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“Small Hope Bay Lodge, Andros, Bahamas”

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Small Hope Bay Lodge
Ranked #1 of 9 Hotels in Andros
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 18, 2012

Recently returned from SMBL and had a great time. Our initial intrigue was the off-the-beaten path location, the beautiful waters, and bone-fishing offered on Andros Island. We had a personal recommendation to SHBL and also checked out reviews before making our reservation.

After visiting SHBL, our opinions concur with some of the other notes posted on this board. We quickly realized the greatest draw for their guests is the phenomenal diving opportunities offered but not being divers ourselves, only heard about those excursions from other guests. The PROS we would note are the very friendly and accommodating staff, good food, excellent fishing/diving opportunities, meeting people from different parts of the world, and the relaxation the location affords. The CONS were not really an issue for us but will pass them along to be helpful to others. We were glad to have been prepared(from prior guest reviews)for the "rustic" accommodations but we found them to be clean and adequate(although shampoo would have been nice!)We had hoped to snorkel just off-shore but that did not seem particularly good at the time we were there so we didn’t even try. Our fishing excursions were not great due to weather conditions but they were good and our guide was very friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable. Overall, we had a lovely time and came home very rested and refreshed.

We would recommend anyone considering a visit to SHBL to really understand the type of place it is so that your expectations are met. As others have stated, it is not a posh resort but certainly has a niche for those who love a smaller, simple place, in a fantastic location, with a staff eager to make your stay a memorable one. Jeff, Mike, and crew do a great job and work very hard to make you feel like you are a part of their family~

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank go2mycabin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 22, 2012

Thank you, as always, for taking the time to write us a review. I am so glad you had a good stay, and only sorry you didn't get to do more snorkeling due to the weather conditions. Snorkeling from shore normally offers great opportunity to see an abundance of life, but unfortunately it can be stirred up after a couple of windy days. Hopefully we will see you back here for more fishing and snorkeling sometime in the future!

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285 - 291 of 513 reviews

Reviewed March 16, 2012

Small Hope was the perfect place for our active intergenerational family (parents, grandparents, 11 and 14 year old boys). There is something for everyone to do - altogether, in pairs, or alone – in a low-key setting with a spectacular view. If you enjoy sandy feet, good plentiful food, rustic cabins and interesting people, you will love this place. The staff is amazing. We have been to many fancy hotels and resorts, and have never encountered staff so responsive and well-trained yet genuinely friendly and helpful. It’s like a big house party with compatible guests and wonderful hosts.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with family
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Thank NanaB40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 17, 2012

We always love having families here, especially when it's three generations. Thank you so much for your great review. It was such a pleasure having you all here, and I'm glad the boys got to try some diving and some fishing. We hope to see you all back here soon!

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Reviewed March 14, 2012

Small Hope Bay is a magical place that let's you truly get away from it all and be close to the ocean. The dive staff are highly experienced and allow you to enjoy every scuba trip. You will see acquatic life that you've never seen before, and get to swim with sharks in a safe environment.

The resort is right on the beach, the cabins are large and very clean, every need/want is taken care of and the staff are super friendly. Even as a solo traveler/diver, this place instantly felt like a second home with homemade, fresh authentic Bahamian dishes.

I would go back instantly!


Esam E.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Esam E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 15, 2012

Esam, it is so lovely to hear how much you loved Small Hope. For solo travelers it can always be a little daunting going to a new place alone, especially one so remote, but the beauty of Small Hope is that it seems to appeal to singles as much as it does families or couples. I am so pleased (as your buddy in particular!) that you took to the diving, and I really hope you decide to come back and get your certification sometime soon!

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Reviewed March 13, 2012

No cruise ship docking here! Spent almost a week at this less traveled destination, and we could not have asked for a better vacation in the Bahamas. Scuba diving and snorkeling were top notch. The knowledgible staff was eager to help you make the most of your time, weather that was technical aspects of diving, or the best place to lounge with a book. The nightle social drinks and dinner made for a friendly welcoming atmosphere. It was a nice touch that the (limited) WiFi was turned off during coctail hour and dinner to help facilitate socialization. I found the I really did not miss having access to technology at this tropical paradise.

Room Tip: All the rooms are along the beach. Be prepared for a moonlit walk back to your cabin.
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank DarrenAndShannon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 15, 2012

Thanks for posting on here Shannon and Darren. You summed up Small Hope brilliantly, and it really is amazing what you don't miss in terms of technology! Good room tip by the way, thank you! Look forward to seeing you both back here sometime in the near future!

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Reviewed March 11, 2012

No neighboring casinos, no high-capacity resort rules. The welcome of Small Hope Bay Lodge is like going to the family cottage (but with a full staff!).

We were welcomed with a cold tropical drink at the beachfront patio-bar and a full tour of the grounds upon arrival, before being left to flop onto the cool comfortable mattress or the shady hammock in front of our private beachfront cottage (that's all there is at SHBL - no sardine apartments, no "garden view" or "island view" suites). We put our wallets in the safe and didn't touch them until we left 12 days later. I've always associated "all inclusive" with crowded, loud, gaudy, and over-the top. Not so for SHBL. It's just the best parts of all inclusive, plus awesome diving packages (and fishing) and the coolest, friendliest staff and guests.

At first, it's hard to recognize all the options besides diving, but the staff is full of unique options for no-cost day trips (kayaking, sailing, bike rides, good snorkel spots, etc) and will go out of their way to make sure you have everything you need for your mini-adventure. You're not sharing the free equipment with 2000 other guests here - only 20 cottages at SHBL. Even with these activities, we spent two full days enjoying the fine art of doing nothing. Don't miss Captain Bill's Blue hole; take time out for the tour at Androsia.

