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Sebastian's on the Beach
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Reviewed 13 February 2009

Sebastiens is ok for what you pay. The rooms(garden) were fine,although a blood stain on the wall above the bed was there when we arrived and still there when we left 2 days later. The restaurant was actually quite good and had great atmosphere. Most of the staff was fine but the hotel receptionist and one of the morning waitresses really didn't seem to give a [--] and seemed actually annoyed that we were there. The receptionist actually refused to call me a cab because I had only waited 15 minutes for the one that I had booked for the return to the airport that had yet to arrive. She finally called me one after I explained to her that missing our flights was going to cost us lots of money and that wasn't going to happen. We were there on a sailing charter with BVI yacht charters and loved the charter. I can't say I would recommend the BVI's as a land based trip. I really didn't find the people very friendly for the most part. Although no one bothers you to buy stuff. The island itself was actually quite dirty in areas(near Sebastiens and The SugarMill) with garbage strewn everywhere. There were even abandoned cars at the side of the road that had been there for months. Overall we loved the charter but wouldn't stay on the Island again. BTW I have never complained about any vacation I've ever been on. I just don't think they have the whole hospitality thing down yet.

Stayed: February 2009
3  Thank Tony026
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 May 2008

We spent 8 nights at Sebastian’s Seaside Villas. We did request the second floor and was given room 57 on the second floor. We enjoyed our stay there very much. The rooms were clean, staff was friendly and helpful. View was great. We never heard any noise from other guest. Internet access was easily available at the restaurant, which we used every day with our laptop. I would not hesitate to stay there again.

  • Stayed: May 2008, travelled as a couple
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Thank Beachtraveler23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 May 2008

After a 2-night (pre-sail) stay at Sebastian's I can echo almost everything written here. Of course you get what you pay for (when you plan in advance), and Sebastian's gave us an amazing value for what we paid for our "garden courtyard" room. Tortola may not have the "service with a smile" cuture you can find some other places, but they make up for it by offering a wonderfully authentic and laid-back Caribbean experience. Everyone from the receptionist, to the dining room staff and housekeeping took care of us (and the property) very well from the moment we arrived to the moment we left. We felt welcomed and valued, even without any chatty, smiley small-talk. Then again, we're from New England, which isn't known for being friendly :)

The beachfront location of Sebastian's is perfect or less-than, depending on your needs. The beach is rocky and prone to surf, which was spectacularly gorgeous and great fun for us, but could easily be disappointing and intimidating for others, especially since there is no pool. Long Bay Beach is a 15 minute walk up and over a hill, and sandier (at the far end) but can also get waves - which was awesome for body surfing!

Our room was much bigger than I expected (for the $$), and the fridge and hair dryer were more than I expected. But as you can tell, I wasn't expecting all that much except a comfortable, clean room at a beachfront "resort" with an on-site restaurant and bar. The extra long drying rack (as well as the line outside) were very nice and very appreciated touches. But don't use the razors they supply!

We had two very good dinners and a wonderful breakfast - we enjoyed the food and service so much we weren't motivated to seek out anywhere else to eat, even though we thought we would try Bananakeet b/c of all the good reviews. We just couldn't tear ourselves away from the mesmerizing ocean waves, especially when the menu (special) changed every night. The dining room is right on the beach - delightful!

We used the beach more than most other people there, and since we didn't have a beachfront room we used their loungers. There were plenty, but it was never crowded or even all that full -- this was the end of the week right before school vacation week. Snorkeling wasn't too bad off this beach despite low visibility and considerable waves -- lots of parrotfish. We saw turtles and tarpon at Long Bay.

Besides the beautiful and tranquil setting, we found Sebastian's had a very private feeling to it. I guess that's because it is a pretty small property. Some of the reviews talk about being "far away" -- I think this must be the "villas" which are larger (and probably newer) accommodations which are down the road a ways. Staying in these would definitely change the "flavor" of Sebastian's, because you would be further from the beach and bar/dining room, which is really its charm. But I didn't see the units which are also right on the water, and they may be spectacular.

