12 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
What a wonderful place to be based. The...
"What a wonderful place to be based. The service was excellent and happy hour at the pool bar brings back many happy memories. The hotel is located on the beach and is very secure. The sand was not hot underfoot even though the temperature was high.
Accommodation was spacious and to a very high standard.
The staff were very helpful and every evening there was entertainment laid on. We went on a couple of excursions which far exceeded expectations.
If I was to return to Barbados then I would definitely stay here again."
- Travel date: Tue 28th of August 2007
On arrival at the Bougainvillea Beach Re...
"On arrival at the Bougainvillea Beach Resort we were pleasantly surprised at how nice the hotel was as the area immediately around the hotel looked a bit isolated and drab.
The hotel reception staff were very friendly and very helpful and quick to check us in and get us to our room. (Which they upgraded on arrival complimentary).
The room was absolutely fantastic (we ended up in a Beach front 2 bedroomed suite.) We had 2 big bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a lounge area and a dining area and a full kitchen... it was fantastic.... you could have quite happily lived there!
The views from both balconies were of the white sandy beach and vast Turquoise Ocean. The rooms were kept immaculate throughout our 9 night stay.
The staff were ALL very happy to help and serve drinks/meals at any time. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they loved talking about "Their" island. The beach was golden powder and very clean as was the sea.
There was always enough room and sunbeds to cater for all the guests (either round the pool or the beach) and there was always shaded area's to take shelter in the midday sun.
The food choice was good but was quite expensive. We tended to get a taxi to St Lawrence Gap (about 5mins drive from hotel) most nights as there was plenty of restaurants and bars to keep us occupied all night and into the early hours! Most of the bars had entertainment on. Either bands or comedy acts etc. and most bars had happy hours on at different times so you could follows them and get cheap drinks all night.
There is a mini supermarket down the road for essentials and a bigger supermarket about 5mins away by taxi which stocks everything. I would recommend this hotel to anyone as I think it caters for all tastes.
I would definitely go back again to the Bougainvillea Beach resort. Love Barbados!
- Travel date: Tue 26th of September 2006
Lovely soft sand beaches!!
"Well, just came back from 7 days at Bougainvillea Resort. Wonderful time even though very very pricey for food. None of their meals at the Water Edge less then $40.00 bd. Lunch $32.00bd. At the grocery store milk cost $7.45 bd, eggs $3.45 bd for six, bread cost $2.39 bd. Even with the exchange it's still expensive. Bougainvilleas' location is not in the main area so unless you master taking the bus which I fondly call the Bajan rollercoaster $1.50 bd each way or rent a car which is in my opinion the best bet, or you will be stuck at the resort. Not bad if thats all you want to do.
Took a couple of tours outside of the resort. We went to the Barbados Wildlife Reserve $23.00bd/adult. Ummm..no mokeys!!! the lady said they went into the forest...haha..some people were saying they should change the name to turtle park. it was still fun though.
Went on the Atlantis submarine, now there was money well spent. $70.00 us/adult, definately recomend, don't miss this.
And finally took the "TAIMI" fantastic another $70.00us food was decent, people were nice, fun snorkling with a ton of fish and a few turtles.
All in all it was a great vacation. I would recomend the Bougainvillea to people with small kids. Partiers should not go there!!!"
- Travel date: Sun 22nd of August 2004
Barbados is Heaven
"We spent a week in September of 2003. I am not sure anyone could have a bad time in Barbados. It is the most amazing place I have been and wish I could go back everytime I even think about the trip. Bougainvillea was fantastic. The only thing we were unhappy with was how early the hotel restaurant closed in the evening. Otherwise it was the best vacation I have ever been on. Cyril is a great taxi driver so try and find him out front, he took great care of us the whole week we were there. Happy hour at the margarita bar in the Gap is also a good bet. Piesces and David's Place are great places for meals. The Tamarind Catamaran excursion was also an excellent time. With so many other places to travel in the world I am not sure when we will get back to Barbados, but I would stay at Bougainvillea again in a heartbeat!"
