Hi friends! I’m so excited to share my St. Thomas Travel Guide with y’all. This post was highly requested and I got so many questions from y’all while on our trip last week, so I’m going to do my best to have it all in one place for you!
My family has been going to St. Thomas for years now and we absolutely love it. My family has a condo there, so they go often. This time, my parents invited us to join them and we definitely couldn’t turn it down! One of our favorite vacation spots, plus time with my family? Yes and yes. Also, being that it was Harper’s first trip, it was great to have my parents there for a little extra help. We all had such a good time and definitely already missing that gorgeous island. Like I said, I’m going to try to include everything below, but if you have questions on anything I left out, feel free to shoot me an email [firstname.lastname@example.org] :).
Like I mentioned above, my family has been coming for years and staying at The Ritz Carlton. The first time we came, we stayed at the hotel there and fell in love. My parents decided to invest in a condo at The Ritz, and since that first time, we have always stayed in their condo. The property at The Ritz is absolutely gorgeous. It is truly Caribbean paradise.
^Philip and his mini on our balcony!
- There is a hotel side and a condo side, both absolutely gorgeous.
- The Ritz is about 30 minutes from the airport and about 10-15 minutes from downtown Charlotte Amalie.
- The property has several pools [including a stunning infinity pool!], multiple dining options [more on that below!], a gorgeous spa with a seaside cabana, their own private charter boat [The Lady Lynsey], and more.
- The staff has always been incredible and so accommodating. They even provided us with a crib and high chair for Harper in our condo!
- Wifi is available throughout the property and there is also a designated ‘business center’, should you need it.
^Ocean at The Ritz.
^The Ritz grounds were so lush and gorgeous!
My goodness, I could go on and on about the food in St. Thomas. Out of all the times I’ve been, I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad meal. I ate seafood nearly the entire time because I don’t know how you can pass up seafood that fresh! I’ll highlight a few of my favorites below, starting with the meals on The Ritz property —
- Bleuwater – We ate breakfast here a few times as it was just a quick 2-3 minute walk from our room. They have a menu, as well as an absolutely incredible breakfast buffet. This is seriously THE buffet of all buffets. I’m not typically a fan of buffet style meals, but this one changed my mind. They had an omelet bar, fresh breads and pastries, yogurt, cereal, fruit, bacon, eggs, you name it. They even have a ‘bubbly bar’, for an additional $14 you can make mimosas from all their fresh juices! We only did breakfast here this time, but when Philip and I came on our honeymoon, we did a candlelight dinner on the beach, and the food was prepared and served by Bleuwater…it was absolutely amazing.
- Coconut Cove – This little outdoor restaurant is right by the pool on the residence side of the property and was so easy to pop into for lunch. We actually did this several days throughout the week. Super fresh fish…the fish tacos are to die for! So many fun tropical drinks too…the coconut bellini is the best!
- Sails – This is quite similar to coconut cove, about a 5 minute walk towards the hotel side of the property. Equally delicious easy lunch meals, the french fries…I could eat them every day!
- Pesce Italian – This little gem is about a 10 minute ride from The Ritz and this was actually my favorite meal during our trip! It was our first time here, but my parents go each time there are there. Absolutely incredible food. I had a pesto salmon & pasta dish that I still dream about and Philip had a stuffed lobster dish that he talked about for days! If you like italian, highly recommend.
- Caribbean Fish Market – walking distance from The Ritz, basically right next door. Indoor and outdoor and they had live music. Delicious food and a great atmosphere. Even the indoor seats have a view of the beach and ocean.
- Havana Blue – This is a close tie for first place in my book! About a 20 minute drive from The Ritz…located right next to the Marriott Frenchman’s Reef. This restaurant is absolutely stunning. Philip and I also dined here on our honeymoon as our first night out as husband/wife, so we really, REALLY love this place. You cannot beat the ambiance or the views here. Pictures don’t even do it justice! If you are visiting St. Thomas, this one is a must. Also, get the lobster for dinner, absolutely delicious. And the beignets for dessert…I’d eat them every day if I could!
For starters, this trip was obviously done a tad differently than in the past since we now have a baby! So our agenda of course changed a little bit! Philip and I love to go, go, go on trips, but this time we did a little more lounging around the pool, earlier nights, and earlier mornings haha! We did some really fun things though and luckily for us, Harper loved being in the water!
^Magen’s Bay — see full post here for outfit details.
- Pool/Beach – As I mentioned above, The Ritz has gorgeous pools, so we spent a lot of time in and around these! Over on the residence side, they also offer ping pong and other fun games on the lawn, so we played with those as well. The beach is also just steps away from the pool, so that was so convenient.
