Historical Traveller Reviews of Bluebeard's Beach Club & Villas Hotel
A great potential if taken care of
We stayed at this resort in February of 2004. It took us a while to write the review but... (there are plenty of clichés that can be used here).
The location of the resort is very good - right on the ocean. Yes, there is some beach on the property but it cannot be called a good beach due to its size, water access, etc. But it is good to wet your feet or walk around in the evening. The resort area looks delapidated, it is asking for renovation. Tennis courts are useless unless you are into extreme sports. There is a guard at the entrance that is present during the evening hours but he did not show any interest in any vehicles passing through the gate. And yes, you defintely need a car there, so you can go to great beaches and restaurants that St. Thomas has to offer.
The room itself was very decent. It was actually a loft, with main level facing the ocean and bed facing the parking area. The loft was clean and of good size for two people (or 4 people if 2 sleep on the sofa and you don't mind 1 bathroom).
To sum up, we used the resort just for sleeping. There are plenty of excellent beaches on the island that require a short drive.
When we go back to St. Thomas one day, we will stay somewhere else.
from A TripAdvisor Member
We just got back from a week at Bluebeards. We bought a timeshare there in 2002 but this is the first time that we used it. I was nervous about going after reading these reviews but we had an incredible time. Our party included my husband and I, our 14 month old, another couple and there 2 year old and we brought a babysitter and we had adjoining rooms. The rooms were clean and neat and for the amount of time we were in them, they were perfect. We had a crib in our room for our son. They have just changed ownership as of June 1st and have done lots of improvments just since then. Alot of new landscaping, painting, etc. The giftshop is due to open on Aug 1 and the new restaurant should be open around then too. Right now they serve breakfast (we didn't try this, just went to the grocery store and bought stuff) and lunch. If we ate lunch there we just ordered from the pool bar. The food was great lunch food and the bartender, Jeff, was great. The beach was a little rough and rocky for the 2 children but they loved the pool and we spent days at the other beaches so it didn't matter. For dinner the hotel offered to shuttle us to one of their sister resorts but we went out to different restaurants around the island, there are some unbelievable ones there. The biggest complaint we had was the hut where you could rent snorkeling gear, kayaks, etc was only open on Sunday and Tuesday. We spoke with the new owner and she said it was run by another company and she was upset it was not open more as well. She said that she has been trying to contact them about being open more but if not she will have some stuff to rent in the gift shop. She was also telling us of their plans for the next few years and this could easily become an even better resort. We will definately be going back!!!
better than we expected
from A TripAdvisor Member
After reading some of the other reviews, I was very apprehensive about staying here. We booked through our timeshare company, not through the hotel itself. It is not luxurious, but our studio was very nice, modern and clean. The restaurant is being overhauled, but was open for breakfast which was delicious and lunch could be ordered there or through the pool bar. That it was not open for dinner was not an issue because there are dozens of great restaurants on the island. The pool was nice and clean and they were doing some new landscaping. The tennis courts are a mess, so don't count on playing there. The beach is okay. It is very rocky under the water, but is is pretty and warm. There are also so many beautiful beaches on St Thomas that it would be a waste to only use Bluebeard's anyway. Do rent a car because if you have more than 2 people in your party, the taxis will cost a fortune. We had a great time and it really is a good value. They are putting a lot of money into fixing it up even more. I would definitely go back.
