11 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Booked on the reccomendation of Tripadvisor users
"I had 2 reasons for booking my stay in Barbados at the Rostrevor. The first being that the friends i travelled with could not afford to stretch their budgets to an all inclusive, and the second being that I had read such brilliant reveiws on Tripadvisor.
This was my 3rd time in Barbados between March 2004 and June 2005, my previous visits have been to the Almond beach club on the west coast, and the Turtle beach in Christ church. Both of these were all inclusive, good food, nice staff, excellent pools, fantastic rooms and generally quite luxurious.
I knew when i was booking this hotel that it would be far from luxurious and nothing like the other hotels i had stayed in previously, but going on the reveiws i had read i was expecting basic, clean, well kept accomodation.
When we arrived at the reception we were greeted by an unhelpful, stroppy receptionist who muttered that we would have to fill out a form before she showed us to our rooms. After waiting for not too long i was taken to my room (2 of us, we had booked a double bed ocean veiw suite) while the other 3 were also taken to their apartment (a 2 bedroomed ocean veiw apartment). When i was taken down and shown into my room i almost burst into tears. It was vile. The receptionist dissapeared 'quick sharp' - I think she probably knew she had tried to fob me off with what was defineteley the worst room at rostrevor! It was dark, dingy, dirty, really grubby looking. The glass shutters were filthy, the cupboards looked like they had had a 'slap dash' paint job - about 12 years ago!! The toilet seat was badly stained and the room was just generally run down. That room was C6.
I went to the reception to complain about my room, there was no way i was going to stay in it at all. I told them that it had not lived up to my expectations, and after about an hour of arguing and being fobbed off i told them i wanted a refund so that i could move to somewhere else. Of course they refuesed, but still continued to tell me that if i wanted a better room, i would have to spend another $100 US per night!!! I started to get really annoyed at this point and demanded to see the manager. Another 1/2 hr later the manager came along, and spoke to me. I expalined the above and she took her receptionist out to the back. She eventually came back and told me that she could offer me the same room, but 2 doors along at no extra cost or that i could have another one upstairs for an extra $20 US per night.
Eventually I settled on the one 2 doors down. (Apartment C8) This was exactly what i had been expecting when i booked this accomodation. It was the same room but a fresher, cleaner, brighter, much nicer version. The cupboards and kitchen units were a light beech wood and very pleasing on the eye!
The bathroom was VERY clean. Toilet seat brand new, I was very pleased.
What had annoyed me about this was that after a 9 hour flight plus travelling on either side of that, all they had to do was offer that room in the 1st place. From complaining, to actually getting my new room it took 2 hours and 35 minutes!!
When i got unpacked and settled i felt quite happy. I popped the lamps on and the room looked really cute.
The maid service was strange. It seemed that She came when she felt like it. Often the beds would be made (nothing else was done) in the morning, and your towels would be replaced around 5pm?!
The front desk staff were quiet, not very hospitable, but the lady at the pool bar was lovely. Always very talkative, even if you were not sitting at the bar!
There are 2 really nice, and seemingly very unappreciated maintanance guys/porters/gardeners/oddjob men. Junior was lovely, always made time to have a little chat and make us feel welcome. And Paul was cool too.
The pool was basic, but well maintained and big enough to swim a few lengths in.
I had breakfast a couple of times from the pool bar, which was fine.
Overall, I enjoyed my stay in Barbados. After the initial palava with the room, everything was fine. The location of the hotel was great. Right in the heart of things.
There were some fantastic beaches nearby. The beach at the rostrevor was tiny, but perfectly formed. Excellent for catching those rays by the sea without moving too far!
If you want magnificent beaches, come out of the Rostrevor and either turn right and walk for 5 minutes for a long sandy strip with jet skis etc, or come out and turn left, walk right down to the end of the gap and there is a beach just there. On 1st looking, you could be forgiven for thinking thats it, but once you get on to the sand and walk past the rocks the most amazing beach is ahead of you. You can walk for about 2 miles. Thats Rockley beach where you end up, and i tell you.....ITS PARADISE!!!
