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Tamarind Beach Hotel & Yacht Club
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Reviewed April 10, 2014

Getting There
1 hour travelling time with SVG airlines from Barbados to Union island then Canouan. Small airport with a traditional island feel. As you need to fly in from a larger island such as Barbados on a smaller aircraft there are not many passengers alighting. We had the arrivals hall pretty much to ourselves.  We were picked up at the airport by a friendly, welcoming guy called Shannon, who took us to the hotel which was around 10 minutes away. We even had a 'mini' tour on the way.

The Hotel
The first thing you see is the open plan reception area and more friendly smiling faces. Check-in was painless and we even had a non alcoholic cocktail waiting for us; then we were shown to our room (318). The rooms are in 3 blocks in one direction, with our block being the furtherest away from reception and closest to the end of the beach. The other direction has the restaurants, jetties, gift shop and an Italian deli which sells the most delicious rolls and paninis and other tasty provisions. The hotel spreads out along a good length of the bay and there are an ever-changing array of yachts and other boats to watch. There was the inevitable seaweed but they seemed to clear this often. You can see the main 'town' Charlestown across the bay and it's a leisurely10 minute walk along the beach.

The Room
The room was so nice – airy with dark wooden shutters which could be angled or shut to block the hot rays of the sun and kept the room cool.  There were fresh tropical flowers everywhere to welcome us, a comfortable bed with an extra large blanket and good pillows, air con and a quiet ceiling fan; a decent sized tv with many channels including most sports. The first couple days we ware able to get a few premium movie channels which was great – we enjoyed watching something in the afternoon when it was really hot, but for some reason the channels were unavailable after that. The bathroom was a nice size with a good size shower – we had no problems with hot water at any time. There was a blow dryer but I used my own as the 240v was ideal for mine. You may want to bring a toothbrush/shaver adapter if you want to charge up. I don't think there was an iron in the room but have no doubt you could easily have acquired one from reception. The mini bar was fairly well stocked and we got new bottled water everyday. There was also a bottle of mosquito spray – we did not need thanks to the air con but it was nice to have it. Fairly decent Wi-Fi was available in the room. Everyday we had a towel animal and fresh flowers on the bed. As we were on the ground floor the best bit was being right on the beach and being able to walk right out to it from our little balcony.

The Beach
The beach was perfect for us, a gently sloping sandy beach and calm, clear water. Most of the time it was peaceful, dotted about with hotel guests. Sometimes though people came ashore from their yachts and then it could get a bit busy. Peter and Merrick did a great job of keeping everyone hydrated throughout the day. There is also a good lunch menu here. They have free non-motorised water activities i.e. pedalos, kayaks, sailing. etc. and Floyd, the beach guy, was always around to help. We brought our own snorkels but they had some there anyway. Not sure some of you will think this is a good thing but the Wi-Fi on the beach was pretty good too!

The Restaurants
We found the food to be good. Our breakfasts were included; there was a good choice and they seemed happy to make anything you wanted even when it wasn't on the menu. We enjoyed the fruit platter, eggs Benedict and the pastry baskets in particular. Once we asked for a 3-minute boiled egg but it was a little under done so a five minute egg was better for soft boiled; the first time we did not realise the second egg was underneath other one - cute! The bacon and sausages are not great compared to what we are used to in the UK, but this is an island after all. The first night we had a full dinner, US$141 for three courses; I had a greek salad (huge), grilled barracuda and soursop ice-cream, all excellent and very filling. We also got and bottle of wine US$32 for the room. The Italian deli also offers a good selection of wine. In general we were too stuffed to eat a full meal again, but throughout the week we did try the pizza, a couple fish dishes and lunch platters on the beach - they were all good.

The Cons
Three tiny comments … another TA reviewer mentioned the booming noise, we did experience this on the Sunday. It went on for a while, it was quite noticeable and probably would have been mildly annoying if it went on for days but it didn't. One night we had some people staying above us, there were a lot of loud thumps with every step and furniture dragging noises. Inevitable with these wooden type buildings I guess, it was only one night for us. The cost of taxis were a little high considering the distance travelled but not unsurprising as everything is shipped in. Other than the island tour, which was very informative, there really is no need to go anywhere. Everything you need is at the Tamarind Hotel or in nearby Charlestown.

