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“Misrepresented”

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Coral Harbour Beach House and Villas
Ranked #26 of 37 Hotels in Nassau
Hertfordshire
Level Contributor
91 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Misrepresented”
Reviewed 9 June 2013

This is the most difficult review I've ever written as some aspects of the Coral Harbour are very good whilst others are disappointing, hence the overall rating I've given as being average.
I will begin with some of the things that I think other people should be aware of prior to booking this accommodation, and then offer some positives later in the review.

My husband and I stayed here for a few nights in early March and our main issue with the accommodation is the way in which it is misrepresented in terms of the amenities nearby. There are none! In the Coral Harbour beach house and villas leaflet that I picked up in reception, and which includes various claims also made on the Web, it states that "Coral Harbour abounds in fun and adventurous things to do...enjoy by bicycle or on foot...scuba diving and snorkelling 5 mins away, horse back riding on the beach, guided kayak tours, kayak rentals, nature walks, bird watching tours, biking, tennis". It also claims that it is "only minutes from our new shopping centre with grocery store offering all the supplies you'll need".

I envisaged my husband (who is very active and not much of 'laying on the beach' person) being able to wander down the road and get involved in water sports while I laid on the beach reading.

Upon arrival we got a fairly expensive taxi from the airport to Coral Harbour and were surprised at how isolated the property is. We had not arranged a car rental as we were under the impression that there was a range of amenities in the vicinity.

Having checked in we thought we would go to the grocery store to purchase some snacks and beers to enjoy on our balcony overlooking the ocean, and some supplies to cook on the barbecue that was allegedly available with the 'one-bedroom villa' (more on this later) we had booked. It was a 20 minute walk to the store, which offered a fairly limited selection of provisions and did not sell alcohol.

We always prefer to book self-catering accommodation as it allows flexibility over meals. However, far from the "well-equipped kitchenette" described online, there was actually next to nothing in the way of kitchenware. My husband took photographs of the virtually empty cupboards and I will try to upload these later. However, aside from a few plates, cups, glasses, a couple of knives and forks, and one pan, there was nothing.
In addition, when we enquired about the barbecue, we were told there was a communal barbecue that we could use near the restaurant but it clearly was not something that the owners expected guests to do.
Consequently, with the limitations of both the grocery store and the catering facilities, self-catering was not an option and this meant that all meals had to be purchased from the on-site restaurant.

There appeared to be at least three different menus, with the same dishes listed on each at different prices. We ordered a couple of dishes more than once and received very different meals each time! That said, the food was mostly good, especially the cracked conch. We did have to wait nearly two hours one evening for our meal, and I suspect that the prices were set on the basis of guests having no other dining option.

in terms of the accommodation, when booking I had originally looked at the 'king studio with kitchenette' but as the price quoted for the 'one-bedroom villa' for our five night stay was only £42 more, and the description of this sounded much better, I decided to opt for that instead.
The description, which I printed out when booking, was as follows: Featuring sea views, this air-conditioned villa offers 1 king bedroom, a living area with flat-screen cable TV and a well-equipped kitchenette...It also has a sofa bed and a safe. Villa Facilities: balcony, sea view, garden view, TV, radio, air conditioning, iron, desk, seating area, fan, beds, carpeted floor, private entrance, sofa, soundproofing, tiled/marble floor, hairdryer, toilet, bathroom, bath or shower, additional toilet, tea/coffee maker, refrigerator, microwave, kitchen, dining area, stove, toaster, barbecue, wake up service/alarm clock.
Very few of these facilities were atually provided. When I showed the staff the printed description they said it was incorrect and the 'one-bedroom villa' has either a balcony (if upstairs) or a seating area with sofabed (if downstairs). The picture of the villa shows two storeys, and together with the description is somewhat misleading. Interestingly, the picture that accompanies the description of the 'king studio with kitchenette' was clearly taken in the bedroom area of the accommodation in which we stayed. Despite pointing this out we were still charged the price of the villa.
The bed was comfortable but accommodation overall is fairly basic. The TV did not work but since we don't tend to watch much television anyway, least of all whilst on holiday, this was not really a problem. In addition, you get what you pay for and, despite being charged for an accommodation type that we did not stay in, this is a cheap place to stay on the island.
There is a service charge of $19.50 per day, and the room was cleaned thoroughly with all bedding being changed every day except for the day before we were leaving. That night I got bitten all over my feet and ankles by something in the bed.

As the property is so isolated it was difficult to pursue any complaints as we had made an arrangement with the owner's son to be taken to the airport on our departure day (for a price, of course) and we did not want to end up being unable to get to the airport.

In addition, we were told when settling the bill that there was an extra 6% charge for paying by card (credit or debit). There was no sign displayed anywhere that indicated this or we would have gone to the bank when we visited downtown Nassau. Since there are no amenities nearby, and hence no way of withdrawing cash, this seems like yet another way of taking advantage of a 'captive audience'.

I realise that it may sound as though we did not enjoy our stay but in fact we had a very nice time. The beach was deserted most of the time, offering the scene that is so often pictured in holiday brochures but seldom found, and the lack of amenities was actually very relaxing. The sea is warm and clear so that it is possible to see many starfish on the ocean bed. The decking area overlooking the sea is lovely, and the staff are pleasant. The bar was good fun, with a friendly crowd of locals and ex-pats, and the barman Ricky is great.
The Bahamians are delightful and we met several people who were really helpful and kind, including Lutz who saw us walking back from the grocery store with heavy bags and gave us a lift despite it being out of his way.
The pool table has seen better days, and to call the room it is in a 'games room' is a bit of an exaggeration, but it was fun to play a few games of pool with some of the locals.

