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Bluebeard's Castle Resort
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Reviewed 4 March 2014

The wife and I honeymooned at Bluebeard’s Castle in 1984 and fell in love with the place, especially the “cottage”. We have been going back intermittently over the years and plan to pick up the pace in retirement. The views are fantastic; the weather is great; pace is slow; the rum is excellent and cheap!

Bluebeard’s Castle is a mature timeshare facility, meaning that the inventory is sufficiently sold so as to be in the control of the Homeowner’s Associations and not of a developer. Therefore, unlike most timeshare resorts, there are no high-pressure salesmen stalking your every step. Folks can enjoy their stay in peace; but sales are available upon inquiry. One does not have to be an owner to enjoy the resort. Subject to availability, Bluebeard’s rents most any time length (days to weeks to months). There are a variety of unit sizes, configurations, views, and prices available, but all come with at least a kitchenette and most with a full kitchen. Coin operated laundry facilities are available on site. A series of small elevators make the common areas of this historic facility accessible for the disabled. There is one mid-week cleaning service per week with linen and towel exchanges, however additional cleaning services may be requested for a small fee, and additional towel exchanges are easy. A convenience store has recently re-opened on site for basic items. The entire resort staff is very friendly and helpful. Darleen, the concierge, is a gem. There are two very fine, up-scale, restaurants and two bar/grills on site. Both restaurants and one bar/grill have happy hours, and all have great views to enjoy during the experience.

Bluebeard’s is built on a hill overlooking the harbor around an original, three story, defensive watch tower from the Dutch colonial days. The tower had been closed for years, but was recently repaired, restored, and opened to tours ($5) featuring a great private collection of artifacts. If you are lucky, the owner of the collection, Sean Loughman, will be the tour guide. A fantastic panoramic view waits on the roof of the tower! The resort not within walking distance of a beach, although taxis are in plentiful supply. We find that for a week, the cost of taxi vs rental car can be basically a wash, although a rental car does provide great flexibility. Be aware that the max speed limit is basically 35 mph, and that they drive on the left.

Bluebeard’s Castle looks out on paradise, offers fine dining and romance, fantastic vistas, and the signature “island time” relaxation experience sought by so many. Give it a go!!

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view of the town so as to watch the sunsets.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank LBWiles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
seasoned_travler56, General Manager at Bluebeard's Castle Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 13 April 2014

Dear LBWiles,

First Congratulations...you were married at the Castle in 1984!! Thank you for making the Castle part of your very special day.

As I have said before it is wonderful when Owners of the resort post reviews as you know the resort and area better than most.

I will not add to your comments as you captured so much "Bluebeard’s Castle looks out on paradise, offers fine dining and romance, fantastic vistas, and the signature “island time” relaxation experience sought by so many. Give it a go!!"

We look forward to your next stay.

Thank you

Steve Buckley
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2014

My fiance and I stayed here for 4 nights 5 days during the last week of January 2014. The property is gorgeous - definitely breathtaking views and really nice to be way from the hustle and bustle of Charlotte-Amalie. However, there were some downers. I will discuss both the pros and cons:

Pros:
-The restaurants on site are exceptionally good and save you from having to pay to take a cab anywhere else
-The bartenders at Life's a Breeze near the pool are really good and attentive (way to go Jason and Matt!)
-The room had plates, cups, silverware, a microwave, shower towels, beach towels, soap, shampoo, conditioner, a hair dryer, etc. so it was nice to not have to worry about that

Cons:
-Wi-fi is $5 for 10 MINS (seriously!) in the lobby or $6.95 for a day in the room
-It is not a beachfront resort and is not within what I would call "walking distance" to a beach
-It truly is a hike to get down to and back from Charlotte-Amalie and the roads are not pedestrian-friendly. Be careful when walking!!
-They boast that the on-site "store" has coffee, which may be true, but no milk or creamer of any kind - just powder
-The rooms have this humid mustiness to them. We felt that we had to keep the A/C cranked on the whole time to try to combat but and it never really went away
-The water is indeed brown and they say that it is an island-wide problem

Tips: Be prepared to spend major money on cab fare when you stay up here. You are not going to want to do the hike up the hill to get back to Bluebeard's every single day. The cabs are $10 per person to Red Hook to get the ferry to St. John. Try to get K9-Joe as your cabbie - he's a lot of fun to talk to and has photos in his cab to share about his daughter's service in Iraq. He's also a retired Customs and Border Patrol agent. Just interesting to talk to.

