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“Relaxing in paradise”

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The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection
Ranked #6 of 14 Hotels in Paradise Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 11 September 2013

Stayed at The Reef August 31-September 4th. It was a dream vacation and we had no issues. Our bellman said the hotel was only at 40% capacity and you could tell. It was like we had the entire place to ourselves. We loved it! Here is a breakdown by category of our stay.

We knew food was expensive at Atlantis so we used FoodStore2go.com and had groceries delivered. Service was great and our order was delivered 15 minutes after we arrived. We ate at Carmine's the first night so we would have leftovers. Service was great and our bill for 2 people including a long island iced tea was $60. We had so many leftovers we ended up throwing some away when we left 4 days later! We also ate at Johnny Rockets for lunch and it was good. Service was slow but it was raining outside so we were in no rush.

For all of the hype it gets I was a little disappointed. Wish there were more slides and not just a ton of pools. The current is an awesome ride if you like rides with inter-tubes. My husband lost his sunglasses so be sure to have straps if you wear them on the ride. Also be sure to wear water shoes. The pavement was so hot my feet were burned and I could barely walk after only 2 hours of being there.

We checked in at 3:00 and it was very smooth. Room was great, just like the pictures. It was like staying at a very nice hotel in Vegas. You just have paradise outside your door! Housekeeping was great. They even washed our dishes and put them away for us.

The place was practically empty so you had your pick of chairs anywhere you wanted. The water was crystal clear and very calm. Staff was very friendly and helped us get our chairs set up. Having the private beach for Reef/Cove members was awesome. Such a difference from the hustle and bustle of the waterpark.

Dolphin Cay-
My husband did the deep water dolphin swim and enjoyed it. He said for the price he was happy but would not do it again. He was hoping to get to interact with the dolphins more. I observed from a small patio out front. They have a beach there but you have to pay $15 to go on it. Not worth it to us. I got good pictures and video from where I was sitting.

Wifi is $20/day which we were not going to pay. The whole point of vacation is to leave the outside world at home! However if you need it for a few minutes you can go to the Atlantis Library. It is located in the Coral Towers and each person gets 20 minutes free per day. Perfect for a quick email to the grandparents at home to check on the kids.

We used Dan Knowles tours to get to and from the airport. My only complaint is that there is no sign directing you to the bus. They are located outside the airport by baggage claim. The service was good and we only waited 5 minutes. They picked us up right on time to go back to the airport.

Overall it was a great vacation for us. We are low key people and the Reef was the perfect place for us. You are far away from the crowds of Atlantis but just a short shuttle ride away if you want to explore the place. We are already planning next years trip!

Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
4  Thank RamRumble
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 5 September 2013

Very much liked absence of crowds at the Reef. Private beach and pool with no need to hunt for a beach chair. The room was comfortable enough with added convenience of a partial kitchen allowing for an occasional home cooked breakfast or lunch. A small shopping plaza is a short walking distance from the resort. A great alternative to the Cove if you are traveling with children under 18.
Very friendly staff overall. Especially would like to mention Chris M at the front desk who was exceptional at resolving minor issues and went above and beyond our expectations of great service. He definitely added the 5th star to this review.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank ViktorT393
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 September 2013

Family of 5 in 2 adjoining rooms.
Have been to Atlantis before. This hotel is ok but not worth the money. Better than Beach or Coral Towers but still not that special.
On ninth floor with views of the pool, sea and The Cove.
Long walk to Royal Towers/the water slides which we ended up doing each time because the bus service was too unreliable.
Rooms are basic with inconsistent maid/turn down service. There is nowhere to hang your towels in the bathrooms. They do not have a system of recording issues and tracking whether they have been resolved; someone just tells someone else who may or may not do anything. Our mini bar was missing which caused them great amusement however we had to ask several times for this to be rectified. It appeared but was locked; after several more requests to unlock we gave up - you have to accept they do not really care about your experience.
The water slides are ok but not a patch on Wild Wadi in Dubai for example.
The dolphin experience was good. The snuba (sic) was ok but very poorly run/organised; way too much time spent before getting on the boat.
The golf at the Ocean Course was a good experience and the Michael Buble concert was ok.
None of these things (apart from the golf) were worth the money but you know and accept that before you go.
Would be in no hurry to return.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank CrispyJack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 September 2013

