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Reviewed 26 January 2014

We have been to Grand Cayman in the past, and going into this trip I knew East End was preferable. Our expectations from The Reef Resort were not very high; we wanted a semi-private beach, minimal amenities, and a good environment for relaxation.
Upon arrival to the resort, we attempted to check in and were told to wait, as our room was not yet clean. Thus, we immediately went out to the beach and tried to relax, only to find there were no chairs available! Furthermore, the chairs at this resort are very uncomfortable (even for us, and we are not particularly tall or large). Two and a half hours later, we were able to check in completely and move into our room. I must say, the room was simple, clean, and very usable-- only complaint I would have is the very, very small bathtub.... The Reef Resort also makes a practice of charging for little services; for example, the wifi was $3 CI for only 30 minutes. Now, I am not a person who gets on the internet all of vacation, but sometimes it is nice to check up on email or correspond briefly.
With regard to the overall atmosphere of the resort I was extremely disappointed; this is the primary reason for the poor review. Every morning, a backhoe drove up the beach (slowly), following people raking turtle grass and other debris up. Not only was this practice time consuming, ruining the ambiance of the beach, but it was also detrimental to local air quality. Overall, the beach was clean for an hour or maybe a few, eventually returning to the prior smattering of turtle grass and other debris, making this a very wasteful and annoying process each morning! If I wanted to watch a backhoe in use, I would have just gone to a farm for the holidays. This is something I do not expect to see at a resort!!!
To others reading this, I would suggest Compass Point Dive Resort, just down the road from The Reef, particularly if you are diving. It is a little more private and feels more friendly. However, it is a little more expensive, but worth it for the free wifi, gorgeous and low-traffic beach, and room locks that don't require you to carry keys!

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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13  Thank Hallie T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JakeMorgan72, Head Concierge at Wyndham Reef Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 29 January 2014

Thanks for taking the time to leave a review. You have made some good points so we appreciate the opportunity for us to clarify some of them.

Our check in starts at 4pm however we work very hard to get rooms deep cleaned and turned around as quickly as possible. If your room is not ready immediately upon your arrival (before 4pm) we would ask for a little patience. Our goal is to ensure that each room is fully ready for the new guest having been through a thorough deep clean. As you found, should a guest experience a short wait we are happy to provide a complimentary rum punch for you to enjoy on the beach.

Regards our internet, one thing that has changed dramatically over the last few years is our guest’s demand for high speed, quality internet. A lot of our guests must have a dependable internet access for home commitments so a decision was made to invest in a completely new system. As a result we now have some of the fastest speeds and most reliable internet anywhere on island. Our feedback consistently shows that guests are happy to pay a small fee for outstanding service.

I’m sorry about the backhoe, as you saw we have the longest beach of any resort in The Cayman Islands and it is quite literally the ‘jewel’ in our crown. With such a large beach leaving it not cleaned for even a day is not an option for us and would not be acceptable for our guests. We do have a specialized machine for just this purpose however it is currently in repair and an alternative was needed. Our maintenance team work hard from 7am to complete this task so rarely is it still on the beach by 9am. We are however working hard to get the right machine back quickly.

The other resort that you mentioned has some great facilities, however they do not experience the issues we do because their property is roadside and does not have a beach.

