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“Mandarin Oriental this is not!”

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Elbow Beach, Bermuda
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Paget Parish
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 9, 2009

This is billed as the best hotel in Bermuda on websites and in brochures.
It was a very disappointing experience particularly as the website heavily references the Mandarin Oriental, yet strangely enough there is no evidence of this when you are at the hotel.
I booked a junior suite having done my research thoroughly, when we arrived we were shown an extremely tired, drab and very outdated very large room with a disgrace of a bathroom - no stretch of the imagination would call this a suite. I phoned reception stating I had not booked this room and it was nothing like the one I had viewed when I booked - I was given a complete fob off. Some of the hotel rooms had been renovated but this category had not. Considering we had booked 16 nights I was less than impressed, the hotel was not fully booked by any means and I feel my displeasure was not dealt with in any sense of pleasing the guest.
Staff at front of house did their job but it did rather seem like they were not entirely hospitable in their approach to quests.
However, the staff in the bars and restaurants were a delight, personable, friendly and wanted to ensure you had a good experience. Also housekeeping were great
The location of the hotel is superb and the view from our room (and all rooms) was breathaking. The main hotel restaurant is desprately in need of a huge makeover as is the restaurant overlooking the beach. The beach restaurant was very good both lunch and dinner were consistently good.
I have included some photos of the bathroom which quite frankly should have been condemned if it is trading as a 5*.
I would stay here again as the location is spectacular but at the moment it is extremely expensive considering its many shortcomings.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Awaywegoagain22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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644 - 650 of 939 reviews

Reviewed November 17, 2009

We just returned from a weekend at Elbow Beach. I originally booked a room in the main hotel, but when we arrived we were immediately upgraded to a "recently renovated" cottage. The unfortuante thing was the newer room/cottage had a bad odor, such as mildew or mold. When I complained I was told that they would see what they could do to change the room. I was offered spraying etc. and the next day I saw another room, but it also had an odor. I wouldn't sleep in a room that needed to be sprayed. I later found out that no one was staying in the main hotel since it is closed to guests due to mildew etc. The entire hotel had an odor including the restaurant. I should have been told this prior to my arrival since the main bldg. looked like it was about to be torn down. The gift shops were closed for business.
After one night of a/c, and fan the odor dissipated and we stayed. The breakfast was plentiful, but not great. The tennis facility is wonderful. It's very professional and run by an excellent pro. The beach is beautiful and that is the main attraction. Many of the hotels on Bermuda don't have such a beautiful long beach. If you go to Elbow beach I would ask for a "newly renovated cottage" in advance and don't expect to use the main bldg. There are great restaurants nearby and taxis are always out front. Weather for Nov. was great.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank 10964j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2009

We spent one week at this resort, and overall we would recommend it. We stayed in the main hotel, which is being closed in about a month. I guess they plan to renovate it at some point in the future. There are villas closer to the beach, we had friends that stayed in those. They were very nice and highly recommended. The pool is heated and was nice. The food was great, but very expensive. Expect to spend about double for what you would in the states (that is for everywhere on the island). The beach is beautiful and the sand is like brown sugar - very soft. I recommend renting a scooter (we used Wheels rental) - they will deliver and pick up at the hotel. This seemed to be the best way to get around the island, and gives you a lot of freedom to come and go as pleased. It only costs around $200 for 5 days. Not bad. The ocean is very cold in November, so dont expect to do much swimming unless you want to freeze, but the pool is heated. Cool nights this time of year as well, basically jeans and a jacket to stay warm in the evening. The days are very nice as long as their is sun, if there are clouds it cools off quick. Overall a good experience, and I would recommend this place to anyone.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank stoutbk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2009

I travelled to Bermuda with our two sons without my husband who was manning our Business back home. My trip to Bermuda started with a nightmare resort (and I do mean nightmare!) and I escaped to Elbow Beach as soon as was logistically possible. Immediately upon arrival, I was hit by the warmth and sincerity of the staff and the sheer quality that Elbow Beach offers.

I had asked for a room that catered for myself and 2 sons, and upon arrival was immediately upgraded to a simply amazing villa with a wonderful view of the sea. It had a patio area and was set amidst gorgeous gardens - I am not sure why I was upgraded but it was so welcome after our dreadful start to the holiday.

Everything about Elbow Beach is precisely what I love; a beautiful beach, helpful, courteous and friendly staff; and immaculate in my view. I cannot comment on the rooms in the main hotel, but I hope that with the impending renovation work at Elbow Beach, visitors will keep faith with this jewel on Bermuda. I am returning without any shadow of a doubt - and would recommend this resort without hesitation.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled with family
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Thank Pegasus8London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 29, 2009

Prior to our stay, I was very torn between Elbow Beach (2 bedroom renovated luxury cottage) and Tucker’s Point (a large suite), as I couldn’t decide between them and read a variety of totally confusing and contradictory reviews on Trip Advisor
(readers of this review can check my profile to get some idea of the type of hotels I am used to).

