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The Reefs
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All reviewsocean echocliffside roominfinity poolaqua terrapoolside roomla serena spapoint suiteromance packageprivate beachcliff sidecoconuts restauranthot tubafternoon teadinner on the beachjunior suiteour honeymoonsnorkel equipment
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Reviewed August 30, 2006

My husband surprised me with a trip to Bermuda(without our three kids) for a very monumental birthday (I won't say which one!) This is the first trip we have taken together that I did not have a large hand in planning. Well, my husband gets an A+ for research and performance. This hotel is absolutely wonderful with the most magnificent views and attentive staff!

When we arrived, we were enthusiastically greeted by Priya, an employee at the front desk. We were efficiently checked-in, given a rum swizzle and a lovely tour of the resort. Priya led us to our room, "Whitecaps" which was built into the cliffs and had the most spectacular view of the sea, the beach--it took my breath away! I stood on our veranda and was overcome. The flowers and plants along the cliffs, the pristine beach and turquoise water were just stunning.

The beach is so well-maintained! The chairs and umbrellas are set out each morning and there is never a shortage of either! The beach staff led by Glenn are attentive and friendly. One staff member, in particular, was an absolute gem...Richard. Richard is a young man but clearly wise beyond his years. He seemed genuinely interested in making each guest's stay enjoyable. The beach staff will happily bring drinks and lunch from Coconuts (one of the restaurants) to your chair. They will happily set up extra umbrellas at your request, and will answer your questions (no matter how basic the question is) with enthusiasm and interest. It is really hard to leave this beach to go to others!!! The kayaking and snorkeling are wonderful too! Floating on the "noodles" available at the beach is fabulously relaxing. Also notable...there are bathrooms and changing rooms (complete with showers, toiletries, hairdryers, etc) available for after checkout.

The restaurants are good too. It's funny I read the review before mine about the lobster risotto. That was one of my favorite dishes--in fact, I think I ordered it three times during our 8 night stay! Our least favorite food was at Ocean Echo, the Asian inspired restaurant. Now, we really aren't fans of Asian cuisine so it is really hard to judge the food. However, the ambiance was spectacular: being outdoors, on the veranda with the sounds of the ocean and the treefrogs filling your head...we didn't even care that the food wasn't spectacular because the setting was. However, many other guests raved about the food at Ocean Echo. Coconuts is another spectacular setting. On a covered deck on the beach, it is just lovely. Be prepared to have a lloonngg meal here as the servers are pretty laid back. The food is delicious though. I loved my perfectly cooked filet mignon. Eating on the beach in front of Coconuts is a must! Again, be prepared for a liesurely two hour meal. Order drinks...take in your surroundings. Grill 56 is an indoor restaurant. Good food (I loved my lobster risotto!) ---okay ambience. We definitely preferred eating outdoors. Grill 56 has an excellent seafood buffet on Friday nights...not to be missed. Breakfast was always wonderful...a large menu, excellent coffee, free local newspaper and a summary of the NYTimes.. Afternoon tea is also lovely with a large variety of teas, scones, and cookies. Oh, and we LOVED eating our room service breakfast one morning on our veranda. Just ask the host at dinner the night before and he will set it up for you!

Go to the manager's rum swizzle party at Caso's Point. The managing director, Ben Tutt, is an interesting guy and the rum swizzles and appetizer's are wonderful. Of course, the view from Caso's Point is spectacular--notice a theme here?

One interesting note, the Reefs offers a grocery service. For a fee, they will stock your room with snacks and beverages. We first ordered bottle water this way. Later when we rented a scooter, we bought our own.

Renting scooters is a wonderful way to zip around the island. Oleander's Cycles is right across the street from the Reefs and the gentleman who works there is very nice and helpful. (One tip we got from a taxi driver is to rent a scooter on a weekend day when there is less traffic and head west towards the dockyards--also less traffic--until you are used to the narrow roads and driving on the left.)

We never participated in the "dine around" program. We were going to eat at Pompano Beach but decided not to after we visited. We did a lot of resort visiting on our scooter and found that The Reefs, by far, was the best. Pompano had no real beach to speak of, and Cambridge Beaches was very spread out without the luxury of spectacular views.

We found that it was hard to leave this resort. We just loved being there...we knew we should be sightseeing and visiting other beaches but nothing compared to relaxing at The Reefs. We did manage to do some tourist-y things, but were always content to return "home" to the Reefs. I can't wait to return. This was a romantic, beautiful and peaceful resort...I will never forget this slice of heaven!

