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“Beautiful hotel, but avoid if you don't like children”

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Carlisle Bay Antigua
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Saint Mary's
Certificate of Excellence
Marlborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
168 reviews
143 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 170 helpful votes
“Beautiful hotel, but avoid if you don't like children”
Reviewed March 22, 2014

This is a wonderful hotel, about 45mins drive from the airport, set on a perfect crescent of palmfringed white sand looking out towards Monserrat.Everything is well maintained, with gorgeous tropical gardens.
We had an Ocean suite, third floor.It was large, with very comfortable bed, plenty of drawer and wardrobe space, and ensuite with shower cubicle, huge bath and 2 basins. The windows here looked out over the mangroves with lots of water-birds. Down 2 steps from the bed area was a lounge with large sofa and armchairs, TV with DVD player, and from this led patio doors on to a large terrace with day bed,table etc. The rooms furniture was too dark for my taste, but everything else was perfect. It not only had the usual kettle, safe, minibar etc, but useful extras lke citronella candles, insect repellant and mosquito pastille burner and spray- although we were not troubled by insects much, daily fresh fruit and ice. Third floor rooms have the advantage of high vaulted ceilings with no-one walking on your ceiling, but are a 30 step climb, which could be a problem for some people. Also the room is at the level of the palmtree tops, so the view over the bay was a little restricted by the fronds. We loved it anyway.
Dining is at Indigo on the beach for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with the Asian restaurant East for dinner, and Ottimo, Italian based, for lunch and 2 dinners per week. The food was excellent, and cooked to order- no buffet breakfast here. We found the service exemplary. We also liked the lunch boxes you could have served to you on your beach lounger, and the afternoon tea provided complimentarily wherever you wanted to have it.
The hotel provides some free activities. We did the rainforest hike with Silvester- quite strenuous but worth it for the superb views. We also went snorkelling on Cades reef and saw a reef shark- magical. Be warned though- there are very few places so book as soon as you get to the resort to stand any chance of a place. We tried and were told they were booked for the entirety of our stay. However sensing our disappointment they put on an extra trip just for us- a good example of their excellent customer service.
The staff were a credit to the hotel- helpful, smiling and always calling us by our names. I could not fault them.
There is one big BUT about the hotel though,if you are staying as a couple wanting a relaxing break, as we were. There are a LOT of children, and some behaved very badly, spoiling the atmosphere in Indigo and making a pleasant dining experience here difficult. There is an adult only part, but it isn't big enough to accommodate all the couples who want to avoid all the screaming little darlings. East and Ottimo do have some adult only evenings, which was a relief, but breakfast was a bit of a zoo! Also the families completely monopolise the swimming pool- not a problem for us as we liked the beach, but I really feel the resort needs an adult only pool.
This is the reason for a 4* review- with better behaved children (or none preferably!) this hotel would have been perfect. I would love to return, but would make sure our stay did not coincide with UK half term, USA Spring break, or, as this time, Canadian March break.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Levoyageur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (276)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Antigua
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed March 20, 2014

Stayed in August 2013, talk about VIP service, from the moment you enter the property …Elsa was first class and it seems as if she never leaves, she is there first thing and then we see her again in the evening with the same professional awesome attitude as if she just arrived, she is amazing! Wendy, in charge of housekeeping also made us feel so important and went all out to ensure we were comfortable and all our needs were met! Great team, can't wait to return!!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Melinz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed March 20, 2014

Just an A1 experience all around. Highlights included; waking to the sound of the sea lapping aginst the shore, the three steps to the beach from your veranda, the beach itself in its sheltered, private and beautiful setting, watching the sun set over Montserrat from the jetty, swimming across the bay partnered by a turtle, spying lion-fish while snorkelling from the beach, the exceptionally high standard of cusisine, the fantastic tennis facilities and staff......and don't even get me started on the professionalism, positive attitude, and assurance given by the kids club and it's staff (oh yeah, and the kids loved it too...). Think I loved it? You bet I did. The Caribbean gets no better than this!

Room Tip: Make sure you have no more than three steps to the beach....
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Matt P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, UK
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed March 19, 2014

Fabulous, fabulous stay once again with our 4 year old in an Ocean Terrace opening out onto the sea. All the wonderful team including the manager, Elza, Althea, Keriesen, Joachim, Deano and others remembered us from last time, and the whole kids club team remembered our little boy. Elza even brought him a crab in a bucket to see after he had asked about it. Literally nothing is too much trouble here, everyone is so accommodating in the face of a lot of people all asking for different things and modifications on food for children etc. To that end, the food in all restaurants was amazing. The speedboat trip is massively worth the money, we had a fantastic time, and having a picnic on a boat, in a secluded bay under the shadow of a centuries-old Caribbean fort is one of my memories of a lifetime. Carlisle Bay has got it right on so many levels. Love it, love it, love it, and can't wait to return again.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Kindula
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed March 17, 2014 via mobile

Truly genuine service with attention to detail. Check in was prompt and efficient. The grounds are well maintained and lush. Food delicious--Asian cuisine for dinner at East and daily breakfast at Indigo. Afternoon Tea on Suite terrace was memorable and very good. Highly recommend for couples getaway.

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank MiamiGlobeTrotter64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guilford, Connecticut
1 review
Reviewed March 17, 2014

I have stayed at many wonderful resorts over the years and this is the first resort that has inspired me to write a review. We had a wonderful family vacation at Carlisle Bay. The rooms were clean and tasteful and perfect for a family. The grounds are beautiful and the food was delicious!!
We have 2 young children who loved the beach and the pool and we look forward to future trips when they can sail, snorkel and play tennis. We also arranged to have private swimming lessons which were terrific. The staff was gracious, kind and excellent- highly responsive and professional.
We plan to return next year and will likely try to sneak in a long weekend here and there!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Claudia C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, New York, United States
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed March 10, 2014

My boyfriend and I spent four days at Carlisle Bay in mid January and had a wonderful experience. We were extremely pleased with the service from our pre-arranged cab pick-up at the airport to the warm welcome at the resort by the property manager,to daily interactions with staff, who were friendly and available. We chose to stay on the resort property for the entirety of our trip and spent our time dining, relaxing on the beach, light workouts at the gym, and enjoying the complimentary watersports in the bay.

We enjoyed both restaurants - the ambiance at the main dining room in the evening is wonderful and though it's open air, bugs weren't a concern due to the torches. The asian-themed restaurant was also good, though the decor was a bit simple (hard to top a sunset beach view). Definitely check out the Italian restaurant for lunch by the pool - the antipasto, salads and pasta were great. We ordered room service for a quiet evening and found it prompt and pleasant ordering via phone. We also ordered lunch on the beach most days - the bento boxes are delicious and filling!

We stayed in an ocean villa on the ground floor and very much enjoyed the view of the beach, as well as the easy access if we wanted to pop in and shower or nap just a few steps from the beach. We appreciated that the couples are placed on the opposite side of the resort from families and mealtimes are also regulated to avoid overlap. Our area was mostly couples and we found the vibe relaxed and friendly all around. Highly recommend a stay at Carlisle Bay.

Room Tip: All rooms are close to the beach but ground floor ocean villas have the best view.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Alex B
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 Top resorts Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 On the Beach 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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