Wharfside: Details & Pictures

Rum Hut Chair May 2019We receive a ton of questions here regarding Wharfside Village. People want to know when The Beach Bar and Joe’s Rum Hut will officially reopen. To be honest. I’d like to know too. Unfortunately I do not know much. Here is what I do know.

For starters, when I refer to Wharfside Village, I am referring to a certain section of the waterfront. Wharfside Village is the beachfront area in Cruz Bay where the grey tile is. It stretches from the former Waterfront Bistro space down to The Beach Bar. The area where Pig & Rooster, Freebird, St. John Beach Bum and St. John Spice are located is a different owner. The area where High Tide, Turquoise Turtle, Sotheby’s and Vibe are located is a third owner. Those two parcels are fully open and have been for quite sometime.

Three entities own Wharfside Village. Parcels 4A, 4B and 4C are all separate owners.
Three entities own Wharfside Village. Parcels 4A, 4B and 4C are all separate owners. Parcel 4A has not full reopened since the storms.

So let’s get back to Wharfside Village. It has secured building permits. That’s a good thing. You can see them posted in various areas on the property. It has also received a substantial insurance payout, according to public record. That’s another good thing.

I can say that work has been happening on the property nearly every day since the hurricanes. But the amount of people working is not very large. In my opinion, they need to rev it up. It’s been nearly 21 months since the hurricanes. It’s time we get our waterfront back.

On the positive side, several businesses in that area are open. Pay 2 Park, Island Cork, Bamboo, Now & Zen, Cruz Bay Clothing and Into the Blue are all open. Here are a few pics:

Pay to Park openIsland CorkCruz Bay Clothing

Into the Blue
Into the Blue

NOw and ZenBambooAnd here are a few pics of the area near Joe’s Rum Hut, The Beach Bar and The Parrot Club:
New Rock Wall May 2019Rum Hut Interior May 2019Rum Hut Interior 2 May 2019Beach Bar May 2019Beach Bar doors May 2019So as you can see, work has happened. But not nearly enough. I wish I had better news to share with you all today, but quite honestly, I do not know when these businesses will reopen. All I can say is that I hope it is soon.

19 thoughts on “Wharfside: Details & Pictures”

  1. I had hoped the BB would be open in March when we visited, now I am hoping it will be open by next March! Fingers crossed!

  2. Appreciate the update…what’s funny is if you’d asked me to bet on which STJ bar, restaurant, shop, etc. would be the quickest to come back after the hurricanes, I would have guessed Beach Bar. No such luck. But I am glad they’re doing those happy hours on the beach on Thursdays thru Sunday afternoons I believe.

    Comparatively, you look at White Bay over on JVD and not only are all those beach bars back in business, but I feel like they’ve multiplied.

    • Obviously a bunch of BS being thrown at us for 21 months regarding this area. There in March for 2 weeks and almost nothing happening. I think everyone who visits St. John regularly expected this area to be one of the first to be up and running and it is a sad, disappointing eyesore for people arriving to the island. I, for one, would just appreciate some honesty about what is going on.

  3. I can only imagine the thousands and thousands of people who have since decided to vacation in Mexico, Bahamas because of the lack of commitment the those select bar owners of the food/beverage service have had to support tourism, and instead choose greed. Call it what it is, it isn’t nor was it any city planning issue, it was a hold out. Which left alot of good people of the city holding the bag and pulling the weight. Unfortunately, when you walk off the ferries and you see establisments still busted up with little to no construction going on after nearly 9 months after the storms hit, theres a problem. Those owners and the city legistlature owed it to the people of St John to get that place going. No excuses.

  4. I was on island last week. It was very depressing coming in on the ferry only to see that area still wrecked. John Smith, I couldn’t agree with you more. There was no activity there all week, nor was beach bar open any day between 5/9 -5/16. I was told by an insider that the owner of that “parcel” is going through a “nasty divorce” and that my fellow St John lovers is why there is no progress being made at Wharfside Village.

