We have just spent an idyllic fortnight holiday a t Blue Waters. It was our second visit, following a gap of several years, but the resort was as marvellous as we remembered it from our first trip there.
The hotel lies at the foot of luxuriantly wooded slopes where the sparkling blue Caribbean washes over white sandy beaches. Facing north-west, the site enjoys beautiful sunsets, more than matching the vivid colours which streak the eastern sky during the morning dawn. The main hotel is enclosed between two small headlands which shelter its two principal beaches from the open ocean, ensuring safe bathing conditions at all times. One of these promontories is capped by Rock Cottage, the hotel’s most prestigious accommodation, operated as a private adjunct to Blue Waters, and to which it belongs. The other terminates seawards at the hotel’s wedding gazebo, the location for several unostentatious but attractive wedding ceremonies. There is a third beach beyond this second headland; it is rather rocky and is more exposed to the open ocean itself, and although it therefore experiences a rather more lively sea than the other two, bathing is still possible here.
Arrival at Blue Waters is an occasion in its own right. We were greeted by Paulette and Margaret, invited to relax in the attractive Reception area, and served a chilled rum punch while simple formalities were completed and our luggage was taken to our room. Such efficiency and helpfulness begins the process of de-stressing, an objective of any holiday. Paulette appears to be around most of the time; she cannot do too much to please and help, and we soon learnt that nothing was too much effort or inconvenience for her when it came to attending to our needs.
The Pelikan bar, the hotel’s principal social gathering venue in the evenings, faces and benefits from warm breezes drifting off the open sea, while its numerous roof fans swirl silently above. In this attractive and comfortable space, friendly waitresses serve an almost infinite variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Shanella (Sunshine) and Raoul (Red Passion) are names to remember here. There is also Veronica’s , a small and pleasant open-air bar overlooking the beach, ideal for a pre-lunch drink; Wingrove, the regular barman here, prepares an amazing range of cocktails, as well as the ubiquitous rum punch. Almost on the sandy strand itself is the tiny Beach Bar, usually staffed by Carolyn, long associated with Blue Waters, and always cheerful, always efficiently helpful.
Our room was classified as deluxe beachfront accommodation. It afforded us a delightful view of the hotel’s principal beach, and was sufficiently close to allow us to listen to the waves breaking across the sand; what luxury on an early, sunny morning! The room has a flat-screen TV with a good range of channels, ample storage space, and a large comfortable double bed. The bathroom is well equipped, and furnished with Elemis products. Our room was spotlessly cleaned every day by a smiling Ritsa, and linen was changed on a frequent and regular basis. There are a range of room types at Blue Waters, ranging from Hillside rooms to the ultimate luxury of the Cove Suites, whilst none are far removed from the Pelikan Bar and the restaurants in the hotel itself.
There are three restaurants in Blue Waters. We preferred the Palm, tranquilly decorated in cool colours; it provides a superb buffet lunch at midday, afternoon tea later, and a la carte dinner in the evening. The waitresses are constantly happy, polite, and obliging. Gaye never seemed to give up attending to our needs. There is also Bartley’s, serving a la carte fusion food, and perhaps the ultimate experience of the Cove Restaurant, where we dined on a number of occasions, gazing out over a floodlit sea and listening to the music of the breakers on the rocks below. A few, very few, guests, wanted to sample restaurants outside Blue Waters; they returned converted in the knowledge that the hotel has a more than brilliant selection of restaurants of its own, serving meals unequalled outside. The chef, Roger, is constantly around, mixing with the diners; he is a genius of invention and presentation.
Blue Waters provides an excellent range of entertainment for its guests, most of which occurs in or around the Pelikan Bar. There are, as might be expected, several steel bands, but also cool jazz, modern vocal, and other musical offerings to please most tastes. Not an evening goes by without something to please and enjoy.
Finally, we re-discovered the gardens. They are beautiful and extensive. Colour abounds everywhere. And for the curious, like ourselves, the gardeners are only too willing to pause and explain the plants, and to advise on their maintenance. There are birds flying and singing everywhere; the pretty sugar birds/yellow breasts appeared to dominate, but we obtained equal pleasure watching humming birds and other species too.
Blue Waters is a haven. It is an unpretentious but marvellous hotel. Whilst what it offers cannot be praised too much, mention should be made of the staff, who ultimately help make the place what it is. They are always warm and welcoming, helpful, obliging – and always joyful. They are too numerous to name individually, although some have been referred to already. Deserving of special mention, too, however, are Anderson Howard, Blue Water’s General Manager, who clearly runs a brilliant show. But most especially for us, Margaret, the Assistant Hotel Manager, in constant attendance, always laughing and cheerful, always so very helpful, so missed upon our departure.
We hope to meet them all again when we return very soon.
Evans, Redhill, Surrey. March 2013
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled in the North West Corner of Antigua where crystal clear waters lap onto secluded white sand beaches, Blue Waters Resort offers an island paradise. From your personal welcome, complete with cooled scented towel and rum punch, you will realise you are our valued guest. Featuring small secluded beach coves, seven freshwater pools and 17 acres of lush tropical gardens, Blue Waters provides the ideal setting for relaxing days by the pool or on the beach, cocktail in hand, or for reading a good book in the shade of the swaying palm trees. Having gently evolved and constantly improved over 50 years we offer a range of luxuriously appointed rooms to meet the needs of our guests, from hillside rooms in a garden setting to beachside rooms with renowned spectacular ocean views. For the more active guest we offer complimentary watersports, tennis and a newly refurbished gym. Our recently opened Elemis Spa and Hair Salon with its stunning ocean views provides a perfect setting for a pampering treatment or as part of a wedding package. Finish the day off dining at one of our 3 restaurants, each with a different ambience to suit your mood. Our staff is ready and waiting to welcome you. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Blue Waters Antigua Hotel St. John`s
- Blue Waters St Johns
- Hotel Blue Waters
- Blue Waters Hotel Antigua
- Blue Waters Antigua Saint John Parish