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“Beautiful and easy island getaway”
Review of Coral Sands Hotel

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Coral Sands Hotel
Ranked #5 of 9 Hotels in Harbour Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 6, 2012

You have to let go of your mainland expectations when you travel to the islands. Service is not always just the way you like it or as fast as it is when you're at home, but once you get with the pace of things, Harbour Island is an amazingly welcoming place and the Coral Sands is a wonderful place to stay as you while away some time on the beach (gorgeous beach and I was often the only one on it). The food at the restaurants is excellent (had three meals at the Beach House and friends ate dinner twice in the main restaurant), and it is near several other terrific restaurants; the continental breakfast is fine - not the best, not the worst. I also ate at the Dunmore next door, Sip Sip and The Landing - all were excellent. You will probably want to buy water at the T&K, because though the hotel supplies you with plenty of small bottles you'll need a larger supply for daily drinking. The tap water is not drinkable (safe, but not tasty), and to buy bottles at the hotel is expensive. (It's an island - everything is expensive - including aforementioned restaurants.) I was upgraded to a beautiful master suite with a living room, big porch looking toward the ocean, and large bath. The bed was probably the most comfortable thing I've ever slept in in my life. Coral Sands is not the most upscale resort on the island, but I loved the property, the sense of privacy, ease and comfort it afforded, the space of it, the way it was laid out, the resident chickens, the ease of the staff with the guests, and the beach, which rivals the best of the Caribbean. So glad to know this place. I'll be returning.

Room Tip: I booked a Loft room and was upgraded to something I probably couldn't have afforded. However, i...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled solo
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2  Thank MissPattyT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 6, 2012

Marcy at the front desk is extremely helpful and accommodating. The rest of the hotel, not so much.

We stayed here for 4 nights recently and I will never return to Coral Sands, let alone Harbour Island. The initial room that we were in above reception, was below average. It was pretty much a bed, bathroom, and balcony. The TV and internet were not working when we arrived and they didn't know when it would be fixed.

As someone else has pointed out in their review, the bathrooms here are really unclean and just disgusting. The floors feel like they had a dirty mop swept over them once to be cleaned. The shower had mosquitoes lurking in it. The water pressure (which may or may not be the hotel's fault, I'm not sure) on a 1 - 10 scale, is about a 2. It would be like if your shower head at home was broken. That's literally how the water was coming out. The whole bathroom just had a really musty and dirty feeling.

The staff here for some reason don't like to knock on your door, wait for your reply, and then enter. We were literally in bed around 3pm on the day we got there because we were resting and someone pounds on the door and then just enters. She seemed a bit surprised to see us and quickly shut the door. From that moment forward, I never felt like any of my money or possessions were safe and secure, even in the digital safe in the closet.

We went out for lunch and came back one day and heard a dripping noise. The air-conditioner was leaking in the corner of the room and housekeeping must have noticed it while cleaning the room because they put a towel in the corner for it to drip on. Nobody came to fix it, we had to notify them and then they finally fixed it.

The service here is really really bad as it is all over the island. The staff just doesn't care and prefers to stand around and talk while you sit there trying to get their attention so you can order a drink. It literally took 1 hour to get an omelet and basket of bread. We refused to eat there anymore so I cannot comment on the rest of the food throughout the hotel. We didn't even go for the free continental breakfast because it just wasn't worth waiting so long each morning. We ordered room service one night and I called after we were done to tell them the tray was outside the door because I was worried about bugs and what do you know, when we woke up in the morning, it was still there.

The food everywhere on the island is just not good. Queen Conch, The Landing, Averys, Ma Rubys, Arthur's Bakery, are all really bad. The cleanliness of all of the restaurants is also in question. I guess it depends where you live in the country but coming from NYC, we found the food at every restaurant to be horrible. The only place that was decent that we ate a few times because of this was Acquapazza. Lets just say that we ate a lot of snacks from the store throughout the trip.

They upgraded us on our 3rd day to a one bedroom suite to apologize for how horrible everything was so far. The suite was nice but again, the bathrooms were just not clean. You just felt gross going in the bathroom and bathing.

