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The Reef at Atlantis, Autograph Collection
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Reviewed August 1, 2008

My mom and I just returned from The Reef. We stayed from July 23 - 28.

Airport Transportation:

I visited tripadvisor almost every week before my trip and read reviews of this young man, Junior. Junior transferred us from the airport to The Reef. My mom and I were so pleased with his service and HIGHLY IMPRESSED with his professionalism (and I'm not easily impressed) we used him for transportation for the duration of our stay. Junior is very knowledgeable about where to eat, shop, and party. He is very trustworthy, I felt very comfortable with him. If you are visitig the Bahamas his number is 242-436-1699 or e-mail jcblue242@yahoo.com. You should CERTAINLY use his service.

The Reef:

Let me get the bad part out the way first....when arrived we checked in, we checked in around 6PM, and the room we received had not been cleaned. We called the manager and he promptly sent someone to clean it and gave us a credit on our bill. He offered another comparable room but we liked the location of our original room.

WARNING!!!!!!
If you are going to get in the lazy river be careful some of the currents are very strong. My mom and I were flipped over and was taken with the current. The bottom of the lazy river is VERY rough we both suffered scratches and abrasion to our elbows and knees that had to be treated by the nurse on staff. The river is very fun just be careful. I seen other adults and children getting out with injuries.

Ok .... now for the good......
The resort is beautiful I was spoiled. We stayed in an oceanview studio, which is plenty of room for 2 -4 people (they have a pull out sofa). The bed was heaven on earth. The decor in the room and around the resort is beautiful. (See photos) The staff was friendly and courteous.

The Reef and the Cove were not as crowded as the other towers. They were nice to visit but I am glad we were staying at the Reef.

The view from the room was breathtaking.

FOOD:

The food is expensive but it's vacation and you have been warned.

The MESA Grill was excellent, the NY Strip was very tasty and the desert, banana bread pudding, was great.

Mosaic breakfast buffet was also good the omlette station was superb.

Try Twin Brothers at the fish fry, they have excellent Conch Chowder and Conch Salad. They have a signature drink called Seeing Double the best drink in Bahamas for $6. The prices for the food here are reasonable.

Coconuts, this restaurant was recommended by our driver Junior. The Conch Fritters and Grilled Shrimp were good. After 11 the bar area turns into a lounge.

Shark Bites near the pool has good food and drinks.

ACTIVITIES:

Dolphin Cay, I participated in the Deep Swim program. The was one of my best experiences in life. You are actually swimming side by side with dolphins. The foot push was fun. My mom purchased a beach pass and observed from the sideline. She was given a covered beach chair and unlimited non-alcholoic beverages. She was so close she was able to take photos of the swim.

Parasailing and Jet Skiing. Never pay the first price they quote. I went parasailing for $45 and I was quoted $60. Same with jet ski.

Happy Trails horseback riding. The ride was 90 minutes. My mother rides horses so she wanted to actually ride. You are walkig the horses on a trail through the city and to the beach. This was fun. Request Chester he was fun and listened well.

Aquaventure, you must do this before you leave. The water slides were SOOOOOO fun. I tried every slide.

The beach was beautiful. The private beach behind the Reef was fun. It's was never overcrowded. We were always able to get a beach chair. The pools were the same... never overcrowded.

The Straw Market, this is a great place to get your souvenirs. You can bargain here. Never pay the first price you are quoted. They have interesting fans, photo albums, and various straw items that can be personalized.

The Casino, was a lot of fun. I won on the Roulette Table. When you are gambling you receive free drinks. In addition to our drinks, my mom and I ordered bottles of water to take back to the room. This helped because water is $4 for a small bottle.

Club Aura in the casino was a nice place to party. Mariah Carey and Nick Canon partyed there Friday night.

Fluid Lounge is a also a fun nightclub. This is where the locals party.


