think the bedspread was from Ikea. We could care less what kind of linens are provided (again this was not luxury), or furniture - but if it's advertised as such then people expect it to be so. Also we had one very uncomfortable lounge chair made from plywood and a broken plastic armchair - so to sit together we had to perch on the balcony.

The innkeepers (Kurt and Christianne) are helpful and very interesting to talk with. Being from over-developed Florida we appreciate what John Hix has created - an attempt to be minimally invasive and environmentally conscious. Overall we would stay at HIH again not expecting luxury, but expecting a quiet, relaxing "experience."

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346 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (72)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bethesda, Maryland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 April 2004

John Hix and Neevagayle have created both an architectural wonder and a welcoming oasis on a Caribbean island that embodies all that we love about the Caribbean: aquamarine blue waters, powder sand beaches, open spaces untainted by overdevelopment, creative Caribbean influenced cuisine and beautiful weather. It is hard to put into words the way in which Hix has integrated his finished and polished concrete structures into the landscape, but it echoes Japanese tea houses where distinctions between inside and outside no longer apply. Stay in the Matisse room, you'll never think about your physical living space the same again. Mark and Guadalupe

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2 Thank mtz57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 March 2004

Our stay at Hix Island House was one of the most relaxing vacations I
have been on. I had done my homework and knew quite a bit about the
resort before I arrived. However, for me, it exceeded my expectations!

This is a beautiful place high in the hills.

Beautiful tradewinds meant very few bugs while we were there - I only got one mosquito bite during my entire stay in Vieques. Our room was large and spacious and wonderful. It was as open as they described - we had a large patio that was completely open to the outside (there is a metal grate if that makes you more comfortable at night) A ceiling fan made our nights comfortable and we never ever noticed the lack of air conditioning. The openness of our room (missing the fourth wall as we were on the ground floor) made it completely unnecessary. At the same time we were never cold either.

The kitchen contained all the utensils, plates and things we required (paper towel, etc). Neeva's potato bread is excellent and was still warm and wrapped in a linen towel when we arrived. A fruit bowl was also inviting when we checked in.

We love to cook and it was wonderful to have a spacious area to prepare
our own snacks and meals. Grocery shops are just a short drive away.
The reception desk and hostesses were incredibly helpful with
restaurant recommendations, directions, bookings, everything.

A yoga class that I did while I was there was just that - a real yoga
class where people from outside the place came to practice. Nightimes
were incredible - beautiful star watching, especially from the lounge
chairs that we had.

One reviewer from last year felt the location was not convenient.
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. In my opinion, a car is
essential for visiting Vieques. I can't imagine anyone coming to
Vieques without one. We rented a Honda Element and found we were close
to everything on the island. After a week of driving around from the
Hix Island House, our gas bill was $14US. I think the location is
central and perfect.

Part of our experience was feeling as if the place was our home. And we
truly did. We enjoyed washing our own dishes and making our bed. If we
needed anything, we simply asked reception and it was done.

Vieques was a wonderful place for peace and quiet. Most nights we 'hung
out' watching the stars or reading. We had a truly wonderful meal at
Cafe Media Luna one night - the tasting menu is fantastic. Another
highly regarded restaurant Chez Shack is just at the end of the street
(walking distance)

I will definitely be back!

