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What to expect (based on 4334 reviews):

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    5 most recent TripAdvisor reviews:

    Mostly good, with a couple of bumps

    Reviewed by Bos11(Massachusetts) on Oct 21, 2014

    The resort was gorgeous,but large! We stayed in the newer side in a concierge suite. The room was nice, with a full bar, largge flat screen tv and comfortable bed. The balcony was very small, but the...

    The resort was gorgeous,but large! We stayed in the newer side in a concierge suite. The room was nice, with a full bar, largge flat screen tv and comfortable bed. The balcony was very small, but the bathroom had a walk in shower and two sinks. Food: We ate in Eleanors, food was a little dry. OK Corral: Food was pretty good although when I asked for a Cappucino, the waitress looked a bit put out. Bayside was good for dinner steak was good cut of meat and my wife said her duck was excellent marios: The antipasto bar was really good, but my steak was mostly fat and my wifes Salmon was raw in the middle...sent it back and it came back inedible. For breakfast all were ok with Eleanors having ala carte. The large pool was fine and we never had a problem getting chairs or shade. The beach was beautiful. We would walk from the pool to have a dip and return afterwards. We were surprised that after reading the reviews we were never bothered at the beach by the vendors. Once in a while someone would ask us to look at thier stuff. We were never pressured or felt intruded upon. We actually bought some jewelery and souvenirs from the beach vendors. The staff was by and large friendly. We had a problem 2 days in a row with a watersports person. This young man was rude and really seemed miserable! He wore no name tag or we would have complained. He was saved by Troy, who took us out on a Hobie Cat after the young man told us to come back later. This is our second Sandals ( Whitehouse) in 2007. Not sure if it is worth the extra $$ We have been to the Dominican a couple of times and it is comparable...at a lower price.

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    Antigua Sandals

    Reviewed by alvi87uk(Swindon, United Kingdom) on Oct 21, 2014

    we had a fantastic holiday here despite our last day when hurricane blew in. We thought this might cause problems for staff however they pulled together and made sure we were all fed well and looked...

    we had a fantastic holiday here despite our last day when hurricane blew in. We thought this might cause problems for staff however they pulled together and made sure we were all fed well and looked after by giving regular updates and communicating clearly about what was happening. We ended up having to stay and extra night and Sandals covered this cost. On our last night we met the GM who was collecting glasses outside of the Drunken Duck pub and although he looked tired was still upbeat and stopped for a chat. I can see why the staff there are so friendly and chatty if this man is what they have to aspire to. All of the staff we spoke to had been in work for many hours over their regular hours and some had damage in their homes but still they made it to work and continued doing their jobs with gusto - and a little dance and song thrown in for good measure. I have to say we will return there as the impression it made on us will make it hard to go elsewhere. Food was fantastic, accommodation also great but the over-riding feeling we left with was the staff and just how great they were to be around - thank you all.

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    A little something for everyone. Loved it!

    Reviewed by k9hannibal(Austin, Texas) on Oct 21, 2014

    My boyfriend and I stayed Oct 8-14, 2014. It was our first trip to a Sandals after many years of dreaming! Many reviews I read prior to leaving for the trip were pretty accurate. I will try to avoid...

