About the property
- Villa2885 sqft
- Half Baths1
- Minimum Stay6 nights
Villa, 3 Bedrooms, 4.5 Baths, (Sleeps 6) --Cot for additional child.
Island Horizons sits on the flank of Bordeaux Mountain on St. John, one of the loveliest islands in the Caribbean. It is centrally located 12 minutes from St. John's fabulous North Shore beaches, 12 from the quieter South Shore and also from the secluded East End beaches. 9 miles from Cruz Bay. From its two verandas almost 700ft/ 200+ m above the sea, the view extends from the waters of Coral Bay across St. John's East End and down the Drake Channel to Virgin Gorda 40 miles away. The islands seem to float between sky and sea in a succession of horizons.
Island Horizons is a bright and beautiful villa that was specially designed to optimize this spectacular vista from the two 62 ft/20 m covered verandas and every room in the house ... as well as from the secluded pool and its adjacent sundeck. You can lay in bed admiring the view from the two air-conditioned bedrooms at either end of the villa's main floor -- one queen and the other with twin beds that can make up into a king. Both feature sliding glass doors opening onto the veranda and have an attached bathroom with large tile/stone shower. The great room at the center of the main floor features three sets of sliding glass doors opening onto the veranda and the island horizons beyond. It contains a well-equipped gourmet kitchen, living and dining areas and a powder room. The large outside gas grill will delight the chef and dining on the veranda overlooking the sea and island horizons will leave all with an enduring memory.
A covered stairway leads to the second level and a queen bedroom suite with its own bathroom and sitting room. It offers the same great bedside view and sliding glass doors that open onto a second 62 ft/ 20 m veranda. Finally, the pool deck provides the same spectacular views from the secluded pool and sundeck. The covered shaded area of the deck offers shelter from the sun while the sundeck surrounded with colorful tropical gardens is ideal for sunbathers. Island inspired murals enhance the pool deck.
The villa is very private and the salt pool very secluded, surrounded with colorful tropical gardens.
Marie-France and Ed Smith
- Response rate:
- Response time:
- within a few hours
- english, french, german
- Calendar last updated:
- Apr 22, 2018
About Marie-France and Ed Smith
Your hosts are Marie-France and Ed Smith. Ed's a retired Navy Captain and Marie-France, a native of France, is a retired university lecturer -- in French of course. You'll see some of Ed's original paintings throughout the villa and several island inspired murals on the pool deck. They fell in love with St. John during a vacation with their two young children in 1992 and carried that awesome attraction into finding one of the most beautiful spots on the island and then constructing Island Horizons Villa in 2005-7. They hope that you too will be captivated by St. John and Island Horizons and join the ranks of their pampered repeat guests...
Marie-France and Ed Smith purchased this Villa in 2007
Why Marie-France and Ed Smith chose Estate Carolina
St. John is a unique blend of a small town (population only 4,300), laid back Caribbean ambiance, and a National Park with spectacular scenery both above and below the waves. The Smiths managed to find a particularly spectacular site for Island Horizons some 700 feet/ 200+ meters above the Caribbean with a view stretching all the way down the Drake Channel to Virgin Gorda more than 30 miles away. A view that they and you will never forget.
What makes this Villa unique
Island Horizons combines all of the amenities of a well equipped villa with a view so magnificent that it was featured in an article about St. John in 'Caribbean Travel + Life' magazine in December 2008. Two 62 foot covered verandas take full advantage of the view which is also to be seen from each room -- and the secluded salt-water pool.
Pool / Spa
Local Services & Businesses
Sports & Adventure Activities
A week in a tropical paradise
We had the most wonderful stay at the beautiful Island Horizons villa in Coral Bay. This well-appointed villa overlooked Coral Bay and the BVI’s beyond. There was a constant light breeze that kept us cool and the mosquitoes at bay. In fact, we never encountered even one mosquito at Island Horizons.
The location was perfect for us. Away from the bustle of Cruz Bay and easy access to several great snorkeling beaches. We snorkeled every day and saw so many beautiful corals and fish and turtles that I know my grandsons will always remember the experience.
Our plane was late in arriving and so we couldn’t stock up on provisions ahead of time just barely catching the last ferry to St. Johns. No worries though, the Coral Bay Dolphin Market by Aqua Bistro restaurant was open late and we could get coffee and other supplies at that surprising market. The Island Horizon’s on-island contact patiently accepted a few frantic calls from us as we maneuvered the roads in the dark. She provided great directions and support and we were so happy to have someone to guide us to our destination. She was the first of so many lovely people we encountered on St. Johns.
