We stayed at Atlantis in the Harborside Resort May 15-20, 2006. We stayed in a 1-bedroom deluxe villa that was perfect for our family of four. Our daughters were very comfortable on the pull-out sofa in the living room and the kitchen was stocked with anything you would need to cook meals. The washer and dryer came in especially handy since we brought our own beach towels to use each day. (Bring your own laundry detergent, though.) We packed a suitcase full of water, juice, snacks, and poptarts so we only ate evening meals. We arrived early and were able to go straight to our room to change before heading straight to the pools at the main Atlantis facility. Although it is a short walk to the main hotel, it was too much walking for our 6-yr-old so we took the shuttles most of the time. We never waited more than 5 minutes for a shuttle the entire stay and the drivers were super friendly. The shuttle to the Royal Towers comes out closer to the slides (walk inside and head to the left and follow the signs) and the shuttle to the Coral Towers/Beach Towers comes out close to the movie theatre (walk in the building and head to the right and follow the signs).
After reading several reviews, we came prepared for pricey meals and the automatic 15% gratuity on everything, but nothing prepared us for how awesome everything was! Our favorite restaurants were the Water's Edge evening buffet in the Beach Tower ($140 for 2 adults and 2 kids but it came with lobster tails) and the breakfast buffet at the Marketplace (cost us $67 but worth every penny if you're really hungry!). Carmines in the Marina Village was very good and one meal really did feed all of us plus we had leftovers. But beware that you get charged for every refill on your drinks (even sodas). We did find that you could get free refills on tea everywhere we went. The last night we walked over the big bridge to Outback. It was slightly more expensive than in the states, but we were able to eat an appetizer, four meals, and shared one dessert for $75 which included the traditional 15% gratuity.
The locals on the beach will bargain with you on waverunner rental prices and the cost of hair braiding and handmade jewelry. We noticed that the people at the resort were super friendly but the locals on the beach and in town were not very friendly -- not rude, just not talkative. Everyone at the resort was great, though. If you like the rum cakes, go across from the Marina Village to the Paradise Shops. They sell the same cakes for half the price as the gift shops in Atlantis.
Be sure to pick up an activity sheet from the front desk every day so that you'll know what's going on in the beach tower. If it rains, they will add more daily movies and change the schedule around so be sure to get a rain schedule. They also throw in free activities for the kids like painting. We did visit the pottery store and the prices were comparable to the pottery places here at home. We made two 8-inch tiles for $32 and they made beautiful souvenirs.
After we checked out we had a few hours before our flight so we just walked around the grounds, but if we had wanted to swim there is a hospitality house at the main hotel where we could have changed. The bellman at Harborside stored our luggage until our flight and we had no problems whatsoever.
It was the best vacation we've ever had. We were never bored and we never tired of looking at the marine life or walking around the beautiful grounds. I can't think of a single thing that wasn't first rate and we can't wait to go back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Inspired by the natural wonders of warm Caribbean breezes, blue crystalline waters and sparkling white-sand beaches, Harborside Resort offers Atlantis guests a vacation filled with beauty, relaxation and excitement. Situated just across the marina from Atlantis, you have access to a wealth of private amenities combined with the home-away-from-home extras that only a spacious, private villa can offer. The Harborside Resort is just steps from a harbor front restaurant and pool area, a children's pool with fountains, a fitness facility and more. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Atlantis - Harborside Hotel Paradise Island
- Harborside Resort Paradise Island
- Harborside Hotel Paradise Island
- Harborside Resort Atlantis
- Harborside Resort At Atlantis
- Atlantis - Harborside Resort Bahamas/Paradise Island