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Bougainvillea Barbados
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1,922 - 1,927 of 2,067 reviews
Reviewed April 27, 2005

Can i just say before i start, that if you go here, then please appreciate the place as much as you can , because when you leave , you wont realise how much you miss it !!!

We have just come back , went 6 april to 20 april , and went primarily to get married. we researched the place as much as possible because we wanted our day to be special. I used this guide mainly. Flight over was long but nice and smooth on bmi , and upon landing , the airport is very basic , but easy enough to find your way through to your relevant rep. We were politely greeted and then shown onto our air conditioned 12 seater minibus, then it was a 15 minute nice trip through the streets of barbados, to the hotel. What we remember is how close the sea was , and how gorgeous it looked .
Upon arriving at the bougainvillea, again we were politely greeted, and walked up to reception. Checking in was easy , but when we asked about our wedding the receptionists didnt know anything about it . This troubled us a bit , but we thought weve only just arrived , lets get settled then we,ll ask again. We booked a deluxe suite , and when we got there , it was HUGE!!!!!, incredibly clean , separate bedroom , that had a bed a mile wide, long corridor, then into the main living area. tv, was fine , all the usual channels, and large patio area overlooking the fantastic beach and sea. Air con was in the living area, and the bedroom , both were great,and kept us cool when we were inside. Bathroom again was big, and had double sinks , and bath/shower, with granite worktops.
Bedroom has a electronic safe in the cupboard, which you can set yourself.
Later on that evening , we had a telephone from a lady called heather , she introduced herself as our wedding co ordinator, and i cannot stress how fantastic she was. Our wedding went superbly well , when we got married 3 days after arriving. First day or two , was getting our bearings around the hotel , then finding out what was were and so on. I havent said yet that both mine and my new wifes parents came with us, so we all went round together . The beach and sea is literally 30 seconds walk at the front of the hotel , and also the frst restaurant lanterns by the sea , is there too. I found the food great and service exceptional , apart from the men waiters , who dont seem as polite as the women. Someone on this forum wrote that the service is slow , this is quite true , but you get used to it quickly , as the pace of life here is quite laid back , so dont get angry about this.
The second restaurant which is around the side of the lanterns is the waters edge, this is a bit more exclusive and sometimes you have to book. Im really really fussy about food , but i found something to eat there.

Its nice to see security patrolling the grounds , and staff are always cleaning or brushing up . They take a real pride in the place.
There is a small grocery shop 200 yards to the right when you come out if reception , which we got things from , just to keep the fridge stocked.
When we were sunbathing we used the larger rectangular pool in front f the waters edge , we found this a lot quieter than the main pool , and it was deeper (9ft ) compared to the 4ft main pools which had a lot of children in.
Pool bar in the main pool was nice , but we are not big drinkers so we didnt use it much , although when we did , we met and chatted to a lot of really nice couples.
The nightlife at the hotel is something that could be improved , and the bar closing times should be extended. The waters edge bar closes at 10.00 pm whilst the pool bar closes at 11.00pm, so if you want longer drinking times, then go to st lawrence gap, which is 10 mins away by taxi , which there are always some outside the hotel reception. I found the gap nice, with plenty to do day or night , but not the massive nightspot that some people make out. Bridgetown is the place to go , but we only went there in the day to get our marriage licence. Activity wise , i went scuba diving , with the dive shop , who come and pick you up , and return you when the day is finished. I found the dive shop great and the instructor david was fantastic. We picked up 4 german people on the way and when in the water one of the german girls panicked a bit , and was quite distressed, dave was masively patient with her , and calmed her down enough to do the full dive!!! we all said well done to her , and you could see how pleased she was. The next one we went on was a catamaran cruise . We used sea cats , and again they picked us up and returned us after the day, We went snorkeling with the turtles , and a bit of wreck diving, drinks were free for the full 3 hours of the cruise.

Our wedding was fantastic. Earlier on, emma got her hair done in waves salon , which is in the basement of the hotel. Her hair was lovely and her nails were superb. I got kicked out of our room by emma, and had to get ready in my mums apartment. At about 3.30 i went down to reception to meet heather and the photographer who then took pictures of myself and my family., We then walked around to the wedding point which is in a beautiful setting overlooking the sea at the front of the hotel. When i stood there in the decorated arch , the steel band struck up , and played some lovely tunes. While this was going on , i had to sign all forms for the reverend , which took 5/10 mins , then heather told me my future wife was coming. I took my place , and then there she was, looking stunning she walked up to me with her mum , and was crying!! .
She said the setting got to her , and she nearly got me going !!!!!!!!!!!!!
after the wedding we had a table booked in the waters edge for 6 people and in which the singer sang some songs for us which made the other guests applaud us . It was very very nice.
Next day we got breakfast in bed, another nice touch.

