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All reviews captain sam crystal cove waterfront restaurant kids club a la carte water sports chelonia restaurant ice cream parlour rum punch great holiday evening entertainment dress code boogie boarding sister hotel jet ski red flag all inclusive resort
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Reviewed 29 November 2007

This Hotel is a large multi restaurant gated venue situated right on the Ocean. You will enter from the electric gates and be welcomed at check in with a seat and a drink! Correct, that is what I said, you will sit down, listen to the exotic birds calling in the mid morning sunshine, and have a drink. The hotel check in operatives will approach you! No waiting in a cue with 8000 other stroppy travellers and No being ushered with a tip expectant moron to your room. And this is where the celebrity treatment starts.. from the minute you walk in the door. Genuine smiles and professional courtesy will fill your heart with warmth and it doesn't stop until you leave. The staff are briefed intensively on a daily basis, and customer care and respect is most definately first on the agenda. The management of this hotel have chosen staff very well, and not one member of staff lets the side down, you become a friend immediately and treated like a king or queen.

Yes I had a crack on one inch of a tile in my bath, and yes the hot tap did come off in my hand. But so what I found it hilarious flooding the place and having it mended before I had even reported it. I fell over laughing, fully brilliant.

You eat breakfast at a choice of two posh buffet restaurants, I chose to eat and look at the Ocean and the Sand, two inches from my right foot! The other restaurant is semi open with giant roman style columns and waterfalls at each end, in the mornings it is full of exotic birds all wishing to join you for a spot of breakfast, the beautiful birds will happily sit on your chair whilst you feast.

The hotel is a crescent which overlooks the Ocean and each room has a large balcony, the rooms are recent, nicely decorated and well above average if not excellent.

You leave the tasteful reception and lush green lobby and head south and within two steps over the pool wooden bridge you are on the hotels beach which has naturally white sand.

I am the most picky person on the planet, and I am accustomed to Bellagio, W hotels and English Boutique resorts, this hotel meets everything I need and more.

Food wise you will be enchanted with Nouvel Cuisine or quality buffets, and unlike your perception the service is as fast as London or Vegas... infact faster than Vegas. You want something , you got it, yesterday. You want to stretch policy, you got it. Don't be maniplutive and watch how they will serve you they are brilliant hoteliers not servants.

The hotel is situated at the foot of the main "strip" where all the bars and clubs are, and this leads me to the next part.

If you are used to clubbing, house music, posh venues, and beautiful people be ready for a shock and get ready for a lot of Reggae.

They do their best in the bars to throw down a variety, one night I danced to Luther! but the "GAP" needs a lot of work. You will in your 7 day stay have 2 Outstanding or Good nights out for dancing and laughing, I recommend the music variety of Sunday nights in the Bar begining with M, the rest of the time forget it. Its not Ibiza, its not Vegas, and its not Miami.

I was infuriated by the "locals" who approach girls even if they are on your arm, its rude, ignorant and asking for serious trouble. This behavoir is simply not acceptable in any country and unless it is culturally addressed, honeymooners will not want to leave their hotels, and if I ever bring my beautiful wife, we are not leaving the hotel, unless I am looking for some "noise" with someone :) ( local saying ) Go in a large group or of couples then you wil have no drama or embarrassment.

If you are a couple be ready for this and try not to get angry. I was furious with the constant "gap locals" offering of drugs or begging for money, and I am ashamed the Aloe Vera salesmen haven't realised we are not interested. However that said. 99 percent of the locals respect a polite no thank you and will smile and be on there way.

Having said all of that the locals of a night time are pleasantly accepting of holiday makers and at best offer a smile. You will mix happily with them, but I couldnt help but feel a tiny bit "politely tolerated" which is to be expected in some places.. after all it is their island. One thing is for certain the female ratio of a nightime is 25% female which is dissapointing compared to other places and the doormen especially at the end of the strip need to go on a smiling course.

