My wife just returned from our honeymoon where we stayed at this resort and to say the least, we were INCREDIBLY disappointed with this hotel. After just a couple of days there we were having the "should we go stay somewhere else" conversation. I read a lot of reviews on here and after staying there personally, the only way I can see that people would give this place a good review is if this is a person's first time staying at an all-inclusive resort, if a person has little to no experience traveling, or if they're from some God-forsaken place on this planet like Detroit or the middle of no-where. It was so bad that we ended up getting a day pass to Sandals just to "get out of dodge." STAY AT SANDALS, NOT HERE! IT IS WORTH IT! If that doesn't say enough, then read on....
Oh, and before I get started, I've seen the management respond to some of the people who leave negative reviews on here and I must say your responses are quite smug and defensive by the way you take your approach basically telling people they're wrong about their reviews. Just because you have a mini-fridge, flat screen tv, and a safe it does NOT make your hotel current...it is still VERY OUTDATED.
The place is incredibly outdated and looks nothing like its pictures. As we made our way to our actual room we noticed this building was quite old and in desperate need of a renovation. We walked into the room and it was the same thing; the bathroom was small, the shower was a small square that was hardly big enough to shower in and leaked water all over the floor. It smelled like mildew in our room. One night we weren't able to take a shower for several hours because there was no hot water available. I would say that the place is in desperate need of a paint job but I think it needs much more than that. Maybe to be torn down and redone altogether?
I grew up in the tropics so I think some of the reviews in regards to bugs are a little out of line here as bugs in the tropics is like snow in the north during the winter - it's just a part of life. HOWEVER, every night at around 6pm the resort drives around a truck that fumigates the entire property and you can watch as a lout noisy truck puts up a HUGE cloud of chemicals into the air to kill insects. The resort claims it is FDA approved but I still don't buy that it's good for you....
The hotel has three restaurants that you can make reservations at. One is an Italian, the other is an Asian, and the last one is a Caribbean style restaurant that you can make reservations at. These were probably the best options to actually dine at but it can get a little old eating at these to satisfy your hunger but they're only open for dinner. The Italian one had the worst menu out of all of them. The set up of the Italian one is kind of crappy because it's right next to a grill and loud patio area.
The buffet: absolutely terrible. There was a salad bar - and it was the same freaking salad EVERY single day - lettuce, chick peas, beats, carrots, and well....that's about it. The fruit there was hard and not even ripe. For breakfast I would notice some leftovers from the dinner buffet the night before. Sometimes for breakfast the buffet looked like they ran out of half the food there. For example, the line at the omelet station would be at least twenty people deep because they didn't put any other options out there. And the person working the omelet station needed a lesson on customer service because she was quite moody - all the time! I think her name was Mary. On top of that, the breakfast was only served until about 10am. My wife and I were from California and we were on our honeymoon and some mornings (being on California time) we didn't feel like being up at the butt crack of dawn to get our grub on. I would suggest keeping the breakfast buffet open longer and also stocking items so that you don't run out of them because if you didn't make it to the buffet by 930am they would already be out items and wouldn't restock them.
Lunch buffet: more awfulness. If you wanted a healthy option the salad bar consisted of a bowl of lettuce and a few other items. There would be some other items out there from the night before that looked like they were tweaked a little bit. There would be a panini station but the staff couldn't even tell you what was in them when you asked what kind of cheese was in there or what kind of meat was in there. Sometimes there would be a veggie or seafood salad but I didn't trust eating it because it was room temperature and the seafood salad was chewy. My wife and I were often hungry with the few options they had.
So where did we go next for food? They had a tiny little grill next to one of the pools. We saw a hamburger on the menu and for a second we were like, OMG, a hamburger, FINALLY real food! Nope - we were nothing but disappointed. We spent a good five minutes trying to figure out what kind of meat was actually in the hamburger. It was tough, chewy, and crunchy and it was like they tried to offset the poor taste by loading up the hamburger with a plethora of spices. No bueno! The only way to really satisfy your hunger at the grill was with the plain french fries or chicken wings they had - not really any healthy options. Ick.
For dinner we returned back to the buffet. From being faced with disgusting greasy options all day long I was looking forward to enjoying something healthy - maybe a salad? Nope....that same bowl of lettuce still sitting out there with the same three salad items. Sometimes there would be some decent options like some ribs or chicken but half the time it would be very dried out. A lot of the meals were very repetitive and my wife and I were pretty bummed out because we were craving a good meal!
A few other problems with the buffet:
It's either Monday or Tuesday that's Caribbean night for the buffet. They move the buffet outside near one of the entertainment stages. The problem is that the weather for this is horrible. It's very windy and it blows the table linen off the tables and it's just not a pleasant experience. It's also hard to eat when you sit down with a plate of food and it starts to downpour rain. Now everyone and everything is all wet. It was pretty funny to watch the hotel staff carry wet desert inside though... We saw that one coming a mile away (literally, you can see the rain clouds coming in).
it's very small. For the space they have they don't even utilize it to the full potential and there is a lot of empty counter space that they could be using for food items.
The desert bar sucks. All the desert is dried out and the options were the same every single night. There were also inaccurate menu options. One night there was an ice cream bar listed on the menu for deserts and my wife and I were actually pretty excited about it because we thought that would have been the best food we would have had at that point but when we walked inside it was the same crappy, dried out deserts that they had. I asked someone about there being an ice cream bar and they didn't know anything about it. They went to ask another person about it and that person was dumbfounded. They said the desert bar was what was in front of me but I explained to them what was on the menu and they were like, "really?" So they went to look at it with me because they didn't believe me and that person went to talk to someone. That's when I was told that they didn't have an ice cream machine because it was broken.
