- 6 bedrooms
- 9 bathrooms
- Sleeps 16
Description from the owner
Great Expectations can accommodate as many as 15 adults plus children in 4 equal Master bedrooms and 2 spacious bedroom Suites plus 2 additional rooms which can also be used as bedrooms for larger groups (we charge only for the bedrooms used). Great Expectations has spectacular views over the Caribbean (both the sunrise and sunset) and is within walking distance to 2 beaches. Wedding specials and discounts for grandparents and multiple couples. Rated the #1 St. John vacation rental villa by travelers on Trip Advisor!
With 3 swimming/wading pools, 2 hot tubs, and even a private basketball/tennis court, Great Expectations is ideal for... special celebrations and family gatherings. The Villa is also perfect for multiple couples vacationing together offering 4 equal Master bedrooms with private patios overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Each Master bedroom has a large bathroom with indoor/outdoor shower, walk-in closet with wall safe, soaring cathedral ceiling with skylight and transoms, and custom-made teak furniture from Bali with extra long King-size beds or 2 Twins. Each Master bedroom can also comfortably accommodate a foldaway bed or portacrib for children. All 4 Master bedrooms are on the same level along with -- to provide privacy for those staying up late or rising early -- a separate Great Room with a large living room, gourmet kitchen, and indoor and outdoor dining areas around the pool and hot tub patios and outdoor barbecue.
A nearby two-story Guest House offers 2 spacious bedroom Suites each about twice the size of one of the 4 Master bedrooms. Each Suite has a Queen-size bed and futons for additional sleeping accommodations if needed as well as a private bathroom with indoor/outdoor shower. Upstairs in the Guest House is the Owners Suite with its own kitchen, dining and living areas and spectacular views overlooking the Caribbean Sea. The Guest Suite on the first floor of the Guest House has an adjacent sitting area, The Sun Room, with yet another private bathroom, this one with a coral shower. The Sun Room can also be used as a separate, 7th bedroom with Twin beds or a King for larger groups or parents who would like their children in a connecting bedroom.
The Club Room has a trundle bed (2 Twins) with its own private bathroom and can be used as a separate bedroom for one adult or a couple of teenagers bringing the total number of bedrooms at Great Expectations to 8 (all air-conditioned with private bathrooms) providing comfortable sleeping accommodations for as many as 15 adults plus kids. We charge only for the number of bedrooms used assuming double occupancy; we have had as few as one couple rent the entire villa and as many as 21 people (there were a lot of kids!).
Great Expectations is located in the southwest part of St. John about a 5 minute drive from Cruz Bay with stores where you can purchase any food or beverages you need as well as excellent restaurants. The Villa is uniquely sited about 100 feet above the Caribbean Sea and offers both sunrise and sunset views.
There are two beaches within a 5 minute walk of the Villa. To the east, accessible only by foot, so there is usually no one there, is Hart Bay beach (the westernmost part of Rendezvous Bay). The coral reef comes right up to the shore here so Hart Bay beach is a wonderful beach-combing spot, not to be missed, replete with amazing pieces of coral which have washed up on the shore. To the west of the Villa is the beach at Chocolate Hole harbor with crystal clear water and some of the best snorkeling on the island thanks to the only salt pond on St. John connected to the ocean attracting lots of interesting fish and sea turtles which feed on the small crustaceans from the salt pond. The US National Park beaches and hiking trails which people come from all over the world to experience are only a 10-15 minute drive along paved roads.Read more
Great Expectations, rated the #1 villa on St. John
Saint John, U.S. Virgin Islands, Caribbean
Additional Location Information
walking distance to 2 beaches, 15 minute drive to US National Park, sited 100 feet above the Caribbean Sea with dual views to the east and the west offering both the sunrise and sunset!
More About This Location
Beach or lakeside relaxation, Warm winter getaways
Water sports nearby, Tennis courts nearby
Nearest ferry port: Cruz Bay, 2 miles
Nearest train station: Miami, 1000 miles
Nearest airport: St. Thomas, 10 miles
Car is essential
Last updated on July 24, 2014
Not available for your dates? Check availability for 547 other Saint John rentalsCheck Availability for Saint John
Rates shown in $ USD
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- Damage deposit | $500
- Tax rate | 10% of rent
- Fees for additional guests may apply.
Additional notes from the owner
SPRING, SUMMER, FALL RATES
April 13, 2014 - December 20, 2014
1-2 persons....$3250 per week
3 -4 persons....$4250 per week
5 -6 persons....$5250 per week
7 - 8 persons....$6250 per week
9 - 10 persons....$7250 per week
11 - 12 persons....$8250 per week
13 - 14 persons....$9250 per week
15 - 16 persons....$10250 per week
WINTER SEASON RATES
January 3, 2015 - April 11, 2015
1-2 persons....$6750 per week
3-4 persons....$7750 per week
5-6 persons....$8750 per week
7-8 persons....$9750 per week
9-10 persons....$10750 per week
11-12 persons...$11750 per week
13-14 persons....$12750 per week
15 - 16 persons....$13750 per week
Our rates are based on the number of bedrooms (assuming double occupancy) you use whether your party is 2 people or 16 (no charge for children staying in the same room with their parents). We have a total of 8 bedrooms: 5 in the Main Vila (4 Master bedrooms and The Club Room) and 3 in the Guest House. The Main Villa is rented to only one group at a time (you will be the only guests no matter the size of your party). The Villa facilities are for the exclusive use of only guests residing at the Villa without the express permission of the owners.
Rates do not include 10% US Virgin Islands Tax and $500 Refundable Security Deposit. Prices subject to change prior to deposit of 50% of room rate due at time of booking (the balance plus government tax and security deposit not due until 30 days prior to arrival). Personal or bank checks gladly accepted, credit card payment may be arranged through Paypal. All payments are fully refundable upon re-renting at any time and for any reason (we want happy guests!)
- Alarm Clock
- Washing Machine
- Linens Provided
- High chair
- A/C or climate control
- Ceiling Fans
- Clothes Dryer
- Soap/Shampoo Provided
- Towels Provided
- Housekeeping Optional
- Hair dryer
- Local Guides/Maps
- Fitness Room
Phone / Internet
- Internet Access
Pool / Spa
- Children's pool
- Hot Tub/Jacuzzi
- Private outdoor pool (unheated)
- Mountain Views
- Tennis court (private)
- Ocean or water views
- Paper Towels Provided
- Stove or Oven
- Stereo or CD player
- DVD Player
- Satellite or cable TV
- Outdoor Dining Area
- Balcony or terrace
- 16 Dining chairs
- 16 Lounge chairs
- Pet friendly - yes
- Smoking allowed - no
- Suitable for children - yes
- Suitable for the elderly - yes
- Wheelchair accessible - no
- 4650 square feet
What Past Guests Are Saying
Have you stayed here? Write a review
100 guest reviews
100% of guests would stay again
Great expectations helped us have the perfect vacation.
We traveled here for spring break - 8 kids and 8 adults. The house was perfect. The views, the pools and the layout made an ideal getaway for our families. Hoping to return soon.
I spent time at Great Expectations for one month, each, in 2010 and 2011 with family and friends.
We had an amazing time. Its really a beautiful property, and its true, everything you need, they supply.
in 2013 we tried a new place on a different island. What a mistake. the place did not live up to its on line review or pics.
This year we went back to G E and were even more pleased (which none of us thought was possible)!
The new pool is amazing. Infinity in style, large, with amazing views.
Can't wait for next year!
We loved Great Expectations so much we returned to it again this year. It is perfect for a group because you have the kitchen/den area, but you can get away because your bedroom is private with your own private bathroom. They have everything you will need in the kitchen. The ice makers are very handy. There is free wireless internet too. The view is breathtaking, but you are still just a short drive to beaches and night life. We will return for our third trip soon!
Outstanding villa rental in St. John with a house that provides
Great Expectations is beautifully sited, fully equipped property that provides everything a three generation family needs. From cribs, toys and videos for kids to a wading pool, adult pool and nearby wonderful beaches, everything was planned to make our stay seamless. Restaurants are close, and catering companies made dinners at home most enjoyable. With a toddler in tow, this was especially convenient. Everything about this house is comfortable, easy and well planned.
Grand Blanc, MI
The views are even better than they look online!
This house is fantastic. The views are amazing. We had six couples travel for some warm sun and the house couldn't have been more accommodating. It has the views, the pools, and enough room to get away if need be.
They have thought of everything. We cooked a few meals and every utensil is there. We went to the beach and they had chairs and coolers for us to take. When we stayed around the pool there were chairs and floating rafts to use. The new pool is great and large enough for everyone to enjoy. The tennis court and basketball hoop are there if you want to get some exercise. They do have air conditioners in each room but we never used them. The breeze is perfect and will keep you cool each night.
The location is perfect. It takes about ten minutes to get to Cruz Bay. If you need a grocery item it only takes a few minutes to go and get back. Trunk Bay was about 25 minutes or so. The elevation of the house is just about right. You have views of the sun set and sun rise.
Check in was easy and Coby was always near when we needed something. The island lost power on Super Bowl Sunday and Coby showed up and started up the generator. We didn't even think about checking to see if there was a generator before we rented.
Each room is a little different. Some have more stairs or better views. At the end of the trip all six couples said they would be happy with the same room if we returned next year.
Great Expectations has the perfect set up for multiple couples or large families.