I LOVE Barbados, absolutely LOVE it. I would never let the not so good experience at the Rostrevor put me off. In fact im going back in september!
But I will definately be staying at an all inclusive! it costs a bit more, but theres just no hassle. Its nice when you dont have to fuss, and worry about where you are going to eat etc etc.
Talking of eating, we spent a fortune at the food store. And didnt seem to get much for it.....Most nights we ate food from the street vendors outside the ship inn. The food was nice, but was the same every night. It got a bit boring so we gave up on that! We also ate at Cafe Sol - Mexican restaurant at the end of the gap- which was not very good. Quite expensive and only 1 out of 5 of us actually enjoyed it. We often ate at Chefette, which we loved!! Its a fast food restaurant (but i do use that term loosley - the sevice is unbeleivably slow!!). They did Roti's, burgers, chicken etc. Tasty and well priced. Also one night we had KFC. They actually have a delivery service - Can you beleive it??!! That was great, a real treat!!
I would say if your not bothered about luxury then this is a great place to stay. If you want to go partying, and your literally going to use the room to sleep in then book here. And avoid C6 like the plague!!!!"
- Travel date: Tue 14th of June 2005
Run down, noisy, overall terrible!
"Just got back from Barbados for a friend's wedding and hated it! I was continually harrassed by men everytime I went out alone (hey, darling you look nice, etc.... or excuse me, miss would you like to look at....). Also, it was rare to find friendly people. Most service people seemed lazy, and I had to be the one to approach them or start talking if I needed something. I was surprised and was expecting friendly islanders. But the country is poor, and many people are desperate, so they turn to tourists to make money. I understand, but I don't wish to be bothered on my vacation.
Also, I had several bad experiences with cab drivers who wanted me to pay extra for air conditioning. When the third cab driver told me that his air conditioner wasn't working, I said fine and that I would find another cab. He then changed his mind about his air conditioner and angrily said just get in his cab. I didn't and asked the hotel to call another cab and he stormed off.
As far as the hotel, my room was very run down and old, even the towels, which were tattered along the edges. I was put in a spot by the bar and pool. It was so loud from the wee morning hours, starting at 6 a.m., when workers were shouting at each other about things, to late at night, with some TV blaring in the background. And this horrendous noise wasn't coming from the guests because there weren't many in the area.
The maid service was really bad. The first day the maid didn't show up so I asked about it around 5 p.m. The front desk said she'll get around to it. When she eventually did, she took my bath mat and never replaced it or the soap bars which were gone. They didn't clean the place thoroughly or even clean the sink, toilets or shower. They basically just fixed the bed and swept the floor. The next day I assumed the maid would not come early, but she showed up at 9 a.m. and got irritated when she couldn't clean my room right then and there. In another hotel, if you ask them to come back, it's not a problem, and they don't get angry and show this to a hotel guest.
Another day I tried to use the oven in my room. I turned it on the way you turn on a normal oven with a dial. I was going to hop in the shower while letting the oven warm up but smelled gas. I then realized that the oven needed the pilot light lit and turned it off immediately. I was really upset because the hotel staff didn't provide a warning about this. There could've have been a serious accident if I waited longer.
On two other days, staff came to my room unannounced to do something. All I know is that I didn't call them, and they were disturbing me when I was taking a nap. Each time I asked them to go away. Then I wondered if they would have entered my room if I wasn't there.
Also, on my last night there the front desk called me to ask me when I would check out. I never had a hotel ask me this before and simply asked them what was check out time. She said 12 p.m., so I told her I guess I have up until 12 p.m. to check out. Why did they need to ask me this question and disturb me again?
