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“Best all inclusive hotel on the West coast of Barbados”

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Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 10, 2014

Just returned from a very restful holiday here. Wonderful staff, so very attentive - Debra, Melissa, Stephen, Sheldon and excellent Jerry running the Yellow Fin water sports. Food and drinks were superb. Lovely sandy beach, constant waiter service on the beach. You can catch the local bus outside the hotel direct to Holetown, Speightstown and Bridgetown. There are several small flights of steps around the complex. Excellent evening entertainment - just trios and duos for dancing - always finish at 10.30pm.

Room Tip: Choose a first floor room overlooking the sea or pools but not near the Drifters Restaurant.
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  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled on business
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1  Thank JBGR26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EHGSocialMedia, Social Media Guest Relations Manager at Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels, responded to this reviewResponded March 14, 2014

Dear JBGR26,
Thank you for taking the time to share this fantastic review. We are extremely pleased to hear your wonderful remarks, and in naming us the best all-inclusive resort on the West Coast of Barbados.
On behalf of the entire team at Crystal Cove, we want to express our gratitude for highlighting the exceptional service that our staff continuously strives to offer to our guests.
We look forward to welcoming you back soon!
Sincerely,
Frankie F., Social Media/Guest Relations

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Reviewed March 10, 2014

Its the first time we had stayed at Crystal Cove but won't be the last. Its so clean and small but perfect ! rooms are similar to many other Caribbean Hotels but the three tier pools are much nicer, the sun beds all new and comfy and the water sports great.
Would def return.

Room Tip: I personally wouldn't upgrade the room as the garden rooms are just as nice - ground floor rooms...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank JacquelineBoudier
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 9, 2014

Great staff and service, second time we've stayed here and can't fault the place. The food quality & choice is excellent with no repeated menu in the 10 days we stayed. Great beach front location with friendly staff - Marisa, Dawna, Adrian, Victor, Sheldon, Steven...the list goes on!
Excellent value for money - well done guys!

  • Stayed: March 2014
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1  Thank GrahamHazel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EHGSocialMedia, Social Media Guest Relations Manager at Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels, responded to this reviewResponded March 14, 2014

Dear GrahamHazel,
Many thanks for your positive feedback of Crystal Cove. It is always such a pleasure to hear when a guest has experienced a wonderful stay with us, as the needs and happiness of our guests is our main priority.
We want to express our appreciation in choosing Crystal Cove for your holiday, and we look forward to welcoming you back in the future.
Sincerely,
Frankie F., Social Media/Guest Relations

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Reviewed March 7, 2014

We visited Barbados as a family of four; my husband, daughter and her partner (both aged 24) for 10 days in February/March.

We booked the Crystal Cove and we were not disappointed with our choice. Although there are so many things we could say about the hotel, staff and resort; we have narrowed it down to a few points below.

- The Service -
From arrival, and the first glass of rum punch, the staff at Crystal Cove were fantastic. Nothing was a problem and they all went out of their way to make us feel welcome and relaxed. The staff at reception were always helpful and accommodating when booking a restaurant or taxi and the bar/restaurant staff always made time to talk and share stories whilst providing excellent service. We would like to mention a few in particular who made our stay so memorable; Hazel, Adrian, Tanya, Shauna and Victor.

Unfortunately, on the penultimate day of the holiday, the Drifters bar had been painted at lunchtime and my daughter managed to get some paint on her dress. The general manager sincerely apologised and offered to dry-clean the dress or replace it if the stain could not be removed. The dress was taken to be dry-cleaned at 2pm and when returning to our rooms, at 5pm, the dress was like new and hung in the room. The speed, communication and hospitality of the staff and management went above and beyond any expectation in this situation.


- The Rooms -
Prior to our vacation, we decided to pay an additional fee to upgrade to ocean view rooms. On arrival at the hotel, we were designated rooms 112 and 114 which were conveniently situated next to each other, a short walk from the Drifters restaurant. Although the location was good and the rooms were bright and cleaned to perfection daily, we felt that we had paid an unnecessary charge for the ocean view luxury. When in the resort, it appears that a high number of the rooms have an ocean view and many guests that we spoke too during our stay had a far superior ocean view without having paid for it. We were unable to see the ocean unless we exited our room and stepped onto the balcony; which somewhat defeats the object of waking up to the Caribbean sea.

Rooms 112 and 114 were bright and newly decorated, and although tired in places (furniture and bathroom fixtures) they were comfortable and had the comfiest bed we have ever slept in. Unfortunately, the rooms are either side of the staff entrance and therefore the additional noise was very audible between the hours of 6-8am and 4-6pm when the staff are wheeling out maintenance/laundry trolleys or preparing for dinner. It also meant the patios/balconies were very visible and less private.

