What is an Eco-Tent like?

by julie swanson

view-from-boardwalk-1Simply amazing! It was like playing Tarzan and Jane for a week, only a bit more civilized. Steve and I just got back from a wonderful vacation on St. John USVI where we celebrated our 25th Anniversary at the Concordia Eco-Resort (http://www.concordiaeco-resort.com/). We stayed in a eco-tent which is like a treehouse of sorts, a deluxe tent on stilts that puts you up off the ground so you can see over the treetops to the amazing panoramic view of the Caribbean and assorted islands and the Ram’s Head peninsula.

It’s a post and beam type structure with heavy duty canvas stretched over it for the roof and walls, windows you can zip open/closed, and deck board flooring. Simple and ‘green’ (a solar-heated shower, solar-powered electricity), it was airy, clean, and comfortable, with all the basic necessities: a small refrigerator, two-burner propane stove top, sink, dishes, utensils, pots, linens, beds with mattresses, toilet, table-and-chairs on the deck… Below is a pictorial tour of our P14 unit in Concordia:

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The premium eco-tents look like this (this is not the unit we stayed in; ours was one of the four lowest on the slope, looking down not on the roofs of other eco-tents but on nothing but nature). You can see the solar panel hanging at a slant from the porch/deck.

You parked high above and walked down steps to get to our eco-tent, unit P14, one of the two lowest units, which were still very high (hundreds of feet about the water below).

We parked high above and walked down steps to get to our eco-tent, unit P14, which was still hundreds of feet about the water and land below. Straight in front of us, the view was of the southern-most tip of St. John, Ram’s Head. To the left of Ram’s Head we looked down on the pounding surf of Drunk Bay, and to the right Salt Pond Bay, where there’a a tranquil sand beach and good snorkeling. The small brown body of water in Ram’s Head peninsula is Salt Pond.

A better look at our view to the left side of Ram’s Head, Drunk Bay (Steve going down the steps to our eco-tent).

You walked down the steps and into the entryway of the eco-tent. To the right is the bathroom area, to the left is the main tent living quarters.

You walked down the steps and into the entryway of the eco-tent. To the left, a door to the main living quarters, to the right, the door to the bathroom area.

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Every room with a view!

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The main room/floor, with 3 twin beds and a kitchen (not visible, to the left); the ladder up to the loft with two more twin mattresses in it that can be pushed together to make a king; and a door out to the deck.

Steve hanging beach towels on the deck clothesline to dry in the sun and wind.

Steve hanging beach towels on the deck clothesline to dry in the sun and wind.

Our messy and very basic little kitchen. Notice the grey box of the fridge, basically a solar-powered electric cooler.

Our messy and very basic little kitchen. Not visible just to the left, the small fridge, the same shape and size as a large cooler with a lid that lifts up.

Looking up at the Concordia Eco-Resort from Drunk Bay; our eco-tent is the second one from the right on the bottom.

Looking up at the Concordia Eco-Resort from Drunk Bay; our eco-tent (premium eco-tent P14 in case you are looking to reserve a good unit there) is the second one from the right on the bottom.

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Steve taking a picture of Concordia from Salt Pond Bay.

Oh, and by the way, the Concordia Eco-Resort has what they call an outdoor "cafe" right on its grounds, but I wouldn't call the Concordia Cafe a cafe. It's a very good sit-down restaurant where you are served and can choose appetizers, entrees, desserts and drinks/cocktails from a menu with a delicious daily special. We ate there three nights and had great meals each time. Great sunset views as you're eating, too.

Oh, and by the way, the Concordia Eco-Resort has what they call an outdoor “cafe” right on its grounds, but I wouldn’t call Cafe Concordia a cafe. It’s a very good sit-down restaurant where you’re served and can choose appetizers, entrees, desserts, and drinks/cocktails from a menu with a delicious daily special. We ate there three nights and had great meals each time. Great breezes and sunset views, and the staff people at Concordia are really friendly and helpful, too.

 

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