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“Not the vacation experience you would want to have.”

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Carlisle Bay Antigua
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Saint Mary's
Certificate of Excellence
Westfield, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Not the vacation experience you would want to have.”
Reviewed April 20, 2013

Miraculously listed as a "Member of the Leading Hotels of the World", this resort falls well short of the expected criteria for such a designation. While basking in the glow of the Caribbean sun, this resort has great potential to capture innocent and uninformed travelers to its shores but, once admitted to the compound you'll realize the mistake you've made. While the stay itself was more than tolerable, the cost of it was much less palatable. You will soon wish that you took that discount trip to Cancun to relive your youth drinking late into the night so you could be passed out by the pool all day, even if you have kids. The resort just is not what you should be expecting.

Room Tip: Get on the second floor.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Gene S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jjonathanreynolds, General Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, April 26, 2013
Dear Gene S.

We were all incredibly disappointed that Carlisle Bay did not meet your expectations. A very high proportion of our guests are repeat visitors, often a couple of times each year. Naturally we are very sorry you have no plans to return.

Carlisle Bay was given The Leading Hotels of the World accreditation from its inception and remains an active member of the program.

Whilst we take great care to evaluate our rates, you will appreciate that Easter is a peak period within the high season for the Caribbean.

Thank you for your feedback and indeed for your note to our Resort Manager, to which we have now also replied.

Our sincere apologies for failing to delight on this particular occasion.


Kind regards,
Jonathan Reynolds
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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962 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (277)
Date | Rating
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  • French first
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English first
London, UK
Level 6 Contributor
150 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed April 20, 2013

We have stayed in a lot of 5* beach hotels, and the Carlisle Bay has just gone to the top of our list of favourites. The rooms were superb. The Ocean Suites were enourmous, and beautifully decorated in Farrow & Ball type colours, and boutique chic style. if you get a room at the jetty end of the beach, the bathrooms overlook the lagoon and hills behind the hotel. Showers and bath were great. Room had Gaggia bean-to-cup coffee machines, which took a little getting used to but were good for the first cup of the morning. Good TV (and DVD player) with iPad/iPod adapter. Very good balcony with day bed and table/chairs. Good wifi throughout hotel (including on beach).

When we arrived the hotel was about half full, and seemed almost empty. By the time we left UK and US half term had started and it was 100%, but still not crowded.

The beach is excellent. Beautiful sand, no seaweed or rocks, and slopes gently away from the shore (can walk out for a good 50 yds - great for children, although ours were not with us). Plenty of sunbeds, though was a bit more competition for them as the hotel got fuller. Lots of Hobie Cats to use (for free) and could pay for sailing lessons from the watersports team who were friendly and knowledgeable. Twice a week there is a free boat trip to snorkel on Cades reef (about 20 mins by boat, and 30 mins snorkelling). You can also take the free kayaks a few hundred yards round the bay to some reasonable snorkelling. There is a sweet, and rather under-used, beach bar by the jetty at the far end of the beach.

Played tennis every day. Facitlities and staff are excellent - particularly Gloucester. Spa is well kitted out and massages were good. Played golf at Cedar Valley - not the best course in the Caribbean, but very playable, wonderful views and very enjoyable. Chartered a 50ft catamaran one afternoon - the Cool Cat - run by Wayne and Lara, a S African couple - highly recommended.

The food is good, rather than excellent. For breakfast, cereals are help-yourself, but everything else is waitressed served, and some days they wee caught out by too many people arriving at once and service was slow. Choice and quality were very good though. The lunch menu was good, and the pizzeria makes a nice change - and is no doubt popular with families. We had a couple of good dinners too, but also really enjoyed being able to go out to English Harbour (about 20 mins by cab) and dine out at some of the great restaurants there, in a wonderful atmosphere. It sounds silly, but the complimentary afternoon tea was something that really made the hotel something special. Wherever you were in the hotel (room / beach / pool / lobby) betweem 3.30pm and 5 you could ask anyone to bring you a tray with pots of freshly made tea and something to eat (sandwiches/cakes etc).

