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“Low Key Vacation” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Old Bahama Bay

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Old Bahama Bay
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Bayshore Road, West End, Grand Bahama Island   |  
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Florida Residents Package
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in West End
Certificate of Excellence 2014
A TripAdvisor Member
“Low Key Vacation”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2005

My husband and I stayed eight days in May. We prefer small luxury hotels. We were looking for R&R, beautiful beaches, privacy, good food and drinks. We found it all at OBB. Our room was clean and beautifully decorated - very comfortable. The king bed and linens were absolutely wonderful. Housekeeping service was reliable and punctual - same time every day. Pool was great. We did have two or three days when the wind was nil and the no-see-ums were biting. On those days we had to leave the beach/pool around 4:00. This was disappointing as it is our favorite time of day on the beach. The restaurants provided great food and service. One fine dining restaurant - great food and you pay for it...but worth it to us. The casual dining Grill also had good food at reasonable prices, however, the AC broke and did not get fixed for a few days. We sailed on the hobicat almost every day, did the "private island" lunch thing - loved that. Read three books by the pool, rode bikes, ate great. Best Pina Coladas in the world! This is not the place if you are looking for exciting night life. We were in our rooms by 11 pm at the latest. When leaving the airport for obb, Recommend you have the taxi driver ($80 cab ride) stop at a liquor store and grocery store for beer, etc and snacks for the room - you'll save a bundle that way. OBB is secluded and way off the beaten track. All activities can be arranged at the straw bar. We will definitely go back. We gave it a 9 out of 10 because of the no-see-ums.

  • Stayed May 2004
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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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313 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (68)
Date | Rating
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  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Clark, New Jersey
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2005

My wife and I returned from Old Bahama Bay on Friday, June 17th, and we just wish we had more time to spend there. Upon arrival at the airport, there was a taxi there in five minutes to pick us up. When we arrived at the resort at around noon, our room was not ready, so we ate lunch at the Dockside Grille. The food was good, a little pricey, but not more so than Disney prices, and less expensive than popular hotel chains. When we got to our room, it was beautiful. We were in the building closest to the beach, which was very nice. The room was spacious, and the bathroom was beautiful. The Straw Bar had the nicest staff working there, and the drinks were excellent. The food at the Straw Bar was very good, with salads and sandwiches/burgers. Aqua was an excellent restaurant, and the servers there were very friendly. As for the bugs on the beach, they did not come out when there was even the slightest gust of wind, so they were only bad on two out of our six days there. The snorkeling tour and deserted island trip were the two highlights of our vacation. They were both amazing, and the staff did a fantastic job in planning these excursions. Of course everything was laid back, it's the Bahamas!!! Service did take long, but it's part of the relaxed atmosphere down there. All in all, it was an excellent place to spend our honeymoon.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2005

My girlfriend and I just returned from Old Bahama Bay and can't wait to go back! Everything looks just like the pictures on the web site. When we arrived at the airport there was a driver waiting to take us to the resort. About a 40 minute drive. The driver was very friendly and had no problem stopping for us at Winn Dixie. He also made a stop at the local liqour store in West End so we could get some Kalik beer. When we arrived at the resort at about 11:00am our room wasn't ready so the front desk agent told us to go eat at Dockside Grill and when we were through the room would be ready. She even went out of her way to show us two different rooms that we could choose from. The rooms are the best in the Bahamas. Way better than those large chain hotels. You step right out of your lanai onto the beach! What a great view! The beach was beautiful as well as the pool area and they have a hobbie cat, kayaks and sailboats you can use at no charge. Snorkelling equipment is also available. They even have a private island they'll take you to by boat for lunch or an early dinner. Quite romantic. The snorkelling was as good as anywhere in the carribean. The straw bar was great and they even had some special events going on throughout the week. Try the conch salad at the straw bar. AWESOME! They do have a beautiful marina also that does get alot of boats. But it doesn't bother the resort guests that much as the boaters go out during the day to fish or go onto another destination. Only at dinner time does it get a little crowded in the restaurant. Big deal. About the food, The straw bar has the most friendly staff and it was great to hang out there for food and drinks in the afternoon and watch the world go by. The Dockside grill is very good too. Casual restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The only thing about dinner, there wasn't much of a selection but the food was very good. The only negative thing I have to say about our stay was the Aqua restaurant. It was decorated very nice inside but the food had alot to be desired. We both had surf and turf. Lobster was good but the steak was terrible. I think it was pan fried and had no taste to it. The next night we went back and had the grouper which was better but each entree comes with the same side dishes. Strange? Not worthy of being an "upscale restaurant". Service was excellent though. I think if they changed some things in the kitchen at Aqua and added a few more dinner items to Dockside this resort would be one of the best in the world. I can't say enough great things about the staff and service. All the other reviewers need to realize it's the Bahamas and is a little slower pace there. Isn't that why you go on vacation? Everyone at the resort went out of their way to make our vacation a memorable one. As far as the bugs, anyone who has been anywhere in the southeast knows there are no-seeums in the summer. Just put on some bug spray that the resort provides you and the bugs won't bother you. We even told another guest who didn't believe us and he came back later to say it worked. As for the negative reviewers, they have to realize the Bahamas is alot more of a relaxed atmosphere than the states. You need to chill out on vacation. My whole career has been in the hospitality business and I know that if you treat someone nice they will do the same in return. Anything I needed from the staff they delivered. Yes there is no night life but when you spend all day in the sun and doing watersports you just want to take it easy at night. If you want to get away from it all this is definately the place. Very romantic. It's even alot less crowded during the week. We had the resort all to ourselves. In the end I would highly recommend Old Bahama Bay if you want to forget all your worries for a short time. The staff would be happy to help you.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2005

We don't expect the tropics to be insect-free, but the swarms of biting bugs ruined this place for us. They are out day and night. During our stay, the horse flies attacked everyone in that beautiful pool. No wonder the pool was often empty.

