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Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa
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Reviews (1,282)
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Reviewed 18 February 2012

The good:
I just stayed at the resort 2/10-2/15 and had a new room (175) and it was beautiful. The unit had a large living and sleeping area with a huge bath. The bed was super comfy and the linens were nice quality.

If you can, get a second floor unit. They have pitched, high wood beam ceilings that really make the room feel huge.

The screened in porch was the best part. Any time we were in the room, we were on the porch. It has two built in banquet seats that you could sleep on (if you don't mind a firm bed). The grounds are clean and could use a little updating and landscaping but it was not bad-it’s just not a highly manicured property like many resorts tend to be.

The beach is short-maybe 1/4 or 1/2 mile or so, but the water is wonderful and clear and the sand is soft and white. There were never many people on the beach so there was never a problem getting chairs. There was a little bar on the beach, but I never saw it being used.

The beach is on the north side of the island so you don’t get those famous tropical sunsets. But that’s only a minor point. The property sits up against some really tall verdant hills which make for a beautiful back drop. Reminds me of Kauai.

The snorkeling and scuba seemed really nice and there is a dive shop right on the beach. I looked like they rented boogie boards and snorkel gear as well as had tours.

The bad:
The service was just really bad. There is just an overwhelming sense of apathy from the staff. They never responded to several emails-only after emailing Marriott Corporate directly did we get any response and it was curt and still didn't answer the questions.

On check in, it was just odd : The guy checking us in seemed like he was reading a script. No eye contact and certainly no warmth. He peeked out from behind the computer monitor once or twice.

I think we were the first people to stay in the room as the TV hadn't been set up yet ,there was no remote, it looked like a cook top was going to be added to the kitchenette (there was cut out in the counter top) and they forget to put a router in the room so we didn’t get wi-fi.

I called about the Internet being down and the guy on the other end said “Okay” then hung up- no explanation or we’ll get to that, or even to bad…just a dial tone. 8 hours later (at 9:30 p.m) some guy shows up to fix it. I asked him to come back the next day, he never showed up again.

They take your luggage via golf cart to your room. On check out, I called to have the cart come get the luggage and he never showed up. I decided to take it myself, I go down and there is a guy at another unit with a golf cart and I ask him if he’s looking for me. He says my room number and I say yes, it’s over there pointing two buildings away…he argues with me as to where the room is…if he had got out of the cart and came to the room he’d see he was wrong. I guess they don’t make the effort to come up and let you know they are there, much less help you down the stairs with the luggage.

There was only one place for breakfast, one place for lunch and dinner. The resort is pretty isolated, so you don’t have a lot of options.

Food at the restaurant was okay. Pretty basic menu items, but the service again was just terrible. We ate there 3 or 4 times and it always took at least 45 minutes to get our food. One night it took more than an hour. The servers were quite nice and very apologetic but still the restaurant was never more than 1/2 full so you can't really blame it on a rush/busy night.

We asked where the closest grocery store was, and the front desk gave us some complicated directions to one about 5 miles away-after driving around we stumbled on one that was maybe 2 miles away-easier to get to and much nicer and cleaner than they one they sent us to.

Another note is that it looked like some rooms had full sized fridges and stoves, but our room had a mini-fridge and no cooking equipment which didn’t’ matter to us. But if you want that, you may have to ask for a room with a better equipped kitchen when you check in.

So these sound like petty complaints and one–by-one they are not that big of a deal, but for $300+ a night, I guess I expected a higher level of service.

Over all, I would stay again - the trip was fun and relaxing (there is nothing to do on St. Croix) . But just don’t expect to be pampered or even acknowledged. And demand an updated room.

Room Tip: Get a second floor room. Ask for an remodeled room. The waves are loud so you may not want a room right on the beach.
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank MeinDenver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 February 2012

We came here on a special from Cheap Caribbean, so I guess, we didn't pay as much as they charge regularly, but we still paid quite a bit and expected to have a nice time. The first night we were accommodated in an old room. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either. Then the person that was staying above our room, flooded his room and consequently ours, so we were moved to a renovated room. (BTW, they are working on renovations as we speak). The new room was amazing. Really nice, very close to the beach (which ended up being a little annoying, because the sound of the waves was way too loud at nights), but the difference was great. The resort itself, is situated in a great location. We loved it; the turquoise beach, with great snorkeling, great room, awesome amenities (bar, pool) and not amazing, but pretty good food on the property - we had a really good time. It felt like a honeymoon to us. So I strongly recommend this resort, but if any way possible, ask for a renovated room - you will love it.

