|Minimum Stay||7 nights|
La Collina is located on a small plateau on Roman Hill, the hill that rises up behind the harbor at Great Cruz Bay. This is a quiet neighborhood of private villas. The views from LaCollina are picturesque and lovely, including the views of the harbor and distant islands floating on the Caribbean, the spectacular sunset views in the early evening, and the twinkling lights of other islands after dark. LaCollina faces south-southwest, which paints the pool, sun deck and villa deck with sun all day, but the local stone and concrete walls keep the house surprisingly cool despite that exquisite Caribbean sunshine. Although this is a tranquil and serene location it's also ultra convenient, being an easy 6-minute drive into Cruz Bay and about two minutes to the beach bar, spa, restaurants and facilities at the four star Westin Resort.
The design of LaCollina is a traditional 2 level layout that is spacious and comfortable. You park on the upper level and enter into the great room, which includes the living, dining and kitchen areas. The living room was refurnished in 2013 and the old kitchen was completely ripped out and replaced with an elegant and well equipped marble, tile and teak kitchen that represents an beautifully done remodel.
The two large master bedrooms (king beds) are located on both sides of the great room and are very private. The master bedroom baths were also completely remodeled in late 2014 and the new baths are clean, lovely and have a wonderful view, especially if you're showering around the time the sun sets. The 2 guest bedrooms (queen beds and also very private) are located on the lower level and are accessed by an exterior walkway. All 4 bedrooms are air conditioned and fully screened and all have tiled baths. The bedrooms, great room and dining room open to a 55 foot long deck that offers open areas for sunbathing and covered areas for those who have had too much sun. The pool is surrounded by a tiled sun deck and terraced palm gardens and is located on the on the left side of the house, upper level.
Handsome interior stone walls, tiled floors, arched doors, imposing cathedral ceilings and rattan furniture create a very classic and handsome tropical living area. A cable TV/DVD and stereo/CD are provided and the living room seats 8 comfortably.
The interior cherry dining set seats 10 with a fabulous view and a table under the covered deck also seats 8, also with a spellbinding view.
The completely remodeled (2014) kitchen is separated from the living area by a bar area with 3 captain's chairs and contains all the necessary ingredients for preparing great meals, including a gas stove, refrigerator, microwave, dishwasher, toaster oven and abundant cooking and dining implements. A washer/dryer, gas barbecue, beach chairs and beach towels and all linens are also provided.
We bought our beautiful La Collina villa in 1999, not long after our first vacation visit to St. John. We had been spending winter vacations in the Caribbean for about twenty years, but we’ve never bothered to visit another Caribbean island since having that first St. John experience. A small island with no airport and only a couple of large resorts, we share it mainly with other families who rent or own a villa. True, some visitors come over for the day from St. Thomas, a 20 minute ferry ride, and they spend their time mainly at Trunk Bay, famous for its underwater snorkel trail. St. John has an amazing variety of beaches: some great for snorkeling, some great for body surfing, some great for trails leading in to tropical forests or over rocky cliffs, and some great simply for sunning with a book. Downtown St. John is Cruz Bay, a port with the ferry dock, sleepy and quaint like a 1940s Bogart movie during the day, and lively at night with music and laughter coming from the many excellent restaurants. Oh, did we tell you that three quarters of the island is a US National Park?
Also, in case you missed this, in 2014 we made some really major improvements in LaCollina that we feel make a huge difference in it's overall livability, including a totally new kitchen and entirely new bathrooms for the two master baths. We also ripped out the old tile in the great room and replaced it with a handsome new marble floor.
Owner/Property Manager purchased this villa in 1999
La Collina (Italian for hill) sits on top of Roman Hill, set away from the dirt road that circles the top of the hill. While only a minute from Route 104, and thus a quick five minutes to the main shopping area (Starfish at Marketplace), no road noise can be heard from La Collina. The villa is high above Great Cruz Bay (not to be confused with downtown Cruz Bay), and the view is spectacular. The villa looks west from the deck, so there are beautiful sunsets (and rainbows when light morning or afternoon showers briefly pass by), and night scenes with the sparkling lights of nearby St. Thomas. The villa was built by a local who appreciated the traditional Caribbean style: thick walls to make it cool inside even with the A/C off, beautiful gray stone work on the living room walls, monster wooden hurricane doors, whitewashed outside to reflect the heat, and a red tile roof. A huge deck stretches the length of the villa, and what a deck! Always with a cool breeze, one half is covered, and we eat all meals there. The two ends of the deck are uncovered, good for sunning, and right off the two master bedrooms.
La Collina is on a big lot loaded with flowers, papaya trees, and a crushed stone path leading through them, along which one can see hummingbirds. Two kestrels (native to these islands) roost in our trees at night. There are two bedrooms on the lower level, good for privacy.
We think you will love La Collina and St. John. Our family does, and they weep when it’s time to leave.
This rental property is an older home with beautifully updated bathrooms and kitchen, and very close to all the popular restraunts in Cruz Bay.
The home is unique with its stone walls, and generous sized balcony porch with loads of room to gaze out over Great Cruz Bay. The lower level two bedrooms could use some paint and are essentially cut off from the main house amenities requiring outdoor steps to get to main house. But older teens would love the privacy. The upper lever master bedrooms are generous sized, with gorgeous views.