Great Expectations Exceeds
Our third visit to Great Expectations and it gets better every time.
The new pool is a perfect addition. Everything you need for a great vacation is provided. The location gives you sunrise to sunset views over two beautiful bays. A perfect place to vacation with your family or friends.
Our third visit!
This was our third stay. For us, that says it all! Great Expectations is the perfect vacation spot! The owners think of everything. We just came home 4 days ago and are already thinking about going again.
Completely pampered and completely comfy
Great Expectations has everything we have wanted in a vacation. Wonderful accommodations, perfect views and location, comfortable surroundings, attentive and responsive property manager, and terrific owners! Chuck and Kristin strive to meet the needs of all their guests, and succeed. Our large and diverse group of friends and we have stayed at Great Expectations for several years now (after staying at several other villas in different neighborhoods) and can't imagine staying anywhere else.
Hudson Valley Girl
Croton on Hudson
Love staying at Great Expectations! It is beautiful,clean, well stocked w/ all mod cons and comforts, and perfectly maintained. A stay at GE has become an annual event. We'll be back next year.
Thanks to Chuck & Kristen (and Coby, Patty, and Marie)!
Even Better Second Time around
We returned to Great Expectations and St John for an eight day stay with friends and family. Once again we were not disappointed. The owners, Kristin and Chuck, just keep making improvements. The new infinity pool and patio are a wonderful addition and the new "bar" in the Great Room added more counter space to the already spacious kitchen. And, as we left, the tennis court/basketball court was being renewed and resurfaced.
Once again we enjoyed this unique property with all its amenities, it is so comfortable for a large party of people, providing both comfortable public spaces and spacious private suites, all with expansive views, sunrises, sunsets and double rainbows galore. The gourmet kitchen with all the needed appliances to cook a feast and space for lots of folks to dine is much appreciated.
Highlights include the outdoor showers in each suite, the new patio by the hot tub for views and watching the sunsets, cooling breezes and lush landscaping. It is so quiet here and at night that you can hear the ocean waves from Harts Bay and a chorus of tree frogs will lull you to sleep.
Great Expectations is very well maintained and thoughtfully appointed. It is obvious that the owners, property manger and housekeeping crew care very much about the comfort of their guests.
We do not hesitate to recommend a stay here and we look forward to returning.
Nicest Rental Property I've Ever Seen
Superbly located. Superbly maintained. Superbly furnished. Kristin and Chuck go out of their way to make sure everything is just right. You can't possibly go wrong renting this place. We are repeat guests and will no doubt return again.
our favorite spot in the Caribbean!
We have been to St. John many, many times, and we never want to stay anywhere except Great Expectations. The property is set up on a hill, so it gets lovely cross breezes and gorgeous water views from all sides (sunrises and sunsets!). We are usually here with groups of friends and family, which is exactly what Great Expectations is made for. The separate bedrooms are all equally comfortable and private, but there's plenty of shared living space, both indoor and outdoor, to enjoy being together, as well as to spread out, if you prefer. The kitchen is clean and well-equipped, making it easy to make meals for large groups. The new infinity pool and patio are a delightful place to swim and take in the views--especially nice with a cocktail! Chuck and Kristin do everything they can to make Great Expectations feel like our home in St John. We will be back again and again!
Transformative and relaxing
We stayed a week in December with 4 couples. It was great. The house had waterviews from both front and back. I could see the water from the bed. The beds were very comfortable. There was a nice breeze at night so we did not need air conditioning.Everyone had privacy but we could all come together by the pool, hot tub or great room. The tennis court was being resurfaced that week which we knew. Everyday I swam in the pool for 40 minutes looking down at the ocean and mountains- such a great view.We went out to dinner and lunch, some went snorkeling. We cooked some wonderful dinners.I read 3 books- perfect.The outdoor showers were refreshing. We felt absolutely comfortable. It was totally relaxing as well as helped me to restart my exercise program. The villa is beautiful. St. John is my favorite island.
Third time staying on STJ and second time at Great Expectations. Spent 10 days here to celebrate my 50th birthday with my wife and three other couples. With all the praises and pictures that we shared with our friends prior to going, they all had their own Great Expectations. After our stay, it is safe to say all of their expectations were wildly exceeded. What a perfect place for groups to stay. The layout is great in that everyone has their own private bedroom, but still close to the great room/kitchen and pool area. Awesome views to both Chocolate Hole and Hart Bay. New pool and patio were a great addition. Nothing better than a morning outdoor shower watching the sunrise over Hart Bay, or relaxing on the patio watching the sun set over St. Thomas. Chuck and Kristin make it so easy to arrange the rental and always respond promptly to any and all questions. Once on the island, Coby the property manager will escort you to the villa and then will always be a phone call away if you need him. No request is too small or too big for him to help. St. John is definitely my favorite destination to get away and forget about the real world, and Great Expectations is the only place I would consider to stay. The view from the patio is forever etched in my memory and every day I think about about returning to see it again in person. Won't be soon enough.
Perfect villa in beautiful St. John
Absolutely gorgeous villa in picturesque Chocolate Hole, St. John. The location is very convenient; just a short drive to town for great restaurants, bars, beaches. Amazing view from no matter where you are standing or sitting! We rented out the entire property for our stay as we were traveling with extended family. The floor plan is perfect for a trip of this type as there are several separate buildings...ideal if you are traveling with other couples or family members.
Villa is very well appointed with absolutely everything you could possibly want or need. You can choose to cook meals here (great kitchen that is fully stocked with cookware, blender, etc) or grill outside. Tv and internet provided if you would like to keep up with your favorite shows or browse the internet. Washer/dryer on site which came in very handy. We loved the pools and had a wonderful time swimming with family every evening while enjoying the stars and gorgeous view. The hot tubs were very popular with our family, as well!
We had our wedding reception here and our guests (several of whom belong to very nice timeshares) raved about the property; it's that beautiful. Our reception was outside by the amazing pools. We danced on the deck near the pools and it worked out perfectly.
Kristin and Chuck are wonderful people and made the stress of planning a destination wedding/family trip as carefree as possible. They provided lots of tips on where to shop for food/alcohol, which rental car company and taxi service to use, etc. They were always very prompt with responses and happy to help in any way. The property manager, Coby, was amazing, as well. He took care of our every need while we were there, gave us great restaurant and parking recommendations and made sure he was at the property the day of our wedding to let the caterers in.
In short, Great Expectations is a perfect villa and we couldn't have chosen a better property. We are already planning to return!
Only the coconuts were missing ...
What a great vacation. 13 of us here for a big birthday. Everyone loved the location starting with the views and it was great to be able to put my in-laws in their own place ;-). My only complaint is that I couldn't find any place to get coconuts while I was on the Island. Hard to fault Great Expectations for that.
Before getting to the house I was concerned about not being on the beach but in the end it was perfect. Far enough from town so it was nice and quiet. Close enough so that a run to the store or to a restaurant was less than 10 minutes. You don't really want to hang out on a single beach -- they are all so lovely -- so this ended up working out real well. When we weren't at the beach we hung out in the pool or played tennis. Given the views and convenience, I couldn't imagine a better location on the island.
The information provided by the owners and Coby, the property manager, was impeccable. Any time we had a question Coby was more than happy to oblige. Chuck and Kristen work hard to make this a one-stop shopping experience.
As a side note, we ended up renting paddle boards one day from arawak (www.arawakexp.com). They also have kayaks and provide a soft roof rack (not good for a soft top jeep but otherwise great). Definitely recommend it for other families. The kids had a blast ands its a great way to explore some of the harder to reach beaches. Cinnamon Bay was closed for equipment rentals (since it wasn't high season) but you are bound to the location. If we come back I'll probably rent for the week.
crazy mother of 8
Perfect house in paradise!
This was our second time staying at Great Expectations on St John Usvi. We love the house, love the view and now we love the new pool!! We ended up staying at the house for a lot of our time as my children didn't want to get out of the pool! Lol!
Anything we needed was quickly taken care of by Coby.
Great Expectations is definitely the place to make beautiful family memories!!
personal pampered paradise
we met relatives from all over the states at great expectations for a
reunion for a week! they were so thrilled with the accomodations, the
only complaint i heard was "not close enough to my front door"
the staff were invisible until you neede something, then the response
was fast and cheerful!
thanks to the villa our vaca was the best ever
San Juan, Puerto Rico
A piece of heaven in the Caribbean !!!
We just got back from our yearly family reunion. Stayed at Great
Expectations and it really surpassed our expectations by far.
We were 19 persons and everyone had its space. The rooms were
comfortable, clean and private. The kitchen had everything you needed. The barbecue was also very well equipped. My grandchildren really enjoyed the pools, the tennis court, , the hammocks so strategically well placed. The location is perfect, the views were spectacular...we really had a great time and really
are looking forward to return.
van Beveren Fam
This was our families 8th stay at Great Expections, each time we bring a new family with us to experience the incredible island of St. John and the awesome villa. The addition of the infinity pool, upgraded SubZero fridge and Coby (the property manager) made this stay one of our favorites. We are already trying to set up our return!
Our group of 14 (4 families including 6 kids ages 6 - 11 years old) loved Great Expectations! Great location - close to town and amazing views all around. The layout was perfect - each family had plenty of room. The new pool was the highlight for the kids and the adults loved the patios and beautiful views. We really appreciated having 3 sets of washer and dryers and the Great Room was well-equipped. Coby and the staff were very friendly and helpful. Truly a wonderful house that I hope to return to!