All in all the I had an unforgettable trip. I am returning in April for my birthday I will DEFINITELY stay here again. If you would like to email me for more info ..... lakishaevans@yahoo.com

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank flawlez66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 30, 2008

My husband and I recently visited Atlantis and stayed at the Reef for 5 nights/6 days. It was abolutely amazing! Ever single thing about it was gorgeous! We are in our late 20s, no kids and we feel like we made the best decision by staying there. you almost felt that you were in a different resort than the main atlanits. Dont get me wrong, Atlantis is beautiful, but it is very crowded and there are MANY kids...but that is what it is all about. So staying at the Reefgave us the best of both worlds.

ROOM: We booked a terrace view studio and we were "upgraded" to a partial oceanview. IT was gorgeous!!!!! the room was IMMACULATE and that is one of the most important things when i go away. It had a huge bathroom, separate shower, double sink all with granite, king bed, GORGOEUS terrace and every room has a kitchenette, but so tastefully done.
The grounds were amazing. everything by the Reef/Cove area were picture perfect, manicured, etc....you get the picture.

FOOD: we did the Gourmet Dining plan and chose the one that was for the COve/Reef Guests. Honestly, dont think i would do a meal plan again. it was 100% to our benefit for breakfast bc we ate at Mosaic everyday, but it worked out in our favor for some of the dinners, but not alll. SOi do think we lost out by using it.
The thing is it costs you a lot so to make it worthwhile you have o eat a lot and somtimes its too much.
Here is where we ate:
BREAKFAST: mosaic-- GREAT FOOD , loved the set up, choices were great and there was sooo much food!!!
Sunday Brunch: the day we arrived we were able to go to the Sunday brunch they were having and it was soooo nice. a great way to start the trip!
Dinner #1: Mesa- AWESOME!!! Worth it!!! Loved it so much!!!
Dinner #2: Cafe at the great Hall of Waters---- HATED IT!!!!! total waste of our time, money and everything else. It truly was a horrible meal and the service was horendous. I agree with the previous poster!!! We sat there for 3 hrs and left hungry and so upset! (that was our bad experience)
Dinner #3: Casa di Angelo- Another AWESOME MEAL!!!!! loved it so much! Service great!!! Food GREAT!!!
Dinner #4: Bahamian Club- MY FAVORITE! Very good and we way over the cost of the meal plan that night. For 2 the bill was $350!!! But it was totally great!
Dinner #5: See we were stuck this night . We didnt want to go to Carmines bc we live in NY and lets face it...we can go there ANYTIME! And some of the rest. that were part of the meal plan were closed which was a real problem b/c it made it hard for us to make use of the plan that night. We really didnt want to repeat a rest. even thought we loved 3 of them bc we were on vacation and like to try new things, so we choose Atlas Bar and Grill----Drinks were great but that is about it.....our bill was 60 bucks, so Atlantis definately made out on us that last night! Burgers werent good at all (and you would think since it said GRILL in the title!!)

POOL: the pools were awesome and we spent most of the time at the Cascades pool. Beach was nice, water was sooo warm!

All in thing said, we really had a great time and would 100% return just do things differently. No meal plan next time and i think it would make a difference. We would then have gotten to go to some other places within Atlantis! (wanted to try the steakhouse but since it wasnt on the plan we didnt!)

i am still dreaming about the coconut French toast at Mosaic!!!

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank 7706bride
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2008

Our family of six traveled stayed at The Reef for five days after being on Harbour Island for six days. The Reef made a stay at the Atlantis as pleasurable as it could be. We booked a two bedroom unit for our stay and it was modern, clean and comfortable. Our children are 4, 6, 8 and 10 and we had plenty of room in our unit. One thing we did not know though was that a two-bedroom unit is really a one bedroom and a studio, so we had two kitchens. There are outer hall doors that can be closed, thereby connecting the two seperate units. One problem with that was that the double doors in the hall could be easily pushed open, even when locked, so each night we propped open the doors to the two seperate units and baricaded the outer doors with luggage and dining chairs. At $1,600 per night I did not expect to do this. (hint: If you book a one bedroom and a studio, it is less expensive. My sister did this since she had teens and didn't care to be in the room with them. She saved 400 per night and received the exact same set up. They don't have actual two bedroom units.) I enjoyed our ocean view and the unit very much. The kitchen was nice and we ate in each morning. There is a small grocery in the lobby where one can purchase cereals and such. It is very pricey, but it is easier than dressing four children and looking for breakfast.

