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“Worst 10 hours EVER!!! Night from hell!!!”

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Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts
Ranked #5 of 15 Hotels in St. John's
lisa_elli2000
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Worst 10 hours EVER!!! Night from hell!!!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 May 2014

Apologies for the long review but I think people ought to know all the details.
We had to stay in Antigua on our way home from Dominican republic due to availability on the flight, so we needed to find a safe and clean hotel for the night.
We were recommended the Halcyon cove by the airport staff so thought it would be fine to stay here with my family (my husband, 5 year old child and my mother)
How wrong I was!!!

I'll start with the small issues

1. Rude receptionist wouldn't put us in a room together as said that it wasn't what we asked for when airline had rang ahead, she then looked blankly when I asked if it was possible, we were so tired I said I would just take the 2 they had prepared. (Rooms they gave us were quite far apart from each other and we were told there was nothing close together, we will find out later this was not the case)
They charged us 400 US dollars which is extortionate for such a poor quality hotel.

2. Food. We arrived late so requested they make us a selection of sandwiches as restaurant was closed. We received 'plastic' cheese sandwiches (like the cheap individual wrapped cheese slice you would put on a burger). Bread was dry and curled up like they had been made a very long time. Basically inedible.

3. Drinks. We arrived at 10pm and were told the bar would be open until 12. I went over for drinks at 11:15 and it was all packed away. The barkeep actually tutted at me when I asked for drinks, I asked what the problem was to be told "well there was no one here so I want to close". He did serve me but looked less than impressed that I had disturbed him. Also, bottled water is chargeable!! This is supposed to be an all inclusive resort.

4. Suspected prowler. As I say, it was late when we arrived, I noticed a man dressed in dark clothes lying very still on a lounger in the grounds. He saw me looking so got up quickly and went behind the buildings. Could of been security but didn't look like he had a uniform on so it was very unnerving.

5. There were 2 gates to the beach (which is public), both were smashed of their hinges, did not feel very secure at all. (I noticed this while wandering the grounds at 6am)

Now for the horrendous!!

Initially we all went into 1 room (room 234) it was grubby looking, marks on bedding and walls but we thought it would do for a night.
I settled my daughter in this room with my husband then my mother and I went to the other room (220)
Again it was grubby but it was also very smelly, like it had been empty for a while. We watched TV until we couldn't stay awake then got into bed and the horror begins.
I was woken at 2am by my hysterical mother as the bed and both of us were covered in BED BUGS. Loads of them. My mother had bites all down her arm and we were itching like crazy. When we killed a few of them there was blood all over the bed, our blood from where they had been feasting, there were even drops of blood on my phone.
I rang reception repeatedly but no answer so we went to the other room. Tried again to ring reception with no joy so at 2:30am I had to walk up (bearing in mind the person I had seen lurking around made that very unpleasant)
The "night manager" was nowhere to be seen but a large man in a leather jacket appeared and told me to go back and use the phone. I refused due to no answers so leather jacket man started banging on the reception door. After a few attempts the "night manager" appeared, clearly he had been asleep. I was very upset and explained what had happened, he just pushed a key to me saying "move to here, I will look at the other room" no apology or concern at all, in fact he didn't even look surprised.
He had given me the key for 235 (next door to my other room, so much for there being none close together!)
My husband inspected my daughters bed and thankfully it was ok. I didn't want to go near it though in case there were bugs on my clothes so my mother and I stayed in the new room.
New room had a flimsy door with no security chain. There were also flower petals scattered all over the bed but they were shrivelled and black like they had been there for weeks. I tried to check the bed but we were so upset and felt horribly itchy that we just sat in chairs waiting for it to get light so we could go and sit outside. We sat on a wall from 5:30am.
Went back to reception at 7, spoke to the night manager who said he had been down and seen the bugs (he called them fleas but i know they were big, full of blood and didn't jump, they were definitely bed bugs). He said there was no one able to help until 8am.

At 8 we were seen by the manager who looked thoroughly embarrassed, he and the reception girl apologised to us. At first he offered 50% discount but then refunded the full amount. We left immediately and checked into another hotel.

All in all this is hands down the worst resort I have ever stayed in.

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank lisa_elli2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GMrexresorts, General Manager at Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 21 May 2014
Our apologies for what took place.

You arrived at 10 pm to check in for one night.
We apologize for not allocating the rooms close to each other as requested.

The restaurant is open from 1900h- 2130h and therefore we arranged some cheese sandwiches to be delivered to your room by the evening manager.

The bar is open until 2400h and you came to the bar at 2340h, during that time the bartender was in preparation of closing but did serve four drinks as requested.

