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“Absolutely Gorgeous and Relaxing” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Secret Bay

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Secret Bay
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Portsmouth
Certificate of Excellence
California - Bay Area
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Absolutely Gorgeous and Relaxing”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 6, 2011

When my wife told me we were going to Dominica for vacation, I honestly didn't know much about the place and was a bit skeptical about going. Of course, as the time passed and we were packing up, I was a little bit more excited, but wasn't sure what to expect since many of our trips were places I had some knowledge about....Secret Bay Dominica...WOW!
I can't explain in words how beautiful this place is. From the staff, owners, to people on the Island...it was just an amazing experience and one I love to share with friends and family. Secret Bay is simply one of the most beautiful places Ive been. We were able to stay in both the Bungalow for a couple days and then to the Zabuco Villa for the next few days until we had to leave.
Everything about Secret Bay was amazing...the layout, its location, the views, the water, etc...everything was just perfect. I must say that the architecture of the buildings was amazing...such a unique and luxury feel to both layouts. Everything you need is available for you and no reason to need anything more. From our arrival - start to finish, everything we wanted to have as far as snacks, food, and accommodations for anything was just a phone call away if we didn't already have it (a cell phone provided to each suite for you to use while there - amazing).
I read all the reviews here and just have to agree with every one of them - Secret Bay gets its rating because it actually is one of those few that can meet the ratings and it shows. For the most part, we were sooo amazed by the Zabuco Villa that we were completely happy just hanging out at the Villa all day. Kayaks are readily available to take a quick trip to the private beach and bikes are available upon request to take a quick bike ride to town.
If you are looking for a top notch place to stay in Dominica, Secret Bay is a MUST. When we travel back to the West Indies, Dominica would be a definite stop...even if it was for a day or two. I definitely enjoyed every bit of our stay and thank the entire staff at Secret Bay for everything.
By the way...the food was amazing. It was nice to not think about what we were going to eat everyday and the cooks pretty much served as they pleased. We are not picky eaters, so we just told them to surprise us each meal as we were confident that everything would be amazing...and it was. Kitchens are fully functional and we did however make it feel like home by going to the Super Market and buying some food to cook for some of the meals we had.
THANKS AGAIN SECRET BAY FOR EVERYTHING. We look forward to visiting again in the future.

Room Tip: Zabuco Villa - amazing villa.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sirshan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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471 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (171)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 19, 2011

... literally.

My husband and I just returned from a mini trip to Secret Bay. Accustomed to traveling in luxury, we were both continually astounded by the beauty of the property, the surroundings and the dedicated people who make Secret Bay so very special.

Dominica is a Country to be cherished. We are but visitors to a very special place in the world that carries all of the precious characteristics of a simpler life many of us have long left behind. We also realized very quickly that we are mere visitors to an eco island unimaginable to describe in this review. Thus, the activities on the island are endless for those who wish to live life at its richest.

The Secret Bay team were there to make certain that our visit was flawless. Each morning began with a 7AM kayak to one of their two lovely beaches where we would spend about an hour exercising on the beach. Upon our return, we would be greeted with a morning smile by staff who wanted to ensure that we had enjoyed our experience. A leisurely breakfast was prepared and waiting to be served to us in our exquisite Zing Zing villa. The choice of activities during the day was endless. The staff hand pick a very professional and informative tour leader depending on which activity is chosen. Returning back to the resort, there is barely enough time for a short rest before you are either spoiled to another self selected home cooked meal or carried to a fabulous and memorable restaurant. One of the nicest touches was the escorted late night walk back to our villa. Not for security reasons, just to be reminded that you were there to be pampered.

The photographs on the Secret Bay website are highly representative of what you will experience at the resort. What you should expect is to be swept away the moment you arrive to the property. The reviews below are quite accurate. One could go on and on. We have already booked our second visit to Secret Bay and hope to make this an annual family holiday.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank 1WandR1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 13, 2011

Spectacular! The most intimate and detail oriented resort in the Caribbean--where luxury meets nature. Only by experiencing the resort are you able to capture how beautiful the location really is--we were happily surprised as the reality of it exceeded the expectations set by the web site.

Room Tip: The Zabuco Honeymoon Villa is worth every penny! It is stocked with everything you could possibly im...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank EnzoGB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
34 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 10, 2011

My husband and I stayed at Secret Bay Resort for our 5th year wedding anniversary and we could not have picked a better resort in all of the Caribbean! The moment we arrived, we were swept away with the scenery in and around the resort. The grounds were beautifully maintained with bright and colorful flowers and plants all around. The luxurious villas and bungalows were all set amongst the trees that it offered a true sense of privacy.

