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Back from STJ and Orchid Court Tennis Cottage

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Back from STJ and Orchid Court Tennis Cottage

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(@sunuelen)
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We just got back from St. John and had the most wonderful time . Since I have used this site countless times I felt it was time to give back as well ,sharing our experiences and suggestions! I found this wonderful little cottage on the VRBO website .It was called Orchid Court Tennis Cottage. Owners Bill and Suzanne were just wonderul and so helpful. Bill met us at the ferry dock in Cruz Bay after an hour delay from our flight. He was very gracious and brought us right over to get our reserved vehicle. We used Denzil Clynes (340-776-6715) it's over on the right heading to Mongoose JunctionThey were pleasant and reasonably priced too.Once set we followed Bill up to the cottage which was up in the jungles of Catherineberg.We got up over a knoll and there thru the trees I could see the turqoise blue of the caribbean and our cottage rooftop...it had its own walled in terrace . I kept thinking "how lush and beautiful" . There was a wall fountain at the entry door to the terrace that was tricklng water and the sound was so Zen . We had truly found secret Paradise in this place. There is a tennis court that runs between the main villa and cottage but one feels a sense of real privacy despite We were going to play but just never found the time to do it! The terrace has high walls and they drip with lush beautiful foliage and plant life.When Bill opened the terrace door ..I thought I had died and gone to heaven...I actually gasped in delight. There directly in front of us...the most incredible views of the British Virgin Islands and Drakes Passage with the lush green mountains as its canvas in the forefront.. Two teak steamer chairs were there to take in the views. Then Bill brought us into the cottage to show us around. Again I was taken back at how beautiful and charmng this place was. Again from very large french doors that view of the BVI'S. The cottage is immaculate and done in the softest of blues...with whitecabinents and trim and creamy beige floors and counters.This place definitely had a Feng Shui feel too. She must have some interior design experience ...it was just incredible..Two rooms comprmise the cottage the kitchen and living room as one with a dining room table set for two and with an arrangement of ferns and flowers just freshly picked. Small cream colored couch with seafoam pillows. Those doors open wide to take in more view too. Then another room that was the queen sized bedroom also with lg french doors that open wide to the view. Lovely linens and coverlet in softest seafoam. A bathroom but a door that goes out to an outdoor gazebo trellised shower....nothing like being one with nature. There were portholes cut out to look out again to the view to the islands or to your back yard terrace.A large tree shading that area. A few steps down and a large hot tub again built into the lushness of the tropical landscape....every night before retiring we enjoyed star gazing from there. And mornings we would rise early to watch the morning light creep across to first Tortola and then Jost and the other hills and mountains around. This was were we had our coffee to catch the sight in those steamer chairs. And if we got back in time in the evening we would watch the sunlight move across again like it was pulling a a dark blanket across the islands. Just amazing and we woud enjoy a glass of wine in that same place and see the twinkling lights of Tortola come alive and the road that goes to White Bay Beach would light up at Jost Van Dyke.No nothing was wasted on us here in this magical romantic place. I would rate this place as one of the most romantic little cottages of the caribbean. The hummingbirds would come early in the morning taking the sweet nector from a coral plant that draped from the top of the wall and then would rest on a traveler palm with a Bird of Paradise bloom that was located within the palm. Gheckos scampered about the outside and almost appeared to greet us as we came and went. So many lovely plants, trees , bushes and flowers and ferns all about.
The location of the cottage was truly ideal as we were about 15 mins from town and the Northshore beaches. The cottage was so well outfitted we had coolers , beachchairs, towel etc for whatever activity. we snorkeled alot and swam and found Mahoe to be our favorite and Waterlemon (its a bit of a walk but well worth it) We saw all kinds of fish , sea turtles , stingray and even huge starfish lying motionless on the sandy bottom of Waterlemon . We visited Annaberg plantation while there and there was a local festivity going on with live band and local food and wares...the islanders so gracious and friendly. So many lovely beaches hard to choose but try and try them all if you can. Oh and if you plan on doing the Reef Trail guided hike make sure you make your reservation several weeks in advance if going in high season. The were booked up several days . But the park rangers give so much great info on the tour that it is well worth it ( I had done it a few years a go and loved it.) Hikers your going to love STJ so many hiking trails to do.
For grocery shopping The Starfish Market (Cruz Bay)is great and has lots of selection including a new wine and gourmet cheese shop. For a great little hole in the wall that locals use thats very reasonable priced is over in Coral Bay it is next to a gas station,,,It looks like a shop stuffed in a Connex box but the prices are great here and owner is friendly and helpful. Water by the case 5$
For eats: Joes BBQ (no sign) in Cruz Bay on the corner behind a Kiosk ....ask or follow your nose ...this is a great takeout place. They have Chicken/Ribs 2 sides for 12$ and two people can split it easiy....finger licking good too!
My favorite: Shipwreck Landing in Coral Bay.....get there before 4pm and you can still order from luncheon menu. They do incredible daily specials and it is really hard to pick one because they are all so fantastic. Watch the bannaquit's eat from a sugar bowel. This is a casual open air restuarant with a really great food.
Skinny Legs in Coral Bay ..this is a very laid back caual funky fun place with the best Burgers in Paradise....loved it !
For fancy romantic upscale$$$$ : ZOZO'S is the place ...make reservations and be there to time the Sunset up in the loft bar....it is here I try to catch the ever elusive "Green flash" that is when the Sunsets perfectly in the Sea and if condtions are just right you will observe an emerald flash of light as the Sun dissappears into the ocean. After you have seen that post card Sunset go down and have your dinner "on the rail" (make sure you request a rail seating as the views are the best ...do this when you make your reservation) then enjoy an incredible wonderful gourmet meal.....we had the Caribbean Lobster which melted in our mouths
If you need a taxi from St Thomas to or from or anywhere on St Thomas ....the most incredible guy is Bazile from Bazile's Taxi Service.(340-771-5759)...he is the most reliable , hardworking , trustworthy and entertaining person you'll ever meet and he is the most knowledgble about all the Virgin Islands and informative( he tell you all the do's and don't s ) I have used him for the past 7 yrs and he never ceases to amaze me!! They don't come better than he.......reliable always.Give him a hug for me and tell him Sue says hello.
Well hope it helps newbies or those that just didn't know...........Give St. John a hug for me!
Sue D ( Freezing in Ct

 
Posted : March 1, 2009 8:29 pm
(@vi-lover)
Posts: 519
Honorable Member
 

Thanks for taking the time to describe all of this! Glad you had a great time - excellent information in your report.

 
Posted : March 1, 2009 11:02 pm

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