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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Go Green in St. John

Ecoconscious hotels and locally sourced menus have added to the sustainable allure of this island, nearly two thirds of which is protected national parkland.

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1. Where to Stay


One of the tents overlooking Salt Pond Bay at Estate Concordia.   

Surround yourself with nature at Caneel Bay (from $550), a resort inside the Virgin Islands National Park. Founded in 1956 by conservationist Laurance Rockefeller, the 170-acre property boasts seven beaches, eleven tennis courts, and a wellness center with meditation sessions led by Jan Kinder, a student of Deepak Chopra. Mid-century cottages outfitted with bamboo furniture and four-poster beds are spread throughout, but book one on Scotts Beach to stay steps from the water.

Bring a flashlight for nighttime rambles to Salt Pond Bay at Estate Concordia, a remote, sustainable hillside resort on the far eastern end of St. John. You can sleep in a tent, but you’ll find more comfort in one of eight solar-paneled ecostudios (from $115; accommodates four), where the countertops are made from recycled beer and wine bottles and there are no in-room televisions or phones. Book a unit in building A for uninterrupted water views and a screen door that lets the trade winds in and keeps mosquitoes out.

Sleep within walking distance of everything you need at the newly opened Cruz Bay Boutique Hotel (from $105), located near the ferry dock as well as the town’s shops and restaurants. All six suites are modest but comfortable, and hosts David and Denise provide breakfast (oatmeal, yogurt, mango bread) and tips on the best beaches. Light sleepers should avoid room 4, which faces a nightspot that occasionally hosts live music acts that last until 4 a.m.


Published on Apr 7, 2011 as a web exclusive.

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