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What to expect (based on 3940 reviews):
5 most recent TripAdvisor reviews:
Nice resort, bit large
My husband and I recently spent 7 days at the Sandals Grande Antigua. This was our 4th Sandals resort, having also stayed at Royal Plantation (twice), Royal Bahamian, Emerald Bay, as well as at...
My husband and I recently spent 7 days at the Sandals Grande Antigua. This was our 4th Sandals resort, having also stayed at Royal Plantation (twice), Royal Bahamian, Emerald Bay, as well as at Beaches Negril for a family vacation. We opted to stay in the Caribbean side of the resort, which I'm glad we did as it is much lusher, more laid back and tropical feeling, and closer to beach & restaurants, whereas the Mediterranean side feels quite corporate albeit with awesome views over the resort & mountains (on the back side of the resort). Side note: There are two parrots, Samson & Delilah, who are kept in a cage in the Carib lobby, and they are taken out for 'exercise' every morning at which time you can watch them 'play pool' or ask to have Delilah (the more sociable of the two) stand on your arm for a photo op. Quite fun if you are an animal lover like me! Speaking of which, there are also a number of cats around the property, practical to ward off any unwanted rodents, but also a nice aspect to the place. The beach is lovely with white sand and turquoise water. My only disappointment was that there were no waves to speak of, which both my husband and I would have liked -- both for the sound of the breakers and to play around in, body surfing or what have you. But still a great beach for either swimming around in or floating (like my husband does!). There are a number of small pools on the Caribbean side, but we ended up preferring the large (main) pool on the Med side for its atmosphere and open vistas. Lots of restaurants to choose from, and we tried them all except for Soy. Thought Eleanor's was a bit overrated, and the lobster okay but not exquisite. OK Corral is worth trying if only for the view over the beach from its elevated location over the Sundowner bar. We sort of wished it could be re-purposed either as a bar (there is no lounge-type bar with a view at this resort; the piano bar adjacent to OK Corral is totally interior, which is a pity) or a different style restaurant, i.e., something more Caribbean-oriented rather than Tex Mex. Mario's has an awesome antipasto bar -- one evening we went just for that! A bit of an issue with butlers reserving not only the best beach/pool loungers (sometime before 6am, as that is when my husband went out to check; he thought they may have got someone to place the little tables upside down on the loungers the night before in order to reserve them!), but also the best tables at restaurants like Eleanors, where all the tables bordering the beach walkway had little flowers on them, indicating they were butler booked. This aspect of the two-tier (butler/non-butler) Sandals policy was quite noticeable and somewhat annoying. Staff were generally quite engaging and friendly, which was pretty much true of everyone we encountered in Antigua. A couple of special shout-outs: Threcia in the spa was wonderful, and I very much enjoyed my time with her (excellent pedicure and memorable conversation, a truly lovely girl). Also, we took a Best of Antigua 3-hour island tour with Cecil, who is awesome and very much recommended if you want any sort of outing. All in all, Sandals Antigua is a very nice resort and its only real drawback for us was its size. We generally much prefer a smaller property, like Royal Plantation or Emerald Bay (our two favourites so far). Having said this, we really enjoyed our week there and would recommend it overall.
Sadals 9th visit
Sandals Antigua was our 9th Sandals vacation. I must say from a resort standpoint Antigua was so far the nicest resort. As I read the reviews here often I thought I would share some input for those...
