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“Sandals 1-20-13” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island

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Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   West Bay Street, Cable Beach, Nassau 13005, New Providence Island   |  
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Ranked #2 of 33 Hotels in Nassau
Minnesota
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Sandals 1-20-13”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2013

We have been to many different all inclusive resorts. Thought we would try out a Sandals to see if it was "so much better" as many people have said. We do not think it is worth the extra $$ just to stay at a Sandals. We do usually stay at the highest grade rooms on any property we pick, so we are not comparing a budget room with a Sandals room. We will not be spending the extra $$ to say we were at a Sandals, it's just not worth it!

Room Tip: The Balmoral Tower has been remodeled, all rooms are nice.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Calgary, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

This was our third Sandals and for me I think it was my favourite due to the proximity to the airport, Nassau and Atlantis for a day trip. My husband prefers the beach and restaurants at Sandals Whitehouse and there is something very romantic and special about Sandals Emerald Bay that you won't get in Sandals Royal Bahamian.

Around the Resort:
However, I found that at SRB you had so many options. During the day you can take the ferry and go off to the offshore Island which is amazing! You can also venture out and go check out Atlantis or go into Nassau, which I recommend doing so during the day time as everything closes at 5pm. We went in the evening and had a meal at Señor Frogs and had a great time. For those who miss their daily Starbucks coffee run there is one down the street and a Burger King/Domino's/Subway across the street from resort entrance. Get the number 10 bus from the resort entrance for $1.25 each way but the last bus is around 6:30. The standard taxi fare is $15 but they will try to get $18 to $20 out of you.

Offshore Island:
As mentioned the offshore island is amazing. If you want to be alone or go somewhere less crowded the off shore island is the way to go. My husband brought his own snorkeling gear and went snorkeling almost every day, he saw schools of fish and also turtles just feet from the beach on the far side of the island. When you take the ferry do not forget to bring towels as there are none on the island. One of the many things I appreciated about this resort is that both the Sandals photographers and Red Lane staff were not constantly in your face hustling you as much as they did in the other two Sandals we have stayed at. The other half of the island (not owned by Sandals) is currently being developed into a dolphin encounter which would be fun (at an additional cost) in the future.

Room:
Our room in the Oleander building in the Royal Village was dated but spacious. We saw a few rooms in the Balmoral Tower which were beautiful and new but smaller than ours. We were quite happy staying in the Royal Village which seemed to be more lush and had it's own little private pool outside our building.

Restaurants:
Now for the food part… By any means I am not Anthony Bourdain, both my husband and I are very picky (not in a gourmet way) but found that there was something delicious to eat in all of the restaurants. I will agree with some reviewers that service can be slow but you are on holidays and some staff members are on island time. Sit back, have another cocktail and enjoy!

Grounds:
I felt that the grounds were maintained to a high standard and the gardens in the Royal Village were very lush. The resort didn't feel overcrowded even though the resort was over 90% capacity. The room was kept clean daily and the turn down service in the evening was very efficient and prompt. We never saw any staff cleaning our room yet it was done every day like clockwork.

Staff:
I would like to take the time to acknowledge a few people that made our stay more pleasant. Thank you to Andy from maintenance, our shower broke and he came within minutes to fix it. Kerry from the Cricketer's Pub it was nice to see you again. I believe his name was Heston (he was not wearing his name tag), the piano man. We had a great time signing along and had lots of fun, however Heston is only there on Sundays but if you are staying at Emerald Bay resort I believe he is there full time. Also, the "Tiny Chef" at Kimono's restaurant (also not wearing his name tag), you are quite the entertainer. Netecia at the Windsor swim up bar was awesome! She introduced us to Caipirinha's (pronounced Kai-Pee-Reen-Ya), and even came back to make my husband another drink as she was heading for her break. It was also nice seeing The GM Patrick Drake again, we first met him at the Whitehouse resort and the second time at Emerald Bay. Our next Sandals vacation will hopefully be to St. Lucia so we hope to see you there Mr. Drake…

Opportunities for improvement:
We were only disappointed by a couple of things during our stay.
1. The beach in the resort is short and the swimming is limited as it is roped off for the ferry to the island. If it wasn't for the offshore island I would have been very disappointed so when the weather is bad and they close the island (as high winds makes it too dangerous to get on and off the ferry) this is a problem.
2. Our flight home was delayed for several hours due to technical problems (there was at least twelve other Sandals guests on the same flight). I understand that the resort has no control over flight changes but they could have informed us of the delay (there is a flight departure/arrival screen at the Balmoral Tower concierge desk), which would have given us time to make plans to go some where for four hours before heading to the airport.


