Looking at all the reviews of Orange Hill, I didn't quite know what to expect when I visited for 5 days with my family. Some were glowing, some were terrible. And the truth is, they're both correct.
We stayed in the upstairs apartment, which is a good size and has a great balcony to sit on and watch the sun go down over the lovely azure sea across the road. But the two king beds were ancient and tatty, one had worn springs that were so noisy it sounded like a 'gamalan' orchestra had entered the room every time you rolled over. And even though cleaning was regular, it all felt a bit grubby. And although it had a large kitchen area, there was no air con in it, so it was too hot to use so you'd find yourself scampering through it from bathroom to bedroom and back.
It had a pool, but this was unhealthily, cloudy green when we were there, so we never used it. Instead we went across the road to the beach which is lovely and generally quiet, but it has a lot of broken glass on it (some of which had been there long enough to have the sharp edges worn off). The sea was wonderful, warm, clear, and with a reef close to the shore with fantastic snorkelling. We saw barracuda, sun fish, puffer fish, conch, as well as most of the cast of 'Finding Nemo.'
The food in the hotel wasn't great, but it was certainly plentiful and reasonably priced. And there weren't many other places to go (The nearest, 'Traveller Rest', about 20 mins walk, was a disappointment, flacid, tasteless food, poor service and expensive. 'Compass point' a quirky, multi-coloured hotel complex, about 10 mins further on had good food but was very expensive.)
Service swung wildly from ultra helpful and friendly, to disinterested and downright rude. They will run you down to the local supermarket to shop in the morning, for free. And they also dropped us off at the airport, for free. But the locals rarely smiled and if you asked for anything that involved extra effort, it seemed to exasperate them.
You can catch a no. 10 bus outside (just flag them down) and go to Nassau for just $1.25. But there's not a lot to see; lots of huge cruise ships and hugely unfriendly locals. And just outside the town is Cable Beach, where all the unattractive, big hotels squat...unattractively.
Definite plus points for Orange Hill for its location; 5 mins from the airport (yet not really bothered by the noise) and last pick up and first drop off for Stuart Cove's bus (fab. diving, try the Shark Adventure, an amazing hoot!). And it is really quiet (although one time we had an incredibly noisy party going on to the early hours in the apartment below.)
The bar was great too, with some real characters and an honesty scheme, where you are trusted to sign for the beer you drink. Although smoking was allowed.
And there was free internet for customers, but you had to be quick because it was absolutely infested with mosquitos.
The grounds were lovely, well tended, with banana plants, and avocado and lime trees and coconut palms. No down side to that.
Just to finally illustrate the almost schizophrenic nature of the place, we booked a final night and late check out day and the owner promised us a room with a balcony to enjoy the view for our last Bahamian hours. When we arrived late on the night, we'd been put in the bottom apartment (where the party had been) which has no balcony, was full of mosquitos and really dark, dinghy and grubby (avoid this apartment!). It also had the noisiest air con unit I have ever heard, frequently winding itself up to sound like a rescue helicopter hovering outside the room.
When we grumbled about it to the night manager, he said nothing could be done. One sleepless night later, I spoke to Brendan the manager and he moved us into one of the front two cottages for the day, with magnificent views. (These are the newest properties and very nice for couples to stay in.)
So there you go, one thing it certainly wasn't was boring. And given the price and if i could stay in the cottages, I probably would again.....or maybe I wouldn't.
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Travel Republic (UK), TripOnline SA, getaroom.com, Ebookers, Evoline ltd, HotelsClick, HotelQuickly, 5viajes2012 S.L. and Cancelon so you can book your Orange Hill Beach Inn 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:
- Orange Hill Beach Hotel Nassau
- Orange Hill Beach Nassau
- Orange Hill Beach Inn Bahamas/Nassau