Overall we found the Carlisle Bay was the perfect place for a realxing break. It is a quiet hotel in term time, and i suspect it takes on a slightly different atmosphere in the holidays, although as we experienced at the end of our stay the families and couples are quite successfully kept apart. We would definitely go back and the children would love it too.

Room Tip: Top floor rooms have the best views. The far end of the beach is the quietest and is not a long wal...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Voyager212
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level 5 Contributor
48 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed April 15, 2013

This is a gorgeous hotel right on Carlisle Bay. The very attractive and well appointed rooms are only a few feet from the beach. A quiet beach, cooling breezes swaying the palms, an attentive and super-friendly staff. It couldn't be better. The only issue is that is rather far from St. Johns and getting around requires 30 to 40 minute cab rides.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank jandsnj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Firenze e New York
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed April 10, 2013

We just came back from a week vacation in Antigua and we are so relaxed! We stayed at the Carlisle Bay and we had a beautiful experience. The resort location is phenomenal, on a beautiful, pristine beach. Rooms are beautiful and very spacious with a lovely balcony for lounging. Service was very good, everybody very nice and helpful, great concierge that would understand your needs and make things happen in no time. When we arrived we were a little bit concerned because of so many children (it was during Spring break), but honestly we have to say that this was not a problem as there is plenty of room for everybody and lot of activities to keep the kids busy. Food was ok for the Caribbean standards, nothing to brag about, but this was not the purpose of our trip, however we really liked East, the Asian restaurant.

Room Tip: We loved our room on the third floor, had a beautiful terrace and we did not mind to climb the stair...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Titta9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2013

Beautiful resort on the beach, perfectly set-up for families where parents want the idyllic experience, but want everything and more for their kids. From an elaborate kid club with very diverse activities, to excellent tennis pros, great and healthy food (both for parents and for kids), amazing service, and a very secure environment. My 7 and 9 year olds didn't know where to start, from sailing to boating, sports, zip lining, sting ray..., my 2 year old was king of kid club, loving the playground and the amazing staff. The baby-sitter who helped us in the evening was a nursery school teacher and the kids adopted her in no time. And my husband and I had the most amazing time. We visited pretty much all the fabulous resorts of the Caribbean and have never gone to any place twice. We have returned to Carlisle Bay 3 times and plan on being there next year.

Room Tip: If you have a family, you need the beach terrace room, on the beach
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank sarahy507
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 6, 2013

We had a wonderful vacation in Carlisle Bay last Spring. The food and service was excellent and I highly recommend booking a dinner on the Jetty. We went in May, during the off season and it was perfect…beautiful weather, lovely beach, and very friendly and attentive staff. We spoke to Gwendyln at the little souvenir hut on the beach daily for suggestions on where to go and what to do. She makes most of the jewelry she sells and will make customized jewelry if asked. The complementary afternoon tea and snacks were a big hit with us! They also offer free Hobie Cats (lessons included), kayaks, and snorkeling excursions. Can’t wait to go back!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Joleen W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2013

This was a beautiful resort. The location couldn't be any better - the bay was beautiful and weather perfect. The service is so friendly and hard-working, and the managing staff are very gracious and make it a point to make you feel welcome here.

Afternoon tea was lovely! Lounging on the beach with tea and mini pastries was definitely a plus each day.

The food was not incredible, and the choices were a tad limited. The decor around the resort is very tasteful and understated, the way a beach resort should look. All in all it was a very luxurious, private vacation and I would love to return.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Audreyshen94
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Carlisle Bay Antigua

Property: Carlisle Bay Antigua
Address: Old Rd, Saint Mary's 00000, Antigua
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint Mary's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 Family Hotel in Saint Mary's
#4 Romantic Hotel in Saint Mary's
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Carlisle Bay Antigua 5*
Number of rooms: 82
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Carlisle Bay on Antigua is one of the leading luxury Caribbean resorts, its accommodation designed to allow for both families and couples to holiday in peace. Both kinds of traveler have a dedicated end of the resort, which allows for everyone the tranquility of the spectacular beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Carlisle Bay Antigua Hotel Saint Mary`s
Carlisle Bay Hotel Antigua
Carlisle Bay Resort Antigua
Carlisle Bay Antigua Antigua And Barbuda

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