- Boat – This is probably the activity I got the most questions on during the week! Philip and my dad actually found this and set it up…we booked with Second Wind Luxury Charter and it was amazing! It was just for us, so it was the 5 of us, the captain, and the 2 crew members. They picked us up from The Ritz at 9 am and we didn’t get dropped back off until about 5 pm. So it really is an all-day affair. I typically get pretty nauseous on boats, so I was pretty nervous about this. It had rained heavily that night before so the waters were a bit choppy and there were times I felt a tad sick, but nothing a little Dramamine can’t fix.
- From the moment you walk on the boat, they begin serving food and drinks. They had an entire breakfast prepared and mimosas! Throughout the day comes lunch, snacks, dinner, and dessert. They have a fully stocked bar and the menu was delicious. The chef on-board was amazing.
- The captain allows you to tailor the agenda for the day to your liking, which was great. Because I am prone to seasickness, he picked a few spots to venture to that didn’t involve going too far in rough waters. We went over to Buck Island and snorkeled over there which was amazing. The water was so clear and we saw amazing marine life down there.
- The captain and crew were great, it was a really fun day. I definitely recommend if you’re looking to get out on the water for the day!
- Golf – Philip is a big golfer and always loves to try out the courses when we are on vacation. The course in St. Thomas is Mahogany Run and this was Philip’s second time playing it…he still says this is the prettiest course he has ever played. I didn’t join him this time, but on our honeymoon I went with him and the views on the course are absolutely unreal. Highly recommend if you’re a golfer!
- Spa – The Spa at The Ritz is incredible. It is so serene and peaceful! My parents were so sweet and offered to watch Harper while Philip and I had a couple’s massage, which was so nice. On our honeymoon, we had the couple’s massage in the seaside cabana which is right on the ocean with a gorgeous view and you can relax to the sound of the waves. They offer an array of treatments, definitely the most relaxing part of our trip. It felt great to unwind!
- Beach BBQ – This was Philip’s dream come true! If y’all follow me on snapchat especially [username: kateglapa], you know that Philip is a grilling fool. He absolutely loves to cook and grill, so when he found out about this, my whole family knew we were absolutely doing it! This was really neat actually. It is set up by The Ritz, it’s a private dinner on the beach with gorgeous sunset views. They provide the food [we did steak, fresh fish, and lobster!] and you can hire a chef to cook for you, but Philip of course had it handled! It was such a neat evening and the food was delicious.
- Magen’s Bay – This is known as one of the world’s most beautiful beaches and I have to agree. The water is absolutely gorgeous, so so clear and calm. Philip and I actually went there to shoot photos super early one morning. We left at 6:30…it is about a 30 minute drive from The Ritz. I’ve heard that Magen’s Bay gets so crazy busy, so to go early! When we went, I think there were only about a handful of people there. It was so calm and serene, definitely a must see if you have the time!
- St. John – We go each time we are in St. Thomas and it’s such a neat little island. It has a totally different vibe than St. Thomas…much more quiet and laid back. You catch a ferry in Red Hook [about 10-15 minutes from The Ritz] and the ferry ride over is quick, maybe about 20 minutes or so? St. John has great beach front restaurants [perfect for sunset!], great little bars, and great, unique shopping.
^baby’s first beach!
^Breakfast on the charter boat!
^Lunch on the boat! That coconut crusted shrimp…
^From our BBQ on the beach at The Ritz!
^Early dinner views in St. John.
^A gorgeous sunset in St. John before catching the ferry back to St. Thomas!
Since this is a fashion blog, you know I had to talk a little bit about shopping, ha! Duty-Free shopping is something I always like to take advantage of, especially when I have a big purchase in mind! I picked up a Louis Vuitton bag and a David Yurman bracelet, both at a discounted price, plus no tax.
- Charlotte Amalie – really unique little shops, great for picking up souvenirs. Make sure you check the schedule of the cruise ships, because if a ship or two is in port, that area gets absolutely crazy!
- Yacht Haven Grande – near Charlotte Amalie and home to several luxury shops including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, etc.
- St. John – As I mentioned above, this island has so many neat little shops. Many with local, handmade pieces you can’t find elsewhere.
We absolutely loved our time in St. Thomas and are already looking forward to next year…we told my parents we will be crashing their vacation once again! I hope this guide has been helpful if you are planning a trip to St. Thomas! Please let me know if you have any questions and thank y’all so much for stopping by. Have a great weekend, xo!