Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Reviews

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Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island  

West Bay Street, Cable Beach, Nassau | PO Box 39-CB-13005, 20317, New Providence Island

"Poor Customer Service and No Accountability"
Posted by: Casey on Sep 29, 2014
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Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Reviews
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Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Nassau Bahamas

#2
of 8 Hotels in Nassau

User rating 3.3

Based on 24 reviews

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Information


Few resorts in the world can match the exceptional fine dining selection at Sandals Royal Bahamian's eight specialty restaurants.

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Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Reviews

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 3.3 of 5 24 reviews
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"I think they put it in someone else's room by accident."

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  EddieMaryland  on Sep 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) 
Visited on: Sep, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
357 people found this review helpful

First and foremost, I have red some other reviews. I have no idea where these people stayed, but it wasn't the Sandals Royal Bahamian. Everything was excellent. This isn't our first rodeo to a Sandals. This Sandals was just as good as the first one we have been to. We did have a couple of minor incedent's, but it is nothing to get upset about. We travel with another couple and since we go there early, our rooms were not ready. No a big deal, so we walked around and ate lunch. When we went back to get our keys, only one room was ready, but after a couple of minutes, the other room was ready. When we got to our room, we had our luggage and our friends were with out. So after an hour or two, our friends luggage arrived. I think they put it in someone else's room by accident. We had an ocean view room in the Manor Building. I happened to notice our ceiling was leaking. We notified management and came and took care of it.

Arrival:
First and foremost, I have red some other reviews. I have no idea where these people stayed, but it wasn't the Sandals Royal Bahamian. Everything was excellent. This isn't our first rodeo to a Sandals. This Sandals was just as good as the first one we have been to. We did have a couple of minor incedent's, but it is nothing to get upset about. We travel with another couple and since we go there early, our rooms were not ready. No a big deal, so we walked around and ate lunch. When we went back to get our keys, only one room was ready, but after a couple of minutes, the other room was ready. When we got to our room, we had our luggage and our friends were with out. So after an hour or two, our friends luggage arrived. I think they put it in someone else's room by accident. We had an ocean view room in the Manor Building. I happened to notice our ceiling was leaking. We notified management and came and took care of it.

Rooms:
The rooms are nice. A little bit out of date, but with an ocean view who cares's. It beats staying at a Super 8. We had a fully stocked bar, which was nice. Since I am in plumbing sales, I always like to look at the plumbing fixtures. I think the bathroom faucets, need to be replaced. The shower head was pretty big.

Restaurants and Bars:
All these complaints about the food and bar service, is completely false. Everywhere we ate was excellent. Kimonos, The Crystal Room, and Cafe Goombay are good choices for dinner. Since we were returning guest to Sandals, they had a welcome back dinner for about 70 guest. You want to talk about getting treated like royalty. This was the best meal all week. They served you a 5 course meal, which included steak and lobster. During dinner they gave us gifts. I got a bottle of rum. The bar service was great. They always made my drink strong. I know people are complaining about how slow service is, well lets remember one thing, you are on their time and they have no time. At the pool bars there are about 2-3 bartenders pumping out drinks left and right. Now at night time, there are fewer bars open, so it might take a few minutes to get a drink, but who cares do you have somewhere to be.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Everything on the resort was beautiful and well maintained. I heard people complaining about cigarette butts on the beach, not true either, Now we did find some cups in the water at the beach from the bar. I guess people are to drunk or lazy to return them. At the Windsor Pool, that is the activity pool. All of day time activties. For each activity you participate in or win, you will receive tokens. You can cash the tokens in for gifts.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We took a tour of some historical sites and Atlantis. I would recommend to go on this tour, because you get to see some neat things. Especially Atlantis. Another thing that is cool about it, is you get to ask your tour guide all the questions about the island.

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"The Sandals Royal Bahamian should be ashamed"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 1.0 of 5

Posted by:  CarolineCharlemagne-LueFong  on May 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: May, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
185 people found this review helpful

When we arrived at the airport in the Bahamas we were greeted by very friendly staff and they pointed us in the right direction. Our transportation to the hotel was great and air conditioned. When we arrived we were greeted by the Sandals staff and received a refreshing cocktail. Because of our arrival time our room would not be ready until around 3:00 pm so after the orientation and a credit card impression to hold $500.00 of my money hostage for incidentals (quite shocked about this) we decided to get a bite to eat and look around the resort. At 3:00pm we went back to the front desk got our key and was directed to our room.

Arrival:
May 18 - 25, 2009
When we arrived at the airport in the Bahamas we were greeted by very friendly staff and they pointed us in the right direction. Our transportation to the hotel was great and air conditioned. When we arrived we were greeted by the Sandals staff and received a refreshing cocktail. Because of our arrival time our room would not be ready until around 3:00 pm so after the orientation and a credit card impression to hold $500.00 of my money hostage for incidentals (quite shocked about this) we decided to get a bite to eat and look around the resort. At 3:00pm we went back to the front desk got our key and was directed to our room.