We caught a bus to downtown Nassau one day and actually returned to Coral Harbour immensely pleased to be staying there instead, away from the crowds and in a peaceful environment. The bus was a great experience, and we had lunch in a lovely Greek restaurant in downtown Nassau which we would highly recommend.

Overall, our stay was relaxing but I think others should be aware of the ways in which this accommodation is misrepresented.
We would not go back because of the misrepresentations but for a tranquil short break on a budget, as long as you know what to expect and what not to expect, I would recommend the Coral Harbour. Just don't get duped into booking a one-bedroom villa, when in fact you'll be paying for a villa but staying in a king studio, and don't expect to be making use of the kitchenette or barbecue!

Room Tip: The location is great if you want to completely get away from it all or for those who are island-hop...
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Alison C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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98 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Paris, France
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 May 2013

We stayed at Coral Beach for a night and we really enjoyed it. Warmly welcomed by Jay on our arrival, we felt very comfortable in this place. Our room was clean and cozy with a nice terrace viewing the beach. Breakfast was fine, enjoyed the waffles.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank lubval
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Poland, Maine
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2013

We recently took a trip to the Bahamas, and due to bad weather, had to spend an unexpected night in Nassau. The Coral Harbour was extremely accommodating, we arrived late in the evening after not being able to get a flight and the host was very kind to us. We were only there for a short time, but felt very welcomed. They offer a free breakfast where you can make your own waffles, so that was a good way to start the day. They have a nice beach area and it's in a peaceful part of the island...

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Beebeal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Copenhagen
Level Contributor
53 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 April 2013

Nice, calm and easy place. We almost had the beach to ourselves for several days. The locals comes to get a beer in the evenings. Everybody´s friendly and easy to talk to. The food is good but the service pretty slow. The breakfast is terrible (with scandinavian standards)! Waffles with syrup, white toastbread with jam and cereals with 5% milk... The coffee machine was broken all week...
There´s a local store "Discount meat" about 30 min walk up the road. It´s a christian store! They play christian music and they DON´T sell beers (or any alcohol). To go to another store you´ll need a car. There´s no busses so you can´t leave Coral Harbour.
My best advice is to rent a car for a few days. Order a taxi from/to the airport to save money (see my taxi Bahamas review) and bring beers (after a week it gets expencive ordering from the bar).
This is the closest hotel to the airport.

Room Tip: We stayed in 33. Closest to the beach on the top. It was just perfect and the bed is amazing!!!
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Carolinuss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Akron, Ohio
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 March 2013

Nice, family run, peaceful beach house. If you want a peaceful retreat away from the commercialism and craziness of the Nassau/Paradise Island area this is it. Although you need to rent a car or take taxis when you want to go anywhere else on the island it is well worth it. John, the resort recommended taxi service, was professional and friendly...and he accepts credit cards. We spent many hours either kicking back in the hammock or taking long walks on the beach (I have never seen so many starfish in one place). This is the kind of place that gives you the feel for the real Bahamas as you mingle with the family that runs the resort, many locals that frequent the restaurant and bar, and fellow travelers from around the world. This is not a posh resort and if that is what you are looking for you are in the wrong place. It is instead the quaint beach cottage that you return to year after year. The family was very accommodating and had lots of helpful advice. The food from the restaurant was very good and the free continental breakfast was more than we anticipated (waffles, hard boiled eggs, cereal, bagels, fruit, etc.)

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank pand1818
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 March 2013

We loved our stay, it was a lovely retreat away from Nassau. The bar was friendly and the food was great. The local fish was incredible, hats off to the chef! It's just a stones throw from the beach.

A car would be useful if you are pushed for time, but we took local buses and hitched rides. The Bahamians were incredibly friendly and the scenery was fantastic.

We can't wait to come and visit again.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank hayles34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Level Contributor
68 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 March 2013

Went there for few days, for relaxing. I first booked it because I was on a budget for accommodation and it was the cheaper ( Stoped in Bahamas on my way to go to Cuba from USA).
It was great!! You are far away from everything, so you can definetely disconnect!!
This is not a resort with lots of kids around playing and screaming!
The staff is nice and welcoming.
Ricky the bar-tender is helpful and good fun!!
The breakfast was not the best one, but you can eat properly. It was offered baggel, boiled eggs, breads, waffles, muffins, coffee, juices, cereals. All in self-service. It was much appreciated for me!!
The beach is not the beach in Bahamas but it is quiet, not many people. We were the only one for most of the time. It is still nice.
The food is nice, ask what you want you can have it! It is made on the moment, it takes its time and you won't be disappointed!!! The bar has a good atmosphere with local people coming at night for a few drinks so you can have good chats with them!!
The room was good enough for us! The water was not working when we arrived, told them and put the pomp on and all was good. A/C was working welll, comfy bed, terrace, wi-fi was working well.
To me, it was a good place to relax and disconnect from everything. You can be satisfied by this place if you are a tourist who like to travel simply and enjoy himself.
Will I go back? Yes.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Lucie-Michelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Coral Harbour Beach House and Villas

Property: Coral Harbour Beach House and Villas
Address: Coral Harbour Road PO Box N-9750, Nassau, New Providence Island
Region: Caribbean > Bahamas > New Providence Island > Nassau
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#12 On the Beach Hotel in Nassau
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Coral Harbour Beach House and Villas 2.5*
Number of rooms: 16
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Also Known As:
Coral Harbour Beach House And Villas Hotel Nassau
Coral Harbour Beach Hotel
Coral Harbour Beach House And Villas Bahamas/Nassau

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