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“Not Heaven on Earth, but a very, very good holiday regardless!!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Maca Bana

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Maca Bana
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Magazine Beach | P.O. Box 496, Point Salines, St. George's, Grenada   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #7 of 23 Hotels in St. George's
London
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
“Not Heaven on Earth, but a very, very good holiday regardless!!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2010

We returned a week ago from our second holiday in Grenada and our seventh to the Caribbean. Previously we have stayed all inclusive (last year at Spice Island and the previous year Galley Bay Antigua) but this year decided we would try room only so we could get out on our own and eat in a variety of the places we had been reading about. After checking out the reviews on TripAdvisor we decided on Maca Bana.
On arrival it was a bit of a culture shock, no flash hotel reception with cold drinks and cold towels while we signed in. Instead an obvious working office stacked with all the things needed in a small resort. Check in was swift, friendly and painless. Michaela, the general manager, then walked us to our room. As we are a couple rather than a larger family group we had opted for a one bedroom unit, having seen the photos online we had hoped for Paw Paw and thats what we got.
Our first impression of Maca Bana was how small it was with very little space between the buildings, Paw Paw is the furthest out and the most private. When we reached it again our first impression was how small it was, the kitchen is small (we found it very dark with far to much equipment for two of us), the bedroom is of a good size filled with a huge bed and the bathroom is fine for two people but without the luxury you find at either Spice Island or Gally Bay. What was missing was somewhere to sit inside, we did have some rainy days and found ourselves laying on the bed reading.
The airport is very, very close. I walked to the terminal to use a cash machine and back in 15 minutes. Previous reviewers have stated you cannot hear the planes, wrong you hear them all. They don't disturb you and its certainly less aircraft noise than our home in central London but you can hear them. Whats more disturbing is leaving your room after dark for the first time and seeing flashing red lights everywhere (in London it would have been at least the scene of a murder) its quite a relief to find its only navigation lights at the airport.
I'm trying to write an honest review of Maca Bana and it is not intended to be negative but visitors should realise its not going to be a 5 star resort like Spice. It is however a lovely place for a holiday.
On our first night we walked down and ate at the Aquarium, we loved it. The food was great and the staff wonderful. As we began to relax we started to love our little room and not feel constricted. We did use the infinity pool but it was much easier just to relax in the hot tub with a cold bottle. We did get out and eat at a variety of places (Aquarium, Boots, BB's, Nutmeg, Estuary, Grillmaster etc) and we spent one day on Carriacou.
If I had to list the best things about Maca Bana I would say number one is the staff, by the end of our holiday we had really grown fond of Michaela. She is cheerful, helpful and always there. The young woman from housekeeping who looked after Paw Paw was wonderful, such a lovely person and so efficient. And all the guys doing the gardens and maintenance always cheerful and friendly.
Number two would be the view. The view from Paw Paw is stunning and there is a view 24 hours a day, I could lay in bed and see the lights on the carenage 4 or 5 miles away. Number three the hot tub, lovely spending an hour or so in there as it gets dark watching the lights in town come on before showering and going for dinner.
Number four is having the Aquarium and beach bar on site, good food, lovely staff and being able to charge it!!
Number five would be magazine beach, we often walked along it and found we were the only people there. We happily left our belongings on our loungers and Boss who rents these and his friend with the craft stall made sure everything was safe.
Two negative things would be the hill between Maca Bana and the Aquarium/beach. No problem going down but after a couple of hours in the sun and a couple of cold pints it was a killer!! but then we are a couple in our sixties. And the location, it has the views and beach to die for but there is a price to pay. Nothing is close by (but the airport) you need a car to get anywhere. We made a mistake and only hired a car on our last three days. This meant everytime we needed to shop, go out to eat, visit town we had to take a taxi so everything was 100$ec more than you counted. If/when we return we would take a car from day one.
All in all our holiday was wonderful, once we relaxed and got out of the London frame of mind we enjoyed every minute. I would happily of stayed another two weeks. Maca Bana is not some sort of mystical place as described in some reviews. It is however a beautiful spot to holiday in very comfortable surroundings.
Would I go back? In a flash.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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102 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
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English first
Chapala, Mexico
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2010

Maca Bana Review

After reading rave reviews about the Maca Bana Villas in Grenada, we were expecting something pretty spectacular. In terms of views, we were not disappointed. We were at the Villas for nine nights – the first four in Mango and the last five in Paw Paw. Upon arrival, we found fresh flowers everywhere and a sufficient amount of breakfast food for a few days, including a basket of fruit.