Give and Take
from A TripAdvisor Member
Just got back this past Sunday, June 6. We would stay again only because we got a good deal on a seven day stay with air. There are no frills here but at least we now know what to expect. What you get is a ocean front room, ours was very clean, king sized bed, sleeper sofa, kitchnette with a nice sized sink, microwave, mini stove with burners, coffee maker (with coffee and filters), nice pots, pans, utensils, vcr, clock, dining table with very nice flower arrangement. and very nice terrace to sit and view the sea. Time sharers get better rooms. You will have to put goodies in your fridge as there is no place to eat except appetizers by the pool from 11 - 6p..tennis court is a mess..tv didnt come in clear. .Front desk service was average to below average.. I asked a front desk person where I could get ice and she told me "at the pool" only to find an icemaker two doors from my room and don't depend on them to cash your travellers checks. Make sure your cell phone can get a signal in an emergency as the front desk is open from 8a -11 pm only. Next time, we would rent a car..which you can park at your door and deal with the taxis only if you want too..Management does arrange daily excursions at a price (some w/transportation) and a weekly beach party and some entertainment at its sister resorts. There is potential to do so much more at this "resort", which has fairly decent grounds and a small private beach which is a little too rocky for me. but sadly..it is dead as a door knob. a plus for some who just want peace and quiet. Be prepared to walk aways from your room to the lobby..not a real long walk but there are steps. All in all, it's better than Bluebeard castle which is run down and the Elysian which is newer but too spread out. Basically, this is a time share resort, so you will be approached about buying one.. but you are not pressured. Botttom Line, no frills so don't pay a lot to stay here. If you get a good deal I recommend it as it really does have have a beautiful view of the beach and you are steps away from it. Spend the money you saved going to the nicer beaches. There are so many in St. Thomas.
Owners review of April 28 thru May 8
from A TripAdvisor Member
I stayed at my cottage (Bluebeard's Beach Club) with a friend during carnival. I pay more than $1,000 in maintenance fees every year and I feel cheated. I own a lock-out and each year we request a key to open the ajoining door and we are told we cannot have one. If we accidently closed the door between the rooms we have to call maintenance to open the door for us. The Televisions were not working properly, the telephone system is still not functioning properly ..we could not get messages after 10PM. The fold out couches should be replaced asap.
The restaurant was closed because of a dispute with management so we had to go into town to purchase food for breakfast and lunch. There was no common area for entertainment...music for dancing...a place to mingle...share a drink enjoy some chips. That being said, the swim-up pool bar was also closed. The bbq grill that is on site did not have any propane so many of the people who brought food were not happy. You must take a taxi everywhere you want to go , unless you rented a car and with the driving on the left side of the road, we opted for the taxi. Taxis are very costly and the fares for the week really add up. . I feel we need a shuttle at the beach to take us in town on a regular basis.
We were shuttled to the Castle for dinner and entertainment one evening while I was there. The week of carnival the shuttle was cancelled at the last minute....leaving the tentants looking for aTaxi
.I suggest Bluebeard provide transportation for at least one trip to the supermarket and make sure we have working drink machines and snack machines.
I have pictures of the awful ladies bathroom. I even have a picture of the sign on the ladies bathroom door in the reception area. that state " OUT OF ORDER" The recent Beachcomer paper stated the reception area had been renovated. "OH"
My units will probably be up for sale soon. Eight years ago when I purchased my units we had a shuttle, resturant,entertainment ,dancing, pool-tables, air hocky tables, tennnis courts and the other things I complained about.
Get this ...the maintenance fees rise each year. Why?
This review is the opinion of a TripAdvisor user and not of TripAdvisor, Inc
from A TripAdvisor Member
I satyed at Bluebeard's Villa with a friend for a week in April and while my vacation was wonderful, the hotel was average. We used my friend's mother's timeshare getaway week so we go the room for next to nothing so I really can't complain but there were a few things I would have liked to have known prior to going. They are: There is no restaurant at the hotel so we had to go into town to buys some food for breakfast and lunch. That being said, the swim-up pool bar was also closed. The bbq grill that is on site did not have any propane so many of the people who brought food were not happy. You must take a taxi everywhere you want to go , unless you rented a car and with the driving on the left side of the road, we opted for the taxi. Taxis are very costly and they fares for the week really add up. You will be asked to sit through a time share demo in order to get your VIP card which you need unless you want to pay full price for all of your day trips. There is no daily housekeeping except on Wednesdays so the floors get very sandy in the meantime. Towels are only refreshed if you call for new ones and beach towels are given one at a time at the main office and only when the used ones are returned. The setting for the hotel was nice but the hotel itself needs some TLC. If you are looking for an inexpensive way to enjoy St Thomas than I recommend this hotel. If you want to be taken care of, stay at The Elysian or the Marriott.
