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Steve Simonsen 2017 St. John CalendarSteve Simonsen 2017 St. John Calendar
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virgin islands on line : St. John : hotel & villa reviews

Bongo Bongo 02/10/2008
Reviewers Rating: Great
We stayed at Bongo Bongo for a week during January. This villa sits on the cusp of a four-star rating but for one flaw - lack of screens in the great room. More on that in a minute.

This was our second year at Bongo Bongo, which consists of two bedrooms, both with "real" King-sized beds (not two twins pushed together) and AC in both bedrooms. The bedrooms are each self-contained; one cannot access them from the great room. The great room consists of a living room area, kitchen, laundry area and powder room. More than 3 people dining? You'll want to use the large, lovely, outdoor circular table under the covered patio.

Pros: Weber grill in excellent condition and a lighter that still actually works. AC in both bedrooms. "Real" king-sized beds with ridiculously amazing bed linens and soft, soft, soft pillows. Option for outdoor and indoor showers. Powder room in the great room area means you don't have to go outside to a bedroom when nature calls. Digital cable and a sweet Bose indoor/outdoor sound system. Fridge has a filtered water system. Pool gets full afternoon sun. Unique colors on wall - not your same old pastel Caribbean colors. Location near Westin Hotel a plus for late-night snack runs. Three magic electric "tennis" racquets for killing unwanted bugs.

Cons: Bongo Bongo denied that coveted fourth star because it lacks screens in the great room. In essence, house guest have two choices: a) open all the doors and let every single bug (large, small, green and otherwise) on St. John into the house or b) keep the doors closed and bake in sauna-like conditions as the afternoon sun beats on the glass and heats the room up to very uncomfortable temperatures. Other concerns are minor at best. Kitchen lacks a liquid measuring cup (comes in handy for making specialty drinks). Shutter on one bedroom is warped so sunlight comes through in the mornings. Open shower in one bedroom is too small and the water sprays on the bathroom floor, creating little puddles. Lack of a nighttable on both sides of the bed. Bathroom lighting is poor for decent makeup application.

Overall, this is a lovely house. A great deal of care, planning and effort went into it and the owners clearly maintain the house well. If you plan to spend afternoons at the beach and not in the home's great room, then this might be the perfect house for you.

Marie Manning





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