My grandsons and I enjoyed the pool. Everyone enjoyed the hammock, and we all were happy to come back to beautiful Island Horizons at the end of the day. The beds were so comfortable, the indoor and outdoor living areas were perfect for our family of 5, and the kitchen was our morning and evening gathering place as we made coffee/tea (am) and cocktails (pm).
On our last two nights, our grandsons ages 13 and 15, our daughter, my husband and I watched Harry Potter DVD's. It was relaxing and fun since we hadn't seen those movies for several years. Just another example of your well-stocked home. We also used the coolers and chairs. Thank you for having them be available to us!
Lastly, I so enjoyed Ed's art work. He is so talented and has captured the colors and vibes of this beautiful place on his canvases and tiles. I spent many moments admiring his paintings/tiles.
Our week is over and we are safely home and recounting the wonderful memories of Island Horizons and St. Johns. We hope to come back some day. In the meantime, we'll think of Island Horizons with fondness.
Away From It All at Island Horizons
There were five of us who stayed at Island Horizons for 10 glorious days. We were met at the villa by its owners, Ed and Marie-France, who graciously showed us around the house and explained certain workings. Ed's artwork is extensive throughout the villa, and he has captured the essence of St. John with his talent.
The house is perched on a steep hillside, and is approached from above. The uppermost level has 2 bedrooms, ensuite, at either end, with the kitchen, inside dining area and living room situated in between. There is also a nice dining area located just outside on the covered upper terrace, along with a gas grill. All appliances, including washer, dryer and dishwasher, were in perfect working condition.
On the next level, below via outside staircase, is another ensuite bedroom, this one having its own little sitting area and coffeemaker, with a full length terrace providing lounge chairs and a hammock.
Continuing down the outside stairwell brings one to the pool terrace, with lounge chairs for basking in the sun or sitting in the shade.
All three levels provide outstanding, breathtaking views of Coral Bay and the BVI chain to Virgin Gorda. It is a special day to awaken to the beautiful sunrise and end the day gazing at the "reverse sunset". The full Snow Moon occurred during our visit, and the sight of the moonlight across the water was stunning.
The main road to the villa is up a fairly steep well maintained road, Rte 108. The road leading from 108 to IH is very steep, and 4WD is a MUST!!!! Your initial undertaking of this drive is a bit intimidating, but once it is accomplished, it becomes moot. There is plenty of designated parking for the villa.
There is a substantial variety of restaurants nearby, as well as small markets which are quite well stocked, especially Dolphin at the bottom of the hill at Aqua Bistro. North Shore beaches are within 12 minutes drive. The villa provides beach chairs and towels, as well as coolers.
We feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to meet Marie-France and Ed, and thank them for opening their beautiful home to us who need an escape from winter.
Thank you for the great review. We are delighted that you fully enjoyed your stay at Island Horizons.
I should start the review with the negative because there isn’t much. The “town” of Coral Bay is not really a town, but a few widely spaced shops and bars. This is not a problem; just don’t expect to wander through town at night. The other item is even thought the roads on St John are exciting they have nothing on the driveway into Island Horizons. Most of it is paved, but it is easily steeper than anything else I have ever driven on. The house did have a nice flat place to park which helped.
For the good: The house was lovely, very clean, comfortable, and stocked with anything we could need. However that was all lost in the truly outstanding feature of the house and that was the view. One of my favorite parts of the day was sitting up on the porch watching the light change over the ocean and the islands. You can easily see down the whole BVI chain. It was outstanding. I think my teenage daughter took half her pictures from the holiday off the porch.
After a hard day of hiking or snorkeling there is something to be said for mixing yourself a Pain Killer and stretching out on a lounge chair or the hammock to watch the lights on the islands slowly turn on.
You could sit and enjoy the view all day....
My family and I (all adults) thoroughly enjoyed our stay at "Island Horizons". The house was very comfortable and well equipped with all you need in a vacation home. The amazing views from the living room, bedrooms and veranda were breathtaking. The pool was nice for a float or dip after a hot day at the beach. We snorkeled daily at one of the many beaches about 20 minutes away. If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle and have a relaxing vacation this is your place.
You cannot walk to town easily as the road is very steep and narrow and a couple miles down. Not much there anyway and several places closed as we were getting into the off season. Those establishments open were very accommodating. We were very glad that we rented the All-Wheel Drive Jeep as recommended, our neighbor had not and could not get up the driveway to the main road.
Overall a wonderful place and I would happily return. It was a memorable vacation not just because of the great outings but also this amazing place we would come home to and savor each day!