Thanks again for the feedback and happy holidays for the future

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Reviewed 22 January 2014

Located on the east end of the island, this resort is adjacent to the Morritts resort, and they share a long sandy beach. Our family of seven stayed in two one bedroom units and one studio unit for two nights in early January. The one bedroom units were well appointed with a fully equipped kitchen, two cable TV's, a king size bed in the bedroom, and two pull down murphy beds in the living area. The studio has a king size bed and a kitchenette with refrigerator & microwave. All units are beachfront with patios or balconies over the beach. As mentioned in another review, I also had an issue with figuring out how to make the shower work. The gold ring at the end of the tub faucet must be pulled down to operate the shower head. Finally figured it out after my tub bath and before my wife's shower. At check-in, each adult is provided with a coupon for a free rum punch at the Tiki bar. Each one bedroom unit shared a balcony with the adjacent studio apartment, and there is a connecting door between them if both are rented by the same group. The beach is sandy and clean but, in most areas, rocky just after entering the water. However, there is good snorkeling in places, especially near the pier. While we were there, the beach was never very crowded though we were rarely alone. There are two pool areas, one with three separate sections including a hot tub. The tiki bar is convenient and serves very good drinks at relatively reasonable prices for Cayman. The mudslides there were the best of all sampled on the island! The bartender there was very helpful with area information and recommendations for restaurants, etc. The menu at the bar is a bit limited but cheaper than the upstairs restaurant where a full menu is provided.

A car is a necessity if you plan to do anything other than hang out at the Reef or in that general area. There is some shopping across the street with a small grocery, a liquor store for alcohol, and a gift shop or two. The Reef can arrange tours around the island as well as stingray city tours, though you may do better arranging those on your own.

All in all, I'd recommend The Reef as a good place to avoid the crowds of Seven Mile Beach area.

Room Tip: All rooms are beach front - units near the center are closest to the office, bar, & restaurant.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank NationalParkHiker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JakeMorgan72, Head Concierge at Wyndham Reef Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 29 January 2014

Thanks for taking the time to leave a review about your recent vacation. It sounds like the whole family had a great time and you’ve left some useful pointers for future guests.

Your right about the faucets, it can be a little confusing if you have not seen them before so we are now in the process of playing cards in every room to advise guests how these work, thanks for the feedback.

We’re also glad that (among other things) you enjoyed your time at the beach bar, the guys there take great pride in their work and I’ll be sure to pass on your comments about their famous mud slides. As you found out the view from the bar is quite spectacular so a great place to kick back and relax.

You are spot on when you say that we are the best place to avoid the crowds on seven mile beach and I would add only this. If the thought of walking for miles down beautiful, deserted beaches is not for you then you may be happier in town.........but if not, we'd love to welcome you to theReef resort

Thanks again for the review and happy holidays for the future!

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Reviewed 22 January 2014

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at The Reef Resort in October, 2013. All rooms are facing the beach, and we loved the 1st floor and walking 20 steps to our beach chairs. Rooms were super comfortable, including the bed. New furnishings. Jetted tub! Terrific wi-fi for a fee, even accessible on the beach. Nice snorkeling if the winds are favorable. Not a swimming beach but good for snorkeling which we love. Walk past the dock at the Morritz and snorkle back to the Reef with the current. Quiet setting. 45 min drive to George Town. Rental cars are very affordable on the island, not like Mexico. Staff arranged for an early trip to stingray city with a small group of 10 and a snorkel at the reef. Very special! Restaurant was great, but pricy like everything on the island. Grocery store across the street. We stayed the second week next door at the Morritz and it was AWEFUL! Maybe if you own there you would get a good room, but the visitors are stuffed in little rooms that are noisy and outdated. Loved the Reef Resort!

Room Tip: 3 floors but there are elevators. Loved the ground floor.
  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Larry N LaNell G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JakeMorgan72, Head Concierge at Wyndham Reef Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 29 January 2014

Thanks for taking the time to leave a review, its clear that you had a great time and we’re all really pleased you enjoyed yourself.

You’ve left some great pointers for future guests which I can only endorse. As you will recall rental vehicles can be arranged on site for a very reasonable price with the additional benefit of either collecting or returning the vehicle directly from the resort. You can contact our concierge team in advance for full details of this facility.

Regards our WiFi service, over the last few years our guests have advised us that fast, secure, easily accessible WiFi is imperative to allow them to fully relax and enjoy their vacation. Our new internet system offers some of the fastest download speeds anywhere on island and our feedback repeatedly shows that guests are happy to pay a small fee for outstanding service.

Thanks again for leaving a review and happy holidays for the future!

