Sandals Royal Barbados

5.0 star rating

Exceptional accommodation with superior facilities and services.

    What to expect (based on 1710 reviews):

    Cleanliness

    Cleanliness-5

    Location

    Location-4.5

    Rooms

    Rooms-5

    Service

    Service-4.5

    Value

    Value-4

    5 most recent TripAdvisor reviews:

    Beautiful Resort

    Reviewed by sbe74(Maryland) on Feb 19, 2020

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			4
			 out of 5

    This trip to Sandals Royal Barbados was our 8th Sandals, and exactly the experience that we’ve come to expect from the brand. We visited Sandals Barbados in 2017, when the Royal side was under construction so we were excited to check it out. The two resorts are side-by-side, and generally pretty indistinguishable from one another, so it really seemed like one large resort. Prior to the trip, we debated an upgrade to a private airport transfer and decided against it, since we’ve typically had good experiences when we previously used the Sandals group transfers. We regretted that decision. There is no Sandals lounge at the Barbados airport- just a desk outside in front of the airport loading zone. We were among the first couples to arrive so we ended up waiting in the heat and car fumes for approximately 30 minutes to board the bus. Once we actually sat down on the bus, they announced that we would wait another 15 minutes for other guests to possibly arrive. It was a bad start to the trip, for sure. Once we arrived at the resort, check in was quick and our butler arrived immediately to escort us to our room. We stayed in a Royal Seaside Crystal Lagoon Penthouse One Bedroom Oceanview Butler Suite w/ Balcony Tranquility Soaking Tub. The room was clean and beautiful, with a view of the pool and the ocean. We especially liked the giant balcony with a tub. The only negative was the inconsistent water in the shower and sink. Sometimes we’d have strong water pressure and other times, it would be just a weak stream. And sometimes the temperature was fine, but other times it would be cold. Our first dinner after our arrival was at the American Tavern, which was probably the worst service we’ve ever encountered at a Sandals resort. It took over 2 hours for appetizers and dinner. We wanted dessert but just gave up because we were tired at that point. Our butler seated us, so she poured our first glasses of water and wine, but they were never refilled by the restaurant staff, so we spent the entire meal with empty glasses. That said, our meals were tasty, but certainly not worth the abysmal service. Thankfully, the remainder of the week was much better, and we only experienced great service and food. We ate our first breakfast at American Tavern and while the food was good, we weren’t impressed with the setting. We much preferred Spices on the Sandals Barbados side. Seating was outdoors there, and I especially enjoyed chatting with Tony at the omelet station. Most of our days were spent at the Infinity Pool. Compared to some other Sandals we’ve been to, this main pool was mellow. The Playmakers were present, but we barely even noticed them. There were some pool activities, but they were quiet and low-key. The bartenders at the pool bar were awesome! Everyone was so cheerful and we never had to wait for a drink. Pool chairs were definitely hard to come by on some days - we are early risers, but most of the chairs were taken by 8 or so. The resort fitness center was small, but had everything we needed and it was clean. There were 6 treadmills, but there was only one day when all of them were occupied. And in a hilarious setup, the donut shop was right across the path from the fitness center, so it was the perfect reward for working out. One thing that we found curious was that we never saw a single bug at the resort. Not a single fly, bee, gnat, whatever! Not even milling about in the sugary drinks at the pool bar. I don’t know if it was due to the pest control on the resort, or the wind, or a combination of both, but nonetheless, it was pretty impressive! Our departure flight was late in the afternoon, so we were happy to take advantage of the departure lounge with showers and lockers. It ended up allowing us to have almost a full last day on the resort, so it was a nice bonus! But throughout the trip, the one thing that made our stay perfect was the butler team of Arlene, Shonika and Janere (along with the awesome trainee Cheneese). They handled everything for us, and were so incredibly cheerful and accommodating. We didn’t have any special requests for dinner, so they presented us with a list of our reservations for the entire week upon our arrival. They brought us our daily lunch and a few snacks throughout the day. In the mornings, they would set up our chairs with a cooler. We are not a couple that makes decisions easily, so we absolutely loved having someone to do that for us! Everything we asked for, they made happen! Thanks for another great trip, Sandals. We already have 2 more trips booked!

    Great get away just before Christmas

    Reviewed by BAC2006(Kansas City, Kansas) on Feb 19, 2020

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			5
			 out of 5

    Going to Barbados has been on our bucket list for sometime. Having stayed at Sandals many times this seem like a no brainier. The service was outstanding, along with the weather (although constantly windy), food, pool and drinks. We have had butlers in the past and have become a standard for our stays. This time we had 3 female butlers that did a fine job, but not up to some of the other butlers we have had. They managed to get our pool chairs close to our chosen location with a cooler of beer. First Caribbean island we can remember to have Budweiser. Best part of our stay was an island tour by Captain Larry. You can find him roaming the beach usually in the morning. Long paints, long sleeve shirt carrying a briefcase. He offers a personalize tour from 2-hours to 8 hours for the same price $195.00 (less than the resort or other tour offers) It is a very beautiful island and the guide was very knowledgeable about the island history. Can't comment about the breakfast buffet as we had breakfast room service every day. (yes we were very lazy). For dinner our best choices were Butchs steak house on the Barbados side, La Parisienne (french), American Tavern. Although this is the most expensive vacation we have taken, it will always be the most memorable.

