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“Our Bottom Line on the Rex...”

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Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts
Ranked #5 of 15 Hotels in St. John's
new jersey
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“Our Bottom Line on the Rex...”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 7, 2004

We stayed at the Rex from 6/30 - 7/07. Here is our review:

ROOM: We recieved a complimentary up grade to a beach front room that was only steps away from the beach. Although not sumptious, the room was fine for our needs, espcially since we had an incredible view of the ocean. The bathroom was a bit run-down, and the windows were foggy with a mist that detracted from the view. As everyone has said, the rooms need to be refurbished. Our air-conditioning was superd though, and the maids did a nice job. Ours was room number 305. So, the room was steps from the beach, with great air conditioning, nice TV, and a dingy bathroom.

BEACH: The beach is wonderful. Turquiose calm waters, and not at all crowded. If I may make one negative commment, it is that there is nothing there to see for those who enjoy to snorkle. The waters are turbid due to the fine sand, andd thus they are cloudy under the surface.

FOOD: We were not all-inclusive, but we did eat dinner at the Warri pier twice, and once for lunch. The view was lovely and we had no problems with the food, in fact it was delicious!

STAFF: Everyone was kind to us regardless of how we tipped them.

CAR RENTALS: We rented a jeep through Avis at the airport for $270.00 for seven days. This was a great deal, and you can get it through Continental Airlines. Yes, there are many potholes on the streets, but it wasn't that bad. This is an island remember, and of course there isn't money to refurbish the streets.

RESTAURANTS: If you are not all-inclusive please try: Julian's (Fantasttic gourmet food, the filet was incredible!), Le Bistro ( excellent French food, excellent service), The Beach (wonderful lobster, sushi, ribs etc, the Beach is a great spot on the water) Coconut Grove (next to the Beach, fantastic Lobster and fresh fish). Honestly, Julians and Le Bistro were fantastic, please get out and try them!!

BOTTOM LINE: The Rex is not a sumptuious hotel, and we heard others complain about their "standard" accommadations, so beware. We were satisfied with our room, but remember, we had one heck of an upgrade! One thing to note: we shared the SAME beach as those who were at Sandals, and they paid twice as much as we did! Also, VERY IMPORTANT: the Sandals resort has not "palapas" or "umbrellas" for shade. For this reason, their beach was practically empty everyday. Do not think we aren't accustomed to excellent hotels: we are! We have been to the Ritz in Meixco, Sands at Grace Bay in Turks and Caicos, the Westin in Grand Cayman, the (relatively) new Sandals in Grand Bahama island, ut we got a great deal here at the Rex, so we took it. We have no regrets!

OTHER HOTELS: Sandals has a nice beach, well-manicured gardens/waterfalls, but no shade for their beach dwellers. Hawksbill had beaches that were not half as nice as the Rex. Jolly Harbor was nice with a cute casino, but the entire place is HUGE, and people are driven around in golf carts due to the enormous distance between the beach and the rooms/restaurnats.

Please email me if you have questions-

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3 Thank molecularblonde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 3, 2004

If you could take all the negative things you read in all the reviews and lump them into one, you would have an accurate description of this place. We learned that this resort is in bankruptcy and is closing. We understood they will be refurbishing the place for the new owners. However, unless you bring professional people in to staff and run the place, it will not stand a chance. Service slow, most workers could care less about their attitudes which makes it hard for the few good employees. The real estate is superb with its location, nice beach, and seclusion. Entertainment was minimal and poor. Sandals was the only place to go for decent entertainment and that would cost you a night pass of 38 dollars american per person. Electricity kept going out for a brief period. Our friends who stayed in beachfront rooms lost their water for two days. NO TOILETS!!....Rooms were hot despite air conditioning. I would never go back to this resort again. You save and save your money to go on vacation just to throw it on a emotionless, uncaring, and uninviting environment. Oh well!!!!!!! I guess you get what you pay for...........

