Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Splash: St. John, USVI

Cozy living room with views of Great Cruz Bay

If you ever want to spend some time on St. John in a really cool villa, try Splash. My sister and her family stayed there while visiting, and enjoyed it thoroughly. First, it’s right on the water at Great Cruz Bay, so we were able to dinghy right in from Mr Mac, so convenient! Some highlights of the house are: Nooks and crannies abound—the rooms are tucked around a central open area at all angles, which makes for an incredibly cozy, yet still open, experience. Plenty of room for relaxing—in the great room, or on the sunny patio with cushy chairs right under the delicious-smelling honeysuckle, or down a couple of steps to the little tiki bar, or sitting on the wall overlooking the bay, or napping in the shady hammock. Four different dining venues—at the huge wooden bar around the kitchen, the long wooden table on the screened porch, the large umbrella-shaded table tucked behind the foliage, or the small umbrella-shaded table overlooking the water. An indoor pool—with native-stone walls, a foliage-filled planter on one side, open to the sky above (with screens to keep out the flying riff-raff), a shallow side bench for sitting and deep water (no touching here!) for floating, all smack dab in the middle of the house. Resident iguanas—named Bartholomew, Johnny, Rodriguez, and Bob by my nephew and nieces—that sat on the wall every morning waiting for their pieces of strawberries or bananas. The absolute best bedroom ever—called the Crow’s Nest, up an outdoor spiral staircase, no AC needed because the sides were open with no windows, only screens (draped in foliage for privacy) to let the breeze blow through. We slept in the Crow’s Nest a couple of nights, and during one pre-dawn downpour, were christened by a few raindrops that made it as far as the bed. And, of course, besides the house, you’ve got all the delights of St. John—beautiful beaches, great snorkeling, fantastic hikes, and interesting ruins—a short yet steep drive away (unfortunately, you do have to rent a car to see the sites beyond the local neighborhood, or endure the high taxi prices, as there’s no public transportation here). The house easily sleeps eight, so get together a group of friends and splurge. If you’re feeling particularly flush, Splash is for sale for $2+ million dollars.

Screened eating porch

Absolutely cool indoor pool - not large, but delightful

No windows in the Crow's Nest bedroom, only screens. I loved it!

Great stonework detail in the master bedroom

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