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“Jolly Beach was Jolly good” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Jolly Beach Resort & Spa

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Jolly Beach Resort & Spa
3.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Bolans Village, Bolans, Saint Mary's, Antigua   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #4 of 4 hotels in Bolans
Fonthill, Ontario, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Jolly Beach was Jolly good”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

Just returned from 2 weeks in Feb 2013. First impressions when we arrived late on Sat. were mixed,we knew the super saver rooms where going to be small ,but boy where they small. But we soon got used to it and started to realize the benefits of this old resort. The balconies were great and the walls were thick(no noise from adjacent rooms) so really it was just fine.
We really can't understand the bad reviews about the food or the,restaurants we found you could always find something tasty at the buffet and the al carte were fantastic. a note to the toronto sat. arrivals you will be too late to book the brunch at Lidia,s on sunday but don't worry you can fluff your way in no problem, just be kind and tell them you lost your ticket they will ask you to wait at the bar have drink and will find you a table. It is well worth the wait,as the food is fantastic.
The bar staff is the best we have ever encountered fast and friendly,they seemed to have figured out the busy times just right as there was extra staff at just the right times. Robin,Neil, Real, Clovis and all the others made us feel like family every day.
The beach was amazing
I would recommend
attending the orientation briefing as Anna has some good tips that we felt were really helpful. Do not hesitate on booking this trip,a beautiful island and kind friendly people. Thank you trip advisor for the tips on the jerk chicken at the grill. AMAZING.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (528)
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Wales
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

My wife and I stayed in Jolly Beach from the 18th to the 30th January.We arrived at the hotel tired and hot. We found the reception staff to be most unhelpful, wanted extra money for hotel safe which is not advertised. The reason they gave was that the safes are rented from an external company. I asked to speak to the general manager and was told he was unavailable.Looking at some of the complaints on here where the manager has replied he has said just ask and we'll try to fix it well judging by my experience people are asking and the complaints are going no further than the reception staff. The rest of the staff were great the gardens and pool were kept very clean, bar staff very polite they have been said to be rude in other reviews I wouldn't blame them myself when you get a guest at the bar saying Two beers and Mudslide without a please or a thank you good manners go a long way, a thing a lot, not all of our north America cousin's could do with a lesson in. Our room was excellent, king size bed and refurbished bathroom. The food in all restaurants was very good, as was the service. All apart from Hemispheres where there is no structure to the serving system. An example of this is waitresses walking around with coffee pots whilst there were no cups on tables to pour it into.
Went to the gym and found it one of the best of the Caribbean hotels I have stayed in ok a couple of the treadmills were broken so what every thing else was fine.
Evening entertainment had a good variety of shows where the entertainment staff worked hard and again the best by far of the Caribbean hotels I have stayed. Daytime activities were also good if you wanted to join in.
My advice to anyone who has a genuine complaint is to ask to speak to the general manager. Don't be fobbed off by the reception staff, once they realise you aren't going to go away their attitude will improve. I found the general manager to be most helpful when I eventually got to see him.

Room Tip: You get what you pay for and don't be smart and try to upgrade at the hotel as it will cost you...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orrville, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

Beautiful 40 acre property with numerous pools, bars and restaurants. Your vacation is what you
make it...so don't believe the whiners! You don't need exclusive amenities here, they are provided
by the environment and staff. The cottages are beautiful and we never spent a dime for food all week.

Room Tip: There are about 20 buildings with rooms on this property
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2013 via mobile

Well we knew that the rooms were a little tired but opted to go with resort as we really come for the sun and the beach. No fridge in the standard rooms and a cost of $200 US for a 2 week stay. I could buy a bar fridge for that price. $3.00 a day for a lock for your safe. I thought this was an all inclusive resort. You get nickel and dimed. The maid service is horrible. One day I had to go looking for toilet paper because none was left in the bathroom. The sinks are not cleaned on a regular basis, if ever. I have been looking at the same dead fly on the sink for days. They remove your dirty glasses and then don't replace them; try finding a glass and not a plastic half shot tumbler. No klenix has been replaced. You have to shower by a certain time or else you are stuck with a cold shower. We had to buy my own astray for the balcony at a cost of $9.00 US from the gift store. You have to get up so early just to find a beach chair. I am on vacation and don't feel like getting up at 7:00 am to find a beach chair. I have heard stories about people having to get up early to get chairs but this is the first time I have actually experienced this. Did I mention that about 50% of the chairs are broken not to mention really dirty. The staff in the dining room are very rude and nobody seems to know what their jobs are. Last night and this morning the hostess puts us in an area where we were not even served. Tell me why a gym is only open for a few hours in the morning and then a few hours after 4:00 pm? Most resorts leave gyms open all day long. You can not even have breakfast and then work out if you are not an early riser. Again I am on vacation and don't appreciate my time being dictated by a hotel that I spend money to come to. The food is not half bad, not always the best selection but that's okay. We have not been to the restaurants yet so I can't respond on that. When you walk around the property all you hear are complaints made by the vacationers about something of another. No ice machines around the resort. Well I could go on and on but you can get the gist of the resort. Did I mention that the beach is beautiful.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville, Tennessee
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 28, 2013