Our security guard has confirmed that it was he that was seen on the sun lounger and that there was no prowler.

The two gates to the beach are currently under repair.

As you can imagine, we have to investigate any claims of infestation and can confirm that the pest control company has reported no evidence of bed bugs. It has been suggested that sand flies were the possible cause of the incident.

The following morning, we met in my office to express your experiences since your arrival at the hotel late the previous evening.

Upon hearing of your dissatisfaction, we arranged a full refund of the total amount paid for both rooms.

We hope that this immediate action demonstrates our good faith and regret that your short stay with us caused so many issues.

Looking forward to your next visit in the near future to extent our hospitality and courtesies that Halcyon Cove is famous for.

Best Regards
N.Chahwan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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south carolina
Level Contributor
425 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 109 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 May 2014 via mobile

Our dive group, Wateree Dive Center from Columbia, SC, while on our way to Dominica,had to overnight in Antigua after Our LIAT flight was 3 hours late, forcing us to overnight in Antigua. LIAT, to their credit, sent us by taxi to Halcyon Cove for the night. The hotel was clean, with a very nice staff & we enjoyed dinner & our stay overnight. We had a 3:00 am wake up to get back to the airport, about 20 minutes away for a 5:30 am flight to St. Lucia prior to finally getting to Dominica. Halcyon Cove was a nice stay, considering the frustration with LIAT.

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank tgrdvrmd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GMrexresorts, General Manager at Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 8 May 2014
Thank you for the nice review and pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us. Looking forward to your next extended visit in the near future.
Regards.
N. Chahwan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chichester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
25 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 May 2014

We went on honeymoon and were concerned by some of the comments that implied it would not be very good. Yes, it's true, the place is a little tired, but it really doesn't matter. The people are so lovely, they cannot do enough for you, the food was so good that we ate far too much most days, and the drinks are fine too. The water sports were also excellent. All in all superb value in a superb location. We can't wait to return.

Room Tip: Pool side rooms are excellent, very large.
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Paul160762
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GMrexresorts, General Manager at Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 8 May 2014
Thank you for your kind remarks and it was a pleasure serving you.Looking forward to your next visit at Halcyon Cove in the near future.
Best Regards.
N. Chahwan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 May 2014

My husband and I stayed at the Halcyon Cove in March, we were in Antigua for the England v West Indies cricket. On arrival we were given a free room upgrade, staying in one of the sea view rooms overlooking the pool and the beach. Our room was very nice, a good size, great view and spotlessly clean. Food wasn't great although the Warri Pier is a great setting. The staff were very friendly and helpful. On our last day we wanted to keep our room on as we had an evening flight but we couldn't. Instead we paid for a garden view room for the day. We had booked this room type when organised our holiday ... boy were we glad we were given the upgrade! The garden view room was cramped and dark with no tea/coffee making facilities, it was depressing. I'd have cried if I'd been given a garden view room on arrival. The moral of this story? Pay a little extra for a sea view room ... it really is worth it.

Room Tip: Garden view rooms are not pleasant ... pay a little extra for a sea view room ... it's worth it!
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank gerilittlechild
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GMrexresorts, General Manager at Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 8 May 2014
Thank you for your comments and pleased that you had a great vacation. In every hotel you have different categories of rooms with much lesser amenities pending on the price.
Looking forward to making Halcyon Cove a part of your travel in the near future.
Regards.
N. Chahwan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 April 2014

I travelled with my husband and my 15 month old during the Easter week. At first impression you will not think much of the place . As well, the hotel is not a busy place if you are looking for a party atmosphere; however, if you want a beautiful, family, relaxed vacation, then this is the place. Rooms are older but very clean. If you need any extra towels or pillows you will get them right away. Any reasonable request is fulfilled. The food is delicious. Not a lot of selection but if you prefer quality over quantity this is what you will get. The breakfast and lunch are buffets and the dinner is a la carte. There is not a lot to do after dinner but we did not care because we were in our room by 10pm since we had to put the baby to sleep.

The only downsize is that the hotel does not have cribs, only playpens. But we were really well accommodated by having a small bed added to our king size bed. Also if you care to drink bottled water you will need to purchase it, as bottled water is not included.

The beach is fantastic especially for kids because there are not a lot of waves and the water is something out of pictures. You can also go for a nice stroll on the beach to watch the most beautiful sunsets. Sandals is right next door so you will see lots of weddings on the beach. We saw 5 in a week. The weather is amazing... it is not too humid and not too hot. It is perfect.
If you want to go to town you will need to take a cab, but unless you want to see commercial jewellery store, there isn’t much to do in town. In 2 hours you have seen St. John’s.