- The Food -
After staying in a number of all-inclusive resorts, it is safe to say that Crystal Cove excels in the culinary department. Although we had to book each morning to dine in the Reflections restaurant, it was never a problem to find a table at our chosen time and the food was always excellent. There is something on the menu for every palate; from fresh seafood, pasta and delicious deserts. The atmosphere in Reflections was fantastic and far superior to other resorts on the island (those which we visited during our trip.)

The lunch provided at Drifters was always fresh and plentiful with a choice of hot food, salads, wraps and grilled chicken or fish.

Breakfast had something for everybody and provided a good start to the day!


- The Beach/Activities -
As you can expect from a Caribbean resort, the beach at Crystal Cove is idyllic; private and small but with a large number of sunbeds and facilities. We were never unable to find a sunbed and there was no rushing down at the crack of dawn to reserve them. I am unable to comment on the pool as we didn’t use it but it was always kept immaculately maintained.

During our trip, my daughter and her partner made the most of the water sports on offer; trying out the banana boat, rings, kayaks and snorkelling equipment. This is well managed and a great addition to the resort. After reading through a number of flyers from third party organisers, they decided to swim with the turtles/snorkel a shipwreck through the hotel. This cost $50USD for a 90 minute trip and they throgouhlly enjoyed it. TC the boat driver was knowledgeable, friendly and excellent value for money (far cheaper than an organised tour!)


Overall, our experience at Crystal Cove was excellent; and we wouldn’t hesitate to return in the near future! A perfect resort that made us feel welcome and relaxed from the moment we stepped into reception to the time we sadly stepped on the bus to leave.

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled with family
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7  Thank lolo_b_traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 6, 2014

My husband and I have just returned from a 10 night stay at Crystal Cove, we were greeted in a friendly and efficient manner with cool towels and rum punch.
The staff are really what makes it a pleasant place to stay, they are friendly and cheerful as were all the Bajan people we met, also there is always a security presence and we did feel safe at all times.
The hotel attracts quite a diverse clientele, retired couples, couples, young families and quite a few families with their adult children and quite a number of returnees.
The resort is quite small with two storey buildings throughout that look very attractive, there is a series of 3 small pools on different levels, they are small but I don't think we ever saw more than 6 people in at any one time. There are ample sunbeds by the pool and on the beach and one big plus --you didn't have to get up early to reserve one! There is NO music at the pool which was a plus for us, but we didn't see any of the organised activities take place e.g volley ball, beach cricket. Another plus is that so many water sports are included in the price--kayaks, banana ride, rings, water skiing, hobie cat, snorkelling etc, and the staff there are lovely.
One unfortunate thing was a rather unpleasant smell that quite often permeated by the toilets at the beach, it really wasn't very nice.
There is no real beach/pool bar service although a member of staff brings a selection of soft drinks to choose from, and also jelly or fruit in the morning and ice lollies in the afternoon.
There are two restaurants drifters a less formal one by the beach and reflections which is quite formal, is under cover but open at the sides, and overlooks the small bandstand. Reflections is used for buffet breakfast, it is here that the menus for the evening meals are displayed each morning, and you book which restaurant and what times you want, but when each block of time is filled you are then limited as to when or even where you eat. We also noticed that the time you arrived for dinner was documented and we were 5 minutes late one night and there was a tut, tut, even though on another occasion we arrived 5 minutes early and didn't order for another 25 minutes. Lunch is taken at either, drifters is buffet, and reflections a la carte. There is a charge if you require room service, there is also a 2USD daily charge that is automatically charged to your room account.
The food was fine not the best all inclusive we've had but no real complaints, service was usually fairly prompt depending on how busy they were and actually where you were seated, we found that if you were on the periphery of the dining room you could get forgotten. I also thought that in the evening there wasn't a huge differentiation between the restaurant menus, and the Italian buffet wasn't the best. The house wine was OK and generally the quality of the drinks on offer was fine.
The evening entertainment is very subdued, because of the limited space, the groups started singing at the bandstand outside reflections during the evening meals, and was finished by 10:30pm, and we only saw what you could describe as one show, but even that could only be partly seen from the restaurant. There is nowhere to go if the weather is bad.
The rooms are pretty basic and functional, however, the bathrooms are poor, the sealant around the bath was very messy and amateurish, there was mould on the tile grouting and where someone had tried to patch the grouting they hadn't cleared it off the tiles which looked messy. The toiletries provided are OK.Tea and coffee facilities are available but the floor tiles around the area were badly stained. Beach towels are delivered to your room on a daily basis.
We stayed in room 111, behind this whole area is a service area, and the noise from this is disruptive, as was the constant rumbling of trollies on the concrete pathways, fine when your out of your room, but the noise starts early and goes on and on and on until late, transporting between restaurants, luggage, cleaning materials, gardening equipment etc.
Bizarrely even though I don't think it was more than 75% occupancy, checkout was at 12noon, we were being picked up at 2:30pm, I asked if we could stay until about 1pm in order to shower etc but this was declined, we could only be offered a courtesy room between 12:30 and 1pm, we were told to take our luggage to reception at 12:30pm and then be taken to the courtesy room, I just don't understand the economics of this as the courtesy room needed cleaning after us, clean towels were used when we could have used our room towels, and we used the toiletries there as we'd packed our own.
So to the big question--would I recommend Crystal Cove-- yes if you really want to visit Barbados which is lovely, I think it's a good choice.
BUT--is it value for money, my overall opinion is that Barbados trades on its past perceived exclusivity which reflects its high prices, but other areas I think offer much higher quality at cheaper prices.
Last year we stayed in Mexico for 11 nights, which was £1000 cheaper, we had a jacuzzi bath in the room, four poster bed, separate shower, separate toilet, branded toiletries, your own concierge, choice of restaurants, Mexican, French, Italian, Chinese/Japanese, buffet etc, there was no room service charge, exceptional pool bar service, each day chefs brought out taster dishes delivered around the pool and once a week there was a lovely parade of chefs and samples of their dishes, entertainment was both cultural and popular, and there were areas you could use in inclement weather, very clean beach/pool toilet areas cleaned after each use with a member of staff present folding separate hand towels for individual use. Granted it was a larger establishment but my point is that maybe the Barbados tourist industry will suffer if they do not respond with regard to value for money, as they cannot guarantee that in the economic climate in which we all live, that the perceived exclusivity will continue to be a top selling point.