    My boyfriend and I stayed Oct 8-14, 2014. It was our first trip to a Sandals after many years of dreaming! Many reviews I read prior to leaving for the trip were pretty accurate. I will try to avoid redundancy. I'll try to see if I can add something new. AIRPORT: New terminal still under construction. Tiny. Cute. Supposedly done next year sometime in the summer. No Sandals lounge but only an outdoor desk. Waited in line for the shuttle less than 5 minutes. Staff not overly friendly there. "Your name?" and "Wait here" was about it. Didn't bother me too much, as I wasn't at the resort yet and very tired from a ridiculous 24 hour trip just getting to the island due to flight schedules (not Sandals issue). Just wanted to get there and really see what Sandals was all about. SHUTTLE: Drivers are not Sandlas employees, we did tip them. They must contract out or something. Drive was no more than 15 minutes tops. We were in a large group, felt like a sardine. No big deal, I'm not spending the vacation in the cab with them. It's 10 minutes of your life. ARRIVAL TO HOTEL: Welcomed with cool towels to wipe grubby airline hands. We identified our bags and they were whisked away so keep anything you personally want to hang onto on your lap in the shuttle. We were promptly taken to Concierge office (we stayed on Carribean side) to check in, leave a credit card, etc. 3 couples already there enjoying Champagne. We sat several minutes to be waited on and finally offered champagne, too. That was better. Now vacation had officially started! Room not ready for approx 30 more minutes (check in is 3 pm) and we were shown to a restaurant where we ate and gawked at the perfect beach! We then went back to Concierge office and were promptly shown to our room and got a swift overview of the room by the staff and our bags followed quickly. ROOM: We emptied our bags into the dresser and stashed bags in the closet. Room seemed as advertised. I did not scrutinize down to the tiniest detail. We were on the very end of the resort room 112. Carribean Grande Luxe Honeymoon Beachfront Walkout. I was told by an online Sandals associate the only difference between that room and the similarly named one that is not the "honeymoon" is the color of decor. Our furniture was mostly the light grey beach washed look and not dark mahogany. I liked it. Nice view of the yard and beach. Stocked bar. TV worked great. Satellite. AC worked but not ice cold. I thought it felt fine. Cold enough to cool off from the heat. Heavy covers at night to stay warm, almost too warm some nights. Bed very comfy and squishy feather pillows. I saw one dead bug in the corner. I left it there and didn't pitch a fit. A few mosquitos would fly in when we opened the door from time to time. No other problems. BATHROOM: One sink. Big counter. Shower and tub. Do note that the shower is a removable "rainfall" shower head, nice but was a pain when it splashed off you as there is no shower curtain, only a half glass wall. The floor was like a lake after a good long shower from splashes. We used most our towels to dry the floor. I wasn't griping as at least we had water as I have read a few reviews where that had been a problem off and on. The last day with the storm, and after the storm (see below), we had no hot water and that was a little frustrating, but we had water! :) MAID SERVICE: Missed turn down service a few nights, had to ask for towels several times from the shower situation. But when the room was cleaned it was done well. Doesn't bother me as I don't mind the bed not being made, but I did expect that to be done every single day for the price. Brochure says we are supposed to receive that. SPECIAL OCCASSIONS: When we were taken to eat before going to our room, a spa employee took us and gave us the spa sales shpeel and told my boyfriend Happy Birthday. That was it, nothing else special the entire trip. :( Really disappointed there. I made a big deal of the birthday upon booking. GROUNDS: Unbelievable. Truly amazing. Tons of trees, flowers, etc. Stray cats were cute, left you alone, lounged under a beach chair from time to time. Grounds keepers were working around the clock- everywhere. All the time. Don't pick up the crabs, they bite! :) FOOD: Pretty good. If you didn't like something, just get something else. Could not get reservations to Eleanors and there were plenty of empty tables every time we walked by the whole time they were open. This was the biggest complaint of the entire trip. I do not know if they "save" them in case a Butler guest wants it last minute or what. But it was ridiculous. Totally stupid. This needs fixed. They wouldn't budge to get us in even when the boyfriend complained. All restaurants are not open all the time. Check the daily schedule. The Lava Cake from Marios was in deed to die for. Small portion, just get 2 or 3! The salmon at Mario's was simply fantastic! Marios and the Drunken Duck were our favorites due to choice of food and service. Eleanors in the morning is ordering your breakfast at "island" pace. If you're in a hurry, get the buffet next door at Bayside, you can be in an out in 10-15 minutes if you want. Good variety each day. Yes, there are birds there and at Barefoot by the Sea. They are open air restaurants. Sandals did chase them off occassionally with palm leaves. Tables were cleaned quickly when you left as not to attract more. Just glance at the food before you put it on your plate :) They didn't eat much :) I never got sick. I liked watching the birds. We took turns getting up to get more food to guard the table :) The hot foods were covered at the buffet. A cat would wander through from time to time, never tried to take food. The Jerk Chicken at Barefoot was awesome. It had a kick but very, very good! BEACH: Vendors are there, yes. It's a public beach, it's how they make money. You are a guest in their country, just accept it and don't let it ruin your time. They weren't too much of a problem for us. They do hollar over the fence, just say "no thanks" and keep walking. We did book a horse ride from Shon on the beach near the sports desk. The beach is amazing and very calm, warm as a bathtub, sand very soft and fine. Beach cleaned every day from seaweed, etc. I would have stayed in the ocean the whole entire time but there was so much I wanted to do and no time to do it all. Watched the sunset from the ocean most nights. We used the kayaks and paddleboards and had fun. Plenty of beach chairs to go around, we even got a shade in the afternoon. Beach is busier in the morning and before lunch. POOL: Awesome! Very large, can visit with other guests or have room to yourself. Pool busier in afternoon. We spent most evenings there after the ocean and it was not busy at all. Plenty of shades and floaties. Pool bar was nice. Bar closes at 6pm, you'll have to get drinks from the pub if you want to bring to the pool after that. (I truly think that's why the pool is not busier later in the evening.) BOOZE: Yummy! Try the Reggae Top if you like frozen, fruity, colorful drinks! It was the best. Beer is local. If its not enough alcohol, ask for a double shot, its no problem. In room bar didn't get stocked daily like it should have, but we had plenty to drink. We didn't request anything specific. But it was nice to grab in the middle of the night if you wanted. Tried the Chocolate Monkey, it was so.so. Just ask the bar tenders for anything special, they will help with suggestions or make you something specific. ENTERTAINMENT: Bands and singers usually outside the pub at night. Dance class one night in the courtyard, super fun. Steel drums around the property (Med. side) on occassion in the evenings. Didn't play any games at the pool. etc but visited with other