The entire island is infested with mosquitoes and flies at every hour of the day as is the Coral Sands. Do not go in to their library because if you pick out a book, you are plunging your hand deep in to a bed of mosquitoes. Most restaurants on the island have mostly outdoor seating. As soon as your food comes out, you will be attacked by 100 flies swarming you and your food. It makes meals extremely unenjoyable, even with the little candle things they put on the table to keep them away.

The only good thing about this hotel is the beach. Someone may or may not be in the beach hut to give you towels though so just go in a get them yourself. No food or beverage service though so just be aware.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ADC2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 30, 2012

My wife and I spent a week at Coral Sands in a Deluxe Ocean view suite and this is our first time to the Bahamas The lounge and bedroom was very spacious and light. The bathrooms (2 of them) off the lounge and bedroom are fairly small and in the bedroom we were in, in need of some light maintenance. The bedding was changed daily and the bed was SOOOOOO comfortable. The cellings are very thin (or maybe we had a pair of elephants staying above us) as you can hear every step. Towels replaced everyday but my wife was not convinced that the bathroom is cleaned everyday - which was a little surprising.

Harbour Island is based on tourism and is expensive to eat out. Appetiser's/Starter's range from $10-22 and Entree's/Main meals average $40-50. By the time you add drinks, wine, desert, taxes and service charge you will rarely get change from $150 per couple. That said, the food at the hotel is amazing. The French chef presents beautiful dishes, the fresh fish a major highlight. I am a vegetarian and there were no listed meals for the main course so I made a couple of requests. I was a little dissapointed when I asked for a pasta dish to get just chopped tomatoes in it, no sauce which was very bland. As I said the fish dishes which my wife had, were amazing so in this case it was purely the vegetarian options that were dissapointing.

The staff are a real mix. John in the restaurant is superb. Teejay makes fantastic cocktails and the beach bar/restaurant team were all very friendly. However this can not be said for all the staff who in some cases badly require some customer training. It is clearly a laid back culture which we expected and understood but if your expecting attentive staff, politeness you may well be dissapointed. This hotel is $500 per night plus 24% tax so our expectations were high. We did not expect our mouths to be wiped but we did expect 5* service and I would rate the service at 3*.

The beach is out of this world and probably the best beach we have ever been on. The sand is like flour and the pink glistens in the sunshine. We snorkeled off the beach and there is plenty to see with beautiful coral colours.

To summarise - I would recommned this hotel for it's incredible location. Howvere, if I was to visit Harbour Island again I would certainly look to find an alternative property.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank fatty38
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 23, 2012

We were celebrating our wedding via the Bahamas 16 wedding competition and stay here over our wedding. We had a beautiful room overlooking the ocean with its own front room and private balcony. We love the fact you can walk 20 seconds to the best beach in the world.
The room was nicely decorated and a great size. The bathroom was clean and had a nice power shower. We really enjoyed our stay here and will be back soon to celebrate our anniversary. The staff were very friendly and nothing was too much trouble. Our thanks to Sima for sorting out our booking and making our wedding night a great success!! Thankyou xx

Room Tip: Ask for Ocean View! Worth the extra money
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank RichLaura160512
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2012

As noted in other reviews, the beach is absolutely perfect. The grounds of the hotel are attractive and generally well maintained. The breakfast (served on the veranda overlooking the ocean) is wonderful; lunch in the "Beach Bar" is good and the setting is perfect. We did not try dinner at the hotel.

The room was...okay. The bathroom was awful for a hotel of this price and supposed caliber; it was tiny, the drains barely worked, and there was very little water pressure. One of the electrical outlets in our room was pulled away from the wall, which allowed two rather large cockroaches in (the staff did fix this issue promptly when we asked, and sprayed the room with insecticide).

One VERY annoying item; the tap water has a pretty unpleasant taste, so bottled water is generally recommended. The hotel will provide this to you...at $7.00 for each 8oz bottle! I don't mind that they charge something for the water, but even for island prices, this is outrageous. I strongly suggest that every guest immediately purchase several bottles of water (~$3.50 for 1.5L) at one of the local stores, which are unfortunatley a bit of a hike.from the hotel. No problem if you rent a golf cart (as many visitors do).

