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“Beautiful beach but maybe too fancy for a beach vacation”

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The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman
Ranked #3 of 10 Hotels in Seven Mile Beach
Reviewed 12 December 2013

My family (3 children) traveled to the Ritz Carlton over Thanksgiving from November 23 to 30, 2013. We had adjoining ocean front rooms, which were spacious, had balconies, huge bathrooms, and gorgeous views. My parents also stayed on a separate floor in the same building.
The hotel is a bit unusual because there really are two separate parts to it. There are basically two hotels connected by an indoor bridge that runs over a main road. What I didn't love about the hotel is that I felt like I was walking back and forth indoors all day long. When I went to the spa, I had to take a 7 minute walk. When I went to dinner, I had to take a 7 minute walk. Not a huge deal, but I like a more spacious area where you can walk outside and enjoy the nice weather rather than having to walk through a fancy hotel in a wet bathing suit.

The beach and water were gorgeous for our first 4 days. But then it rained for 2 days straight (not the hotel's fault obviously) but there was not much to do on the rainy days. My kids were so bored. They happened to have just opened the "lizard lounge" b/c of the Thanksgiving holiday and this lounge was billed as having games and X-box etc... All it was was a conference room where they put in 2 ping pong tables (but only rackets for one table), a pop a shot game, foosball and 2 xbox consoles. On the rainy days, there wasn't enough for the kids to do.

We rented a beach cabana every day. It was nice to have the covered area and we had waiter service there. It was pretty expensive though. I think $400 per day. And the sad part about it was that it was set so far back from the beach that there were 3 rows of lounge chairs between the cabana and the beach. So if you sat in the expensive cabana, you had absolutely no view of the water. Kind of silly. Also, the first day it started to rain, I thought "well, I'm glad we have the cabana so our stuff won't get all wet." I was wrong. The covering to the cabana was not waterproof so all of our ipods and kindles and clothes, etc... were getting all wet! I had to scoop everything up and run into the hotel. It was pouring so it wasn't a big deal b/c we had to go inside for the rest of the day, but it seemed like a strange design for days where there might be a 5 minute rain. All your things would be wet despite the covering.

There were 2 pools but we only went to the one by the ocean. One day it was shut b/c a baby pooped in the pool. Other than that, my kids enjoyed the pool and loved the ocean. We rented kayaks, and paddle boards etc... and they enjoyed that.

The concierge set up some trips to swim with the Dolphins and to go to Stingray City. Both of those days were highlights for us. The other days we stayed at the hotel, my kids were bored and hot by 2:00 and wanted to go back up to the room to read or watch TV, which we let them do.

The spa was AMAZING. I had an expensive, but really pampering massage. It was worth the $200. The waiting area is gorgeous. There is also a hot tub, sauna and steam shower you can use even if you are not getting any services. Really gorgeous spa. One of the best I've seen at a hotel.

The restaurants were also really superb. Blue (Eric Ripert's restaurant) was pricey but fabulous. We also enjoyed the sushi and the steak at Seven. Seven was gorgeous and the employees there were incredible, especially Cielo (gotta' give her a shout out!) If you get bored with the food there or want to pay a little less, there are great places all over the island. Eats Cafe (a 3 minute walk) was great for breakfast.

I was really looking forward to tennis but I had no one to play in clinics with and I missed cardio tennis because of the rain. I took a lesson one day but you need to take a golf cart over there and waited 20 minutes for someone to take me. Luckily I still arrived on time. Courts were clay and instruction was decent.

If I go back to Grand Cayman, I would definitely stay at the Ritz again.

Room Tip: Definitely get an ocean view room. Otherwise you'll be walking back and forth all day to get to...
  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with family
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5  Thank hhenkind
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 12 December 2013

On Tuesday, Dec. 10, the Ritz Carlton hosted an ear-blasting concert that continued past 11:30 pm. Complaints from guests and guests in nearby hotels and houses flooded in, but the music continued to blast.
For those guests paying more than $1,000 per night to stay here, it's a shocking case of mismanagement and complete disregard for the comfort of paying guests.
Nothing that the Ritz does will negate this. It's unbelievable that a (supposedly) professional hospitality team would arrange such an event.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
14  Thank keenest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 December 2013 via mobile

Typically I like to call out impressive staff members by name in reviews but honestly there were too many overachievers at this site. Beautiful site with pampering - specialists everywhere and fantastic food. We will absolutely return.

