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Hawksbill by Rex Resorts
Ranked #9 of 16 Hotels in St. John's
Reviewed 17 November 2012

I have also just returned from Hawksbill and enjoyed my two weeks. It was quite surreal reading the last review because having been six times myself I had decided it was time for another very honest review. I fully endorse the previous report with some observations, I thought that the standard of catering has lost something, this may have been because this was the first time I had been outside the peak season Feb/Mar. On our arrival this occasion we were two of a total thirty nine other guests so this could be a reason. The staff almost without exception are only too happy to ensure your stay is the best it could possibly be, and I have to agree with the previous reviewer that the staff are being badly let down by Rex Resorts in the lack of investment. I understand that there are some legal issues getting in the way which concern the lease which the sooner they are resolved the better for all parties, because this is a fabulous location and with careful investment would provide another star and make it more popular and justify an increase in price.
With the necessary improvements and the existing staff who are the heart and lifeblood of Hawksbill this would certainly make for a memorable holiday.

  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Jollyboy1049
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 16 November 2012

I've reviewed this resort before but thought having been back for visit 6 that it was time to update.

Like me, people use Trip Advisor to get an idea where to visit for the very first time, so I plan on writing an honest review despite my love of the resort and all things connected to it.

Hawksbill is a beautifully located mid sized resort with a choice of 4 beaches, one being Antigua’s only clothing optional beach. The resort is traditionally Caribbean, relaxed, no frills, no TV in room, no banging music, no huge pool scene. It relies on the family atmosphere and the location to help you chill out.

There are four room types at the resort. The Garden rooms are what are offered as a base when booking (from UK), which are in single level blocks along a path running through the complex, the rooms are compact, a little dark and have no air con. The next level are the Superior Sea View rooms which are all in a pair of 2 storey blocks and closest to the main restaurant / lobby and beach bar. These rooms are large and airy, all with balconies or terraces, with two double beds. The superior sea view rooms rely on wooden shuttered windows at both sides of the room to allow a through air flow instead of any air conditioning. The upper level allow some lovely views across the Seagrapes Beach and the lower have terrace access to the gardens. Next are the Seaview Bungalows, which are in the front of the garden room blocks and face onto the Seagrapes Beach and have the wooden shuttering on the windows to allow the sea breeze to cool the room. If like me, you can’t acclimatise quickly to the tropical temperatures and sleep in the heat, then the Beach Club rooms are the ones to book as they have air conditioning fitted. There are two locations within the resort that beach club rooms are positioned, on the Royal Palm beach and on Honeymoon Cove. The Royal Palm rooms are slightly larger, but my personal favourite are the more compact Honeymoon Cove with views out to the Hawksbill Rock and wonderful sunsets.

Admittedly, the furnishings at the resort are now tired and could do with a little money being spent by the resort owners, but they are perfectly serviceable rooms and are kept spotlessly clean and fresh with daily maid service with little touches such as adding fresh flowers from the gardens to the room.

All meals are served in the main dining room, which during high season is part open air. Meals vary between self service buffet evenings and a la carte menu / waitress service. The food has never been anything other than excellent quality in the 6 visits I have now made with more choice available in high season than at quieter times. Head Chef, Sean Weekes, has a wonderful team and they work tirelessly to please the guests. I actually look forward to getting back out there to the amazing bacon at breakfast time, one of these visits I’ll actually find out how they cook it to my idea of perfection (crisp and well done but not cremated)

The bar service has been my undoing on many an occasion, from Millie’s Mixology, the cocktail making class, which takes place weekly at the beach bar during the day, to the never ending wine with dinner through to the post dinner cocktails!

I’ve now visited the hotel at various times of year and the atmosphere varies depending on guest levels, March/April the resort is buzzing, with a full restaurant, lively bar scene and plenty of new faces. Visit in the British summertime and you will find a more intimate experience with fewer guests but then you have more time to get to know the amazing family of staff.