Nacho night! Another food option we were disappointed with. The nachos consisted of a small little section with a bowl of chips, nacho cheese, and....and that's about it, ha!
I'd recommend those staying there to eat off site as much as possible. Like at Hotel Chocolat or the Dasheene restaurant up by the Pitons. Now THOSE were good meals!
Ah yes...the pools! So, we stayed on the adult Harmony side and what we found out was that there was nothing adult like about it. The adult side was VERY VERY SMALL. The pool was more like a pond. And there was only one very small bar there. I found the bartender to be very obnoxious there and he seemed to attract other obnoxious people who sat and drank at the bar ALL day long to the point where they were belligerent. One of these people who can't control their alcohol was too lazy to go to the bathroom and they pissed all over the bar stools where they were sitting. I would have almost stepped in it if some kind lady had not warned me about it. It seems as if none of the hotel staff was going to clean it up and I don't think the hotel staff really monitors intoxication very well because there were quite a few people who were beyond the cutoff point. Oh, by the way the pool only stays open until 5pm which is a joke AND there is trash in the form of empty cups and food plates everywhere.
The swim up bar! There is only one swim up bar and it's on the kid's side of the pool. It's very small and it's surrounded by many screaming children. The only thing worse than that is the adult pond with many screaming adults acting like children. The swim up bar features the resorts largest pool and we thought it was quite small for the whole resort considering there is only a pond on the other side. There's also a lazy river and water slide and those were mediocre. They were right next to the swim up bar pool so there was a lot of kids around.
On the resort's website it claims there are a lot of water activities. The problem is that the resort is on the Atlantic side and they don't tell you the water is constantly rough and windy and the ocean is filled with seaweed. Because of that the water is constantly being churned up, the seaweed makes the water dark, and it's very choppy so snorkeling is horrible. Kayaking is ok but unless you're experienced and want to take on the choppy water it's probably not for you. The pictures make the hotel seem misleading too because it's windy and rainy the whole time. There's intermittent sunshine of only about ten minutes or so then it gets a little cold with the cloudy and windy combo. Oh the beach is also very small and there is a huge tractor going up and down the beach through the day raking up seaweed but it's a losing battle.
The adult side:
Needless to say the adult side really sucks. It's full of a lot of drunktards. Intermittently dispersed in the crowd were some normal people and we met some of them from time to time. My heart goes out to them because they had to put up with the same experience that we had to put up with too. Anyway, the adult side only consists of that one bar and pond and that's it.
What entertainment? The entertainment is God awful and I wouldn't even consider what they have entertainment. There is nothing to really do there at night past 9pm. My wife and I were very, very bored. We tried making the best of it but it was tough at time and we felt like our new marriage was already being tested because of this terrible experience! ha. A lot of the entertainment we felt was geared towards six year old children. One night we went to check out the entertainment and we were watching a little kid sing the Canadian National Anthem. God bless his little soul but that was NOT what we call entertainment. Another night we decided to check out "Motown Night." We went to the stage by the grill where it was supposed to be taking place and the stage was pitch black dark. It was supposed to start at 830pm and it was going on 850pm. I went to the front desk to inquire about the nightly entertainment and the staff at the desk was dumbfounded, they were like, they're not there? I pointed to the sign at the front desk that said tonight's nightly entertainment was "Motown Night." They were like, "hmmmm, that's so weird they should be there." After some time they told us that they were going on late - they started forty-five minutes late! It gets better....it really does...they were forty-five minutes late and the entertainment only lasted for twenty minutes and the songs that they performed weren't even Motown songs. In addition to that, the stage was in desperate need of repair. There was only one working light so we couldn't even see all of the performers on the stage.
On some nights they did Karaoke at the upstairs bar. The resort staff did a good job at talking up the bar upstairs and talking up Karaoke. The only problem is that nobody ever went there. It was usually empty and to fill up the blank sign up sheet the staff was doing Karaoke.
The downstairs lobby: like I was saying about the small adult section. The bar in the lobby in the evening was kind of the hub of any activity that was taking place. The problem was that we were surrounded by screaming kids. There was also two billiards tables but 75% of the time the resort staff wasn't even regulating the tables and the kids would be jumping all over the tables and banging the sticks everywhere. So ANNOYING.
It was mediocre. My wife is the massage expert as she gets them more often than I do and she wasn't impressed. We did a couple's massage outside but the set up they have for that isn't that good. They talk highly about it online and at the guest services desk. It's right up near the water but the problem is that you're exposed to the elements and the wind is coming straight at you. We also missed the rain by about ten minutes or so otherwise we would've gotten the full assault of wind and rain. The service was also a little lacking. They were fifteen minutes late.
Sometimes they forgot to bring clean towels to our room and we had to call down there for them.
Not too bad actually. But management needs to educate the staff about wine. Don't ask anyone if they have a cab because it will be twenty minutes before you find your answer.
The bright side:
Michi. I loved this guy. He was one of the concierge and he was able to make our trip enjoyable by helping us plan activities away from the resort. The most fun we had was while we were on our activities and not spending time at the resort. I would recommend everyone go eat at the Dasheene restaurant and Hotel Chocolat.
Now let me tell you about our day trip to Sandals:
I would recommend people stay at Sandals instead of Coconut Bay. My wife and I did a day trip to Sandals to go experience a nice resort and it was amazing. It was modern, the swim up bars were amazing, the activities and entertainment offerings were amazing, and the food was delicious - the grill there was a grill and Coconut Bay should take a few lessons from its competitor to the north. STAY THERE PEOPLE NOT AT COCONUT BAY!!! LEARN FROM OUR MISTAKE!
If you're looking for an all-inclusive, STAY AT SANDALS!
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.