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Reviewed 17 January 2014

We stayed at the the Reef for five nights in January 2014. We booked the diving package that included three two-tank dives with Tortuga Divers (located at the Morrit's resort, just a very short walk from the Reef). The Reef's staff was very helpful even before we arrived, with booking a car service from the airport. Our room (studio unit) was a good size, with a small kitchen unit that included a microwave, refrigerator and coffee maker. There is a grocery store across the street from the hotel and we made breakfast and lunch every day and two dinners in the room.
The Reef offers daily activities on location and elsewhere. Cathy Richardson, the Reef's concierge, was fantastic. Cathy was friendly and helpful. She helped us with information on different activities and tours, booked our tour to the botanical gardens (recommended!), answered all of our questions (such as - what's on the menu for the welcome BBQ?) and requests (fit activities with our busy diving scheduled) and even helped with identifying birds and butterflies.
We only stayed for five days... wish we could have stayed longer!

Room Tip: All the rooms face the ocean. There are two or three floors - the view from the upper floor is better, but being on the first floor is convenient, especially when carrying diving gear.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Liti H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JakeMorgan72, Head Concierge at Wyndham Reef Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 25 January 2014

Thanks for taking the time to leave a review about your experiences here at the Reef. You clearly had a great time and we’re grateful that you chose to stay with us. The diving here on the East End is considered to be the very best Cayman has to offer with some of the most pristine coral reefs anywhere in the Caribbean. With wall drops exceeding a mile in some places we also have some of the most spectacular under water scenery anywhere on earth.

The dive boats leave from a dock which is located no more than a 5 min walk down our beach so it’s incredibly convenient for reef guests. In addition to diving Grand Cayman has a lot more to offer and our friendly, full time concierge team are always more than happy to ensure you get the very best out of your well earned vacation.

Cathy says hi and she would love to see you back again. I think the only thing you missed seeing this trip was the famous Grand Cayman Parrots, but as you know that will have to wait for your next visit, because along with our blue iguanas they are found no where else on earth!

Thanks again for the review and happy holidays for the future

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Reviewed 15 January 2014

Reviews read on TA are pretty much what we experienced. Room was clean, beach was nice, and overally very quiet. We were there after Christmas, and for the first couple of days, there was a bit of "beach chair hoarding" on the beach. We just walked down to the other end and were able to find chairs. No coffee in the rooms, but they provided filters. We purchased a can of coffee across the street and passed on what we had left of the coffee and some other misc items to our neighbors before we left. We also had a family pass on a bag of food they had not finished (bagels, a few beers, etc). This is the kind of place where you feel comfortable doing something like that - you see a lot of the same people every day, since a smaller resort.

One room tip I will give - there is a gold ring around the bottom of tub faucet - you have to pull that down to get the shower head to work. I have never experienced that feature, and after my whole family could not figure it out, I finally called the front desk (who indicated they get that question all the time).

Mattress in the bedroom was very soft and the Murphy bed mattresses were very hard. Just something to note, if you have issues with that kind of thing. Our room did not get cleaned one of the days we were there, but after a call to front desk, we were promptly delivered clean towels, so no big deal.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank wego810
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
JakeMorgan72, Head Concierge at Wyndham Reef Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 25 January 2014

Thanks for taking the time to leave a review, we sincerely appreciate all feedback and it’s great to hear you enjoyed your vacation.

Christmas is by far our busiest period of the year and even then I’m a little surprised you had to look for a beach chair! We enjoy the longest beach of any resort on island so such a situation is rare. I’m glad it was easily resolved and we would like to remind all future guests to simply talk with a staff member if they need something, we will resolve it.

Your right about the ring on the tub faucet, it is an unusual feature (I don’t think they use these in the USA) so we are currently placing cards in guest rooms explaining how this feature works. Thanks for the feedback.

Also, good point on the mattresses. We find our guests have many preferences when it comes to how firm they like them. The good news is we hold a full selection on site and will be happy to change it to one that suits you better.

Thanks again for the review and happy holidays for the future!

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