Overall we had a great time. I would recommend this resort to any one who wanted to go to Nassau. I thought the resort was much nicer then the over edited photographs you see on the web site.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ventura, ca
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013 via mobile

My husband & I stayed here in January 2013. We had a great experience. All the restaurants were fabulous. The bar service however was not. They were not friendly at all. We never made it out to the private island. So no opinion on that. I heard from other guests that it was great, and others that it wasnt worth it. I would have liked to heck it out.The spa was amazing! And the best was our on site scuba dive coach Brian. We got certified with him. He was great! The whole dive team was friendly & made our experience magical. I would go back, the rooms were average. We stayed 6 th floor Windsor tower. Bathrooms weren't the cleanest. The bed was nice & had turn down every night. Room was stocked everyday with water, beer & soda. Piano bar is super fun! Go there! Went to town & rented mopeds, a must! You can really see the island better that way. Any questions please feel free to contact me!

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
westk18858
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

We just returned from 5 nights at Sandals and it's hard to be back home!
It was just so relaxing having your biggest decisions be where to lounge around, where to eat and what beverage to get!

I had always wanted to try an all-inclusive and was really glad that we did here. I was concerned we might not find the food and drinks up to par but we were pleasantly surprised. Sure, some of the bar menu tropical drinks were pre-made and too sweet- but you could always ask for 'double rum' (for example) or add a shot of your own from your in-room bar. I love white wine and was very happy with their selection. We were happy to have a few bottles of bubbly during our stay as well!
We enjoyed the option of both in-room breakfast and the buffet- lots of choices here. One suggestion would be to have espresso drinks available- I really missed my morning latte.

The restaurants where reservations were required were really very good. Especially the Japanese and French restaurants. The Crystal room was very good too. The English pub could stand some improvement- we ate once here because it was where we could view the NFL playoff game (which was on way way too loud!) but did not return. The pizza oven by the pool/ocean is a great concept- please work on your pizza sauce, it tasted like ketchup! I really wanted to love the pizza but just couldn't get past that sauce!
The last night of our stay there was a chocolate night time buffet- awesome!!! Such a great idea, and it was so yummy! Keep this up!

The private island is so serene and peaceful- we loved spending time here, it is a must.
I also love to have a good gym when I am traveling, and the view from the fitness center (top floor) was fabulous. There are towels and water here too.
There were lot's of activities to choose from each day- from poolside games to afternoon tea to night time comedy- you could do as much or as little as you wanted to.

We also enjoyed the offer to have our photos taken......we are always taking pics of our kids and never get ours done! We bought a CD of a few favorites and it was well worth it.

We loved our trip so much, we took advantage of the offer to return, and booked next New years in Jamaica at Sandals! And, our fabulous travel agent (Dream Makers Vacation service- Amy McHugh) will still get the booking and handle all the arrangements (phew! they were wonderful and scored us an upgrade!).

I understand if you may be hesitant, but encourage you to go!!! We travel many times a year, both with our kids and solo weekend getaways- we stay in condos and in hotels....... but we really truly had such a great vacation!!

Room Tip: We stayed in a tower and had concierge service (full bar) and a great view of the Ocean/pier.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cedar Falls, Iowa
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2013

We have always stayed at the RIU's but after this trip will visit a Sandals resort again! We found the food to be excellent overal, the pizza is to die for! The private island and water sports were all great options to take advantage of. The staff was extremely helpfull and polite, we were there for my 40th birthday and the staff went out of their way to make it extremely special! We found that the staff will leave you to your privacy if you choose but if you want to interact we found that they are very happy, funny and polite people to chat with. The overall beach view is beautiful and early morning sunrises and evening sunsets are amazing. Our only suggestions for improvement for this resort would be the tempature of the heated pool in the off season (was quite cold during our trip), cleanliness of the grounds (at times we found the pool/hot tubs to be very dirty and liter around), and maid service (we had ants in our room, tolitries were not restocked and no turn down service on our last evening).

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Richmond
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

My girlfriend and I are avid travelers, but never once have we agreed to sign up for an all-inclusive getaway like Sandals Royal Bahamian. Two friends and their respective husbands have vacationed at this property before and recommended it highly.

We were looking for a quick four day trip and we pulled the trigger on Sandals in January of 2013.

There is an airport shuttle service to and from the resort. Warm welcomes, cool facecloths and champagne are handed out when you step foot on the property. I tried tipping one of the baggage attendants, but he politely refused saying, "I'm not allowed to accept tips." Another attendant didn't hesitate to accept the tip in a discreet handshake.

A Sandals representative met us in the lobby and escorted us to our room and gave us a brief tour of the resort. Our bags arrived not long after we got into our room.

We've read some reviews about outdated furniture. We upgraded and stayed in the Balmoral Tower (Room 319) which had recently been renovated. The furniture and decor were modern and clean. Our room had a partial ocean view and balcony. The bathroom is quite sizable with two vanities.

The shower leaked and the pressure wasn't strong. Could have done without the pre-recorded voicemail messages everyday from the resort urging us to sign up for future Sandals vacations. Bothersome, but certainly not deal breakers.

