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“Ignore the bad reviews!!”

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Sandals Emerald Bay Golf, Tennis and Spa Resort
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Great Exuma
Dallas, Tx
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Ignore the bad reviews!!”
Reviewed December 22, 2011

I was like you . . . reading these reviews wondering whether, based on the few negative reviews, I should book my trip to Sandals Emerald Bay. I'm glad I ignored the negative reviews. This place is amazing!! If you can't fully enjoy yourself here, it's not the resort's fault. Don't worry . . . Book this trip . . . Now. You will not be dissapointed . . .

Room Tip: "Walkout" rooms facing the ocean are great. If you can afford it, get the butler service.
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank utahgimmetwo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
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English first
toronto,
Level Contributor
106 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed December 22, 2011

A fabulous hotel with great service and gorgeous decor. Beach is amazing...food great. Best trained staff I have ever encountered.

We had a wedding there. All was lovely. I would advise you to hire a professional photographer not use the resort ones. The pictures were not great.

Room Tip: On the beach villas if you can afford. Close to restaurnat/lobby if you dont walk well.
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank chaniagrace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed December 19, 2011

Sandals Emerald Bay was beyond our expectations! We were looking for the best place to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary and we not disappointed. The unexpected room upgrade was just the start of a wonderful and memorable experience. The staff (I regret not writing down everyone's name), such as Latroy at the front desk were--without exception--friendly, engaging, had a great sense of humour. No request for information or help was ever a bother and everyone made you feel at right home. I doubt there are better staff at any resort, anywhere.

The food was terrific and the Barefoot by the Sea Restaurant has the extremely gifted Chef Leon. The Conch salad, the Grouper sliders, lobster were among the best seafood we have eaten, ever. He even prepared the fish we caught one morning that was simply unbelievable. The hostess and servers at the Barefoot by the Sea Restaurant friendly and efficient and shared a lot about local life. Other restaurants such as Bahama Bay, Il Cielo, La Parisienne were very good, as well. The a la carte breakfasts at Il Cielo were superb and the fruit selection from the buffet was great. The Cafe de Paris was a regular afternoon treat.

One thing we never expected was to learn as much about the Bahamas and Exuma through the staff, including the gift shop, as we did. This made such a difference when we went off resort. Clearly, there is a lot of pride in the Bahamas and Exuma and it is easy to see why.

K'Cee, who organized Island Tours for fishing and sightseeing never gave up on getting us the 007 Tour to the Thunderball Grotto. Bonefish Olie was a terrific fishing guide--a fishing trip we will never forget. The 007 tour, captained by Ray and his son Justin, is outstanding and simply a must: incredible scenery, swimming pigs, rare iguanas, swimming with nurse sharks, a cacophony of reef fish, with a mix of local history, great lunch a Staniel Cay, and rum cake made by Ray's wife (that was tough to beat).

The weather was not cooperative for water sports for about half the time we were there, but the pool was sheltered for those days. Life is rough when you are forced to relax by the pool in 26 degree weather, read a book, and drink a Goombay Smash. The beach was simply beautiful. The sand is white, almost the texture of icing sugar and the water was an impossible turquoise. We saw the incredible photos of the beach and the water--we did not expect it be even more beautiful in person.

Would we come back? We have already started saving for our next trip.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
6 Thank Sasktraveler007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed December 19, 2011

Nice time to visit I must say. Not crowded and the Sandals staff really got to show how they can extend themselves to guests. The place is beautiful and everyone from the photo shop to the girls at the pastry shop are great. Food was very good, bar always stocked, room kept immaculate, staff running around to please guests. All of this is secondary to what mother nature supplies Sandals guests. A beach and dive operation that seem to be unbeatable with a golf course that will thrill anyone. I will be back, just a matter of saving up enough collateral. Entertainment is not a zero as some think. It seems to be plenty and matches the atmosphere of this beautiful place. The only thing I cannot say is how it would be at a busier time of year.