Small luxuries: hot water shower on the dive dock for blissful wetsuit-shedding, personal gear storage space on the dive dock, dive sites close enough to be at the resort for breakfast, lunch, and time for a nap before dinner.

A couple more ways you can have accessible super-luxury: ask for breakfast in bed, spend a 1/2 day snorkelling, swimming, tanning nude, or whatever... on your own private island with a cooler full of fruits, snacks, and refreshments - you'll get dropped off by the dive charter & picked up a few hours later. Professional massage in cabin or on quiet beachfront is on par with luxury international standards at a very good price.

Bring your own toiletries (shampoo etc) - you probably prefer your own anyway, but these and other essentials are available at the boutique. A HUGE library! don't worry about bringing a book, ipad or kindle (but there is free wifi) - dare to pack light.

Room Tip: they are all great, all beachfront, all quiet, all with A/C or fan, all have close recliners and ham...
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Michelle E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 15, 2012

We are so glad you both enjoyed your vacation here with us Michelle. Like you, all our dive staff appreciate the hot water showers on the dock....especially in the winter months! We hope to see you guys back here next year and thank you so much for taking the time to write a review on here.

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Reviewed March 1, 2012

Small Hope Bay Lodge goes beyond the label of resort and is in a class by itself. Here you'll find that the staff knows your name and is genuinely interested in you and your stay. With no shortage of things to do it's easy to have the week go by and still have not done it all. From scuba diving the reefs, caverns and blue holes to kayaking and sailing to just lying on the beach, the lodge has something for everyone. For the more adventurous or people just wanting to see the island there are nature walks and eco tours, the Batik factory and shop for some island-made items. Or just take a quick trip into town to enjoy the island lifestyle and talk with the locals. If you get lost just ask someone for directions, the islanders are very friendly and helpful.

If your looking for the mint on your pillow after your room has been cleaned your at the wrong place. The rooms are fashioned after the hunting camps in northern Canada (makes sense...Dick Birch was a Canadian after all). The rooms offer the basics and let's face it you really only need a place to put your head after you've been out all day. There are no street lights to obstruct the night sky, no traffic or car alarms to wake you in the middle of the night, just peace and quite.

So to summarize the rooms are clean, the food is amazing, the staff is second to none and with something for everyone to do you'll never get bored. It's like Fantasy Island minus Mr. Rorke and Tatoo.

After a week of diving everyday I took a break for the last week and played tour guide to some of my family who came down for a visit. Each and every one has vowed to return including my 90 year old uncle. Coming to the island was on his 'bucket list' of things to do. That was crossed off his list, however, returning to Andros has now appeared in it's place. He came down to see what his brother Archie Forfar had built back in the 60's. That's a whole other story, so if your interested you can just Google his name and read all the stories that have been posted on him.

I have made several trips to this hidden gem off the beaten path and will continue to do so for many years to come. There is simply no other place like this on earth. Dick Birch started something truly amazing. And his son Jeff along with the staff have continued to the tradition.

Room Tip: There are no bad rooms.
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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3  Thank tad347
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2012

Patrick, thank you so much for taking the time to write us this fantastic review. It was such a pleasure to have you back here to dive, and even more so to have some more of the Forfar family join you. In particular it was lovely to see your uncle fulfill something on his 'bucket list' by visiting the place his brother came to and being able to experience Andros for himself. We are a very much looking forward to seeing you back here soon (especially for some 'Hole in the Wall' action!).

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Reviewed February 15, 2012

Just came back from my 6th stay with Small Hope Bay in 12 years. I have stayed and fished at small resorts on Exuma, Cat Island, Long Island, Turks and Caicos and on Ascension Bay, but i keep going back to Small Hope Bay. I like the consistency of the resort, it has stayed the same for me over many years-why improve what was already charming? I like the small resort feel the opportunity to meet other guests from the US, Austrialia and Europe. The fishing in the north Bight and West Side is unparellelled. this year we had SHB outfit a camping and fishing trip on the West Side--three days and two nights. It wass fun to camp 22 miles from the nearest human-great stars, great fishing and great food prepared by our chef and guide Glister Wallace.

Room Tip: The rooms are consistently nice--all beachfront,
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with friends
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4  Thank James H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shbmkt, Marketing Team at Small Hope Bay Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded February 17, 2012

James, the camping trip sounded like so much fun and I know a lot of the staff wished they could have joined you all. The pictures looked stunning and it was lovely to see three generations all together here at Small Hope. We look forward to welcoming you back for the next camping trip!

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Additional Information about Small Hope Bay Lodge

Address: Fresh Creek, 00000, Andros
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Bahamas > Out Islands > Andros
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 9 Hotels in Andros
Price Range: $580 - $891 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Small Hope Bay Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We have been catering to scuba divers, snorkelers, fishermen, eco-tourists, and relaxers since 1960. Third largest barrier reef in the world and bonefish heaven. There are 21 all-inclusive rooms in cottages right on the beach. Come experience our unique ambience, friendly staff, and natural safe environment. Our dock and dive shop are right on property and fishing trips are easily arranged. Of course, if grabbing a drink, a book, and a hammock are more your style, go right ahead. We have 2 beaches and plenty of hammocks. Rest, Relaxation, and Rediscovery ... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Small Hope Bay Hotel Andros
Small Hope Bay Resort
Small Hope Bay Lodge Andros, Bahamas

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