    Individual ratings:

    Location

    Location-5

    Rooms

    Rooms-4

    Service

    Service-5

    Sandals Royal Barbados 2020

    Reviewed by Harv and Lois H(Garfield, Arkansas) on Feb 19, 2020

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			5
			 out of 5

    This is an excellent resort! From the very scenic and well-kept grounds to the restaurants and beach, but especially all the staff, it was a terrific experience. Although we stayed in a suite on Sandals Royal Barbados (SRB), it is adjacent (20 feet) to Sandals Barbados, and all guests at either resort have full access to everything at both locations. We walked all the grounds at both resorts, ate at restaurants at both resorts and used bars at both resorts. All were excellent! The staff at SRB that we interacted with was perhaps some of the best we've experienced in our visits to 8 different Sandals resorts. From the moment we arrived and were greeted by staff and singers, we continually encountered smiling and friendly people, and very willing assistance anytime we made a request or asked questions. The restaurants we frequented provided great food. Dinner at Butch's Steak and Seafood House provided good (albeit somewhat dry) steak and lobster tails. Bombay and Chi gave us delicious alternatives to typical fare. Neptunes was great seafood with a Caribbean bent. And Soy is as good sushi and sashimi as we have had anywhere! We enjoyed the breakfast buffets at Spices and American Tavern. From custom ordered omelets and eggs to several fresh fruits, yogurt and cereals and a wide variety of other items, you simply can't beat this for getting what you want. As choices to vary from those buffets, La Parisienne and Portofino's offer a la carte menus that included delicious french toast drizzled with caramel and topped off with rum syrup. Yum! Of course, there are Cafe de Paris and Sweet and Salty's for oh so tempting treats and various coffees. Both are open all day till late in the evening. Way too many good things in those places! Don't wear tight clothes! The beaches at these two resorts, while not as large as others we've been to, were awesome! The sand is soft and fine and great to walk on. There is a decent break water of rocks that provide a pretty nice area for getting into the beautiful salt water. Most of the beach is in the sun, but there are plenty of palm trees and umbrellas to provide shade for the loungers. The only downside was the wind...it was very windy every day, but two days they had to lower the sails as we watched a couple of beach umbrellas take flight! Fortunately, the fine sand didn't start blowing until our last day there, causing us to pack up earlier than planned. Don't know if it is that way year round, or just typical for Jan/Feb timeframe. With 3 swim-up bar pools, there's no lack of space to play and enjoy those cold drinks. If you prefer a quiet pool, the South Seas Pool is a peaceful place to soak up sun or read in the shade, as well as the roof top pool and hot tub. The grounds of both resorts are beautiful and a joy to stroll through. The staff works constantly to keep them looking terrific and making those strolls so pleasant. There are many little "hideaways" along walkways for folks to simply sit down and enjoy the tranquility of the setting. A few individual shout-outs to folks who stood out in making our stay even more enjoyable: At the front desk, "Zo" was an absolute treat! We visited with her a couple of times and simply had fun conversations. She kept up with other guests as they needed her assistance, but made us feel very special with her friendliness and great chats, and she made a point of finding us in the crowd departing to send us off with smiles, warm hugs and "Please come back!" In housekeeping, Yvette was phenomenal in making sure our room was in great shape, but especially attentive to any special requests we had. She always had a glowing smile and an equally beautiful personality...the best we've had in all our years of traveling! Also in housekeeping, one of the supervisors, Karen Harvey, stood out for her responsiveness and follow through when we had some minor issues with housekeeping on Yvette's day off. Karen was very easy to work with, listened to our concerns and responded personally to remedy them within 30 minutes. A great experience! When sitting in loungers on the beach, there are staff who frequently walk through taking drink orders, delivering drinks and picking up empty glasses. One such person who stood out was Janeesha. Upon delivering drinks to us one day, she noted that our faces showed we didn't particularly like them. She came back, discussed the drink and proceeded to return to the bar and make them herself...and they were delicious. After that, on days that she was working, she made a point of coming to us and offering to make our drinks. Raquel was another very friendly and helpful beach staff. On a day that we had not yet seen Janeesha, Raquel asked if we needed anything. We mentioned that Janeesha had been making terrific drinks for us, so Raquel proceeded to go find her for us. A bit of extra effort that made us feel special. At American Tavern, Sophia was a treat. Her big smile and very sweet personality greeted us for breakfast, and she was very attentive at our table. She sure got our day off to a bright start. On a visit to Sweet and Salty's, we met Ashley, who was herself a treat! Her personality was bright and bubbly, she was very friendly and we thoroughly enjoyed our experience with her. She made sure she went beyond just providing good guest service. At some Sandals resorts, we have been fortunate enough to chat with groundskeepers who were very hard working and proud of the results of their efforts, a bit beyond just keeping things up. Those were memorable experiences with staff who work very hard and take pleasure in what they do and how guests enjoy the results of that effort. On a stroll one day I had the pleasure of having a conversation with Markson, who labelled himself the "nature guy" for both resorts. It was a great chance for me to chat with someone who loved what he does and took immense pride in the results, including the small fish he was introducing into the tiny "ponds" scattered around the grounds. In the course of the conversation we covered topics ranging from Barbados history, geography, US and world politics, human nature, birds, some of his life (and mine) and a few others. All of that within about 30 minutes. Thanks for that opportunity, Markson. Last but certainly not least, our Butlers, Shonika, Arlene and Janere, worked very well as a team and took very good care of us, and despite being inundated with a company group of 150 couples arriving at the same day, they did their best to keep up with everyone. We consider this trip and resort one of the best we have made to any of the 8 Sandals we have visited. And we attribute that to the very friendly and attentive staff, the beautiful grounds, gorgeous beaches and great restaurants. And this is coming from 2 guests who had colds most of the first 7 days of our 10 day trip. Huge thanks to all the staff for making it great! Just prior to departure with a full load, 5 staff members boarded the bus and sung their good-byes to us...that was a first and a very special Barbados tradition.