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 February 2004

We have never experienced such a relaxing holiday as our few days at Hix Island House and the wonderful little island of Vieques. Vieques was a refreshing change from the other Caribbean islands we have visited, in that there was never a lineup experienced, security concerns were rarely if ever present, the beaches were incredible, and the restaurants, surprisingly for such a small place, were of exceptional quality and variety. In response to this setting, John and Neeva Gayle Hix have created the perfect complement. Imagine sleeping in a shell with an 18' wide opening to the softest breezes imaginable at your feet, and waking to the sun gently rising over the Caribbean each morning and illuminating your studio in a warm glow. The achievement of the architecture is that you have a very immediate connection to the natural environment (ocean breezes, sun and shadow, sounds of birds and coqui), yet are protected from the heat of the sun and the night-time rain showers, and can regulate it very easily by manipulating the windowless openings to the exterior. The connection between interior and exterior is often vague - living spaces that project unimpeded to the open sky, showers for each suite that are either open directly to the view or the sky or both, outdoor dining courtyards protected from the wind... The minimal, stongly geometric forms of the buildings magnify the beauty of the natural surroundings and very successfully capture the spirit of the climate. The grounds are a clever combination of wild trees and plants, with shots of colour or form presented by flowering vines and dramatic tall grasses, all orchestrated to provide privacy for the guests and a wonderful ambiance similar to ancient ruins in a jungle. One of the best discoveries is the award-winning swimming pool, with its copper-treated water and view over the hills to the ocean. The hospitality of the owners and staff were excellent, with a very well stocked refrigerator upon arrival, fresh-baked bread (which should be available for export!) and yoga lessons on site, and an eagerness to assure that guests make the most of their stay on the island by readily recommending interesting sites and good restaurants. Hix Island House is definitely a 'design destination', and in conjunction with the interests of its owners in environmental conservation, is also an experience unlike any others we know of. If you enjoy adventure and good design, we highly recommend it.

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5 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 December 2003

Hix Island House was provided a spectacular finale to my honeymoon.

Not only was the architecture fabulous, but the rooms felt private while being extremely airy and open. They have a very sensual quality to them - the rooms and the setting - the (extremely private) outdoor showers. The amenities were top-notch (fabulous pool with an awesome view), appliances and utensils were uptodate and spotless and all the details were attended to.

Lastly, Kurt and Christianna who operate the place were prompt, responsive and extremely helpful.

Go there at the right time of the year and you will also bump into the delightful proprieters : Neeva Gayle and John Hix.

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3 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 November 2003

We loved our trip to Vieques, Puerto Rico and our stay at Hix Island House. It truly is a place to go, relax and enjoy the beautiful surroundings around you. The archertecture of the buildings is brilliant. The view from our bed was the best seat in the house for a gorgous tropical storm that greeted us our first evening during our stay at HixIisland House. The gentle breezes and the warmth of the Carribean is a place you don't want to miss! There are so many unique characteristics and one of our favorite features was the outdoor shower. What a feeling to shower under the stars, but still in complete privacy. We enjoyed our time at HIH and will never forget it's beauty:)

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 November 2003

Yes, you can trust all the 5-star reviews. (In response to the reivewer who was "suspicious that the other reviews, surprisingly all 5 stars, were written by management of the property." I'm sure they were written by other travelers similar to me who found HIH well worthy of all 5 stars!)

HIH is stunningly beautiful. Somewhat like being inside a work of art, surrounded by a work of nature. The Caribbean view is framed by an open wall. I for one loved the open-air feel - balmy air, soft breeze, sudden rain, and then sun again and shocking Caribbean color. Most of all, I loved the night sounds - especially the tree frogs. And the pool, steps away, was easily the best lap pool I've ever been in. Every time we returned from an Vieques outing to the HIH, we were re-surprised by it's peaceful beauty.

  • Stayed November 2003
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hix Island House

Property: Hix Island House
Address: Route 995, km 1.5 | HC02 Box 14902, 00765, Puerto Rico
Region: Caribbean > Puerto Rico > Isla de Vieques
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 25 Speciality Lodging in Isla de Vieques
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Hix Island House 2.5*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Relax, rejuvenate and refresh midst Zen-like architectural elegance at Hix Island House, located in a 13-acre natural refuge. Our spacious lofts feature matchless Caribbean views, open-air private terraces, outdoor showers, Frette linens and luxurious lounging shirts. In-room kitchens are stocked with everything one needs to make breakfast; eggs, cereal, juice, Puerto Rican coffee, fruit, tea, jam and homemade bread. We also showcase one of the Caribbean's most magnificent pools and offer onsite Yoga and massage, daily housekeeping, full concierge and front desk services. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hix Island House Hotel Isla De Vieques
Hix Island Hotel
Hotel Hix Island

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