Arrived to poor weather at the beginning of February 06, which dampened our spirits, literally! Surprised at the strength of the wind off the Atlantic side of the peninsula which blew for the whole two weeks we were there. The sheltered beach in the bay was much appreciated, though in the second week, which was in the school holidays, it became a little crowded. Sand was excellent though and despite crowds sunbeds were usually available somewhere. Beach grill facility could have been better, but you can get a proper lunch in two of the restaurants. However, a pina colada from the beach drinks buggy soon put things to rights!
Sea in the bay was rather murky and not too pleasant to swim in and sea on Atlantic side very seaweedy and choppy. Water sports OK, but beach staff were a little indifferent and any instruction patchy in quality.
Rooms adequate, but nothing special. Though everything was in working order, our bathroom did need rennovating. TV channel options limited. Soundproofing of rooms was excellent. The bed was very comfortable. Everything was cleaned well - but we were never left the correct number of towels after room service and had to call housekeeping every other day for the missing towels. They came quickly though and with a smile, so no lasting damage done. If hotel full, shower early for dinner, as water pressure can all but disappear by 6pm for about half an hour or so.
Not much to do in evenings, some entertainment during mealtimes (Good singing and combos). We didn't enjoy the nightclub/casino - too smokey and in need of some loving care.
Food very good - especially liked Docksiders, where staff very friendly and professional - great atmosphere. Also liked Coco's at lunchtime. Rainbow Garden was too large and impersonal. You need to book early every day to get the restaurant of your choice at a time of your choice.
We liked the wildlife - lots of birds - diving pelicans in the bay, a frigate bird that would come over every pm to buzz the seagulls, and lots of nectar loving tiny birds around in the garden areas. Saw plenty of fish around the bay - and on one day we saw a stingray there. We didn't have too much of a problem with Mosquitos/sand flies, though we met people who had been bitten. We think the wind must have blown the pesky critters elsewhere!
Building work going on near to main swimming pool on atlantic side of hotel, but it was not intrusive at all. When completed it will make the area a little too crowded in our opinion, and possibly may spoil some of the views of the Atlantic.
Hotel is a little isolated. English Harbour is nearest tourist area and is about 5 miles away but well worth a visit. Taxis not cheap if less than 4 people sharing. Hired a car to explore island, but apart from a few happy finds, such as Pigeon Beach at Falmouth Harbour, didn't find too much of interest on the island. Need a good map, as there are very few road signs.
Can recommend the boat trip round the island organised through our Virgin Holiday rep. Obey boat crew's instructions when sea is choppy to avoid injury - Atlantic Ocean is unforgiving! Someone on our trip taken off with injured nose. Loved the snorkelling and the lunch was good too. Cheery crew made the day even more enjoyable.
Overall we felt that the St James's Club was a friendly and pleasant place to stay for two weeks in our Winter, however in our opinion it is not what we would call a 'luxury' hotel. We did see some other hotels which looked better, but would be far more expensive.
We had originally thought of staying at Sandals, but are glad we didn't, having visited the site. the building work is massive. The beach was very crowded, as cruise ship passengers are taken there by taxis when ships dock for the day at St John's.
One last point. Airport facilities are very poor. Not enough seats, loos, or eating places. It can get very overcrowded.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to the All-Inclusive St. James's Club & Villas, Antigua's most famous address. This beautiful resort is ideally located on a private, 100-acre peninsula. You will love our two white sand beaches, water sports, tennis, four restaurants, indoor and outdoor bars, beach bar & grill, luxurious spa & salon, freshwater swimming pools, supervised Kids Club, wide array of water sports, Scuba diving, and so much more. One of the Caribbean's most popular all-inclusive resorts. Excellent for couples, honeymooners, families, and friends. Located just minutes from major attractions like English Harbour, Nelson's Dockyard, and the lively Shirley Heights. Our warm and welcoming staff and management team will make your stay wonderful and memorable. We look forward to seeing you soon! ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- St. James`s Club Hotel Mamora Bay
- St James Club Antigua
- St Jamess Hotel
- St Jamess Resort
- St James Antigua
- St Jamess Club Antigua
- St. James's Club & Villas Antigua/Mamora Bay