Needs work but some positives
from A TripAdvisor Member
The price of our stay was really good and our room was always clean. (The maid even did our dirty dishes while we were out!) The pool was very nice and well-kept. However, there were a lot of detractors to our stay.
When we checked in for our four-night stay, they had no record of our reservation (as I have seen in other critiques). We bought an online vacation package that set up the accomodations. If they continue to have this problem, shouldn't they have fixed it by now???
It was unfortunate that the restaurant and pool bar were shut down during our stay. We had to pay for taxi rides to other cafes and the grocery store. This alone is why I will stay away from this small resort in the future. The rooms were good but the resorts buildings (lobby, bar area, etc.) looked dumpy. There were no available water sports at this resort.
I saw that they were bringing sand to the resort (rocky beach) but they should have moved the sand pile from the parking lot to the beach! Fortunately, I do not play tennis since the courts look like they have never been maintained (a real swamp). We have no kids but families would be limited in activities here.
It was not until the last day did the resort provide a daily shuttle service to its sister resort, the Elysian. There were no onsite parties which would have been nice (a 2-3 hour happy hour or barbeque would have satisfied me) They could have also piped some island music around the pool. No night life or guest activities -- lame!
A better vacation would have been Blue Beard's Castle and take a shuttle here to use the beach here.
A great bargain, but not for everyone
from A TripAdvisor Member
Just returned from a 4 day stay at Bluebeards. The resort is perfect for what my family wanted, but I also recognize it's not for everyone.
Don't go to Bluebeards if you are expecting to be pampered and receive round-the-clock service at the drop of a hat. It's not gonna happen.
What you will get is a very clean, well-maintained resort that is a family-friendly environment. The beach is nice and offers some of the very best snorkeling ANYWHERE, but it's not a pristine, white, sandy beach - there are rocks just off the shoreline, but they aren't too bad. Not a big deal for me, because the rocks actually make for some great snorkeling. The pool was closed for repairs while we were there, but it appeared to be a nice pool. Some advice for first-timers: rent a car if possible. The Beach Club is just far enough away from town and the other resorts to make taking a taxi or riding the shuttle a pain-in-the-neck. Also, on your first morning there, go into town and go to the large supermarket or K-Mart and buy some breakfast, lunch and snacks. Eat dinner on the East End or the Waterfront. There is a restaurant/bar at the hotel, but it's pitiful. The drink machine (yes I said THE) was completely out of drinks. Other than those 2 minor complaints, I was extremely satisfied and wouldn't hesitate to stay there again if we return to St. Thomas.
t deserve any customers
from A TripAdvisor Member
The positive and negative themes in the earlier reviews are all accurate. (1) The rooms themselves are clean, pleasant, reasonably well maintained, & have a functional little kitchen and a little balcony with a nice ocean view, especially nice when the lit cruise ships emerge from the neighboring Havensight harbor after sunset. My only real complaint about the room was that the A.C. was a loud window unit rather than central air. (2) Reservation management and the front desk are a terrible combination of incompetence and indifference. In our case, they disavowed any knowledge of a 5th-night-free special from their OWN RESERVATION SITE (Extra Holidays) despite my presenting a printed copy of their confirming email and the web page. The clerk kept us waiting at the desk for over an hour at checkout while a succession of her managers on the phone denied knowing anything about their promotion. At the end, they gave us the lower price, then surcharged our credit card anyway after we left!! (BTW, while the desk clerk was waiting for a callback, she refused to detour from her wait to walk 6 feet to get a phonebook for another guest whose reservation via Travelocity had apparently been lost completely.) This resort would have real potential with first-rate management. Even though I liked the place, I would NEVER deal with these people again. (3) The pool is basic, but it's fine, you can order drinks & food from seats in the water, and the kids had fun. The beach is nothing like the description of Limetree Beach I saw in some guidebooks - it's rocky and the breakers are hard against the shore - I wouldn't let my kids go in unless I was right there. Much better to put in your beach time somewhere like Coki Beach or St John. (4) The restaurant is open-air and a nice place to sit, and the wait staff are friendly, but it's very slow and the food is just OK for the relatively high prices. I'd recommend doing most meals elsewhere. (5) You'll need a taxi or rented car to get anywhere from here. St Thomas taxis charge by the person, and for luggage, so a $10 cab ride can turn into $35 for a family of 4, which gets expensive real fast -- we negotiated a 5-day fixed-fee deal with "Mr Nice Guy" Taxi that worked out pretty well, although his entrepreneurial spirit inconvenienced us some times when his double and triple bookings didn't quite dovetail. (6) My bottom line is that if you have modest expectations and are luckier with the booking than we were, this place has some real charms, but don't expect anyone in charge to cater to you or to care that they don't.
