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“Wonderful Place”
Review of The Crane Resort

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The Crane Resort
Certificate of Excellence
Montgomery, AL
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Wonderful Place”
Reviewed September 13, 2006

Top 10 beaches in the world--yes! Being a Navy man, living in Hawaii for 8 years and traveling around the world, I have to say that Crane Beach is the most beautiful beach I've ever had between my toes. The Crane hotel is undergoing construction but it did not bother my wife or me. In fact, I'm glad we went when we did because it still had the charm that one could envision it had many years ago. The staff was knowledgeable and extremely pleasant--everyone, from the leaf raker to Ryvan Alexander Holder--the Head Bell hop. Ryvan befriended us our first night there and took us to his favorite mom-and-pop restaurant--wonderful food and rum the way the Bajan-way. When you go, please say hi to him for us. Room was pleasant, best sleep I've had in quite some time--cool and quiet.

Ate twice at Zen--wonderful food, beautiful atmosphere overlooking the beach. First class--moderately priced. Wife and I split bottle of wine and dinner less than $80USD.

Whenever we ventured out of the "compound" (our term), when we entered the Crane gates, it was like coming home. We met friends who bought a time share--we took the tour, impressive plans--but I was glad we were there before they were "all grown up".

Some recommendations:
- bring plenty of small bills for incidentals. Hotel charges 10% to cash credit cards.
- local food store sends bus on Monday & another day (?) to run you from/to. Stocked up on rum, snacks and couple dinners. Our room had stove, microwave, frig.
- take a run to Cutters--store 10 minute walk from hotel room. They give away free water bottles that you'll need on the beach.
- early September, we had no problem with surf--in fact it was the best body surfing I've done since I left Hawaii 20 years ago.
- Sunday gospel brunch was fun--we emailed reservations couple weeks in advance--sure enough they had us first on the list when we showed up.
- lobby had 2 computers with internet--didn't have a problem getting on
- visit concierge when you arrive--they are wonderful and will get you set up for all your tours.
- watch the rum punches--they certainly are well named
- using the definitions that trip advisor gives us to rate the overall experience, excellent is not high enough for many of the categories.
- Barbados is moving from sugar production to tourism--they all know the value of being friendly and helpful--it shows in their smiles.
- We didn't rent a car--thought it more prudent to take taxi or arranged bus for travel--in afterthought, still think it a good idea.
- Small but adequate workout facility--beautiful view overlooking the ocean.
- Only one day did we have problem finding room on the beach--off season though. Get down early and stake out your claim.
- Bajan's proud that they are hosting the World Cup of Cricket.
- The Roots and Rythm show was nice--great band for dancing afterwards.

We booked through "CheapCaribbean.com". Accomdations exactly the way it was written. Got the breakfast Best of Barbados package--recommend you do too. With breakfast til 11AM, you're set until dinner.

Good luck--hope you have as much fun as we did. Tough to get back to the grind after being a week at the Crane.

  • Liked — Beach
  • Disliked — Distance from tourist sites
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
19 Thank Barry1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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UK
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed August 30, 2006

We stayed at The Crane on our honeymoon for 7 nights between the 30th July – 7th August and had a truly fantastic time. We were a bit nervous prior to travel because we had read very mixed reviews, however these proved to be unfounded.

On arrival staff were extremely friendly and really couldn’t do enough for you. We were offered a complimentary drink in the bar whilst our paperwork was sorted out and then we were shown to our room. We had a second floor junior-garden suite. The room was one of the largest I have stayed in and was spotlessly clean. The room benefited from both air-conditioning and a fan as well as having quaint window shutters which cut down on heat from the sun. The room had a hand-carved four poster-bed which was of epic proportions. The bathroom was large with a separate toilet and the Jacuzzi bath was several feet deep. I have to be honest the only slightly negative comment I could make about the room was that the water-pressure is quite low in the bathroom – but a little wait to run the bath is well worth it when you get the jets going!

The room comes with a digital safe, ironing board, hair-dryer etc and towels are plentiful and replaced daily.