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Travelers are raving about these St. John's hotels

A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 20, 2004

My wife and I have just returned from a memorable
two week stay at the Rex Halcyon.
It was our first visit to Antigua and I can honestly agree with most of the comments regarding the Rex.
We agree that the whole place requires refurbishment,but having said that we found our rooms on the beach front very clean for the whole
stay.
The staff were excellent,and we found the food on
an all inclusive fine with something to suit most people's tastes.
We passed by Sandal's next door on our first walk
along the beautiful beach and were amazed that
there was no convenient shade provided for their
guests on the beach!
We found out later that this was Sandal's policy,
as the beaches in Antigua are public and Sandal's
would only take responsibility for their guests inside
their hotel limits.
We encountered no problems and thoroughly enjoyed our stay.
Would recommend Eli Fuller's Eco Trip .A mine of information and a great day out with good safe snorkelling.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 13, 2004

Rex Halcyon is a decent hotel (if you can stand feces-smelling foulness of their reclaimed water irrigation system.) Antigua, however, bites the big one. Antigua is a third-world culture of shiftless vendorspeddaling t-shirts and beads made in Taiwan. The beaches are public, that much is true, however the land bordering much of the beaches is private, preventing tourists from shore access unless from approach by sea. Even so, there is no public parking allowing for easy access to most of Antigua's 365 beaches, and roads are so poorly maintained that one may not want to risk venturing to such destinations (either at the risk of the crazy, pedal-to-the-metal cab drivers, or at risk of damaging the rental car from the pot-hole stricken roads.) Roads are not clearly marked, the locals drive like bats out of hell, and if you're used to wide lanes you are in for a rude awakening. And while we're on the subject of beaches, think about this. Any state bordering an ocean can divide its beaches into 365 separate beaches just by giving them all different names. This doesn't change the fact that there is really only one beach. This is what has happened to Antigua. There are not 365 beaches, but the nation needed a claim to fame to attract tourists. Don't fall for it. Also, there is no relaxing on Antiguan beaches. Since all beaches on the island are public, vendors are free to roam and pedal their goods to whomsoever they choose. Hotels can't stop them, no one can. And pedal they do. The vendors patrol the beaches like flies on dog crap, approaching everyone they can to try and sell whatever they can. It doesn't matter if you are sleeping, or reading or having a conversation. The vendors will interrupt you to show you their goods as if you had never seen an iron-on t-shirt before.
St Johns is a mess. The vendors attack customers, suffocating them before they are even able to enter the store. The whole culture is so obsessed with tourist money that most every vendor carries the same exact product, and will hound every tourist until someone buys something or walks away disgusted.
There is no craziness in Antigua. Most of the stores and shops close by 4:30 in the evening. The roads are not lit for night time travel, and there are wild dogs and hungry goats prowling the country side.
Save your money, go someplace else.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 10, 2004

Wow! where do I start? We arrived at midnight and it took reception 30 minutes to check us in. Not a high flying start. The next day we got up a bit late and headed for lunch. Food was bland and boring. We finally head towards the beach at 12:30pm only to search for a beach towel for 15 minutes. We came to find the beach towel hut to be only open from 9-11am and 3-5pm. The reception people told us that 'towels are not available between those times' all the while I was staring at a pile of towle fresh from being washed stacked in the office behind her. I asked for two of those and she gave the same reply that 'towels are not available between those times' I guess they needed a nap.
A few suggestions for future Antigua vacationers:
If you stay at the Rex DO NOT go all-inclusive. You can get good food down the beach or at Sandals, yes Sandals!! We met a couple staying there at the Shirley Heights party and they clued us in! Just come over off the beach and enjoy what a resort should feel like! They dont check for AI bracelets or anything. Offer a room number and they seat you! You do need to make reservations for dinner (not casual dining) so we just ate down the beach at the various places.
The Warri Pier looks great in pictures, but looks in real life that it is about to fall into the ocean...poor food as well!
Go to Shirley Heights on Sun night if you want to party. Lots of tourists, but GREAT food, music, and view.
If you want a variety of pools to visit, again head to Sandals. 4 pools and 1 has a swim up bar with very happy and eager staff!
Lennox at the tour desk was ariot! Great guy and he has a lot of fun trips fairly priced. We saw him at The Beach restaurant on our 5th anniversary and he got on the PA and announced to all the patrons it was our anniversary and sent us a round of drinks. again..great guy!
I would visit Antigua again as the beach and island folk are wonderful. I would only stay at the Rex if I was forced to, although for the price it is ok since Sandals is right next door and 5 stars higher than the Rex.
To sum it up, the Rex foods stinks, service is shallow (except for Lennox and Horatio Scotland the taxi guru) the beach is beautiful, and the tour privces are affordable. Stay at the Rex for cheap lodging, but dont expect a 'resort' atmosphere. Think Motel 6 (no offense to Motel 6 by the way) with a beauty of a beach!