Wonderful return trip to the Islands
This was another great trip to St John and Great Expectations. The accomodations and service were excellent as always. Coby and his staff were terrific, picking us up at the ferry, handling our requests and providing expert knowledge of the island. The addition of the new pool was unbelievable. We spent most of the time there with our drinks. The group this time was made up of 2 families (4 adults, 7 teenagers). This "mini" resort proved perfect for our group. The boys had the upstairs guest house while the rest of us enjoyed the main villas. We all enjoyed the great room for meals and games. The kids enjoyed playing tennis everyday. This property is one of a kind.
Family of 18
Kansas City, Missouri
Attention to detail!
We have been renting luxury beach rentals for our large group of 18 for over 10 years. This home was the best by far!! The owners have this magical house equipped with beach towels, paper products, spices, laundry soap (to go along with three sets of washing machines!) and much more.
Truthfully, the pictures on line don't give the home the justice that it deserves. Originally, we thought the layout might be kind of strange with the kitchen being separate, however, it was awesome! It was the central meeting place for anyone looking for company and it gave everyone extra space when they needed it.
We kept reading about the outdoor showers and again we didn't understand what everyone was raving about. However,again words don't adequately describe the view and experience.
Last of all Coby the property manager was invaluable. He offered great direction of where to go and what to do. We enjoyed all of our outings!
St. John is a magical island with just the right touch of "local" flavor. We would highly recommend this vacation for everyone!!!
A great honeymoon getaway!
We stayed at Great Expectations for just a few days to celebrate our recent wedding, and it was the perfect getaway. The only problem was having to decide whether to relax in a hammock, float in the pool, or have a drink on the patio while taking in the gorgeous views from all around! Everything was provided for us - from a well-stocked kitchen to scuba gear. There was even a fruit bowl for us in the refrigerator when we arrived. Coby was very welcoming. He answered all of our questions and offered advice on how to best spend our short time there. We definitely plan on going back - to St. John and to Great Expectations!
Buchanan & Vaughn Family
Memories for a lifetime!
We stayed at Great Expectations with our 5 adult children and their spouse/partners and had a wonderful vacation! The house has a great common area where we gathered every night. Every item we needed throughout the villa was provided for us - there was nothing that we wanted that was not already provided! Even the kitchen has anything you need to make almost any type of meal! We all felt we had great privacy as well as room to socialize. The views & pools are amazing! Everything is well maintained. It was great to have beach chairs, towels, coolers and lots of ice available for us - easy to pack in the jeeps and head to the beachs! Coby was always available if we needed anything - a great Conceirge! We love the island and have been coming for years. We hope to make many return trips to this villa in the future!! It is by far the best we have experienced!
Good food, good friends, which way do I steer?
We have been friends since grade school, mid school, high school, and college. We are all turning 60 this year. What a magical group! Great Expectations is a place to solidify your spirituality. Great views, great help, great fun. Coby was great. Have I used enough greats?
Paradise in Paradise
Great Expectations exceeds expectations. For four couples, or two families with children, this is a great experience. The center of the house is the social gathering spot...two beautiful views, and three pools. On each side of the social center are two bedrooms, each with their own private bath and outdoor shower...a perfect set-up. The house is equipped with everything imaginable; you don't need to bring a thing except your flip flops!
St. John Perfection!!!
Chuck and Kristen,
We had a great time and will come back to Great Expectations again. She was a lovely place and was perfect for our group. By the way the weather cooperated perfectly and we did follow rarely seen Humpback Whales on the day sail that we took. We actually saw dolphins, turtles, and the whales (mother and calf) all on the same day.
Thanks for your time and assistance. Give our thanks to Coby and the great staff at Great Expectations!!
Vacation of a lifetime
I went to Great Expectations with a group of 13 girlfriends. I honestly cannot come up with anything less than wonderful to say about the trip. The only negative was that I had to return to Boston. The villa is gorgeous (especially the outdoor shower) and the view by the pool is breathtaking. Coby, the property manager, made us feel right at home. The island itself is amazing. The beaches are beautiful (especially Trunk Bay and Cinnamon Bay). I would suggest renting paddle boards at Cinnamon Bay. They even do a sunset paddle, but unfortunately we ended up not being able to participate in this. The other islands are also fantastic. I went to Tortola and Jost Van Dyke, both were worth the trip. The Soggy Dollar (especially the swim to the bar) was quite a memorable experience. If you are looking for the perfect getaway in paradise, I would definitely suggest gathering up 12 of your closest friends and heading to Great Expectations.
Fantastic vacation - beautiful villa
We could not have asked for a better experience renting a villa. The view from every window, patio, balcony and pool was breathtaking. Everything was extremely thoughtfully designed and stocked. The great room became a gathering place at all hours and site of sumptuous dinners nightly, everyone loved having en suite bathrooms, the pools and toys for all ages were perfect, the information collated and offered by the owners was comprehensive and up to date, and we especially appreciated the kitchens as we are enthusiastic cooks. Not a detail has been overlooked. We had a large group assembled for a special occasion, with guests ranging in age from 1 to over 75. We had plenty of space, loads of privacy, tons of fun, and everyone felt that it was just perfect, a small piece of heaven.
Best vacation ever
From the minute we set foot on St. John, everything was perfect. We were greeted at the dock by Coby, the property manager, who is, in my opinion, the nicest person on the island (and that's saying something since everyone is so friendly!). Throughout the week, he was quick to respond to any questions we had about the house, places to eat, things to see. He really went above and beyond to make sure our week was perfect.
The villa itself is a true luxury home, with all the amenities you could want on an extended vacation and many extra luxuries! Everything was clean, easy to use, and in mint condition. It is located in a nice, quiet neighborhood that is close enough to the downtown area and several beaches. The cab system there is very easy to use and they are familiar with the location of Great Expectations, so we didn't have to worry about directions.
The views from the villa are truly breathtaking. Watching the sunset from the pool, with a cocktail in hand is one of the most peaceful and enjoyable experiences you'll ever have.
Thank you for an unforgettable vacation!
Beautiful Villa with Gorgeous Views!
We could not be happier with our stay at Great Expectations! The villa was beautiful and the views were exquisite. Coby, the property manager, was deligtful and had great recommendations for us. the second we walked in we were immediately relaxed and felt like we were in paradise.
Perfect rental for any large group of friends or a family! We will definitely return :)
I spent five nights here with a group of friends in February 2013 and had the most amazing week! The island of St John is incredible and I cannot imagine a better place to stay while exploring it. There was tons of space for all 13 of us to stay comfortably, the new pool is awesome and the pictures do not do the view(s!)any justice. Watching the sun rise in the morning on one side and the sunset in the evening was such a treat.
Coby, the property manager went above and beyond to make us feel welcome and taken care of. I hope to be back at Great Expectations very soon!! Do yourself a favor and book - You will not regret it.
Best Vacation Ever!
12 friends and I just spent a week in paradise at Great Expectations. Words cannot express how much fun we had, and how wonderful Great Expectations was. It had every amenity we could want, an amazing and attentive property manager, and allowed us a week of relaxtion and fun. Could not recommend highly enough!
Vacation of a Lifetime
I recently visited Great Expectations with 12 friends for a week. Our interaction with Chuck, the owner, prior to arriving was tremendous. He was so informative and provided all the information we needed to ensure that the trip was a success. When we arrived on island, Coby was there to greet us and take us out to the villa.
When we arrived at the villa, we were all speechless -- actually, that's not true -- there was lots of squealing by how gorgeous everything was. It was as if there was something even better (if that's possible) around every corner! The new pool is a fantastic addition and was where we spent many sunsets.
I stayed specifically in the owner suite and the sunrise views couldn't be beat! The detached bedrooms provided everyone the opportunity to have their own space, while the great room offered the ability for everyone to hang out! The numerous hammocks around the property were also great for lounging and reading.
Coby was a delight from the moment we met him until the time we departed (he even brought our luggage down once we were checked out so we didn't have to lug it around town before we boarded the ferry). He was there so quickly whenever we called and willing to help with whatever we needed.
This was my first visit to St John and definitely will not be my last. The island, while small, provided so many beaches to visit, all boasting their own specialties (snorkeling at Waterlemon was great, the glass-like water of Salt Pond amazing, and the pristine white beaches at Trunk and Cinnamon were a crowd favorite).
I'd definitely recommend renting a jeep (not a car, a jeep) for your stay as the roads are windy and steep. If you make it on the other side of Bordeaux Mountain, look for the donkeys -- they're so friendly!
The last week was tremendous and I can't wait until I can make a plan to return to Great Expectations, as it exceeded my greatest of expectations (pun intended)!
South Hadley, MA USA
We stayed at Great Expectations for two weeks, along with other friends (at one point, there were ten of us). Throughout our stay, Chuck, Kristin, Coby, and Patty, were available, helpful, and completely responsive to our every need. We truly felt as if our comfort and happiness were their first priority.
The kitchen is fully equipped and we ate every meal at the villa. The pools and hot tubs were sparkling clean. We were fully connected to the internet at all times.
The location is superb. We woke up to see beautiful sunrises and sat out on the patio watching glorious sunsets. It is, quite simply, heaven on earth.
A fabulous setting for a family reunion!
Staying at Great Expectations was a bit of a splurge for our extended family of 14, but it was worth every penny! The combination of private, spacious bedrooms/baths and a large great room for family gatherings was perfect for our group which consisted of 5 individual families, three generations, with ages ranging from 15 to 87.
