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“dream holiday” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts

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Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts
3.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Dickenson Bay | PO Box 251, St. John's, Antigua   |  
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Ranked #11 of 18 Hotels in St. John's
Daventry, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“dream holiday”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

what can i say,where do i start...Just a really lovely holiday ,everything about the island is just beautifull. Myself wife and two boys stayed at the halcyon cove AUG 2012, it was brilliant right from the start, we did have a few moans here and there about noise above and next door but were soon moved to another room but still noisy at nite above us, so not much luck there,staff were always friendly but some behind the bar could do with a bit more smiles,"hey i was asking for a drink thats all".hotel itself could do with a bit of a makeover.The entertainment in the evening could have been alot better,you can sit and chill but theres only so much karaoke you can take....now for the best bits.beutifull beach which was so safe ,lovely warm blue sea water. if your lucky you might even see a few turtles surface now and again further out,the beach itself wasnt crowded,played football volleyball and cricket in the afternoons which was a good crack.Took a few days here and there to look around the island which is a must,such a small island but some great places to see.If you do go and swim with the stingrays just take care there was an incident where a stingray latched itself onto a small lad which didnt look good,the boy was ok thankfully,but very upset..Food in the hotel was good,kids menu needed to be better,the soft drinks were good .,the beer was average could have done better drinking cups,cocktails needed better presentation,would go back but theres a big wide world to explore,met some great people for that 2 weeks and still miss it even now ,just loved it and love looking at our pics

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1,430 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (336)
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English first
Gatineau, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2013

Very nice trip to Antigua, excellent small size hotel, very clean, comfortable king bed, nice room, quick check-in (all included in envelope on arrival), free safety deposit box, ideal for couples or families, nice beach, medium size pool, friendly-helpful and courteous staff, excellent food including very good soup every night, the pool view rooms also has ocean-view. We will definitely stay again at this cozy hotel. The catamaran tour was fun with good food. The jeep tour was only OK with BAD food. The stingray tour was marvelous.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
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Kitchener, Canada
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2013

This was my 3rd visit to the Halcyon, and I must say...just as fantastic as always! Food is fantastic, Dale is an amazing chef, and for a night out and about, he owns a little pub/bar called The Palms that is not far from Sandals. The staff is like staff nowhere else, friendly, cheery, always full of compliments! Kema is a super fantastic waitress, Errol-best bartender in the Caribbean (probably in the world but lets stick with just the Caribbean). The Assistant manager, Devon, ensures you have a great stay. There are so many people to mention...Mario, crazy Fenton, insane Michael...so on and so on. Like previous reviews, if you want a 5 star, don't stay here. This is a 3 star (but for those used to Cuba, this is a 5 star there for sure). A little rustic but cute with amazing people-that makes the vacation.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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North Bay, Canada
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

I absolutely LOVED this place and its staff, and I would go back in a heart beat! I had not been on a holiday like this in 23 years and I went to relax, soak up the sun/beach, and I got all of that. I was told not to expect fancy beforehand and the hotel exceeded my expectations. I don't care much for all the bells and whistles that a 5 star hotel would offer - I didn't go on this vacation for all of that. What I cared most about was always there .. amazingly warm staff who are always smiling and saying hello every time they see you, great food, and a clean room. And it`s nice and close to the airport too - for those of you who don`t like a long shuttle ride from the airport to the hotel. Could the resort use a facelift? Yes it could, but there is nothing else I would change.

Special shout outs to Jackie who holds a special place in our hearts, our funny and friendly bartenders Errol, Dalton, Brian and Allick who always made us laugh, our amazing waitresses Roxanne, Heather (all of you), our smiling and singing Devon, Dr. Fenton lol, and the wonderful Chef Dale and his staff who prepared wonderful meals and made sure we always had more than enough to eat.

The staff at the Halcyon Cove are the ones who make this resort the special place that it is. Thank you so much for making my vacation one I will treasure forever. I will definitely be back!!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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North Bay, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2013

