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All reviewsgrocery storepool locatedminute walk to the beachnice beachbeach towelsfull kitchenbeach barmaster bedroomfishrented a carlounge chairslarge balconycrystal clear waterplay golfcruise shipexplore the islandgreat snorkeling
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Reviewed 11 April 2012

OK, So this was our 6th trip to our favorite island of Curacao. We have stayed at the Hilton and Habitat before but decided to try out Blue Bay because of the house reef - we go to dive. We booked a villa. So I'll start there -
It is a little bit difficult to figure out the reservations/accommodations situation so here is a brief description:
The Hill - condo style accommodations with a distant view of either the water or the land. Probably about a 7 minute, down hill walk to the beach - not really a big deal.
Village - all villas - 3 bedroom, 2.5 baths, living room, awesome kitchen, amazing terrace - depending on which villa you are staying in, between 1-7 minute walk to the beach. We had all our dive equipment so we made it a point to stay in one of the closer villas (1-8). There is a private pool for the villas and for the hill
Ocean Front - speaks for itself, right behind the dive shop
Garden - beautiful, althought remote villa style accommodations that are smack dab in the middle of the golf course - noone would confirm, but I am assuming they come with a golf cart.

I wouldn't call Blue Bay a hotel - I would really call it a vacation rental. There is a difference here it is:
1- Most things are self service - if you are lucky, they will transport you and all your luggage in a golf cart to your place. Otherwise it's all you.
2-There is nothing like room service, etc... for food that you would find in a hotel
3-Blue Bay itself has no type of sundries or resort store - not a post card or even tooth paste. There is a beach store at the beach but all they sell is beach ware, sunglasses, etc... I know this because we forgot our tooth paste and noone, not the reception, housekeeping, beach store, noone had any - their recommendation? Take a 25 dollar taxi to the supermarket. Needless to say, we just had someone pick some up for us.
4-Customer Service - we are used to island time, and we love the service we usually get on the island. Most of that service is completely absent at blue bay - the reception, except for one person, was stuck up and impossible to deal with.
5- Telephones most of the telephones don't work, have bad reception, etc...this goes for the internet. We had no wifi, but were able to get a decent connection through a cable connection.
6-Grocery package for 50 dollars they bring you a starter pack of some basics, which is great, except when they forget to get some of what is on the list that is supposed to be delivered.
7-Shuttle or lack there of - everywhere in Curacao that we have stayed before has had a shuttle into Willemstad- with it's proximity to the city, you would think Blue Bay would have the same
8-Restaurant staff - Blue bay bills the Azurro restaurant as an amazing place. I beg to differ. Again, island time we are used to, disorganization is not a big deal but the rudeness with which we were treated when trying to eat there was so ridiculous that I will never go back to that restaurant.
On the first day we were there, we had gone for a swim in the ocean and had dried off to get some lunch. Upon entering the restaurant, we were pointed at and rudely (and in extremely broken english) we were told that we were not appropriately dressed to eat lunch there and asked to leave. Now, I'm not sure why that was because the entire stay (10 days) we says children running around naked and people in bathing suits eating there. So, they lost our business. The first evening we decided to have dinner there since we were so tired. Upon entering the restaurant (which by the way was 80% empty) We were rudely asked if we had a reservation. We politely apologized, said no, mentioned we were staying in the villas and had just arrived that evening and asked if we could eat dinner there. This prompted a shouting match between one of the hostesses and a waitress in dutch - I made out most of it which is that they didn't want to serve people without a reservation because it required more work, they didn't want to seat us because we spoke english and who knows what else. We were eventually seated, ordered some food and drinks - ordered a dewars on the rocks, which the waitress was unable to comprehend until we wrote it down for her etc... It just sucked. There was no other way to put it. Food was actually pretty decent but the service was worse than horrible.
Now to the good: If you take those above factors into account, which we learned quickly, you can have an amazing trip, which we did. Check in and ask them to contact the boric car rental company. The bring the rental right to you. For 47 dollars a day, fully insured with 2 drivers we rented a car for most of our stay for less than a round trip taxi fair.
We took a drive to centrum, bought breakfast (avoid the 15 dollar per person charge at the restaurant) and lunch items along with water and snacks and by spending about 150 bucks for 9 days had food for 80% of the time. A few evenings we didn't even go out for dinner, just made some food ourselves. The kitchen is more than equipped with everything we needed including a dishwasher. Little secret - housekeeping did the dishes for us - that was a plus. Centrum is easy to navigate. You can pay in guilders or dollars, or just use a credit card. Just be careful when paying in dollars, they literally figure out the price with a calculator - on first pass our cashier made a dividing mistake...just pay attention. We didn't find food there to be out of this world expensive - considering almost everything is imported from somewhere else there were some great finds like yucca chips and great fresh bakery products.

Driving isn't really that hard - basically it's every man or woman for themselves - horns are used to say hi to people, not to alert anyone of danger or impending turns. Turn signals aren't really used, and basically people pass where ever they want and drive as fast as they want but they are friendly - as are the gas station attendants. Signs are pretty easy and once you drive around the island once with a map the rest is pretty simple - we had no issues.