We made good use of the hammocks, pools, tennis court and basketball hoop, outdoor grill, and enjoyed cocktails as we watched the sunset each night in the west, and (some of us) arose for the spectacular sunrises in the east. There were many areas to congregate, both indoors and out, allowing us to enjoy both private and group conversations while taking in the view.
The resource materials in the great room were extremely helpful, and the DVD collection included a number of excellent films for young and old. The kitchen was extremely well-equipped and we enjoyed taking turns preparing delicious appetizers and dinners. Even the kids took responsibility for one of the evening repasts!
Our days typically went as follows: get up early for coffee and breakfast, drive somewhere for a hike followed by some time snorkeling, swimming or otherwise enjoying the beach, lunch back at Great Expectations, a peaceful afternoon of games or reading or chatting, drinks and appetizers while watching the sunset, followed by dinner and a sometimes a sporting event on TV or a movie.
I loved the natural beauty of St. John's and the way that Great Expectations maximized our ability to enjoy our surroundings. My only regrets were that I did not apply enough insect repellent at dusk (the insects were fierce, though you rarely saw them doing their damage) and the fact that we did not make advance reservations for hiking the Reef Bay Trail. Otherwise it was a perfect vacation!
No regrets, quibbles or disappointments; just sheer delight during a weeklong stay for a family reunion of fourteen people. Everything was as advertised and more. The owners were superbly organized, communicative & accommodating, the home both immaculate and user-friendly. The property is obviously cherished, and justifiably so. The views are spectacular. Everything (really!) you need is right there. "Great Expectations" is both wonderfully romantic and very family-friendly; it's rambling, view-capitalizing architecture makes it easy to be both private and public with others. It's a steep schlep downhill to the local beaches, but the three swimming pools make the beach a lesser option. (Amazing, but true.) So much to do for all ages on site that going around the island seemed almost superfluous.
We have rented vacation homes all over the globe, and I have to say that as a multi-family relaxing vacation property, "Great Expectations" has topped all others.
Our extended family gathered for a week at Great Expectations to celebrate a major family milestone. 14 people aged 15 to 87.
The positive experience started months in advance as Kristin and Chuck went out of their way to welcome the group, answer our myriad of questions and provide us with excellent advance advice.
We arrived from five different directions and Coby helped us all settle in at the villa. With five different "family units" and three generations, the space was fantastic. Everyone had room to spread out and convene as they wished. Some played tennis... some lounged by the pool... and everyone took pictures of the views - both east and west.
Everything was spotless when we arrived and everything there - appliances, pools, beds, etc were in such good condition that it made everyone comfortable and everything easy from the beginning.
Looking one direction we enjoyed beautiful sunrises. In the other, colorful sunsets. The winter breezes kept the bugs to a minimum (but there were definitely still bugs).
The main house was so well equipped that we ended up eating every dinner (and all but a few meals) at home. Missing a spice for cooking? It was there. A particular tool or pan? They were all there.
What would we recommend doing?
1. North shore beaches
2. Hiking in the park
3. Hidden Reef Ecotour
4. Diving with Low Key Divers
We all did a little bit of everything.
The universal sentiment of the group was a huge "wow"!! The space brought us together as a family and allowed us to celebrate in a way we probably couldn't have one in any ohter location.
Huge thanks to Kristin and Chuck for creating such a unique and open environment. We all believe that Great Expectations exceeded expecations and would happily recommend it to anyone.
Perfect in every way.
The perfect house for a family vacation!
Super user friendly with even a wading pool for the little ones, amazing people to help with whatever you need, sunrises and sunsets - yes, both sunrises and sunsets! - and attention to every detail for a worry free stay.
Perfect location for every aspect of a perfect vacation.
We are coming back!
Easy living at Great Expectations
We stayed at Great Expectations in June 2012. I'm always looking for the simple life on vacations. And boy does Great Expectations cater to that. Life on St Johns is easy as it is but combine it with this villa and you are set. Daily routine: am adult coffee time overlooking the bays, then go to one of the many excellent beaches, return home for happy hour, swimming and dinner. We never went out, it was too easy to just make at the villa for a large group. This was our routine every day and we never got bored of it.
For our group (9 adults, 7 kids), it was a mini resort. All of the kids were between 13-17 and loved the freedom this property provides. They were able to walk down to Chocolate hole and swim, fish, hang out like teenagers love to do. The adults felt very secure that they were safe. At night, we all met back up at the Great Room for dinner, drinks and fun. It allowed for everyone to have the freedom to do what they wanted when they wanted. Personal Choice is what I coin it.
Colby was the man, met us at the ferry terminal and drove us to the car rental agency, then toured us thru the villa. (I want his job when he retires, if he retires) He was very accessible throughout the vacation (of course we didn't have to call on him for much since Great Expectations proved to be trouble free). The only thing that caused some inconvenience was the water ran out the last day. But Colby quickly came and switched to another water source. No problems and no worries.
I'm happy to say, we booked another vacation 1 week after returning. That's how much this place now means to us. I can definitely see returning year after year to this wonderful island and villa.
Snowbirds Cape Cod & FL
Satellite Beach, FL and Hyannis, MA
First Class all the way!
Kristin and Chuck have thought of every need for a vacation of a livetime Nine couples from TN, MI, Ma, FL,& VT just returned from a week together at Great Expectations to celebrate Steve and Carrie's 10th anniversary. (They stayed at G. E. for their wedding.) We enjoyed St. John - the restaurants, beaches, happy hours, etc. - BUT the best times were had in the great room and pool area at the villa. Several nights we chose to stay in and use the gourmet kitchen and grill area. We can not think of one suggestion to improve this perfect paradise and are planning for a return trip in early 2014!
literally, the best damn villa on st john
we've stayed at other villas, big and small; we've stayed at bed & breakfasts, the Westin Resort and even visited friends staying at Caneel Bay. Great Expectations still is tops in our book: we are 2 weeks away from our 7th visit! Our first visit, we stayed in the owner's apartment (one couple). Our second was to bring a whole wedding party down and it was 7 couples. The multiple pools, hot tubs and large grounds with paths and even a tennis court make it less of a villa and more a compound. You can have a small party by the pool or make breakfast for 14, or you can get away to a hammock or hot tub and read a book with a warm sea breeze. I honestly can't say enough about the place, the owners and the overall ease with which we vacation on St. John while at Great Expectations. Try it for 2 or for 14, i bet you'll love it as much as we do!
In fact, we are heading back for another week in 2 weeks!
Best place on St. John for getting the entire family together!
Everything was fabulous!
Tennis courts come with a view to kill!
The villa comes with a property manager who acts as a personal concierge. He worked with us daily to make sure we experienced everything we wanted to do while on St. John.
There are several things that are great about this property...
Many of the rooms have views of both sunrise and sunset!
The capacity is available to accommodate a large family, but when everyone is done talking / gathering etc, the houses are far enough apart to provide the privacy you need from time to time to really unwind. In this way, Great Expectations is unique. Truly.
The owners are fantastic - very helpful and went the extra mile to help plan our trip.
No complaints at all. This is a really great place to bring your entire extended family for a relaxing, memorable vacation!
Great Villa for family
The Villa has wonderful views and a great cross breeze - we didn't even use our air conditioning. We rented out the entire villa for family and a few friends and it was nice that everyone had their own space. The only downside is the pool is on the small/shallow side, but we still did a lot of hanging out in it. You definitely need to rent a car to get to the other side of the island beaches and it is hard to walk on the steep roads. We rented 2 cars for the villa, which worked out well (remember your car insurance or they charge you an extra $100 per car). Overall, it was a great villa, great location and we would all come back here again. Read more
Response from Great Expectations - 08/01/2012
Seren and Tim,
Many thanks for your 5 star review! We agree that a great feature of the Villa is that our architect sited it so as to afford fabulous views of the Caribbean sunrise and sunset, and to benefit from the easterly Tradewinds which provide a wonderful, cooling breeze. We also agree that the Main Villa swimming and sunning/wading pool is small for your party of 12 adults -- we start construction of a new, larger pool in 2 weeks so please do stay with us again soon!
Chuck and Kristin
A Great Family Get-Together
We had a great time. The villa was top notch and very kid friendly. St. John is a very beautiful place with lots to do and see. We had a great time snorkling, scuba diving and hiking to all the interesting ruins. The grandkids loved the pool and beach. The beaches were fantastic. Our favorite was Frances Bay; we usually had it to ourselves, although ocassionally someone else would show up. Last but not least; Coby, the property manager, deserves a special thanks for being a great guy. He went out of his way to bring "Piggy", a very special stuffed pink pig, to the dock as we were catching the ferry back to St. Thomas. He made a 2 year old little girl very happy!!!
Perfect getaway for families
We just returned from a week long stay at Great Expectations. Everything was exactly as advertised. The owners helped us with airport pickup and renting a car on St. John. Coby met us at the ferry dock and was incredibly helpful all week - he even brought a new blender over in less than on hour when we discovered that the current one was not working. The view from the house were great. The bedrooms were all very spacious and private - beds were very comfortable. The best part is the yard and the pool deck. We had teenagers and a 3 year old and the way the pool is designed is just fantastic. Everyone had their space, yet everyone was able to be together. We will definitely return!