In the end, I plumped for Elbow Beach because of its superior beach location and the fact that the accommodation would be more spacious and, having visited Tucker's Point for a drink, was very pleased with my decision.

First off, the day before we arrived, the Mandarin Oriental at Elbow Beach announced that on Nov 30th the main hotel building would largely close (other than reception, the spa and pool) including the well-known Seahorse Grill restaurant. So from then on, the hotel will be positioned as a luxury bungalow/ cottage resort, with restaurants, pool and spa. Some renovations will be done to the public areas in the main building at this point, but the bedrooms in the main building are closing at the end of November indefinitely, as these all need major upgrading and – presumably - the current market doesn’t justify this.

We were booked into one of the best cottages in the grounds anyway but I was concerned about what the atmosphere at the resort would be like and how the staff would react to this news and the associated job losses.

Our Cottage, Caprice, is 2100 sq feet, has 2 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms, plus large sitting room, with dining table for 6, kitchen, private garden at front and back with tables in both and ocean views. Rather than being swanky, the style is very comfortable colonial – it has a ceiling height of around 12 feet and grand doorways throughout the cottage. It is NOT glossy, new-money style, but has real and enduring quality about it and we LOVED it! It is totally in keeping with the Elbow Beach Resort which is just over 100 years old and is located on one of the best beaches in Bermuda. You can see pictures of Caprice Cottage on the Elbow Beach website.

The position of the cottages and bungalows in the grounds is simply delightful and I never tired of looking at the gorgeous beach as I wandered through the lush hotel grounds. With the exception of fairly indifferent Reception staff (they were OK, but nothing special), all the staff I met were helpful, kind, interested, courteous and personable. Had I not been aware of the future closure, I would not have known this was about to happen from the admirable conduct of the staff.

Even with the impending closure of the Seahorse Grill, there is a small poolside restaurant plus three beach restaurants: Mickey’s (literally ON the sand), Sea Breeze (on a terrace just above the beach – offering both covered and outside tables) and Lido Restaurant (more formal, evening restaurant). We enjoyed eating at the restaurants and I thought the food at Elbow Beach was consistently good: not great but certainly on a par with many Ritzes and Four Seasons.
There are loads of other dining options in Bermuda, so you never feel tied to eating in anyway.

The sea - even in late October - was 76F and we snorkelled straight off Paget Beach. The beach is private and simply gorgeous, with lots of loungers and beach staff are around to provide towels, drinks etc.

I would also like to say that we were overwhelmed by how beautiful Bermuda is as well, little windy roads lined with lush vegetation, dotted with very well-kept homes.

All in all, I can only think that many of the prior and very negative postings are from individuals who stayed in unrenovated accommodation in the main hotel or had a different agenda. Also, it is worth noting that Bermuda IS expensive so maybe people might have unrealsitic expectations of what a few hundred dollars a night will buy you in accommodation in Bermuda in comparison with Florida, for example. We took cabs all over the place and I spent about $650 in 5 days just on taxis! Meals out are also about double what you would pay in USA, but not that different from what I am used to spending in the UK.

All in all, I would highly recommend Elbow Beach to anyone who enjoys lush tropical settings in a perfect beach location.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled with family
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Thank TM99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 22, 2009

Unbelievably one of the dive instructors appeared to be drunk at our lesson; eastern european guy, Andre or something like that. When we complained to te management, they laughed it off. I even complained to the hotel management, but no joy. Will never return.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled with family
    • Service
1  Thank WaterBuddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 21, 2009

Managers at Elbow Beach today announced the closure of its main hotel on November 30 - which could stay empty for several years. .. The 98 suites and cottages will remain open while renovations to the main building are underway. It is expected a scaled-down version of the main building will open in March.

Please visit Royal Gazette website for full story. I thought this should be posted.

Stayed: October 2009
5  Thank NJgolfer09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Elbow Beach, Bermuda

Address: 60 South Shore Rd, PG 04, Bermuda
Location: Caribbean > Bermuda > Paget Parish
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Paget Parish
Price Range: $385 - $1,063 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Elbow Beach, Bermuda 4*
Number of rooms: 98
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Elbow Beach is Bermuda's only luxury beachfront resort. Lanai-style patios are featured with each of our 98 guestrooms and suites, spread amongst 50 acres of tropical gardens sloping down to the longest private pink sand beach on the island. Each of our elegantly appointed rooms and suites have been enhanced with modern in-room entertainment systems, luxurious soft furnishings, iPod docking stations, personal espresso machines and upgraded bathroom facilities. Facilities include a holistic spa, swimming pool, fitness room, recreation lounge, tennis courts and more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Elbow Beach, Bermuda Hotel Paget
Mandarin Oriental Paget
Elbow Beach, Bermuda Paget Parish
Elbow Beach Hotel Bermuda

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