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St James's or Verandah

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St James's or Verandah

We're trying to decide between these two hotels for beginning of November for two weeks.

Verandah looks very nice, but I see a couple of months ago that they had occupancy issues and I'm a little worried that it might impact service standards etc.?

Also, can anyone advise on what drinks are included at both places i.e. brand spirits? What about cocktails?

What are the restaurants like? Doesn't seem to have a huge amount of choice.

Any comments relating to any of the above would be very useful!!


Central PA
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1. Re: St James's or Verandah

We stayed at SJC and enjoyed it. There are 4 restaurants that rotate on their closed day. Can't remember the top shelf, but it was fine by us. I think getting to the beach at Verandah is by steps due to the location. SJC seems to have more options and activities.

Highland Village...
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2. Re: St James's or Verandah

I stayed at The Verandah when it first opened and it had a bargain rate. Haven't stayed at SJC but seen its beaches from the water. The Verandah was a good value and the food was good but doubt I would stay there again (we only stayed for three days, for that length of time it was fine). There are not many restaurant options and the beaches are bascially man-made which seems a shame in Antigua -- land of 365 beaches! It is also far from everything so you need a car. We really enjoy Elite Island Resorts (Galley Bay is our all-time favorite resort, we basically stayed at the Verandah so that we could fit the last five nights of our trip at GB into our budget, that's where we stay now when we go to Antigua) so St. James Club is on my list for some trip when I need something more affordable than GB or for when I take my kids. I would stay at SJC -- nicer beaches, more restaurant choices, more centrally located.

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3. Re: St James's or Verandah

Not true that both the beaches at Verandah are man made, the main one has always been there, although Verandah have tried to drain the 'pond' behind it because their guests did not think it very pretty! However, it is true that the second beach is manmade, they ripped out the mangroves to make it, got their wrists slapped and a fine, and carried on destroying it.

Cape Elizabeth...
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for Portland, Antigua
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4. Re: St James's or Verandah

I slightly disagree with ajnspeak-----though a little strip of sand has always existed where where Verandah's main beach now is, the resort tore out an area behind it and shipped in brownish sand. The original, tiny beach had some of the whitest and softest sand in Antigua.

Verandah also regularly gets bad reviews for food, which reflects my own experience. Service has had truly mixed reviews----both extremely good and extremely bad. SJC has the same owner but has been around a great deal longer and I think is a safer bet. It's also much closer to other things you may wish to explore (e.g Shirley Heights, English Harbour, etc).

Edited: 09 October 2010, 04:37
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5. Re: St James's or Verandah

I stayed at the Verandah in June and had a fantastic time. They have a buffet resturant for breakfast lunch and dinner. For lunch there is also the option of the beach bar and grill. In the evening there is a a la carte resturant, the beach bar and grill and Nicoles which is worth the $25.00.

The drinks included are branded spirts and the cocktails are included and they have a menu at the bar.

Hope this helps.

Paris, France
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6. Re: St James's or Verandah

Curious, what did you decide? Have stayed at both and would love to know.

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7. Re: St James's or Verandah

I went to Verandah to use the spa. The place felt to me like a poshed up Butlins, massive with people waiting to get on the golf buggy train to take them to their "chalets" and the central pool area! Personally wouldn't want to stay there, but it depends on what you are looking for. Might be more appropriate for a family, but for a couple there would be smaller and nicer places on antigua to stay. Spa was reasonable though.

8. Re: St James's or Verandah

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