However busy the resort, the beaches never feel crowded and there is always plenty of space, however there needs to be some investment in new sun lounger chairs as there are many tired and broken around the resort (particularly on the 4th / Eden Beach)

In brief, if you are looking for a commercial type, character free, modern executive hotel, one of those ‘you could be anywhere in the world and not know where’ types, then Hawksbill isn’t for you. However if you are looking for a place to totally get away from it all, really feel you are in the Caribbean, meet some amazing new people, both local and other tourists, eat and drink well and have fun, then maybe you ought to give it a try.

Please contact me if you would like more information about the resort. I am a repeat guest and I love it, but assure you of my total honesty with regards to whether I believe it will suit you as I hate reading the negative reports of the resort and would rather prevent people booking than being unhappy.

Finally - My personal comment to the owners of Rex Resorts and in no way aimed at the local management team who work hard to ensure the guests have an amazing time - Hawksbill should and could be the jewel in your crown, you are failing the resort and the people who work there by not making more investment into it. There is gold to be mined, with investment and good marketing you’ll find it.

Room Tip: Garden rooms are base entry level, beach club are the top end (with air con) Honeymoon Cove rooms h...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank boo1066
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 November 2012

Congratulations to Hyacinth and everyone at Hawksbill for providing such a warm welcome and for ensuring that their guests enjoy a totally relaxing holiday.

The location is stunning, very quiet and peaceful - four lovely beaches, pretty tropical gardens and every member of staff always wears a smile! Customer service is fist class and everyone is very friendly.

Some buildings do appear to be a little tired but, there have been several tropical storms this summer which must cause severe damage to buildings and beach facilities. Our Beachfront Club room at Honeymoon Cove was wonderful.

Next time we need to completely relax in very comfortable accommodation, with good food and drink and fabulous staff, we will return to Hawksbill Resort.

Thank you, Hyacinth and everyone at Hawksbill, for making our stay so special.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Marjory1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 November 2012 via mobile

Despite all the efforts of the personnel to keep the resort tidy, it's a bit like putting a plaster on a wooden leg!...
The resort is really suffering of a lack long standing maintenace and TLC! Non matching tired furnitures, derelict parasols, bare bulb lamps, wobbly tables, nearly broken chest of draws in the room,.... Shame because it has all the cards in hand to be a fantastic resort! Perfect coved sandy beach, nice green garden with flowers and palm trees, bungalows with sea view, only a hundred rooms so it's a cosy size.
But everything looks like second hand from a charity shop...
The personnel is helpfull and friendly. And really doing its best to make you feel confortable.
Food is also their weak point... Quite average. Fresh and home made, no doubt about it . But lack of spice and imagination (at the image of the resort in itself). If you're not english, you'll be quickly bored of the full english breakfast! So I live on fruits and toasts ... Do not expect real filter coffea either! Instant nescafe only!
Not a lot carribean food for lunch and dinner. Just some sample... But lots of burgers, fries, roasted pork or beef, boiled veg and roast potatoes.... So I fear more than I expect the meals...
Undrinkable cheap wine too. Stay with cocktails! You cant be desappointed with G&T or piña comada...
All that is really a shame and I only blame the management. The personnel is doing well with the scare means at his disposal. The direction is sitting on a goldmine without investing a penny!
The conclusion is that beeing more a self-organiser of my holidays I'm not the typical client of yhat kind of all inc holidays resort.
I did some with Club Med or Nouvelles Frontières and never ended up in a place beyond my expectations like in Hawksbill!

On the positive side: it's petfect to relax, sunbathe, read the books you never have time to read, swim, ... And diet! ;/))

  • Stayed: November 2012
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3  Thank Aralya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 November 2012

We just returned after 1 week at the Hawksbill. It is secluded and very relaxing. The crowd is a bit older and mellow -- mostly Brits. If you visit when we did, during the rainy season, expect some bug bites (mostly mosquitos). The resort boasts 4 beaches, with one being c/o. The c/o beach is extremely secluded and very nice, probably the best of the 4 beaches. A perfect location for couples wanting to try out a c/o beach. The evening meals were wonderful, with International Night being our favorite. While the resort does need a little work, the staff are nice, the food is good, and we did have a wonderful time. If you want to chill out, relax and unwind, we recommend this resort to you.