  • Stayed: July 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
47  Thank Daydreamer2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 27, 2006

Here is the bottom line I wont fill this with any fluff. I had high expectations when I booked our honeymoon stay and I can happily say the The Reefs delivered. We stayed in an Atlantic Suite #349 for 6 nights from Aug 20-26 and had every need addressed promply with a staff that was eager to please.

The Food: We are from New York City and I will be the first to say that I love and appreciate great food but I am critical and will tell you like it is. The Reefs has 3 restaurants on site and the food is consistently solid, not spectacular but very good. The best meal I had was at Grill 56 which was a very fresh piece of grilled sea bass unfortunately my wife had her worst meal of the trip there, a lobster risotto. Coconuts is very laidback, much more that Grill 56 and the food is good. Make sure you try the lobster salad. Also, make sure to book Dinner on the beach through Coconuts well in advance as they only have a few tables available each evening. We did dine out a few times for dinner and has less than spectacular meals. We did dinner at Cambridge Beaches (thanks to the help of Donald at the front desk for arranging it last minute) and while the food was good it was more stuffy than Coconuts and certainly didnt have the views but if you are there for 6 nights on a meal plan its worth a whirl. I will advise to stay away from The Lobster Pot in Hamilton. I was a bit weary before going thinking it was a tourist trap and my suspicions were right on. If you are into the touristy thing which we are not (we try to find great local spots) then you are in for below average lobster with good service in a crowded setting. Overall, explore the menu at Coconuts and Grill 56 (remember no lobster risotto) and if you must go out, dont expect to be blown away. Finally be sure to order breakfast to your room, better views and you can eat in your robe. Moving on...

Service: In one word, impeccable. Everyone there seemes to love their job and does their very best to ensure guest satisfaction. Special thanks to Donald at the front desk, Whitney at La Serena (the on site spa), and David (the massage therapist at La Serena who gives a hell of an 85 minute massage).

Words from the wise: Dont book horseback riding through Spicelands. I found a local guy named Mike Watson that trains horses and will give you a much better ride. Because its a private ride he will have you doing whatever your comfort level may be, whether you want to run with the horse or are content with just a walk its up to you. I was referred to him by Glenn the taxi driver that does a lot of work from the reefs. He heard me ranting about how poor Spicelands was on the phone and was happy to point me in the right direction. Have fun.

Also, I have to say that the private beach was absolutely crucial the week we were there. There were 4 cruise ship in that week and we actually explored other beaches including Horshshoe Bay. Wow is the Reefs better. I not only think that the Reef's beach is great because of the exclusivity but because it is the most picturesque and has the best snorkeling. Bottom line, if the beach is important to you, The Reefs should be at the top of your list.

The Room: We stayed in a Suite and have to say the large open waterfall shower and the whirlpool tub was great to have. The bed was very comfortable and the balcony was fantastic, we were out there all the time. We slept with the sliding glass doors open so we could fall asleep to the surf hitting the shore. Cant do that in NYC. Fantastic.

If you are unfamiliar with Bermuda I recommend you take public transportation the first few days to get acquainted with the island before renting scooters. I also recommend the fairy ride from The Dockyard to St. George, its a beautiful ride. Also, I recommend the Scuba divinging with Blue Water divers out of the Wyndham next door.

Last but not least, Kids. There were some at the Reefs but I can tell you the other resorts and the cruise ships are far worse.

All in all I hope that I can provide some insight that I was not afforded via this site before your trip to Bermuda.

Stayed: August 2006
41  Thank AAvKK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2006

We were recently wed at the reefs. Our ceremony was lovely and we thought Bermuda was lovely as well. We had a private ceremony with just the two of us, the minister, photographer, videographer, and Barb Jones (staff). The white umbrellas, white pedestals (topped with floral arrangements, and natural backdrop of the ocean and cliffs was picture perfect and more than enough in terms of decor. After the ceremony we dined at the Conservatory which is connected to Grill 56. It is tropical in theme and actually has an entrance to a private garden. We were in heaven.

Overall the food was great and we dined in each restaurant, as well as "on the beach". The effort of the staff to room service should be applauded. Every item that is available in the restarant was thought of. We had our breakfast set up on the balcony, and it was really nice. Much attention to detail....

We stayed in one of the Horizon Suites and we found it to be very clean. The view literally blew me away. I could not stop looking out,.... it was mesmerizing. We did have to spray a couple of times due to the ants out on the balcony, and around the glass doors, but it was not an issue. A couple of squirts kept them away for about 3 days. The size of the room was fine for the two of us, and I thought the decor was pleasant.

I have to mention that we did experience a little "race shock" from a couple of guests and staff. Since one incident was very direct we addressed it with the manager. Afterwards everything was fine. We are not the type to "feed into" such issues and our focus was obviously on one another.