    Individual ratings:

    Rooms

    Rooms-5

    Service

    Service-5

    Value

    Value-5

    Perfect in EVERY way

    Reviewed by joesandals35(Hamilton, New Jersey) on Feb 18, 2020

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			5
			 out of 5

    We expected a lot from this "newer" Sandals....and Royal Barbados delivered. The grounds are beautiful. The restaurants are the usual high quality found at Sandals. We did have Butler service and Annaleah, Jannel, and Petronia were excellent. Always had our poolside chairs secured and snacks/beverages throughout the day. While they did their jobs so efficiently, it was so much more because of their wonderful personalities and energy! Maid service was excellent in the main building (infinity poolside) as the room was cleaned and maintained promptly during the morning. Poolside beverages always available with Shikira making the rounds ....and her pleasant words to make sure we were comfortable. A special thanks to Demar for attending to our request regarding our room....very professional, polite, and courteous manager. Weather was perfect, as was our ENTIRE week in Royal Barbados

    Good stay overall but disappointing treatment

    Reviewed by Compass66944() on Feb 18, 2020

    		
			TripAdvisor users rated this property 
			3
			 out of 5

    Returned last week from a 9 day stay at this hotel. On the whole we had a great holiday but we felt that we received extremely shabby treatment from certain members of staff on a couple of occasions. We arrived a couple of days before my husband's birthday. We really wanted to eat in one of the a la carte restaurants on the evening of his birthday. These are the restaurants that you need to book. Unfortunately, Sandals have a system in place which means you cannot book these restaurants until you arrive at the resort. We spent the first two days of our holiday trying to book one of these restaurants purely for the night of the birthday. We kept been told by the concierge staff that the system was down and they were unable to book any restaurants. They kept promising to call us back and never did. When the system eventually came back up, they claimed that all the a la carte restaurants were fully booked on the birthday night. We did eventually manage to get into one of the Butch's steak restaurants but only because the kind lady who was working on the front desk of Butch's on that particular evening took pity on us and decided to let us have a table (even though we had no booking). Bearing in mind that Sandals appear to take such pride in the celebration of special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries for their guests, we felt very let down by them. The second problem that we encountered was again with the concierge/reception staff. We asked for an extra hour in our room on the last day and were treated with what can only be described as open hostility and contempt by the lady who worked on reception. This attitude towards guests is completely unacceptable. However, on the plus side, the hotel does have some amazing people working there who really do go out of their way to make your holiday as special as it can be. Aquil at the main pool bar is great and came rushing over to serve us every time we wanted a drink. The guys who work behind the bar at Lovers Lane (I'm sorry I didn't get their names) are also really good. Darren, who served at American Tavern, is extremely helpful and always had a big smile for everybody. Keisha at Chi restaurant is charming and Denise at Neptune's is also very sweet. It's just a shame there are some bad apples working there who are spoiling it for the other members of the team who make such a big effort. The resort is very beautiful with extremely well maintained and stunning plantation everywhere you go. Our room was very clean, modern and a good size. The housekeeping staff are great. The food is really good and there is a great selection of restaurants. The bookable restaurants are the best - we loved Chi and La Parisien. However, all the other restaurants are good too. On the other side of the hotel, Soy does fantastic sushi. We also loved Portofino, great atmosphere and lovely menu. We had lunch in Neptune's pretty much every day and that is a really great spot. So, on the whole, we had a nice time but not sure we will return to this hotel. This was our third visit to this resort and we were not very happy about the way we were treated by certain members of staff. It's not what you want on your holiday.

    Individual ratings:

    Rooms

    Rooms-5

    Service

    Service-3

    Value

    Value-3