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“Absolute heaven on earth” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Cocobay Resort

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Cocobay Resort
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Bolans
Certificate of Excellence
England
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Absolute heaven on earth”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2008

The first thing I would like to say is that everyone is entitled their opinion about this resort, however, I must stress that anyone who has done even the slightest bit of research before booking should not have anything negative to say as there are NO suprises.

I have included pictures with this review to show you exactly what the accomadation looks like so you can make your own minds up.

Having booked to stay at cocobay for 10 days on our honeymoon (through virgin holidays) I was very excited by the photos of the hotel and reviews I had read on this website. However as time went on, reviews on this website became worse and worse and I actually looked into changing our hotel but could not do so without huge expense.
However if you have booked this hotel please, please do not be put off by negative people. If you have done your homework before booking this will be exactly what you are looking for. This hotel is amazing.

Accomadation: We has booked a sea view not a sea front cottage and so did not have a plunge pool. We knew this before we went. The only point I will make with regard to plunge pools is that ALOT of people had payed/were expecting to have a plunge pool and didn't for all or the majority of their stay. HOWEVER from talking to people this seemed to be the fault of the travel agents and not the hotel. I would recommend booking with a larger company as we did because you know it will be right.
Our cottage as you can see was exactly as the hotel describes and shows on its website. Yes it was basic but exactly as described, no surprises. We had a fridge to keep drinks cold and a fabulous balcony with the best views on the island. A huge comfy bed with a mosquito net (no holes). The only thing I would say is that perhaps te bathroom could do with a face lift, but to be fair for what they charge I think it pretty good.

Food: I know there has been big debate about this. Personally I think the food is amazing for the money. Breakfast and lunch you just eat as much as you like. The food was fresh and there was a brilliant variety. A word of warning though I would go earlier to breakfast as although there is lots of food left later, not so much variety. Afternoon tea - didn't think much of it but to be honest I was never hungry anyway having stuffed myself at breakfast and lunch! Dinner- you will have to eat late if you get to breakfast late as you need to book for dinner and the earlier slots will be gone. Yes dinner is very small food on very big plates but to be honest it is very well done. You do get four courses and although small are stunning and delicious. My husband eats for England at 6ft 6" but even he never went hungry during our stay.

Entertainment is very limited but this resort isn't about being loud, its about chilling out. You spend quality time with your partner/family or make friends. There are a good variety of ages, we made friends with several young couples also on their honeymoons and had endless fun at the bar!

Drinks are free flowing including lots of delicious (although very strong!) cocktails, local beer really is fine as are local spirits. In the restraunt we never emptied a glass before it was re-filled in the bar area you do have to go up and get another drink but to be honest I think its because they don't want to be presumptious and give you the same drink. (Many guests were working their way through the cocktail list!)

A note about the wellness cottage. YOU HAVE TO GO! I think alot of people didn't know about it. A list of treatments is available from reception and the views whie having a massage are amazing. Karen who is the beauty therapist is fabulous best pedicure ever!

A note on staff. There are obviously staffing issues at the hotel. However there were only about two members of staff who worked there who were not wonderful everyone else really is fab - little rays of sunshine! O'neal the manager greeted us personally with rum punch and cold towels. From day one him and Monique know everyones name. You really do feel welcome.

Due to the unfortunate event at nearby cocos during our stay we did decide to cut our time at cocobay short and move to somewhere more secure as we did not feel safe in the cottages, however, this was te ONLY reason we left. I felt so guilty I explained it to O'neal himself who gave us a hug!

Overall I feel this hotel is brilliant value for money and a very chilled out resort. A must if you visit Antigua.

Final point - we heard lots of people whinging about stuff and it was obvious they had done no research that is where negative reviews come from, people who can't be bothered to do a bit of research.

Stayed July 2008
Helpful?
8 Thank Sarah J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,208 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (656)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
York UK
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 August 2008

i do hope that this hotel is not suffering on the back of the awful events at its sister resort recently. This really was the best holiday that I have had and I cannot recommend this resort highly enough.
Prior to going I had read several reviews on this site which were negative about food, rooms or service. My girlfriend and I stayed for two weeks and we found everything to be fantastic. Service was excellent and the standard of food and drink were much better than you would expect from an all inclusive resort. Shear restaurant was excellent and is worth a visit as a special treat (actually not all that expensive)
We found the service excellent and the rooms amazing. we had no big problems with bugs in rooms (one cockroach found) but we did get bitten a bit by sandflies on some days on the beach.
My only minor complaint was that on some days the room did get a bit hot and humid (but mostly ok) and if I visited again I would pay extra to have one of the few rooms with aircon.
Overall, brilliant and highly recommended.