Room Tip: Higher floors on the concierge level have a ocean view but first floor allows you to walk out of you...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank twoforsea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed December 19, 2011

I just returned from a 4 day vacation/honeymoon at Sandals emerald Bay Dec 7th till the 11th. Alot of things are misleading about this resort. Let me just stay we travel alot have stayed in 5 star hotels and All inclusive's in the past. Here are the list of issues I have with this property. Some advice. If you do book a trip with Sandals use twinsburg travel. With out them we would have eaten at a buffet the whole trip. They were able to book our reservations in advance of arrival and can arrange upgrades if available. They were great even when our flight got canceled the saved our trip with no additional cost even though prices went up. I would recommend them to anyone booking a vacation.
The property - 10 mins from airport. Awesome beach. This property is not new!!!
It is very dated and furniture, curtains, balconies etc. nothing has been done since they purchased it from the 4 seasons. not what i would have expected from a 500$-1000$ a night room. Our balcony pillars were crumbling. Cement is very cheap to repair. The bathroom was redone and very nice and the bed were comfy. Except our room was right over the outside stage we had loud music every night we were trying to both alone and romantic
The Food. We are from NYC and were worried about the food. I have to say its was very good from the lamb to the lobster to the seabass I had on my last night was excellent. Some meals were right on an amazing Thank God we had reservations in advance. There were other couples would could not get into the reservation only 2 rest. at the resort However after my last meal in the morning I woke up violently ill. whether is was the food or water?? I was sick the whole flight home in the air plain bathroom again not what you expect from a 5 star 500$ to 1000$ a night hotel nor would you want to eat buffet every night when paying those prices this should only be happening at a 2 to 3 star resort
Service. - our butler was very nice. However if you do not have butler service expect to get up and go to the bar for each and every drink or snack the entire day. No one will serve you I have never been to a resort where you could not get someone to bring you a drink NO butler = self serve!!!! also if your butler does bring you something they do not come to pick it up so it sits there all day with bugs and ants crawling all over it hotel staff walks by no one would even think to pick it up and sine there are not any garbage can you cant really do it your self. I have never been anywhere where employees stand around all day doing nothing. I not need service or a butler. but even at my house if i saw trash or a dirty towel i would pick it up. If you ask for anything special. Like do you have bananas today? the answer is no. The is no proactive service to see if they have any in back. It is very hard to get a straight answer out of anyone. For example. We inquired about snorkeling equ. I asked they said NO. It took another set of 7 questions before i asked "so there is no way we can snorkel on this trip???" I was then told oh yah the hotel does have free snorkeling from the lobby everyday.
Weather- beach is great. pool is not heated. cabana 15 and 16 are awesome. i woke up around 7 am each morning and put my stuff out. It has been very windy this year on the island diving and snoring tripS whether through the resort or out have been canceled since OCT and i do not know when the winds will die down
Golf was nice
On the last day as we were leaving there were bringing in bus loads of travel agents to the resort. "The show" and welcome sandals put on for them from the drinks to the food to the music and the dancing -to all the employees happily waving If you are a regular folk and you are going to exuma - you will not get this welcome. You will get a glass of champagne. But you will be very lucky if you get a water or soda anything else you ask for.
There are all inclusive in Mexico for $280 that are equal of better to sandals

Room Tip: twinsburgtravel.com for best rates and upgrades
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank misscx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed December 18, 2011