Rooms:
When we opened the door to the room I could not believe the smell. Why they have rooms carpeted in resorts is beyond me. The room felt damp and stuffy it actually smelt like mold. The carpet was quite stained, the windows did not open and there was no water pressure. We immediately went to the front desk and asked for a room change. They had nothing available until the following day.

The next day we had to be out of the room by 11:00am we did not receive our new room key until 5:00pm. Interesting considering that usually rooms are received by 3:00pm. We finally got into the new room it was on the first floor with a patio. It did not smell and the floors were tiled. Great

Restaurants and Bars:
The food at all of the restaurants was great the service on the other hand was poor. You would ask for tea as soon as you sat down ten minutes later your server would come with tea bags and no hot water. The hot water finally got to the table ten minutes later. My husband waited for an hour an a half for pizza.

Sandals is an all-inclusive resort how do you run out of alcohol. I don't know how many times my husband asked for a drink and they would say they ran out or can't make that drink because the blender broke. They only have one blender. REALLY? We felt like we were a burden to the staff especially when asked a question and received an eye roll or a sigh. Very rude.

Beach/Pools/Grounds:
Beach was beautiful.

Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
What activities? Entertainment. What entertainment? We went with a group and we were all in bed by 11:00pm because there was absolutely nothing to do. YAWN. How much Celine Dion can one person take.

Other Comments:
My husband and I were looking forward to this vacation we went to celebrate my cousin's marriage. Our expectations were high because of Sandals great reputation.

Our first Sandals experience will be our last because the Sandals Royal Bahamian has left a bad taste in our mouths. I especially feel sorry for cousin and her new husband they are embarrassed that so many of us came down to celebrate with them and all of our experience with customer service at the Sandals Royal Bahamian sucked.

The Sandals Royal Bahamian should be ashamed because they are bringing Sandals reputation down.

WE PAID 5 STAR PRICES FOR 1 STAR SERVICE

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"Champagne whenever you want it"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  WishmasterstarMichigan  on Mar 1, 2009  >  1 contribution(s) 
Visited on: Mar, 2009 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
189 people found this review helpful

Arrival: March 1 - 5
It's only 15 minutes from the airport to the resort. Your 1st check-in as at the airport where they tag your bags and show you where the transport to the resort is.
Rooms
King beds and marble bathrooms. I've had ocean front rooms here which are great, but how much time do you spend in your room (I don't watch much tv)?
Restaurants and Bars
The food is excellent. Lots of choices. Champagne whenever you want it. One bar/restaurant stays open until 7am!
Beach/Pools/Grounds
Nassau is beautiful: the beach, the water--be sure to go snorkelling--it's free. Classic grounds, understated, unpretentious, un-glitzy.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel
I took advantage of the free steam room, sauna, though I paid for spa services (WORTH IT!), went to the private island, snorkelled. I don't like to shop. I just want to park it somewhere and RELAX!
Other Comments
I've been to this resort 3 years in a row now and highly recommend it. It is just so beautiful and the environs enhance the experience.

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"The piano bar was awesome - had lots of fun."

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  KarenNewJersey  on Dec 1, 2008  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Dec, 2008 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
139 people found this review helpful

Rooms:
We stayed in the windsor in a concierge room - we wanted a balcony and this was the cheapest room w/ a balcony. It was quite large with a sitting area and a full bar - bottles of several liquors.
Beach/Pools/Grounds:
The beach was quite small but very pleasant. the water was warm adn very clean.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
The piano bar was awesome - had lots of fun. the offshore island was a bust. pool was under renovation - (closed) and it seemed that many people were bitten by sand fleas. Luckily - we take B vitamins, which make sand fleas NOT want to bite you.

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"I want an ocean view!"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 1.0 of 5

Posted by:  SheriUSA  on Jun 1, 2005  >  1 contribution(s) United States of America
Visited on: Jun, 2005 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
93 people found this review helpful

Hello, I would like to send you a review for the Sandals Royal Bahamian All Inclusive Resort. My husband and I were married June 25th and went there on our honeymoon. Everything else about the resort was terrible! Sandals is not a 5 star resort!! Do not send any one to Sandal for their honeymoon. It was a dump. My husband, Darrin, and I enjoyed the time we got to spend with each other but that was about it.