- Travel date: Wed 21st of July 2004
Nice, relaxed family hotel
"We just returned from 10 days at Bougainvillea with our two kids (18 months and 4 yrs). Its definitely a family resort. We thought the pools were great - one for toddlers, one for older, and a separate one with a swim-up bar for grown ups )with double rum'n'cokes for Bd$5 for two in happy hour!). The beach was clean and wonderful - and the watersports guys are helpful (there's a big bucket of rubber rings, floats, spades etc freely available for kids too).
Service was generally good, though in a laid-back Bajan fashion, so things take time. Watch out for late check-outs - they charge up to $100 US if you want to stay after 11am.
We had a one bed deluxe which was big and spacious.
We didn't like Lanterns particularly - food was OK but nothing special. Better for lunch than dinner.
We had excellent dinners in two restaurants in St Lawrence Gap - Pisces (seafood - about $100 for two inc.wine) and Josefs (more varied - bit more expensive). Both have tables on the seafront - wonderful in the evening.
Worth hiring a car to explore the other coast. If you get to Bathsheba make you you go to the 'Roundhouse' restaurant for flying fish baguettes!"
- Travel date: Tue 8th of June 2004
Great Family Resort
"My family and I stayed at the resort from May 20-27 and we had a wonderful time.
The resort can be considered a 4 star. Rooms are clean and spacious. Grounds are groomed. The pools are a little small, however adequate. Shaded areas are numbered. Hotel staff where generally helpful. Beach was clean and had enough seating. The ocean is a little rough, not great for swimming, but OK for water sports. Pool bar was OK, however was shut down a couple of times for service.
Restaurants included Lanterns and Water's Edge. Both have good food and are unique in there own way. Water's Edge however, is a little expensive and lacks the true feel of a real fine dining experience. Menus at both restaurants had a good variety of choices.
Location of the resort leaves you always in a situation to take either shuttles or cab rides to get anywhere.
I would recommend exploring the Island restaurants; we found a good variety in the St. Lawrence Gap and at good prices. Also, it will be well worth your trip to go to a local supermarket to purchase your groceries, the hotels grocery service is expensive.
Pros:Nice resort for a family stay.
Cons:Distance from any local areas, cab ridesfor mostly everything, Ocean roughness."
- Travel date: Sun 30th of May 2004
HAD A WONDERFUL
"My husband and I just returned from Bougainvillea. The service and attention was excellent. Roslyn, the activities director, was friendly and most helpful in helping us select our tours and restaurants. The Heat Wave catamaran is a must do. The 4 hour tour around the island was sufficient - 8 hours would have been too long. We would not, however, recommend the Harbor Lights dinner cruise - It was OK. We were within walking distance to St. Lawrence Gap - 10-15min. - there were plenty of restaurants to choose from there if you wanted variety. The Lantern Inn at the hotel had a great selection of food for all meals and great service. The Watersedge next door was very romantic - and the service impeccable. A little pricey but well worth it. My husband and I really wanted mostly rest and relaxation - Bougainvillea was the perfect place for it. Wheter at the beach, which was, I feel was the best out of the surrounding hotels, or by poolside, (swim up bar - meet Margarite) we got just what we came for."
- Travel date: Sat 1st of May 2004
Wonderful service, staff and beautiful beach!
"The resort is only 15 minutes away from airport and is centrally located. I thought our beach was one of the best on the island!
Staff was very friendly and courteous. Food was good too .. but I would recommend visiting one of the local supermarkets for munchies and drinks. We generally found food to be expensive inside and outside of the resort.
Our room was very spacious and nicely decorated. The entire complex was very well kept. Although some people did complain about problems with water pressure. We did not, however, have any problems. I would definitely recommend this resort and would go there again.
Barbados is a beautiful island and everyone we encountered was very friendly."