Sandals Antigua was our 9th Sandals vacation. I must say from a resort standpoint Antigua was so far the nicest resort. As I read the reviews here often I thought I would share some input for those of you considering this resort or Sandals overall. Pros: 1. Largest Sandals we have stayed at to date. This is key as even when the resort was full, it never felt crowded 2. The grounds were very clean and kept up very well 3. Numerous pools to choose from. The main large pool was often crowded but again enjoyable 4. The bartenders at this resort did a great job, very little wait time for drinks 5. Our room was awesome, private plunge pool 2 room suite on Mediterranean side with Butlers (this was our 4th time using Butlers) 6. The beach was very large with very clean sand, the beach was only second to Sandals Emerald Bay 7. Numerous places to eat 8. The staff overall very nice and helpful 9. Security – The resorts had a 24hr presence of security, exp at the beach to only allow guest on the resort. Cons 1. Beach Vendors – Sandals Antigua beach is public the vendors were many, they will approach you numerous times and even after you say no thank you they will come back and ask you again. We found ourselves not enjoying the beach as much because it was never peaceful. This is nothing Sandals can control however. Remember we are their guest on their island, be polite. 2. Food – overall food was a grade of a B compared to other Sandals resorts 3. Guests continue to think they can hold a pool floaties by their chairs out of the pool; these are for all to use. If you want one and it’s out of the water, take it, people do not own these. We actually saw hotel staff walk the pool and remove floaties from guest chair areas and put back in the pool… THANK YOU STAFF! Some guest are ignorant and can’t read the signs. We actually had a large angry woman yell at us and stated she had rented it for the day, seriously. I took it anyway and layed on it with a drink. Finally we will be visiting this resort again for sure.
Sandals in Antigua is 5 Star, Couples Only Resort
Don’t expect to see drunken topless girls, rowdy guys, gang members or kids here, but this is a very Fun, Relaxing laid back place. No Worries Here. VC Bird Airport is small and friendly airport and...
Don’t expect to see drunken topless girls, rowdy guys, gang members or kids here, but this is a very Fun, Relaxing laid back place. No Worries Here. VC Bird Airport is small and friendly airport and it took about 20 minutes to go thru Immigration and Customs. The Immigration workers were very friendly and helpful. A new terminal is said to be completed by September 2014. The new Up-to-date Passenger Processing will contain 46 check-in counters, 15 self-check in kiosks, 5 Baggage carousels, a mini food court, multiple VIP lounges, Bank, Retail stores, First class lounges, Restaurants and other Facilities. The trip from VC Bird to Sandals was about a 15 minute ride thru the country along the ocean. We upgraded to the Club Sandals Concierge and when we arrived by private cab we were greeted to private check-in with a glass of champagne and a cold cloth. The room was ready upon arrival, clean and made up at least twice a day and had turn-down service at night! We stayed in the all-suites Mediterranean Village expansion with lavish units with matching marble, mosaic tile, mahogany furniture, flat-screen TV, spacious bathroom with rain shower and separate Jacuzzi tub and twin sinks. We stayed in this Five Star Resort for seven nights not enough and could have stayed forever. This was our first experience at a Sandals resort, and we loved it. The complex is divided up into two sides the Caribbean Village (older side) and the Mediterranean Village (New side) both has a lot of amenities, swimming pools and shops. Some of the rooms even have their own private splash pools. There was a very nice workout facility with a cold water pool and a warm water pool. The public spaces were well-kept, lovely un-crowed beach, glorious gardens, and plethora of facilities, many pools with swim-up bars; upscale restaurants; an English pub; and posh retailers. I will especially recommend the OK Corral is a TexMex restaurant overlooking the beach which serves extra spicy dishes such as Chicken fajitas and cream cheese encased in chilies then deep fried, Steaks and Seafood. The food was heavenly and the service second to none. There are many restaurant s including a Japanese restaurant, an Italian restaurant, and a Steak House restaurant and English Pub. All were very good. There was food and drinks at all times day and night There was always something entertaining going on in the open air lobby--bands with steel drums, dancing etc. One day venders came and set up tables at the Pool, so you wouldn't even have to leave the hotel to go shopping. The staff is very friendly in most cases. Gavin from the Main Pool Bar was awesome. David from the Drunken Duck is very nice and helpful. We met a lot of wonderful couples here this week, some young and some older. The only issue we had was that we requested to be close to our friends. The rooms were quite a distance apart and no other rooms were available but our Concierge took charge and put them just a few doors down from us. Room Tip: Upgrade to the Club Sandals Concierge Service, well worth the money. Excursions and Extras: We did the Couples massage $260.00, quite pricey, but the wife enjoyed it. Note on the beach at North end of the Resort is a guy who does coconut oil massage on the beach for $40.00. All the vendors on the beach are licensed so there are no worries about using them. We did the Sandals escorted Antigua Shopping $30.00 for two; we went on a day when the cruise ship was in port, very busy and crowded. We went back the next day in a taxi for $24.00 ($12.00 each way) for 4 people and was much more enjoyable and the taxi waited for us and brought us back. We also did the 7 hour Sandals Exclusive Circumnavigation Cruise $230.00 and snorkeling trip around the Island, Great food, Rum drinks and beer included. This was the best value of all the excursions.
