We stayed at North Beach for 10 days in February. I wish I could say stellar things about our experience--considering all of the time and effort we put in to researching Barbuda, and North Beach Cottages in particular. But i can't. And I only wish that I knew what i know now, before venturing out to this very isolated spot....While the grounds are nice, and the seclusion was very welcomed, the "resort" was far from what was promised on line. First off, the food was poor. When reading about North Beach, the menu, as seen on the website, seemed amazing. When we arrived, there was no fresh fish, no fresh lobster (surprising, considering that a fresh caught lobster seems like an east feat, when ur in the middle of the sea), no fresh produce (we were told that the ferry broke down...) and the pickings were slim, to say the least. I have been all over the Caribbean--but something about this place, albeit beautiful, just didn't seem right. There is little, if any effort, to make the guests feel as comfortable and valued as the website indicated. Since you are so isolated, there is no other place to eat---and while the website also said you'd never go hungry, as snacks and drinks abound--that couldn't have been further from the truth. There was little alcohol, and the fruit punch had expired. There were no snacks (and we were there for 10 days...) We actually took a boat ride into town (which cost us a lot of $$$) to make our own drink/snack run--a necessity, since the food was so bad (4 of the nights I couldn't even eat the prepared dinner, and i am not picky...) Ur pretty stranded out there, and there is little room to complain about anything, as you are literally at the mercy of Reuben and one other staff member. While the beach on North Beach is fine (rocky, and a lot of seaweed)--you need to request a special boat ride to see the absolutely SPECTACULAR beaches on the main island of Barbuda --the pink sand beach and Diana's beach between Coco Point and the dilapidated K Club. We spent over 350.00 just getting shuttled to these beaches. Those beaches were so extraordinary, that the sacrifices made, by staying at North Beach, made it ALMOST worth it... Also, be strongly advised that the only airline which runs to Barbuda from Antigua is very spotty and will cancel flights on a whim.
The cottages were sparse, and several times a day the electricity was turned off, along with the water---both without notice. We stayed in the largest cottage, which had a beautiful view from the deck. The cottage, however, is carpeted (old, worn carpet), which was kind of a turn off.
Reuben is a great guy and extremely pleasant--but this place needs so much more work--not only to live up to the promises made on its website, but for me to recommend it to anyone. In my opinion, way over priced for what you get, and we have spent MUCH less on other amazingly beautiful islands, and have gotten MUCH more.
In closing, the North Beach cottage website specifically mentions a homemade chocolate cake served for dessert, which, reportedly, has been raved about by past guests...on our first night, for dessert, we were each given a slice frozen cake, straight from a Pepperidge Farm box. That was the first and last dessert offered during our lengthy stay, and this served as a metaphor of our trip. I wanted so much to love our time in Barbuda, but we feel like we were a bit duped.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- If you dream of having your own secluded Caribbean hideaway, sharing it with family, or another couple, North Beach is for you! Set on a spectacular slice of land located at the northern tip of Barbuda, accessible only by small boat, all-inclusive North Beach allows you to enjoy your own private enclave. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- North Beach Hotel Barbuda
- North Beach Barbuda, Caribbean