Our balcony was furnished with a table and chairs and was very private – we were surrounded by palm trees and from both the balcony and from looking out of our windows (which filled two walls) we felt like we were on our own private island. If you craned your neck a bit one way you could see the sea, and the other you could see the building works. These were something which had concerned us slightly before travel. However from our perspective they had no impact whatsoever. We couldn’t hear or really see the work from our room and to be honest it looks like the hotel is going to be 10x better (if possible!) when they’re finished.

The grounds of the hotel are very well maintained. At the base of our building there was an oriental-style pond surrounded by lush foliage and some exotic orchids.

The swimming pool is lovely and has beautiful aspects over the renowned Crane Beach. For most of our stay it was practically empty with just one or two swimmers and only half the loungers filled. It was a very peaceful hotel and probably better suited to grown ups (which is not to say children were made unwelcome).

There are two restaurants. L’Azure which is a typical white-linen type place and Zen, which is Japanese/Thai. We at L’Azure on two nights and had a lovely meal both times. The service is unassuming but attentive, the portions are well-sized and the quality is good. Our first night there we were a little ambitious after a long flight in ordering a bottle of wine, but the staff suggested we take the remaining wine away with us which was quite a nice gesture. Some nights there is music from a guy who plays a guitar and sings. He has a nice Bajan take on some old classics and it added to the relaxing setting.

Breakfast in L’Azure was also good though is quite formal which you might not want everyday. You can order it room service though.

The other restaurant, Zen, was stunning in terms of décor, ambiance and views. We both felt as though we were in Japan not Barbados. The food was superb. The only problem we really had was a query with the bill which didn’t add up, and though the staff claimed this was due to VAT it still didn’t add up. It was a little disappointing that they were unwilling to listen to a genuine query and we did feel a bit as though they thought we were making a fuss over nothing.

Crane Beach is, as most have said, stunning. There are quite a few steep-ish steps down to it, but we found these no problem at all. There is a plentiful supply of sun-loungers which are clean and well-maintained, and also beach towels which are provided freely by the pool for use.

The sea is quite rough on the south coast but it is more than safe for fair swimmers who don’t go out of their depth, and we enjoyed the body-surfing very much. There is also a small ledge with a 10-12 foot drop you can jump off into the sea if you’re game.

The hotel is admittedly quite isolated. However we were well aware of this, and I do feel prices reflected this too. We hired a car for the week and weren’t at all stuck. It is helpful if you want to try other restaurants (Brown Sugar is fantastic for Bajan style food, and Pieces in St Lawrence Gap is a beautiful restaurant with lovely food). However in terms of excursions it seemed to us that most of these will come and collect you for free.

We went on the catamaran run by Tiami and had a wonderful day swimming with the turtles, including all you can drink and a nice buffet lunch.
We also went scuba-diving with Bubblemakers, organised through the hotel concierge, and had an amazing time. For divers and snorkels, head to Carlisle Bay to see the five or six ship wrecks.

The hotel also organises shuttles to local events such as (when we were there) Cropover or the weekly Friday fish-fry at Oistens (a must-see for great food and atmosphere). The concierge staff are very helpful in this regard.

Incidentally, because I know I was worried before we went: the weather! According to all the guidebooks and websites, we were expecting temperatures to be mid-late twenties. We were also expecting rain as it was the beginning of the rainy season. It seems the temperature estimates are a bit conservative as it was really about 33-35 all but one day and we only had the one dull-ish day. It rained during the night twice and only once during the day. We couldn’t believe how lucky we were!

Overall we had a fabulous time at the Crane and in Barbados. The people are friendly and helpful, the country is beautiful and the sea (for us scuba divers) is five-star. We had the best holiday we’ve ever had and can’t wait to go back. It really is like paradise out there!

