May 6, 2005 – Simone Palmer is always supporting efforts to improve the quality of life for St. Croix residents, and the quality of visits for tourists.
She is so busy with her efforts in the community one might forget that she, with her partner, Sheryl Smith, runs one of the islands most attractive resorts –Sand Castle on the Beach.
She gives credit to her staff for giving her the opportunity to play a part in the community. She says, "It is not what I am doing. It is what we are doing in being part of this community."
That cooperation between community, staff and Palmer came to the forefront when it came to finding a place to celebrate the graduation of the first class of St. Croix Guardian Angels. It was a natural that Sand Castle on the Beach was selected for the fundraiser.
Simone is active in the St. Croix Anti-Crime Force and Team St. Croix, two groups that helped make the presence of Guardian Angels on St. Croix a reality.
Simone has brought the same passion to helping out in the community that she has brought to making Sand Castle on the Beach, located just south of Frederiksted, one of the premier places to stay on the big Island.
She says that after the partners became owners of the resort on Jan. 3, 2002, "Our first goal was to bring the entire property itself — grounds, buildings, amenities, staff and services onto a level to reflect and match the amazing natural beauty that surrounds us at this beachfront location."
Her pride in what has been accomplished was evident recently as she led a tour of the resort.
Her effort to give friendly customer service was also evident as she greeted just about every guest, inquiring if everything was all right. She says another goal of hers is to "foster the essence of hospitality." They do this at Sand Castle, she says, by caring about details major and minor.
The staff works to cultivate serenity and tranquility in the guests, and allow creativity to be nurtured by the gardens, the art on the walls, the food, and the music, she says.
Sand Castle on the Beach Hotel & Resort has 21 rooms divided into beachfront villas, sea view suites, garden deluxe suites, moderate garden, courtyard villas, and standard accommodations.
Palmer was especially proud of a conference room recently added at the resort. It was the site of a small teacher's conference in April. In October a date is being set for a two-day workshop featuring Peter Stewart, an acupuncturist.
Palmer says the resort embraces a variety of lifestyles in it customers, she says, "Everyone is welcome."
The partners had no resort experience before moving down from the states and taking over Sand Castle, but they did have business experience. Palmer says it was a "readiness to welcome major climactic, cultural and environmental changes" that brought them to St. Croix.
At present, the partners have no plans to do any more expansion. Palmer says they will remain busy "tweaking" what they have right now. And there is always her work in the community.
All the accommodations at Sand Castle have private baths, overhead fans, kitchens or kitchenettes, and air conditioning.
Some of the extra care offered by the staff include, in-season fresh flowers to greet guests along with a complimentary beverage.
Palmer says, "We want to offer genuine warmth to visitors."
You can call the resort at 340-772-1205.
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