Overall the holiday was out of this world , and id go back in a shot. I cannot fault the place. Obviously there will be some people who have had not so good experiences, but i can ony go off my own experience.

As i said earlier , i could go on forever but ive been typing this in work for half an hour , and im now getting funny looks !!!!!

I have loads of pictures at home , so if anyone would like to see any of them , then please email me . Ill be more than happy to send you some or talk more about our experiences there.

Thank you for reading.

61  Thank peterjohno
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
224
Reviewed April 24, 2005

After months of planning and reseach and the occasional bad review I was somewhat concerned about what I would find when I arrived at the Bougainvillea. After spending an entire day of traveling, including a seven hour lay over, I was elated when the taxi dropped us off and we walked into the beautiful open air lobby. I could hear the ocean crashing in the background and became even more excited. Since we had purchased the wedding package, we were upgraded to a one-bedroom suite that happened to be available. The room was lovely, the view was amazing, the staff were all wonderful, and the food was good as well. The room was clean and our cleaning lady was friendly and always willing to provide us with extra towels. The pools were kept very clean and we had some good times at the swim up bar. The beach was also kept neat and we only had a problem finding beach chairs one day. The wedding experience was wonderful. Heather coordinated our wedding and everything was beautiful. My bouquet, the cake, the pictures, everything exceeded my expectations. I had booked most of our excursions prior to leaving the U.S., but we did take the shuttle to Bridgetown that's offered by the resort for $6 BDS ($3 US) per couple and got lunch and did some shopping. I had booked a 4 hour tour through Boyce's tours and expected a bus full of people to show up at the resort, but it ended up being a personal tour for my husband and I. Our tour guide, Ossie, was really cool and told us a lot of information about the island and what certain buildings were. We really enjoyed spending the day with him as we visited Harrison's Cave, St. John's Church, Gun Hill, and Fracia Plantation House. The tour was well worth the money and I would highly recommend the company. The other adventure I had booked was Snuba through Ocean Adventures. This was a 20 minute shallow water scuba dive. It was an amazing experience. Although it was not entirely comfortable for me, my husband loved every minute of it (I have sensitive ears and the pressure from the water was rather painful). However, I would highly recommend it for anyone with an adventurous nature who's considered doing scuba diving. We saw two shipwrecks and even a sea turtle. My husband and I are young and very fit and did quite a bit of walking during our 8 night stay. We walked to the St. Lawrence Gap a few times to do some shopping or get something to eat. In the heat of the day the 20 minute walk may not be very pleasant for some, but you can take a taxi there for $12 BDS ($6 US) one way. There are lots of restaurants and shops and street vendors. My favorite restaurant was Josef's, which is where we went on our wedding night. The ambiance is awesome and the food was amazing. We also ate at Giddeon's, which is down the street from the Bougainvillea, Cafe Jungles in St. Lawrence Gap, David's Place in St. Lawrence Gap, Rayanne's in Bridgetown (wonderful and inexpensive local food), and El Geeko in Holetown, which was very good tex-mex food. We also went to Oistin's on Friday night for the big fish fry and had a good time. We did our shopping in Bridgetown early in the week and hit the Gap later in the week, and I wished we'd done the opposite because I found the stores in the Gap to carry nicer items. Overall it was a wonderful experience. It was our first time doing anything like this, but I really can't imagine anyone disliking this resort or this island. The only somewhat negative comments I can say are 1) that we were on the 4th floor and there are no elevators. This didn't particularly bother us but again, we are fit and didn't mind getting some exercise on our vacation, 2) there were signs up that said "no children under 16 allowed in the bar pool" but this rule was not enforced by staff or parents (there are 2 other pools for kids to swim in), and 3) we did get some small black ants in our kitchen but it was only when the trash needed to go out.

If you don't want to walk places or spend the extra money on taxi's to get around then the Bougainvillea might not be for you, but my husband and I absolutely loved it, and loved the staff, and loved the island, and hope to be able to return for our one year anniversary.

21  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2005

Just back from on April 18th after 10 days.

Having stayed at resorts in Florida, Italy, Turkey, Egypt and Morocco I can say that this was one of the best hotels to date.

*First a warning about the Bajan sun*
It doesn't feel any hotter that other sun holidays but the U.V. will incinerate you in a mater of hours. My wife and I are used to the sun and have used SPF 15 max. I have travelled in India in 45 Centigrade heat, but Barbados was the closest I have come to real burns damage.

WARE SUNSCREEN - SPF 45

Beaches - wonderful, choices of quieter Sand Acres side, or busier B'villea side. Sand is clean and white, made up of coral fragments and easy to wash off.