We left St. John on Saturday and are already wishing that we were back there. Island Horizons was the perfect home away from home with the added bonus of having the most amazing views that we have ever seen. When we first walked in the door and saw the breathtaking views, we were in awe of the beauty of St. John and felt extremely lucky to have found Island Horizons.
Our first visit to St. John was more than 12 years ago. At that time, we stayed at The Westin in Great Cruz Bay. We only had a car for one day at that time, so we didn't spend more than an hour on the Coral Bay side of the Island; now that we have stayed in Island Horizons, we are hooked and hopefully will always stay there when we are "on island".
The owners of Island Horizons have thought of everything when providing for their guests' needs. From the beach chairs and coolers, to the well stocked kitchen, there was nothing that we needed that we couldn't find in the house.
Although we did stay in and grill during 2 of our nights there, we also went to some of the wonderful restaurants that were nearby.
I truly believe that our week in Island Horizons gave us the slice of "paradise" that we were looking for during this much needed vacation.
An honest review
The view from this home is one of the best on the island. The bedrooms are situated is such a way that the sunrise and bay are literally viewable from bed. You can see Tortola and several neighboring islands as well as the sailboats coming in and out of Coral Bay. The bathrooms are also done well with travertine tile showers. In general the house is nicely decorated. One thing that potential visitors should know is that if you plan on staying in any rental overlooking the bay you will probably hear noise from the bay at some point. Coral Bay is much quieter than Cruz Bay! Having said that you will hear the band playing down at the bar if you are sitting on the porch at this home. If the wind is blowing in from the east the mountains act like an amphitheater. There are also two other homes quite close to this property. On two occasions we had rowdy neighbors. We had no major issue with this as the bar noise quiets early and there's always the option of running the air conditioner to drown out the noise. We wish we could give this rental 5 stars. A few things kept us from doing that. The beds and pillows are super hard. No amount of fluffing was going to help the pillows. The same goes for the chair cushions on all of the outdoor furniture. With the amazing views from the porches we wanted to sit for more than 10 minutes enjoying and soaking it all in. We ended up using throw pillows to sit on. The pool was definitely a disappointment. It was freezing the entire time of our stay. Because of the location of the house there is very little sun that shines on the pool for heat and unfortunately the pool is not heated. I would not consider the pool as an amenity. One final critique is with the kitchen supplies. We have rented many homes and there seemed to be a lack of items...not coffee makers, they have 3! But there were no large lidded boil pots or lidded sauce pan. On the positive side the washer and dryer were great and having a clothesline outside was nice. Beach towels, chairs, mats and an umbrella were helpful. Extra linens and pillows were nice. We really enjoyed the portable ipod player. Oh and this place was very CLEAN! Having access to a property manager is always a perk and even thought we never had to take advantage of it, that is something good to have. Would we stay here again? Yes.
We encourage guest comments and particularly appreciate your detailed inputs to help us continue to improve Island Horizons. As you can understand improvements often involve compromises. For example, many of our guests (especially those with back problems) have asked firm mattresses and others require hypoallergenic pillows which tend to be harder. While we cannot do much about the mattresses, we can try in future to provide additional softer pillows on the linen shelves in the bedroom closets. Likewise, the cushions on the veranda dining chairs are a trade off between thinner cushions that dry fast after rain squalls and thicker cushions that take longer to dry. Our compromise was to provide chaise lounges with thick cushions on the veranda.
The pool is another compromise. In winter it is cool --around 70 deg or about the same as New York beaches in the summer -- whereas in summer it is about 80 deg. We would have loved to heat the pool in winter but doing so on St John would be prohibitively expensive and require higher rents.
We will check into the pots in the kitchen. There should be a large "lobster pot" with cover and colander on its side in the lower cabinet to the right of the stove -- too big to put right side up. There should also be two saucepans with covers under the stove or in the deep lower cabinet on the left as well as a crock pot in one of the upper cabinets. If any of them are gone, we will of course replace them.
We look forward to welcoming you back to Island Horizons!
Island Horizons is centrally located 12 minutes drive to St. John's North Shore Beaches, and the same to the less visited South Shore Beaches and the more secluded East End Beaches. So you have some of the most beautiful beaches in the Virgin Islands National Park -- and the world -- just minutes away.
Additional information about rental rates
Rates for Low and Peak season are for 2 guests. Additional guests add $59 a night per guest. Villa sleeps 6 but for a nominal fee can accommodate 1 or 2 additional children with cot and air mattress. We welcome children age 5 and older- A deposit of 50% is due at the time of booking. The balance along with $800.00 security deposit is due 60 days before arrival.