The Buccaneer on St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands has become one of the Caribbean's landmark resorts and one of the strongest ever built, as it has weathered severe storms and served as a refuge after hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017.
Elizabeth Armstrong, the third-generation owner, recently announced that the resort has partnered with Wyndham Hotels & Resorts' Trademark Collection, the first time the resort has affiliated with a major hotel brand.
Armstrong said that the current ownership, management and staff will remain in place, but the resort will gain access to the 86 million Wyndham Rewards members via the brand's reservation system.
According to Wyndham, the Trademark Collection of hotels around the world boast three common attributes: character; charm, and individuality. The collection is geared to owners who are passionate about upholding their hotels' independent spirit. "The properties in the collection are designed for everyday travelers seeking distinctive, attainable accommodations in sought-after destinations," a Wyndham spokesperson said.
"We're very excited about the opportunities for growth with the increased reach and brand assurance to new markets," Armstrong said.
"The soft-brand option is a perfect fit for both the resort and the long-term growth of the Buccaneer resort product, while protecting the historic and unique nature of the resort," she said.
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The transition to the Trademark Collection by Wyndham will be completed over the next several months.
The Buccaneer was opened as an 11-room inn by the Armstrong family in 1947, but the property's history goes much further back. It dates to the 1650s, when the first building was constructed by a Knight of Malta and later was home to Danish Governor Christian Leberecht von Prock in the 1700s.
The Armstrong family purchased the 340-acre estate in 1922 as a cattle ranch before converting it to an inn.
Today, 138 guestrooms are spread throughout the estate, with hilltop villas and rooms with expansive terraces overlooking the ocean. An 18-hole golf course, eight tennis courts, three beaches, two pools and a watersports center give guests plenty of ways to stay active, while the full-service spa and seven restaurants and bars offer the chance to unwind and indulge.
Historical features include a sugar mill from the early 1700s that dominates the entrance; the Cotton House that was used in the early 1900s when cotton replaced sugar as the Virgin Islands' primary crop; and the Hamilton Wing, rumored to have been Alexander Hamilton's home during his time on St. Croix.
Rates start at $428 per night, double for June arrivals. The resort has a variety of packages with discounts and special offerings.