Stayed: December 2013, travelled with friends
Thank Shannon D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 December 2013

This was our fifth stay and each time they actrually get better. The hotel is on 7 Mile Beach and has a very large beachfront with full water sports available. The facilities are very nice and the staff gives great service while maintaining a friendly, casual atmosphere. If you get the opportunity try to book a room across the road in the Residence building, where all rooms face the water. If you stay here you don't need a car, as you can easily walk to many restaurants, stores, etc and otehrs can be easily accessed by the public buses or cabs. Each of the 4 restaurants we tried has very good, healthy food, with excellent attention to gluten free and other allergies.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled on business
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Thank joel r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 December 2013

My parents, siblings, spouses and children (11 of us) enjoyed Grand Cayman for Thanksgiving. The Ritz was exceptional. The service was excellent. We have never felt so special while at the same time never feeling like the server is expecting a tip. The use of the spa and fitness center is a must during every visit.
Grand Cayman is expensive. Taxis are expensive. The food at the Ritz was about the same as you'd find off the property and perhaps a little more expensive, but it was still good. Periwinkle for the kids was awesome, but be sure you have a breeze or it's stifling hot and buggy.
The beach service and activities were incredible. The water was ideal. The snorkeling just in front of the hotel with the provided Zyak for the kids was just fabulous.
Grand Cayman can be hot, but we never felt it. We had a wonderful vacation and will definitely go back!

Room Tip: The garden view and resort view rooms (non-Gulf view) are still exceptional locations because it'...
  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Tom W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 December 2013

The problem with the Cayman islands is - there are literally a handful of hotels to stay in. So you don't have much of choice between the Westin and the Ritz. We stayed at both, and the westin was a complete waste of money, might has well spend the extra and stay at the Ritz. It's just a fantastic hotel.
The service is top quality. Everyone is always smiling, and extremely polite. The rooms are fantastic. Clean, spacious, comfortable. The bathrooms are great as well.
We at at periwinkle at the hotel and it was absolutely delicious. They have so many activities for kids in the evenings.
Beach was fabulous. I love their complimentary use of snokeling, paddle boarding, etc, we took advantage of all that fairly well.

The only complaint I would have is the spa. The entire spa facility and decor was great, the actual massage room was however terrible. The massage itself was ok, and definitely overpriced.

Either way - I would come back to this hotel in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Apekm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 December 2013

I think our biggest complaint about the Ritz is the size - it's huge. And with that comes long walks just to get coffee and rather impersonal service. It also means the beach and pool are always overcrowded, often with pampered (bratty) kids. There are a few exceptions to that but, but most staff were too busy to be proactive or personal.

The rooms are ok - nice, but not better than the westin down the road for example. We used points for 2 of the 4 nights and that meant a room with no view (just the road and other hotel to the side). I would have expected them to offer to upgrade for a small fee but they did not.

The pools are ok, clean and well maintained - but the beach side one is often very crowded.
The beach has 4 rows of beach chairs and some cabanas between the pool and the water. It's just too busy with traffic to relax. And the pool/beach attendants like everyone else in the hotel expect lavish tips to do their job.

All of grand cayman is expensive, and the restaurants here are no exception. To get 2 coffees and 2 pastries for breakfast and take to your room or pool, expect to spend $50. (for breakfast, walk north out of the hotel about a block to the "eats cafe" for a bigger breakfast for the same $50 for two). Drinks were expensive, and service in the lobby bar was horrible at least twice of the the three or four times we went there. Blue was very good, at $500 for dinner for 2 with modestly priced bottle of wine.

Valet staff was friendly, front desk was efficient, but the concierge staff generally looked bothered when I asked a question.. and often they didn't know the answer and didn't care to find out (for example - I asked "I see the marathon is going on tomorrow, will that block any roads into town?" they didn't know, didn't care, didn't find out. )

Maid service was good. Our maid introduced herself on the first day and was always smiling and friendly when we walked past her in the hall. Rooms are clean and well stocked.

We have stayed in lovely hotels around the world and are more than willing to pay for a good experience and good service. Unfortuatnely this hotel offers neither. it's just a big hotel with above average offering and mediocre service for a 5 star price.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank dottie dog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman

Address: West Bay Road, Seven Mile Beach KY1-1209, Grand Cayman
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Cayman Islands > Grand Cayman > Seven Mile Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
#1 Romantic Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
#2 Family Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
#2 Spa Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
#3 Luxury Hotel in Seven Mile Beach
Price Range: £354 - £1,281 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman 5*
Number of rooms: 365
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, a luxury two-tower resort on Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands. Here, sparkling blue waters blend seamlessly with the sand and sky to create your perfect Caribbean oasis. Located on an archipelago of three picturesque islands, our Cayman Islands resort hotel offers a breathtaking location unlike anywhere else on earth. From the white sands of Seven Mile Beach to world-renowned restaurants including Blue, by renowned seafood chef Eric Ripert, The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman luxury resort offers guests an unforgettable escape from the everyday. With a resort side including resort and garden view rooms and an ocean side for ocean view rooms the property runs from sound to sea. Residential towers are located on the ocean side. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman Hotel Seven Mile Beach
Grand Cayman Ritz Carlton
Ritz Seven Mile Beach
Seven Mile Beach Ritz-Carlton
The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman Cayman Islands

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