- Travel date: Mon 19th of April 2004
Holiday to Remember
"My husband and I just returned from 8 days in paradise! If you are looking for a very relaxing -- guaranteed sun holiday, then Barbados and the Bougainvillea are for you. The staff are extremely courteous and are always willing to help. I found Barbados to be one of my favorite islands in the Caribbean. Crime is very low -- and there are only a few peddlars on the beach -- they will leave you alone once they realise you're not buying anything. The beach at the hotel is one of the best on the island. Eventhough the sea was very rough the first couple of days, it ended up lovely and calm for the remainder of the holiday -- all watersports were running -- jetski's are fantastic! I would recommend renting a car for a few days. While taxi's are available, they do add up ($12-15 US for a roundtrip into the Gap; $25 roundtrip into Bridgetown). By renting a car, we had the freedom to visit restaurants, shops, etc in Holetown. We also had a chance to wander all the way around the island at our own pace. We found restaurants to be fantastic. Josefs in St. Laurence Gap was our favorite, Pisces was another you would hate to miss. The only downfall of Barbados is that it is pricey -- restaurants for dinner we found to be very expensive (Josefs was around $100 US per person - 4 courses).
But, hey, it's a holiday and for those of you who are about to go -- I am very jealous. I'd trade my Irish weather for Bajan weather anytime!
- Travel date: Sun 28th of March 2004
Expect a moderate value vacation at Bougainvillea
"Wanted to get away from the severe winter chill of NYC, and planned a week vacation to get some R&R and lots of sun. So two single gals went the moderate vacation road. Got what we expected. Bougainvillea is average. Here's the lowdown. HOTEL...Stayed in studio. Room is standard size, clean and has a large refrigerator, range, tea kettle, coffee maker, toaster and utensils. If you want to cook, you have to buy essentials, like coffee filters, sugar and salt/pepper. Recommend to bring some of this stuff from home if you can. Pricey to buy. Water tastes funny, even boiled - all that money spent on coffee/tea down the drain (literally!). NYC water is the best, so I guess we're spoiled.
Only TV was Lifetime, CNN and Channel 2 News from the Midwest. Did not complain since we weren't here to watch TV. Water pressure for showering was good. Pools are exactly as in photos on website. A little small, but okay because they were not crowded even though the hotel was full. Expect lots of UK visitors and families. Everyone was well mannered, no rowdiness. Drinks are expensive for what they are. Happy hour is 2 for 1 but has very limited menu. PRICES... 25Bds from airport to Bougainvillea. 12Bds from hotel to St Lawrence Gap. 12Bds from hotel to large Supermarket. 1.50Bds for bus. FOOD...Fish and Seafood are amazing, and we loved the local food. Our BEST dining experience was at Cafe Luna located on the rooftop of Little Arches Hotel on Enterprise Beach. Delicious lobster salad appetizer, grilled scallops and mahi mahi entree, banana pastry with triple sec and chocolate sauce dessert!
Dine gazing at the stars and listening to the ocean. Service was intimate and impeccable! Waiter gave us wraps to keep the night chill away. Loved it so much, we came back for lunch on way to airport. Even more beautiful views in the daylight! 30Bds taxi roundtrip from hotel and definitely worth it! In St Lawrence Gap go to Sweet Potatoes for the Plaintain appetizer and Stuffed Flying Fish. Also heard lots of good things about Leroy's Truck but didn't get to try. We did get a whiff of his cooking from a family eating at pool. At Lanterns service is slow and food is okay. Did not try Waters Edge. ACTIVITIES...Our BEST snorkeling ever! Highly recommend Catamaran Sailing on Cool Runnings! Book at hotel activities. Great friendly staff! Only 24 people max so very personalized and lots of space to enjoy on the catamaran. We're not great snorkelers, but the guys used life preservers to guide and swim with us. Went to 2 sites, and saw turtles and millions of colorful different fish! Lunch was delicious too! Also went to Harbour Lights on Monday nite. Entertainment was good. Food cold and tasteless for 118Bds. BEACHES...Bougainvillea's beach is clean and has very soft sand. The waves were a little rough at times. We liked the beaches on the West coast better. This is the calmer Caribbean side. Looking back, we should have stayed at a hotel there.
Loved Malibu Beach Club. Call ahead for free shuttle pickup. For 36Bds, we got 2 beach chairs and umbrella, 2 free Malibu drinks and the 30min distillery tour. Loved the selection of creative Malibu drinks! Pretty beach, lots of watersports and great views of the cruise ships in port.
Another day we spent at Mullins Beach, further north on West coast.
Rented beach chairs and umbrella for 25Bds at Suga Suga Restaurant.