There were other very good things about these accommodations, but there were also disappointments.

Mango is a 2-bedroom villa on one level. The second bedroom is locked when a couple rents one of these 2-bedroom villas, so we can’t comment on that bedroom. The villa seemed to be one of the more private of the 2-bedroom villas. It has a huge wrap-around deck with plenty of room for two eating areas, five chaise lounges and a rocker. There is also a good-sized hot tub at the corner of the deck, easily accessible from the main bedroom. Unfortunately, we could not get the jets to work while we stayed there, and it being a holiday weekend, it was not possible to get the hot tub serviced.

The kitchen in Mango was, as advertised, definitely a gourmet delight. It was clearly adequate for Lorey, a chef from the Aquarium Restaurant below the Villas, to cater a dinner for us right in the villa kitchen. That was a special treat for our 50th anniversary (the second night of our stay) and included rack of lamb for me and steak for my husband with delicious accompaniments for each of us. No need to grab a taxi or walk down the hill. Just sit and enjoy the ambience of our terrace, the lights of St. George’s in the distance and the smells of the meal about to come.

That said, cooking a gourmet meal in the kitchen would not have been very pleasurable. Although the bedroom is air conditioned, the kitchen/dining space is not. There is not even an overhead fan in that part of the villa. With a wall outside the two small kitchen windows, it isn’t even possible to get much of a cross breeze effect. It was a very hot and uncomfortable area. If there were mosquitoes to contend with, it would be beyond unbearable as there is no screening on the patio doors from this area of the villa.

There are large screen TV’s in the main bedrooms. I don’t know about the second bedroom. They are mounted quite high on the wall and can really only be watched while in an awkward reclining position in bed. Fortunately, the beds in both villas were quite comfortable.

Our luggage arrived two days late, so we had to use the laundry facilities almost immediately. These are only available with the 2-bedroom villas. The washer and dryer are both very small. The wash cycle took one hour. The dryer was a disaster. After an hour and 20 minutes, our clothing was very hot and still very wet. The next day, we had a similar experience. We decided we had to iron the clothes in order to have something to wear for our catered dinner. The ironing board and iron had to be carted into the villa because there was no outlet for the iron in the laundry building. The ironing board was old and apparently damaged enough that it could not be folded up for moving.

Internet was available in both villas, but we had a very hard time getting our adapter into the wall outlets. Our plugs seemed just a little too square. We did make it work with a lot of force. In addition, I had some problems with the internet that I thought was my computer, but I have not had those problems since returning home.

The bathrooms are lovely. I preferred the Paw Paw shower to that in the Mango. The Mango shower is a quarter round style with very short side walls of glass block. The shower head had only a focused spray, so it was not a warm, cozy experience. Paw Paw’s shower is a little more enclosed and has a better shower head. For even more of an enclosed feeling, the toilet room door can be folded back in front of the shower.

There is plenty of drawer space in the vanities and two separate sinks with mirrored medicine chests above. But I was a bit dismayed with the mirror in Paw Paw. It was badly cracked on the lower corner where I would normally push to open. Inadvertently, I put my hand on that part of the mirror to close it a couple of times and almost cut myself. I mentioned this to the manager and was told it happened in the hurricane. I assume she meant Hurricane Ivan. That was almost 6 years ago. It’s the kind of thing that an upscale place should repair immediately - not let stand for several years.