Had a nice time and certainly liked the hotel but not as much as the cove -- was nice that the hotel was not crowded and brought my 8 year old which I found this hotel to be more family oriented but would have liked access to the Cain pool so I could have gambled close by. Still get sticker shock on the amount of money they charge for food - its obscene at atlantis and finally learned the meal plan is no bargain. Would certainly consider staying here or the cove next time as you avoid the hustle and bustle and it is much more serene and the pool has nicer chairs and is not noisy.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Sabra8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 September 2013

Just stayed at the Reef. We usually stay at the cove but they were sold out. (thanks Michael Buble) We had a 2 bedroom deluxe oceanfront room that was beautiful and the ocean view was unbelievable! This was our fifth trip to the island and as usual the employees were fantastic couldn't do more for you, always accommodating and very polite. Never came upon a rude employee, rude guest yes, employee - never.

The only bad thing I have to say about the Reef is the bed UGH! It felt like I was trampled by a herd of cattle. My body hurt from head to toe. Or maybe it was just one to many rides on the water slides. I don't know. I still love the place . We will be back.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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1  Thank banana1255
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 September 2013

For what we paid for a deluxe ocean view room I expected a lot more. If you love mass crowds, even in September, rude employees who could care less; especially the ones working the towel and sundry areas, then this place is for you! If you want to relax on vacation go anywhere else but here. Even at the reef, which I will say was away from the utter madness of the royal tower it was still just too many people. Next time we will be staying in a smaller resort where you can actually relax and be away from crowds.

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
4  Thank Shawn9555
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 August 2013

I always read trip advisor before booking a trip and have never posted my own review. This is a great service for travellers to share!

Second time to the Reef and this time I found the service for the most part, to be lacking. There was a woman who works the front desk and Reef sales centre who was EXTREMELY rude and condescending (wish i got her name!) actually told her " you should not speak to a paying customer like this", basically called me a liar. Long story short, I was asking about the attendant who works the beach area always reserving the front beach chairs at 7am and how I go about doing that. She told me they don't do that and i must be mistaken, cut me off while i was speaking and I told her I've watched him do it for 3 days!" If you are willing to get up early, find the attendant, tip him, they will make up beach chairs in the 1st row. I counted one morning on a walk and there were 48 "reserved" by 8am.. I got up early once to do it and that was it.

Check in was great. While waiting in line, we were served "coffee shots!" Told them it was our second time and if we could get a room higher up. They had us on the 7th floor but after asking, we moved to the 18th floor. So worth it. View is amazing. Pay your maid service every day and you will be glad you did! Always left a tip for her and we would always find extra towels, bottled water etc. We had no hot water for 2 days but when I called they sent someone up right away both times.

Restaurants were a hit and miss. Best meal was Seafire with their service being great and food was perfect. Worst this time around was Mesa which was disappointing since we loved it so much last time. My son ordered penne pasta and that's what came, a bowl of noodles, no sauce, nothing. When I mentioned it the server he said "well thats what you ordered" and that was it. The menu says "Mac and cheese penne pasta" so my 9 yr old only said penne pasta. I told him sorry he read it wrong, can you just bring the sauce on the side so he can pour it over - no he couldn't. Did they have any sauce he could add? No they didn't. So I asked for parmasean cheese to at least put on top. That was even a hassle to get. Yes all restaurants are pricey so the meal plan can be worth it.

Ask for your room charges every few days to keep track of everything since its a cash less resort - room charges are easy to add up. Check bill closely! They didn't take 4 meals off that we're included in the meal plan and charged me. This happened our last visit as well and I didn't notice till we were home already and had to call - it was a hassle and was placed on hold numerous times before I got it handled and with no 800 number, long distance charges apply.