Room Tip: Our room (#8) was in the main building; it may be that the bathrooms in the newer wing are less unpl...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Keith W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 26, 2012

We loved our stay at Coral Sands. We took a weekend here after spending almost a week in Governors Harbour, on Eleuthera. The Coral Sands was very expensive compared to our week at Hut Pointe Inn, but it was nice to splurge. We had a junior suite and it was comfortable and tasteful. We loved the cute outdoor restaurant and had some great breakfasts there. We enjoyed dinner at the Landing and at Rock House, both of which were excellent. I think that for a week, the prices are too high, especially the tax at 24% but for a few days, it is a super place to go. The staff was courteous and helpful, but it does take longer to get things in the Bahamas than in the US or Europe, that is just the way it is. We were on vacation so the fact that it took an hour to get an extra pillow did not bother us too much. Overall, we really enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank s d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 17, 2012

LOVE this hotel! The staff are so nice, the property is breathtaking, the hotel room was immaculate and tastefully furnished, the bed was kingsized and soft, and the size of the rooms makes it a pleasure to stay indoors on one of the rainy days we had. We booked a junior suite with partial view of the ocean. The partial wasn't even partial...we just had the beachside villas blocking our view of the beach itself but it wasn't a big deal. We loved it!

The hotel's library is well stocked of books of all kinds and the game room's pool table was fun to play on. It wasn't crooked or dirty or old looking. The lobby area is stocked with comfy and welcoming looking chairs, perfect for relaxing. Lobby overlooks the pool, which was a good alternative to sunbathe whe the beach gets to windy.

The Pink Sands Beach is one of the best we have been to (we have been to about 90% of all Caribbean islands), comparable to the beaches in Anguilla and the pink sand beach in Bermuda. What I love about the Pink Sands Beach is the extra wide beach, with plenty of space to stake out your own space and for the kids to play. Snorkeling and body boards are free of charge although because the beach was so windy, I never felt hot enough to take a dip in the water. The water is very shallow for a few feet into the water, which is great. Because of the winds, we saw 3 kite surfers while we were at Harbour Island, which in my opinion, can make the beach quite dangerous but the surfers had good control of their kites overall so I wasn't too worried.

The beach chairs are some of the more comfortable chairs we have ever seen. It's not the usual cheap plastic version; it's the elegant comfy Frontgate version.

The terrace in front of our room has the same furniture and the terrace is large enough to hang out comfortably. A large window is smartly positioned next to our bed so you can have the sea greet you as soon as you open your eyes.

The bathroom is wonderfully clean and tastefully done. Love the stone flooring on the shower. The shower is the rain shower that's vertically placed on top of you. Good amount of room in the bathroom. Very nice.

Hotel restaurant - we only ate at the beach bar, which had an amazing mango daiquiri. Pizza and quesadilla were very yummy but the burger and fish were a little dry. I thought it was a little too expensive for what we had but the staff was so pleasant and friendly so we cannot complain much. The outdoor seating at the beach bar doesn't feel too outdoorsy because of the wooden roof over our head. The setup next door at the Pink Sands resort was a little better, but this is just a knit.

Do rent a golf cart when you are on the island. The hotel has got plenty of parking for golf carts so you can bring it right up to your room. It makes exploring the island that much more fun.

A few places to grab some local food: BBQ Pit (thank you to Coral Sands security for bringing us here on our first night! We had some leftovers that the Beach Bar staff kindly heated for us for lunch the next day.) and the chicken and wings late night stop that is simply a window where you place your takeout order and is owned by one of the Coral Sands staff. Make the first right when driving from Coral Sands toward the main thoroughfare, it's on the same street as Vick Hum club/lounge. It was a great way for us to cap our last night at the island.

We will definitely be back to the island and to Coral Sands.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Thank lilypad78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Coral Sands Hotel

Address: Chapel Street, Harbour Island
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Bahamas > Out Islands > Harbour Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 9 Hotels in Harbour Island
Price Range: $315 - $1,134 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Coral Sands Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 38
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Also Known As:
Hotel Coral Sands
Coral Sands Harbor Island
Coral Sands Hotel Bahamas/Harbour Island

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