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Reviewed 13 May 2012

Just stayed at GBTS a couple weeks ago. I can't recommend it highly enough. The location is excellent -- just over the hill from town, so you have easy access to the shops and restaurants there, but still feel a little removed from the hustle and bustle (well, as much of that sort of thing as there is in the Caribbean!). The room (we stayed in the Terrace View) was spotless and nicely appointed. And the service! Gail and Peter were there when we arrived, and they were incredibly nice and hospitable, but halfway through our stay Nancy and John returned from their sabbatical. They'll be there going forward. And while they had a tough act to follow, they are every bit as warm and helpful as Peter and Gail are. And Nancy is one heck of a cook! Breakfasts were better than anything you'd get at a hotel, by a mile. And upon departure, John was nice enough to drive our bags to the ferry dock for us so we didn't have to carry them through the path or over the hill. Again, cannot recommend GBTS enough. The next time we are in St John we will be staying there for sure!!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Stephen H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 May 2012

One of my favorite B&Bs that I’ve encountered in my world traveling. Our room was lovely - nicely decorated. The bathroom was amazing which comes with your own private garden. Yes! in the bathroom. The host was helpful. Breakfast was good. Everything was perfect.

If you like to have a low-key night, they have a microwave and refrigerator in the common space, so you can sit outside on the patio and have dinner listening to the birds. It's a reasonable walk to a nice market which sells Amy’s meals, artisanal cheeses, wine and beer.
Also a 5 min walk to the local beach (its small and rocky, but quiet).

Just some thought on restaurants in St John
Great place to see the sunset is a place called Beach Bar.
The Banana Deck and Margarita Phil's are nice reasonably-priced good restaurants.
Our favorite dinner was at Rhumb Line. Excellent Pad Thai.
All these restaurants are in walking distance from the Inn.
Many restaurants in St. John have veggie options, or at least a veggie burger is on the menu.

From the Inn you can walk 20-30 minutes to the local beaches. Nice to walk to Caneel property for lunch/drinks or for their beach, which is open to the public.

Do venture out to Cinnamon Bay which is a nice relaxing beach. They also have a restaurant.
Leinster Bay & Waterlemon Cay has some great snorkeling for starfish and turtles. Do watch out for mongoose on the beaches. They will eat anything you leave out, whether its your snacks or your socks.

You really don't need to rent a car. The taxis are reasonable, but they do drive fast. If you have time, try to rent a dingy for about 75 dollars - this would be a great way to see all the beaches on the island. We did take a day trip to the BVI, which was nice experience
(for an expensive price.)

Have fun!

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank manrayliz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 April 2012

This was our first Trip the GBTS. We stayed in the Terrace View Room. Gail and Peter are the wonderful hosts. They are kind, EXTREMELY knowledgeable about the island and great cooks. They make the experience of being not only at the B&B but the whole island better. They are your personal guide to dinning, activity and adventures. You can tell that it is very important to them that their guests enjoy themselves. They have everything you need from beach chairs, maps to a local phone and menus to all the restuarants. If you are looking for a beautiful place to visit that is low key but still has plenty of things to do (Hiking, snorkel, diving,sailing,beaches, restaurants, nightlife ect) but with out the crowds go to GBTS see Gail and Peter and forget everything else as soon as you get on the plane. I cant wrtie everything about this place you just need to go and enjoy it for your self.

Room Tip: The Terrace View is nice because it is up off the main living floor and you have the most privacy.
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Jed M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2012

We've stayed at GBTS three years in a row. We're already making arrangements for next year. Take a look at the photos--the inn is charming. It's old fashioned, painted with all sorts of vivid colors, plants all around, wrap-around deck. The second we arrived--after all the stress that travel involves--we plopped down, and we're shortly whisked away into "island time." I could sit on the deck for hours and watch the hummingbirds and bananaquits at the feeders, look at the sea glass windchimes, watch the birds on the salt pond, watch the sailboats go bye. Did I mention it has a sunset view? At night, it's very cool to see the lights on St. Thomas.