  • Liked — The relaxing setting and lovely rooms
  • Disliked — Service in Zen
  • Tips/Secrets — Rent a car if you want to try other restaurants or see the island
  • Stayed August 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
23 Thank Pufty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Harrisburg
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed July 24, 2006

My husband and I just got back from our vacation at the Crane. It was nice, but I am not sure I would return. The staff is friendly. The pool view is amazing and the beach is great. The downside is the steps to the beacjh ( a ton of them) and it is in a remote location. Zen is awesome- we ate there twice. L'Azure is average. Lunch was ok- they really need something more downscale that you can just grab in your suit- a pool bar sort of atmosphere. Same for breakfast. Also, the bar closes at 10. There is really no where to get a drink before or after dinner. It was REALLY windy the entire time we were there- so much so that we could sit our on our balcony, but get blown away! Construction wasn't a huge issue. It appears that it will be done sometime in the near future. Someday I think we will return. Go to the crane if you want to do nothing for a week- it is that kind of resort. If you like adventure or a little more life- this isn't the place for you.

  • Liked — The views
  • Stayed July 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
16 Thank JZS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arkansas
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2006

First of all, i will say we had a nice week at the crane. Definately the resort is old but has alot of charm. The only real problem we had was the air conditioner. We stayed in a 1 bedroom oceanfront suite with private pool. Our room was very nice ; just HOT!
I mentioned it 3 different days to 3 different members of the stay and was promised it would be checked out. The maid said it was as good as it gets . The temperature was well above 80 in our room 95% of the time. Our suite was missing several key items such as blender, toaster alarm clock. It took 3 days to get these items. The staff was always very friendly except at lunch on thursday the dining staff were all non-emotional, not rude, just not too pleasant to be around. Construction was definately visible, but was never really an issue for us. We knew in advance about the construction. I think if we would have had a cooler room it would have been great. I guess these problems are common with time-share properties. The beach was beautiful! The pool was nice but the water was very COLD! Not sure if i would go back, not because it was that bad, but there are many resorts much better.

  • Stayed July 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank crna53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St Leonards on Sea, UK
Level Contributor
93 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 231 helpful votes
Reviewed July 14, 2006

We spent much time in selecting the right place to stay for our two week stay in Barbados, and after reading numerous reviews on The Crane and visiting their website we decided this was the dream destination. We discounted the poor reviews, believing only the good ones, what a mistake.
On arrival at the Hotel the porter/doorman grudgingly removed our cases from the car and just managed to point us in the direction of the check in clerk. Check in took 20 mins and we were then given complimentary vouchers to have a Rum Punch while the receptionist checked to see if our room was ready. A charming young man saw us to our room which was in the historic old building. The lounge, bedroom and bathroom were large with very high ceilings and natural airconditioning (open the widows, close the shutters and you get a continual breeze through the room) . There was also a ceiling fan in the lounge and bedroom. We also had a small kitchen area. The rugs in the lounge and bedroom were soaking wet and took two days to dry out. One of the window shutters was broken and could not be closed. After a week and two requests to have it repaired a bodged job was done, but unfortunately the securing bar was two inches too wide and on checking out two weeks later the problem had still not been resolved. When it rained part of the bedroom flooded as the guttering has been removed from the adjacent balcony.
Trying to get to sleep was an experience,the noise of the crickets throughout the night was unbearable, luckily we had some earplugs which we had to use every night of our stay in order to sleep. These also meant you could not hear the mosquitoes which bit my wife continually, I was lucky they left me alone.
We were determined to enjoy our stay and were up at the crack of dawn for breakfast, this starts at 730 and is off a set menu. Sadly no fresh fruit . The Gospel brunch every sunday was a different set up , large buffet with quality food and fruit. We went to two of these and although different choirs each week, they were both excellent. Worth booking 80bds for two plus service. We reserved a table for Zen their Thai/ Japanese restaurant, ten minutes after confirming we received a call to say no table was available. No apology just an abrupt woman with a tough luck attitude. We ventured out into St Lawrence Gap, where there are many good restaurants the better ones were Josefs ( magical flavours) and the Restaurant at Southsea (superb service and food).
Next day we gave Azzure the hotels other restaurant a try. The setting is beautiful, the staff lacked training and the food was flavourless, at least the wine was good value, which helped to drown our sorrows. Not recommended.
When we eventually got to Zen, we ate their twice, the food was superb, different class to Azzure and up to par with any restaurant in Thailand. The service here was excellent, try and book one of the private booths, there are several of them. Zen also has a Sushi bar which looked good.
The location of the hotel means it is continually breezy, so much so that there are no umbrellas to shade you in the pool area, there are however trees just beneath the pool area where you can find shade. The beach is reached by 90+ steps, beautiful sand, there are loungers and sun umbrellas here. The sea has quite a strong current, so be careful. We saw only two beach vendors who were very friendly, not forceful and loved their cricket. The beach and the views from The Crane are very beautiful, but one of the world's top ten beaches, I dont think so.
There are massive building works going on as you will be aware, in all fairness this did not affect us, although one day there was piling work going on which although noisy was tolerable.
The rooms were only once cleaned before 2pm and the toiletries were only replaced once during our stay. One day no water for some time, but as usual the front desks atttiude stunk.
Staff worth a mention, Pauline in reservations, if the management were as efficient as her the hotel would be a better place. Julie (foyer ambassador) a charming and helpful girl, Lynette (concierge) most helpful and Errol who fluctuated between Zen and Azzure a really nice guy.
To summarise The Crane is the worst managed hotel we have ever stayed at, the staff are generally poorly trained, the front desk are the slowest I have ever encounterd. It took me 40 minutes to pay the account. Perhaps the timeshare occupiers post the good reviews or receive better service than we did. The good points are the location and the privacy, massive rooms, great views, ten minutes easy drive to airport.
I hope you find the review helpful and if you decide to stay at The Crane, I hope yours is a better experience than ours. That all said it was an experience and we did enjoy our stay in Barbados. Have a good one.