The Staff
We could not fault the staff; they somehow managed to mix a friendly welcoming feel with total efficiency. Felix the Restaurant Manager was always around with a smile and a chat, and making sure all the guests were ok. The reception, restaurant, cleaners and even the grounds staff were so genuinely friendly. We also went to the 'other side' of the island to play golf, the staff at reception managed to organise an extremely reasonably priced game (off season) and sorted everything out for us. Usual price at the Trump course US$250 each! Our driver and tour guide was so good too, apparently he has been there a while, we could always count on him to get us where we needed to be and pick us up.

Overall we loved our stay, real old-time caribbean feel, relaxed atmosphere and really lovely staff. Please don't change ….. and of course we want to return!

Room Tip: Ground floor nice to be able to walk directly out the beach but may by noisy if there are people above you.
  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank kcstravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 27, 2014

The Tamarind's rooms are on two floors & all overlook the sea. We spent three nights here at the end of a yacht charter.The bedrooms are not vast but are comfortable & well fitted out. We liked the fact that the doors facing the sea all had louvres & mosquito nets. The room also had a/c as well as ceiling fans. The maid who looked after our room produced the most wonderful effects with our towels.

There are two restaurants. Breakfast was in the main restaurant & was fine, I can recommend the bacon & scrambled egg. On two nights we ate dinner in the less formal restaurant which produced an excellent lobster ravioli & pizzas from a wood-fired oven. On our final night we dined in the main restaurant and had a superb meal: our starters included seared scallops, carpaccio of fish & an avocado & lobster salad; we all had the most beautiful grilled barracuda for our main course. There were also some very good wines on the list at a reasonable price.

Lunch was taken on the beach, ordered from the bar & delivered from the main kitchen. The salads were very good & large enough to share if you'd like something light.

The beaches were well-groomed & it felt a very safe place to be.

The service was excellent throughout.

We would be very happy to re-visit the Tamarind.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with friends
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2  Thank SPPHampshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 18, 2014

My friends recently did a two centre holiday to the Colony Club in Barbados and the Tamarind yacht Club on Canouan in the Grenadines.They could not praise the Tamarind enough.It was in an idylic location, the staff were so friendly and attentive, the food was out of this world.Its a real get away from it all, pamper yourself holiday.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank zara r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 10, 2014

Yup, the hotel is a little dated, the rooms could do with some tlc however there are many other places in the caribbean you can go for swish modern & no soul. This hotel is on a marvellous beach(great for swimming) & yacht watching, the food is good with a choice of 2 restaurants & as previously mentioned an outstanding Italian deli. The staff are great, nothing to much trouble, reception which can be a let down was always a pleasant experience & the Italian management appear to have their finger on the pulse, so thanks to everyone for creating a very enjoyable stay!!

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank John C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 8, 2014

The island of Canouan is still just being discovered, for some a good thing for others bad. It's a tiny island with about 1500 citizens, the Tamarind Beach Hotel, a pretty much one lane town, a (very) limited market or two, a couple vegetable/fruit sellers, a billionaire's Disney retreat to the north and some stunning sea surrounding. Our experience at the Tamarind Beach Hotel was always tempered by the warmth of the people including the Italian management and the local staff. The hotel, the first on the island, was built in the 1990s and looks like it. It's a little tired, a little of a backpackers place but also some genuine charm and reality there too.

The "yacht club" is quite an overstatement. There used to be a "club" called the Moorings but they pulled out with the economic downturn several years ago. That doesn't mean there aren't some fabulous yachts in the harbor, but they're just passing through on a tour of the Grenadines. One of our lunches was spent eyeing the floating city that was Bill Gate's complete with a dozen launches, a helicopter on the bow and, so we're told, 80 staterooms.

For the most part the hotel had one restaurant open most evenings. The local fish was the best choice as the Italian dishes were just fair, but a good wood oven pizza. Wednesday nights were happy hour and the place hops with tourists and expats working on the island. It was a nice vibe.

Whatever you do, don't miss the Italian deli. The cheeses, meats, wines, olive oils and treats are all imported and of the highest quality. For lunch try one of the two hot entrees or have them make a wonderful panini sandwich.

We hear very mixed stories about the "exclusive" resort on the north end of the Island. Apparently it has fallen on repeated hard times since it was a Raffles Resort back in the early 2000s. While we were told a new multi-million dollar hotel called the Pink Sands has just been built by the same person that brought you Sandy Lane in Barbados, it stands empty and closed due to some legal feuding with other investors. They say this place has been jinxed since the 1990s. But, this was all third hand because you can't get past their security checkpoints to even look.

There are certainly other destinations in the Caribbean with better food, better accommodations but probably not better or more genuine smiles than those you'll get at the Tamarind Beach Hotel.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Jugendstrasse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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