Grotto Bay Beach Resort

11 Blue Hole Hill | Hamilton Parish CR 04  [SEE MAP]Hamilton Parish  [SEE ADDRESS]
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Guest Reviews

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5

Exceeded All Expectations!

Dec 6th, 2019

Three generations of our family stayed at GBBR during the week of Thanksgiving. There were eleven of us: Two grandparents, two sons and two daughters-in-law, and 5 grandchildren, ages 6 to 19. Our five rooms were in the same building, on the same floor, and had access to each other. The rooms were perfect for us as were the beds, sheets, pillows, and duvets. I scratched my head reading a prior review that said there was nothing for kids to do. Our grandkids sailed, kayaked, paddle boarded, snorkeled, played in the pool and on the beach, fed the fish very morning, swam in the grotto, joined us in the hot tub, were part of "intense" family competitions on the shuffle board court and football on the beach, played tennis, spent time in the playground and with the friendly cats, and on and on. Within easy walking distance are the fascinating trails in the Walsingham Nature Reserve/Blue Hole Park and the marvelous Crystal Caves. The food was wonderful. And the staff could not have been friendlier. They got to know us and our preferences quickly and greeted us happily every day. We took advantage of the all-inclusive plan; it made everything so easy. (Another review complained about not knowing that bus (and ferry) passes were included in the all-inclusive plan. Upon arrival one is given brochures which explain exactly what is on the all-inclusive plan.) Because the 201 rooms are located in a number of separate buildings spread over the beautiful site, unlike a high-rise hotel with a frantic lobby, the atmosphere of GBBR was constantly quiet, calm, relaxed, and informal. All of us loved everything about our GBBR experience. Long story short: We can't wait to return! TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4

So pleased with our visit

Dec 5th, 2019

We stayed with our two teenage daughters over the week of Thanksgiving and had a lovely time. As mentioned before, it is a 5 min taxi ride from the airport. Check in was a breeze and they allowed us to get into our rooms well before the typical check in time which is always so appreciated. They also honored our request for adjoining rooms. The rooms are basic, clean and comfortable. The bath is a bit smal. We did the all-inclusive option and the food was very good. Being gluten/dairy free I was very pleased with my options. They even had two vegan desserts at night. There are two main restaurants, one being casual and one being a little more upscale, but you can order from either menu in either room. The staff is attentive and get to know your preferences. We rented a boat from Blue Hole Water Sports and had a wonderful three hours on Castle harbor. We even got to snorkle at a ship wreck. The bus passes came in handy to get to Hamilton. The number 3 was 25 minutes to town. We also used them to get out to St. David's Lighthouse, Clearwater Beach and Cooper Island's Nature Preserve. Crystal caves, the Swizzle Inn, The Blue Hole and the Railway trail are all walking distance from the hotel, and we liked being able to access things off property without hiring a taxi.This really wasn't the case when we stayed in Southhampton two years ago. I had one of the most wonderful massages in the Natura Spa cave. Not only was it a magical setting, the therapist was very experienced. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3