guests who did and said it was a blast and they gave prizes away. We'll join in next time! Read the bulletin you get each night for the activites schedule for the next day. GUESTS: All ages. Honeymooners, middleaged, older and even saw some wheelchairs cruising around. I fully expected it to be a younger crowd and was surprised at the variances. Everyone seemed to act like adults and not scream and hollar drunk at the pool, etc. The pub can get a little rowdy late at night but we didn't see any problems, and most were very happy to be there and enjoyed visiting with you, we were all there to have a good time. We met some really nice people. ACTIVITES: Plenty. Dance classes, musical entertainment, water sports, hammocks all over, the tour desk, the spa (we did not partake), games (again, we didn't play), the beach party (which was not normal due to the storm), the shop, photographers, etc. Of course there are activites on the island off the property with shopping, seeing local landmarks, museums, Shirley Heights party, Stingray City, donkey sanctuary, etc. One couple was upset they needed a medical release to go scuba diving. It clearly states in the brochure that you need one- whether you've ever needed one before or not- just get it signed and don't forget it. We went shopping in town for souvenirs, Devil's Bridge, and then to Shirley Heights on Sunday. That was fun. Nice for sunset pictures but lots of people at the best view point and you have to cram your way in to get a shot. Don't miss the awesome bar b que the locals put on! Don't forget to dance with the guy in the dreadlocks after the sun goes down. :) TAXI: If you want a taxi to take you on tours, etc, call Roger! Roger's Taxi and Tours. He is wonderful. Nice cars, awesome hospitality, always on time, and he will stay with you all day if you like. As a native, he knows everything there is to know about the island. And I do mean everything. BUGS: You're on an island. They are there. Bring bug spray and use it. Sandals tries their best to rid the property of them but lots of bugs have these little appendages called "wings" and they migrate :) The mosquitos are the problem. Property is fogged between 4-6pm daily. We were in the ocean each time or on a tour so was never around for it. You still need bug spray day or night. I loved the lizards and I even saw a tarantula cross my path late one night- the only night I did not have my camera! :) ATTIRE: Shorts, t-shirts, swimsuits pretty much go anytime. Check the bulletin or brochure on restaurants dress codes, they follow it. I noticed each evening the ladies wore sundresses and dressed up a bit more for some reason. I was one of very few people that wore shorts all day and felt a little out of place in the evenings. THE STORM: Our last full day was 'going' to be spent at Stingray City and the beach. Tropical Storm/Hurricane Gonzalo decided to change that plan. Storm moved in about 7 am and we received a phone call from the main desk at about 830 stating for us to stay in our room until about noon due to trees falling outside and chairs/debris blowing, etc. The storm calmed approximately 930 or 10 and everyone was out taking pictures. Very sad. Many of the beautiful palms were down, beach palapas down and covered with sand, tables and chairs tossed about and boats beached at nearby properties. Someone told us it was a Cat. 1 Hurricane but a meeting with Mr. G. that afternoon repeatedly insisted it was a Tropical Storm. Some guests suspected this was so that they did not have to reimburse guests for a lost day due to a hurricane, but I have no idea. I was happy to get photos of the property before hand when it was so beautiful. All the guests looked truly sad. Not to fear though, the Sandals staff were out (in the rain) as soon as the worst of the storm passed and the sound of chainsaws filled the air with the angry ocean as they started to put the property back together. The staff did not waste any time and worked ALL night. First, they cleared the walking paths and moved on to cutting damaged trees down and so on, the beach was pristine the following morning like nothing ever happened except for a few downed palapas. Staff came in on their off days in street clothes and a name badge to serve guests or clean the grounds. Some staff had their own homes damaged and still came to work I think I heard. The restaurants served buffet style meals and generators gave us power when the rest of the island was without. The beach party was held in the ballroom with the steel drum band, fresh coconuts, and the bbq to boot to keep the party going! Mr. G assured the guests there was plenty of alcohol to last for "weeks"- big cheers from the crowd on that one. Hats off to the entire staff. They did their best to keep things going as normal as possible given everything was thrown off. SOON COME BACK DESK: This was frustrating, given that we tried to contact the desk the morning after the storm when the internet was trying to come back up (and our departure day). We waited and waited on the Carib. side of the resort for the employee to come talk with us only to be told we still had to walk to the Med. side to book as there was internet working there. They could have put up a sign and saved us 45 minutes waiting. We did book for Jamaica next year and are extremely excited. It's a good deal to sign up as a returning guest (fun benefits for future stays) and they usually have a special at a particular resort you can get if you book before you leave. OVERALL: I would go back and am a Sandals fan! I'm excited to try other properties and locations. All-inclusive is the way to go, but I felt so horrible leaving restaurants without leaving a tip or waiting for a tab! No tipping is very nice. Your trip is paid for before you even show up so there is no added worries unless you visit the Spa or the Gift Shop. The property is amazing as well as the views. The room was great, I'm sure they are all fine. We heard from a guest on their honeymoon that the butlers were amazing but a splurge for their trip and wouldn't do again due to extra cost. I cannot vouch, but don't have the desire for a butler personally. The staff were very friendly, only a few seemed a tad grumpy but didn't seem to be any fault of the guests, maybe a bad day? If we were nice, they were nice as well. It goes both ways. As with any vacation I think it is what you make of it. People were still having fun the day of the storm (mostly at the pub and taking pictures) and the staff kept everyone informed of the resort running as well as flights from the airport which were cancelled, rescheduled, delayed, etc. We were lucky and not affected by any of that. If you want an awesome painting by Ricky, the local artist in the courtyard on the Carib. side (he also did the wood carvings on property) sign up early! He gets busy and has to limit his paintings daily to get them all done. We bought two and adore them! His prices are very reasonale too!!! Don't put too much weight on any of these reviews and make your own determinations. I personally may have read too many reviews, and also researched the property too much prior to the trip that when I arrived it seemed nothing was a fun surprise- I think that can be a draw back. I knew where everything was before I even got there, spoiled the fun of exploring I think and took away a little bit of the wow factor- and SGA definitely has an amazing wow factor!!! But I still had a great time. I loved the island and the people and hope I can return someday soon. Never wanted to leave. Just as we were getting comfortable it was time to leave. We are GoPro fans and got a million comments with it. Took tons of photos and video- photos to follow! Enjoy your stay!

