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“A delightful hotel.”

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Carlisle Bay Antigua
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Saint Mary's
Certificate of Excellence
Hertfordshire
Level Contributor
19 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“A delightful hotel.”
Reviewed 5 August 2014

We were travelling with a 14 year old and a 12 year old. We found the hotel to be absolutely fantastic. It was our first dip into 'all inclusive' and we were nervous about how that would go. I have to report the food quality was excellent. We found it to be varied, interesting and always offered a healthy option. The staff were lovely, finding the balance between providing top class service and not being too over the top. We came across an atmosphere of friendliness and people seemed genuinely pleased to have you to stay. We found the poolside area to be more suited to smaller children, where they could play safely and be surrounded by like minded people; a lovely, playful atmosphere. Our family preferred the beach, as did a lot of older aged kids and families. We were never over crowded, and there's so much to do in the beautiful water. (You will be expertly looked after by the wonderful water sports staff).

We stayed in rooms 205 and 206 which had interconnecting doors which was fantastic. Loads of space! Younger families, I'm sure could fit in one room.

Make sure you try the delightful 'Carlisle Bay' cocktail ( created by the fabulous Ben Willets) . Lethal!

I hope you enjoy your stay as much as we did. It's a stunning, quirky island, and this is a fabulous hotel in which to base yourself.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JJ1612
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 14 August 2014
Dear JJ1612,

Thank you for your kind comments. We are delighted to hear that the entire family had a great time.

I will certainly share your kind comments with Ben, water sports and the rest of the team who I know will be equally delighted.

We thank you for choosing Carlisle Bay and look forward to welcoming back the entire family.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (276)
Date | Rating
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English first
Derby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed 5 August 2014 via mobile

Just got back from this beautiful place, what can I say heaven! The staff were amazing nothing was too much trouble especially with my daughter who just ate pasta! Clean friendly food was amazing. Well done to all at Carlisle bay had a wonderful stay.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank sonia a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 14 August 2014
Dear Sonia A,

Thank you for your lovely comments. We are absolutely thrilled to hear of the amazing time your family had and that you were able to enjoy our array of gourmet cuisine in particular, the pasta that your daughter enjoyed so much!.

I will share with the team your kind feedback who I know will be pleased.

Thank you for choosing us, we look forward to having your family join us once again.
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Nyack, New York
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 July 2014

My Wife and I will be returning to Carlisle Bay at the end of October to celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary. I was going to wait until then to write a review, but why keep something so great to myself. This will not only be our our 4th trip to Antigua, but our 4th to Carlisle Bay. We fell in love with this GEM in 2011 to the point that we decided on the spot to get married at CB the next year. We will keep returning to Carlisle Bay well into the future. There is not one aspect of this resort that is not worthy of 5 Stars. Management, Chefs, Directors, Guest Services, Food and Beverage Staff, Facilities, Waterfront/Water Sports, Spa, Butler (Yes, you Larry) The grounds are immaculate, rooms outstanding (love the Nespresso machine) I really can't say enough. Visit Carlisle Bay and you'll be hooked, just like we are.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank latsandatts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 31 July 2014
Dear Latsandatts,

Thank you for sharing your kind comments. I will certainly pass these on to the rest of team and in particular Larry, who I know will be pleased.

We thank you for your continued support and we look forward to your return in October.
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 July 2014

Today is our last day (25 July 2014). We stayed in Carlisle Suite 21 which is a ground floor 3 bed next to the main building, almost the most expensive room at $2000 inc service and taxes a day for bed and breakfast. We have three kids aged 13 and under.

We loved the place because we were in the mood for it. You don't come to the Caribbean and moan about the pace of anything. The staff are wonderful and I noted from reading the previous reviews and my personal experience that most complaints seem to have been addressed. I wouldn't take much note of any review here pre-2014. Yes there are times when you think management has gone home but it ebbs and flows and in the main it's when you are being picky, not them.

However, ghost town chic is very hard to pull off as I found with Sandy Lane Barbados a few years ago, having gone there soon after a business trip to Dubai. In Dubai you see every penny you pay, often in gold leaf. At Sandy Lane you had to appreciate that the money went on the exclusivity and qualities that you may not notice at first. Our top suite at CB was about the same price as the cost of the cheapest SL suite, and that's probably as good a measure as any to judge this hotel. It's expensive, but not in the SL league. Equally it's high quality, but you can see the gaps. The hotel feels like it aspires to Sandy Lanelevel and to some extent they are charging first and using the money to invest in getting there. If you are here to chill, with your needs being a beach, a pool and relative quiet then do it here and save the money you would have spent on Sandy Lane.

