- Park Hyatt St. Kitts – Initial Review and First Impressions
- Introduction: Park Hyatt St. Kitts
- Review: Park Hyatt St. Kitts Transportation & Check-in
- Review: Park Hyatt St. Kitts Sea View Suite
- Review: Park Hyatt St. Kitts Park Executive Suite
- Review: Park Hyatt St. Kitts Gym, Pools, Beach, & Restaurants
- Review: Park Hyatt St. Kitts Miraval Life in Balance Spa
- Park Hyatt St. Kitts Final Thoughts
Getting to St. Kitts
The airport that you’ll land at in St. Kitts is Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport (SKB). There aren’t a ton of flights to get there, but there is award availability on the few routes there are. We flew on American Airlines via Miami. AA also currently has weekly flights from Charlotte and New York JFK on Saturdays only, while Delta flies seasonally from Atlanta and is starting a new route from New York JFK prior to Christmas this year. United Airlines also flies seasonal from Newark, while Air Canada flies seasonally from Toronto.
We were coming from the West Coast, and it was easiest for us to find award availability on AA. The flight from Miami to St. Kitts is about 3 hours, and our Thursday afternoon flight was nearly full. We booked Economy award flights (yes, I do fly economy from time to time) and spent only 15k AA miles per person to get from SNA to SKB, which is a bargain in my books. It costs 10k British Airways Avios to fly from MIA to SKB, so unfortunately that wasn’t a good option for me. Cash options were clocking in at about $900+ for the round trip, so miles was the easy choice.
Immigration was easy – the airport is so small that the only people in line were literally the ones from our plane. The queue wouldn’t really support more than one plane anyway. Visa is granted free on arrival for US passport holders.
Getting from SKB to the Park Hyatt St. Kitts
I’d never been to St. Kitts, nor has anyone that I know personally, so I contacted the hotel to learn about my options for transportation aside from taking a taxi. The concierge, who was extremely helpful both prior to and during my trip, informed me of two options available directly from the hotel:
- Private transfer (maximum three adults or two adults and two children under 12 years) – $180.00 each way
- Shared transfer – $50.00 per person each way
Those prices seemed high, and I read online that it was easy enough to get a taxi from the airport, so I emailed the Concierge back to let her know I was planning on just taking a taxi. She emailed back quickly and said she can book that for me too, so I confirmed with her and provided the flight information and number of people (only me and my wife). She let me know the name of the person and the sign he would be holding.
After we got our luggage and exited the airport, there were several people holding signs with hotel’s and people’s names. One was the name of the taxi company, Alvin Taxi & Tours, who greeted us and asked us to wait on the side while he got his van. It ended up being a private ride for us.
The only downside is that for this arrangement, you must pay the taxi driver directly in cash. It was only $30 for the two of us, and he was helpful in giving a mini tour on the 30 minute drive to the hotel, so I tipped him $5 as well. He (Alvin) does operate a tour that the Concierge also recommended but I didn’t take advantage of. You can make a similar arrangement for the return trip to the airport.
Arrival and Check-in
When our taxi arrived at the open-air entrance, we were greeted by a team of five staff members that were happy to help us with our luggage. I thought that was a bit overkill for just us two, but then another small group of about 5 people arrived just a couple of minutes after us, so they probably were there in preparation for everyone’s arrival.
Since I was the first one to arrive, I got to sit immediately for check-in. The front desk has it’s own room, which is large and has a comfortable seating area that the other group sat at while they waited for us to finish. Check-in was done within a couple of minutes. The one thing different about this hotel is the holding charge they add to your credit card upon arrival. All hotels have a minimal charge for incidentals, usually around $100 or so. The Park Hyatt St. Kitts has a $300 per day holding charge, so for my 4 night trip it came to $1200. Again, it’s just a hold, but I was surprised at the amount. It makes sense given the prices at the resort, something you’ll see in future posts.
After check-in we were whisked away on a golf cart to our room, where our luggage was also arriving at the same time in a separate golf cart.
Getting Around the Resort
This isn’t a normal category for most hotels, but this hotel is built differently. It’s large and there are some hills, so getting around may not always be a walk in the park. There are tons of golf carts around the property, and the staff is almost always happy to give you a ride. Each building also has a phone outside the building that can be used to call for a golf cart, or you can always call from your room phone as well. Here’s a video of a golf cart driving about half the total length of the hotel.
Personally, I thought it was more fun to walk the resort. The landscaping around the property is beautifully done and I’m sure it’ll look even better once they’ve had a chance to mature. There are two ways to walk around the property – one on the main “road” where the golf carts drive, and the other is below the buildings which is closer to sea-level. This is also where the larger pool and a couple of restaurants are.
Going to Nevis
I didn’t plan on going to Nevis island (the large island that the Park Hyatt St. Kitts faces), but several staff members asked if we’d be going there. They all suggested it was a worthwhile trip to take, but unfortunately my wife and I couldn’t make time to make a visit.
If you would like to go, the Park Hyatt offers transportation to Nevis from the Park Hyatt for $60 per person round trip. There are four set times on which the ferry leaves, so you’ll have to inquire at the Concierge to find out the exact times.
The weather during our trip (11/30 to 12/4) was pretty much the same every day: 85F and partly sunny. It’s very much a tropical climate, where it rains for short periods of time and then clears up and becomes bright and sunny. It was humid compared to what we have in Southern California, but not as bad as in Southeast Asian countries like Singapore and Bangkok. It rained very hard with thunderstorms and lightning on our last night there but cleared up quickly that same night.
The golf carts are equipped with a plastic sheet that hangs down the sides to prevent passengers from getting wet. It’s nice to see that they planned for that small detail.