The resort has two beaches, one with black sand (Tibay beach) and one with white sand (Secret Beach) that is at your disposal to explore. We truly felt like these two beaches were all ours the week we were there! We especially were enamored with the scenery, privacy and serenity that Secret Beach offered as we often were the only ones on the beach!! It had clear and calm Caribbean waters along with terrific spots for snorkeling and a secret cave for exploring that was like nothing else we had ever experienced! The Secret Beach was a short and very scenic kayak trip just a few minutes from the shores of Tibay Beach.

We had the luck of booking the Zabuco Honeymoon Villa, which was simply amazing! It had a 180 degree view of the Caribbean sea on one side, while the other side had dramatic views of the rainforest in the distance, which was breathtaking. The villa was set atop the cliff right next to the ocean and had unsurpassed views of the sunset each evening. The Villa was chock full of luxurious amenities, but all the while maintaining a very natural and comfortable feel to it. We especially loved showering in the state of the art open-air shower, which had a door that you could slide open to have the Caribbean breeze blow through as you showered--each shower was such an amazing experience--no where else have we been able to shower with the view of the ocean and waves below us, the cliffs of Tibay beach in front of us, and the vistas of the lush tropical rainforest behind us--it is one that everyone needs to experience, for sure!!

The bedroom has a comfortable bathtub that faces west, so we soaked in beautiful sunsets while basking in the warm bubble baths. :) There is an air conditioner in the bedroom, so we slept comfortably as night and woke up refreshed every morning to the unbelievable panoramic view of the sea. Below the main floor of the villa is your very own infinity pool with lounge chairs, tables and even a super luxurious hammock to relax in while taking in the amazing views all around you. I could go on and on about the Zabuco Honeymoon Villa!

But, the other gem about Secret Bay Resort, besides their beaches and villas, are the WONDERFUL staff that work there! We had the luxury of having a cook for the week in our villa and absolutely loved every meal we had! We were really spoiled all week as they cooked breakfast and dinners, per our request! We even had a cooking lesson for lunch one day, and learned to make a yam pie, creole baked chicken, fresh dasheen chips and banana coconut chocolate chip brownies. It was such a fun and neat learning experience!! Delicious!! We also enjoyed the fresh organic fruit juices along with fresh coconuts that were given to us by the awesome staff--thanks again, Rose, Delo, Meagan and Paul!

In terms of excursions, Anna, from the beginning to the end, was simply amazing! She was so dedicated to making our stay at the resort and on the island of Dominica memorable, that she was always checking in on us, to make sure we had everything ready to go the night before an excursion or trip outside of the resort. Thanks to Anna, we were able to go on a waterfall madness day of hikes to some of the most beautiful waterfalls on the island. She also also made reservations and arranged transportation to a couple of dinners at local restaurants on the island. We went to Sunset Bay Restaurant our last night for lobster, and absolutely loved it! This restaurant is a must on the island of Dominica!! We also took a romantic trip down the Indian River, and went scuba diving as a couple for the first time with Cabrits Dive Center--all arranged by the wonderful Anna. :)

The added personal touch we also wanted to mention was the joy of meeting Sandra (she and her husband, Gregor, own Secret Bay) at the airport, who had cold lavender scented hand-towels, crisp cold water bottles and white umbrellas all ready to go right after we got through customs and outside of the little airport. For our departure from the resort, Gregor personally drove us back, and it was neat to learn more about the island and the history of Secret Bay Resort and their future plans. They are both such warm, friendly and welcoming people who are very passionate about making your stay a memorable, once in a lifetime experience.

We have not been able to stop talking about Secret Bay Resort, the people who work there, and the unforgettable adventures we had! This is a true gem that should be experienced at least once in a lifetime!!!!!

Room Tip: Book the Zabuco Villa for the best views!!
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank SMH27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California, United States
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 4, 2011

My wife and I stayed at Secret Bay for our honeymoon and we had an amazing experience. First of all, the location is beautiful with views of the Caribbean Sea and a quiet beach on property. The bungalows are marvelous, with many luxurious touches and plenty of space. Most importantly, the staff is friendly, generous, and accommodating. They go above and beyond anything we've experienced before and are the reason we will return to Secret Bay again.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Jeffrey N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lake Forest, California
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 13, 2011

If city life is cramping your style then its time to head to the pristine island of Dominica, with Secret Bay Resort as your grand destination. Just about an 1 ½ hour flight from Puerto Rico will take you to one of the most “unspoiled natural beauty islands” in the Caribbean. If relaxation and or romance are what you are seeking or you just want to disconnect with the world, then Secret Bay is for you. Everything about the resort will WOW you from the accommodations, views, and friendly service.