Everything was awesome and came through as advertised
all thirteen family members in age from 16 to 62 had a wonderful experience at Great Expectations.
An utter and complete dream of a vacation.
We adored Great Expectations. From the rooms to the fabulous concierge service, the trip was a dream. Our group of 9 included a 9-month old, a 3 year old and 7 adults - everyone was entirely satisfied. Great Expectations provided the space for family enjoyment as well as private time.
My parents planned the trip to celebrate their 40th anniversary with all of their kids and grandchildren. They were able to share the occasion with all of us, but also felt that Great Expectations allowed everyone to do as they pleased and have their own space. St. John was incredibly beautiful and allowed everyone opportunities to enjoy the activities they wanted to explore. We did some activities, such as beach trips, meals and shopping, together but we were all able to roam the island as we pleased.
Coby, the fantastic manager at Great Expectations, could not have been more helpful. He made sure our arrival on island was smooth, our car rentals were easy and even helped us learn about the island in order to choose our activities. Our fridge was stocked with necesseties upon arrival and Coby spent time with us to educate us about what we might want to do during our stay.
Chuck and Kristen have made Great Expectations a phenomenal getaway - it feels like your home for your stay and could not be more enjoyable. There are 2 wonderful saltwater pools and one small saltwater childrens pool. Everyone had a wonderful time enjoying the views from the pool and our kids loved all the pool toys. Our 3 couples, 1 20-something and 2 children all felt comfortable throughout the property and the island. The guidebooks and handmade information binders at the house were incredibly helpful in making choices about where to go and what to do.
I would recommend Great Expectations for any couple, family or group looking for a place where everyone can enjoy themselves alone or as a group. The property really focuses on making anyone comfortable. Read more
Response from Great Expectations - 06/20/2012
The water in all the pools is fresh water, not saltwater. Special NaCl (purified household salt) is added to the water in the pools periodically instead of chlorine; we have special filter systems for the pools which electronically remove the "Na" from the "NaCl" leaving just enough "Cl" to keep the water in the pools fresh, soft and clean without any salt taste or having to use harsh chemicals.
we found paradise!
We had a wonderful time at Great Expectations from day one! The property manager, Coby, met us at the ferry, toured our new home for the week, and showed us the way to an amazing vacation.
The villa more than exceeded our needs, plenty of room for fun with the entire group and when needed, private space indoors and out.
Recommend a rental car to explore north beaches and east end but if unable, the short walk to chocolate hole beach for swimming/snorkeling is easy.
The only thing I liked least was the size of the pool( not a lap pool ), however, with the beautiful sea surrounding you it really isn't an issue!
We are planning a return trip and hopefully staying longer! Thanks to the owners and especially the friendly staff. Coby went above and beyond and we are grateful!
Response from Great Expectations - 06/10/2012
Thanks for the great feedback. We agree that the Villa swimming pool -- part of which is a sunning/wading pool -- is too small for large groups like your party of 13 adults. We are planning to construct this Fall another, larger swimming pool to the west of the existing pool patio with an incredible sunset view of the Caribbean Sea, so come on back!
Chuck and Kristin
Crazy Mother of 8
Our Best Vacation ever!!!
We love Great Expectations and we love St. John's! My husband has stage IV Colon Cancer and we wanted to take a vacation of a lifetime to create beautiful memories for our 8 children. When we arrived at the villa I started bawling! It was so breathtakingly beautiful and I was so overwhelmed with the thought that this would be a place we would always remember!
Our week in St. John was incredible and more than we ever hoped for thanks to the perfect vacation home, the beautiful scenery, and the kindness of everyone we met.
Great Expectations had everything we needed, was very comfortable and extremely relaxing. There wasn't a thing we didn't like!
Grand Rapids, MI
Great Expectations has every convenience and was the perfect pla
Great Expectations is designed for maximum enjoyment and comfort. It is situated to observe sunrise and sunset views and capture constant trade winds that are so refreshing. There are outdoor hammocks and chairs in and out of the sun and around the pool and hot tub. The great room is perfect for gatherings (a large dining table and a very nice TV) and the bedrooms allow privacy with the outdoor showers being a real treat. We really appreciated all the extras available when heading out to the beach... towels, chairs, coolers, ice machine, and loads of interesting reading materials about the beaches and St. John in general. The staff was excellent! I would highly recommend this compound for any large group.
Even Better Than Expected
I'm leery of vacation spots and rentals that seem to be too good to be true when viewed online, but for Great Expectations I can say true!!! We had a group of 14, ages 5 to 84, but the layout of Great Expectations made it never seem bigger that 5 or 6.
The kitchen was great and the provided cooking utensils where excellent, especially for a rental. The fact that they provide all the little things that you wished you had, or would have to go out and buy at other locations was a real plus. The coolers, beach bags, cooler bags, kids beach toys, and the great beach chairs, just take away any hassles that can tinge a vacation.
It's been a month since we were there and everybody is still talking about different aspects of our stay. My sister still pines about the view from her outdoor shower. I will never forget the beautiful sunrises that were framed perfectly from the bed in the owner's suite.
We had a few very minor issues, and I mention them only to show I'm not just a Pollyanna. The outdoor grill became possessed, and hissed and spewed flame a few times, but Coby was right there and fixed it right away. We had some ants, but when folks spill fruit juice and drinks and don't clean it up (Miles and Collin we know)...what do you expect. My father's only complaint was about the TV in the little room under the master suites. He could only get a Spanish station...why he needed a TV we can't figure out. That is truly as tough as it got for us.
The only way this could have gotten better would have been if we could have just walked out the door onto Trunk or Cinnamon Bay beach (and if you have been to St John, you know that doesn't exist)...but then we would have had to give up the privacy and unexpected quiet and peace that Great Expectations provides.
One of the best places to stay on St John.
If you normally stay at the westin with other families on your vacation (as we do, you may consider treating yourself to Great Expectations. They have taken an incredible location (Great views of ocean and harbor), and created a mini resort, where they provide everything you could think of, to make your stay a dream vacation. You go to bed with a perfect temperature trade winds blowing thru your room, as the sun sets off your back deck. You get awoken to that same incredible breeze, lift your head slightly, to the sun coming up over the ocean. Due to the incredible thought out ammenities and view, the group of 14 actually saved money, as we decide against hitting the restaurants, and made dinner after beach one of the most enjoyable parts (kids played in pool and tennis court as we cooked on the barbeque). Perfectly situated, it is a 2 minute drive to the food store and cruz bay, but you feel like your on an island. One of the best parts, is due to the design, you get the seperation of having your own rooms and space (key if u have little kids), but still get the pleasure of sharing the day together, like you are in your own home.
Audrey and Michael Straight
Great Expectations exceeds expectations!
Great Expectations is about as perfect as I can imagine! Sunrise and sunset views every day! Beautifully maintained, gorgeous views everywhere you look, amenities for every age (where else could you find a portable beach cabana for a baby?) , lovely decorating, amazing landscaping. We took our kids and grandkids (4 family units) and the design of the villa enables everyone to interact, but also have private time. Thanks so much to the owners and to the property manager for making a great time exceed expectations!
Our Great Expectations were wildly surpassed!
Great Expectations exceeded our wildest hopes! Our group of four families delighted in every moment of our week there. The accommodations were excellent! Around every corner was a breath-taking view, lush and fragrant flowers, and another inviting perch to take a moment and delight in the surroundings. It was truly magnificent and each member of our party smiled from the moment they rose to the time they settled in for the evening in the very comfortable beds! The villa is brilliantly designed, as there are wonderful places to come together, while there are many lovely spots to chill out away from everyone! We played tennis, basketball, swam, did yoga on the tennis courts and had a blast going for walks around Chocolate Hole, meandering up steep hills to beautiful vistas! Everything was perfect and the gentleman that met us upon our arrival facilitated us in finding fresh local fish brought in by local fisherman! He was sincere in his promise to help us in any and every way we might require and made our visit even more perfect with his kindnesses. To quote Dickens, "Great Expectations", which I had to reread upon our return from our brilliantly fabulous week in St. John,
"The sky was blue, the larks were soaring high over the green. I thought all the countryside more beautiful and peaceful by far than I had ever known it to be yet. Many pleasant pictures of the life that I would lead there, and of the change for the better that would come over my character when I had a guiding spirit at my side whose simple faith and clear home-wisdom I had proved, beguiled my way. They awakened a tender emotion in me; for my heart was softened by my return, and such a change had come to pass..." We'll dream of coming back and will be treasuring and cherishing the memories made at the beautiful villa! Thank you!
John & Barbara and Family
Hunterdon County, NJ
A Perfect Vacation
Great Expectations was a perfect place for our family to vacation this winter and in so many ways exceeded our expectations.
The location was perfect, a few minutes from Cruz Bay, a quiet and very private retreat. The bedrooms were very spacious and comfortable and set away from the living room/kitchen area so the early birds didn't have to worry about waking up the others, and those who retired early were not disturbed by the night owls.
There were many lush flowering plants and shady trees with welcoming pools, hammocks and lounges to enjoy. To be able to see both the spectacular sunrises and sunsets over Hart Bay and Chocolate Hole was definitely a unique bonus.
We all agreed that a week was not long enough to fit in all that we wanted to do and see and find enough time to relax and unwind and enjoy this beautiful villa.
