For a New Yorker, Bermuda is a phenomenal getaway. Take a short hour-and-a-half flight and you reach an island paradise. Set on a cliffside with a clean, good-sized beach, the Reefs' physical property epitomizes that island paradise. But I think The Reefs gets away with overcharging because of the mystique of those gorgeous grounds, and the beauty of Bermuda in general. We are easy to please, and with our wonderful company, and our wonderful vistas, we could have slept in a tent, and probably still would have rated this 3 stars. To be fair, perhaps some of the issues (discussed below) are a result of the ongoing construction of on-site timeshare properties, but that is still not an excuse.
We stayed in the Windy Brae cottage, with two bedrooms, one bathroom, and a private balcony and hot tub overlooking the ocean, and surrounded by lush greenery. The views were absolutely breathtaking, and the rooms relatively clean (I use the word "relative" because of some problems with vermin, although I would like to think that ants and water bugs are par for the course in a tropical environment surrounded by lush greenery). Security guards made rounds in the evenings as we sat outside enjoying our hot tub. The beds and linens were decent, as were the furnishings, although nothing to write home about. As I stated above, our company and the views assisted us in overlooking some major problems.
For $900 a night for a two bedroom cottage -- with no working phone in the cottage (for the entire time of our stay), no hot water on arrival (although that was fixed the same day we complained), no room service (because of the construction, even though about $130 of the $900 nightly fee appears to comprise a resort fee), and a requisite walk to the room (with a 1 year old baby in a carriage) on a dangerous, curvy, main roadway with no sidewalk, (due to the construction of timeshare properties) -- one would think that the service would be impeccable to compensate for these inconveniences. At best, the service was inconsistent.
The construction "discount" at the moment does not seem to compensate sufficiently for the lack of amenities. In addition to the dangerous trek to the main property, our cottage was adjacent to a separate construction site, and, on one morning, at 7 a.m., we heard men loudly complaining about their jobs at the Reefs outside our windows.
We opted for the breakfast plan only and took cabs (although expensive) to various restaurants on other parts of the island for dinners (as an aside, I would recommend Blu, the Lobster Pot and the Seahorse Grill). One gentleman we met had visited the Reefs numerous times in the past, and had previously been satisfied with the meal selections. He commented that he was disappointed, however, with the lack of selection at the one functioning restaurant, Coconuts. Also, on our last evening, we took the five-minute walk down the same busy roadway to the "recommended" Henry VIII -- a glorified Ground Round. The $250+ for dinner for 4 was NOT worth it.
All in all, the service at the Reefs was just decent in my opinion. Yes, the staff are friendly and try to remember that you drink iced coffee, etc. However, that service was inconsistent, as noted above. As an example, on our last day there, here is a sequence of events that transpired:
(1) The evening before, the front desk informed us that our bags would be picked up from the room at 9:45 a.m., and that a cab would be waiting for us at 10 a.m. at the front reception area.
(2) At breakfast, around 9 a.m., a waiter informed us to call the front desk. The front desk informed us that we should leave for the airport 15 minutes earlier -- at 9:45. We assumed our bags would be picked up 15 minutes earlier as well.
(3) Around 9:45, as we were checking out, the bellhop asked us to traverse the dangerous highway one last time to (a) pick up our bags and (b) meet a taxi cab there. Needless to say, we were miffed, as we had rushed through breakfast to leave earlier, only to find that our bags had not yet been picked up. We informed the bellhop and the front desk that we had no desire to make the dangerous voyage back to the cottage with the baby, and then wait on the no-sidewalk-having street for a cab that was already late (on our last "voyage" earlier that morning, we all were thankful that we had made it through our 5 day vacation without being hit by a car). Our party was quite upset at that treatment, and the experience soured what was an otherwise relatively pleasant vacation. We are still unsure whether there was a miscommunication between the front desk and the bellhop, but, such a miscommunication, on a property with a mere 65 rooms or so, should not have happened.
The Reefs is undergoing construction, so it is difficult to imagine what it would be like when it is fully operational. The friendly staff, although likely biased, touted the greatness of the Reefs when it is fully operational. In a few years, we might revisit the Reefs, but at the moment, we are looking forward to trying out a new property on the island.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Widely recognized as the best hotel in Bermuda, this award-winning and intimate hotel offers spectacular ocean views from every room. Perched along limestone cliffs overlooking its own private beach you'll enjoy legendary Bermudian hospitality and gourmet dining at three different restaurants. The Reefs is one place where you will feel perfectly at ease. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Orbitz, Cheap Tickets, Hotwire, getaroom.com, Priceline, TripOnline SA, Evoline ltd, HotelQuickly and Cancelon so you can book your The Reefs reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- The Reefs Hotel Southampton
- Reefs Hotel Southampton
- Reefs Resort Southampton
- The Reefs Bermuda/Southampton Parish
- Reefs Bermuda