The Beach - is awesome. Plenty of lounge chairs and space to find some relaxing time under the umbrellas or palm trees. The water entry is a little rocky, but the water is pretty calm and clear so just watch where you are going. It truly is paradise. Beach towels come with your stay - you get 2 tokens which you swap for towels. We swapped towels every day without a problem.
The Dive Shop - also awesome. They don't do many boat dives because the boat is mostly used for snorkel trips from cruise ships. But, the staff - particularly Juanito and Clarck are exceptionally awesome, friendly, and fun to dive with. It was a first for us - we decided to stick to the house reef and not go shore or boat diving else where. But, the reef was amazing and had endless areas to discover. To the east was the garden and towards the west was a wall - I would never get tired of that house reef - all types of critters like arrow crabs, many shrimp, moray eels, secretary blennies, crabs, flounders, etc... a large turtle and resident seahorse. There was great vis most of the time we were there and almost never a current to speak of. Water was a steady and constant 81 degrees. With a little bit of a surface swim, you greatly expand the diving area - which made for a great workout and a lot of fun. Easy to navigate - shallow and deep diving - something for everyone. We even got to see some official lionfish hunting, which was pretty cool. We did 2 dives a day - kept it lazy, but had a great time.

Villa - was nice - AC in every bedroom with great ceiling fan circulation. Furniture in the main room could use a good upholstery cleaning or perhaps replacing but that's about it. 2 TV's in the villa, a beautiful terrace with nice outdoor furniture. The doors to the terrace could use some curtains because they are all glass. And, the reptiles like to try to get inside if you aren't careful - but they are harmless. Bathrooms, showers, etc...everything was fine. Amenities were bare - shampoo but no conditioner, lotion but no body wash, towels, but no wash cloths but other than that all was good. Plenty of closet space and the beds were decent.

Would we stay there again now that we know how things work? Absolutely - just rent a car right away. We went out to dinner a few times at temple DoeLoe for some great Rijstafel, Rib Factory for sports bar fare ( they really do have great ribs), Rodeo Steakhouse, and Iguana Cafe. I was sad that our favorite restaurant - Rijstafel Indonesia has closed..
We look forward to our next trip!

Room Tip: Rent a car - they are cheap and worth while
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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13  Thank muzicgirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2012

I was booked as a package on Expedia, the room i received as an apartment was enormous, and over spacious. However i was not informed, due to construction no telephones were working. I did not have my unlocked phone with me, and this casued a huge problem for me to receive calls from people and vice versa. After speaking with the gm, and the manager, i was upgraded, to a villa with a working phone, with no additional charge. the villa was ridiculously cozy and like nothing i have seen in the Caribbean, was a true home a away from home, will 100% be back!

Room Tip: get the villa for 4 or more
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled solo
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2  Thank shine2345
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 April 2012

My husband and I just returned from staying at the Blue Bay. We loved it and are trying to get my sister and her husband to come back with us. We stayed in a 1 bedroom 1.5 bath and enjoyed having the full kitchen. Lighting was a little dark in the room, but it was sufficient. We were a little upset that we couldn't use the washer and dryer in the room and the laundromat was a bit too expensive. My husband didn't like that the beach was so far away, but we had a car so it was manageable. We did like the beach and never had a problem finding a lounge chair or shade. The restaurant was a bit expensive and the service was terrible. We sat for 20 minutes without even getting a menu and the service went downhill from there. We only ate dinner there once. Overall, we liked the location of the resort and the resort itself was great. We'll defiantly stay there again.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank holyoakj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2012

As most of Caribbean destinations what are designed for US travellers, who makes only short trips and are ready to pay almost anything, this place is little bit expensive.

(land) Area is "huge" because it's basically full length golf course where they have put houses where ever there was space. This makes some of the trips between amenities quite long. F.ex. if your room (like I have) is located at "Hill side" and you want to go to beach or restaurant, you start your trip to first walk 100 m uphill and then 500m downhill at other side. (of course coming back from restaurant it's 500m uphill and then 100m down).
Distance from gate to reception is about 3 km and nearest supermarket is about 1 km. from the gate (so, it's about 4 km. from Hill and 5 km. if you are at "Beach Front")

So, without car, you are basically tied to your room and/or eat at over priced restaurant... Of course you can always call taxi, but who pays US$ 50 for that).

What comes to money, every price is presented at US$ first and after that (if you don't have dollars) Nafl (local currency) and even they says that Euro (€) is fine, only thing what you can pay with it is your room bill at checkout. Restaurant don't accept euros.
What comes to Credit Cards, your Debit card probably works at ATM's but local POI machines don't accept it, MasterCard seems to work best here.

Oh, yes, there is "Bed Bugs" here.. (not good!!)

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank jjussi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 March 2012

We have just come back from our trip to Curacao with our two little kids (4-years old and 17-months-old). We stayed at the Blue Bay Hotel. The villa was very beautiful and spacious, but we had no view. The garden was nice and the veranda large, but the house was very dark at evening because the lamps are very low. There were many mosquitos. The villa was quite far away from the beach for a beach hotel, 15 minutes on foot, uphill on the way back, which is not easy with two little kids. So we were very happy to had rented a car! The beach is very nice, wide and with palms. According to us it is the best beach with hotel directly on it, even though the best beaches in absolute terms are further north (Grote Knip and Cas Abou), but there you don't find beach hotels, though! The personnel of the hotel was quite helpful and kind, even though not very warm. Our kid enjoyed the swimming pool a lot! We would go back to this hotel, but a bit closer to the beach, hopefully!

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank pap_01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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