If you are deciding whether Sebastian's is right for you, it depends on 2 things: what kind of beach are you looking for, and what kind of "amenities" are important to you on vacation. Most bare-boat sailing charterers will find Sebastian's perfect, but then we're used to camping (on a boat.). But if you have a picture of Cane Garden Bay's beach in your head, you won't find that here. But its on-beach location is most of the appeal of Sebastian's - it's just the coziest most relaxed beachfront setting I have ever seen or experienced (and I've travelled extensively in the Caribbean). You will be charged for coffee in the morning, and you will probably see hard water stains on the porcelain, and maybe some ill-fitting tiles in the bathroom. There are roosters crowing at all hours (including 5:30 a.m.) and strutting across the patio and it can be noisy at night (socializing by local residents), although the air conditioner was more than enough "white noise" for us.

Based on our experience, I strongly recommend Sebastian's, and we hope to be able to go back. Our last 2 days were in St. Thomas (Sapphire Bay Beach Resort) and we agreed we like Sebastian's better, even though the room and "resort amenities" were better at Sapphire Bay (but double the $$).

  • Stayed: April 2008, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank lhimml
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2008

"Passengers on the port side can see the gigantic waves," the pilot announced as we made our descent to San Juan. This prepared us for what we could expect in Tortola. But a driver met us at the airport and after some harrowing switch backs we arrived at Sebastian's.
The front desk is the counter for a liitle convenience store (open 7 AM - 10PM) selling sundries and a wide array of beverages. We had a room at the rear of their palmy courtyard. It wasn't on the ocean, but it was secluded and romantic. Don't come here if you want TV or phone; although WIFI is available. We found the mini-frig. in the room handy; a very effective AC , ample lighting, overhead fan, basic amenities (incl. hair dryer) long hanging rack and spacious bureau. A small deck outside our room enclosed the courtyard and provided a line to hang our wet swim suits from. The courtyard itself had some chairs and tables and was a great place to meet other guests.
Unfortunately the storm had littered the nomally sandy beach with detritus. Bad for sandcastles, but it didn't slow down the surfers - they loved the storm surge.
We travel for various reasons: sometimes we crave the glitz of Vegas or Nassau. This time we wanted a low key getaway. What we found was reasonably priced and perfectly comfortable.
Atmosphere is important to us. Waving palms, crashing breakers, roadside craft huts and and scampering goats and fishing egrets make a welcome complement to the neon of the strip.
The nightlife within walking distance of Sebastian's may be low watt, but we weren't bored. Bomba's Shack, one of the most (in?)famous beach bars in the Caribbean is a five minute stroll. Sugar Mill: elegant dinners (reservations recommended) is just a little further down the road
When we 'dined in' we enjoyed ample breakfasts, hearty lunches and nightly dinner specials featuring a soup and entree served in a dining room overlooking the water. Sunday night they have live music.
Sebastian's is conveniently located near Soper's Hole where a number of day sail boats are moored. Taxis are expensive on Tortola, but we found the staff to be efficient and reliable in arranging taxi pick-ups for us when we needed them. Some day sails will make arrangements to have you picked up and returned (e.g. Windsquall II.)
The scene at Sebastian's is definitely for those who go to the Caribbean to escape from the high tech world (ecept for WIFI) and sip rum punches, watch the surfers from a table at the seaside court and kickback. If this is your idea of an island escape, it will probaby work as well for you as it did for us.

  • Stayed: March 2008, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank benellen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2008

We just got back from our trip to the BVI's sailing on a catamaran for a week. The 3 day stay beforehand at Sebastian's was perfect! I agree with other reviews that you need a beachfront room. We had a garden room booked until we got there and decided to upgrade to beachfront. Rooms were clean and spacious, and just feet from the ocean, beautiful view of Jost Van Dyke. Had great breakfasts in the open air restaurant, and they made superb coffee at 7:00 in the morning to help yourself. We loved the touch of rooster's on the beach, this is what makes it special. If you're looking for life as you have it at home, then dont travel to remote places. Our best find was the Bananakeet Restaurant which sits high on the hill in Carrott Bay. This place is not advertised, but views, food and ambience is spectacular. We were so impressed, we decided to go again at the end of our trip......what a great way to end the trip to the BVI's. I would definately go back to Sebastian's. Yes the staff are a little reserved until they get to know you. Remember, not everyone in the world are as friendly as American's, but that's what makes travelling interesting! Overall great place for some R&R!

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3  Thank CaribbeanSailors
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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