(Syracuse, New York)
Feb 23, 2024
We stayed here 6 years ago. The service is not what is was then (seemed short staffed, almost no poolside servers, etc.) but NOT worse than service one can expect in any US hotel since 2021. At least there is daily housekeeping. Some tips for travelers:
Food: food is extremely expensive but we had groceries and alcohol delivered the first day from a local grocery. This saved us a great deal.
Tipping: all bills/checks have at least 15% gratuity added and some, like room service, have an additional $4-5 service charge. The servers will not tell you this. If you typically tip 20%, you'll want to add just 5% to the subtotal total already includes 15% tip).
Giftcards: no place on the "campus" accepts Atlantis gift cards, so if you provided them to teens for use, that will not work. You can only redeem giftcards at CHECKOUT by applying them to your room charges.
Restaurants: if you wish to eat at any specialty restaurants at Marina village, get reservations before you leave home. Food is readily available other places, though.
Waterpark: plan in the afternoon, like 2pm or after. The cruiseships sell day passes as excursions which makes the Waterpark very busy before the cruise folks leave. Otherwise, that is a fun way to pass some time.
Overall, a very good experience. While understaffed, I was pleased with the service the available staff provided. There was excellent snorkeling for free right at the beach by the Cove (if you bring your stuff) and the weather is always beautiful! We also felt very safe on the resort at all times. Enjoy!
Atlantis does not live up to the hype
Feb 21, 2024
We just completed our five night stay at the Reef, and he service and location are the only things that I can brag on, unfortunately.
Everywhere we went, the service was top notch. Every employee we encountered was very friendly and helpful to the point we couldn't stop talking about it. They definitely wanted you to enjoy your stay. Paradise Island was gorgeous with several great beaches, and some decent snorkeling to boot.
Unfortunately, that's where the praise stops. The biggest issues we had were with the upkeep of the property and the overpriced food. Our room (king suite with pull out couch) was sufficient for the four of us. The kitchenette was a great feature and the number one reason we booked the Reef. However, our room had super dingy carpet, a toilet paper holder that kept falling off the wall, an occasional sewer smell emanating from the bathroom, and GFCI outlets that would trip as soon as you plugged something in (didn't even matter if you turned it on).
The waterpark was fun, but in need of lots of cosmetic repairs. There were three slides shut down when we attended for some form of maintenance, including one of the two challenger slides. There were so many other areas that needed maintenance as well. None of it made us feel unsafe, but it did detract from the overall resort experience, especially for the price you pay.
Our biggest beef was the food. We were warned that Atlantis restaurants were pricey, and we brought along lots of snacks and stuff to make our own breakfast and lunches. That said, we still got dinner out/in every night, and were nothing bu disappointed. Atlantis pretty much has you hostage for any decent food options on Paradise Island and they know it. We ate at Fish, Nobu, and ordered room service twice. Sadly, the room service was the best food we had on the trip. None of the food was memorable, and it was all significantly overpriced. Everything we had a Fish was incredibly bland. Nobu's food was better, and I would actually recommend it if it wasn't so overpriced. We travel a lot and we enjoy good food when we do, and this just isn't it. It would be acceptable for half the price.
Overall, we had great weather, and enjoyed being away from the cold for four days, but I would not recommend Atlantis to anyone I know. There are so many better options, some of which are even all-inclusive, for the same price.
Good bang for buck
Feb 20, 2024
Overall great family vacation for four. Good value for price we paid <$10000 four 4. Amazing pools, lagoons, sites, gardens, beaches.
Reef kitchenettes worked great for breakfast everyday and watching cruise ships come in.
Great for families traveling together (but has a few downsides)
Feb 20, 2024
We just got back from a six-day stay at The Reef on our second trip to Atlantis. We had a two-bedroom suite that we shared with the other family we traveled with. All together, we were 4 adults and three kids (8, 10, 10).
Overall, The Reef was comfortable and enjoyable, and while there were a few downsides, we’re still planning to stay there next year.
- Close to the water park, pools, and beach (without being in the middle of everything). Easy walk to Aquaventure and restaurants, yet also removed enough to be a bit of a calmer vibe.
- The Cascades pool/Paradise Beach “has everything” in the words of our group: pool, beach, bathrooms, comfortable chairs, good food/drink options, towel hut, poolside games, and Starbucks. We loved that you didn’t have to choose between pool or beach, and kids could effectively choose both.
- Full kitchen or kitchenette in rooms: We got grocery delivery (FoodStore2Go) and brought some food from home. For kids who wake up starving after a day at the water park, it’s a lifesaver to be able to have a regular breakfast immediately in the room without getting dressed.
- Rooms are spacious and well-appointed. We didn’t feel like we were tripping over suitcases or each other, even with sofa beds extended in both rooms.
- For groups traveling together, having two connected rooms allowed us to be together but also have enough space (and enough bathrooms).
- Prompt service: Whenever we asked for something from staff, they were prompt (extra blankets, extra tissues, extra K-Cups).
- Good shuttle service: We stayed at the Harborside last year, and found that we would often be waiting 10-15 minutes for a shuttle, whether at Harborside or another hotel to go to Harborside. At the Reef, whenever we wanted to go to the Marina or The Royal and didn’t feel like walking, shuttles came within 5 minutes, and shuttles back to the Reef were easy. Several drivers simply asked where the bus was heading and took us all there directly, both on shuttles with marked routes and those without (still official shuttles).
- Laundry on the floor. The one big plus of Harborside in our book was that there was in-room laundry. However, The Reef had it on the floor, and that was convenient enough.
- Stair or elevator access: Despite what we read online, stairs were accessible by guests, and easy for low-floor rooms.
- All rooms have a balcony (great for drying bathing suits!)
- Playground right outside the hotel
- The pavilion right outside The Reef is a popular wedding venue, and was booked both the Friday and Saturday night we were there. This meant loud music until midnight both nights, and while people deserve a fun party after their wedding, it was a bit of a letdown to need earplugs to sleep at a higher-end hotel. We were halfway down the building towards the beach on the West side, closer to the venue. Next year, I will request an even room number (East side) or a room towards the street entrance away from the beach. (I wish they would have the parties stop at 10pm, or simply move to The Royal at that point.)
- 2-bedroom suites are a studio plus 1-bedroom, which means that if you’re traveling as two families, one family gets a smaller room. This worked fine for us since one family was a family of 3, but might not if you’re two families of 4. (The website says the rooms are 1 king + 2 queen, so perhaps we got an older room. Our room did not match the options shown on the website.)
- Limited food options in-building and no room service: No bar or restaurant in the lobby, only Starbucks (which was usually slammed with tired parents like us). No room service, and the Marina pizza place only delivers to the Royal. The only food delivery option was Domino’s.
Overall, it was a wonderful stay, and we look forward to staying there again. The noise from the weddings was the only major downside and I wish I’d known in advance to ask for a room on the other side of the building.
Great vacation spot
Feb 15, 2024
I would absolutely come back to the Atlantis for a vacation. From the beautiful beaches to all of the pools. The weather wasn't the best but there was enough activities to find something to do. The staff was always willing to help with questions