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virgin islands on line : St. John : hotel & villa reviews

Sunnyledge 02/09/2008
Reviewers Rating: Excellent
On Francis Bay beach, look straight up. The house with the red roof, perched on the hillside, is Sunnyledge. When Sunnyledge was being built, I remember thinking it would be a great place to stay. It was. We recently spent the last week of a 3 week visit there, and it was a perfect choice, full of light and good energy.

First of all, the location is unbeatable. The views are wonderful—Catherineberg and St. Thomas to the west, Francis Bay and Sandy Cay and the outer islands in front of you, and Soper’s Hole to the far east. You can get to the beach and to hiking trails in minutes, and of course you also have access to Maho Bay. I enjoyed taking yoga classes in the Maho pavilion right across the road. A couple of nights, we bought dinner from Maho’s quite good kitchen and brought it back to the house to enjoy on nice plates with no noseeums. You can also rent kayaks and such from Maho. Maho’s closeness rarely affects the villa’s tranquility and privacy, and best of all, I felt very safe there, knowing so much was so close.

I’m not a fan of pods so loved that two of Sunnyledge’s 3 bedrooms were part of the main building. These two bedrooms are at either end of the house, offering plenty of privacy. All beds are king-sized and comfortable. (Only disappointment were the hard pillows.) The master bedroom has a wonderful shower. Part of it extends to a screened, walled, narrow garden full of tropical plants. When the rain comes down, it rains inside the garden. One cold night, I took a hot shower while it was absolutely bucketing down. Lovely and invigorating, with the smell of the earth. The other bedroom is down an outside staircase; we did not even go inside this room, but it looked just like the bedroom above it (which has its own balcony).

The house is comfortable and bright, with comfortable new furniture. It is also incredibly well-stocked. Pots, pans, first-aid items, towels, games, movies.

The house does not have a pool or hot tub. Though these are unimportant to us, I know some people rent based on whether a house has them. The good news is, the house is still somewhat of a work in process and there is room for these things, if the owners decide to add them.

Terry Witham was a wonderful person to deal with. We booked while were were already on-island in another villa, but our daughter was having some health issues so we were very wishy-washy about our dates. Terry not only worked with us, and allowed us to be flexible, she obviously really cared. Not only that, the owners called to check on our daughter the first night at the house. Very kind and warm people---their personality infuses this delightful house!

Maryanne O





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