Arrival, room & robbery:
Hello, I would like to send you a review for the Sandals Royal Bahamian All Inclusive Resort. My husband and I were married June 25th and went there on our honeymoon. Everything else about the resort was terrible! Sandals is not a 5 star resort!! Do not send any one to Sandal for their honeymoon. It was a dump. My husband, Darrin, and I enjoyed the time we got to spend with each other but that was about it. We arrived at the resort and had to wait 4 hours for our room. We finally got our room and it was above the back of some buildings, it did not have an ocean view or anything which we had reserved and paid for. Our luggage wasn’t in our room so we couldn’t change into our swimsuits or do anything else. I called down 3 times for our luggage, 4 hours later, right before Darrin was getting disgusted enough to go down and get it himself, they were finally at our door with our luggage. It was strange how when we arrived at Sandals from the airport/customs the locks were on our luggage but when it was brought to our room the locks were gone. I also called down to complain about the location of our room. I paid for an ocean view... I want an ocean view! They moved us from 1515 to 1506. They couldn't move us until the next day though. Both rooms stunk really badly of mold and mildew but they said they were booked solid and could not move us again. The furniture in both our rooms had stains on it and the material was ripped on the chairs. The tables were all scratched up and the pictures were broken. The bedspread was torn and threaded. The thermostat was also broken. You could set it on 70 but it would not turn off. It would make the temperature 51 in the room if you did not turn it off all together. We would have to turn it on for a while and then get up periodically and turn it off and then back on if we would get hot and the off when we got cold again. We called and complained but they did nothing, not even an apology or an extra blanket. We would take turns getting up and turning the a/c on and off during the night. The screen was torn on the glass door so we could open that up for air because the mosquitoes would eat us alive! When you would go to take a shower the water would randomly switch from hot to cold. I checked about if it would do it just when you would flush… nope… there wasn’t any method to the madness it was just hot one minute and cold the next. The main door was broken. You had to force the door shut with the complete weight of your body. I’m sure our neighbors were thrilled when we came and left. The alcohol bottles in the “fully stocked bars” in the rooms were watered down severely. I’m not a drinker but thought the gin that was in the room might help the clogged drain. Since the front desk said it would go down on its own I decided out of curiosity to try pouring a little gin down the drain to see if that would help. It didn’t but I noticed the smell didn’t smell like alcohol so I marked the bottle. The next day it was back at the bar filled back to the top. I opened it and tasted it the next day… I’m not a drinker and know I wouldn’t be able to drink anything straight not alone gin. The safes in the rooms are a joke too. You can go into any room and reset the code and get whatever is in the safe out of the safe. It does not protect your valuables from anyone, house keeping… anyone from stealing your passport, birth certificate… money… what have you.

Restaurants and more:
The restaurants were mass produced buffets and did not have a large variety of choices. There were two restaurants that Darrin and I did like which were the Japanese and the Crystal room but we both got sick from the Crystal room and spent our last night in our room. The food in every restaurant tasted as if it was from a frozen dinner. The English pub only serves 4 types of beer but had ads for 15. The freshly squeezed orange juice comes from cans. The resort staff was rude and unapologetic for any mistakes or issues…The managerial staff could care less if we were happy. Trying to eat lunch or dinner at the "private" Cay Island is a joke too unless YOU want to be the main course for the mosquitoes. It doesn't matter what time of day you go... they are terrible little needles sticking you. The resort will sell you a 7 ounce bottle of repellant for $40 though from their Royal Tings gift shop. They do not have any netting or protection from the bugs so you get all the extra protein you need included with your food. At the end of the week I received our check out form that was supposed to have a survey attached that gave us a chance to win a free weekend back to their resort (not that I would want that… I just wanted to express my complaints!). I had to go to 3 different people to get the survey, even then it did not have any way for me to identify myself, my room or any way for them to contact me. Darrin got angry several times because we would be told one thing and then go to do it and be told that we couldn't do it. For example, Saturday morning before we left the Bahamas we did the Dolphin encounter tour. We had to check out before we left for the tour at 7:30 that morning. I didn't want to take our legal documents with us on the tour and asked if there was a place they could be locked up. The front desk reception people told Darrin and I Friday evening that we could use one of the lockers at the spa to lock our stuff up. Saturday morning when we went to the spa to lock our stuff up they said that the lockers were for guests using the spas services only. We didn't have time to argue we had to leave for the tour bus so we had to take our documents/tickets with us and risk getting them stolen or damaged.

Darrin and I wasted a lot of money:
There were things that were "included" in the "all-inclusive" resort that were additional deposit fees required which you did not receive back. We did not enjoy sandals water sports or activities. We tried Sandals snorkeling, they took us out for 10 minutes and told us the water was too rough and pulled us back in. WE tried Sandals snorkeling twice and they used the same exact lines both times. The water was fine…clear not choppy at all. They did that to every couple we spoke to about Sandals snorkeling. We had to pay extra to go off site to do snorkeling with the Flying Cloud. Darrin and I went to Atlantis and walked around through the aquariums, to the Wyndham and played the slot machines for a couple hours (I'd never done that), and down to the straw market and bought some stuff to bring back with us for everyone. Over all... I feel like Darrin and I wasted a lot of money on a resort that was suppose to be a 5 star resort but was maybe a 2 star. We met 7 other couples on Thursday evening during the Japanese dinner where they have to seat us all together and everyone else felt they had been ripped off as well. We would not recommend it to anyone.

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"While we were at the resort. No hurricanes though!"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  HarryAngelaCanada  on May 1, 2005  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: May, 2005 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
78 people found this review helpful

May 29th - June 5th, 2005 - we did not know that the start of hurricane season commenced during our honeymoon. To note, it was more overcast during our stay, and it rained for a bit on two days, while we were at the resort. No hurricanes though!

