Barbados needs business hotels. This is a business hotel and I do not recommend considering it for any purpose other than that. It is brand-new (less than 2 weeks old) and is still working out some kinks - the top two floors were not complete by the time I checked out last week.
Unfortunately, as expected, this took much longer than it should have since it was a new hotel. The staff were being trained, and although they were extremely friendly, there were a few mishaps with room availability and our pre-arranged rate. The whole process took about 30-45 minutes. Reminding the check-in lady that I was a Gold VIP and was looking to get the Best Available room didn't really result in anything... I don't know if they even had anything other than standard rooms ready (although the reservations showed the "Large King Room" as available throughout my stay)
A Courtyard is a Courtyard - consistency is key, and the room was nothing out of the ordinary. Not overly small, very clean, and tastefully decorated. The only complaint is the lack of carpet - I don't like tiled hotel rooms. I ended up facing the back of the hotel,
which overlooks a small parking lot and residential.
I had been in a room on the southwest corner of the hotel, but asked to be moved because the rum shop (bar) just outside was blaring extremely loud music that could be heard through the walls very easily. Avoid that side on Sundays (I think that was the night) if you need to get to bed early.
I must say that this was actually quite impressive. As the second Courtyard in the Caribbean with the new concept lobby, it has all of the design elements here: http://news.marriott.com/2011/01/marriott-to-open-courtyard-in-bridgetown-barbados.html
Of particular note was the touchscreen GoBoard, which gave local information, the excellent collaboration couches, portable laptop desks, plugins throughout the center of the room, free wifi, computer centers, free coffee, and a comfortable living-room type TV area... The only thing that was lacking in the lobby, as per the new concept, were garbage cans and recycling bins - only one small one existed underneath the free coffee.
The wireless signal was fairly strong wherever I went, so I can't complain about coverage. In my second room, which was on the far end of the hotel, the signal dropped significantly... but this was besides the point since the internet connection itself was pretty slow. I installed my own travel router to eliminate the wireless signal as a limiting factor and was only getting about 3-4mbit down... not very fast. It was sufficient for basic work, but trying to stream video news was annoying since it kept buffering.
Very friendly and well-trained. Aside from missing my wake-up call once (I always use my phone as backup!) and missing cleaning of my colleague's room (without apologizing for the mistake!), the service was very good. Everyone was friendly and knew me by name!
No room service! The breakfast area was a plain cafe style setup, and I just had coffee and cereal every morning... but I wouldn't eat here for lunch or dinner. The T.G.I.Friday's located on the property wouldn't even deliver up to the room. I had to pick it up. Fortunately, I am not a fan of hotel food anyways, but occasionally if you're traveling for business, you need the time to work...
Not too bad - located on the South Coast in Christ Church, it is about a ten minute walk (turn left as you exit the hotel) to Rockley Beach (Accra Beach), where there is a Lanterns plaza with a pharmacy, a food court, Haagen Daas, and a gas station. The Boardwalk is also right there and has some great restaurants that are worth checking out (Tapas! was great and Black Pearl has amazing steak!) Keep walking for another 5 minutes and you reach Accra Beach Hotel and Resort, which has another plaza with a small food court, a coffee stand, and a grill fast food area... Ackee Tree is just beyond this plaza, where you can get quality Trini-style roti!
Mamma Mia's is a good lunch choice a few minutes walk in the other direction of the hotel. Beyond that, you may want to take a taxi, because the next real food option is near the turn-in for the Hilton, where there is a local cuisine restaurant called Brown Sugar (delicious!) that is worth checking out.
The hotel is NOT on the beach, but you can reach it quickly by walking towards Accra Beach and just crossing over the plot of land to the water... you can also cross over where the Boardwalk starts, about 100-200m beyond that point. The other direction requires you to cut through a hotel to get to the beach (Coconut Grove Hotel?) The swimming is 10X better at Accra Beach, so it's worth the 15 minute walk to get there.
As one of only three chains on the hotel, it is by far the most reasonably priced (the Hilton was almost double the price!), and lets you earn loyalty points. That was really the only reason I stayed here, otherwise I would stay at a Beach Resort for the same price. The lobby is nice, but the lack of room service was a big pain.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The all new Courtyard by Marriott, Bridgetown is a contemporary 118 room Barbados hotel opened in 2011, featuring well appointed guest rooms accommodation with spacious work areas, plush bedding and complimentary high speed internet access. The hotel is located within the well known Garrison district,and across the street from the beach offering beach access to the Coconut Beach with complimentary lounge chairs for guests. The hotel features an outdoor pool, business center, and restaurant. TGI Fridays and a Spa are located next door. The Courtyard is also a short drive from the famous St. Lawrence's Gap. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Courtyard By Marriott Bridgetown Hotel Bridgetown
- Courtyard Bridgetown, Barbados