The staff at the hotel was never warm and friendly. They were like most of the Bajuns, not smiling when you first come to see them. I just got the impression that their job is drudgery to serve people. I picked the hotel because of the good reviews. I don't know how people had such a good experience. I was absolutely miserable and couldn't wait to leave."
- Travel date: Tue 31st of May 2005
Loved the Rostervor!
"The Rostervor was absolutely PERFECT. Since there are a variety of hotels in Barbados (many of which we visited to scope out the scenery), I would suggest that you seriously think about what you are looking for in a hotel before you choose one. For example, we had intended to go to Barbados to spend most of our time checking out the sights or at the beach, and all we expected from our hotel was a nice, clean place to sleep. If instead you want a big resort where you'll be spending most of your time (I'm not sure why you'd want to go to Barbados to spend all your time in your hotel, but hey), the Rostervor isn't the best place for you. We were expecting the bare necessities at Rostervor, but we were pleasantly surprised to find that our room was clean, spacey AND luxurious! We stayed in a Superior Double room, where our balcony (!!) was facing the ocean and the pool. We had a big kitchenette, with a small stove, dishes/glasses, and a mini-fridge. The single best feature of the Rostervor is its location: RIGHT in the middle of The Gap (which is the local name for the popular nightlife area). Despite its central location, noise was a non-issue. Where people at other hotels had to blow a ton of cash on taxis to get to the bars and clubs at The Gap, we just had to step outside to be in the middle of it all. The staff was friendly and check-in/check-out was very quick and easy. We had a wonderful stay and have already decided that we will stay at the Rostervor again when we next visit. I highly recommend it to anyone who is visiting Barbados and doesn't know where to stay."
- Travel date: Sun 29th of May 2005
My stay at Rostrevor
"I stayed at the Rostrevor apartments last year. When I arrived the attendant automatically assumed that I was registering for the most expensive room even though I called from the airport and explained the room and price that I wanted. Having paid for the first night I stood waiting and waiting for this same attendant to bring my change. I arrived on a late flight and was the only customer in the lobby. I opened the louvres in my room during the day and when I looked out there was this working lying down on the wall outside my room. I immediately called the front desk. On my way to Bridgetown as I was walking down the gap one of the drivers from the Rostrevor compound begins to trouble me and start up small talk. I thought he was going to knock me down. When I asked for my discount as a Caribbean citizen I was informed that I would not get it. The maid assigned to clean my room came banging on my door when I was in deep sleep and barely cleaed anything when I let her into the room. The taxi driver who was hired dropped me off at the wrong place, left to do his own business and then returned to take me to my second destination even though I had specifically explained before I left that I needed to go to two specific places. This was my worst experience in Barbados."
- Travel date: Tue 24th of May 2005
Very Warm and Friendly intimate Apt hotel
"A very Nice Intimate Apt Hotel located on the water with a wonderful pool. The staff is warm and friendly and it is located in the heart of the St Lawrence Gap. Walking distance to all cafes, shops, restaurants.
My wife and I went with another couple and we all agreed it was a wonderful stay with a very comfortable feel.
Phil and Lauren Fellner Long Island NY"
- Travel date: Wed 9th of February 2005
First time on Barbados?
"Just got back from 14 days accomodated in the "new" block. We spent a long time trying to decide on the Hotel for us and after long deliberation and numerous review reads we opted for the Rostrevor.
I can honestly say that we were more than happy with the (Virgin) brochures description of the accomodation. It was clean, still in good order and very pleasing to occupy.
We were located on the top floor just left of the central room, our room offered a fantastic sea view and was fairly well insulated against noise which is a fact of life at this location, being almost directly opposite the Ship Inn which is easily the liveliest and hence the noisiest pub / club in the vicinity.
The rooms are as described in the brochure and are equipped for two as far as eating utensils are concerned, the cable TV is mainly piped in from the USA and is therefore extremely mundane and repetitive.
The kitchenettes have no ovens or grills so food preparation needs a little imagination. However the microwave and the 2 burner gas hob are sufficient for a good breakfast and the odd snack. All equipment again is in GWO.
