The Courtyard Marriott is a "new kid on the block" in Bridgetown - apparently only a couple of years old - so, everything is in good working order, and, as part of the Marriott chain, it is standard Marriott fare in terms of rooms and amenities. However, the staff are almost universally helpful and genuinely interested in the guest's comfort and experience in the hotel. Andree, who works in Reception, is a perfect example of the helpfulness of the staff: on two different occasions on my first day in the hotel, she assisted me - once to make sense of a message that had been left for me at check-in (and she pursued that puzzle until she got an answer), and then helping me with my Intenet connection (I had tried the button for Tech support on the room phone and got an unanswered ringing at attempt one, a recording warning me that I would be paying for an international call on my second attempt, and a recording inviting me to leave a message - which was unanswered - on my third attempt). Andree came to my room and fixed the problem in a matter of minutes, cheerfully and sympathetically ("I had the same problem last week," she told me). She had to come back an hour later when the Internet connection cut out again, and she was equally as helpful and friendly. For the rest of my stay, she made a point of speaking to me every time she saw me, asking how I was, and how my Internet was. A small thing, but important to make one feel welcome.
Almost universally, the staff were welcoming and helpful - an experience one seems to find infrequently in large chain hotels. So, the Courtyard gets a big congratulations for its customer relations.
It does have some challenges, however. Checking in was tedious and time-consuming; there was only one person working on reception and the process seemed complex and challenging for her. Checking in three people - all of whom had reservations and were expected - took more than 20 minutes. And at 9:00 p.m. when the arriving guests were tired and hungry, it was an annoying first impression of the hotel.
The most disappointing feature of the hotel is the arrangement for breakfast: customers have to order from a menu posted on the wall, pay, obtain a receipt and a numbered cardboard "flag" that links to the order and then wait for the order to be delivered. For those staying at the hotel for business purposes in Barbados (and that seemed to be most of the clientele), the necessity to queue to order breakfast (even to get coffee and takeaway items that are already packaged) and get delivery was tedious and time-consuming both mornings I was there. The staff were multi-tasking and trying their best; however, it's the system that is ill-conceived. For those who need a quick breakfast, a buffet is much easier.
Overall, however, the service and ambience of the hotel were more than adequate. What you pay for at the Marriott (and it is somewhat over-priced by international standards, but, then, so is every hotel in Barbados) is the responsiveness of the staff to the guest's needs - and the hotel exceeded my expectations! I would recommend the Courtyard Marriott for its staff responsiveness and cheerfulness, but not for its prices or restaurant (fortunately, there are many other dining choices nearby).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The all new Courtyard by Marriott, Bridgetown is a contemporary 118 room Barbados hotel opened in 2011, featuring well appointed guest rooms accommodation with spacious work areas, plush bedding and complimentary high speed internet access. The hotel is located within the well known Garrison district,and across the street from the beach offering beach access to the Coconut Beach with complimentary lounge chairs for guests. The hotel features an outdoor pool, business center, and restaurant. TGI Fridays and a Spa are located next door. The Courtyard is also a short drive from the famous St. Lawrence's Gap. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Courtyard By Marriott Bridgetown Hotel Bridgetown
- Courtyard By Marriott Bridgetown Barbados