We did the usual stuff......Dockyards, St Georges, Crystal Caves, Swizzle Inn, Scootering, Harbour nights in Hamilton, Beach Party, etc. However, our favorite outing(s) was our evening carriage ride in Hamilton,(the driver took us on a route through the most beautiful estates and gardens), and our day at Jobson's cove.........amazing!!!!

All in all I would recommend The Reefs for a wedding and/or honeymoon. As for Bermuda, it is surely one of the most lovely places I've been to, and we both agree that we will return.

20  Thank Wendy_1960
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2006

Just returned from a 7 night stay at THE REEFS and I wanted to say that the advice/research that I received through Tripadvisor was right on the money. The Reefs and it's staff are among the best on the island of Bermuda. (Obviously I can't mention everyone however thanks to David, Pyra, Caroline, Dwayne etc).Our party needed three rooms - 2 deluxe and 1 Atlantic Jr. Suite. Both room types are perfect for any length of stay however if you're looking for more space opt for the Jr. suite as the layout is a bit more comfortable. Under the MAP plan breakfast and dinner is provided. Meals were excellent however since we did have a small child with us we could only take advantage of two of the restaurants for dinner- Grill 56 and Ocean Echo, (Breakfast and lunch have no child restrictions). Coconuts only allows children for lunch as the restaurant is more geared for couples during the evening with Beachside dining by candlelight, (Mom and Dad did get to Coconuts one evening without our little one and the food is just as excellent as the other dining options).
As such we did take advantage of the Dine around option at Coco Reefs. Although the food was okay the atmosphere was extremely poor. We immediately noticed that the matrie'd only catered to guests dressed in more formal attire and those that we're only staying at The Coco Reefs resort. When presented with the voucher stating that we were guests of The Reefs he became bothered and seemed to have a problem showing us to a table. After dinner we needed a cab to take us back to the Reefs. This became a serious problem and finally after a 40 minute wait we were thankfully on our way back to our hotel.
Needless to say we never did the Dine around option again following that evening.
The rest of our stay at the Reefs was fantastic. As parents we appreciated the thoughtfulness of the entire staff making sure that our little one was always happy and entertained while in her highchair. I realize that some past postings have made mention of children being a problem however as long as the parents are monitoring the behavior of the little ones its really not a valid reason to miss staying at this resort. The care and treatment that they provide to their guests (regardless of age) should be used as a model for the rest of Bermuda's hotels. Finally if you're trip includes a Wednesday night stay in Bermuda you may want to take advantage of Harbor Nights. Although our Harbor Night was washed out due to a passing rain shower we did have the opportunity to eat at Portofino in Hamilton. This is a definate must visit for dinner.
So in summary:
Accomodations at The Reefs: A+
Food at The Reefs: A+
View from any hotel room: A+++++
Staff Attitude: A++++
Will we go back? Absolutely!

Thanks again to everyone at The Reefs for an amazing stay. We had a great time. For anyone else looking for any information on this resort please feel free to email me.

  • Stayed: June 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
17  Thank DWB959
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2006

We just returned from a week at The Reefs Hotel in Bermuda.
Venue: Outstanding not a bad or semi bad view from any room at any rate.
Rooms: Suggest staying away from rooms near pool unless you want to hear "Marco Polo" calls all day - very small and loaded with kids.
Food: Pretty good not great. Suggest meal plan still worth it $ wise but use Dine Around and try "Cambridge Beaches" for dinner better but $40 in taxi fare to/from
Hotel Staff: Front Desk very helpful
Room: Housekeeping is minimal clean towels and make the bed but no real "cleaning"
Staff: Friendly, polite and most helpful
Beach: Lovely raked with daily and beach attendants serve drinks/food all day
FREE use of snorkel, kayaks, etc.

Problems: KIDS! too many families with kids.
Children are suppose to dine by 6:30 not enforced by Reefs at all.
Children are in bar all night
Children on dance floor with parents doing "ring around the rosie" crowding dance floor
Children should be seen and not heard - big big problem at The Reefs.

Action: Friends have been going for years, lots of complaints about Kids nothing has changed or improved. Place is just too small 66 rooms to have so many kids.
Should be discouraged like Cambridge Beaches, Bermuda does.

Room Renovations coming soon so plan your trip to avoid construction noises, etc.
ASK when it is starting before you book your trip.

Mopeds- 29 accidents 2 fatal just last week.
Fun but stats are showing they are really dangerous.
WE Americans are not experienced driving them or on opposite side - stay clear.

Cruise Ships - stay clear on days they are around
Hamilton is getting honky tonk with t-shirts and trinkette sales. Nasty.

24  Thank MarieMarieMarieo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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