This was my third time at this resort since 2007. I really did not plan on ever going back to this resort. My decision to go was based on the excellent deal I got through Sunquest $580 per person for a week taxes in!
We flew out of Toronto with Thomas Cook/Air Jazz. Nice plane, 757, loads of leg room very impressed. Not like the airbuses we usually fly on. Flight uneventful. Went through immigration and customs quickly since we were the only flight in at this time of the evening. Check in was quick and painless. Remember to get your safe key when you check in ($15/week) otherwise you will have to go back once you get to your room. Found our room on our own since we were familiar with the layout of the resort from previous visits.
They are in the process of renovating the rooms at this hotel. The Beach side was still closed and being renovated while we were there. The left side of the Reef section rooms are all renovated and open. The right side is now is one third closed now and they were starting renovations the last week. We stayed on the right side in an un-renovated room which I did expect because of the super saver price we paid. I have stayed on this side before and the room was pretty bad but I have to say our room was pretty good compared to when I was here last. The beds on the other hand are really bad! Hard as rocks, my back killed every day. There are two water bottles in the room when you arrive and you have to fill them up yourself they are not replaced. You can do this in the restaurants or at the bottom of stairs leading up to the rooms. Rooms cleaned daily with new towels. The renovated rooms have new pillow top matresses and furniture, flat screen TVetc. Someone we met there said their room was so bad (mold etc) he offered the front desk $50 and got a renovated room on his second day there. I wish I new that I would have tried it just for the new beds.
Restaurants and Bars: There is only one Buffet restaurant open right now near the reception area. The food was better then before with more selection and quality. I do believe they are trying to improve. Yes there are a lot of repetative things but there are always other things to try. I was sick a lot during this week and actually enjoyed the soups offered. I had never tried them before and was glad I did. The house wine is good also. The specialty restaurants are all in one. They have Seafood every night, Mexican Mon, Wed and Fri and Italian on the other nights. Tried Mexican and Italian both good. Do not eat seafood so did not try the other but everyone said it was good. FYI if you get Lobster it’s extra $$.
There were two bars open not sure what time they close but they open really early! Drinks are typical all inclusive fruity drinks. They do taste different depending on who makes them.
Beach/Pools/Grounds: All the pools are open and cleaned every morning. The jacuzzi’s (bubble tubs as we like to call them) were closed most of the trip mostly at the beginning of the week due to surf conditions (waves so big and crashing up against the coral very cool to watch!)They had to close them to clean them also. They were open periodically near the end of the week. Both beaches were closed and red flagged for the first few days due to weather and surf conditions also. Finally on day 4 the Reef beach opened. The surf was wavy and fun the sun was hot!!! The surf can be rough at times and probably not safe for small kids or older people. If you can get passed the breaking point you can just bob in the water.
Grounds are nice too with lots of palms and trees.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel: There were always activities at the main reef pool throughout the day. There are shows every night also. We did watch most of one once but it’s so late I could barely stay up. The shows do not start until 9:45.
We did no excursions this time due to my illness but have in the past. Jeep Safari, Paradise Island and Jungle Tour??? All good.
Other Comments: We had on orange bands this time and found out what the different colours meant. Purple are firt timers, orange have been before and silver is VIP. One of the waiters told us that if you come there 4-5 times you get a silver band but I also believe that they are time share owners with silver bands. They do have some Royal timeshares there but I have never been approached.
All in all it was a way better trip then what I have expected. Had I had a better bed and not feeling so sick the week would have been perfect.
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