Flight:
We booked through Sunquest. Our flight was with Canjet and left Toronto to Nassau direct. It was a short flight, approximately 3 hours. Arrived at 1:30pm. Should have brought a book though, as there were no t.v.'s or the like on the plane. The one flight attendant was a funny guy though, and helped to make it not so tedious. We had a bus pick us up at the airport, along with other people going to Sandals, as well as other resorts. It took about 15 minutes to get to the hotel. If you expect a limo or swanky car to come and get you, than you had better book a third tier room or something better to get this, as this is the only way you will ride in one as we learned.

Check-In:
This was fairly smooth. We, along with five other couples were brought to the piano lounge to sit while they prepared things for us. We were given champagne in flute glasses to sip on. Nice touch. We completed the paperwork at this time and then were directed outside and told to look around and grab something to eat and then come back in 15 minutes to complete check in. At that time we were given bags with some supplies (ie. shampoo, lotion, conditioner, aloe) and given the cards to our rooms. Orientation was offered the next morning at 10am.

Room: #503 - Manor Building:
This was a nice room with a king size four poster bed. The view was great, as it overlooked the ocean, sunset, pier, beach and pool. The only thing with this room was that it did not have a balcony, like other rooms. It had an in-room safe (no extra charge), a CD player, vcr, and other ammenities in it, but no room fridge. The hotel has a library of movies to choose from, but they all seem a bit dated. Bring your own. The water pressure in the shower was great. The manor building seemed to be on the quiet side of the resort. Activities in the day, and night time events tended to occur by the Windsor building.

Resort:
Sandals is a very nice resort. Maybe not as chi chi as it looks on the webpages we saw, but still quite good. There are two main pool areas, located beside the Manor and Windsor buildings. Other smaller ones are located at the back part of the resort by the smaller villas. It is fairly well-kept. The water is very blue, the sand is quite soft, and the temperature averaged about 30c. Staff was very courteous and was ready to please us. You can't go anywhere without someone asking you how you are doing. The private island isn't so private, given that half of it is owned and operated for cruise ship guests who dock at Paradise Island. They have a lot more out there for them (sea does, volleyball courts, activity people who appear quite enthusiastic about getting people involved in activities), than what Sandals offers on it's side (pool, restaurant, hottub, bar and hammocks).

There were activities at the resort, and every day we were given a "Royal Horn", which outlines the days events and what is going on for the day, so we could plan what we wanted to do for the day. They mainly had volleyball (pool & beach), bingo, tournaments for pool & ping pong, and other games. All of these activities were located by the Windsor pool area. In the evenings, they had things like the Honeymooners Game Show, a magic show, comedy show, burlesque type show, limbo/fire dancing show, and salsa night. We did not go to all of these though. The mosquitos get bad at night for some people. Even with bus spray, I counted 17 bug bites on one leg at one point during our vacation.

You have access to the gym (located in the Manor building on the top floor), kayakes,a water bike, sail boats, snorkeling, and scuba diving through Sahdals. Sea dos are offered but are not operated through Sandals. There is also a spa, that has many different packages to cater to people. We saw quite a few people out getting dual massages on the far pier. According to the price list, this treatment was over $400.

Destination weddings were big at the resort. We saw over 40 weddings at the resort in a one week period. It was almost like an assembly line (one day we saw 5 weddings going on), and we are glad we did not go this route. The services seemed nice though from what we saw, but we felt that such an experience for us would be less special. The majority of the people at the resort were honeymooners, so we could all pretty much identify with one another.

Restaurants:
There were a number of restaurants to choose from. Three required reservations. We were able to book dinner in all three. We did so right after we checked in. People who waited to do so until the next day, were not able to get into a couple of the restaurants and had to be put on a waiting list.

- Spices - we had breakfast at this restaurant for the entire week. It was good. Buffet style with all the traditional fixings. It's located closest to the Manor Building.
- Cafe Grill - we ate here a lot for lunch, and once for dinner. Burgers, crack conch, jerk chicken quasedilla and the three cheese dip were good. It overlooks the Manor pool.
-Kimonos - we had dinner here and the food was great. If you want a romantic dinner, don't go here though, as it is more of a social place. You are matched up with 10 people at a table where you get your own chef who makes the food in front of you. The food station is in the middle of the table. You start of with appetizers, then the chef arrives and prepares the seafood, then vegetables, chicken and beef. It is quite filling and we enjoyed it.
- The Cricketer - this is an English style pub setting and it was fairly hopeless for us and a few other couples who went there. The service was not very good and the food was mediocer.
- Goombay Cafe - had lunch there. It is located on the private island. We cancelled our dinner reservations there, as we were afraid of the mosquitos and being eaten alive out there. Lunch consisted of burgers and fries.
- Crystal Ballroom - very nice place. You have to dress up for this place. We booked two nights here. The food was great and service was amazing. The filet mignon was great.
- Baccarat - This was the most difficult place to get reservations for. It was nice setting and the food was very good. You have to dress up for this place too.

