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“Awesome holiday but resort itself needs work”

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Grand Royal Antiguan Beach Resort
Ranked #14 of 16 Hotels in St. John's
Reviewed February 21, 2013

Four of us (2 middle-aged couples) visited this resort from January 30 to February 13, 2013. We had a very relaxing vacation in which our room (8th floor, lagoon view) was great, linen and towels were changed daily, no musty smelling room, working air conditioning. The beach was fantastic and the food, while a bit repetitive, was very good and nicely prepared. For example: in two weeks, we had steak that you could cut with a table knife on 5 occasions, barbecue on 4 occasions, etc. The staff was absolutely fantastic. By the time we left, we knew most of them by name and we felt like family. Everyone ( manager, night manager, bar tenders, waiters, waitresses, chefs, maintenance and cleaning staff) was friendly and bent over backwards to make our stay enjoyable. The pool, while hardly used, was always clean.
Yes, there are few people staying at this resort. In the two weeks we were there, the total number of 'guests' ranged from 20 to 40. This made for the awesome feeling of family but it did have its ramifications. Food selection, as mentioned, was a bit limited and a bit repetitive, and was available only during the stated meal times - i.e.: no snack bar, only one restaurant open at a time, fresh fruit only available at breakfast times, etc. There was no scheduled sports activity or evening shows, although 'Papa Les' did have snorkel and non-motorized water equipment available. We did have professional musicians at supper on several occasions. Depending on who you are, you would either love this place (example: two couples with 5 boys aged 1-6 who could play on the beach, build sand castles, run to their heart's content, etc) or hate it (family with two teen-aged girls with nobody else their age to associate with). The resort itself is generally in dire need of repairs. The rooms on the bottom floors are still being renovated. A number of 'villas' need to be demolished. Tennis courts, while there are lots of them, are not in good shape and the only thing we saw using them were some goats. Overall, we LOVED our vacation because we enjoyed the location, the uncrowded atmosphere where you never had to wait in line for anything or fight to get prime location loungers by the pool or beach, and above all, the staff. If you want a relaxing vacation, and you want an uncrowded atmosphere, albeit with limited choices, I highly recommend this resort.

Room Tip: Book a mountain view (cheapest) because they will likely upgrade you to a lagoon view anyway since t...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
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3  Thank richard_janet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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124 - 130 of 396 reviews

Reviewed February 18, 2013

As airline crew I've stayed at hundreds of hotels around the world, but never seen such a hotel in such a bad state like this one. The bath /shower is from the 50s and in depeserate need of renovation, the bathroom on whole. The lobby, restaurants and public areas are uninviting. It looks like a ghost town, there're about 7 guests here and they look very unhappy here. One woman arrived and 30 mins later checked out again. We're leaving after 1 night, THANKGOD.

Room Tip: other hotel
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled on business
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5  Thank lillyattwood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2013

My husband and I stayed at this hotel for 7 days, Yes the hotel is dated but it was clean and comfortable. It was a little strange as there were very few people staying there. The staff couldn't do enough for you with big pleasant smiles. The pool was absolutely gorgeous and just the right temperature. I described the beach as Heaven on Earth. I have never seen anything more spectacular. The beach was super clean and I swam in the warm ocean each and everyday. Lunch was always offered at the beach restaurant overhanging the beach with beautiful views. The lobby and bar were very nice but being upgraded. There was no entertainment offered but a truly relaxing hotel. I would go there again for some down time.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jane924
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 8, 2013

Let me start by saying that the resort is under new management and so there are still stores to open, etc. and rooms to fill. That said, the beach is exquisite, the pool sparkles and has a swim-up bar, lunch is served in an open restaurant hanging over the ocean. The food was fantastic for every meal, made to order omelets, fish, pork, jerk chicken (my personal favourite), homemade soups, fresh salads etc. etc. etc. The staff was second to none for friendly service, helpfulness. Our room was spotless. All four public bathrooms I attended were immaculate. There was no night-time entertainment (due to the low attendance) but there was live music with every dinner. The age of guests varied from families with children to seniors. I will definitely be back!

Room Tip: Ocean view rooms see the ocean, the lagoon, and the pool from the balcony - not to mention the cruis...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Lise K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2013

Like some of the others, we had the ''pleasure'' of having to stay there on the night of 25th when our BA aircraft developed a technical fault. we had stayed here in the early 90's when it was a Ramada resort and it was lovely, well now....

The resort looks shut most of the time, we arrived at 2am in the morning, after a time we were given a room that looked towards a hill and no balcony. The room was stale and damp but at least the bed was clean. When we woke up we went for a walk pre breakfast. The beach, though still lovely from our memories was now a quiet closed up beach bar and a closed beach side restaurant. The pool looked the same except there were a few frogs swimming around!

The hotel appared to only have a handfull of guests (my estimate 30) when about 100 of us were sent there, so breakfast was limited as they were not prepared. The food looked ok but then it went down hill, lunch was awful, a very limited buffett, all greasy, no real salad to speak of, the evening meal just as bad.

The male receptionist on the evening of our departure tried to keep us informed but alot of people were unhappy. We could not sign any drinks to our room ( a strange system) cash only or a credit card for every single drink you ask for!!

This hotel needs investing in if it is to survive which I doubt

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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9  Thank Travel-The-World62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2013

My wife and I, along with five other unfortunate travelers, were taken by bus there by LIAT when there was yet another LIAT airplane failure.

First, one can tell that the place used to be exceptional but has fallen on difficult times. The grounds were unkempt, the lobby was uncared for, there were rooms off the lobby that were blocked off and complete shambles.

The key card system did not work so whenever you wanted to get into your room, you had to go to the lobby and they would call security who would eventually show up to let you into your room. The in-room safe did not work, the room felt like no one had been in there in months and there was NO HOT WATER.

The pool was dirty, there was even a hermit crab swimming in the pool.

The front desk and the restaurant and the bar had no cash so we had to wait for over an hour while the staff pooled there money together to make change!

It's obvious the management ran out of money to take care of the resort a few years ago. I've stayed at some pretty nice places and some dumps but this is the worse than the dumps because it used to be a proud place that has been completely neglected.

Avoid unless you want a horror story to tell when you get home.

Room Tip: Avoid at all costs.
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Pedro B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2013

I stayed here for a weekend on my way through Antigua. It looked great on the website and appeared to have everything I needed - a great beach, waterside bar/restaurant, pool, great rooms and nice grounds.

In reality it was awful and I couldn't wait to leave. It is a big hotel and without many guests (there were 6 when I was there), it feels really eerie. The pool was closed, there were no sunloungers laid out, and the area had a really derelict feel. The beach was absolutely deserted (sounds great in theory, but eerie in practice!) and the waterside restaurant was boarded up. There were only a couple of sunloungers on the beach, which were being policed by an elderly security guard from the hotel. There are two good things about this place: 1) the restaurant staff were lovely and 2) there is free internet access from 2 computers in the reception.

I got the feeling that this hotel is used for delayed flights staying one night only, and conferences during the week when out of season.

I will never stay here again.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled on business
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3  Thank ECL100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Royal Antiguan Beach Resort

Address: Five Islands, Deep Bay, St. John's, St. John's, Antigua
Location: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint John Parish > St. John's
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 16 Hotels in St. John's
Price Range: $150 - $600 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Grand Royal Antiguan Beach Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 250
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Grand Royal Antiguan Beach Hotel St. John`s
Grand Royal Antiguan Beach Resort Antigua/Saint John Parish

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