Room Tip: We rarely stay in our room but to sleep and change clothes, so we go for the best value available.
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  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank WESTSIDESTORY2001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 November 2012

Just returned after a week's holiday from 2-9 November. Had read all the reviews on Trip Advisor and picked it as a result of the good reviews. The location is brilliant. The gardens are well maintained and extensive. The accommodation was described by another guest as rustic and that is probably a good description. We had a superior seaview bungalow (No 68) and were within a stone's throw of the beach. The waves formed the backdrop to our days and nights. The bathroom was basic but everything worked fine although a hairdrier was attached to the wall over the sink which I always worry about. The bedroom was basic but had coffee machine (which I used for tea), small fridge, fan, chairs and a table, mosquito repellent machine (which I found quite late on the last day), a verandah and outside table and chairs. There are slightly larger ones nearer to the pool we found, so it seems to be pot luck unless you know to ask for one of these.Other guests said that the bungalows on the other beach were slightly larger and had air conditioning. The Honemoon Cove rooms seemed to be compact but had air conditioning too.

One of the guests said to me "you either 'get it' here or you don't" At first sight the accommodation can be disappointing especially if you have stayed in hotels in the Middle East. But I have never stayed somewhere where not only the staff but the guests were so friendly to each other.

The food was a bit of a surprise - a lot of English food - roast beef etc and some Caribbean options were there but I would have liked more. We tried the butter fish, Banga Mary fish, jerk chicken, creole chicken. Breakfast didn't fire the imagination. There was a limited choice of fruit, cooked breakfast (but sausages and bacon overcooked) bagels, toast. Lunch was served by the beach and was a mix of grilled fish/burgers with a few things like club sandwiches/paninis available to order and precooked choices such as lasagna, curry, pizza. Dinner alternated between buffet style and waitress served. I did wonder if this was to limit the amount of food eaten. The bar closes at 10.30 which seemed early but while it is open Millie and David keep the drinks coming with smiles.

If you want a week to relax, read, sunbathe, swim , do some sailing, play tennis or just have a chat with the staff or the other guests this will be for you. If you want non stop activity, loud music, entertainment teams, having to reserve your sunbed every morning then this isn't for you. Despite having had lots of experience of glitzy hotels, we liked the place - it's seriously laid back and has a warmth you won't find elsewhere. Will we be going back - I think so.

Room Tip: Ask for one of the seaview bungalows near the pool, or in Honeymoon Cove if you want air conditionin...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Beverley155
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 November 2012

We arrived at the Hawksbill last Wednesday evening and although the staff were really accommodating and friendly the hotel accommodation is in need of a complete overall the garden room that we were supposed to stay in was awful. If we had booked a camping type holiday then maybe that room would be just about ok but we have just spent a fair amount of money on what we consider to be a shabby room. We were given another sea view room but this wasn't, that much better apart from an aircon unit which is in need of a clean it smelt bad.
Virgin were good and moved us to a better hotel but we had to pay £500 more.
REX RESORTS fix up do better you are letting down your staff they must feel nothing but embarrassed to work for such a shabby organisation and you are not a budget hotel so do better.

Room Tip: I don't think the Hawks bill has any good rooms but the rooms with sea views are supposed to be...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Marlene M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hawksbill by Rex Resorts

Address: Five Islands, St. John's, Antigua
Region: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint John Parish > St. John's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 On the Beach Hotel in St. John's
#7 Top resorts Hotel in St. John's
Price Range: £109 - £311 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Hawksbill by Rex Resorts 3*
Number of rooms: 107
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Also Known As:
Hawksbill By Rex Hotel St. John`s
Hawksbill Antigua
Hawksbill By Rex Antigua
Hawksbill Hotel Antigua
Hawksbill Beach Resort
Hawksbill Resort Antigua
Hawksbill By Rex Resorts Antigua/Saint John Parish

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