January 2012 was our second stay with friends at Great Expectations. Kristin and Chuck have created the perfect complement to St John's beauty and warmth. The accommodations are gracious, well thought out, and equipped to meet all the needs of an island holiday. I travel a good deal and see all kinds of efforts at creating gracious surroundings. Great Expectations is a home run. It is a pity that one vandal has sought, for whatever reason, to spoil the reviews of this wonderful place. It is the risk we all face in the age of electronic review.
There were 8 of us on this return visit to Great Expectations and though this place has always been a wonderful getaway, the renovations to the Great Room definitely added to our experience. The views from both sides of the house were, as always, breathtaking, and in addition to being able to see both amazing sunrises and sunsets, we were treated to 2 full rainbows during our week. We can't wait to return!
Fantastic week on St. John at Great Expectations!
Four couples spent an idyllic week at Great Expectations. The villa is very well-equipped with anything you might want from beach towels and chairs to insulated bags for our lunches and a gas grill and a kitchen that had was perfect for cooking with all the cooking gear needed. The views are spectacular from every angle with a different vista from every window- both sunrise and sunset. The manager of the property was extremely responsive whenever we had a question or concern-(one of the keys was hard to use) and fixed the problem immediately. The location is very convenient to shopping, restaurants, and beaches but a car is essential so you can explore different beaches each day. All in all a wonderful property. We've been back about 5 times with friends and family.
South Hadley, MA
Another wonderful time at Great Expectations
This is the second year that we spend two fantastic weeks at Great Expectations with family and friends. As fantastic as our experience was last year, it was enhanced by the addition of the new property manager, Coby, who was incredibly responsive and proactive. Upgrades to the TV, the refrigerator, the dishwasher, storage containers, and beach chairs demonstrate that Chuck and Kristin care about their property and making sure that their guests are well taken care of. We have been vacationing in the Virgin Islands since 2000 and have rented 5 other properties on St. John and on Tortolla (and stayed at the Westin). While the others were very nice -- and at least one of them much pricier -- none compares with the overall quality and value of Great Expectations. We would definitely stay there again and recommend it to anyone who wants a relaxed, yet quality, island vacation.
The villa is spacious and well situated to take advantage of the Trade Winds,the stunning water views, sunrises, and sunsets. Plus is an easy trip to town and the beaches. The layout allows for lots of guest room privacy, as well as a great living/dining/pool/patio that accommodates a large group and provides a perfect place to party. The Kitchen is extremely well equipped, there are lots of nice beach towels, bath towels, washers/dryers -- essentially,all mod cons. The owners go out of their way to keep the villa comfortable and up to date. The property manager is terrific, always responsive, helpful, and gracious.
Laurie & Gary
Splendid accommodations in Paradise
We think Great Expectations is an ideal place to stay on St. John. We stayed here for nine days with family & friends & it was perfect
The property is thoughtfully designed to take full advantage of the great views & breezes from all spaces. It's wonderful to come back after a day at the beach & enjoy refreshments & sunsets, while preparing dinner. In 9 days of +80 degree F temps., we never had to turn on the aC, between the breezes, ceiling fans, screened doors & windows; we were comfortable, while being able to enjoy the views & the sounds of the ocean. The landscaping of the property makes it very private & enhances the views.
The Great Room is very nice. It's set up to accommodate a large number of people for meals & hanging out. The kitchen is very well stocked with appliances, dishes, cooking implements; we love to cook & never wanted for anything. The barbecue is the best we have ever used at a vacation rental. It is truly fully equipped to meet the needs of any size group with up to date entertainment components, very comfortable seating & dining areas & laundry facilities.
The master suites are very comfortable & truly private. With their own outdoor showers under the palms (a favorite of ours) large bathrooms & space to spread out. We slept very well.
The owners were very helpful & accommodating. They have tried to think of everything to make ones stay perfect; water toys for kids & adults, beach towels, chairs & coolers for taking to the beach. The pool is kid friendly & there is a full size tennis court with basketball hoops too. The property is very well maintained & not lacking in any way we can think of.
St. John, the island, has so much to recommend it and Great Expectations is the perfect place to stay while there. It would be perfect for just about any group of people who wanted to vacation together. It would be just as wonderful for a romantic getaway. Great Expectations exceeded all of our expectations & we look forward to returning.
8 grandkids, 8 adults - a week of great weather and super beaches - coupled with our fantastic accomodations at Great Expectations. Fully equipped with everything we needed for the beaches and cooking. Enjoyed the pools, tennis court and basketball - wonderful views. Can't say enough - just great!
North Andover, MA
Best Family Vacation
My husband and I honeymooned in St. John 5 years ago. We loved it so much that we brought our families back with us.
When we started our search for places to stay, we were a little discouraged because the prices were sky high at the hotels and it was difficult to find a villa that could accomodate our large group (14 adults). Thanks to Great Expectations, we were able to do just that. Chuck was very helpful with answering all of our questions before we booked and after hearing from him, we knew that this was going to be the perfect place for us!
When we arrived, we were very happy to see that the place we were staying was exactly as the website described. The view is one of the first things that you notice upon arrival. It was such a beautiful sight, we knew we weren't going to be disappointed with the rest of the villa.
My husband and I were the last to arrive so when we got there, everyone was already enjoying the pool and some cocktails. The setup of the main house with the pool right outside was awesome. It made it so we could do everything in that one area.
My husband and I stayed in the owners apartment and we were very happy with that, however, we spent most of our time at the main house with our families.
The main house was great. The kitchen was very updated and well stocked. There was an area to watch tv and a dinner table that could fit 8. Our only problem with the tv area was that the tv wasn't working well. Although nobody missed watching it, the diehard Patriots fans were a little upset to be missing the 1st preseason game! We had an ipad so we kept them updated though.
The bedrooms were all very nice and spacious. My parents room had a problem with the aC but Coby took care of it right away!Coby and Chuck were very accomodating to all our needs throughout our whole experience.
In all, GE was more than amazing. I would highly recommend this villa to large groups (I actually alreay have!) and I definitly hope to return!
Best vacation ever!
Best vacation of our lives - hands down!
40th anniversary celebration with our kids and grandkids, ages 1-62. Great Expectations was the perfect setting for everyone. The villa was extremely family friendly and well-equipped, and Coby, the property manager, was an outstanding source of information about the villa and beyond. Cooked in most nights. Beautiful, open kitchen--a couple of notes: the large double refrigerators are great, but the doors are not safe places for bottles of wine (& the pretty tile floor is unforgiving when they crash!) Also- we found that the sticker-shock at the grocery store (yes, food is very expensive there) can be lessened if the adult children cook for Mom and Dad. :) Amazing place; we'll be back!
Bill and Sue
Maggie Valley, North Carolina
A perfect family vacation on St. John, Usvi
We planned a family reunion at Great Expectations. There were 6 grandchildren and 8 adults. The villa is laid out so well that there was plenty of room for gathering and private away time. The grounds were beautiful and the views of sunrise and sunset were spectacular. The location is ideal. Coby, the property manager, was competent, kind and extremely helpful. The owners are very proud of their villa and want their guests to have a wonderful experience on St. John. They are very accommodating on reservations and communicate promptly. We could not have asked for anything more.
It Was Great!!
We had a wonderful time swimming, snorkeling, watching beautiful sunrises and sunsets. The location of the villa is perfect. The owners provided everything we needed - the kitchen was completely stocked with all the utensils you would need, gas grills, washing machine/dryer, water sports equipment, beach towels, tennis rackets and balls, etc., etc. They thought of everything! This was our second stay at Great Expectations and I would certainly recommend it.
Great Expectations was great! First and foremost is the space. Good kitchen, great room, bedrooms and bathrooms. The most used space was under the retractable awning on the pool deck and of course, the pool. We snorkeled at different beaches every day (usually 2 different ones each day) but our favorite was coming back "home" and relaxing in the pool. The kitchen was very well stocked with any utensil, dish, pot, or spice you would need. Previous guests were kind enough to leave "condiments" which saved us some money at the grocery store. Coby, the property manager, could not have been better! He was attentive to everything we asked of him. And his restaurant and shopping recommendations were spot-on! We arrived on a Saturday and it was raining. It has been raining for 2 weeks which is very unusual. We didn't actually see the sun until Thursday, but still got sunburn through the rain clouds and luckily, it wasn't bad enough to keep us from the beaches. We only had 6 in our party so the villa was plenty big. And it would be great for a much larger party too. We never used the basketball/tennis court but it can be a definite plus for those who play! Chuck and Kristin send out a detailed letter before you trip which came in very handy... from car rental to possible excursions. The views are great, but we noticed that the foliage was very overgrown (because of all the recent rain?) that it was hard to sit on the different patios/decks and see the water on either side. You needed to be standing up. By the way, the flowers and plants are beautiful. So many different flowers!
Essex Junction, Vermont
Sisters - daughters - nieces (12 women on the loose)
We had a fantastic trip to St. John and Great Expectations was spectacular. This was my fourth stay at the property and each time is better than the last...there were so many upgrades the best of which was all the new appliances!!!
We enjoyed the amazing views, the pools, and the shared living space. The private bedrooms made the stay most enjoyable as everyone had the ability to go to their own space if needed.
The care taker Coby, was wonderful. He came at our beck and call, he was professional, and great at his job.
We loved the location - it was close to town and a short ride to all the beaches.
We will be back for a fifth trip. We love Great Expectations!
Great Expectations Surpassed "Great Expectations"
We lucked out for sure on finding this villa! It was the first one we found and the only place we looked into after reading the rave reviews and viewing the website. The party included me and my wife, our two young aughters (5 and 8), and my inlaws and sister and brohter in law.