I had the same feeling about the swimming pool. Nice shape; nice fountain; wonderful view. But it’s full of black spots around the tile grout and there is at least one large area of missing tile on the bottom. Again, I did not notice this until I stepped on some of the loose tile and hurt my foot. I have been told that it is scheduled to be redone when the rains come again.

The grounds are nicely done with fountains and a turtle pool up above the pool, but not all lights were working, and one does have to pay attention to the steps. The step risers are not all the same height. Particularly troubling was the fact that the lights were all off the morning we left. We had an early flight and had to negotiate those steps with our luggage in the dark. This, to me, is really inexcusable. Other parts of the property had lights on sensors but not along the path we had to take (which included quite a few steps) to get to the taxi.

Paw Paw is advertised as a one bedroom. I would call it a studio. It has a much smaller feel to it, although the bedroom has a beautiful window seat overlooking the water and coast line. The bed is high enough that it, too, has a wonderful view.

The kitchen is about one-fourth the size of that in Mango. There is no dishwasher, but that is not really needed. House-keeping takes care of dishes. My biggest complaint about the kitchen is the lighting. There are under cabinet lights and a light in the range hood, but there is no overhead light. It made it difficult for our older eyes to see what we were doing at night.

The patio outside the Paw Paw bedroom is also very small compared to that at Mango. We liked the little eating area which seemed to get a good breeze and was shaded. The hot tub has the best view on the property, I’m sure. But it was not possible to sit side by side on the chaises in the middle of the day and both keep shaded. Also, I don’t think any of the villas would have had a view of the sunset since the orientation is toward the northeast.

Grenada is a lovely, lush island with, I am sure, many great restaurants to sample. However, be aware that taxis are very expensive, and Maca Bana Villas is quite isolated from stores, restaurants (other than The Aquarium … which is very good, but it’s nice to try different places), food shopping and things to do on the island. It is near the airport, but catching a mini bus that far away from the more central town and tourist areas is not that easy.

All-in-all, if you can afford frequent taxis or want to venture off in a rental car (not cheap, and the left-hand driving is more than a little crazy on the island), then the location will not be a deterrent to your enjoyment of Grenada.

Maca Bana Villas could be the truly luxury beautiful place it is advertised to be, but to us the value is not there for the rates we paid for the reasons indicated above. When I pay over $150 per night (and these were 3-4 times that), I expect good lighting, good air control, no broken items, a clean pool and advertised appliances to work. I have given it 4 out of 5 but would have preferred to give it a 3.5.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hereford UK
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2010

Having just returned from a short 3 day stay Maca Bana Villas at the end of a 3 week holiday, we wanted to add our praise to the previous recommendations.
This is a very different holiday experience to the ‘normal’ luxury hotel stay. The Maca Bana Villas are indeed a little piece of Heaven on Earth. What else can you say when you have your own a fabulous fully equipped & well appointed kitchen with every conceivable gadget, a lovely bathroom with double basins, and bedrooms with 7ft wide beds! Add to this the private Jacuzzi, garden area & out-door lounge, plus the infinity swimming pool, gardens with waterfalls complete with terrapins and you know have found something really special.
High up, the views to St.George’s Bay and the mountains beyond are amazing. Then there's Magazine Beach below, which is one of, if not the best beach on Grenada and a terrific restaurant right there.
The services by the friendly staff were very discrete & efficient. Michaela is a superb manager & is extremely helpful & personable.
Our stay at Maca Bana Villas (we had the Pineapple villa) definitely exceeded our expectations. We would love to return one day - but for longer next time!
'Memories are Forever'
Malcolm & Wendy
Hereford
UK

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2010

Asked travel agent to book a week in a villa after reading the reviews on Trip Advisor. At one point felt that the reviews were too good to be true but agent confirmed that it was a piece of paradise on earth. On arrival at the airport, we were offered a complimentary pick up to the hotel, it is only 2 minutes by car. We were welcomed by the Manager, Ms Michaela who gave us a quick tour. We stayed in the Coconut bana, to our opinion the one with the best view of the Magazine beach. The bana was spacious, comfortable and made you feel that you were on holidays. We tried to spend minimum time at the bana except when resting but we have good memories of having breakfast on the big balcony, relaxing in the hot tub, make breakfast in the kitchen,having dinner outside and watching the cruise ship leave. The staff at the hotel were great, non-intrusive but helpful.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Durham NC
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
85 helpful votes 85 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2010

