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“Back for the 2nd time!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Exuma Vacation Cottages

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Exuma Vacation Cottages
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Hartswell, Great Exuma   |  
Hotel amenities
Ottawa, Canada
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Back for the 2nd time!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2014

We went back to Valerie's cottage again this year... this time for 10 days! Last year, 7 days at the cottage was a little short since there is so much to do! We discovered new spots on Moriah Harbor where we could fish and we were again amazed by the wildlife in the harbor. As always, Valerie made us feel like home. She is the best! She beats the service offered at any all inclusive we've been at, that is for sure! If you are looking for something different, this is the place to go. Valerie will show you all the good spots and if you find yourself at Valerie's place, do rent a boat from Minn's in George Town and go explore Elizabeth Harbor!

Room Tip: If you want great service and good price, this is the place to go! Cottages are neat, clean and lots...
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  • Stayed January 2014, 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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36 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room Tips
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Gastonia, North Carolina
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2014

A big part of why we ended up loving Exuma is because of Valerie's hospitality and her wonderful property. You instantly feel at ease around her and it was always a joy to talk to her about her life experiences. And her potcake puppies Bridge-it and Casper will keep you company as well! Valerie's property consists of 3 rental cottages, Val's cottage and a larger house that is rented full time but only used part time. Our cottage was right next to Valerie's but we never felt there was a lack of privacy. We felt so comfortable with Valerie and she just makes you feel like an old friend. Inside the cottage is very neat. The living room has high ceilings so even though the cottages are small, the ceiling gives an open feeling. There's a dining table under the large picture window and a small galley kitchen. We cooked many meals there and the kitchen has just about anything you would need. There is 1 bathroom and 2 bedrooms. We didn't have to run the AC much as we had nice breezes the whole week but when we did, the cottage cooled down very quickly. There's a nice screened porch on the front with nice views of Moriah Harbour Cay. The walk down to the dock is very easy and short. There is no beach but swimming and kayaking through the mangroves is alot of fun. There is actually alot to see around the dock. Not really coral, but grasses, anemones, tiny fish. Mangroves are the fish nurseries so there are lots of baby fish to see. If you need a beach fix, just kayak across to Moriah Harbour Cay and walk towards the ocean side. The beach there is amazing with pure white sand and amazing clear blue water and you will have it to yourselves. We didn't get to see any sharks but did see a small sea turtle. Valerie will tell you the best times and directions to go based on the tides and she will even give you a color printed Google map of the cay. We used a dry bag to take along with us so our towels and things did not get wet. It was also really nice to have a pool. Valerie's pool is very unique. We absolutely loved it! In fact, on our last morning there we could hardly tear ourselves away! The pool was so nice to jump in to after a day of kayaking or beaching. There are many loungers and tables with umbrellas. We had the pool to ourselves the whole time. Another couple came in mid-week but we didn't see them very much. They are repeat customers as are alot of Valerie's renters. And you can count us in that category as soon as we can get back there!

  • Stayed July 2013, 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Haverhill
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2013

My wife and I just returned from staying for 8 nights in one of these cottages. We had an absolutely increadable time, fishing, kayaking and going to the beach on Moriah Cay. Valerie provides exceptional hospitality and excellent service. She has lived on the island for many years and is a very good source for information ranging from fishing to beaches to resteraunts etc. The cottages are simple and clean, the grounds are well kept with gardens throughout with a short 2 minute walk to the dock and kayaks. It is without question, quiet and relaxing. We plan to return.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Neenah, Wisconsin
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2013

We rented one cottage while our friends and 2 boys were in another. I echo all of the positive comments from the other reviewers! Valerie helped us out with so many things, I won't list them all to prevent her from being overloaded!!! The pool is a fabulous way to wind down after a busy day, the 2 person ocean kayaks are wonderful for exploring uninhabited areas/islands, and the cottages had everything we needed (especially a fridge for beer)! Wi-Fi is a big bonus to stay in touch (if you absolutely must). Valerie is a long time resident and knows everyone, so she makes connections to people, places and things to do.