Outstanding food, convenient location, lots of room to improve

Dec 4th, 2019

Conveniently located resort (5-minute taxi ride to/from the airport for $10 each way). This was a friend's getaway - for myself & a friend to relax, unwind & get some sun / escape from a colder climate. We should've researched more as the weather was very chilly - feeling significantly cooler than the 65-70-ish degrees. (w/ high winds & off/on rain each of our 6 days). Thankfully we brought our 'puffer'/packable jackets as we wore them non-stop except for 1 day. However, we made the most of it & own in full the responsibility for lack of research on that end... :) Check-in was easy - even being the day after Thanksgiving, though the instructions to walk to our room (several buildings away) were rather vague, so we trekked - luggage in tow - and there are no elevators, so we carried the luggage down the flight of stairs to the far end of the building to our assigned room. (good exercise, anyway!) Our room had an oceanview, which was lovely to wake to...The room was modest, clean - nothing to write home about...which was a bit surprising for us considering the cost of the all-inclusive package...but we did appreciate the mini fridge & coffee maker. We loved the spa time in the cave - though they messed up my friend's reservation (which was to be 2 services for each of us on 'spa day') - leaving her sitting waiting for me for an additional 80 minutes with nothing to do...very disappointing. They did manage to fit her in for her 'missed' appointment a couple days later - promised a discount for the inconvenience - but never delivered on that. The weather was chilly & having not received any instructions or directions about the presence of - or direction to the gym, the hot tub or anything beyond the (obvious) pool - we wandered & found the hot tub. We spent time there, then braved the cave to swim. (brrrrr - but exhilerating - and something you really should try - beautiful experience in creature-free, clean & clear water!) We then went back to the hot tub, then braved the ocean for 5/10 minutes (also chilly - but again - worth it) - then back to the hot tub... ;) We agreed we wouldn't have brought our children there - as there's simply nothing to do - at least in off-season. There's a small shop on-site, and the all-inclusive was worth it overall, as we found the dining quite expensive (but delightful for 5-6 days - a bit repetitive for longer stays, I'd think... The dining / wait staff was fabulous - remembering what we liked to drink (still/bottled water for one, iced tap water for the other, etc.) We found the chefs' pairings to be very well done - specifically the mahi mahi, the melt-in-your-mouth pork (& also the beef!). The food was our favorite part of this location/stay, for sure. Room to improve - 1. The instructions to find our room were vague (& didn't include a lift for us & our luggage) - a bit shocking to us...as it was a bit of a hike - uphill - in crazy winds (35-45mph) 2. We were never given direction on how/why/where the meals would be served (which dining area) & whether reservations were recommended or required (or not needed), leaving us feeling a bit foolish - which was simply due to being uneducated...We also weren't given direction on expected attire at each...again - communication would've gone a long way. 3. No instructions or even info. provided about beach access, gym access/hours, or hot tub location. We were told we could eat/drink by the pool - only to discover it closed for the season. 4. "Concierge" was busy on the phone or doing desk work of some sort each time we stopped to ask for help - and when the spa messed up my friend's appointment - she even argued w/ my friend - telling her it's surely HER (my friend's) booking mistake. (Never mind it was two treatments for each of us - at the same time - same day - and the reservation & treatments were repeated multiple times & confirmed as the same). The mistake was not ours - and the promised discount wasn't ever received when she did re-book. 5. No one told us at any point that bus & ferry passes were included in the all-inclusive package - so thankfully we figured that out on day 1! Huge bonus! Bus picks up directly in front of the hotel entrance (at the street/bus stop) for both Hamilton & St. George's. 6. Outdoor fire - the outdoor fire area was lovely - but we had to ask (two separate occasions) if it could please be lit as it was nice enough to sit outside - but too chilly w/o the fire. They willingly accommodated - but we found that strange as others were sitting around - within sight of the bellman who could've lit it at any time (?) 7. Fire area furniture. The cushions were stained & filthy...which was off-putting as they could either be kept clean or replaced w/ furniture that doesn't appear filthy (ie resin, wicker, wood or some other type that could be cleaned regularly) 8. One pm we called the front desk to inquire about the availability of food after 9 pm, and were told there's no room service, and in fact no food available as the kitchen was closed. The very last pm at the resort - saw guests with a 'late-night' menu - as they'd been told that the late-night menu is available until midnight...(conflicting info.- but discovered to be true...) We had also inquired about whether there were snack machines (again after 9 pm call to front desk...). We were told absolutely - in each building - so again - went walking up & down 3 floors of 3 different buildings only to confirm that indeed there are NOT snack machines - but rather ice machines & soda/drink machines only. All in all, we're glad we took the trip. However, we've decided this is a resort we wouldn't likely book again for a future stay. A little genuine care & attention of guests & additional customer care on the front end could have made this a phenomenal experience, which was a tad disappointing. (For the amount of guests staying at the same time as we were - it would have been quite easily achieved to have the staff know the guest names, and make themselves available to make it an amazing stay) TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3

A nice vacation, but significant room for improvement

Dec 2nd, 2019

We stayed here as a couple for 5 nights over Thanksgiving. We came with the goal of a relaxing, easy trip and came specifically for the all-inclusive option. Check in and our room was excellent. We stayed in a Deluxe Oceanfront room which had a great balcony overlooking the ocean. I appreciated the mini fridge and coffee maker in the room, as well as the rum cake there for my husbands birthday. The room was extremely noisy. We could hear every word of conversations held at normal volume next door, as well as vehicles driving to the dock early in the morning, and unbelievably noisy kites of all things. Amazingly, having the airport directly across the water was no problem at all. Service was mixed. The front desk and guest services were extremely lacking, not following through with basic requests (they forgot to call us a taxi, let us know if an excursion had enough people to go, etc). The dining staff however was wonderful. Managers checked in during your meal to see how you were, and staff remembered you/your room number and asked about your day. Food was good, but limited. Having two restaurants available and only one lunch menu led to repeating meals numerous times over. The all inclusive supplement was worth it on the whole, but did make it slightly painful when we got lunch once off property to allow for some variety. When they did offer something different (i.e. Sunday brunch), it was not included and required an extra $50 per person. Drinks were good and the included selection was sufficient, but of two bars one was often closed. The cave on site was beautiful and definitely worth a slightly cold swim. The spa was a must-do. If you're not staying at the resort you should still make a trip to the spa. The cave made for an incredible background and the massage was one of the best I've had. It was pricey, but 100% worth it. The other amenities were nice, but as it was raining much of the time we didnt get to use all of them. There was very minimal entertainment, so if you're looking for something to do after dinner, look someplace else. Overall it was what we were looking for on this trip, but we will likely not be returning. TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 5

MORE THAN SATISFIED

Nov 28th, 2019

Very nice hotel with almost everything one could want. We were almost All Inclusive and even had a seven day bus pass - nice extra was added. This was very useful as the bus stops were just outside the hotel and gave us access to the whole island. Nice room 723 with views across the water and toward the Airport but no noise from here. Tea and coffee in the room were appreciated and good cleaning every day. Food was very good and although the same menu each night there was plenty of variety, although as they cater for the US market which means portions were usually too big for us from the UK. Much appreciated the discussions with Peter Frith (night manager and local historian) )who entertained us with details and history of the island, thank you, much appreciated. We did find reception could have been a little more friendly, even when not busy. Everyone else could not do enough for us, very helpful. Yes, no hesitation of a return visit TRIPADVISOR.COM USER 

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