If the bug problem was brought under control, we would probably return.

  • Stayed July 2004
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
swisher, iowa
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2005

We have stayed at OBB 4 times over the past couple of years, obviously we like it very much. We can also agree that it is not for everyone, hence some of the more negative reviews posted lately. OBB offers a beautiful, relatively isolated setting. The grounds are nearly immaculate (quite a feat considering the hurricane damage last year), the beach is beautiful (yes, there is sea grass offshore, but this is the "sea" after all), some of the snorkeling areas at or near the resort are absolutely first rate. On a calm day at low tide taking a kayak (provided) out into the waters in front of the hotel is amazing. The swimming pool (2-level, infinity edge) is beautiful as well. The rooms are great, large, well appointed, most with great views. On our most recent trip I would say the food was not as good as on previous trips (previously "excellent", now "average"). We understand they have a new chef, maybe he/she is still finding his rhythm. Some of the rooms have full/compact kitchens, great for making your own meals. Make sure you stop for groceries at the Winn-Dixie on the way in from the airport (some of the taxi drivers can be inflexible about this, be persistent!) I did notice this time that the kitchens were very short on utensils in contrast to our trip last spring when they were fully equipped, not sure what happened. So what are the downsides? If you want nightlife, a lot of activity, a broad selection of restuarants or bars, tacky souvenir shops, or people on the beach trying to sell you things or braid your hair, you won't find it here. If you want a great out-island (i.e., relatively rural) experience you will find no better destination that is this good yet this accessible.

  • Stayed May 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Houston
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2005

My wife and I just returned fom Old Bahama Bay and we were disappionted with the trip. Old Bahama Bay has the potential to be a nice resort, the rooms are great, the beach is beautiful, and its location makes it easy to get to. You are just steps away from the beach at all times. But we felt as though no one was running the resort. The wait staff was polite, but slow. Housekeeping made you feel as though you were a bother, and the spa exsisted, yet we had the feeling no one wanted to open it up for us. It was run like a summer camp, not a luxury resort (which would make sense, because it is not). I would not recommend this place to anyone who was not traveling by boat. The marina seemed to be the heart of OBB. Many families were docked there in 30- 60 foot boats, and they were allowed to use the resort's restaurants, bars, and beaches. Old Bahama Bay was not sprayed for bugs one time during our six day stay. Not once. The bugs were awful. I am still scratching my legs and arms. We had a relaxing vacation; enjoyed the beaches, relaxation, food and rooms, but I will never return. There are too many nicer places. SLH should take them out of the book.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Princeton, New Jersey
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 6, 2005

We just returned from a 4-day stay at the OBB, cutting a 6-day vacation short. We booked the resort because it is in the Small Luxury Hotel club and we have read good reviews on TripAdvisor. However, we were very disappointed with the place. First time in our travel history..... we decided to go home early.

Upon arrival, the front desk cannot find our reservation... It was booked in the wrong month. The room was not ready and we have to wait for 1.5 hours before we can check in. The reception area is like a sales office for new housing development, rather than a luxury hotel. The ground is not lush, probably due to the hurricane damage from last year. The house keeping service is very poor. We called three times one day (twice another day) to remind the front desk that the room is not made up. There is really no "beach service" regarding water, towel, umbrella etc, like other luxury resorts. The food at both Aqua and Dockside Grill are mediocre. Another couple we met shared the same discontent about house keeping service and the quality of food. The positive thing about OBB is that the beach is beautiful and the staff is very friendly in general. Its marina also offers a unique advantage for people traveling by boats.

In my opinion, Horned Dorset of Puerto Rico and Ikal Del Mar of Mexico offer true luxury experience with comparable or slightly higher prices.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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 Old Bahama Bay

Address: Bayshore Road, West End, Grand Bahama Island
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Bahamas > Grand Bahama Island > West End
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in West End
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Old Bahama Bay 4*
Number of rooms: 73
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Old Bahama Bay Resort & Yacht Harbour is the ultimate getaway for tranquility and relaxation. Combining Bahamian charm and barefoot elegance, the resort features 73 spacious beachfront suites, full-service marina, Stuart Cove Shark Dive Operation, fishing and other excursions. Resort amenities include 2 restaurants and bars, paddleboards, kayaks, snorkel equipment and much more. West End Airport is now open for private planes and charters. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Old Bahama Bay Hotel Grand Bahama Island
Old Bahama Bay Resort

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