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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 6, 2004

The Rex is basically a 2-3* Travel lodge by the beach. The beach is amazing, and I can see why Expedia rank it no.4 in the world. The people at Sandals next door clearly forked out £1000's to stay compared to our £100's.

The hotel is seriously not worth going all inclusive. The lunch and dinner is rubbish. The Warri Pier is also rubbish.

Breakfast is brilliant though, as it is cheap, convenient and all you need to fill yourself up and last the day. I foung the rooms to be clean, safe and basic. They aren't luxurious or fancy, but that was never our expectation anyway.

The best thing is to go for a week or 10 day's room only or breakfast plan. Eat at the restaurants on the beach, The Cocuonut Grove is fantastic, and the Beach Club Bar and Restaurant equally fantastic for food.

After all of these points we still had a very enjoyable trip, and the best 2 things about the trip - The Wadadli Cat's trip to Bird Island, and the Sunday night party at Shirley Heights!

Helpful?
1 Thank N0rthernM0nkey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, UK
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2004

Just got back from our 2 weeks at the Rex Halcyon and thought it would be nice to let other couples getting married to know what to expect.

As many others have commented the hotel itself could do with a refurb but having read previous threads we expected to upgrade when we arrived. The hotel itself has a policy of upgrading wedding couples on arrival ... we chose to upgrade on top of that and ended up with a beachfront suite. No complaints on our room at all. Our wedding party numbered 20 people and only 2 couples felt the need to upgrade from their basic rooms. The hotel manager upgraded the two rooms with no problem at all - and at no cost.

The staff throughout our stay were polite and helpful to the extreme - many thanks to Caitlyn (Wedding Co-ordinator) Elsworth (Reception) and Lennox (Tours) who put themselves out beyond the call of duty. As a wedding couple we found that the staff really did treat us like royalty .. some of which even attended our wedding.

We found meals at the Rex to be a bit the same each day and chose to eat out most of the time.
Most of our party chose to eat AI meals and the majority enjoyed the experience.
If you prefer dining out there are some excellent restaurants on the island and our only disappointment was that we didnt have to time to experience more of them. A few worth mentioning, within walking distance, include The Beach - Paris Pizza and Coconut Grove.

When on holiday we usually prefer to explore rather than be confined to the resort. We got a good price Jeep via Dollar Car Rental (based at Sandals) and managed to explore everything that Antigua has to offer. We did hear other Brits moaning about lack of entertainment and facilities ... It probably goes without saying that if you chose to be confined to any resort for 2 weeks
it would probably get a bit boring ... definately recommend the jeep option as Antigua, whilst not a huge island, does have some beautiful sights to see.

As many others have mentioned the beach at RHC is beautiful and a perfect place to relax. On our travels we also came across Darkwood Beach (near Jolly Harbour) which was often deserted and the water was much clearer than at the Rex - many thanks to the bar man at Darkwood Beach Bar for digging our jeep out of the sand.

For any of you planning to get married at the Rex, dont hesitate. We added a few things on to the basic package - steel band - photos - video and have come away with some great memories. We rarely visit the same place twice but will visit again in years to come for one of our anniveraries.

We wont go into the many trips available as they have been posted here many times before .. and as mentioned are all excellent.

Our only advice is dont be confined to the resort ... explore Antigua and hopefully you'll be as happy with the experience as we have been.

If you would like any more info please email us.


  • Stayed May 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank CADspark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts

Property: Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts
Address: Dickenson Bay | PO Box 251, St. John's, Antigua
Location: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint John Parish > St. John's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in St. John's
#5 On the Beach Hotel in St. John's
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts 3*
Number of rooms: 181
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoying a pristine picture postcard beach front location, the Halcyon Cove by rex resorts offers the very essence of a perfect Caribbean setting. Beautiful glistening waters gently lap at the palm-fringed white sands of Dickenson Bay where guests can recline beneath the palm-frond parasols or exert some energy on a variety of water sports. International buffet breakfast and dinner cuisine is served at the Arawak Terrace restaurant or treat yourself at the Warri Pier a-la-carte restaurant featuring speciality grills and lobster in its unique setting over the sea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Halcyon Cove By Rex Hotel St. John`s
Halcyon Cove Antigua
Halcyon Cove By Rex Resorts Antigua/Saint John Parish
Rex Halcyon Cove Resort
Rex Halcyon Antigua

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