There is a lift serving the new block which is welcome should you have enormous amounts of luggage, but the staircases are within a few steps and offer an alternative should you be feeling more energetic.
Information on the electrical sitiation in the rooms was confusing as I was reassured that there were no 220 / 240v supply points available for things like rechargeable camera / mobile phone batteries etc. I therefore spent a long time trying to obtain a step-up converter 110 - 240v locally before I noticed that the bathroom has a 110 / 220v outlet which is designed for rasors but which would probably be sufficient for the battery chargers (plug adaptor still required)
One point which seems to crop up frequently is the use of locally supplied phone cards. Be aware that if you purchase a phone card and use it to call from the hotel, that you will not only be pre-paying for the call (Credit card details are needed at point of purchase), but you will also be presented with ANOTHER phone bill upon checking out, which can (will be) a bit of a shock. Unfortunately this fact is not made clear at the time of purchase ?? or by the Hotel travel reps - BEWARE.
Ok now for the rest:
OK - small - shallow end 3ft deep end 6ft - NO CHLORINE for disinfection used which is a little worrysome, as a lot of elderly ladies were spending a lot of time just bobbing about in the water yacking to each other while we were there - and there are no "guest" toilets at the pool area as far as I was aware. The inevitable occurances could concievably make the water a little fruity by the end of 2 weeks.
OK - Beer BD$3.50 - Basic snacks available which are prepared by the only bar person - so if shes cooking youve gotta wait a while for drinks.
Looked but never found it - I believe its off to one side of the Hotel somewhere.
Small but perfectly formed - big enough for the traffic at the time we were there but I would imagine it getting a bit crowded if the Hotel were full of families.
WOW - very swimmable in, hint of a current, slight shorebreak later in the afternoon otherwise picture postcard.
Plenty of space but chairs etc would be insufficient if more that 20 or so guests wish to sunbathe at the same time. There is also not a lot of natural shade on the "public" patios and it can get VERY hot around 13.00 hrs to 15.30 hrs daily.
None really, just the odd passing Cat / Jet ski rides who occasionally call in for business, no concerns here.
None at hotel level but plenty available off site - closest being the Ship which is across the street, with more within 5 mins walk in either direction. I would also strongly recommend that you do not blindly book the Tour reps offers which by the way are always "nearly fully booked" (they're not) and look to getting to the places YOU want to see independantly - Example: Trip to Fish Fry at Oistins by Virgin approx Â£25.00 per head, we got there in a Taxi, Eat and returned by Bus for Â£13.00 all in (Thats the same meal and the same everything else)
Readily available up and down the street and also from street vendors (choice of at least 3 at the Hotel entrance) Prices range from A couple of quid for a take - away street vendor meal up to Â£12.00 each for a restaurant meal with drink (Wine Very Expensive at Â£12.00 for a bottle costing Â£5.00 in the UK) Beer - Banks Beer is the cheapest locally produced bottle (.275), a case of 6 will cost about Â£3.00 (BD$9.00) at the supermarket, and over the bar from around BD$5.00.per bottle.
NB Take advantage of the Happy hours which are staggered (yeah we were also) up and down the street - If you do your sums right you will be able to stay on 2 for one's all night by tactical planning!!
Food / Drinkshop available at convenience store located 50 mtrs out of Hotel turning right. (Banks bottles are returnable for refund)
Oherwise a short walk of about 15 mins will get you to either the Trimart, or Big B's Supermarket, both of which are located out on the road to Bridgetown just by the filling station. (Big B's is best)
Buses are great, use them, hire cars a little ropey for budget models, saloons and jeeps a bit expensive - we used the buses and loved them, bus stops are up on the main road and are marked "In to City" (towards and in to Bridgetown) and obviously "Out of City" for the opposite direction. BD$1.50 per head per trip.