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    Dedication in paradise

    Reviewed by Jenn P(Casper, Wyoming) on Oct 20, 2014

    We arrived at the resort the day before Hurricane Gonzalo hit. During and after the storm, the staff was very concerned about the safety of the guests and worked so incredibly hard to restore the...

    We arrived at the resort the day before Hurricane Gonzalo hit. During and after the storm, the staff was very concerned about the safety of the guests and worked so incredibly hard to restore the resort. They made sure we had water, electricity, food, and drinks, and held an informational meeting for everyone to attend. At the meeting the general manager promised everyone they would be back to normal in 72 hours. He was right! The staff tirelessly worked day and night to clean debris, repair damaged property, relocate people and do everything needed. We even witnessed the general manager in the Drunken Duck pub late that night busing tables and washing dishes with other staff members. When guests asked what could be done to help, all they said was "donate to the Sandals Foundation". The staff got everything taken care of and the resort was back to its beautiful self less than 72 hours later. Although we had to stay in our rooms and essentially lost a day of our trip due Gonzalo, the rest of our stay was great! It would not have turned out that way without the dedicated employees of Sandals Grande Antigua!

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      Not So Great

      Reviewed by cindy l(Gonzales, Louisiana) on Oct 20, 2014

      I have been to several sandals resorts. This by far has been the worst. If you have not visited another sandals you would think it was great. I have been to other locations so I know the...

      I have been to several sandals resorts. This by far has been the worst. If you have not visited another sandals you would think it was great. I have been to other locations so I know the difference. Terrible Service by a lot of unhappy looking employees. There were a couple of employees that went over and beyond but for the most part there were some that could use some retraining for the hospitality business. Food was not good. Entertainment was almost non existent. Hardly a stitch of music around the pool areas. One gentleman had his personal speaker system to entertain the guest. Sandals needs to invest in some bartender classes for their employees. Just because a drink is strong it does not make it good. Dinner should not take three hours we arrived at 7 and finish at 10. The waitress seemed really upset at the kitchen because she had to answer to the unhappy guest. I saw several people different uniforms working in different areas. They seemed really short staffed. The resort was beautiful very clean loved the layout any room on the resort would be great, pools were fabulous. Always had to go searching for towels none around the beach area. Hurricane Gonzalo hit the island while we were there which we are used to hurricanes we have been in several. NEVER ONCE did sandals offer ANY type of refund despite the fact they only had one restaurant open with limited food. One guest had to eat an egg omelet for breakfast as well as lunch. The bed felt like you were sleeping on a piece of plywood. Everyone needs to visit a Sandals in Jamaica I guarantee you will not return to the Sandals Antiqua.

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