Tour: Paradise Island Resort:
We took the tour for $30. This provided a bus drive to and back from the resort. It was good to see this place and all the marine life in it. We took an entire roll of film there. It was good to see it in one day. We and others felt that we would rather stay at our own resort which is all-inclusive, rather than stay at this resort. The food was way too much money.

Overall, it was a good honeymoon for us and we are glad that we went.

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"The resort seemed to forget about it's honeymooning couples"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 2.0 of 5

Posted by:  Kelly  on Jan 1, 2005  >  3 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jan, 2005 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
91 people found this review helpful

My husband and I (both of us 32) visitied the Royal Bahamian for our honeymoon in January 2005.

Arrival:
Our flight from Toronto was only about 2.5 hours long which was a pleasant surprise - we caught a nice tailwind on the way down. Once we landed in the Bahamas, the runway was really far from the terminal and my husband thought perhaps there was a mistake and they were driving us back to Toronto :) Once we got into the terminal, our bags came out quite quickly, they didn't waste any time in getting the baggage off the plane which was nice. Once we had our luggage, we cleared customs which was a joke (as it usually is compared to Canada or the USA). They didn't check our bags and didn't even look at us (just our passports), stamped us and away we went. Once we were done at customs, it was not clear where we were supposed to go, so we went outside and people there directed us back inside to a Sandals Rep behind a desk who took our names are put tags on our luggage with "ROOM 1301" on them. The Sandals Rep told us that we had a private driver - we chose the room with Rolls Royce and Butler service - but that he wasn't sure where the driver was and that he hoped he hadn't left. He asked us why we were late and I told him that we weren't late, in fact, we were there half an hour before we were supposed to be. Needless to say, the driver was found pretty quickly and we were ushered outside to our waiting Rolls. We were only about 10-15 minutes from the airport and were driven to Sandals at break-neck speed, and once there, we were told to sit down (in the lobby) where it was clear everyone (who worked there) was very confused about what to do with us. Eventually, someone came over and offered us some champagne and a cool, damp cloth. We were asked to complete some paperwork and provide our credit card number, and then we sat. And sat. Finally, our "Butler" came over to see us and to escort us to our room....but that our room wasn't quite ready, so he would show us to a restaurant where we could have a bite to eat. 30 minutes later, our butler came back to show us to our room, on the way there, he advised us that he had "taken the liberty of upgrading you". We thought that was nice, and after a short walk, were shown to our room.

Room:
At first appearance, the room was nice. We had a large sitting area with an extensive bar, a fridge full of juice, pop, wine, champagne. There were snacks and fresh fruit on the counter, a small fresh flower arrangement on the table and some very nice furnishings. Our bedroom was quite large, with a king sized four poster bed, large washroom and vanity area. All this seemed very nice at first glance, but after spending some time in the room and really taking a look at our furnishings it was clear that everything was very old and not very well kept. The chairs at the table were beautifully upholstered, but two of the four chairs had bleach stains splashed across them; the sofa was very dirty and had cigarette burns in it. The coffee table was made from particle board and previous guests had placed wet items on it and as a result, the table was bubbled and lifting all around the perimeter. The area rug was thread-bare in spots and the curtains were quite faded. The worst part of the room was the shower/tub area. There was mold growing in the grout and the tub was very high off the ground and was a massive step down to get out of - if you were short, this would be a big problem. There was a smell emminating from our washroom that we couldn't figure out what it was, so we just kept our bathroom door closed for our stay.

Staff:
Our butler(s) were the people we had most of our dealings with - they were very agreeable and called us each day to find out if there was anything we needed - and generally there wasn't. They made our dinner reservations for us each night - but weren't very forthcoming with where we were to be going that evening and at which time, so we generally had to call them each day to find this information out. I have seen many people write in their reviews that Bahamian people were some of the nicest they had met - I suggest that these people haven't done a lot of travelling in the Caribbean. I have been to more than a dozen islands and to be frank, while Bahamian's weren't 'unfriendly', they were certainly not the friendliest I have met (try Jamaica!)

Food and Restaurants:
We were marginally disappointed with the restaurants, but compared to other all inclusive resorts we've stayed at, it was definitely a step up. The food was certainly not "gourmet, cooked by a world-class chef" as the Sandals website touts! The room service was not very good...but I can't say much about the other restaurants, they are what they are...all inclusive resort fare. The saving grace for the Royal Bahamian is that there were plenty of restaurant's to choose from. The only real memorable experience was the restaurant in the off-shore island. We went there for lunch, and it was just nasty! There were flies everywhere, the cooking area was filthy and the food tasted horribly (not to mention under-cooked).

Entertainment:
We didn't partake in the entertainment very much. The cocktail bar in the main building was great at night when there was a piano player there, but it was VERY loud and should not be attended if you're expecting a nice quiet evening. The disco was a lot of fun too....