If you are looking for "perfect"...this is pretty darn close!! The service is charming and impeccable- we arrived late and Mikhala (apologies to her for any misspellings) was still waiting after the driver picked us up and took us to the local supermarket before it closed...she checked us in and gave a lovely tour of our place- we were in the Cherry for 4 nights and the Mango for 1... The villas are sparkling clean and well laid out with large bathrooms and serious kitchens, lots of storage space,lovely toiletries, hair dryers, and a 24 hour !!!! contact number if anything is needed...Mikhala was fabulous and willing to help with ANYTHING, basic groceries (eggs milk cheese, bread, cereal, lunch meat,etc) and a lovely fruit basket were provided when we arrived...
The property itself is very well maintained, and the Aquarium food and staff were fantastic- special thanks to Nanette for her wonderful attitude! They were even so kind as to bring up a pitcher of Mai Tais to the room one day as a special favor when we wanted to stay in the hot tub! Towels are plentiful... we didn't spend much time on the beach adjacent to the property, but it looked beautiful...
The pool is a great back up if the weather fails, or if you prefer a pool...but we spent most of the day on Grand Anse renting chairs and umbrellas from Gregory-who had them set up and waiting for us by 7:30 AM.. also had great dives with Native Sons diving- great trips-great equipment-very friendly- loved Adrien and Rahel (thanks for the showers Rahel!!)...ask if you have any questions about them also!
Please email if you want more pictures...have interior, property and grand anse...

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yardley, PA
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2010

Maca Bana, a small villa resort located near the airport on Grenada, is a special gem that few Americans know about. Beautifully situated on a hillside overlooking Magazine Beach (and with a view of the St. George's harbor in the distance), each villa has its own kitchen, patio and hot tub and spectacular view. The beach is quiet and shaded by palm trees. The restaurant, The Aquarium, is on the beach and its wait staff is friendly and attentive. The food is locally grown (for the most part) and all of our meals were delicious and nicely presented.
The owners are hands-on managers and the general manager, Michaela, is a real treasure. Michaela is a great source for restuarant recommendations, side trips and places to see and things to do on Grenada. She also arranges all the dinner reservations and taxi rides if you don't rent a car.
One word of caution, however- because the resort is situated on a hillside, the walk from the beach (and The Acquaruim Restaurant) to the villas is very steep. We were there for our 40th wedding anniversary and we had no trouble making the climb each day but those with bad knees or hips should be aware. If you have a car (which we didn't), then you can park close to the beach and the walk won't come into play.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2010

Having traveled throghout our world, our experience here was one of the best. The accomodations were fabulous. The staff were helpful, friendly and did their work in a very professional manner. The beach was magnificent. The restaurant and bar served superb food and drinks and the service was excellent. The villas contained every conceievable item expected at a luxury resort - and then some. And rarely do travelers encounter the perfect manager, however Michaela truely is. Words are not able to describe her worth to the owners of Maca Bana. She is perfect. Sincerely, Jim & Maria...

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Maca Bana

Address: Magazine Beach | P.O. Box 496, Point Salines, St. George's, Grenada
Location: Caribbean > Grenada > Saint George Parish > St. George's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in St. George's
#6 On the Beach Hotel in St. George's
#6 Luxury Hotel in St. George's
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Maca Bana 4*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Maca Bana is an intimate boutique hotel comprising 7 artistically designed, solar-powered ‘banas’ with gorgeous ocean views and private massaging hot tubs above our tropical Aquarium Restaurant on Magazine Beach. Laid-back luxury and unrivaled privacy for a sensual & inspiring holiday experience in a warm atmosphere. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Maca Bana Hotel St. George`s
Maca Bana St Georges
Maca Bana Grenada/Saint George Parish

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