Where to begin!
Pro's: The property is every bit as good as the pictures. The place is kept very clean, is very nice looking, and given the setting by the beach - is truly a little piece of paradise. The included activities were a BIG bonus: snorkeling, paddle boarding, kayaking, sailing, tennis, volleyball, etc. were all free and readily accessible. We were never bored! The entertainment staff is hilarious: Emmanuel and Antonio kept the mood quite festive. Can I mention the grounds again? What a tremendously beautiful place. There were several food options and drinks were more than readily available (all kinds of concoctions!)
Con's: 1) Too many rules to get food at night! If you are not wearing recommended attire (IE shorts) at night and don't have reservations, it is actually hard to get food without waiting a long time for a table. This was frustrating on the first day as we couldn't actually find a place that would give us food. After finally finding the one place that would serve us without a long wait, it still took an hour and a half to actually get our food. Then it was small portions (we learned to order two entrees for every meal). I ended up begging a bartender for a banana that night. :-( 2) Inconsistent service. There is complete truth to the reviews that reflect some poor service here. Don't come to Sandals Antigua expecting service that's at the level of basic restaurants like Chili's or Applebees - you won't get it. It's more like McDonalds. Friendly enough, but in no hurry to really meet your needs. Don't get me wrong, there were several staff members that were very friendly and looking out for us, but just as many or more that were just there to do their job. I greeted everyone with a smile and a "how are you"? But often was reciprocated by blank faces; reducing our communication to more of a 'what do you want'. 3) Noise, whether you like it or not - you are up at 9:00 am (on the Caribbean side) as they start their site maintenance promptly at 9:00 am local time. Leaf blowers, hammers, what-sounded-like-chainsaws were in full use making sleep impossible after 9:00am. 4) Long check in process (30 - 45 minutes)
Overall: Once you learn the rules of food (especially dinner), are aggressive about making reservations early to fill up your nights and learn what staff members to work with - this can really be a bit of paradise! I wouldn't go again as a couple (too expensive) but as a group, it was really amazing.
Hope this helps!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- •A European Hotel in the Six-Star, all-suite Mediterranean Village •Exotic Rondoval with private plunge pool and butler service •1,400 square foot Mediterranean villa with private plunge pool and butler service•Houses the East Caribbean's largest pool (1 of 6) •Offers 9 dining options and 8 bars including an English pub •Voted "World's Most Romantic Resort" 14 years in a row ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sandals Grande Antigua Hotel St. John`s
- Sandals Grande Antigua Resort And Spa
- Sandals Antigua
- Hotel Sandals Grande Antigua
- Sandals Grand Antigua
- Antigua Sandals
- Sandals Grande Antigua Resort & Spa Saint John Parish