There are no other accommodations like it in Dominica from what we have seen and previously experienced. From the architectural aspect of the villas as well as the floral and fauna of this location, everything is 5 star.

We rented both Villas during our stay. Zabuco Villa (The Honeymoon Villa) is spectacular. It is a very private, one bedroom villa with phenomenal ocean views and sunsets. Nicely appointed with every amenity you can imagine.
Zing Zing Villa is just as nice and has a river and a beach view. It does have 2 bedrooms and the same great amenities. Eating your meals on the decks is one of the best parts of both of the villas.

Just below Secret Bay Resort is Secret Beach. It is one of the best secluded beaches of the island. Quite and small but has great warm water and crystal clarity for snorkeling. You can kayak and paddleboard in the beautiful bay. Just under Zabuco Villa is a sea cave that is a great secret in itself to explore.

Part of Secret Bay is the wonderful concierge service they offer. We had impeccable service from the chefs, we enjoyed many local dishes cooked by them, they set up excursions such as hikes to the boiling lake and several other scenic waterfalls. Also if you need a massage or pedicure, they can set that up for you as well. They give you use of snorkel gear, kayaks, bicycles, coolers for your day excursions at no extra charge. For any of your needs, the staff was prompt, available and made your trip there as easy as possible.

We were here for a week and really didn’t feel like you had to leave the resort. The town of Portsmouth is quite and quaint. If you get a chance go to the Farmers Market early Saturday morning. Also if you want to eat a meal in town, try the Iguana Café. Don’t let the building leave you second-guessing yourself on eating here. It is small and you have to call to have the restaurant open to cook your dinner. It is well worth the trip into town to eat here.

If hiking is your passion, then try these guided trips to Tete Chien (the lava flow), Riviere Cyrique (rope climbing!) and Sari Sari falls.... we did these three hikes in one day. Also another hike that should be on your bucket list is to Boiling Lake (Only two boiling lakes in the world). This 16 mile, 6 hour hike is not for the feint of heart but well worth the trip.

You could make Secret Bay as active or relaxing as you like. If you are tired of the cruise ships and the crowds of the other islands and want to be pampered, then Secret Bay should be your future destination! Gregor and Sandra, the owners, have spent 15 years dreaming about this place and it shows with the all the details. If you have a chance to meet them you’ll feel the soul of the resort and that will make your trip even more special. But you better hurry since Secret Bay is no longer going to be “that” secret once word spreads about this fabulous place.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Stacy A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Massachusetts, USA
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 30, 2011

We just had a magical visit to Secret Bay in Dominica. Four of our family shared a beautiful 2-bedroom villa overlooking the water. The villa was built of local woods and equipped with all modern appliances and conveniences. I walked down the hill in the morning with a cup of coffee and admired the view and peace. The staff met every need we had - they were charming and gracious. We went kayaking, visited a small cave with a guide and went snorkeling. The water was crystal clear and warm - and the colorful tropical fish were amazing. We have stayed at many hotels and inns - Secret Bay provided us with a wonderful experience second to none.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mary C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Secret Bay

Property: Secret Bay
Address: | Tibay, Portsmouth 00109-8000, Dominica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Dominica > Saint John Parish > Portsmouth
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Portsmouth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Secret Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tucked away on the unspoilt nature island of Dominica, Secret Bay offers sustainable luxury villas and bungalows and is the perfect place for a honeymoon, anniversary or the secluded holiday of a lifetime. Situated on a cliff-top overlooking the Caribbean Sea, Secret Bay is unique in its diversity: two beaches, the magical Cario River, a spectacular sea cave and two distinct micro-climates. Secret Bay is becoming known as one of the best boutique resorts in the Caribbean - and indeed the world - for honeymoons, anniversaries, small family escapes and adventure vacations. In 2013 Secret Bay was chosen as the number one luxury resort in Caribbean by Islands Magazine; and its Zabuco Honeymoon Villa was voted as having the 3rd sexiest bedroom in the world at the Smiths Awards. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Secret Bay Hotel Portsmouth
Secret Bay Dominica/Portsmouth

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