Well I`ve just returned from the Halcyon cove in Antigua, this is my second time going. Let me start by saying that if you want a five star hotel then pay for a five star hotel. This is rated as a three star and is clearly a 3 star, but it`s a three star with some charm and you can`t help but like your stay. The rooms are clean, large, nothing fancy about them, but for the amount of time you spend in your room it does the trick. You will read that the hotel is somewhat tired and dated, and that is correct, could use a bit of a facelift but don't let that stop you from visiting this little gem. What it lacks in appearance it makes up with in charm. The staff go out of their way to make you smile......special shout out to Errol, the most entertaining of the bartenders; shout out to Roxanne, Kema and Heather who are wonderful waitresses at the resort. Special shout out to Chef Dale who went out of his way to accommodate client requests and to Eggbert who always gives you a warm smile when at the food station. Last and certainly not least special mention of Jacqui in the towel booth who really should be working in another area, as she is smart and extremely outgoing with customer. To Fenton, Mr. Entertainment, always funny and stirring things up around the resort.
To one of the owner, may she set a better example when dealing with customers, I witnessed her display extreme rudeness to a customer who was trying to engage in conversation with her at breakfast. She was dismissive and cut off the conversation with her abruptly and rudely for all to see. If you staff behaved in such a manner you would not have customers attending your resort, you may want to learn from them, and think of what your behaviour leaves your customers thinking of you. Shame shame

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
175 helpful votes 175 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2013

We spent one week at Halcyon Cove, April 6-13, taking advantage of a good price for our stay.
This is a 3 star resort, and while it is a bit tired and has obviously seen better days, we had a lovely time.


Beach:
In a word, it is simply the best! There is a roped-off area for swimmers. The water is clean, refreshing, and very calm. The beach is raked every morning. Halcyon Cove amenities include free use of snorkeling gear, kayaks, wind surfboards and Hobie-cat sailing boats.

The resort is located at one end of Dickenson Bay, which makes it quite private. Luckily the cruise ship lemmings gather just on the other side of the Warri Pier, where they are then stacked like sardines in 10-12 rows of lounge chairs. Most of them stay in that area, or they walk the other way past the sprawling Sandals resort to the other end of Dickenson Bay.
Food is supplied to the cruise ship people by Halcyon Cove (if arranged), but is separate from the guests staying at the hotel. Sometimes the lemmings are fed in the Warri Pier restaurant, other times coolers with food are brought to them on the beach. They do pass through the pool area on their way to the beach. We were never aware of these people as most of the time we spent on the beach.

Towels:
When you arrive, you’re given a chit in order to get your beach towels. Between 9-11 and 3-5 every day, you can pick up or exchange your towels. The towels were clean, they were thick (not paper thin as someone else mentioned); they were your everyday towels and they did the job just fine.

Room:
We upgraded from a garden room to an ocean-front room, and while the view was of course much nicer, the room was smaller. But the toilet was new, the bath had a large shower-head with the rainfall effect, and there was good water pressure. Conveniently, the sink area is separate from the toilet and shower.
The king-size bed was comfortable; the sheets were clean and soft. There was a large desk with a small chair to sit on, and above it a large mirror. A dresser there would have been of more use, but we just put all of our clothing in the closet, either on hangers or on the shelves.
There was a safe in the room and it was easy to operate.
We never spend very much time in the room anyway, we’re here for the sun, the sand and the beach!

The Food:
The food was abundant, and there was quite a variety.
Breakfasts: eggs to order, bacon, sausage, pancakes, muffins and pastries, toast and jam, yoghurt and fruit, tea and coffee and juices.
Lunches: French fries, a rice dish, spiced chicken in sauce, fresh vegetables, pizza, soup, salads – bean, pasta, and lettuce, fresh fish and hamburgers and cheeseburgers on the grill, and cakes and ice cream for dessert.
Dinners: 3-4 vegetable dishes, chicken, pork, beef, fish, soups, salads, fresh bread, a pasta dish, and of course cakes and pastries for dessert. Wine was served as well as tea and coffee. The staff were very attentive with the wine, always topping up your glass.

The only negatives I would say would be the lack of variety of fresh fruits at breakfasts, and not much variety of fresh fish (at least not during the week we were there). Tilapia was in great supply though! We had dinner one night on the Warri Pier, and as I perused the menu, I was pleased to see mahi-mahi as an entree choice.

“Oh yes please, I’ll have the mahi-mahi!”
“Sorry. No mahi-mahi tonight.”
“Oh…what kind of fish then?”
“Tilapia.”
Ugh!

But still, the breakfasts, lunch and dinners had so much to choose from that you couldn’t go hungry. One lunchtime the grill stopped working, and from the gasps and cries from some of the guests, you’d have thought the world had ended.
Of course these gasps were coming from the cheeseburger/french-fries crowd, “OMG, no burgers? But I’m starving!”

I think not.