The Reef has no resteraunts on its property. So plan on dining off property. I did use the Starbucks each morning. The baristas at this Starbucks made perfect cappucinnos every time...that is hard to find in the states! We ate at Mesa Grill, which is in the Cove next door, two nights and it was fabulous both times. Once, we took our four children, the staff was very accomodating and the children enjoyed their meal. Mesa does not have a children's menu though, so if your children have to have chicken fingers, skip it. We ate lunch at a different pool local each day and found the food to be very mediocre and very over priced. But what do you do when the family is hungry? Disney is a bargain compared to the Atlantis food! Get ready. We estimated that dining for six cost about $450 per day, and we are not drinkers. One evening we left property and went across the bridge to a local establishment, The Poop Deck. It was delicous. Guests choose the seafood off of ice and the cook grills it for them. It reminded me of dining on seafood in Greece. I would say that it was a nice local experience. I did not like the area very much and we did not leave Paradise Island again. One of our best meals was had at the Ocean Club. We took our family and my sister's family and dined at Dune. We had a beautiful meal and I can't wait to return to the property without children with my husband. The staff was exceptional as was the meal.

I would highly recomend staying at the Reef. Had I stayed at any other building at Atlantis I would have been miserable. My children loved the Atlantis, but my husband I would be happy if we never have to see it again. Away from the Cove and Reef area, the property is crowded, dirty, and nerve wracking: Reef brings you peace and tranquility when you return. It is quite, it was never crowded, and it was always clean. We would come back in the afternoon and swim in peace. Around the Royal Towers area, don't think that you will find anywhere to sit. I think it is too filled with people who are day tripping. Also, there were cups sitting everywhere, dirty diapers, beer cans and old food. I couldn't wait to get away! Only those staying at the Reef and Cove can enjoy their pools. The beaches were clean and not at all crowded in the Reef area. The towels are much nicer at the Reef too. My neices who are 14 complained about the pool attendens constanly hitting on them around the water slides and lazy river. It made them uncomfortable and often they wouldn't go in certain areas each day. I think the staff thought this is acceptable behavior.

We did not do any of the exta activities, as they cost way too much. Walking with the sharks was $150 per child for 30 minutes--not worth $600 to me. Swimming with dolphins was hundreds of dollars for a 30 minute experience. We didn't do that either (my children swam with dolphins in the wild every day on Harbour Island until the children tired of it, not the dolphins), since it was much higher than any other resort that we have ever stayed in. The water park kept them entertained though and they loved going through the Dig too. The children will tell you they loved it, and they did. Stay at the Cove or Reef though and get away from the riff faff and filth of the other areas.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank asdl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2008

Just returned from our family trip to the Atlantis Reef. I read so much before I left that I felt I was overwhelmed with cost worries and food plan worries.

Here is my recent stay write up:

The Reef for us was a wonderful choice. Away from all the hustle and bustle but just a shuttle or walk away from the action(but if you don't like walking in the heat, you may want to stay close to your hotel pool). The Cove/Reef pools are beautiful but they do not have all the action slides. you will have to walk for the lazy river and slides.

We paid for a oceanview studio, but we were upgraded to a one bedroom suite which was ideal for my family of two adults and two small children. I think we were upgraded because we did not get a good oceanview as we had a front of the building view, but the size of the room was unreal and the comfort was great, a big bar, pillows and bed were great, and books on the balcony sleeper made it perfect.