A few bullet points about our most enjoyable stay:

*Make your reservations for the restaurants early in the morning. (Remember not all restaurants are open each day)

*Visiting Sandals Cay (The small island offshore): We planted ourselves in two chairs on the beach to the right of the dock. There was construction to the left. We found the side of the island opposite the dock too windy. It is like a vacation within the vacation. Lunch available and plenty of drinks. It would be more enjoyable if visitors didn't have to leave the island at 3:45pm. Get there early on either the 10am or 11am shuttle to enjoy the island.

*Visiting Nassau: You can walk outside the resort and grab Bus #10 for $1.25 one-way. (Remember to take your Sandals card. We didn't and were kindly reprimanded upon our return) The bus is small and filled with locals. If you are claustrophobic you can always opt for a cab. Downtown Nassau is a bustling, rather dirty place lined with cheap t-shirt shops and overpriced designer stores. We walked up the Queen's staircase and visited Fort Fincastle near the hospital. Not spectacular, but interesting to check out. The "fabled" Straw Market was overwhelming and underwhelming at the same time. You can't stop for a second without someone trying to haggle with you. After a couple of hours of walking around we decided to return to the resort. (We chose not to pay the steep price and visit Atlantis' water park)

*We found most of the employees at Sandals to be quite friendly. Glenda, the hostess at Spices, was bright and cheery every morning. We loved seeing her. Alexander, a server at Baccarat was excellent. Late one night my girlfriend asked where she could find some of their oatmeal raisin cookies that appear in various places around the resort. One employee said there were none left. He asked my girlfriend to wait a few minutes. He returned with a plate of piping hot fresh cookies!

*Some of the daytime bartenders stationed at the theatre building seemed annoyed at having to serve you drinks. Attitude city each time. No smiles or "Hellos". Overall though, we found the employees delightful.

*Grab a drink at night and sit in a couch at any one of the several fire pits near the beach.

*Towels are readily available.

*If the house band The V.I.Ps are playing go see them! This R&B group was smooth and they took requests... Barry White, Marvin Gaye and other classics. We danced their entire set.
Other entertainment included a group of young male and female dancers who grooved to a choreographed set. The comedian was crass... lots of anatomy and bathroom talk.

*The food was delicious in each restaurant. The service, while not the most prompt, was decent. The drinks were quite potent. (I suggest the Miami Vice)

*If you have the energy and want to work off the never ending desserts and drinks visit the gym on the sixth floor of the Balmoral. The equipment was in good shape and many options. The treadmills, stationary bikes, etc.. all faced the ocean.

*The resort was low-key during our stay. We were expecting a crush of people, but we were pleasantly surprised at how few vacationers were there. We heard the resort was 40% full.

*A manager saw my girlfriend and I in the jacuzzi one night. He asked us how are stay was and then offered to get us drinks. He took our order and five minutes later drinks arrived. Now that is service.

*Do not miss the piano bar for a night of fun. Lots of laughs with the crowd singing the obligatory "Piano Man" and "American Pie".

Our vacation was over before we knew it. We're happy we decided on this Sandals resort. This will not be our last all-inclusive vacation.

Happy Travels!

Room Tip: Upgrade to the Balmoral Tower. You'll be glad you did.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stony Plain
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

First of all you get what you paid for! The resort was very nice, the room very nice and always clean. Food was really good at the Crystal room, Casanovas and Kimonos these are the restaurants we frequented often for the 10 days we were there, we tried the others but they were not to our liking. We have been to lots of resorts and I would have to say it was the best food we ever had, We had grouper and mahimahi so I dont know what the other reviews were talking about cause they offered it to us every night! The staff are very friendly and the service was good for a non tipping resort. We had and oceanview in the Windsor Tower on the 5th floor. The only drawback for us was the fact that it was not warm enough, windy and thats not the resorts fault otherwise it was great and definetly will go back just another time of the season.
If your looking for a party resort this is not the one for you.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island

Address: West Bay Street, Cable Beach, Nassau 13005, New Providence Island
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Bahamas > New Providence Island > Nassau
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Nassau
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Nassau
#1 Luxury Hotel in Nassau
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Nassau
#2 Family Hotel in Nassau
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•New, extra comfortable, ultra luxurious Day Beds added poolside on Sandals Cay •Sandals Cay now has Zen Spa and Fire Pits.-----•Butler Service, 24-Hour Room Service, and Rolls Royce or Mercedes Transfers for select suite categories. •Over 10,000 sq. ft. of the Island’s most impressive Freshwater Pools•Sandals Cay – Nassau’s only resort with Private Offshore Island & Restaurant.•Ten Dining Options featuring an array of cuisine from French to Bahamian. •Minutes away from excellent duty free shopping in Downtown Nassau on Bay Street and world class gambling on Paradise Island.•Weekly Late night decadent Chocolate Buffet offering specialty coffee •Voted Sandals Resorts “World’s Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row. •Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row. •Voted Sandals Royal Bahamian “Bahamas’ Leading Spa Resort”. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Hotel Nassau
Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort And Offshore Island
Sandals Bahamas
Sandals Royal Bahamian Cable Beach
Sandals Bahamian
Sandal Resort Bahamas
Sandal Royal Bahamian
Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Bahamas/Nassau

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