  • Liked — amazing views and value for money
  • Disliked — would have been better with aircon
  • Stayed May 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mooYorkUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
new york
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 August 2008

This hotel is a great spot to relax and spend a few vacation days in the carribeans. It's not a typical luxury hotel with a lot of activities, but a cute, rustic and friendly resort with excellent food (again simple and homemade) and a free bar. Overall, I had a very good time at this hotel. I would recomment this hotel for couples, but not for families with young kids.

  • Stayed December 2007
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
Helpful?
3 Thank mjs2121
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stirling
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 July 2008

If , like me, you look at the reviews on trip advisor to help make your mind up or give you some peace of mind on a choice already made, let me reaasure you on Cocobay. What you see is what you get with this hotel. If you are looking for a rustic, chilled out, quiet and relaxed experience in the Carribean, then this is a good choice for you.

Location: The location is fabulous - in a great part of the island with beautiful sandy beaches, stunning blue seas and panoramic views. The resort in itself is picture postcard pretty with the little plantation cottages cutting a fine figure on the bluff.

Rooms: The rooms are basic but very comfortable. The bed is nice and big which is bonus and the mosquito nets are invaluable. The balcony is a good place to laze of an afternoon and the hammocks are extremely comfortable. The bathroom has doors which open onto the balcony and you can have an open air shower if you so please, which is lovely! We found that the water pressure was just fine in the shower.

Food and Drink: This seems to be where a lot of the negative reviews on this web site come from and let me reassure you on this right away. The food is absolutely fine, much better than average, and of excellent quality for an all inclusive. My husband and I had never been on an all inclusive holiday before and after the reviews we were expecting a fairly bog standard buffet type service but we were pleasantly surprised. The service was buffet at breakfast although fresh eggs were prepared any way you wanted them by the ladies on the stove in the buffet area. There was plenty of choice and tea and coffee served to your table. Lunch was another buffet affair with at least 3 main dishes available, soup, salad and dessert if you wanted it. Afternoon tea with cake and sandwiches was available from 4pm although we didn't really take advantage of this so I can't comment too much. Dinner was a la carte 5 nights and buffet for 2 nights. Several choices were availble on the menu and they were all prepared to a high standard with a good range of produce. Admittedly, your plate was not piled sky high with food, but my husband and I both agreed that the portions were perfect, as you had at least 4 courses so there was more than enough food to fill you up. To be blunt, how people can write that they go hungry in this resort is unfair criticism. How much do people want to eat?!

The drinks were all good. The local beer (Wadadli) was lovely and the range of cocktails on offer was great. The drinks are only served in plastic cups if you are taking them away from the bar area over to the pool or down to the beach. If you are staying around the bar, they serve them in normal glasses. The beers are not served in pint glasses but rather half pint sized glasses so all you do is finish the one you have and then ask for another one when you're ready. It's absolutely not a problem!

Entertainement: Apart from a couple of musicians and a steel band while we were there, the entertainement was rather thin on the ground but we weren't disappointed by that. The resort is meant to be calm and tranquil and we didn't go there to party til all hours every night so we were more than happy. I can understand why some people may find it a bit too quiet for them, but it really all depends on what you're looking for.

Mosquitoes: There are plenty of them around and we saw some nasty looking bites on people. I am usually the first person bitten and tend to be allergic to bites, however we treated our mosquito net with some permethrin spray, I used 100% DEET mosquito repellent in the evenings and we were both absolutely fine. I didn't get any bites. Just take a bit of care and it's fine.

Trips: We went to St Johns which was a nice half day outing, on the Landrover and Kayaking trip (not bad although perhaps a bit expensive) and up to Shirley Heights for the BBQ (good fun, nice BBQ and great music.)

To sum up, if you're looking for all singing all dancing, shiny bathrooms, wifi access and fluffy bathrobes, this isn't the place for you. This resort is rustic, good value for money and a resful place to go for a relaxed Carribbean break. When we left we had an "extras" bill of 7$US so it is true to its all inclusive name and holds no nasty surprises in store at the end of your stay.

  • Liked — Location
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
14 Thank Clydeview
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 July 2008

My wife and I recently had our wedding at Cocobay Resort and had a fantastic experience. The front desk, wedding planner and room service staff members truly understand customer service! Upon our arrival, the resort manager greeted us personally, and for the next 9 days, knew our names--and those of our family members as well as our relationship (mother/aunt/brother...). The front desk attendants and wedding planner did the same and made us feel incredibly welcome and comfortable.

