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“Heaven on Earth - I turned 50 in style at Secret Bay!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Secret Bay

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Secret Bay
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Portsmouth
Certificate of Excellence
St. George, Barbados
Level Contributor
2 reviews
“Heaven on Earth - I turned 50 in style at Secret Bay!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 29, 2013

Since Secret Bay opened, I knew that was where I wanted to celebrate my 50th birthday. A place to get away from the hectic daily schedule that is my life - a place where I could be waited on hand and foot!

LIAT- the airline I now love, was on time. Pure joy! On landing, we were greeted by our very pleasant driver, Kenny who gave us cold towels and ice cold bottled water to sustain us on our one hour drive from the airport, through the beautiful Nature Isle of the Caribbean to the even more stunning Secret Bay. It's better than Facebook says it is.

All of the staff were amazingly hospitable - we were welcomed warmly on arrival and shown to our rooms- given a tour of our accommodation - the beautiful Mapou bungalow- and our kitchen was stocked already with every request made- coconut water, fresh juices, homemade coconut ice-cream, plantain chips, homemade granola and yoghurt etc etc. All very delicious.

Our first lunch menu- thick delicious plantain chips, salad and the very best shrimp...EVER- really, the very very best shrimp, followed by a chocolate avocado mouse with banana for dessert. We shared this with two lizards and a bird with a red feathered neck. Deslyn , our attendant, and Marvin, the manager, took care of our every need.

The view from the balcony was truly amazing- a lovely space to read, chat and reflect. We had cocktails on the sunset deck, good reflexology on the meditation deck and a wonderful massage in the room. We kayaked across the bay and relaxed on the black sand beach.

We ate, and drank and ate some more. I really appreciated all the attention to detail- the design of the bungalows is amazing and everything in the bungalow- the fixtures, appliances, the decor, provision of good reading material- everything is thoughtful, sophisticated and elegant.

I could not have asked for better service, better food or a more beautiful place to celebrate being on this amazing earth for a half century. Well done, Secret Bay, for providing excellent service in a stunning environment. Two thumbs up!!

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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 Annalee D
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
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 2, 2013

After reading about Secret Bay in a National Geographic "places to visit" book, we were hooked. Finding all these amazing reviews on TripAdvisor made us even more hooked....and they're all rightly deserved! Secret Bay is an incredibly unique and special place, perfect for our honeymoon. It was like Swiss Family Robinson treehouses meets pure luxury.

Staff: Anna, the manager, was so accomodating and sweet. Meg, our attendant, was also so helpful. Every time we'd be trying to choose a meal time or something like that, we'd say "whatever usually do or whatever is easiest", their response was always, "no, it's what YOU want". It was truly the most customized place we ever stayed. Gregor, the owner, even stopped by to say hello one evening. It is clear that they really care about their guests' experience.

Room: We stayed in the Zabuco Honeymoon Villa, and it was SO WORTH IT!!! The views were incredible. We spent so much time in the plunge pool and on one of our many private patios. Bedroom has AC and it was very quiet. Very private, deep soaker tub, luxury, luxury, luxury.

Food: Gemma was an amazing cook, and we had lobster 2 nights and the fresh catch of the day the other nights. I always cooked breakfast for us ourselves, (fridge was stocked when we arrived and re-stocked while we were there), and for lunch and dinner, you'd simply think of what you wanted to eat, (they'd call you around 10am to ask you), and it would appear on your patio that evening. Unbelievable! We'd make our own rum punch from the local fruit juices they'd bring us and rum. The bottles of wine they stocked were surprisingly quite affordable.

Activities: I got a private massage on the patio one day which was soooo good! The usual woman called out sick, but her replacement, (can't remember her name but she was from Nepal), was amazing. I also did a private yoga class with Jenny, and she taught me some new poses. We also did the Indian River tour with Fire which was a fun and easy trip. Finally, we did horseback riding through the jungle on beautiful and healthy horses, (I was worried they'd be sickly, but they were so well cared for).

Go! You won't regret it!

Room Tip: Zabuco Honeymoon Villa is absolutely amazing!
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 countryboundgirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auch
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2013

In June 2013 we have passed our honeymoon in the magic Zabucco villa!

All at this place are really amazing: the nature, the high quality of the rooms, the team that help you to organize your stay in the best way, the food prepared according to your wishes!
If you are looking for somethings special and atypical for your travel, we higly recomend you this hotel.

We would like to really thank all members of the Secret Bay team for their excelent services!

Olga and Jean-François

  • Stayed June 2013, 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
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Olga Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
28 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 26, 2013

Hi,

We're writing this review in the middle of our trip, but our experience so far has been incredible we wanted to write it early. Currently, we are sitting on our deck, which overlooks the ocean.. below us is a spacious dipping pool and a swinging bed/hammock/awesome bed type thing! We are our on our honeymoon (so married less than a week) and have been excited for this trip for months. We were originally going to the Maldives/Bora Bora, but found Secret Bay and its unrivaled rooms and privacy and it was a done deal.

Upon arrival Anna couldn't have been kinder and more welcoming. The food has been excellent, the recommendation of activities (go snorkeling with Don and my husband went scuba diving with Peter) has ben top-notch. What has really separated Secret Bay from any other honeymoon destination, aside from the amazing villas (we've traveled/lived all over the world... my husband has worked with four seasons corporate/hotels in South America) and we've never had the personal touches as we have had here. Everyone here has a smile and the environment they've created is beautiful and authentic.