Police presence is high and prominent and the police are on your side and very kind. So all in all you are safe as houses. Crime is relatively low.

If you want 1 or 2 nights out, great. If you want hilarious nightlife, book something else.

If you want to be treated like a star, get 7 star treatment in a 4 star budget, have fun with the staff, take in some sun, relax, get drunk, take a brilliant virgin jeep tour ( which will have you on the ground laughing by the way ) Romantic nights with your g/f or b/f and walks along the beach holding hands are a plenty!

In summary any hotel on the island have a lot of work to do to match this one. I am so impressed.

One of the best hotels in the world. Its better than ALL the pictures and pound for pound is the best value for money you will ever experience in the Caribean.

Have a good trip and ignore the moaners they are mostly talking nonsense and can carry on living in their negative bubbles. I have high standards and I say BOOK!

NB - Booked via Lorraine Crowden independant travel advisor and Virgin.

Stayed: November 2007
6  Thank HRPOWER
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 November 2007

The Hotel itself is an ALL inclusive, lovely quite big,with two accomodation wings.,2 swimming pools,a Spa and a kiddies pool.It had 3 restaurants,Beachfront (casual),Chelonia and Asiana(abosolute gem).Many thanks to Chelonia manager who always used to address me by my surname very professional i thought.Rooms are nice,clean and regularly cleaned.No complain.
Staff were excellent could not do enough for you.Food very good with a lot of variety and choice for different palates.BBQ saturday night abosolutely marvelous,esccpecially the steak is a must.(Sorry vegees)
Beach is nice too not too big but adequet.All watersports incl.except motorised which is normal,in All-Inclusive basis.
Captain Sam and his crew are very good at what they do and very vigilate.
Bar staff very good and efficient and these staff are by no means stingy with drinks.Local Beer Banks is good.All cocktails and whiskey are avail.
All in all We had a lovely time at this hotel and we will not hesitate in booking this place again.
Big Thank you to staff for there lovely,friendly service.


  • Stayed: November 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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1  Thank ShantiGohil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 November 2007

We stayed here from 10/20-10/27/07 and enjoyed our vacation. Check in was very easy and began with a cheery bellman greeting us at the entrance and then offering rum punch. Be careful, rum punch is strong on an empty stomach. The food at Asiagos (Italian) and The Waterfront was ordered off a menu, very good, well presented (a photo of the plate could have been in a gourmet magazine) and each course arrived separately for a long relaxing meal. The service and food at Asiagos was the best of the 3 restaurants and quiet since you must be 12 or older to dine there. There is a dress code at Chelonia and Asiagos so be sure to take long pants and shirt with collar for men and skirts or sundresses for women. The dress code is kind of odd - the buffet restaurant Chelonia has a dress code and you must make a reservation, while The Waterfront is order off the menu and has no dress code. The buffet food at Chelonia was OK - my favorite foods there were grilled fish, mixed vegetables with orange squash, vegetable soup and split pea soup. Try the local foods Christophene (vegetable), flying fish, mahi-mahi, plaintain, breadfruit, macaroni & cheese pie, peas & rice, and cherries. Make your supper reservations for the whole week right after you arrive so that you don't end up eating at 9 p.m. The bartenders were friendly and there are bars at each of the 3 restaurants. The only beer that they have is the local beer Banks which my husband enjoyed. They stock red and white wine and they are both dry. I liked the mixed drink "Mt. Gay Surprise" made by Sheena. Try Passoa liquor which is made in Barbados from passion fruit.

The ocean had large waves with the red or yellow flag up while we were there. When you get to the end of the boardwalk at Turtle Beach there is a yellow rope because the middle part of the beach has washed away so you have to get to the beach by walking next to the watersports building. The beaches to the left and right of the boardwalk are nice with fine, clean sand. There is a shaded sandy area between the boardwalk and the watersports building that is nice for watching the ocean without being in the hot sun. Be sure to apply insect repellant to your legs every morning. I got bit and I do not even know when it happened. Several of the guests from England had large red spots on their legs.