It's important to note this is not a neighborhood you can go out and take a safe morning walk. Although traffic was rare, roads are very narrow and only room for one way traffic. We were all lunged at by a imposing black dog on a chain we aptly named Cudjoe, a few doors from the entrance to the community. Another, unleashed (friendlier) pit bull mix followed our friends one morning.
Although the master bedrooms are air conditioned, the main living area/dining room was quite warm a few nights, and bugs got in through slits in the screen doors, which need replacing.
Also important, the pool is smaller than it appears in pictures. It was a refreshing dip after a day at the beach though, and none of us were up for swimming laps, ha! Each morning, we spent some time cleaning all the leaves and plant debris as it would become dirty. A minor annoyance, I know but still something you don't want to be doing on vacation! There is a pretty, narrow view of the bay but is quite limited by the position of pool and surrounding vegetation.
If you love animals, La Colina has a menagerie: a chicken with her 5 little chicks came by for daily visits, several Iguanas came poolside to make an appearance, and every morning deer were spotted grazing below the balcony.
Be aware, even though we called well ahead as instructed, we had to wait 15-20 minutes to be picked up by Carribean Villas staff both arriving and leaving. Not fun when you are standing with your luggage, travel-weary and some strange, drunk man kept harassing us and asking us where we were staying, or when the ferry is leaving in 15 minutes.
Other than the few aforementioned minor issues, we all loved the home and location.
This property had all the charm you would expect from a casual island home. We were looking for something authentic and not over the top luxury. The rock interior walls to the wood shutters and doors added to the island experience. The property was older but clean and very well maintained and had everything we needed. The grounds surrounding the property were pristine and we loved the wildlife (deer (3), bunnies, the iguana and an occasional lizard). Fully equipped kitchen, linins and all our essential beach needs (chairs, coolers, etc.). What we liked most of all was the view from the 2nd floor deck. When not at the pool, around and about or at the beach we spent all our time on the upper deck. Great view of Great Cruz Bay, St. Thomas and beyond. The pictures of this property are as shown and were exactly what we expected. The only thing I would change is to cut back the foliage around the pool. It was quite over grown and a clear shot of Great Cruz bay from the pool would have been ideal. This is a perfect property for 2 couples - great floor plan. Rooms about the same size with private baths, ocean views and deck access, A/C worked great! This was our 5th trip to St. John and we are already planning for next year!
I'm not sure what the actual translation is for La Collina, but as far as I'm concerned, it's Shangri-la.
The house is perfect for our large group as everybody has their own space (and bathroom) when needed, but there are beautiful large communal spaces both indoors and out for sharing meals and revelry. We start and end everyday on the huge, well-furnished deck .
The beds are comfortable with high-quality, crisp, cotton sheets and towels.
We cook large meals of many courses while we are there and have everything we need to prepare, serve and enjoy these meals (from abundant pots and pans to a breathtaking ocean view).
I look forward to my third year in a row; waking to birdsong, tropical floral aromas and gentle ocean breezes.
I wouldn't consider staying anywhere else on St John!
Spectacular western views of Great Cruz Bay and incredible sunsets.
Close to downtown Cruz Bay.
Lush vegetation around the in ground pool.
Spacious covered veranda.
Well stocked kitchen and entire house.
2 large upstairs bedrooms with private baths.
New Weber gas grill.
Privacy on the veranda.
We have vacationed at LaCollina four years in a row and look forward to going back again! From the moment you step inside the front door, you're on island time. LaCollina is comfortable, unpretentious and we immediately feel at home. The kitchen has everything you need which makes staying in and grilling a great dinner option. The location of LaCollina is fantastic - convenient to both the largest food market on the island and to a new, smaller market; an easy, short ride into town; yet still only 15 minutes to a string of beautiful beaches. After a day at the beach, we drive back through town and stop at our choice of several great beach bars, only to race back to LaCollina to enjoy a cocktail at the pool and the spectacular sunset. The porch cannot be beat any time of day whether it be sipping your morning coffee or watching for cruise ships, rainbows or the lights of St Thomas twinkle every night!
|Rate Period||Nightly||Weekend Night||Weekly||Monthly||Event|
In Season (2 person rate)
Jan 7 2017 - Apr 14 2017
7 night minimum stay
|Notes: Rates are based on 2 guests; add $60 per night, per additional guest|
Off Season (2 person)
Apr 15 2017 - Dec 15 2017
7 night minimum stay
|Notes: Rates are based on 2 guests; add $50 per night, per additional guest|
WEEKLY RENTAL RATES BASED ON # OF PEOPLE PER SEASON:
IN SEASON: Dec 17, 2016 - April 14, 2017
$3500/wk for 2 persons, $3850/wk for 3-4, $4270/wk for 5-6, $4550/wk for 7-8
CHRISTMAS/NEW YEARS: $5460/wk for 2-8 guests
OFF SEASON: April 9, 2016 - Dec 16, 2016
$2160/wk for 2 persons, $2510/wk for 3-4, $2720/wk for 5-6, $3000/wk for 7-8
THANKSGIVING: Off Season rates apply
$500 Damage Deposit
50% is due within 7 days of booking, final payment is due 60 days prior to arrival. For Christmas/New Years bookings- final payment is due 120 days prior to arrival.