Sea can be dangerous, but experienced adults needn't worry.
Rolling waves are great fun to bob in. Just wade out 10 meters past the breakers and you can lie back and watch the clouds drift by.
The sea is azure blue and indigo and very salty and easy to swim in.
Timing is everything coming back to shore. Go with the flow until you can stand, then jog to the beach to miss the breakers.

Pools - Crowded kiddie and bar pools are designed for families in mind. We stayed by the quieter Sand Acres lap pool and were rarely disturbed.

Grounds - Staff seem to spend endless hours grooming the landscape. looks great and free from mosquitoes and flies.

Rooms - Stayed at ground level, 2 room suite. Large airy, cool, comfortable and well equipped. Either we had quiet neighbours, or the walls were thick, as we slept soundly every night.
View might have been better higher up?

Food – Only ate once in each resort restaurant.
Not at all bad, but we liked to get out and about.
Best food and experience at Josep’s, St. Lawrence’s Gap. Variable food at Pisces, wonderful one night, okay another. Great fun at Café Sol, cocktails and Mexican. Awful ‘Italian’ opposite Pisces in the Gap. Avoid avoid.

Good meal in Sandy Lane on west coast, probably not worth the travelling and the cost – debatable.
Caught Leory’s van most days – great service.

Sightseeing – We were lazy, but ventured on the Silver Moon catamaran and swam with turtles and fish. Great food and all you can drink.

Shopping – Bridgetown isn’t anything to get excited about, but seems to have good value in watches, Citizen and Tag Heuer are favourites.

Don't bother with supermarket in Oistins. Not cheap, not worth it. The best alternative is the grocer in St Lawrence's Gap, or the one next to the hotel.

Service in hotel – Overall pretty good, but don’t ask for anything additional to the regular service. Our room wasn’t cleaned during our final 48 hours and we couldn’t get is done no matter how hard we tried. Drawing attention to the room, just made things worse, no fresh towels, no rubbish removal, we were punished for asking too much!

Small blemish at the end of great stay.

  • Stayed: April 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
23  Thank canyonaro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Maryland
118
Reviewed April 17, 2005

I am just returning from Bougainvillea, having been there from April 9-16, 2005. This was my second visit to Bougainvillea in less than two years and once again I thoroughly enjoyed my stay. I frequent many caribbean islands, travelling four to five times per year, and Bougainvillea is one of my favorite resorts by far. Travelling alone, I felt completely safe, as the security crew is very visible. My one bedroom unit was very nice, roomy, and was thoroughly cleaned every day (even though I barely left anything out of order). I found all of the staff to be extremely friendly and accommodating!! This icluded the luggage handlers, front desk crew, security staff, housekeeping, watersports, waiters, bartenders, everyone!! The watersports crew, Ellis, Ricky, J.P., and Ricardo were the best!! They even served as babysitters, all being very good with children and toddlers. It was so refreshing to see how protected and entertained the youngsters were in their care. They looooove and protect the children. The beach peddlers were never too pushy. A simple no thank you was all it took. As stated in other reviews, many were quite entertaining and provided me with plenty of valuable island information. The luch cart out front serves the best food on the island. The beach is beautiful and large, and beach chairs and umbrellas are plentiful. I did visit other beaches with calmer water, but the resort beach was much nicer despite the temporamental waves. I will return again and again.

Stayed: April 2005
18  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2005

Everthing about this resort was as advertised or better. The studio unit was spacious, with a large balcony looking out to sea. Some of the painted woodwork in kitchen and bath need to be upgraded but it was spotless and the daily maid service was a real bonus. Our unit was on the side by the lap pool and Lanterns by the Sea restaurant and nice beach - we stayed there most of the time rather than on the busier/noisier/ more kids side with the larger pool and swim up bar. Nice to have a choice.

We ate in most evenings but St. lawrence gap was an easy walk on the beach (harder to get back since advised not to return by beach). Champers is the best - had to taxi there. Belini's also great Italian and fish.

The resort had a free shuttle (3 times a day) to Bridgetown for shopping, a very reasonable shuttle to Oistin's on Friday night and a very helpful activities staff to arrange longer excursions. We oreder groceries on line from the supermarket (----) and they delivered before we arrived so it was all in the kitchen & even the fridge. Several grocery stores will shuttle you back for free.

Everyone we encountered was extremely polite, friendly (a pleasant 'good morning' from every single staff peerson we passed at Bougainvillea) and eager to help.

One day we took the local bus into Bridgetown then out to Bathsheba (dont miss the botanical gardens there!) - a very easy and cheap trip with lots of local color!

If you're interested, we have some great photos, especially of Bougainvillea. I can give you the link to my yahoo site.

P.S. There were a number of weddings while we were there - what a romantic spot!

32  Thank Braden
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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