Water Sports:
We experienced 25+ mile an hour winds while there, so we weren't able to take advantage of any of the water sports available. In saying that however, one of the main reasons we chose this Sandals resort is because the scuba diving is free of charge - this info is splashed across all their brochures, and their webiste. Not quite....you have to pay for their "lessons". The biggest issue we had is that we had to fill out a medical questionnaire - no problem there. They asked if we took any prescribed medication. I take medicine for acid reflux (which is available over-the-counter, but I get it prescribed as my health insurance pays for it that way). My husband was just finishing up a prescription lotion for a tiny area on his arm (about the size of a dime) where he experienced a skin allergy. Because of this, we each had to go visit their doctor to the tune of $50 each so he could tell us that we're fine to go scuba diving!! This combined with the fact that, even though the site says that scuba diving is unlimited, the instructor told us we'd get out once, MAYBE twice....we decided against the scuba. The total cost would have been about $300USD each by the time we were done!

The island:
We only made it to the off-shore island once because the resort stopped running the boat to and from because of the high winds. We had dinner scheduled there three times, but each time it was cancelled due to weather (which isn't Sandals fault obviously). The one time we did get out there, it was quite nice...but not exactly a "private" island. We are distinctly told not to go past the area which was roped off because that half of the island was for the cruise ships that come in. "Private" island indeed!

Beach and Pools:
The pools were quite lovely and so was the beach, but the beach was VERY small.

Shopping:
As previously mentioned, I have travelled extensively in the islands, and compared to most other places I've been, the shopping in the Bahamas stunk! Everything was VERY over priced and every store seemed to carry the exact same cheesy things. I think this was the one area of the trip I was most disappointed with.

NIGHTLIFE:
Apart from the resort itself, we did not experience any nightlife within Nassau.

To wrap it up:
To wrap it up....we left feeling as though the resort really mis-represented itself. The resort claims to be the number one spot for honeymooning couples, but on our third day there....a big convention showed up (no couples!) and the resort seemed to forget about it's honeymooning couples and focused on the (mostly) drunken, partying conventioners. We paid an extraordinary amount of money to visit this resort (about 7K for one week) and left knowing we had been ripped off. Some of the other guests that we spoke with who had been to other Sandals resorts said the Royal Bahamian was shabby in comparison. Given that feedback, we will likely attempt another Sandals resort, but definitely not the Royal Bahamian.

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"Fantastic! The food never stopped coming!"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 4.0 of 5

Posted by:  CorinaFrankTorontoCanada  on Dec 1, 2004  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Dec, 2004 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
74 people found this review helpful

My boyfriend (38) and I (28) spent a week at the Sandals in Nassau from Dec.12 to Dec. 19. It was not very busy and the weather was not very good – that has been our “luck” this year. The resort is fantastic and the service is excellent – it is not the laid-back attitude you may get on other Caribbean islands. The service here was fast and friendly – and that without tips (since they are not allowed to take any- we tried to give them a few dollars anyway). The vacationers are mostly Americans, Canadians and a few Europeans.

Room:
The main lobby did not seem anything fantastic and neither did our first room. We were first in the Manor building and we spent about 45 minutes going from one room to another as we couldn’t seem to find a real “deluxe” room. We are not picky, but when you spend the extra money to go to a Sandals resort you don’t just want a regular hotel room with the view of the back of the property. We did not take the first room #217 as it had a view of the bushes in the back. We took #617 which still faced the far side of the property with a partial view of the water. At night we heard a whole bunch of dogs howling. The shower was all marble, but old with lots of mold on the grout and mildew on the taps – gross! They also had problems with the hot water and there was a big hole under the sink – must be updated fast! We tipped the lady at the front, but that’s all she could do!

The next day another very friendly lady at the front desk by the name of Kim, gave us a room in the Windsor. The room was much bigger, the view was much better – we could see the pool, the grounds and the ocean. Overall, if you go, book a room at the Windsor. The room had a fully stocked mini fridge, liquor bottles, wine and champagne. We barely drank any as everywhere you go you are surrounded by free drinks. The bathroom was nice and clean.

Food and Restaurants:
Fantastic! The food never stopped coming! The a-la-carte restaurants were simply great, especially the French Le Baccarat. All restaurants were good. The service is good and the selection is excellent. There is food 24-7 if you wish. The Pub is open all night and their breakfast starts at 4.00 am! By the way, they do have ice cream if you ask for some!

Entertainment:
The resort was not busy at all (35% occupancy) and the entertainment team was very bad. There is an amphitheatre which was always empty. They tried to have a few shows and disco nights in there, but no one showed up. There were activities scheduled during the day, but nobody participated. The team is not aggressive at all. The only entertainment was the nightly “Sing-Along” in the piano bar at the Manor. They had live singers and you can sing along with them. After two nights, that was getting boring. We went over to Atlantis to check out the Casino and the grounds - $20 cab ride. Tip: we went at night, that way you can go in without having to pay for a tour. During the day, you must pay for a tour and I am not sure you can use the facilities. You can go for dinner, there is a club (we did not go), bars, shopping, you can check out the aquarium, etc. It is very impressive. There is also a casino at Crystal Palace, but that’s only in case you are desperate for gambling. Overall, the entertainment was bad, and we watched TV a few times since our weather was not good either.