The website photos, as good as they are do not do this place justice. The place is beatiful and spotless. At first our group didn't want to leave our villa but St. John is a beatiful island with lots to see and do. We did make sure to leave time every day to enjoy it in the morning and then again in the afternoon and early evening. As noted on the website, the sunset's are spectacular! With our two young girls in tow, I witnessed the sunrise from our room terrace on most mornings as they were set to wake at the crack of dawn every morning.
The kitchen is well equipped. We spent one night home after cooking a big BBQ chiken and rib dinner. We cooked and ate breakfast on most mornings and enjoyed our own mixes of island coctails by the pool.
One big lure here was the tennis court. This was of big appeal to my wife's family as they are all avid tennis players. The court was in good shape but we only played on a couple of mornings as it gets quite hot early.
Owner Chuck, he is great. He gave us lots of insight on what to do and see on the island before our arrival as well as lending helpful tips on arrival / departure logistics.
When we arrived, we were greeted by the villa manager Coby. I cannot say enough nice things about Coby. He helped to make the whole experience as perfect as it was. He gave us great advice on what to do and where to eat. All his recommendations were right on. We only had to contact him once, to free a large iguana that was trapped in the tennis court net, which he did without harm to this beautiful creature!
I highly recommend this villa!
Our stay at Great Expectations was wonderful! We had two families including several children with us, and it accommodated our group perfectly. We enjoyed beautiful scenery with a very island-like ambiance throughout the property. We have stayed there twice now, and expect to return in the future. I would recommend it to anyone!
John and Tami
River Falls, Wisconsin
An all in one vacation villa!
This property is absolutely fantastic! A beautiful location and nearly anything you could want from home is already there. We absolutely loved our stay and will attempt to make this an annual visit if possible from now on! Chuck and Kristin are wonderful people and as luck would have it we met during our stay and it made our vacation all the better!
Vinnie & Priscilla
The best yet
My husband and I have stayed, with friends or by ourselves, at 6 different villas on St. John (and 1 on Tortolla) over the past 10 years. Great Expectations was the best in all respects. The location, views, amenities, etc., etc., were all exactly what we were looking for. It is set up perfectly for a group of adults who want "together time" as well as "by ourselves" time. The owners couldn't have been more accommodating, and the management company was very helpful in answering a few questions that we had. All in all, a fantastic experience - one we hope to repeat.
Location, location, location
As I state in the title, the location of this villa is, to me, it's major asset. To die for views, quick access to two very different bays, close to town and the ferry; it's so easy to stay here.
We also enjoyed having the bedrooms separate from the gathering areas... very smart.
All the staff that we met were very nice and helpful and the owner went out of his way to accommodate our changing plans in a trying situation.
Most memorable vacation and wedding
Villa was perfect accomodation for large extended family. Plenty of space for personal time. Lots of hammocks hidden away. Spectacular views. Everything you could imagine to need was provided.
Best part was the provacy of the sleeping quarters. Worse part was the need for additional fans in the great room. Read more
Response from Great Expectations - 09/28/2010
We abide by the adage that 'the customer is always right' and are hanging an 8-foot Big Ass Fan (I kid you not; that is its name!) under the skylights in the cathedral ceiling of the Great Room. Rest assured you can come back for an anniversary celebration and be cool in great style (the fan cost $3000 and we had to ship it by boat to St. John, but is well worth it). Thanks for your comments and we look forward to your return!
Overland Park, Kansas
Great Expectations meets and exceeds it's name
This was our third trip to St. John. I like this little island more than anyplace I've ever visited. Half of the natives ignore you and the other half treat you like family. I haven't visited during the busy season, but this time of year it is wonderful and easy to get around . We had 13 people in our group and never had any trouble with dinner reservations or anything else except parking. That wasn,t a problem either after we found a pay lot around the corner from St John Spice. It's pretty entertaining watching them park lots of cars in such a small space. Great guys work there. Great Expectations- Wonderful. We had a 4 yr old with us and he took the small triangular pool as his own soon after we arrived. While the pools appear small in the pictures they were big enough. You wouldn't think you would need a hot tub in the heat but with the breeze at night it got used alot. The villa had more pool toys than you could ever use, as well as tennis rackets, basketballs and noodles and chairs and coolers for the beach.We ended up eating most of our meals out,but the kitchen had everything you would need to cook anything. We chose Great Expectations because we wanted to be together,but the way the villa is set up you have plenty of room to get away for a while. I hope I'm leaving the impression that we had a wonderful time,in a wonderful villa on a wonderful island. Wonderful!!!
Happy Customer from PA
Great villa for large groups
Our Stay at Great Expectations was great. We had 5 different families with a total of 15 people. Kids ages ranged from 13-21...the tennis court/basketball court are a big plus when you have to keep kids entertained.
The layout of the villa works perfectly if you are traveling with a group. Bedrooms allow you to have your own space with your own private balcony area while the main room and pool area are perfect when you all want to be together.
The only reason I did not rate the location as 5 star is because I prefer a bit more isolation from neighbors; you are in a residential area so houses are close and lots of them. That being said we heard very little noise all week and the landscaping around the houses provide privacy...I'm from the country...I prefer my neighbors a couple of miles away:). It was very convenient to town so that was a plus.
I would recommend this villa to anyone and would stay again if traveling with a large group.
Great Expectations was wonderful! The views alone are worth the rental of this property. There were five adults, six teenagers and one chid in our group and to use my families words "one of the best vacations ever"! The grounds are well maintained and beautiful and the thought that went in to the design of these villas is obvious. We always felt like we were together but when you needed privacy you escaped to your own piece of heaven! It's everything you see on the website and more. The pools, saunas, tennis court, etc. make you feel like you have your own resort to yourself!
The Location of Great Expectation is another great feature of this property. You are clearly in one of the premier locations on St.Johns. Private, quiet, exclusive but when you are ready to go out for the evening or for any reason you are conveniently located to all of Islands best locations, restraunts, shopping, groceries, and most importanlty, the beautiful beaches. We stronlgy recommend renting cars in St.Thomas and taking the car ferry over to St.Johns. It's simple, convenient, much more affordable, and very adventurous.
You deal with very professional, honest property managers and owners who do everything in their power to make your stay at Great Expectations perfect. My experience with these folks on every level was excellent. This was our first trip to the Carribbean and we were set at ease dealing with the owners from the very beginning. The information and time they spend helping you prepare for this trip is invaluable. We felt like they had our best interest at heart. I could go on and on but bottom line we strongly recommend this property.
Funnest Villa on St. John
THis was our second time to St. John, both time staying at Great Expectations. This villa is so great because all the family can come but you still have separate buildings all within walking distance. It also feels very much like the islands becuas of the set up. There is not a bad view from any angle. It was close enough to run out to the grocery store when you needed, but far enough away that we felt like we had our own little island sometimes. Great location for a family vacation with grown kids and in-laws. The owners are very helpful during the planning stage, even when last minute changes arrive. We will definetly be staying at Great Expectations again!
St. John Family
Family Vacation on St. John
This is our fourth stay on St. John, always in different locations. We really like this house. It had a lot of room, and our kids enjoyed the pool. The location is convenient. They had all the amenities we'd need and everything was very clean. We'd recommend it to other families and large groups.
Oklahoma CIty, OK
Great Expectations ~ a place that truly lives up to its title! T
We loved everything about the villa! The privacy was wonderful. We loved it so much, we just wanted to spend time there rather than hanging out in town in the evenings. The lighted walkway to the pool under the moonlight at night is quite magical. The hammocks strategically placed to give you respite and privacy from the rest of your group if you need to recharge. I enjoyed the solitude of the villa as well as the great views from both sides of every room. I fell asleep every night to the sound of the ocean, a sound I never tire of. The ocean breezes are so wonderful, there is really no need to turn on the air conditioning. As we took walks around the neighborhood, we realized we were so blessed to have found the absolute BEST villa to stay in for its views of both Hart Bay and Chocolate Hole. Amazing! Anytime we needed something, we only needed to call the maintenence guy to come over and take care of it. I would love to be able to stay here every time I come to St John. This was my first visit but I know it will not be my last! The island is amazingly beautiful, friendly, tranquil - a place where time and worries are forgotten. Enjoy the local coconut ice cream, great snorkeling, beaches like Cinnamon Bay and Trunk Bay, many great hiking trails. I've traveled all over the world, but never found a little spot quite so tranquil yet with so much to offer!
New York, NY
40s Birthday Bash
We had a group of 8 and had a Gr8t time.
The grounds were perfect, the hot tub and pool was a great treat for
relaxing, the rooms were the perfect size and the tennis courts were great
for getting some exercise.
Plenty of towels, snorkeling gear, music connections and all around
The washing machine was a great perk.
On the last day we met the owners. What a treat.
Thanks a bunch and hope to see you again soon.
frank from massachusetts
WOW what a great experience!
WOW, what a great villa!! First time not staying at a hotel and LOVED it!
Expansive views on both sides of beautiful turquoise water, from the pools,
great room AND the outdoor showers in the 4 large Main Villa bedrooms.
No need to bring anything but bathing suit, walking shorts and casual
shirts, EVERYTHING else is provided.