Thanks to IrieLady, was upgraded to next to the top level room, Prime Minister Honeymoon Beachfront Walkout 1 Bedroom Villa Suite!! How many ways can you say AWESOME!!!
Beautiful room---two bathrooms which made it great for getting ready for dinner, which enabled us to stay outside a little longer, since we each had a shower to get ready for dinner at the same time.
Two sliding glass doors from the living area and bedroom---lounge chairs on one side, table and chairs on the other side, and a hammock only a couple feet away!!
It was great to walk just a little way and be on the beach, which is beautiful!!! That area is still underdeveloped, so we practically had the beach to ourselves!! There were plenty of areas available on the beach, no matter what time we got there, and the pool as well.
We had three butlers--two were awesome--Ainsworth and Bernard--the third one left alot to be desired. They were not allowed to reserve seats for us anywhere, but once we settled in, they took care of a cooler for us, and came back with drinks, snacks, lunch--whatever we wanted and would surprise us throughout our trip with snacks, bubble baths, towel art, etc.....
As an FYI, there were signs posted about removal of items if you were not sitting there after an extended period of time---we had heard it was 90 minutes. And it WAS enforced. Some people found there way around it. One day, a lady would show up at the cabana next to us every 90 minutes, stay 5 minutes and then leave!!!!
Food was never an issue here---had lobster tails three nights in a row, so I am not complaining!! (One night at Barefoot---our favorite restaurant, never had a bad meal there, at the dinner at Jeremy Mutton's for platinum and diamond members) and at the returning guest dinner--actually had two that night--told them they could hold the steak and just give me lobster, and they did!! Talk about customer service!!)
The pizzas were delicious---the staff at Dino's were sooo friendly, as were the girls at the French pastry shop. The breakfast buffet was just so-so---just about the same thing every day, even for their brunch.
Kerry at the Drunken Pub was the greatest---heard she was leaving and going back to England, and if that is true, that is a BIG loss for Emerald Bay. We had a blast every night she was there!!
We don't golf, but we took a golf cart out and drove around, because the views from the course are absolutely amazing!! (As are the houses on the course.)
Had a massage---80 minute upper body massage--WOW---one of the best massages ever!! Of course they did try to sell me things afterwards, but I politely said no and they were okay with that.
Did one excursion---half of the 007 Thunderball tour. Highly recommend that. I don't snorkel so when everyone was off the boat, I stayed aboard and talked to the captain and his sun. Learned alot about the Bahamas from them.
Anyone who complains about this place must never be happy about anything. Do not believe there is a bad room in the whole place. And the beach---beautiful blue water, absolutely no vendors.
And other than our one butler, service was never an issue anywhere. In fact, we were asked all the time about how our meals were, service, etc. etc.--they seemed to really want to know our opinion.
Have to thank IrieLady of course, and Sonya, Leighton, Jeremy, Kerry, Nana and Tony--to name a few---for an amazing vacation and will see you again in September!!

Room Tip: Any room is great there--depends on the view you are looking for--higher is better, and lower is clo...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank GordonGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Prevost, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed December 17, 2011

The service was outstanding, our villa was fabulous big, clean, the sea view.... wow
restaurants always very good, what about the beach.... nothing to say but you have to see by yourself

for more relaxing moment the resort have a Quiet pool !!!!!!

Room Tip: all the rooms are big... the sea view is beautiful
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LindaR15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Emerald Bay Golf, Tennis and Spa Resort

Property: Sandals Emerald Bay Golf, Tennis and Spa Resort
Address: Queen's Highway, Emerald Bay, EX29142, Great Exuma (Formerly Four Seasons Resort Great Exuma at Emerald Bay)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Bahamas > Out Islands > Great Exuma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 6 Hotels in Great Exuma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Emerald Bay Golf, Tennis and Spa Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 245
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•NEW!! Jogging Trail on property - 2.6 miles long •Greg Norman designed 7,001 yard golf course with 6 signature oceanside holes•Three fresh water pools including the Caribbean’s largest zero entry pool with a central fire pit•24 hour room service to all rooms and suites•Seven exciting dining options to choose from•Red Lane Spa with sixteen extensive treatment rooms•Personalized off resort excursions arranged by our Island Routes Tour specialists•Sits on 1 mile of the Exuma’s best powdery white sand beaches•6 Har-Tru tennis courts including a sunken stadium court•Voted Sandals Resorts “World’s Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand”, 18 years in a row•Voted Sandals Emerald Bay “Caribbean’s Leading Luxury All-Inclusive”•Awarded #9 spot in the 2012 Readers' Choice Awards "Top 12 Resorts in The Atlantic" ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Emerald Bay Hotel Great Exuma
Four Seasons Great Exuma
Great Exuma Four Seasons
Sandals Emerald Bay Golf, Tennis And Spa Resort Great Exuma, Bahamas

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