Water Sports:
Since our weather was not good, we did not get to do much; we went sailing, but there were other free non-motorized sports as well as sea-dos which were about $60 for half hour.

The island:
The island is beautiful and the beach is much bigger. However, there are lots of sand flies and mosquitoes and I didn’t even realize how many bites I had until they started itching. I had to go to the drugstore to get some cortisone. Bring some stuff with you on the island or spray yourself before. They did not bite my boyfriend at all.

Beach and Pools:
The beach is beautiful, but very, very small. A lot of people just lay by the pools, and you cannot go for a run or a walk on the beach. The pools are beautiful, but we never used them. However, the brochures say that there are 7 pools and we finally found all of them by the end of our trip. There are a few smaller ones by the villa section in the back and one on the island. We used the whirlpool, since it was chilly, and it completely discolored my bathing suit – I had a dark blue cotton bikini and came out with a light purple one. They re-imbursed me for it, no problem.

Shopping:
For $1 we took the bus downtown and bought some souvenirs at the Straw Market. There is good shopping and lots of high-end stuff if you have money to spend. For us, it’s quite a bit since everything is in American dollars. We found everyone to be very friendly and well-educated. We spoke with many Bahamians and they were all very well-spoken and helpful. There is also a smaller straw market across from the Radisson which is a 15-minute walk.

Charges:
If you have to make phone calls, please be aware that every time you dial out, you get charged $7.50 just for the connection, regardless whether or not you get an answer on the other end.

Conclusion:
This was my first time in the Bahamas and I would love to go again. My boyfriend had been here before around the same time and said the weather was not great then either. Make sure you go when it’s warmer temperatures, otherwise, there is not an awful lot to do.

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"All in all this 4 day escape from reality was perfect."

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  ValeriaBrettTorontoONCanada  on Nov 1, 2004  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Nov, 2004 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
92 people found this review helpful

My husband and I went to Sandals this past weekend to celebrate his 30th birthday. I have been to Bahamas numerous times before and have stayed at many different resorts, this was the first time going to Sandals and we loved every moment of it. It was very nice being at a couples only resort, nice atmosphere.

Arrival:
Arrived at the airport, got on the bus, and it was only a short drive to the resort which was nice. Upon arrival we were seated in a nice area and served champagne and a brief introduction to the hotel. In less than 10 minutes we were in our room, and our bags were there waiting for us.

Room:
Our room was nice and clean. We were surprised that there wasn't a fridge in our room, but they did supply water for us daily. Some rooms have fridges, and some don't, but it wasn't a big deal. The view wasn't anything spectacular but who spends time in their room looking out the window anyway? There was a safe in our room with a lock for our passports and such.

Staff:
Very courteous. No problems with anyone at all. At breakfast they would carry our plate to the table for us, very nice touch. Bartenders were fun and friendly.

Beach:
We enjoy really long walks on the beach, which was limited here as the beach is smaller than most resorts, but it also very secluded and you don't have people hounding to "braid your hair" every ten feet. The beach was clean and the water was just beautiful. That blue that you see in pictures....just awesome.

Pools:
There were two main pools both with swim up bars. The water was a little cold, but refreshing. Very clean too.

Restaurants:
We aren't the type to make reservations while we are on vacation as we are on schedules everyday at the office, so we didn't have the opportunity to have dinner at any of the restaurants that required reservations which was fine by us. We had dinner one night at the Japanese restaurant which was great. Lots of fun.

Private Island:
Sandals has their own private island which has a boat leaving every hour, we went there 2 days in a row - the first day just for a couple of hours and the other after we went snorkeling. The private beach was awesome, it had a bar, restaurant, pool and Jacuzzi. We had such a great time there.

Activities:
Everyday they had different activities, beach volleyball, horseshoes, trivia etc. we participated in a few and really had fun.

Downtown:
Heading downtown to the straw market / Bay Street is only a $1 bus ride away. The bus picks you up and drops you off right at the front of the resort, quick and convenient.

Conclusion:
All in all this 4 day escape from reality was perfect. We didn't have ONE complaint and wouldn't have changed a thing.
We would highly recommend this resort.

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"I had been warned by the travel agent"

Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island
User Rating:  Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort & Offshore Island Review: 5.0 of 5

Posted by:  ShannonCanada  on Jul 1, 2004  >  1 contribution(s) Canada
Visited on: Jul, 2004 | Leisure | With Spouse/Partner
76 people found this review helpful

My husband and I travel frequently and while we're pretty easygoing, we can definitely tell quality from non-quality. Those who truly want to relax, have no fear: This resort is awesome.
Our travel agent at Tripcentral.ca (Rachel) was stellar. She was thorough, always returned our calls, and even helped us get the dates we wanted even though it was technically sold out. I would return to Tripcentral anytime.