Overall, it was the best family vacation we have been in. Both my husband and my kid absolutely loved it. I would highly recommend it if you are looking to relax and forget about the world!!!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank suebimbo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GMrexresorts, General Manager at Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts, responded to this review, 21 May 2014
Thank you for your kind words and pleased that you had a great vacation.We will ensure on your next visit to have a crib placed in your room on arrival.
Looking forward to welcome you at Halcyon Cove in the near future.
N.Chahwan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Preston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 April 2014

My girlfriend and I returned to this hotel for a second year as part of our trip to several locations in the Caribbean. Like other people say, if you want Sandals - go to Sandals. This is good value for an hotel in Antigua and is in a great location - the same beach as Sandals, but on a slightly quieter section.

We have again come in April, which is towards the end of the season. If you go in April, expect it to be quieter - we liked that.

One of the main reasons for coming back other than the excellent location are the fantastic staff who will go out of their way to help / entertain / be generally cheerful all the time. Dalston - at the bar, Roxanne - bar and restaurant and Fenton who does an hilariously entertaining kareoke, to name but a few. (We also visited the Rex in Grenada and can say the staff in the Halcyon are far friendlier). Little requests at the front desks (extra pillows, an iron for the room etc) were not a problem. We turned up hours early for check in and still got our room straight away and no quibble about when the wrist bands would start.

The room we got had had a new air conditioning unit installed - not a big thing in itself, but it puts paid to previous visitors comments about leaky air condition units. Our request about the room we made on the the booking dot com site we used was complied with.

The food was fine - there was a fair choice and the evening meals varied in location between the Arawak terrace and the Warri Pier. As you would expect there were plenty of Caribbean choices on the menu and on some days the evening menu was themed to include other options - for example one evening there was an Italian theme to the menu.

Drinks were good, with any cocktails available with the mix of a blender or pour of a few bottles.

I think in general the people who tend to post negative comments are the type of people who keep to themselves and don't make the effort to speak to anyone. Of the other guests we saw and spoke to, everyone seemed to be having a good holiday.

Regarding the pool - we didnt use it, but I can confirm that contrary to other comments it is cleaned in the morning (but why use it when there is a beautiful calm sea yards away?).

All in all, this is not a 5 star place and never claimed to be. It could possibly do with a bit of updating, but the facilities we used were fine and I can honestly say I was satisfied I got my money's worth. I would recommend paying extra to get a pool view room - we did both years and didn't regret it.

Room Tip: I would recommend paying extra to get a pool view room - we did both years and didn't regret it.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank John-jrn107
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, United States
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 April 2014

If you are looking for something expensive like Sandals, then you are at the wrong spot. Halcyon Cove is perfect for ordinary everyday people who is not concerned with the facility, but the location is perfect and having a great time with family is priceless. I love the quality of service from the front desk with the lovely Cherbin all the way to Warri Pier with Kandice. Mom and I loved how the great women and men catered to our needs. We would like to thank Fenton, Charleen, Yvonne, Ladonia, Rashana, & Ms Heleen for their great hospitality. The dining experiences were supurb by the great Chef, & I love how the staff and crew comes together to make things happen for the guests. Mom & I also had our very own taxi driver for the week, Mr. Anderson who was so patient with us so that we could enjoy the scenic tour. The spa services were simply amazing, and having vendors on the site was convenient especially if you didn't want to go to the Heritage Quay to shop! We couldn't ask for anything more, and to the management and staff of Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts, we love and thank you for making us feel welcome :-)

Room Tip: If you are afraid of crabs whose home is on the ground level, then the balcony is for you.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Tamara D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts

Property: Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts
Address: Dickenson Bay | PO Box 251, St. John's, Antigua
Region: Caribbean > Antigua and Barbuda > Antigua > Saint John Parish > St. John's
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in St. John's
#5 On the Beach Hotel in St. John's
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Halcyon Cove by Rex Resorts 3*
Number of rooms: 181
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoying a pristine picture postcard beach front location, the Halcyon Cove by rex resorts offers the very essence of a perfect Caribbean setting. Beautiful glistening waters gently lap at the palm-fringed white sands of Dickenson Bay where guests can recline beneath the palm-frond parasols or exert some energy on a variety of water sports. International buffet breakfast and dinner cuisine is served at the Arawak Terrace restaurant or treat yourself at the Warri Pier a-la-carte restaurant featuring speciality grills and lobster in its unique setting over the sea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Halcyon Cove By Rex Hotel St. John`s
Halcyon Cove Antigua
Halcyon Cove By Rex Resorts Antigua/Saint John Parish
Rex Halcyon Cove Resort
Rex Halcyon Antigua

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