Frenchman's Reef and Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort, Morning Star Beach, St. Thomas $$$$
Concierge.com's insider take:
Frenchman's Reef is impossible to miss: The 478-room flagship commands Charlotte Amalie's harbor from the tip of Muhlenfels Point. On busy port days, guests gather on the terraces to watch cruise ships pass in and out of the picturesque bay. The hotel has its own dock, making water sports or sailing excursions a snap; for those who'd rather burn calories browsing the stores, a shopping ferry shuttles guests downtown. The property offers two distinct hotel experiences. Frenchman's Reef, the main hotel, is a bustling, high-end resort; a $48-million renovation, completed in 2011, spruced up the interiors with elegant Caribbean-style furniture and flat-screen TVs and added the kid-friendly open-air Aqua Terra Oceanfront Grill as well as the grown-up–friendly Rum Bar, a swim-up bar at the infinity pool, and an expanded, seven-room spa. A five-minute stroll to the east, the pricier Morning Star part of the resort offers a quieter, more boutique-style experience. Its pastel three-story buildings with condo-type units, free-form pool, pair of tennis courts, Coco Joe's Restaurant, and pan-Latin Havana Blue restaurant are set on an ivory-white beach.