Like others, we rented a car to get around all week, rented a 17 ft boat (Boston Whaler) a couple of days in Georgetown (best idea ever), did the excursion with Bob from Coastline Adventures (2nd best idea), went to Chat 'n Chill twice (although they were a bit rude and unhelpful at the end of the day the 2nd time over), ate at Eddie's Edgewater, Santana's (awesome), the Fish Market where an impromptu band entertained us, and ate at many other (both famous and out of the way) places on Grand Exuma and some of the other Cays.

Keep in mind, this spot is quiet, out of the way, and not directly on a beach. If you're looking for an all inclusive with a beach, this is not your spot. However, this is a fabulous spot from which to venture out every day and come back to for relaxation, food/kitchen, pool and re-charging for the next day. We encountered bored people from Sandals Exuma everywhere we went. Do it this way instead!

All I can say is that we will be back and this was one of the best places we've been. Now thinking about retiring in the Exumas!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 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
    • 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.
Ottawa, Canada
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2013

We have just returned from a week at Exuma Vacation Cottages with Valerie and it was amazing! We had fabulous weather, a wonderful host and lots of discoveries. The cottage is rustic, very clean and has all the basics one would need for an amazing week at the cottage by the ocean. The pool is refreshing after a long day in the sun. No need to fight for a chair there!

Valerie is very friendly, always willing to help, give you tips as to where to go and it was nice to know we could talk to her any time. She takes very good care of her guests.

The kayak was in top shape and it is so nice to be able to get up and go for a cruise on Moriah Harbour and we brought our fishing rods and we fished for bonefish a lot using the kayak. You'll see plenty of marine life; turtles, star fish, lemon sharks, the occasional nurse shark, sting rays and bonefish! Pack a lunch and go find your own private beach...

We rented a boat and cruised Elizabeth Harbour for the day. We fished and had lunch at the Chat 'n Chill. We also spent a day with Bob from Coastline Adventures. It was awesome! We snorkeled in Thunderball cave, saw the swimming pigs and swam with nurse sharks!

We had an amazing time and we will be back at Valerie's next time we visit Exuma.

  • Stayed February 2013, 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, MA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

We rented a two-bedroom cottage for ~$130/night, with air conditioning and its own kitchen. The cottages come with access to kayaks and a pool in back as well as access to the ocean a 3-minute walk down the hill. Valerie, the owner, is a wonderful lady who made us feel welcome and offered to pick up groceries for us before we arrived so that we would have breakfast the first morning. Highly recommended!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013

We very much enjoyed our stay. This self-catering cottage in a quiet location was exactly what we were looking for in a vacation. We really needed some downtime and like to spend time on the water so this fit the bill perfectly. The property is as advertised and reviewed by others so there were no surprises. The owner, Valerie (who also lives on the same property) was very accommodating and provided the kinds of extra touches that make a visit memorable. Seeing that we were arriving on a Sunday when grocery stores are closed, Valerie offered to pick-up up a few items for our arrival which we really appreciated. The cottage is basic but clean and comfortable. The kitchen was equipped with everything that we needed. You'll need a rental car and we used Airport Rental which worked out well. All in all, it was just what we wanted and hope to return some day.

  • Stayed January 2013, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Exuma Vacation Cottages

Address: Hartswell, Great Exuma
Location: Caribbean > Bahamas > Out Islands > Great Exuma
Amenities:
Free Parking Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Great Exuma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Exuma Vacation Cottages are located oceanside in a quiet setting on the island of Exuma in the Bahamas . Each cottage has two bedrooms, lounge, well-equipped kitchen, bathroom and a screened porch at very economic rates. Swim in the heated pool or kayak to explore reefs and deserted sandy beaches on the offshore Islands. For affordable accommodation in a peaceful, relaxing setting with direct access to the ocean. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Exuma Vacation Cottages Hotel Great Exuma
Exuma Vacation Cottages Great Exuma, Bahamas

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