Sometimes the added 15% gratuity is not worth it when you get shotty service. There was a server at Mosiac who was so good (sorry wrote his name down but lost the paper!) that we paid more then the already 15% but that was the only time. I work in the service industry and have for over 25 yrs and when you run into people that don't care sine they get a top already, or don't know what service is, it can be annoying when you know how much $$ you are paying. I don't mind paying a extra for great service. They have to go to Atlantis University so "revisiting" could be beneficial to some. When Bahar Mar opens, you will see some people switch. They are striving to be to top tier of the service industry in Bahamas. You may also see some price reductions.

The ladies that the sundries shop could care less that you are standing there waiting to pay, I had to wait till they finished their conversation about that nights plans before they made eye contact with me. I was the only one standing there and the only one in the shop. Same thing at the towel hut. One day we wanted to buy a pool toy and were waiting what seemed like forever till my son politely said " excuse me, I want to pay for this now" while they were trying to figure something out, from what i could gather it was about a schdeule change. There were 3 of them. Then no one knew the price of the toy and that was forever to figure it out.

We booked the reef again since we had the best time, service and experience last time. The up keep with dirty glasses, food dishes, band aids in pool , dirty towels, trash, was not being picked up as frequently as it should be. Yes travellers shouldn't even leave crap for them but lets face it, some do. There was a broken glass for 2 days in the path way from the reef to the cove before it was removed.

Starbucks - my son wanted an apple and it was $3.50, he had $3.48 and they wouldn't give it to him being 2 cents short, even when he said he would go and get the pennies from me.

The shark tunnel - I would advise Atlantis to train the tour guides better. The tour guide said it was a sword fish and its clearly a saw shark and told us we are wrong. Look up pictures and you can clearly tell the difference, not to mention we are "shark enthusiasts" and have probably every shark book know to man!

Now some great experiences - Atlantis speedway, all the attendants are amazing! So geared towards kids and high energy. The lady who helped my son build his race car was so GREAT that we tipped her. Behind the myth tour, worth it and informative, guide was so good and very friendly. Pay and do the upgraded tour and you can go visit the fish nursery- got to pet baby sharks and baby sting rays! Kids club - they were amazing the one day my son went. We went the day prior and wanted a tour to see if he would be ok with it. I was told sorry no parents allowed during a session but my son can come and get a personalized tour - made him feel so important! The attendant was so great with him.

The beach is clean, water perfect and some really great clear spots to snorkel for young ones.

The door men (& woman!) at the reef were great and friendly and always giving you tips on where to go etc. didn't matter if it was 10 am or midnight, they were still friendly and opening doors for you.

If you want to stay away from the craziness of the royal towers crowds, book reef or cove so you can have a retreat when you want some R&R just know that service is not consistent. The ones who are fantastic with their service can get lost among the crappy ones. Try the water slides etc either 1st thing in the morning or after 4 so the mass crowds of cruise ship passengers are gone and wait times are less.

It's a great place for kids with tons to do and will I go back? Most likely but will try the Cove next time. I know you cant be 100% happy with every trip, hoping that this go round was a fluke with the service

Room Tip: Ocean front - Ask for a floor higher up to enjoy the fantastic views. Tip your maid- They often get...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank T S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection

Address: 1 Casino Drive, New Providence Island
Region: Caribbean > Bahamas > New Providence Island > Paradise Island
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Paradise Island
#2 Family Hotel in Paradise Island
#2 Casino Hotel in Paradise Island
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Paradise Island
#4 Spa Hotel in Paradise Island
#5 Luxury Hotel in Paradise Island
Price Range: £329 - £671 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection 4.5*
Number of rooms: 497
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located directly on Paradise Beach, guests of The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection enjoy miles of white sand and ocean in their backyard with all the wonder and excitement of Atlantis on their front doorstep. Our Bahamas resort hotel features studios, one and two bedroom suites that offer all the conveniences of home with a full kitchen or kitchen area complete with linens, cookware, table settings, refrigerator and private balconies with water views. Guests of The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection enjoy a semi-private pool, shared only with The Cove Atlantis, Autograph Collection and a Starbucks lounge. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Reef Atlantis Hotel Paradise Island
Reef Atlantis Paradise Island
The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection Bahamas/Paradise Island

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