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All reviewsstandard roomindian restaurantjolly beach resorta la carte restaurantsjerk chickenseafoodann marieentertainment staffsupersaver roomswim up barsuper saver roomcoconut grillstar resortquiet poolthe main buffet restaurantthree stargo with an open mind
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Reviewed November 23, 2009

I had read some bad reviews before we left and was nervous on arrival at Jolly Beach. I was disappointed in the standard room initially, it really is 3 star basic - nothing more so be prepared. However, once we got settled and saw the beautiful beach we were in heaven. The beach is literally stunning and the water beautiful aquamarine. The facilities are good at Jolly Beach, lunch and breakfast is good in the buffet. By far the best restaurant is Lydia's, it is right on the beach and serves really good seafood. The Italian is good too and the Indian. If you fancy choosing your own wine there is a wine list so don't forget to ask as they may presume you'll have the house (which is good). I would definitely reccomend taking a taxi out to another restaurant as you can get cabin fever from just staying in the resort. There are good restaurants close by and the girls at Guest Services are good at booking them for you. Definitely do Shirley Heights on Sunday evening- the steel band and local band are great. The food is pricey but its a nice evening out. The entertainment staff were great at Jolly Beach - there is always something happening. Our trip was great - all we wanted only too short! Oh and the Spa has great deals - well worth a visit

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank jaggerDublin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 19, 2009

We stayed at Jolly Beach for five nights from 6th - 11th November, we were lucky enough to be upgraded to the junior suite, which was not too bad, we were in room 3058 on a corner with some hugh balcony areas overlooking the main bar. It was a bit noisy at night if you wanted to settle down early for the night.
The beach was beautiful, a long stretch of white sand and lovely blue water, it was a lovely bay. All the main beaches are public so you will get people trying to sell you things, but be polite and they will not keeping bugging you.
Apparently the hotel which has been there for 30 years was built on a swamp that is why most people were getting lots of bites from sand flies etc. We met someone that moved hotels in the end.
Staff were generally very friendly, the odd one was indifferent. There were three a la carte restaurants, but as the hotel was only 25% occupancy there was only one opened each night plus the buffet restaurant, rather disappointing. The food was ok nothing to rave about. A reasonable wine choice in the a la carte, but in the main restaurant and bar it was like vinegar.
Overall it was ok, but would not return unless they refurbished the rooms and improved on the food quality.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank caj50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2009

The accomodation left a lot to be desired. After having moved rooms 3 times, we finally got a room that was adequate, then we were charged for an 'upgrade' so beware!! Lots of work renovations going on at the time which was very annoying. We feel that we should have been told about this before we went. The complex was very large and the swimming pools were good sizes but we feel that cleaning them only once a week was not right. The beach was fantastic, real lapping waters and wonderful gazebo's for weddings. The food was very bland, same thing almost every day, chicken rice and peas. We ate out quite a lot round in Jolly harbour where there were some lovely restaurants.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled with friends
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2  Thank chrissiehlondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 12, 2009

Myself and my wife have not long returned from a weeks holiday at the Jolly Beach Resort.

We booked a standard room and although it is a "standard" I was still disappointed in it. The rooms needs a big lick of paint (they are currently decorating rooms within the complex) while the room is generally small. Flatscreen TV with 8 channels or so listed, bed ok......toilet small but separate shower cubicle.

We had just travelled from Scotland and overall it took us 12 hours the minute we left Glasgow airport via gatwick and finmally arrived at the resort so you are tired and a bit more moany than usual.......however.....upon reflection the next day the rooms were less of a relevance. You go to Antigua for the beaches.....the weather and beautiful sea. Not to sit in a room for 7-14 days channel hopping while ordering room service.......if so why go to Antigua?

The large family pool is large and shallow and is also next to the swim up area to the bar. The bar staff are in the main good but busy serving cocktails all day so probably best to nip up the handful of stairs from the pool....get your drinks....and take the all of 20 seconds to return the swim up area with your drink.....is it really worth moaning about a bartender not being on hand when a simple piece of common sense does the trick?

There's s smaller pool set aside for adults but in reality we found hardly anyone using it as there was plenty of space and piece and quiet at the large pool - that is apart from a group of Canadians who really were a loud pain in the backside. They were there for a wedding and contained all adult age groups but all you could hear from a distance was YACK YACK YACK while they were standing next to each other getting drunk until they fell down or made a nuisance of themselves at the large bar much to the annoyance of the staff and other visitors. People were having a great time chilling out and all it would have taken was a quiet word from the older one's in their party asking them to show a little more respect for all the holidaymakers.....this isn't Jolly Beach Resorts fault and didn't spoil our holiday but it would have been even better if a little more thought was shown.