Previous years we've stayed in the Garden Suite (very cool outside shower). This year we opted for the Terrace View, which is on the 2nd floor. It has its own private little deck, with two rocking chairs. In the morning, we'd sit and sip our coffee and watch the day unfold. There are only three rooms, and our fellow guests have always been interesting and friendly. This year, we coincided with Bob and Marge from Cape Cod, whom we met last year. All of the repeat guests tells you something--this is a very comfortable place to vacation.

Our hosts were Peter and Gail (and their yellow lab Madison Ann). Lovely folks, have lived on St John for years, know everybody and everything, and offer great suggestions and insights on St. John. It was always great to sit around and chat over breakfast. The breakfast--wow, Gail can really do some special things. Fresh fruits and breads, eggs benedict, pina colada french toast, oatmeal/pecan pancakes with orange butter sauce, sausages, bacon. Yum yum yum. Always juice and smoothies, too. We always saved our smoothies for 5'oclock post-beach consumption (with a shot or rum or vodka).

Other things I like about this place
1) it's in a quiet residential part of Cruz Bay, but a very short (and mostly flat) walk into town. Although we do rent a jeep to drive to beaches, at nighttime we leave the jeep parked and walk into town for dinner.
2) GBTS provides all of the beach paraphenalia that we need--chairs, towels, beach blankets,coolers. It makes our time on the beach so much more comfortable, and it's great not to have to lug this from the States.
3) There's an honor bar (beer, wine, spirits) in the common kitchen. Also, each guest room is provided with a shelf in the common fridge.
4) The common room is delightful, and there are all sorts of books about St John, brochures, Natl park info. There are games, and books should you get bored. (How can you possibly be bored on St. John). Also a phone to make reservations.
5) The guest rooms are lovely. Four poster beds with decorative netting. Paddle fans. Vivid colors on walls and tiles. White curtains that billow in the island breezes. Island prints on every wall. There's a CD player in each room. The rooms are air-conditioned--sometimes needed, sometimes not. Nice to have the option.

We stayed for 10 days this trip. Every morning, after breakfast, we'd hit the road, pick up a snack at the Grotto Deli in Mongoose Junction, and drive to on of St John's lovely beaches. As you probably know, you drive on the LEFT in the US Virgin Islands. We adapt pretty quickly. The STEEP and twisty roads can be a bit intimidating, but speed limit is 20 mph (10 mph in town). If you're a timid driver, stick with cabs or the bus line that goes all the way to the other end of the island. There are many jeep rental places, and they rent for about $75-$85/day, depending on size. There is a single solitary gas station on the island; price is about $1 higher than States. We like it for the mobility. There are plenty of places to park at GBTS.

After a day of beach time, swimming snorkeling on one of St. John's beautiful beaches, we might head into the Tap Room for a Virgin Island IPA. Or head back to the inn for a shower, clean clothes, and cocktail hour. Then a walk into town for dinner at one of the many good restaurants.

Go to sleep, wake up, repeat.

Room Tip: All three rooms are nice. Terrace View has its own little porch and rockers, and is very sunny in afternoon. Wild Ginger and Garden Suite are downstairs, and each has a very cool outside shower.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank Bobbie_and_John_Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2012

This was our second “tour” at the Garden by the Sea. My intent here is to tell everyone that my Wife and I could not have been happier about our 8-night stay. Words will fail me but let me give it a try…. Gail and Peter were each very helpful, thoughtful, kind, and every other superlative anyone could think of… I am a little (ok, a lot) picky on the food side. Gail made the issue go away…. If she was preparing something for all the other guests that she knew was not something I would eat, she made something else for me. Thank you very much Gail! Peter was equally important to us as he helped with our baggage, gave us all the perfect info for things to do and places to eat… Thank you very much Peter! St John is a very special place; Gail and Peter made it even more so! Thanks again for everything, Anne and Richard.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank richardpreus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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