s Beach Club!
Just returned from two weeks in St. Thomas at Bluebeard's Beach Club! Most of the tourists there were time-share owners, not renters like us. I did go listen to the time-share spiel but did not buy in. We had a studio with tile floors; unit comes w/full-size refrifgerator (ice-cube trays in freezer), 2-burner stove top, coffee maker, toaster, dishes, glasses, pots & pans, silverware, cooking utensils, iron, ironing board and a built-in hair dryer in wall of bathroom. Use bottled water to drink and for cooking & ice. None of the natives drink the tap water. Water pressure was less than strong, however, the whole island is like that. Each room has a balcony w/plastic table & 4 chairs - balcony overlooks the beach and the ocean - lovely. At night, the exiting cruise ships go by all lighted up - super snapshot! Housekeeping services were excellent. Workers at front desk were friendly and courteous - for better service, it makes a difference in a good way if you greet people with a "good morning", "good afternoon", etc. Grounds had some deferred maintenance, but not awful. Lawns need work & puddles on tennis courts. Beach is rocky but there's a spot on the far right with hardly any rocks. There's a beach party on Tuesdays. We saw two different weddings at the club when we were there. There are iguanas and sand crabs on the premises. Food at the restaurant (Kristia's) was only so-so and overpriced. We had lunch there upon our arrival and breakfast there the last morning. We ate all of our breakfasts in the studio and about half of our meals there. The other half of the meals we ate out - some expensive ($100 for 2 people), some middle-priced. Best dinner of the whole trip was at "Smugglers" at the Grand Bay Palace. Also fabulous was "Room with a View" at Bluebeard's Castle - not a bad seat in the house - overlooks the bay where cruise ships dock. Ate twice at a West Indian restauraunt in town called, "Cuzzins" - very good. Shopping is superb - jewelry at "Cardows" and "Diamonds International" - linens at "Mr. Tablecloth" - liquor & cigarettes at "A.H. Riise". Took the ferry to St. John's one day - had a great island tour with "Rodney". Took the ferry to St. Croix one day ($62.50 each round=trip) ate at a place in called "Talk of the Town" - good & reasonable. We rented a car (they drive on the other side of the road. Roads are curvy and steep.) We had a great time - can't beat the weather - 83 degrees and gorgeous daily! We would return to Bluebeard's Beach Club!
Top Local Tips for Charlotte Amalie
Taxi's are a bit pricey...rental car is a good idea, but you do need to be prepared to drive on the left side of the road... we rented a car, the islanders do drive like nuts, but they are great about letting you out...it is busy and the roads are narrow and in terrible condition.. Food Centers are not within walking distance, actually nothing is really within walking distance..
Kmart is the best value on the island - we bought groceries, alcohol (cheapest rum on St. Thomas), and even sunblock once we got to the island. There are 2-3 on the island, open late and well stocked.
Rent a car!
Make sure to rent a car as the taxi fares will kill your budget -- driving on the left isn't so bad. With a car you can grocery shop (Cost U Less is cheap way to load up on groceries), visit the many beaches, drive into Charlotte Amalie to shop, take the car ferry to St. John ($40 for the vehicle and passengers - round trip -- can't beat that!) We like eating dinner at different restaurants and it's much cheaper to drive!