It's a small hotel with almost no nightlife and you need to get that. The reception area is a desk with a laptop which on your arrival highlights the low key, low visibility feeling to the place. We arrived on 12 July and we found out after a few days that the occupancy was very low, which contributed to the feeling. By the end it had filled up but you could hardly describe it as bustling.

The food was high quality at every meal, although criticism of cost and range of menus are both very valid. We went out for lunch at English Harbour yesterday and the cost of the meal was half that of the same thing in the hotel. We had decided against the all-inclusive as it would have cost the five of us something like £500 per day and we thought we would have to be permanently drunk (including the kids) to get value for money. Having just paid $350 for a meal at the Asian restaurant a few nights ago now we are not so sure. I suspect our bill for two weeks food and drink will be $3000. That said the food is very good quality, decent volume and there is always a beans on toast type option lurking for picky kids. We stayed for two weeks and it would have been nice to have seen a weekly menu change. There is a daily special or two to address this but they could go further. Other places have themed nights and this might help change the impression of too slender a menu. Breakfast was included and pretty good. We normally expect to see a full buffet, but that encourages gluttony so the fact that the hot food was to order was a good thing and there was a good variety of that. Afternoon tea is light and also included, as are the fruit kebabs brought to you on the beach. The Indigo restaurant is open to the elements, and the finches, which dogfight their way around and through the restaurant throughout breakfast. Some might not like this, and you had to keep at least one person at your table to protect your rolls if you went up for some fruit! It does however fit the feel of the hotel. It's more Goldeneye beach home that the Four Seasons, where no doubt some irate person would have jangled their jewellery and asked for the birds to be shot...

With this hotel it's all about the beach. We normally spend more time around the pool then the beach when we are on holiday but it would have been perverse to do it here. The beach is Maldives quality in that it is golden, safe and warm. The kids can swim, kayak or sail with the minimum of hazard. It's very hard to beat. We opened our doors to a terrace on the sand and spent the two weeks pretty much in that narrow corridor. Why wouldn't you?

Rooms are fine. We were pleased when we arrived and stayed happy. Wifi is very good, which is great for our teenager (and parents if I am honest) and extends across the grounds and even the beach. We had an air con problem which was fixed promptly. We briefly had a family move in above us and we did notice the noise of footsteps and scraping furniture. They moved and were not replaced so we were lucky. This is something for the hotel to think about as it chases the better clientele. Our suite is next to the Indigo and you can hear some drone from the aircon but it is very slight, drowned out by the waves and constant birdsong. I suspect that the family above may have moved out for that reason as the aircon units were level with their balcony. A bit of screening at roof level, or enclosing the steps of their balcony with a wall might be required. A light in the bathroom is a bit loose but cleaners are good, fruit every day and an evening turndown service provide quality but not pampering. The kitchen has a big fridge/freezer, microwave, kettle, coffee machine, dishwasher and toaster. The fridge is stocked with minibar items of the usual type. What there isn't is cutlery or enough plates to service the people in the room. It would have been a good touch to fill them with these items even if they are not going to be used. The daily refill of only four chocolate bars for five people nearly caused a daily Lord of the Flies reinactment. It's the sort of thing they need to spot and improve on to add to the impression that you are a guest in their home, not their hotel.

Facilities are all good. Much to do for free and the kids never said they were bored once. The pool is small and I suspect that they could lose a few of the many tennis courts if they wanted space to put a kids pool in by the kids club. The spa is a boon and the gym large. The teenage club is a bit basic but this is common with that hard to please group who don't really want to spend any time with anything other than their iphone. The gift shop is sparse and rarely manned but they are close to finishing a new one so wait and see. The tennis shop has swimmers and bits and again is opened on request. By the beach sports there is a hut selling t shirts and the like which is nice, but you have to recognise that with only 80 rooms there is not the footfall to justify a shopping centre. The library is magnificent but feels like an object for show. A lot more kids books probably would encourage more visitors but I could understand if this was meant to be an adult haven. There was a copy of Alice in Wonderland in our room which our seven year old devoured with glee. More please!

Overall we loved our time here and any criticism is meant to help them improve as they seem to be doing. The staff were all great at every level and in every function. Buying an Antigua Hawksbill cricket shirt increased my popularity greatly and that would be my tip. If you can cope with the slight overpricing and come here determined to do nothing with a family then you are going to have a great time. If this becomes Little Sandy Lane then I shall not be surprised, and the beach is better here!

Room Tip: There are no bad views. Ground floor beach rooms for young kids are a must. Couples should stay high...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Stevetheliquidator
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 31 July 2014
Dear Steventheliquidator,

Thank you for your kind feedback, It is not every day that as a hotel you are blessed by receiving such detailed comments. As a team we cannot thank you more for taking the time to write.
Without feedback like yours we would not be able to stay on top of our game and strive as a service team to excel in meeting all of our guest expectations.