Although we enjoyed our stay for the most part, we probably would not return to this particular location.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Jennifer T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
seasoned_travler56, General Manager at Bluebeard's Castle Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 13 April 2014

Dear Jennifer P,

Thank you for taking the time to write a tripadvisor review with regard to your recent stay with us.

I have to agree with you the location of the Castle gives the most outstanding views from any resort on the Island.

And while not directly on the beach we do have our gorgeous outdoor pool overlooking the cruise ships and all activities taking place. Also getting to the beach is very easy due to our location.

The Castle Store will be re-opening soon with all the amenities in place.

We hope that you will feel comfortable enough to try us again in the future.


Thank you

Steve Buckley
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2014

Bluebeard's Resort just keep getting better. Have been an owner since 1998, and have not missed a year, stayed 3 weeks this year. The view is the best on the island, overlooking Charlotte Amaliie and Havensight (where the cruise ships dock). Wonderful sun rises and sunsets, 80+ degrees in February. We had a wonderful experience of watching a moon rise one night, to our amazement it just came up where the sun rises. Most rooms have kitchens so you can cook some meals if you want to. The grocery store is in walking distance or take a cab for $4 per person. Bluebeard's is a timeshare so don't expect your bed to be changed everyday, but if you stay a week your room will be cleaned and bed changed. Entertainment is provided Sunday and Tuesday evenings and two of the top restaurants on the island are on Bluebeard's property (make reservations so you are not disappointed).

Room Tip: Ask for a view
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank Ruby46011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
seasoned_travler56, General Manager at Bluebeard's Castle Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 April 2014

Dear Ruby 46011,

5 star review....how great is that!!! Thank you so much.

I know I have said this before but it is true we are delighted to hear how much owners such as yourself love your property.

When Owners of the resort post reviews you are letting so many people know why you purchased at your spectacular property.

I will not add to your comments you captured so much..... " Paradise is Waiting for you on St. Thomas USVI, Bluebeard's Resort just keep getting better. The view is the best on the island, overlooking Charlotte Amaliie and Havensight (where the cruise ships dock). Wonderful sun rises and sunsets, 80+ degrees in February."

We look forward to your return!!

Thank you
Steve Buckley
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 February 2014

Provided that you have appropriate expectations for your stay at Bluebeard’s Castle, this is a good choice for your visit to St. Thomas.

An island landmark, this long-time resort sits atop a hill between downtown Charlotte Amalie and the rather swish Yacht Haven Grande, and the elevation here provides remarkable views of each, as well as the capital’s beautiful harbor and Water Island beyond. The shops downtown, and Yacht Haven’s boutiques and restaurants are just a short walk downhill (though many would prefer a cab back up hill to the hotel, given the slope) but most other island attractions require a taxi or rental car.

Today, Bluebeard’s is run as an interval-ownership (time share) resort, though a number of hotel booking sites make rooms available. The prices vary considerably--as do the unit types--so be sure to comparison shop carefully. In our case, I found a studio for under $100 a night for our four night stay, but also found prices nearly double to that which we got.

Service is island-inflected, and ultimately you will get checked into your accommodations. I requested a view room if it was indeed available--and the front desk agent found us a top floor unit in a building overlooking the Yacht Haven Grande, the cruise ship pier, the seaside hills, and the Caribbean beyond. The balcony was big enough for two chairs, and the unit was spacious with high ceilings, a seating area, a dining table for four, a queen bed, a small kitchen with microwave and fridge, and a standard bathroom. Flat screen TVs are a recent addition, and both the room and bathroom were clean and reasonably kept. While the Tower of Bluebeard’s Castle is a historic landmark, I don’t believe our room was in a building anywhere near as old. We had a noise issue with the guests next door the first night, but otherwise, the room was quiet.