I recently returned from a 6 night vacation at Jolly with my husband. We absolutley loved the beach. The view is amazing and the best beach that we saw there. I agree don't expect luxury but hey...you didn't pay for luxury. I thought that it was a great vacation for the money. The last trip that we took was all luxury but was alot more money and the beach was not even close to the beauty of this beach. We went to Lydia's the first night and they did have things that were supplemental such as lobster that was $25 extra; however, they were out of it. I wasn't that impressed with the restaurant. We went to the Indian restaurant on the 5th night that we were there and I did not enjoy it at all. The lamb was mostly bone and gritty. I would have rather have eaten the buffet. We had the Italian on the last night and it was the best. It is hard to get reservations at first but they will work with you and get you in before you leave. The buffet was also good for the money.The only complaint was they ran out off glasses almost every time that we were there.The grill does not open on time and does take a while to get started but did enjoy the jerk chicken and the ham/cheese sandwich.They had watersports but we just enjoyed the beach. We did go on the Creole Cruise booked through the hotel and it was wonderful.....we snorkled and had a lobster dinner on Bird Island!!! We also went out on AnaCondaTwist Watersports boat on a fishing trip were we got lobster, fish, and conch. They brought it back and grilled it on the beach for us.They are located on the beach and it was fun also. The hotel does look older and when they say standard room they mean it...no fridge and very small but we came for the beach not the room so we didn't spend much time in the room anyway. The bed is also a bit hard but it didn't keep me from sleeping like a baby.Neil at the bar was a great bartender he was always happy and dancing. It is so nice to see a person that loves their job!!! I would recommend taking a thermos or larger cup with you because the glasses that they serve drings in are very small. We went to the local store and bought solo cups so we didn't have to make so many trips to the bar. You do have to get to the beach before 8:00 to get chairs because people do put towels out to save them but that happened at the last resort where we stayed. Overall I would stay all over again and totally enjoyed our vacation. Everyone was very friendly and had no problems with the room.

Room Tip: We had a standard room with a oceanview but close to the bar and everything. It was a bit noisy at t...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

Reception was only manned by two staff when we arrived causing a long queue to check in. The arrival of a large number of clients must have been known by the resort as, with few exceptions, the daily landing of flights is known.
Maintenance does not make a profit so it is not surprising that two other couples and ourselves had to move room as either the pluming did not produce water or the lights failed.
The Italian Restaurant did not have any emergency lighting, not even a candle, when the lights failed on three occasions when we were trying to eat dinner (twice in one evening)- the emergency exit lights did not switch on automatically when main lights failed. Perhaps an emergency generator would be a good idea as well as wiring in the emergency lighting!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
JollyManager, General Manager at Jolly Beach Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 8, 2013
Good Day 300Marsh,

My sincere apologies that there was a power outage during your dining experience. We do have our own backup generator at the resort should there be any power issues on-island and normally it comes on without delay throughout our 40-acre property. Unfortunately this was one of those exceptional occasions where anything that could go wrong, did and there was an unusual delay in getting the backup generator running. I’m happy though that this was something that we rectified very quickly which allowed our guests to continue dining.

Regards,

Vernon A. Jeffers, Sr
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Poulton Le Fylde, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

I agree absolutely with Mike of Ohio's opinions of the Jolly Beach Resort. After reading other Trip Advisor reports we decided to go there anyway - the beach pulled me in! - I DO like comfortable rooms and good food - neither of which were up to much, and the sun bed and shade situation on the beach IS dreadful, but after a few days I really warmed to the place and the people we met there. Let's face it, it was still very good value for money and if I did have to holiday on a budget I've seen nothing better for value.

I have to say a big thankyou to Linette, the resident nurse, who took very good care of me after a little accident I had, she is a real sweetheart.

I can only echo Mike's final remark, don't expect too much in the way of luxury, but the experience is what you youself make of it - go and enjoy!

p.s. - MESSAGE to MIKE? - this 60 year old lady wants to know how do I get in touch with you?

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Jolly Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Bolans Village, Bolans, Saint Mary's, Antigua
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint Mary's > Bolans
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 4 hotels in Bolans
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Jolly Beach Resort & Spa 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The all-inclusive, 464-room Jolly Beach is an exceptional Caribbean experience. Resort offers great year-round value for destination weddings, honeymooners and families. Rates include accommodations, government taxes and service charges, all meals, snacks and afternoon tea, house brand beverages, non-motorized watersports, activities, Jolly Kidz and Teenz Clubs, Think Jolly Family Program, use of the gym and entertainment. All rooms are air-conditioned and face the ocean; each has a patio or balcony, direct-dial phone, TV and hair-dryer. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Jolly Beach Hotel Bolans
Jolly Beach Resort And Spa
Jolly Beach Resort Antigua
Jolly Beach Resort All Inclusive
Jolly Beach Antigua
Jolly Beach Resort & Spa Antigua/Bolans

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