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“Still happy with the Burt”
Review of Fort Burt Hotel

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Fort Burt Hotel
Ranked #10 of 13 Hotels in Road Town
Reviewed 15 May 2013

Returned to Fort Burt after a 2 year hiatus and have no complaints. Actually I have a praise for the morning coffee and breakfast looking over the marina. So relaxing and Darciella was kind and efficient in an island time sort of way. She made the point of telling one our crew to "take time to do nothing" while sailing. Great advice that was heeded and enjoyed.

This is the perfect place to stay before a sail with TMM or Conch Charters since they are right across the street. There's also a small Riteway market across the street as well as a pub with great food and libations.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank wyowinds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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88 - 94 of 131 reviews

Reviewed 8 March 2013

A Reminisce

Originally, Fort Burt was a colonial fort situated at the highest point of land
on the southwest edge of Road Town, Tortilla. The site is now a hotel and restaurant of the same name. Relatively little of the original structure remains; however, one of the cannons has survived and stands on the veranda of the hotel, vigilantly looking over the harbour.

The fort fell into disrepair, and was acquired in 1953 by Commander Christopher
Hammersley and his wife. They built, what was then, the only hotel on Tortilla.

Subsequently, Paulina Dupont Stewartt acquired the property for a residence but,
because it was an historic site and already contained a hotel, she was unable
to have it designated for her exclusive use. Her solution was to construct a
7 room hotel in 1967. She lived in a house on the property, socialized and took
her meals with her guests. Her chef was phenomenal.

Here was a sophisticated `Dupont girl` living in a backwater part of the Caribbean
and looking for ways to make it interesting without creating long term commitments. The solution was ingenious. Make the hotel challenging, so only experienced and hardened travellers in the tropics would be attracted. Keep desirable guests coming back. Encourage those who were considered less desirable to go elsewhere.

This small hotel continued to operate with its apparent shortcomings because Paulina did not want to accommodate the maddening crowd. The hotel had many steps - it is on top of a hill. It did not have air conditioning - there were ceiling fans. It was not air tight - so bugs would come in at night, etc. etc. The intention was to attract sophisticated travellers, regardless of their affluence, by making the food
consistently excellent and the social environment interesting. Because the
motivation was not to make gobs of money, the room rates could be kept at
reasonable levels.

In the 1970`s this hotel was a gathering place for: a) under 30, Caribbean business
travellers (in those days single males), and b) entrepreneurial individuals
travelling through that part of the world. Fools, drunks, cheats, etc.
were not tolerated. There was so little crime that the hotel did not give room keys
to the guests and I never spoke to anyone who had anything stolen during the four years I travelled there. When the staff was busy the hotel had one of the few
honour bars in the Caribbean and Paulina told me it never lost money.

On a Saturday afternoon (and most other afternoons) you could sit on the
patio, overlooking the harbour, and compare, with their owners, the relative
merits of the various racing sloops moored in the bay below. Over a bottle of
single malt, I learned about Boeing’s 1972 sale of advanced airplanes to (then
enemy #2) Communist China, months before it was publicly announced. The whole process being described, with justifiable pride, by the American who had brokered the deal.

And every morning Paulina would be there at breakfast to commiserate with those
suffering from the previous night's excesses and to offer suggestions to those
planning for today. Some of the most interesting breakfast conversations of my
life occurred around that large, round morning table when everyone seemed to
have something worthwhile to contribute.

The hotel has changed hands several times since, but it appears not to have changed its fundamental modus operandi. If you are genuinely friendly and polite to the staff they will respond in kind. They will not kiss-up under any circumstances. If you want 5 star accommodations, go to the El Conquistador near Fajardo. If you are unable to carry your own luggage, or you cannot manage stairs, do not come here. But, if you are willing to accept the limitations, you might be pleasantly surprised by the rewards.