One example and then I'll finish our review after we leave is that I had a bit of a medical issue. Nothing serious, but enough that I called my doctor in the states concerned. Needless to say, Anna called the local doctor (Dr. Andrew) and within hours the doctor was here with a prescription ordered and was more thorough than most doctors in the US.

Whether it is a babymoon or anniversary trip, we'll be back and we're only on night four.

Happy Honeymooning!

Room Tip: They are all beautiful... the Zabuco II/III rooms are stunning!
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  • Stayed September 2013, 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 Auna J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 19, 2013

Secret Bay is perfect. Every single expectation we had was exceeded by the staff and the accommodations. From the moment we arrived, we were welcomed with the most sincere and thoughtful hospitality. Anna takes guest service to a whole new level - to say that she doted on us is an understatement. The quietest mention of a request or craving, and it was there in moments, beautifully presented. We had the pleasure of meeting Gregor on our stay - what a wonderful host. He takes great pride in making sure his guests enjoy their stay.
When people ask us about our honeymoon, we're often at a loss for words. It was simply the best. The best food, the best staff, and the best location for a memorable and romantic trip.
Both of us are travel junkies and before we left Dominica, we agreed that we MUST come back. To the island, but more specifically, to Secret Bay.

Room Tip: The Zabuco Villa will blow you away!
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2013, 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 JJRivera0513
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lexington, Kentucky
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 19, 2013

I think it speaks volumes that we just returned from our second Secret Bay trip, and it hasn't even been a year since our first! We knew we wanted to plan another trip sometime in 2012/2013 and when we found out we were pregnant, we had to work it in as our babymoon. I didn't have a single reservation about heading back to Secret Bay while I was pregnant, because we had felt so safe and well taken care of the first time. We even alerted the staff while we were booking and Anastasia and Gregor reassured us it would be safe and we would have plenty to do (my doctor gave the OK as well :)).
We are a very active couple and, knowing I wouldn't be able to do many of the excursions was not a problem once we worked with the staff after arriving onsite. Anna and Marvin knew exactly what I should/could do while being pregnant and set us up on some of our favorite excursions yet. This was amazing to me! I was concerned with seeing or doing enough and I was completely taken care of, doing things that were safe, appropriate, and breathtaking. Even if we hadn't taken a single excursion this trip, Secret Bay's amenities and activities would have been enough to keep us relaxed and entertained.

We stayed in Zabuco again because we love the location of that villa, as well as the space and pool. The food service (preparation by local food geniuses in the kitchen) is now included and we ask for all local and all surprises... and are never disappointed. The expertise of the staff when it comes to setting up activities, excursions, or if you need an underwater camera, is the best I have ever experienced. I can honestly say we felt like family on our first visit, but being back a second time, we felt this even more. We were there in July, which is technically rainy season, but we would go back during that month without any concerns. It seemed to rain over night or in the morning which didn't affect our plans one bit and was quite relaxing.

Whether you are looking for a babymoon destination or any other type of trip, I hope our feelings of safety, relaxation, fun and pure enjoyment come across in our reviews for Secret Bay. We are going to build a small family and get back as soon as we can and I know we will be just as satisfied and thrilled as these first two times!

Room Tip: We have stayed in Zabuco both times and will stay here again once we come back. We love the location...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2013, 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 BrettandJenny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Richmond, Virginia
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 15, 2013

Secret Bay is simply amazing! I scoped this resort out for months after my husband decided Dominica would be the best place for us to honeymoon. As soon as I saw that we would have our own bungalow AND personal chef service I was hooked and it wasn't hard to sell my husband on it either! To be honest we were both way more excited for this trip to Secret Bay than we were the actual wedding! Haha. Secret Bay fits in well with the beauty of Dominica. We loved the fact that it is a small resort because we felt almost as if we were on our own deserted island. We appreciated the feeling of privacy that Secret Bay offered. We spent a week in Mapou Bungalow and dreaded having to leave. The deck offered us many evenings to sit and listen to the waves, make friends with the geckos and birds, and just relax. We were provided a cell phone to be able to contact staff any time of the day. Our personal attendants Bianca, Deslyn, and Saralee were such sweethearts! Always smiling and always there to answer any questions we had or get us anything we needed. Anna, the guest services manager, was a life saver. From helping us book our stay at Secret Bay, to scheduling our excursions and activities, and checking on us regularly to make sure we were happy, Anna hands down made our experience even better. Aside from the staff, the food was our next favorite thing. The personal chef service is amazing! Our attendant asked us in the morning what we wanted for lunch and dinner and what time we'd like each meal and the rest was pure bliss. Creole chicken and pumpkin rice, curried goat, BBQ ribs, grilled chicken salad, grilled fish and yam pie, MANGO COBBLER (oooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhh so DELICIOUS), banana brownies....I'm drooling just trying to think of everything we stuffed our faces with.

We also had the opportunity to meet Gregor, the owner. He was extremely friendly and took the time to talk with us and get some feedback. He suggested we go on the Indian River Tour and we were so glad we did!

Everything about Secret Bay was just overwhelmingly amazing. We've never stayed at any hotel or resort where we had absolutely NO complaints, where every staff member was equally attentive and kind, and where the accommodations made us wish we could take everything home with us!

My husband and I are already trying to figure out when we will be able to make it back to Secret Bay. It will hopefully be sometime really really soon!

  • Stayed July 2013, 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 Monique_Kimani
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 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Priceline, MrandMrsSmith, Agoda, Hotels.com and Jetsetter so you can book your Secret Bay reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Secret Bay Hotel Portsmouth
Secret Bay Dominica/Portsmouth

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