Only bad thing was 60Bds roundtrip taxi. IF WE HAD MORE TIME.... left on Friday afternoon, so we missed the Oistins Fish Fry which takes place every Friday night. BAD... Driving is on the opposite side, so we didn't rent a car. Frustrating and expensive to depend on taxis all the time. Prices are comparable to NYC. Took bus to West Coast once. Found out too late that there is only 1 bus that goes there and it was very crowded. Felt like we were on the subway back home! Also didn't know that we had to signup for the free Bridgetown shuttle. So we ended up paying 50Bds roundtrip taxi. Save your money! If you miss the shuttle, take the bus. There's one every few minutes. THE END...Recommend Bougainvillea if you want a quiet place along Southern coast or prefer to cook your meals. It was a little too isolated for us. We were deciding between Bougainvillea and the Southern Palms. Wish we had stayed at Southern Palms. It is a 5 minute walk from the heart of St Lawrence Gap, which has lots of restaurants, convenience shops and food vendors. Definitely easier since we couldn't drive. For vacations, we like to stay at new places, so we will not return to the Bougainvillea."
- Travel date: Sun 28th of March 2004
"We just returned from Barbados having spent 7 days at Bougainvillea. We loved our stay.We hope that the following comments help you make decisions about your trip to Barbados and your stay at Bougainvillea.Everything was well organized from check-in to check-out. All the staff were well trained and wanted to ensure a relaxed stay. Francina, Heather, Babita, Don and Leena made the front desk a great location to find out about the facilities. Avril and Rosalind made sure that any activities you wanted to do during your stay were organized for you.Our room was on the ground floor with a private patio, table and chairs. It looked right out on to the pool and was seconds from the beach. Listening to the waves was magical. The kitchenette had all the basic kitchen utensils, pot and pans, hotplate, toaster, microwave oven and coffee percolator as well as a full size refrigerator. There is a grocery service available. You can fax an order to the hotel before your arrival and they will have your order in your room when you arrive. If you do not pre-order there is a little store two minutes down the road where you can pick up milk, bread, etc. before you go to a grocery store. Check on hours of operation.The room was spacious, clean, air conditioned, with and in-room safe. There was lots of closet space. The bathroom was spacious and clean, lots of towels and face cloths, soaps and shampoo. When you arrive the room is sprinkled with local fresh picked flower petals which is a lovely touch. There is a 20 inch telelvision in the room. Channel selection is basic. There are not enough programs to keep young children entertained but you really want them outside in the fresh air anyways. We brought a portable DVD player and disks to hook up to the television so we could watch movies at night which was a lot of fun. The room was cleaned daily. You are expected to wash your dishes. You can dial long distance from your room.On arrival you are provided with voucher cards to get your beach towels from the water sports hut on the beach. You can exchange the towels daily and on the last day you exhange the towels for the vouchers which you give back to the check-out counter otherwise you are charged $25.00US for the towel.The beach is fantastic. It is clean, safe, few vendors, lots of chaise lounges, shade, breezy and close to the rooms. You can get umbrellas from the watersports hut. We walked past other hotels along the beach and we were of the view that the better beach location was at Bougainvillea.The water was very rough during our entire stay. Unless you are comfortable about being thrown about and bashed by waves, you will not be spending too much time in the water. The pool is fun and you can use the pool at the sister hotel at Sand Acres next door. At Bougainvillea there is a lovely bar in the pool run most days by Marguerite. She makes excellent rum punch and other drinks. There was no excesive drinking, loud parties or noize at the bar. Smoking is still very acceptable in public locations and in the rooms. The little children playing in the pools were all well behaved thanks to their parents. There is a hotel policy restricting visitors to the hotel. Non-guests must be registered with the front desk. The resort is patrolled 24 hours by security.We prepared breakfast and some lunches in our room. We ate most other meals at the Lantern Restaurant which is right on the beach. The staff were pleasant especially Eurita who always made sure we had a great table, lots of great cold water and Bajan hot pepper sauce. The food was well prepared and presented. Freddy's mashed potatoes were delicious. The drinking water in Barbados is excellent and safe. You can drink the water right out the tap, wash food and make ice cubes. The hotel organized two weekly cocktail parties and provided entertainment. These