  • Stayed July 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
16 Thank BLIZZ-WHIZZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed July 3, 2006

My husband and I stayed at the Crane for our anniversary and had a fantastic time! The construction is really not as bad as it sounds in some of the other reviews. Unless you plan on sitting in your room all day (which we certainly did not!), you should not find the construction an issue. From the beach, pool, and restaurant areas, it is barely noticeable. We received a great deal (due to the construction) on a fabulous room including a spa tub, outside patio, kitchenette area, etc.

The beach is gorgeous, but the water can be rough (we found it great for bodysurfing!), and it is a little difficult to get to - you have to walk down a lot of steps! We loved the pool and wound up there after the beach most days (and would frequently come back to swim at night!)

The only downside (if you want to call it that) is that the resort is very far from town and the west coast restaurants. Luckily both restaurants (L'Azure and Zen) are top notch - in fact, my favorite dinner of the trip was from L'Azure, and we spared no expense eating at other top restaurants on the island including The Cliff and Pisces.

If you're feeling adventurous, rent a jeep and explore the island. If not, expect to spend a decent amount of money on cabs. We had a great time touring the island, and even managed to get ourselves around quite well.

Definitely hope to visit The Crane again...

  • Stayed June 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank Toni856
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed June 30, 2006

We were at the resort the begining of June. I had previously stayed at the Crane 2 years prior. There was some construction but, not intrusive. We had a wonderful stay. We arrived on Saturday, it was quiet. Sunday was quiet. Monday, was quiet. It was a holiday. Tuesday, was non stop construction in our face. My husband in construction and we consider ourselves pretty tollerent however, this began at 8am and never stoped until 5pm. We had a lovely patio with lounge chairs and a 27' pool that we could never use becaues of the dust, dirt and noise from the 20 some workers in our face, a large yellow crane loading huge stones into the backs of large trucks making lots and lots of noise. This had to have been the worst vacation. I think the reason we work so hard is that we can reward ourselves with some relaxtion and quiet. We litterly had to be gone from our room from about 9 to 5. Need I say more!!!! Most places with class close or at least offer half price and are very clear about their construction. NOT the Crane!!!!!!

Helpful?
15 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Crane Resort

Property: The Crane Resort
Address: Crane Beach | Bridgetown, BB18079, Barbados
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Barbados > Saint Philip Parish
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Saint Philip Parish
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Crane Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 252
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

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