We chose Sandals Grande Antigua after much research. We knew that we wanted to travel to an all-inclusive resort that was adults-only. For the price of what Sandals offered compared to other places (that looked amazing, but cost thousands more), we chose Sandals. I also spoke to a Sandals representative, and he asked what kind of stay we wanted. The first thing I mentioned was that I wanted beautiful beaches followed by activities, and he recommended Antigua over all of the other resorts. We couldn't have been happier with our stay.
We flew from Norfolk to Miami, and the plane ride from Miami was about 3 hours. When we arrived, we were greeted by island-style singing and music. We quickly found our van transportation to the resort. The driving in Antigua is terrifying, but I suppose most islands are like that. When we arrived, we were greeted with a cold beverage. We did have to wait a little while for our room, but we grabbed some food and drinks and laid out on the beach until it was ready.
The room itself was fabulous. I know it wasn't the most expensive room, but the location was great. Even if you can't afford a room with a view of the ocean (that would obviously have been the best), each room has a pretty garden view. We were on the first floor (it was only a two-story building), but we would hang out on our little patio. I'll never forget mornings - making some coffee and having a quick morning rain roll by - it was unbelievably peaceful. The bathroom was large, and the bed was comfortable. Perfect. Sidenote: we also made friends with the neighborhood cat (nicknamed her "Eleanor" because of the one restaurant at the resort... she would come into our room and hang out sometimes, but don't tell anyone, haha).
After some hanging out that night, I did get a brief bit of nausea. Luckily my husband found some Pepto pills at the gift shop. I woke up the next morning to a brief meeting and a delicious breakfast. Breakfast was probably one of my favorite parts of the stay - the open air area is stunning and the selections from the buffet are vast. Fresh fruits are available, there's an omelet station, and they changed up the other options from day to day. You can have a mimosa right when you walk in too. The birds may try to steal your food, but it's all part of the fun.
We booked some trips through Sandals too. Each one was fabulous in its own way. The first trip was just a half-day trip to the city (St. Johns) to go shopping. We had a blast. The next one was a kayaking/snorkeling/zip-lining excursion. If you do anything while you're on the island, please go zip-lining. It was truly unforgettable. Snorkeling on that trip freaked me out (I had never been before); they drop you off about a mile off-shore. The water was choppy, and I kept hearing Jaws music in my head. I didn't stay out in the water very long, but others saw some really beautiful fish. The last excursion that we did was a boat ride around the island. It's an absolute must. We danced on the boat, drank (obviously), played a game where my husband won a bottle of their "punch" (wow is it strong). They feed you, and you can go snorkeling (this time it was ok, we walked into the water, which was much less terrifying). The crew was SO MUCH fun!
We loved the beach here. I've never experienced anything like it. The water was "Kool-Aid blue," as I refer to it. The waves just lap on shore. It's crystal clear and warm. We did do some of the beach activities that Sandals offers, including the water tricycle and paddle-boarding. It was fun to try paddle-boarding here since the water is so calm. The view while you're out there is stunning - actually all around Sandals is stunning. The cliff off to your right and the vast blue water; it's just amazing. The Sandals resort is beautiful as well. The pathways are lined with flowers, there are pools and fountains everywhere. You'll see plenty of lizards and birds (and cats!). The large swim-up pool is so fun. We met some great people there, both visitors and staff alike. You MUST try the chocolate monkeys - you won't be sorry!
The food at this Sandals was always good. We had a blast at the Japanese steakhouse, Kimonos, where they provide you with so many different types of food... it's really more of an event to go eat there. We enjoyed Eleanor's probably the most. We avoided the Texas steakhouse. I'm mostly vegetarian (I will eat shellfish at times though), but there are plenty of options. You also have to get pizza... we did several times at Bella Napoli. The one with pears is... so good. Barefoot by the Sea is a great little place to grab lunch, but also has a nice ambiance at dinner with your feet in the sand and torches all around (we had both here).
We also enjoyed the entertainment, though I guess the nightlife isn't as crazy as some might like (it was perfect for us). The sun rises and sets pretty early, so we were tired by the time night rolled around. We did partake in a few activities, like watching a guy dance with fire or watching the local talent perform. They were all equally enjoyable and engaging (they brought me up to do hola-hooping with the dancers.,. eek!).
All-in-all this was the time of our lives. I wouldn't trade a second of it. I highly, highly recommend Sandals Grande Antigua to anyone planning their honeymoon or a romantic getaway.
- Also Known As:
- Sandals Grande Antigua Resort And Spa
- Sandals Grande Antigua Hotel St. John`s
- Sandals Antigua
- Sandals Grande Antigua Hotel
- Sandals Grande Antigua
- Hotel Sandals Grande Antigua
- Sandals Grand Antigua
- Antigua Sandals
- Sandals Grande Antigua Resort & Spa Saint John Parish
- 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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