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virgin islands on line : st. john : hotel & villa reviews

Anole 12/18/2005
Reviewers Rating: Stars Excellent
We stayed at Anole for one week from 12/10 to 12/17. It was just my husband and I. My review will be pretty detailed, but if you have any questions feel free to email me direct.

Location: The villa is on the North Shore overlooking Cinnamon Bay. There is a lot of tree growth, so you don't see direct down to the beaches, but you can see Francis Beach and Harbor. The villa is accessed off of Centerline Road. It's about a 2 mile drive at the most. The road is partly concrete, partly dirt, but in pretty good shape. We rented a jeep wrangler and after the first couple of trips in and out we no longer used 4wd. The villa is very private although our first night there we heard the people over at Cinnamon Bay Estate. Noise carries and it was their last night, so they were partying pretty hard. After that the villa was empty the rest of the week, so we had total quiet. There is a villa under construction next door, but the noise was minimal and only during the day.

The villa has a nice sized living room, dining area and kitchen. The 4 bedrooms are the same size with either kings, or twins made up to kings. The upstairs bedrooms are nicer, they have a view and bigger bathrooms and showers. But this villa would be very comfortable with 4 couples, there is plenty of room. The screened in porches are one of the best things about the villa. On the few nights we had bugs we would sit inside. The furniture is VERY comfortable rocking chairs. I spent alot of late nights on the screened porch reading. That was a treat.

The bed was comfortable and the linens were fine. While we were there all new linens and comforters were delivered, but the others were just a bit dated, but fine. There are nice walk in closets with plenty of hangers and storage for clothes. There are wood shutters that roll down (electrically) between the bedroom and the screen porch. With just the two of us we didn't feel the need for privacy, but for an afternoon nap it did darken an otherwise bright room.

There was plenty of hot water and decent water pressure in the shower. The villa was very clean and tidy upon our arrival.

I wouldn't think this would be a good villa for toddlers or small children. It is ALL tile floor, including the upstairs deck and steps. It is hard, not to mention wet and damp after a rain and dew from the night air. We almost slipped several times, I would be concerned with kids. Also the pool is about 6' deep except at the stairs.

As soon as you park your jeep you will see the pool and the view, WOW, the view! When you walk in the front door you look straight out to the deck and that beautiful view, WOW, the view! We literally sat for hours just watching the boats in and out of Cinnamon Bay, the narrows, and around Whistling Cay. We watched the boat activity at White Bay and Great Harbor, the view to Jost Van Dyke is superb. Bring binoculars and a camera with a zoom lens. Wonderful pictures, which I will post with my trip report.

The kitchen was well stocked with everything we needed. All the appliances are in top condition, and all the necessary small tools and utensils were there. We used the washer and dryer several times and they were great. We ate most of our dinners at the villa, we cooked on the grill (a nice Weber).

The pool was nice, but the water was pretty cold. We think that the heat pump wasn't working very well, I have written the management company about it. We spent very little time in the pool, mainly because we were at beaches all day, and because it was so cold. We've decided that a hot tub would work better for us, especially in the winter months. The evenings were cool, we are up on a mountain and in the woods. We both brought sweat pants which we enjoyed on those cool evenings!

The foilage around the villa is very lush and green. One of the banana trees had a load of bananas just about ripe. Most of the foilage is all green, because of the Northshore location, but some very pretty hibiscus, and a few others.

The weather was great while we were there, low 80's and mid 70's at night. There was an almost constant breeze up there, even when the water was very calm. The little bit of rain we did have made for some lazy relaxing hours! Nothing like the pitter patter of rain falling on big banana leafs!

There are two resident cats, or at least that's what they told us, at Anole. The girl with white fur and tan/black markings we named Snowflake, and her friend, a solid black male named Sam were very sweet cats. Snowflake was always in our lap while we were on deck. Sam meowed at us constantly and was very friendly although a little skiddish. Yes we fed them, but we were rewarded when Snowflake brought us a rat and lay it by the patio door (if you don't know cats, that is there way of saying thank you). After that no more rats, just two entertaining cats. It made for interesting afternoons while trying to feed the bananaquits, the cats thought they were lunch. And there truly was a brown bird that sat in the tree outside one of the screened porches. When I would take some cookie crumbs and leave them on the rail he would fly over eat them, then come back to the tree and sing for me!

There were NO creepy crawly things, or rodents (except the one rat) anywhere throughout the villa. We left the lights on the outside at night (per the owners request) and we noticed the little lizards feeding off the insects.

The best things about this villa are the view, the view, and the view! The screened in porches were just SO comfortable to us, we really enjoyed them. There are plenty of towels, beach chairs, coolers, floats, etc. Plenty of storage space (who needs much on STJ though?), lounging areas, and in general room to spread out if you're with a large group. There is only one small tv in the living room, and one cd/tape player. We don't watch tv on vacation, but we'd check the weather once in a while.

The only downside to us was the lack of air conditioning. Not because it was hot, it was not. But I have asthma and at night it got VERY humid and damp. It bothered my breathing a bit, but not too bad. We would stay at Anole again, but not in the summer, even with its Northshore location.

Don't hestitate to contact me if you have any questions!



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