Later in the afternoon, I overheard a staff member ask a guest, “And how is your holiday? Did you enjoy your lunch?” The woman replied, “Well! Not really. The grill broke! I didn’t come on holiday to be stressed!”
Stressed? Because you didn’t get your daily cheeseburger?

Others have said that there is nothing to eat in between lunch and dinner. That is simply not true. At the Warri Pier, everyday from 3.30-5.30, there is afternoon tea. Sandwiches, cakes and scones are served, as well as tea and coffee. The Warri Pier overlooks the ocean, and with the gentle breezes coming through, it’s a lovely spot to sit and relax with a cup of tea and a small snack.

The staggering amount of food that is served at breakfast, lunch and dinner is enough to feed an army. If anyone says they’re hungry, well sorry, you are eating TOO MUCH.
And please, stop using the word starving. None of us are starving.


Drinks
Bar drinks were lovely. Try some of the mixed drinks they have advertised above the beach bar. The bar liquor was NEVER watered down; on the contrary, I’d have to ask for a glass of ice along with my drink, as there is no such thing as a shot glass used by any of the bar staff! It was just pour, pour pour….oh, I think that’s a shot (or 3)!

There is a small bar in the reception area, but we did not use it. The pool table there has seen better days, but I didn’t come on holiday to play pool. It was mentioned by someone that there was water around the pool table, (no doubt after a brief rainfall). This was so upsetting to you that it ruined your holiday?

Entertainment and Staff:
The entertainment was just OK. Not many people seemed to stay up very late (including us), but when we did there were no more than 20 people listening to the bands.
Personally after a long day in the sun and sea, bed-time comes early anyway.

The staff were brilliant. Whenever we had any concerns they were very helpful. We have no complaints at all about any of them. Maid service was amazing; I even had a lovely woman ask me if I had any laundry that needed done!


Finally, it’s been my experience that a holiday is what you make of it. An arrogant attitude, as expressed in many of the negative reviews of Halcyon Cove, will get you nowhere. If you smile and say hello, and lose the first world airs of us vs. them – and stop demanding, then you’ll be treated with respect and kindness. If you go on holiday expecting to be treated like royalty, please stay away from these smaller, friendlier resorts – stay where you belong, with the mass throngs of tourists heading for the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Cuba.

I for one am happy to be part of the 3-star club.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Bonne Bay, Canada
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2013

I had spent 2 weeks there for Christmas/New Years. Upon entering my room, I was delighted to see my bed and bathroom vanity artfully decorated with fresh hybiscus flowers and petals. There was a bottle of chilled champagne and a letter from the manager welcoming me back to my "home away from home". And that's exactly what it is - my home away from home.
I've just returned from another visit there - my 9th. The staff know me by name and treat me like family. Of course, they treat everyone special and go out of their way to make sure you know that they enjoy you being there. I would mention some by name but that would hardly be fair as all of them are the best!
I've always enjoyed the food and entertainment, but I have to say that the past two visits (within 3 months!) I found that the entertainment was the best yet. Evenings at the Carib bar had everyone dancing to the great musical entertainment. I'm not one for buffets but my last trip in particular I found the food absolutely delicious. There's a new executive chef (Dale) and I have to commend him for the great job he's doing. I had eaten out in the evenings fairly often, but this trip I was enticed by the wonderful food to eat at the Arwark Terrace most of the time.
I met quite a few repeat visitors and without exception, every first time visitor I spoke to said that they'd be back. Those visiting for one week were sorry for not booking 2 weeks within the first couple of days.
Definitely highly recommend visiting there and looking forward to my 10th. visit!!

Room Tip: Poolside is my favorite location!
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts

Address: Dickenson Bay | PO Box 251, St. John's, Antigua
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint John Parish > St. John's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 On the Beach Hotel in St. John's
#9 Top resorts Hotel in St. John's
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts 3*
Number of rooms: 181
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoying a pristine picture postcard beach front location, the Halcyon Cove by rex resorts offers the very essence of a perfect Caribbean setting. Beautiful glistening waters gently lap at the palm-fringed white sands of Dickenson Bay where guests can recline beneath the palm-frond parasols or exert some energy on a variety of water sports. International buffet breakfast and dinner cuisine is served at the Arawak Terrace restaurant or treat yourself at the Warri Pier a-la-carte restaurant featuring speciality grills and lobster in its unique setting over the sea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Halcyon Cove By Rex Hotel St. John`s
Halcyon Cove Antigua
Halcyon Cove By Rex Resorts Antigua/Saint John Parish
Rex Halcyon Cove Resort
Rex Halcyon Antigua

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