We stayed with Nick and Karoll for 13 nights in late Feb thru early March.
We rented the second floor Penthouse for our entire stay. Our welcome to Antigua by Karoll was perfect. She met us at the airport as planned, drove us across the island to the Reef View, signed us in, toured us through our apartment, and prepared a welcome supper for us (pre-arranged). It was a great first evening. The apartment was spotless, fairly modern, and a very good size, with a full kitchen, bath and bedroom. Karoll also took care of arrangements for our car rental (Tropical Rentals...see below). The key element for us was the balcony looking south and west, allowing us to watch the setting sun, the ocean, Montserrat (haze permitting), and sit back and relax for hours with a good supply of rum punch.
We did not see the Garden Apartment, but it has a similar layout to the Penthouse, but the balcony view is not as good.
We toured the "Love Shack", which is a more basic small cottage, but is still good accommodations for those looking for a more intimate and cozy place. Its almost brand new and has some work in progress still.
The flowers on site are gorgeous and a beautiful collection of shells and other items decorate the whole yard.
All three units at the Reef View were occupied during our stay, and we found the other guests were quiet, and all pleasant to speak to.
The Reef View is situated less than 5 minutes from Cades Bay beach, which is not a groomed, white sand beach, but it is a beautiful, natural, coral sand beach extending for most of the length of the bay, and is a pleasure to walk morning and evening. At low tide, there is alot to explore, and you can walk a long way from shore on the shallow coral shelves along the coast. There are also some kayaks available for use as well if you want to get out into deeper water and explore.
You can borrow the resident dogs, Jabba and Aussie Bear for a walk along the beach..they know they way as they go for a walk every morning.
The Reef View is in a residential area, near a school, other houses, and some small shops and restaurents just east of Urlings. You can expect the usual noises from the neighbourhood: a school recess bell, some inobtrustive traffic noise, chickens, donkeys, etc. The neighbourhood is very quiet by 9 pm, but wakes up by 6 am. Night owls beware.
There are also two resident cats, Zulu and Casius (sp?) who are pleasant, but will not hang around unless invited. Once you make friends with the pets, expect them to be around you regularly. They are all great company and have calm personalities.
Nick and Karoll also offer snockelling, scuba, fishing tours, which we did not do as we were on a rest-and-relax trip only. They definitely are passionate about their undersea attractions and are very familiar with the entire island. Likely a good, safe option for people who want to get into the deep water in some way. They can help with lessons as well.
Tropical Rentals is a small local car rental firm. They have a variety of vehicles, ranging in size and condition. I rent about 30 vehicles per year for my work trips, and Tropical Rentals provided excellent service, very helpful, and professional. I would not hesitate to rent a car from them! Our Diahatsu Terios mini-SUV was great for touring the island, but a smaller car would have been fine as well. They definitely impressed me.
Antigua was a great island to visit, has some wonderful and deserted beaches, great friendly people, and lots to explore (be prepared to get away from the tourist traps and dig a little deeper). It is similar to Molokai for those that have been to Hawaii.
We plan on visiting Antigua again, and are definitely keeping Reef View on our list.
R & C
P.S. We are the first Canadians to climb Boggy Peak that have been guests at the Reef View. We are also the first guests at the Reef View to be given a tour of the Cable and Wireless facilities at the top. So we got the best view of the island possible. See our review.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- ReefView Apartments consist of three unique and fully equipped self catering holiday/vacation homes - each with full bathroom and kitchen - set in lush tropical gardens affording spectacular panoramic views of Antigua's famous Cades Reef just 1 mile offshore as well as neighbouring islands of Montserrat, Guadeloupe and Redonda. ReefView Apartments is located on the shores of the Cades Bay Marine Reserve in a quiet residential hamlet - just 100m from a long deserted sandy beach, fringed with coconut palms, with walk in snorkeling available right off the beach. The shallows flats which front the apartments for miles in each direction are also a haven for sports fishermen - offering shots at hard fighting game species such as tarpon, permit, snook, snapper and barracuda - to name but a few.... Ideal for independent travelers, who enjoy long beach walks in beautiful natural surroundings, exploring the many interesting facets of Antigua's history and geography and immersing themselves in the local culture to provide an experience far removed from the generic experience offered by most other resorts. Owned and operated by long time Antigua residents - Karoll and Nick Williams - we are always on hand to help you get orientated and to know THE REAL ANTIGUA!!! We very much look forward to welcoming you to our little piece of paradise - down by the sea..... ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Reefview Apartments Hotel Cades Bay
- Reef View Apartments Antigua
- Reef View Apartments Hotel Antigua
- ReefView Apartments Antigua/Cades Bay