events were lots of fun. Make sure you make reservations so you are not left out. We did order pizzas a couple of times from Pizzazz Pizza which were delivered within an hour, hot and delicious.To do a round trip to buy groceries was about $17.00 US. Grocery shopping was fun and everthing you could want was available including rum, wine, beer, snacks, yogurts, milk, bread, butter, etc.There is a shuttle service available for guests three times a day to Bridgetown which you book for at the Activities Desk. The shuttle takes about 30 to 40 minutes depending on traffic. It drops you off close to the main shopping distict and across the street from the main branch of the Royal Bank of Canada and the Bank of Nova Scotia. Taxis are always waiting in front of the hotel. We were, however, disappointed with the non-grocery shopping. Nothing grabbed our attention (probably just our taste) although all of the jewellery shops had beautiful items. Harrisons and Cave Sheppard have changed their marketing approach and I guess we did not fit the profile they were aiming at. We ended up purchasing all of our gifts at the Bougainvillea gift shop rather than using our precious time to go back to Bridgetown.Make sure that you check out the night before your departure to avoid the rush during the morning of your departure. Credit cards, travellers cheques, Barbados and US dollars are all used. Check out is 11:00 am. If your flight is later in the day, you can use their lounge facility (shower, bathroom, etc.); however, it can get hectic and cramped if there are too many families all wanting to use the facilities. Try and request a day room from the front desk. There is a $75.00US charge but it is worth it if a room is available. They could not leave us in our room but they gave us a superior suite next door at Sand Acres which was nice to try out. Sand Acres is 30 seconds away and has all the same amenities as Bougainvillea. Luggage can be stored with the doorman for the day until your departure time.Tipping is not expected at Bougainvillea as it is included; however, we found that we were so well treated that we always wanted to leave a little something special to say thank you. Also it is important to remember that the pace is generally slower in Barbados which is the reason why you go there. If you expect a frenzied response to your requests then you need to chill out and have another rum punch. Just go with the flow, man, and you will have a vacation to remember.We have tried to mention the main points that you need to consider before leaving home and arriving at Bougainvillea so that you are well-oriented on your first day. The dress around Bougainvillea is always casual; however, you need to wear t-shirts with your bathng suit at the Lanterns Restaurant and many other restaurants in Barbados have a "no shorts" policy. Make sure you check when making reservations about the dress code. In each room there is hard covered book about Barbados which you shoud review as it covers numerous topics that you might want know about to make your stay more enjoyable.Take lots of sun screen, t-shirts, shorts, sandals and bathing suit and 2 or 3 cans of Tim Horton's ground coffee if you like your Timmy's in the morning (assuming that you are Canadian, eh).Have fun in Barbados and especially at Bougainvillea.Michael Butler in Canada"
- Travel date: Sun 21st of March 2004
The Truth on this resort
"Having read the reports on here before going I was awaiting some pitfalls. Shower pressure was not great, but was absolutely fine, staff were excellent bar one who happened to work at the pool bar our first day. She was pretty rude but really everyone else was fantastic.
Airport ride is only 15 minutes. Food is good at the Waters Edge restaurant and about the same prices as most restaurants in the area and thanks to this site we discovered Leroy's Van (outside front of hotel Mon - Fri 12pm to 12.30pm). Cheap and fresh. The best supermarket is about a US$8 cab fare and is called Big B I think. To get a real tour of the area book a cab and negotiate a price for the tour. We paid $US 80 for 4 of us to have a 2 hour tour guide in a van around the real Barbados. We saw Sugar Cane being harvested, chopped and produced, wild green monkeys, highest point on the island and finished off in Bridgetown and Holetown. At the resort the beach is great and stretches for ages and the waves are amazing. Pool is not huge but was never busy due to the close proximity of the ocean too and there are even daily UK papers from the day before in the shop. Web access is US$3.30 per 15 mins which is ok, and one final note, we stayed with our friends in the 2 bedroom suite which was fantastic. Both of us had babies and found this resort ideal for this vacation. There are plenty of pools to use, free sun umbrellas and the rooms have great ocean views. Definitely recommend and remmeber Leroy's food van and that during happy hour if you ask for two drinks you get four....and if you just want one you get two..."
- Travel date: Sun 14th of March 2004