I hope to go back to the Fort Burt someday as it is one of my fondest memories
of 4 years spent crisscrossing the Caribbean in the early 1970s.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled on business
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5  Thank RossCalgary_AB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2013

We were only here for one night, which was a shame. Rooms were very large and comfortable with nice terraces with great views of the harbor. Pub right across the street for drinks and breakfast. Would stay here again when in for our charter.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with friends
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1  Thank huntejk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2013

Stayed here before and after a charter with TMM, speaking of TMM make sure you get the pictures of the hull before you leave the dock. We were accused of boat damage with no pictures of the hull before leaving, Sam said " don't worry about not having pictures " in our briefing before leaving and was very fast to blame us for damage upon returning. Fort Burt's views make up for the dated rooms, staff is nice but we called three days ahead of arrival to tell them our plane would not land until 10:30 PM and could they please wait for us. When we arrived at 11:15 the place was dark and closed up. We called and could hear the phone ringing inside the empty office. To say the least, after a full day of travel, we were not happy. Luckily we called around and "Marie's By The Sea" had their desk open until midnight so we stayed with them. More expensive but we did not care. At Fort Burt the water does not always work. Take a shower when you can, they cannot guarantee you will have any water in the mornings or night for that mater. If you like coffee in your room ask for a coffee pot, on our first stay we got one, on the return stay they never brought it. All that said the price was right and knowing what I know now I would still stay there but be prepared. Not sure if my wife would stay with me, she may go to Marie's

Room Tip: The newer rooms are nicer but you pay for them, the old rooms are fine, if you don't need high c...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank YoshiNebraska
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2013

We stayed at Fort Burt for one night before boarding a charter. It was nicely located within walking distance to a pub for breakfast and the marina, where you can hit up Pussers for some painkillers. The price was great, so we were able to look past the dated furnishings. The balcony provided awesome views and there was a restaurant on-site with a bar, both of which were very nice. Overall, it was a great place to stay for a night or two with very reasonable rates!

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Lianne D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 December 2012

This historic hotel has continued to upgrade and remodel the rooms, which all seem to come with great views of the harbor. The rooms are large and nicely furnished.

Be aware that you are more than likely going to have to climb up and down stairs to get to your room. And all rooms are accessed by walking out doors (rain or shine).

My biggest complaint is that they would not honor the room rate they booked me at. I even had the confirmation email they sent to me with a firm price, but they said they "upgraded" me to a better room and that I had to pay the higher rate. NOT HAPPY, but didn't have much choice by 11 pm when I arrived from the airport.

The restaurant is overpriced and the service is typical "island time." The food was fine, but not worth the $.

There's a Riteway supermarket nearby, but it's a good walk to get into town where most of the restaurants and stores are located. Next time I'll stay "in town."

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Luv2TravelFarNWide
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 December 2012

We stayed here before and after a boat charter. It was perfectly located to the Marina and was excellent for our needs. We stayed in the old and I mean ugly old standard rooms. They have a newer portion with upgraded rooms but we only paid 99.00 per night. We just wanted air conditioning and a shower and believe me that's all that you get. That being said, we found the staff to be very lovely. The speed at which they worked was a bit less the island time standard. ( which put it at just under agonizingly slow) I would stay there again but just for the convenience of being near the TMM marina. I would not choose this hotel for a stay lasting longer than one night. The other amenities are a restaurant with adequate food and a bit under the regular agonizingly slow speed at which all the other services are provided. They also have a very clean pool that is small but perched on a hillside with a nice view. The tiled decor on the pool is retro but in a bad way.

  • Stayed: December 2012
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1  Thank CampHiker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Fort Burt Hotel

Address: Waterfront Dr | P.O.Box 3380, Road Town, Road Town, Tortola
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > British Virgin Islands > Tortola > Road Town
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Road Town
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Road Town
Price Range: £99 - £178 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Fort Burt Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 17
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Also Known As:
Fort Burt Road Town
Fort Burt Hotel Tortola/Road Town

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