The birds at breakfast (Chelonia) are entertinaing and enjoy eating food left on plates when people leave. If the staff would clean up the tables promptly there would not be so many birds. The very pretty yellow-breasted birds are the size of a goldfinch and like to eat jelly from the little jelly jars and drink milk from the pitchers on the tables. You would think that they would use a milk container with a lid. Anyway, I wouldn't use the milk on the tables and keep your silverware off the table because the birds walk on the tables.

There was no clock in the room so you might want to take an alarm clock. There are a lot of nice plants and trees around the property but they have trouble keeping the grass growing so some areas are just brown soil. If you are looking for a quiet room, don't get one over the children's pool which has screaming children. The hot tub is for people age 16 and over but this is not enforced. When we were there it was school holiday in England so we we were one of the few guests from the USA and there were many families with children. I think the resort tends to cater to the English with things like baked beans for breakfast and afternoon tea with scones and small sandwiches.

If you purchase Barbados rum it is easier to buy it directly at the Mt. Gay Rum factory, take it back to your room, wrap it in clothes and pack it in your suitcase. If you have it packed and sent to the airport, you will have to retrieve it after you go through security at the airport that you land at in the USA and then add it to your checked suitcase at the airport before you get on your next flight.

It was rainy season in October and rained 3 evenings while we were there which caused the evening entertainmnet at the gazebo to be canceled. It's too bad that they don't have a covered area for the entertainment and audience so there is something to do each evening.

The Oistins Fish Fry was fun with crafts (mostly jewelry) and full plates of delicious food. We took the city bus for $1.50 Bahamian to get there. Make sure to visit Beersheba which has a gorgeous view of rocks and crashing waves. The city buses are not air-conditioned and drive very fast so be sure to hang on. We always found a helpful person that told us where to get off the bus. The tour of Mt. Gay Rum was good and the best part is that you actually get to taste different types of rum at the end of the tour or you can purchase a mixed drink. The Cave Sheppard department store in Bridgetown is good for souvenirs such as rum cakes.

I was stung by a jellyfish in the ocean at Turtle Beach. It feels like needles are pressing into your skin and we found a long clear string on my arm. According to the internet, the treatment is to place a cloth soaked in white vinegar over the wound for 30 minutes. Unfortunately, the hotel would not give me any vinegar from the kitchen and told me to walk to a clinic down the road. Instead, I rubbed the red areas on my arms with a lime slice from the bar and the sting went away in about 30 minutes. You may want to take a little bottle of vinegar and some hydrocortisone cream in case this happens to you. My only complaint about the resort is that they would not give me some vinegar.

Stayed: October 2007
5  Thank Caribbeanlinder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 November 2007

Have just returned from the lovely island of Barbados and the Turtle Beach Resort.

Our party was a family of 5 with two adults and 3 children aged 2, 8 & 11 and we stayed for 10 nights in a one bedroom ocean view suite on an all inclusive basis.

Hotel condition- Some areas looked a little tired and there was always a couple of guys touching up stuff here and there and I would agree that the hotel is probably pushing it classing itself as four star but overall ok.

Dining- Food was found to be varied and on the whole very good with something that the kids would eat available at every mealtime. If you have to eat at say 7 or 8 exactly every night or your world ends then you need to book your table before everyone else. We just chilled out and varied our dining times.

Pools- There was a problem in the childrens pool re kids getting sore feet but the hotel closed it quickly and it re opened the next day and no more was said. Touching up going on around pool area but not intrusive, beds and shades ok and always something available. Drinks served all day at your sunbed by Tyson, Maradona etc.