I was there for a full month, with family and friends and i still wanted to
I have already booked the same for next year! All (8 people) who stayed this
year are eagerly awaiting next years stay
Perfect location, quiet, but less than ten minutes from the TEMPTING
restaurants and shopping of Cruz Bay.
And a staff and owners committed to your enjoyment.
Website is factually accurate, but does not even begin to do justice to this
well maintained and homey villa.
Each beach was more spectacular than the one before, with each having its
own style (spirited, quiet, boats, snorkeling, water sports, small islands.
Trunk Beach was one of our faves and as for restaurants, paradiso,
waterfront and you MUST go to rhumblines, were the best. We ate at each
three times during my 4 week stay.
Hinds was nouvelle and delicious but no ambience.
Westin Hotel has a great steak house and sparkling setting..
Equator at Caneel Bay was more islandy with funky and delicious fish
choices (I had lobster/crab cakes as an appetizer and a large grilled lobster
with sides for about $65) in a large, romantic, semi outdoor and circular,
BUT make sure you stay home at least one night to avail yourself of the BBQ
by the pool (two of 'em, four feet deep and a wader for tots) and the
moonrise (it was full during my stay).
And do not miss the sunrise!
One last thing, the waves breaking on the shore can be heard from
bedrooms one and two (not sure about the other two, but guessing yes) and
thats a great way to fall asleep!
little slice of heaven
I know it is overused as a descriptor in the tropics but it is paradise. The location, the amenities, the hospitality. I would recommend great expectations to anyone and will certainly be back myself.
Downers Grove, Illinois
Great place to have everyone together
We have been going to St. John since 1996 and have always had a large group (20 or more). This time we have 10 and Great Expectations was a perfect villa to rent. It was so great to having the group in one villa. It was nice to have the bedrooms off to the sides away from the Great Room. You weren't bothered in the morning if someone wanted to be in the Great Room or kitchen or even by the pool. The views are breathtaking and there was always a nice breeze in the bedroom. The club room was perfect for our single person that wanted privacy. The location from town is perfect and also puts you closer to Coral Bay. Got a quick out of the sign by the pool: No lifeguard, no diving, no snow! Being from Chicago, we laughed about that! In conclusion, if you have a group (and if it is mixed with adults and children), I would definitely recommend this house. The guest house (which we used last minute) was also nice. Great house for a great rental price!
Dallas tX USA
Couldn't have been better
Having stayed at many villas and resorts in the islands, we approaced our stay at Great Expectations with a "well - we will see" attitude. Well, it was all we had hoped for and more. The rooms were perfect and clean. The pool was great. The views fabulous. It all fit nicely into the 'laid back' vibe of St. John.
The villa met everyone's objectives and needs. From lazy hammocks - to tennis court - the entire family could find exactly their place to have fun.
The villa is very well maintained. The beds were comfortable and the kitchen was perfect.
After 8 days - we still were not ready to leave.
Love the sun
Gang of 12 says, "Best Vacation EVER!"
12 of us(ages17-62)descended on Great Expectations for a memorable 8 days celebrating new jobs, graduations, birthdays, and just connecting. The villa allows you to be together but "have your own space" too. The view in every direction is just beautiful and relaxing. The tennis court was in use constantly as were the pools and hot tub. Having dinner together each evening was delightful. The management company was there to greet us at the ferry and the villa was spotless upon arrival--complete with fresh flowers everywhere. Loved the welcome bag and goodies! Be sure to rent a car or you will go broke with taxis. Food is so $$$ at the market...bring as much food with you as you can! We even brought frozen meats and saved a ton! But, on the other hand, rum is 1/2 the price of milk ! We enjoyed every minute and were tempted to go AWOL and stay.
The views were wonderful and the home was very clean. Everything we would need was provided from a well supplied kitchen to beach chairs. Our group enjoyed the basketball and tennis court. The pool was clean and a the water was the perfect temperature. We had a great stay.
First Visit to St. John
Our family, which included children and grandchildren had a wonderful time
and the property met all of our expectations. No one wanted to leave. Great
vacation home for adults and children of all ages. The owner and property
manager were very helpful with our travel planning and getting us settled in
upon our arrival. The property allowed easy access to all of St. John, which is
truly a beautiful island and the beaches are beyond compare to the many we
have visited in other parts of the world.
A great place for families!
St. John's Great Expectations is my family's favorite vacation destination. With
beautiful views, comfortable indoor and outdoor living, and access to amazing
beaches, its hard not to relax in this Caribbean haven. In fact, the only point of
debate among our family is what makes this the "best" spot. For my brother
the tennis courts rule supreme, while my sister can't get enough of relaxing by
the pool. To my mind, there is nothing more enjoyable than waking up to the
Caribbean sunshine and warm tropical air that flows into the breezy
bedrooms. To be sure, everyone in your family with love a getaway to Great
Long Beach Island, NJ
Great home for family fun!
We have spent more than one vacation at Great Expectations and it has always lived up to our "expectations". The home has all the amenities one could ask for and then some! The location is very convenient to Cruz Bay and many great snorkeling areas as well. Chuck and Kristen can't do enough for their tenants and we wish them many, many happy clients.
Pam and Steve
Great Property, Incredible Views!
This is a property with incredible views from every angle. Great pool, family friendly, tennis court. Excellent hospitality! The walking path to the beach being overgrown and basically unusable was a disappointment. Some construction going on next door. All in all, a great property that is highly recommended. Read more
Response from Great Expectations - 06/12/2009
Our apologies for the path to Hart Bay beach being overgrown; it is maintained by the Chocolate Hole landowners association and has since been cleared. The construction of the nearby villa during your 2008 stay is just about finished (landscaping, which should be beautiful, has yet to be done).
Wonderful set up with great breeze and view!
We got married on island of St. John and we and our friends/family
stayed here and a few other villas on the island. Everyone congregated
at this villa b/c it was the nicest. Good balance of view, breeze, good
stereo, decoration, private and shared space. Loved the outdoor
showers!! The pool is nice and the kids all loved it. You'll need a car
to get to the beach but we didn't mind.
The house managers are great - very well organized and considerate.
Los Angeles, CA
My great expectations were exceeded
I wish I could play tennis! Because the tennis court is faultless (pun
intended). Our family had such a relaxing and carefree time, we
wanted to stay forever. The kitchen was fully functional and loaded
with kitchenwares, so we got to cook on many nights of our stay. The
view is breathtaking. We sipped cocktails with our feet in the pool as
we watched the sunset fill the sky with beautiful colors. We also took
trips to the beaches with chairs and coolers the villa had at the ready,
we packed picnic lunches and went snorkeling and saw all kinds of
fish, coral & even a sea turtle!
It's so refreshing to come back from a day at the seaside to shower in
an outdoor, yet private shower and sleep in a comfy bed. Only to
wake up to see the sunrise on Heart Bay. Ah, what a great time we
had... And hope again!
New York, NY
First Rate Villa
We have stayed at GE every year since 2001 and will be returning at the end of this year. It is a first rate property, well maintained, comfortable, secure, and relaxing. The tennis court is a huge plus if you have tennis players. Great room large with large screen TV, and wifi Internet access. The kitchen is well appointed and there is a nice built in outdoor barbecue if you want to cook. The views are spectacular, including wonderful sunrises and sunsets. Bedrooms are air conditioned (but you will likely not need it). There is a small pool (adequate for cooling off but not for exercise swimming) and a separated kiddie pool that works very well with little ones (last year we had 4 children from 1 1/2 to 5). Large freestanding spa. The location is just a few minutes from town, and a short drive to the North Shore beaches (you will definitely need a car). finally, and importantly, the owners are responsive and caring.
Simply lovely location. Good for kids. Can accommodate a large
family. Spacious, well-equipped kitchen.
Great views and wonderful rooms
wonderful spacious rooms; great for couples as 4 are of equal size;
lovely views Read more
Response from Great Expectations - 05/31/2009
Many thanks for taking the time to post a review!
Great Expectations exceeds expectations.
Great Expectations exceeded my expectations. The property is in a great location- unbelievable views and very convenient to town. Rooms are well appointed and very comfortable. Decor is relaxed with a sophisticated Caribbean flair. Outdoor pools and porches were wonderful, lots of places to sit and enjoy the views and the company. Outdoor showers adjoining each room were a treat. The kitchen had everything we needed. Guest services were amazing, we had an issue with the satellite and it was promptly and professionally resolved by friendly staff. Working with the owner, Charles, over email was fantastic, and he went out of the way to make sure we had everything we needed and were prepared for our trip. I would highly recommend Great Expectations. We stayed here surrounding my sister's wedding, and I can't imagine a better choice for a large family to stay together in an intimate, private setting.
excellent tennis, pleasant family rental
This is one of the few rental villas on St. John with a tennis court, and it is probably the very best court on the island: regulation size, well fenced, great surface. (At the St. John Westin the surface is astroturf.) The house is also affordable and huge, great for a family vacation. We had 12 extended family staying there, with the court in use almost constantly.
The views are terrific. Fairly good breezes, lots of seating outside, well equipped kitchens, all was in good repair. Accommodating owners and kind, efficient on-island management.
The only downside is that the swimmers had to get in a car to swim in the Caribbean: though water is near on all sides, access is not easy--wavy and rocky at Hart Bay, closed to nonresidents at Devers Bay. But it's quite a short drive to Klein Bay, Chocolate Hole (currently closed due to construction of a resort) and the North Shore Beaches.
Very highly recommended for groups that enjoy both tennis and beaches!