One of our family members had difficulty with airlines; the resort manager took us into his private office and made at least 100 calls on their behalf trying to locate them and to arrange flights. He truly went beyond what was required and certainly what was expected.

This resort positions itself as one where relaxation is paramount. Take them seriously! There are no phones, tv's, internet or means of connecting with the outside world from your room. If you need something from your room, you have to walk to the front desk and inform them. If you want a drink from the bar, you will have to walk to the bar.

Our one disappointment (and it was minor) was that the restaurant service staff was somewhat less-than-attentive. The maitre d' was wonderful and very cheerful; however, if you're expecting 5-star service (ie, water glass never going empty, plates immediately cleared...) you won't get it. If you are high-maintenance and need coddling, you will find this annoying. After a few days of "slowing down," we didn't mind though!

In all, we thoroughly enjoyed our wedding/honeymoon and would recommend this resort to all our friends. Just keep in mind that you aren't going to the Ritz Carlton and you'll be fine!

  • Liked — Away from the tourist hot spots, very quiet, removed and relaxing. Easy to forget "the world" and all its demands.
  • Disliked — The rooms were perhaps a bit rustic. No chairs or dressers.
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Carefree-Vacation
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newark, Notts
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 July 2008

After reading quite a few not so good reviews before we went, my husband and I were not looking forward to going to Cocobay resort. What can I say - it was lovely. If you want a relaxing, get away from it all holiday then this is the place to be. An ideal honeymoon resort.

What can you not like about Cocobay? Individual private wooden accommodation with views to die for. Wake up in the morning and take in the Carribean sea.

We had no reason to complain about the staff being too laid back - what is there to rush for, you are not going anywhere. Take a leaf out of their book and chill out.

We would recommend the little bar between Cocobay and Jolly Harbour for a nice chilled bottle of wine and a lobster meal - very reasonably priced.

Take a walk along the beach behind Denis's bar - very romantic!

The only down side are the mosquitoes and sand flies but these are beyond your control. Take plenty of repelant and cream and you will be fine. A small price to pay!

All in all, a beautiful place. Take a book, go snorkelling or stay at the bar! Whatever you do, relax, chill out and enjoy. Thoroughly recommended.

  • Liked — Staff and cleanliness
  • Disliked — Insect bites
  • Stayed June 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
8 Thank s_jstuart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
West Yorkshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 July 2008

We arrived at cocobay june 27th after the comments i had previously read we were very dubious, however we enjoyed cocobay immensley, the staff were brilliant very pleasant and helpful especially Phyllis and Monique Kerry in the reataurant was also very attentive The rooms were rustic but very clean and we didn,t encounter any creepy crawlies at all. The food was very good and varied (whoever said portions were small must be very greedy) Breakfast and lunch were selfservice so you can eat as much as you like I wasn,t to keen on the wine, but there was plenty of other drinks to compensate so this wasn,t a problem Entertainment was minimal on an evening but relaxing by the infinity pool was great total chill time The bar staff were a little slow and often wandered off, and yes bigger size glasses would have eased the situation There were numerous weddings whilst we were there and they were amazing Monique did a superb job with everyone Overall a brilliant stay will be back asap

  • Liked — views and cleanliness
  • Disliked — Rain came through door in bad weather
  • Stayed June 2008, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank stingray24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cocobay Resort

Property: Cocobay Resort
Address: Valley Church, Bolans, Saint Mary's 431, Antigua
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint Mary's > Bolans
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Bolans
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4 star — Cocobay Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 65
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Antigua's most romantic all-inclusive resort - Cocobay is a colorful collection of pastel cottages crowning a breezy hillside undulating down to two white-sand beaches and miles of turquoise Caribbean Sea. Blessed with some of the most dramatic ocean views on the island, we cater to couples seeking a romantic getaway in a quaint, natural setting. Guests can choose from 57 private, authentic, Caribbean cottages and 4 plantation houses each enjoying a private verandah with striking sea views and custom designed wooden furniture. The premium pool cottages provide the very best oceanfront locations, and other amenities such as: private plunge pool, more spacious interior including extra seating area, air conditioning, bathrobes and other extra bathroom amenities, private balcony with adirondack chairs and hammock, ceiling fan, mini fridge, shower, hair dryer, espresso coffee machine, iron & ironing board, king size bed with pillowtop mattresses and high thread count 100% Egyptian cotton sheets, in-room safe. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cocobay Hotel Bolans
Coco Bay Antigua
Cocobay Antigua
Cocobay Hotel Antigua
Cocobay Resort Antigua, Antigua And Barbuda

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