Beach- The hotel is on the Atlantic ocean and therefore you get some sizeable waves with strong undercurrents. I was boogie boarding with no probs and my 11 year old joined in but did get a little scared. I would not take anyone younger into the sea there if they are not a good strong swimmer and never let children out there unsupervised. Beach guys superb and when returning towels at end of day a nice cold beer and a chat with them very welcome.

Kids Club- Why people bring their kids on holiday then stick them in there saying "oh William and Henry love it in there" is beyond me . I go on hols to spend time with my children and I am sure they are trying to convince themselves that they are not bad parents. That said from the outside it looked ok and the inmates at the orphanage were fed and entertained.

So I would say that the TBR is a good family plot with enough to keep kids amused (not teens, a bit too quiet) and parents therefore can relax too. I would and probably will return. Do not disturb signs for the rooms would be handy in fact a must. I know the manager reads these reports and shares them with the staff all of who were friendly, smiling joking and on the whole efficient.

  • Stayed: October 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
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7  Thank Trip_Over
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 November 2007

My wife and I have just returned from Turtle Beach after a 10 night stay; 3rd trip to the island and first time here.

Was slightly concerned beforehand having read some of the reviews but generally had a good experience. The positives first.....

Room - Ground floor, very nice, clean, well appointed. Housekeeping was very good. The resort and gardens were always clean and well maintained. There is a well equipped gym.

Food - excellent, best food we've had out of any of our trips to Barbados. Plenty of choice, well presented, nice mix of a la carte and buffet. Asiagos (Italian) was quiet and intimate (no children under 12). Chelonia was the main dining area serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and if your stomach had space, afternoon tea; Waterfront bar as per Chelonia but more relaxed. There were birds flying around at breakfast but not that many, have seen worse bird problems during previous holidays. We just placed our saucer over our tea/coffee and serviette over any water/juice and there was no problem. Hey, it's the tropics and the birds live there as well!! We did have to queue on the odd occasion but nothing too bad. Plenty of named brand drinkks on offer, the house wine was quite palatable.

Staff - extremely friendly and couldn't do enough for you. The sea was rough throughout so didn't try the watersports but Capt Sam and his crew were great bunch. There's a really good beach drinks service as well. Had no problems with the local hawkers, just tell them politely that you're not intersted and that's enough....although they sometimes just ike to have a chat anyway, friendly people these Bajans! There is adequate and visible security in the resort in case of problems (not that we had any).

Spa - my wife used the Spa and said it was very good.

Shuttle - there's a handy free shuttle to Bridgetown running twice daily

Now for some negatives.........well, comments really

Children - one of our weeks straddled half term and it was very busy with children for some of the time. We usually found a quiet spot on the beach but the pools and jacuzzi were a no go for us. There is a kids club open until 9pm but just as we would be sitting down to dinner, listening to the band, the kids would arrive and on some nights, it got a bit too noisy and out of hand. Hey, blame the parents not the kids. The resort could do with some 'adults only' areas, including a pool - the resort is marketed to singles and famillies - there were honeymooning couples there as well. I think the resort generally lacks adequate lounge facilities. There was nowhere quiet to go. It was more peaceful during the second week - if you want peace and tranquility, be careful when you book.

Entertainment - there was always a band on each evening and they were good but that was about the some total of the the entertainment; nothing beyond 10.30pm. I've had better in other resorts. For those party animals, St Lawrence Gap is where the action is at and it's just a few hundred yards down the road.

Dress code -the rules are no jeans/tshirts/shorts and trainers for dinner but this was often not enforced. A bit disappointing, especially when the resort isn't reinforcing it's own standards.

There's no more 'negatives' as far as we were concerned. We got a good deal through Virgin Holidays and had a nice relaxing time. We were nibbled by mosquitos, as was everyone so take pleny of spray - the rooms come with a plug in repellant to keep them out of the rooms.

We would consider going to this resort again but it would depend on the time of year/school holidays. Otherwise, it's back to the Almond beach Club and Spa (no kids).

  • Stayed: October 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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5  Thank Jmpf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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