We are very happy to hear that your overall stay was great and the entire family was able to participate in the various activities. At the same time, we wish to apologise for the inconveniences you had and are pleased to say that we are addressing the points on multiple levels.

Again we thank you for your sincerity and for taking the time to write as it can only allow us to improve in these areas.

We thank you for choosing Carlisle Bay and truly look forward to having you stay with us again so you may experience the enhancements and rekindle with the quaint Caribbean charm you've experienced.
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Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
Reviewed 24 July 2014 via mobile

Treated my parter to a spa day whilst I spent the time by the pool, followed by an excellent three-course lunch (included in the day rate). Friendly staff who really take time and look after you during your stay. All of the facilities are immaculate and the setting is quintessentially caribbean, with white sand beaches, palm trees and crystal clear blue water. Cannot recommend highly enough. Will definitely be returning for a longer stay in the future.

Stayed July 2014
Helpful?
Thank ThomasBunnell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 31 July 2014
Dear ThomasBunnell,

Thank you for sharing your feedback and it was a pleasure having you both with us for the day.

I am delighted to read that you had a chance to experience some of our facilities and that the entire team took really good care of you, so much so that you are planning on staying with us on your next visit.

Thank you once again for choosing Carlisle Bay and we look forward to your return!
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London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviewed 23 July 2014

We spent 10 nights at Carlisle Bay for our honeymoon at the end of June 2014. We had the most wonderful time! The service was incredible and the staff were so so lovely and went above and beyond for the guests. A special shout out to Tony on the front desk, who is just wonderful!! The food was delicious, cocktails amazing (& strong) and the hotel immaculate. Our ocean view room was so lovely and spacious and so well looked after. I loved the little touches on the beach, like the cool boxes filled with water and ice by the sun loungers and the fruit skewers handed around mid morning and of course afternoon tea everyday between 3 ad 5pm. One of our favorite things was lunch and dinner in Indigo sat on the table in the center right in front of the beach...what a view! We also did the jetty dinner which was incredibly special and recommended.
We hope one day we can go back for another wonderful holiday at Carlisle Bay!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank olicshaw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 31 July 2014
Dear Olicshaw,

Thank you for such lovely feedback! I will share your comments with Tony and the rest of the team, who I know will be delighted.

We are all thrilled that you both had a wonderful time and we were able to make your special occasion magical! We are even happier to read that you enjoyed and discovered some of the many treasures we offer at Carlisle Bay!

Thank you for choosing us, we do hope that you will join us again sooner than later ………
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Pewsey
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2014

I don't mean to brag but I have stayed on every Caribbean Island there is!
Until this holiday the best island I'd visited was Barbados.
Now this hotel has taken the mantle!
Lovely rooms, lovely beach, lovely swimming pools, lovely food.
But most of all, LOVELY PEOPLE, STAFF AND SERVICE!
We had a family holiday consisting of 2 grandparents, 5 parents and 5 kids under 7!!
There is no "adults only" swimming pool so be prepared for lots of screaming kids if you want to sit round the pool - it really is geared around the kids but as a parent I'm all for that!
The staff and hotel were so accommodating, they always made sure there was a table big enough for us at all the mealtimes, no matter how busy they were.
It was my daughters 7th birthday while we were out there and, following my requests, they supplied balloons, birthday cake and plenty of other lovely little touches: my daughter said "I can't believe I'm having a birthday in paradise"!
I think that says it all!

Room Tip: My only gripe was that we stayed on the ground floor. Pro's:This was fantastic for instant be...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank blackpantherevo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotel M, Manager at Carlisle Bay Antigua, responded to this review, 31 July 2014
Dear Blackpantherevo,

Thank you for your kind comments. We are delighted to hear of the amazing time had by the entire family. It was absolutely a pleasure havingyou all with us, we will certainly look forward to many more returns!!
Report response as inappropriate
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Additional Information about Carlisle Bay Antigua

Property: Carlisle Bay Antigua
Address: Old Rd, Saint Mary's 00000, Antigua
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint Mary's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Saint Mary's
#3 Family Hotel in Saint Mary's
#4 Romantic Hotel in Saint Mary's
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Carlisle Bay Antigua 5*
Number of rooms: 82
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Carlisle Bay on Antigua is one of the leading luxury Caribbean resorts, its accommodation designed to allow for both families and couples to holiday in peace. Both kinds of traveler have a dedicated end of the resort, which allows for everyone the tranquility of the spectacular beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Carlisle Bay Antigua Hotel Saint Mary`s
Carlisle Bay Hotel Antigua
Carlisle Bay Resort Antigua

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