Caneel guardhouse: to keep ‘em in or out?

There are lots of projects underway at Caneel Bay

Near the Equator restaurant, restoration of an old plantation house continues.  Meanwhile, out at the entrance, an impressive new structure is being built.

The entrance to Caneel has had a small entry building for many years.  More often than not, no one was on duty.  If someone was, they were courteous and friendly when, as an outsider, you might arrive to visit the beach bar and responsibly use the beach at the resort.

Now, it looks like they're maybe getting serious about security.  The project underway looks like there will be a main building between entry and exit roads, with small structures on either side of those roads, too.  The architecture is island traditional. 

Let’s hope that when it’s open the Resort’s welcome and open attitude persists, despite the “gated community” look it will give.

10 thoughts on “Caneel guardhouse: to keep ‘em in or out?”

  1. We always hang out at Caneel for a few days when on St. John. We buy items in the gift shop and usually have a bite to eat at their restaurant. Sure hope this isn’t a problem. Do you think they will “screen” taxis too (coming from the Westin)?

  2. I think this is more likely a DHS requirement for having a ferry wharf. If the secure the only entry to the property (keep quiet about the Lindt Point Trail!!) then they get to keep their ferry. The other option was probably one of those real nice security cages, like the one in town.
    Cheers, RickG

  3. A few years back we rented a dingy and stopped at Caneel. We were treated rather rudely and we were certainly not unruly at all.
    As soon as we pulled up we were pretty much asked to leave without actually being asked to leave by someone who worked at the resort.
    I can’t remember the exact verbage but I remember being very put off by that stop. Luckily the rest of the day was splendid!

  4. Remember:
    Caneel Bay Resort is run by people from New York City both marketing/PR. The regional Rosewwod manager is there as well who is above the marketing and local people including Cinnamon Bay Campground.
    The apparent mindset is exactly a gated community given the NYC perspective mixed with current management on property.
    The entire “feel” of Caneel is unreal, and as the old saying goes…if tyhe hjead of the fish is rotten, the body is not far behind.

  5. This item is not a criticism of Caneel.
    It’s just more change; a guardhouse done in Glen Speer-style stonework is certainly more attractive than a wooden parking-lot-type toll booth which it will replace.
    As for Caneel … do not forget it is the island’s largest employer. Its facilities are made available to charity functions several times a year. It welcomes one and all to round-robin tennis twice a week.
    The beautiful beach, which gets sun later than anywhere else on island, is also open for use because of the requirement for the public to be able to access all beaches.
    In my 20+ years, I have never been made to feel unwelcome there. Caneel is an old-time, luxury resort. It is not a 24/7-activity cruise ship.
    But, yes, I also call it the “Home of the $40 hamburger,” which is what lunch costs the two of us (with a beer or Pina Colada). That doesn’t mean I think its overpriced. The food, the drink, the beach, the people, the grounds … worth it.

  6. With wholehearted agreement, I echo Frank’s closing comment about Caneel: “The food, the drink, the beach, the people, the grounds … worth it.”
    Without a doubt, Caneel Bay is a gem of the Caribbean — and I’m grateful that the resort continues to preserve an atmosphere which, true to their word, “invites you to ‘disconnect’ in pristine natural surroundings and low-key luxury. The resort … remains faithful to the vision of founder Laurance Rockefeller and his reverence for the environment … purposefully absent of modern glitz, digital distractions and the furious pace of the world at home.”
    Long live Caneel Bay and the wonderful people who comprise the heart, soul and backbone of the resort’s staff — reflecting and enhancing the sparkle of one very blessed place.

  7. It will take much more than a new front guard station and elimination of the Sunday buffet for me not to always wish I were in Caneel Bay.

  8. There was an article in the Wall Street Journal recently that indicated that Caneel Bay would be taken over by the Nat’l Parks Dept.within the next few years. I suspect the gates may have some connection to do with that in the future.

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