Room Tip: If possible, ask for a renovated room.
  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Tudysem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 February 2012

My husband and I just returned from a week at this amazing resort. We were in one of the newly remodeled units/rooms. It was clean, beautiful and the view was breathtaking. I so enjoyed coffee on the private screened deck/porch. We spent most of our days on the beach enjoying the soft sand and the sound of the surf, however the pool area is very nice complete with comfortable lounge chairs. The entire staff from check in to check out were professional, helpful and oh so very pleasant. We will definitely return next year to this same resort.

Room Tip: We stated in building 16 on the 2nd floor - It was beautiful!
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Lora K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 February 2012

If you're looking for a hotel near shopping, casinos, or with tons of water-sports and activities - I'd stay somewhere else. If you want the most beautiful location on St. Croix (if not all of the carribean), where you feel that the ocean, the rain forest, and hotel amenities are all for you - this is it! We've stayed at other island resorts where you have to get a chair early at the beach or pool - or you're out of luck. This is the most relaxed setting you will ever find. The flip side of that is, as the hotel is in the re-modeling stage, there isn't enough business to warrant more than one restaurant for breakfast, one for lunch and dinner. It has a quiet, laid back atmosphere because the resort is empty now. Once all the villas are remodeled, the resort should be a bit more hectic, but not crazy as the number of possible rooms cannot be as large as some of the other Marriott island properties. We stayed here last year at high season and the management seemed overwhelmed with the work that needed to be done, and ran the other way when guests approached. Management this year seems more involved and seems to have a better sense of what it takes to get people to come back.
Talking with other guests, we agreed that this is the best kept secret if you're happy doing nothing! Nice to have the kitchens too so you don't have to eat out every meal!

Room Tip: Ask for a remodeled room - some of the villas are shabby and raw from the time-share phase.
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank akinsrule
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2012

My husband and I have been going to this resort for 15 years. We have seen many changes through out the years, including owners. The Marriott people know they have a good thing here and lots of potential! I think this property was originally an old Rockefeller resort..it has a lot of mahogany exteriors and interiors, and reminds me of other Rock resorts I have visited. It's not bright and shining, but rich and old. The renovated rooms very nice, a little dark, but pleasant and roomy! The older rooms are the same size, and a value to your wallet.

We still see the many of the same employees that we saw many years ago, so it speaks highly of the place. The staff is friendly and always welcomes us back. They are a fairly recent Marriott acquisition, so they are adjusting..But it's obvious to me that their new training has hit the mark.

I love this beach! There are no other resorts next to this one, all you see are mountains and water. It looks like Hawaii to me. Good body surfing. But I hate the lounge chairs! They need some new chairs to replace the blue ones by the beach entry areas. There are some better chairs closer to the main building. I recommend carrying them to where you want them. The pool chairs are heavenly.

The units that house the rooms for the most part are very close to the beach, so you have this constant beautiful sound of the ocean. The screened in porches are such a delight! The rooms are clean and maid service is friendly.

The food is good. The dinner menu is smaller than it used to be, I think most folks end up ordering a lot of sandwiches. Service is faster than in the past, though.

I sent some clothes to be cleaned and was missing an item. The staff handled it very well! They called the cleaners, who called me back, and we figured it all out. The cleaner delivered it that same day.

This is a resort for rest and relaxation. There is little going on, and I like it that way. For that reason it is best to rent a car. Fredericksted is close by and has a really good grocery store for those with a kitchenette. Drive to Christiansted and shop, they have some cute places to see. The day trip to Buck Island is always fun, great snorkeling there. Try to go on a calm day, as the Buck Island trip is out in a lot of open water. I had some great snorkeling there, saw turtles, octopus, lots of fish. However it was rough water that day, so I was really tired from fighting waves.

You won't be sorry to choose this place if you prefer r&r, and a little bit of shabby chic.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank JillMadamie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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