  5. Fingers crossed they get business back up and running, especially since the other two sections seem to be in “full swing” and as someone else mentioned, JVD seems to have even expanded. It is a little curious as to why the Beach Bar hasn’t updated their website since January it looks like and it seems to be the same case with Joe’s rum hut. On Facebook BB is only posting about their happy hours on the beach but no updates on how construction is going. Joe’s is pretty quiet on FB. It’s like they are hiding something? I don’t know, if I were a business trying to rebuild I would want to keep fans of my establishment up to date. I feel as if I would post weekly reports or something. The only feedback I have seen is from the owner of the BB sarcastically replying to some Trip Advisor posts, but still no clues left as to an estimated opening date. Seems like a different vibe.

    I do have a question for News of St. John – have you heard if BB is planning on leaving the stage up after they are opened? Was that something all businesses agreed upon, or just something the BB decided to do?

    • From what I have heard, it is up there temporarily until the entire place reopens.

      I agree that updates should be posted.

      • Thank you for the info on the stage. I am also wondering what happened with all the donations made directly to Beach Bar – $25 donation = a shirt, $5 = a bracelet … etc. “Become a part of The Beach Bar Team by supporting relief efforts on St. John. We will donate the proceeds of your purchase to support local efforts here on St. John. The Beach Bar has a history of contributing to local charities in a big way. ”

        Do you by chance have any info on the charities and relief efforts they assisted with? Thinking positive that maybe they’ve spent a lot of time helping with “relief” efforts? You know glass half full? Ugh a little frustrating that the public is left in the dark especially for those who have tried to help from abroad. You would hope to see more progress.

        • Laney, We’ve donated all of the money generated for relief, plus matching funds from us and our team, to Island Health & Wellness, Love City Community Network, and St John Cancer Fund.

  6. I bet they will have it ready by winter for the busy season or break a leg trying. Thanks for the update and please keep them coming when you can!

  7. It’s a shame, really that personal greed has delayed what is an important part of St John. I expect it will be Christmas or Jan 1st, but I’ve guessed wrong 3 other times. Having been through the hurricane, and been watching closely, there seems to be little dedication to getting this back after the millions of dollars made over the last decades and thousands of patrons. I really is sad and I hope the other bars keep their business high when these 2 reopen. They need a wake up call and hopefully everyone will not rush to support them and give them a taste of what it is like to wait. It’s very obvious the “reasons” (excuses) for the delays are…..

  8. We returned today, after 2 weeks on island and have to agree with others about the slow pace of recovery in that section of Wharfside. Heard an occasional hammer but not enough. I do not portend to know all of the obstacles but one thing I’m sure of, these places are losing tons of money. Thought sure they would be up and running by now. I miss my Bushwackers!

    • We all thought they’re be up and running by now. It’s a shame. I feel so badly for the owners of The Beach Bar because they desperately want to be open.

  9. Funny how they took down the webcam earlier this year portending to do that since construction was ramping up. It would seem it was actually done so the world couldn’t continue to watch daily the “lack of progress” and occasionally bug Reed about it on TA or FB. We were there the first 2 weeks of Dec. 2018 and the only progress we saw was to construct a cinder block wall (street-side) at BB and pour some concrete. Zero work at Joe’s Rum Hut. No real bustle of activity at all. Now I honestly wonder if they will still be closed when we return for the first 2 weeks of this coming December. Fortunately there are plenty of other places to drink and dine – but it is a constant reminder as we walk by daily from Gallows Point into Cruz Bay.

  10. This is really sad & says a lot about the “owner” of the property…He clearly was/is a fake. It’s too bad an amazing place for all of the great people of St John has been ruined by a single individual. Had nothing to do with the storm…Kudos to the other bars/restaurants picking up the slack!! Clearly the “storm” was an excuse or another attempted corruption for one, but an opportunity to make the island better for others! No storm will stop the spirit of St John & the amazing peopleof USVI’S!!!

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