One major expectation setter here is that the resort doesn’t have daily maid service. During our four night stay, the bathroom amenities (really basic shampoo and soap--you might want to bring your own, actually) were never replaced, the room was not recleaned, and towels for both pool and bathroom use are replaced only when you leave the dirty ones in a mesh bag outside your door. This proved cumbersome, and once, we didn’t get new towels in time for a trip for the beach.

The pool area has lovely views of the harbor and hills, as well as cruise ships. The pool is rather cold.

There are a few different restaurants on property, all owned by other businesses. A Room with a View looks as if it would be more expensive than the less formal Banana Tree cafe, but it is actually a better value--we preferred a seat on the small outdoor balcony, with its open air views. Food was good for dinner as well--and as St. Thomas is the land of the $30+ entree, customarily priced. For breakfast, there are a few seats by the pool, and a simple menu with offerings starting at $5 is served.

In all, this resort (remarkably, with four different owner associations) isn’t elegant, but it is charming, well located, and beautifully positioned for gorgeous views (be sure to find a perch for sunset, particularly if you are staying on the Charlotte Amalie side of the resort). The staff isn’t Ritz-Carlton trained, but seems eager to please, in that detached, island sort of way.

St. Thomas is an expensive island (either you will spend way too much on the communal vans and open pickup trucks that pass as taxis on St. Thomas, or be adventurous and rent a car to drive on the other side of the road from the rest of the US) and Bluebeard’s Castle is a good value in this context. If you need normal hotel services or beachside elegance, this isn’t a good pick for you. But the hotel’s views and charm will make a stay here memorable.

Room Tip: Be sure to ask for a view room. While the rooms on the Charlotte Amalie side have the favored views, those units have particular configurations, and might not have the bedding or size you need.
  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank TravelBeard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
seasoned_travler56, General Manager at Bluebeard's Castle Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 April 2014

Dear TravelBeard,

Thanks for choosing us for your recent stay. We sincerely appreciate your feedback and thank you for writing.

We look forward to your return visit.

Thank you

Steve Buckley
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 February 2014

Bluebeards Castle is an amazing resort with Amazing views. Shopping is about a 15 minute walk down the steep hills on its property. The buildings itself are much older but the staff does a great job maintaining all of its charm. This resort definitely has a lot of character and staff are very curtious and friendly. The bar has some amazing appitizers and happy hour specials and we ate there three of the seven nights. I was very happy with our view. We had a view of the side of the hills and an amazing ocean view along with some downtown city lights view. Our unit was unit 175 in building 14 in Blue Beards castle Villas 1. It was extremely spacious and made a great home for our week long stay. It had a mini fridge and a cooktop so we made food a couple of days there while marveling at the amazing views! I heard that downtown can get a little dangerous after nightfall so be warned. The hotel sits high on a hill in downtown with Security guards walking the grounds at night. The hills themselves around the castle would seem to deter anyone on foot causing mischeif. We would stay here again loved it !!
See more of our reviews on our travel blog JourneytheEarth.com

Room Tip: unit 175 in building 14 in Castle villas 1 is amazing. See if you can get this room.
  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank JourneytheEarth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
seasoned_travler56, General Manager at Bluebeard's Castle Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 April 2014

Dear JourneytheEarth,

We appreciate you taking the time to post a thoughtful review of your experience here at Bluebeard's Castle.

I agree "Bluebeards Castle is an amazing resort with Amazing views."

"The hotel sits high on a hill in downtown with Security guards walking the grounds at night. The hills themselves around the castle would seem to deter anyone on foot causing mischeif. We would stay here again loved it !"

We couldn't have said it better ourselves!

Thank you for writing.

Steve Buckley
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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