Controlling the controllable.
Jumby Bay could not control the few bad days of weather but everything else within their control was executed flawlessly.
This is a lengthy thorough review but given the few currently on Trip Advisor I wanted to cover as much as possible.
Getting to the hotel was a breeze. After clearing customs (took way too long, the airport is eerily inefficient they clearly aren't staffed for three planes to arrive/depart at one time) a woman asks where you are staying. We said "Jumby Bay" and where whisked outside to the Jumby Bay stand and greeted by a lovely woman while we waited for a town car to take us to the dock. The dock was less than a 10 minute drive where we waited about five minutes for the Jumby Bay ferry. The ride to our private island was less than 10 minutes where we were greeted by lovely Rita dockside. Check in was a breeze by the bar as we sipped on a lovely rum punch. A quick imprint of my credit card and we were whisked away by golf cart to Courtyard Suite 27.
Jumby Bay the island is lush and and well spread out. This really does not feel like a "hotel.". The resort is well spread out along the coast with the rest of the island having monster private "compounds" along the coastline of the rest of the property. There is a lot of open space throughout the island making it feel very remote. The bikes outside our door are a great way to see the 300 acres. A 30 minute bike ride let's you see the entire island. Since this is an island the resort really is all there is to do. If you are looking for an active nightlife this really is not the place. You can take the ferry over to the Mainland but we never did.
We had booked a Courtyard Suite but with the Fine Hotel program through American Express they give a complimentary upgrade if available. We were hoping for the upgrade to the pool suite. I was told the upgrade wasn't available but if a pool suite opened up we would have the option of moving (we moved the next day). Our original suite was #27 which had a great view of the water. I would try to get into the suites 27-40, they have the best views. The pool suite we moved into was suite #20 and while the view was decent the rooms in the 30's clearly were the best for being close to the water.
The room itself was great. A living room and bedroom with a gorgeous bathroom off to the side. The outdoor spaces were great, we really enjoyed having the pool after a long day on the beach. We would wind down in the pool at sunset with a cocktail. The bathroom was great and the open air concept shower was luxurious. The outdoor shower and tub got a bit of getting used to but you end up trusting the courtyard walls being high enough for privacy.
The bed was extremely comfortable, with great linens.
A room with no key took a bit of getting used to but we just locked all valuables in safe during the day. At night once in the room you can lock all the doors from the inside.
Overall the food was quite good with a lot of selections which changed daily. My only disappointment was that a few evenings only one of the two restaurants were open for dinner because of the resort being slow. It would have been nice to be told this before we arrived.
The Estate House: the more "formal" of the two dining options. They request that men wear long pants, which was a bit annoying given I'm on vacation and what the hotel costs but not the end of the world. The staff was AMAZING and I wanted to give special recognition to Melissa, Joseph, Patrice, Lois, Franca, and Seon. The fantastic staff at the Estate House went out of their way to make experience enjoyable and fun. They even made sure that the chef baked key lime pie (not on the menu) for my wife's birthday.
The Veranda: is the more casual dining option and the go to stop for breakfast. Maureen at the front desk was always a great way to start your day. Food selection was quite good for breakfast.
Pool Grill: nice casual spot for lunch. Easy walk up from the beach for a sandwich, salad, etc. And the Jumby burger was fantastic!
Two dining experiences that were great were "white night" Sunday evening where the Veranda has a big barbecue on the beach with local cuisines. On Wednesday night the "Taste of Antigua" at the pool grill was the highlight meal. The chef (can't remember his name) from the Pool Grill makes all types of local foods. Everything was fantastic, and the chef was a blast. It as a horrible name but the Goat Water is. Must try!
The quality of Jumby Bay beach and water was a bit of a disappointment. I would give them both a B-/C+. The beach is tranquil and beautiful looking but the sand is far from powdery soft like elsewhere in the Caribbean and more course and gravely. The beach itself is fairly narrow but ample for sitting and relaxing. There are approximately 40 covered with Palapas each with two lounge chairs, a raft, and two low sly back chairs that are great for sitting in the water and reading. The beach service was a bit iffy. Certain days as soon as we were seated we were greated with a server that brought a cooler of bottled water and a snack, but other days we literally had to use our yellow flag to get any sort of attention. Food from the Pool Grill can be delivered right to the beach.
The water from afar looks inviting but again was disappointing and not great for swimming. Depending where you were located on the beach anywhere from 15 to 30 feet from the beach the water became cloudy, lots of sea weed, and a bottom that frankly felt more like a squishy lake bottom than a tropical oasis (frankly it was disgusting). I guess that's what you get with a "bay."
The room was equipped with free wifi which worked surprisingly well. Really no signal on the beach or other common areas.
Small but very ample for a resort this size. Of the five days I worked out each day I was the only person in the gym. It is well equipped with three treadmills, two cross trainers, a stepper, and two bikes. There is a small weight area with dumbbells up through 50lbs and two pulley weight towers.
The staff really made the resort! Rosewood has done an exceptional job of training the entire staff from the housekeepers the front desk. Everyone waves, everyone says hi, and most amazing to me is they all greeted us by name. As someone who is horrible with names the name recognition was fantastic and made for a very warm overall experience. It was amazing as well that when ever we got a ride n the golf card back to our room after dinner they always new what suite we were in.
Generally very, very good. There were a few minor issues but not enough to detract from the overall experience. Housekeeping was done twice a day, with turndown service at night with slippers, a bottle of water, and a pastry waiting bedside each evening. The few times we needed housekeeping for matches, extra towels, etc a quick push of zero on the phone and the were there in less than 5 minutes.
-At night use the Off provided in the room. The Mosquitos like to come out and play
-Request Form: fill out the request form sent by the Joel because they do a great job honoring requests, noting special occasions, etc.
-Kids: I'm not sure why'd you really want to bring kids here, there isn't a ton to do. The do have a kids club during the day. At the risk of sounding like a grump, if you do bring kids to a resort that is close to $2,000 a night make sure they know how to behave n restaurants and on the beach. We aren't paying those prices to hear crying kids, or a yelling child ruling the solitude and quiet on the beach.
Overall a five star stay. Everything was fantastic especially the staff from the front desk, to the restaurants, to the bell hops, all very magnificently trained. Thanks for a great trip.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A 300-acre private island located just two miles off the coast of Antigua, Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort casts a spell of serene enchantment. A naturalist's haven that plays host to a variety of wildlife a midst the tropical foliage and pristine, white sand beaches, this all-inclusive hideaway is recognized world-wide as a private island resort paradise. With 40 luxurious resort rooms and suites, and a host of privately owned residences, Jumby Bay's exemplary hospitality is something that has long been lauded by the Caribbean's most discerning travelers. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Southall Travel and Hotels.com so you can book your Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Jumby Bay, a Rosewood Hotel St. John`s
- Jumby Bay Antigua
- Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort Antigua/Saint John Parish