I tried everything to make the GMP work for us. I enjoyed not having to worry that these big tabs were coming at every meal. However, they made out many times on us at a meal because with the kids not wanting to wait and wanting quick meals, the buffets were not enough to cover the costs we already paid and pizza and deli were too cheap also. The only way to make it work was to eat at the most expensive buffet (close to our hotel and a favorite buffet by far) Mosaic. We had a credit for food of 280 per day and one breakfast for us came to 101 dollars and dinner buffet was 190, so together we covered the 280 tab. We ate at Carmines and food was great, but they don't help you with what you can order on the meal plan and they always make out and you pay more. DO NOT EAT AT THE GREAT HALL OF WATER CAFE, STAFF IS RUDE, WAIT IS LONG, FOOD IS HORRIBLE.
We were not impressed with Waters Edge buffet at all. Also, many hotels on our plan were closed (like three of them)

All and all, we loved the resort and it was clean and beautiful. Staff for the most part was very upbeat and helpful. I would pick the same hotel again over and over. I would not take any meal plan unless it was just a couple without kids and you can be patient to wait for meals and relax.

We did Dolphin Cay and many said it was a waste, we loved it. I will say that it is very brief in time, small movie and a 1/2 hour in the water with the dolplhins, but we loved it. If your kids are older, the deep water looked much more in depth. beware you will pay 150.00 for the photos also (how can you spend it on the dolphins and not take home all the photos)


We had a great time!

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
2  Thank bobojenny68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 23, 2008

This is the second time in Atlantis but first time at The Reef. During our first visit we didn't bring our kids who are 2 and 8 and stayed at The Royal Towers. We originally booked for The ROyal Towers but my husband decided to upgrade us for a studio at The Reef... What a difference! From the minute we arrived the service and attention of the staff was excellent! We arrived at 11am & we were able to check into our room right away. If in any case your room is not available they do have a very lush transit area where you can change into your swimwear and head for the beach or pool. We had an ocean view studio which we loved! The room was modern yet warm and cozy. Sitting out in the balcony at night watching and listening to the ocean and waking up to see the sun rise over the island was priceless! If you have young kids request to have the mini bar locked up. Every item inside has a sensor which if moved charges to your room automatically. They do have a full kitchenette so if you're looking into saving some money- keep in mind they have a stove,microwave, fridge etc.. you can bring small grocery items and stock up for the duration of your stay.
Once all set to jump into the water they have the cascade pool which is great for families- there are shallow parts great for toddlers. The beach right outside The Reef is not crowded at all- plenty of chairs unlike the beach behind the royal towers. Of course they too have a poolside fastfood place- must Try their jerk chicken and pina colada!... If you have kids and would like to take them to the water slides and tube rides it is a very easy walk from The Reef... If you prefer they also do offer a shuttle service to all the towers & it arrives every 5 minutes.
FOOD - Yes it is expensive but you are on vacation at the carribean so you should expect to shell out some cash even for the smallest items... you may cut some cost by bringing snacks and breakfast items as mentioned or sign up for the meal plan! We had breakfast @ The mosaic which was pricey but worth it!.. its gourmet buffet breakfast so we only had a light lunch every time we ate there. They also have starbucks at the lobby which offers cheaper breakfast/ quick lunch options.
Marina Village is a shuttle ride away which also offers restaurant choices. Make reservations! We weren't able to eat at the Great Wall( the restaurant in the royal towers) since it was fully booked for 2weeks... and we waited a hour @ Carmine's witrhout reservations. Do venture out for lunch to the Fish fry and you MUST try the poop deck which is right off the bridge. My husband made use of the gym and was very satisfied. I visited the Spa... and had the best massage ever ( and I do visit teh spa a lot) . ALl in all the kids, my husband and I had a wonderful time at the reef- it is more expensive but you do get what you pay for.. work hard to play hard!

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
1  Thank adventurousfamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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