We were very attracted to this beautiful beach and it really is breathtaking, so much so it may spoil you for any other beach. The grounds of the place have several views that are spectacular. A public beach but the Crane Hotel has a designated area with comp chairs & umbrellas. Get out there early while there are plenty of umbrellas. They take down the chairs at 4:30 and lock down the beach at 6(?) for security. The surf is very active making the sounds and views spectacular. The sand is white and powdery. On the East side of the island, the sun is less strong as it goes west. 5 Pools – wish the one bubbly pool was heated for late afternoon dips once the sun has passed. All pools are beautiful.
We had a room in building 4. A Jr. Garden Suite booked with a JetBlue package for 5 nights. Unfortunately these rooms are on the back of the building facing the construction being done on new units. I think only the large suites face the pools and beach. The noise wasn’t bad, but we never made use of the nice balcony. Also the entrance to each building is in the back. A better view would have been nice, but so many places on the grounds have beautiful views we did not miss it. We had a galley kitchen with some limited dishes and cookware, coffee maker, kettle, microwave and mini fridge – sufficient for a couple staying 5 days. We did not cook but kept some water and soda cold and made tea. The little store has drinks, snacks, wine etc and some cereals & quick meal mixes. Not enough if you really want to cook meals, but good to have snacks since last seating at restaurants is 9PM.
Great to have an ocean view big room (the dipping pools are chilly), but better to spend money on food and catamaran cruises (I recommend R&R Luxury cruises). Our room was lovely.
5 Restaurants on-site: D’Onofrio’s (Casual Italian) we ate there 3 nights. Delicious salads, entrees, pastas and designer pizzas. The Carriage House by one of the pools – great for lunch/drinks. Wish it was open later or there was a light/casual option available for dinner. Zen (Thai/Japanese) reservations go fast because it is small. Nice view but after dark it is harder to see. We found it to be overrated and a little pricey. Having been to Thailand and dined upscale & at a beachside shack (also great options at home in New York), we felt the food was ok. Breakfast at L’Azure was ok. An adequate and forgettable buffet (but great bacon) with omelet station and canned tasting OJ – this is something they could improve upon. Great view from L’Azure. We never had dinner there. There is an ice-cream Café in the ‘village’ that has coffee and good scones, banana bread and a few local treats – we did most of our ‘breakfasts’ there. The last is the beachside hut. The guys do great service (drinks and snacks) without being overly solicitous. It is a public beach with other unaffiliated entrepreneurs selling drinks. Very friendly and polite, but I’d stick with the Hotels guys (they wear hotel shirts).
The Sunday Gospel Breakfast is at L’Azure – same buffet with extra pastries, more fruit and some yogurt added. It is more like contemporary Christian music with maybe an Anglican hymn thrown in. The young choir has lovely voices and harmonizes well with music tracks, unfortunately the choir master started to sort of sermonize with a circular narrative that went on too long and went nowhere. We’d have done better to just have breakfast and enjoy a little of the music as background through the doors. I also think they have extra staff on Sundays that are a bit less experienced. This whole event (including food) was rather clunky all around and did not fit with the rest of the resort.
The ‘Village’ is sort of like the courtyard lobby and includes a couple of the restaurants, café, duty-free/gift store, general store and high-end jewelry store. No other shops. On Wednesday afternoon and the Monday cocktail party the courtyard has local craft vendors/flee market style.
We arrived on a Thursday and the place was a peaceful oasis. Over the weekend many more people arrived: more families with kids and many more teens/young twenties (I think maybe Canadian Spring Break). The Crane also does time-shares and is expanding. By Monday it started to feel more like a reunion spot. Apparently we were just lucky to arrive during a less busy couple of days. Less hot water for the pre-dinner shower once it got more crowded. We love the place but are not sure about returning if it keeps growing. Hard to resist the gorgeous views you can’t really find elsewhere.
Service is not perfect but always very friendly – we were ok with that. The whole Island is friendly all around.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Since 1887, The Crane Resort has overlooked the pink sands and turquoise waters of Crane Beach - one of the top 10 beaches in the world as rated by the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous and most recently named the "Best Beach in the Caribbean" by USA Today's 10Best Readers Choice 2015. Set on Barbados' beautiful South East coast, the oldest operating hotel in the Caribbean has effortlessly married the old-world charm of its past, to all the 21st century amenities and services expected by today's most discerning travellers. Guests are spoilt for choice with ultra-spacious one and two-bedroom suites, and three bedroom penthouses, many featuring lush gardens, private pools and rooftop terraces. There are also several fantastic dining options, including Zen, the No.1 Zagat rated restaurant in Barbados, which features Thai and Japanese cuisine, L'Azure which offers Caribbean delicacies with an international flair, The Carriage House which offers poolside favourites, D'Onofrio's, the Italian restaurant and The Grove Bar and Grill on Crane Beach which offers light grilled fare. The centre-piece of it all is The Crane Village - 55,000 sq. ft. of retail space complete with duty-free shopping, a Jazz bar, open-air dining, a fitness centre, day spa, an art gallery and the newly opened Calypso Kid's Club catering to younger guests. Guests also enjoy complimentary WiFi in all guest rooms and around the resort - even on Crane Beach - and complimentary long-distance calls to most international destinations. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Crane Residential Hotel Saint Philip
- Crane Hotel Saint Philip
- Crane Saint Philip
- Crane Barbados
- The Crane Barbados
- Crane Hotel Barbados
- Crane Resort Barbados
- The Crane Resort Barbados/Saint Philip Parish