Arrival:
There was a massive lineup at the Customs entry area at the airport, but we survived. We proceeded to the Sandals desk at the arrivals section and they directed us to the bus. We waited for about 10 minutes for them to fill the bus, and they did accept tips. But the driver was friendly and gave us a narrative as we drove to the resort which we really enjoyed.
Once he pulled into the resort, they unloaded all our bags off the bus. One guest started to take his bags, but the bellman admonished him (all friendly like) and said they'd be taken care of. They walked us to the lobby where we all were seated on plush couches and given champagne. They came to us and asked us for a credit card for incidentals, then brought all our information back to us as we relaxed. (Later in our trip we went to Atlantis for a day, and saw that people checking in there had to wait in line, hot, sweaty, etc. It was just like the rat race we were trying to escape, and we really appreciated the service level at Sandals all the more for having seen that.) They then walked us over to the Windsor block and showed us to our room.

Room:
I had been warned by the travel agent that the "oceanview honeymoon concierge" had somewhat of a limited ocean view. She was not incorrect. The Windsor building is perpindicular to the beach, so while the balconies are tilted in the direction of the ocean, you still only get a partial ocean view. Looking straight out the window, you saw the roof of the buildings on the compound, which was rather disappointing. Personally I felt they should have at least planted gardens or something on the roofs to make the view nicer. My husband was more disappointed than I was, so he called down and asked for a room further down the block towards the ocean. We did get moved two days later, and the view was better. Still, I think they probably shouldn't sell these rooms as oceanview.

The room was very nice. It was a standard upscale hotel room - large, with a seating area, big bed, big TV for our purposes that got lots of stations including Canadian ones (CBC and CTV). We spent one morning laying in bed watching movie after movie on HBO - hey, it's vacation! The room also had a fully stocked bar with juice, water, beer, red and white wine, champagne, and full bottles of gin, rum and vodka. There was a safe in the closet which was very secure as you programmed it with your own code. The bathroom was nice, big tub and good water pressure. Only downside was they inexplicably kept taking our hand towels and not replacing them.

Staff:
The staff were super friendly. The speed of service is definitely on Caribbean "slow down" time zone, but after a day or so you're in that time zone too, so it worked. The bartenders at the pool bars were probably the slowest. The only bump we hit was on our day to check out. We asked for a courtesy room to change in at a specific time. When we went to get in to the room, the key didn't work. When we went back to check, they were snippy with us for waiting so long to try to get in to the room - however, we'd asked for it for that time, so we weren't quite sure what the problem was.

Beach:
Wide and sandy with plenty of loungers and beautiful crisp clear water. Can't say enough good about it. The only suggestion I would make would be to have more umbrellas available - we were there at the hottest time of the year and couldn't stand laying in the direct sun for more than a few minutes, so the umbrella chairs were at a premium.

Pools:
There were two main pools - the Windsor pool and the Manor pool. Both were massive and both had swim up pool bars. The Windsor pool was more of the party pool - that's where the pool volleyball, basketball, aquacise took place. As well, there were bands beside this pool on several afternoons. The Manor pool was quieter - just background music. It was very nice to have a choice of pool ambience in that respect, depending on what mood you were in. There were also several smaller pools on the grounds in the garden, away from the beach. These were hardly ever used and totally beautiful and peaceful.

Restaurants:
Each restaurant was unique - they made you feel like you were in a completely different world each time you walked in someplace new. I really appreciated that because I was afraid we'd get bored with being at the same resort all week.

Casanova - italian, and our favourite. Very good italian food - the spaghetti blew me away. Cafe Goombay - probably our least favourite. Caribbean food, but just not our style. Kimonos - the atmosphere was good, the food was OK. It was japanese, but we weren't crazy about it. Crystal Room - fantastic prime rib. The room is like a ballroom in a fancy hotel. The wait staff were kind of slow, but the food was very good. Baccarat - our best experience. Fantastic dinner, wonderful ambience, lovely bright restaurant. Spices - Standard buffet fare, we ate here only once or twice. Cafe Grill - we ate here several times as it was open at the funny hours when we would get out of bed. Lovely selection and good food.

Spa:
I only went to the spa once, for a massage. It was wonderful, although a bit pricey. If you've been to a spa at home, this is probably somewhere around the same level of service.

Activities:
Snorkeling - book it in advance, especially if the resort is chock full. It's a quick trip because the reef is not far from the resort, so you're only gone for around 2 hours or less. Saw lots and lots of cool fish, including a barracuda named Bob.

Scuba Lesson:
my husband took the morning scuba course and then went on the dive the next day. He enjoyed trying it out, but felt he saw more fish snorkeling.

Evening entertainment:
the weekly show put on by the playmakers was so awful it was funny. Poor people, they were reallly trying but it was dreadful. There was a comedy show later in the week, and it was awesome.

Overall we tremendously enjoyed this vacation and would recommend Sandals to anyone

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