The beach is well........incredible. Footprints in the stand........and stretches for a good mile or so with loads of space to find your oen perfect spot....not that it was busy anyway. Yep, there's some beach lads trying to make a few quid but offer a polite no thanks with a smile or even engage in some chat with them and they are fine. The majority of watersports are free....apart from the speed boats and jet skis. The jet skis are offered by a couple of beach lads running their own business. We paid $45 ($120EC) for 30 minutes in total for my wife and myself. Loads os space and loads of speed.......brilliant time had and well worth the money.

Or you can look to buy some of the local jewellry etc of the sellers rather than going into St John's as trust me.......what they are offering is the same....and cheaper! :>))

Or why not get involved in a game of football on the beach with the locals like I did? :>))

The main restaurant does as it says on the tin. Stack em high and feed the people. Choice is as you'd expect...cereals.....fruit......toast......full breakfast.....omelettes......coffee etc and is fine. This place also offers lunch and evening dinner with the food offered fine.

Or (I keep doing that) you could do as we did and spend 6 of our 7 nights at the three other restaurants in the hotel. Bocciolos is an Italian (to the right of the complex) and we thought it was good. You must wear dress trousers (for a man!) and the place is large,,,airy......looks good and the food was very good.......served in an a-la carte style. God help someone who moans about this place.

The Indian - the name escapes me - is within a few yards of the reception and again the food was excellent. Once more served a-la carte style and really enjoyable.

Our favourite setting was Lydias which is a seafood restaurant to the far left of the complex and right on the beach. We got a table right on the beach and the ambience of the place while chilling over some nice food and a glass of wine / beer was music to our rat-race stressed shoulders and neck! We loved it. Like two old love-birds (we managed to get a week away as a surprise for my wifes 40th birthday without the kids....bad parents that we are......although to be fair we did ensure suitable family members were lined up to watch them....what do you take us for!.....) where was I? Yes, like two old love-birds we strolled barefoot in the sand, hand in hand, back along the beach to the main
bar to get a couple of lovely cocktails before chilling to some local entertainment and then retiring to our rooms exhausted....it's amazing how doing nothing can take so much out of you!

We pad a trip to Shirley Heights in the evening costing us $30 for the return taxi and entry to the old fort. The view is stunning and the feeeling of karma watching the sun dip over the horizon is good for the soul. Entertianment was a calypso band....good to start with but then a bit tiresome and then an excellent band doing a mix of reggae and well known tunes. Bear was $8EC a bottle....about £2 and was fine. Would recommend it as the try through the villages and towns and educational info from our driver was excellent.

We got the local bus to St John's........80p each way!.......which took us to the bus station. A cruise ship was in so the town was busy and we managed to pay a visit to the small history museum and wonderful church higher up the hill. St John's itself is a typical port town with a mixture of local characters all trying to earn a living by selling a thing or two. One or two new devlopments with banks but other than that there wasn't a lot to St John's and would advise giving it a miss and going to English harbour at the other side of the island instead.

Back to the hotel......while one of two of the staff had their minds elsewhere as you find everywhere on earth....the vast majority were courteous.....had a nice hello every day and a nice smile and we got on well with the people we met.

The vast majority of holidaymakers we came across in the hotel were nice enough and respectful to others - see exception above - and from what we could gather were having a good time.

Oops.....there's also a spa where my wife and myself got a lovely back massage each.........it was bliss!......there's also a kids club....tennis courts........gym.......cricket field.......pool tables.......plenty of tables and chairs all over the facility for your own peace and quiet........and the grounds are very well maintained.

Would we recommend the place? Without doubt. If you get it into your head it's a 3* in the UK.....but has a 5* beach and 5* relaxation for the brain and body.........then the room should not really worry you.

Enjoy your holiday at the pace you want and if you do I'm sure you'll have a great time at Jolly Beach resort.

Best regards,
The Glasgow couple without their weans!

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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12  Thank Sharrawarrabarra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
JollyManager, Manager at Starfish Jolly Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded December 28, 2009

Dear “Glasgow couple without their weans” 

Thanks so much for your in-depth review about your holiday at Jolly Beach and that you also had an opportunity to see the sights of our island. And thank you too for the wonderful recommendation. We are indeed a 3-star resort with a 5-star beach and 5-star relaxation, and for any one who shares your get-up-and-experience-everything attitude and is looking for good value, Jolly Beach is a great vacation choice. We hope that you and your family will spend some time with us in the New Year.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 10, 2009

We will be making our twelth trip to Jolly Beach this January. We have been every year since 1998 except for the year 2000. It was called, "Club Antigua". There is no sound at night but the tree frogs and the ocean waves. If you want to be alone a short walk in either direction on the beach gives you plenty of solitude. If you want skyrise hotels and marble floors this isn't your place. If you want warm friendly service and tropical breezes with incredible sunsets, this is where you want to be. We love this place!

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank FRANKSTERMaine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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