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank sunflowerWales
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
oskeete, General Manager at Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels, responded to this reviewResponded March 12, 2014

Dear SunflowerWales,

Thank you for taking the time and effort to share your feedback from your stay with us at Crystal Cove.

On behalf of the entire team at Crystal Cove, we are delighted that our staff left such a memorable impression on you, and were able to help make your visit with us special and relaxing.

We do pride ourselves on the friendliness and responsiveness of our staff and the intimate and personal feel of our resort. We continuously train our team members to improve our overall guest satisfaction and strive to provide a truly authentic Caribbean experience which makes many of our guests return to Barbados year after year.

We try our absolute best to accommodate all guest requests. Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee rooms for late departures as this depends on room type availability and occupancy at that time.

We appreciate your feedback, so that we can continue to improve and enhance our product and service offerings. We have an ongoing maintenance program for all our guest room s and will ensure that we will revisit the bathrooms in your assigned room.

We hope to welcome you back to Crystal Cove in the near future.

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Reviewed March 5, 2014

Had a fabulous weekend at Crystal Cove resort. Planned the perfect weekend for my hubby for his birthday but had some challenges in the beginning. Thanks to the Manager Olivia Skeete and her assistant Stacia who made this weekend possible in more ways than one.

On arrival at the hotel we were greeted with the warmest hospitality and welcoming smiles. Our room was clean and spacious with an amazing view of the seaside. Special thanks to room service who delighted us with beautiful towel art.

The resort was relatively quiet and cozy with the family-like staff. Food and drinks were superb and plentiful and service was always with a smile.

The auxiliary staff, inclusive of the water sports operators were very friendly and courteous.
Special thanks to Olivia (manager), Kathy-ann (restaurant supervisor), & Ryan (the bartender). A buzz to remember when in the Cave Bar, you must try the Bush Whacker. Good job to Sheldon as well who introduced our taste buds to a variety of cocktails. Not to forget "live-wire" Tanya, in the Reflections restaurant.

Overall the resort was clean, fully equipped and provided an unending choice of activities. We recommend anyone to participate in activities such as the water sports, mixology and the cooking demonstrations. Even greater experience done as a couple. Also, an environment and atmosphere for plenty rest and relaxation.

Special thanks to all the members of staff at the Crystal Cove Resort, can't wait until our next visit. We recommend this resort to both locals and visitors to Barbados.

Shane & Jennalee

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Shane C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2014

My husband and I just returned from a week at the Crystal Cove. The staff are very friendly, efficient and helpful. The food was excellent. We enjoyed being at both the beach and the pool. We had a wonderful time and would recommend this hotel to families and couples.

Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Rosemary C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels

Address: Appleby, Barbados (Formerly Crystal Cove)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Barbados > Saint James 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) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Saint James Parish
#5 Luxury Hotel in Saint James Parish
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Saint James Parish
Price Range: $441 - $1,328 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels 4*
Number of rooms: 88
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
"An enchanting blend of vitality and Caribbean charm." A colorful and vibrant beachfront all-inclusive property with 88 rooms offering a seductive Caribbean charm that will make you feel at home from the moment you arrive. Crystal Cove's warm, relaxed ambience and friendly service which includes all-inclusive accommodation as well as a Supervised Kids Club (for children aged 3-11) appeals to families and couples of all ages, many of whom return there year after year. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Crystal Cove Saint James
Crystal Cove Barbados
Crystal Cove Hotel Barbados
Crystal Cove By Elegant Hotels Barbados/Saint James Parish

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