Pity about the service
Sandals is Disneyland for adults. You pay an all inclusive price and food, drinks and water sports are included. It is located in a beautiful bay with a spectacular beach and a coral sea. There are...
Sandals is Disneyland for adults. You pay an all inclusive price and food, drinks and water sports are included. It is located in a beautiful bay with a spectacular beach and a coral sea. There are several swimming pools of different sizes. The room on the Caribbean side was very comfortable. This should be paradise but it is not. The principal issue is service. Initially service seems wonderful with all staff wishing you a wonderful day but one then realizes that they are not going to help you have that wonderful day. Hundreds of guests arrive and leave every day and the staff may as well be working in a sardine factory. They are just processing and serving a never ending, faceless group of people and it shows. It shows at reception, in the restaurants, in the bars, at the pool, at guest relations - everywhere. We waited an hour for a pizza in the pizzeria and nobody cared! Except for the starters at Mario's the food is mediocre. The included wines were four budget Beringer wines which were all disappointing. A pina colada at the main pool was slop. The exception to poor quality drinks and poor service was the Piano Bar which was excellent. The final insult was when I was told that the all inclusive US$650 per night that we were paying was too low to include free wifi. I paid $42 to get a week's wifi to then find that this was limited to three devices. No warning was given of this limit so one could not choose the devices to connect. Once a device was connected it could not be removed. One could not buy a second service for more devices.I was blocked by unhelpful operators who kept telling me that they could do nothing to change the process. When I insisted on speaking to the duty manager, to his great credit, he swept aside all the restrictions, gave me an additional service of a further five device connection (which was far more than I needed) and even credited me with the cost of the first service. It was just a pity that I had to push so hard to finally find a person who cared. Perhaps this resort was never for me? I was in the minority in not having a tattoo on my body!
Honeymoon at Sandals Antigua
I definitely have mixed reviews after spending 5 days at this resort for our honeymoon.... Arrival at the airport and transfer to Sandals was easy & well organized. In 20 minutes we were checking...
I definitely have mixed reviews after spending 5 days at this resort for our honeymoon.... Arrival at the airport and transfer to Sandals was easy & well organized. In 20 minutes we were checking in. This is where issues started. Our room was not ready until 3:30 even though check in is at 3:00. We were assigned room 207 which was a concierge club level room with a view of a large air conditioner, side of main building, and driveway dropping off new guests. Overall eye sore. Avoid this room! After complaining (& more issues which I don't want to go over) about our lovely view we were moved to the Mediterranean side. Room was much better. I'm sure rooms on Caribbean side are nice but our wasn't. We are on our honeymoon which Sandals is known for but never received any perks as described in their brochures. Nothing waiting in our room, no decorating, champagne or flowers and on our last day had go to the sales office to ask when to expect our honeymoon perks. Leaving tomorrow and still nothing. I would not recommend going here for a honeymoon but I would if you find a good price on a vacation. The staff except for check in on the Caribbean side is wonderful. They definitely go out of their way to ensure you stay is exceptional. Restaurants are good (nothing amazing) and we had no problem getting reservations. Drinks are so so. It depends on the bar you go to within the resort. Top shelf brands are extremely limited! The beach is beautiful & we loved the large round rafts in the ocean to float on. It is a public beach but we didn't find anyone intrusive in trying to sell souvenirs or water sports. Overall our stay was nice. I would give it a 7 out of 10. We were definitely let down as honeymooners.
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