Loved it, going back just as soon as possible - same Hotel but probably during Jan to Mar, which is best for Wind and windsurfing (at Oistins and Silver sands, November failed to produce sailable winds for us)
Locals attitude towards tourists:
I have also left a review agianst "Barbados" - An honest review. which you may find interesting if you are a Black / White couple assuming you are going to find Heaven for mixed partnerships on Barbados.
Cheers and enjoy,
Frank and Sonia"
- Travel date: Sat 4th of December 2004
"Special Thanks To Yvonne,Deborah,Joyce,Jame & Paul.
Cant Forget Frank & John In Castaways
(Hope My Chelsea Shirt Is Up In There !!)
Hope To See You All Soon.
(The DD Family)"
- Travel date: Wed 20th of October 2004
5 timer at Rostrevor!
"Of my 28 visits to Barbados over the years, the last 5 have been at Rostrevor. I would only recommend the newly renovated beach front apartments (have stayed in one of the old rooms once). These rooms are very nicely done and an excellent value for the money. The French doors open to the sea which is close enough to hear the waves and give you a nice breeze at night. The kitchen is well enough equipped to get you through breakfasts, lunch and a few uncomplicated dinners (although there is no oven - only a cooktop and microwave). Excellent location for those interested in the Gap's nightlife, but built so solid that as soon as you shut the door you shut out all the noise from the Gap."
- Travel date: Sun 17th of October 2004
great place for the money
"It was incredible to be able to stay at a place so close to the beach for such a cheap rate. Our room was close enough that we could keep the balcony doors open at night and just listen to the waves while we slept. That did work for the first couple of nights, probably because of the rain. When the rain stopped, the mosquitos were too bad to leave the doors open. But it's still a beautiful view in a great area. The pool was nice, and it's neat to be right in an area where you can just walk out on the street and buy dinner from a street vendor, making dinner right on the street.
I do agree the the beach isn't much, and when I went into the water there, it was a little rougher than I'd like my Carribean. I think that was due to storms as well. In later beach trips, we walked a short way to Divi Soutwinds, and to Causarina, which both have AWESOME beaches, and are right around the corner. The location of this hotel makes it a great place to visit other beaches.
The noise from the street was pretty loud, but we couldn't hear it in our room, especially when we had the balcony doors open at night, listening to the waves. It could be different in the high season.
The staff was professional, and I have no complaints with anyone or anything. The phone call issue was a bit pricey and strange, but we didn't make many calls anyway.
The location of this hotel is also good for evenings out if you like to party, or for nice restaurants, including the pricey, but nice Pisces."
- Travel date: Sun 25th of July 2004
Not a secret anymore!
"I've been home a week from my wonderful stay in Barbados at the Rostrevor Apartment Hotel and am already looking at booking to go back!
We booked due to the good reviews we'd read here and so, in turn, we want to add to them and let people know this is really a great place to stay. During my time in Barbados I also went to three other hotels (one to see about purchasing a time share (wouldn't bother, it was lovely, but so is Rostrevor!), and in my honest opinion I could see no valid reason for paying so much more for a four or five star hotel when the Rostrevor is clean, friendly and good value.
On arrival I was a bit disconcerted about always having to return the key to reception, but this in fact made perfect sense because I didn't really want, or need, to carry a key around with me for my entire holiday and worry about using it. The second thing that disconcerted me was the fact that our room door was directly opposite the lift...I felt sure that would cause problems...on arrival it was dealthy quiet and I asked the receptionist if it was always this way and she said "no, you'll hear the Ship Inn later on". Well, due to the busy, funpacked days my daughter and I enjoyed in Barbados we were, invariably, in bed by 11 pm each night and not once was either one of us woken up by the Ship Inn or by our room door being adjacent to the lift. The majority of the noise we heard (apart from the aircon) was the noise of the sea through our wonderful patio type doors leading onto our balcony. The only time I head music from the Ship Inn was on trips to the bathroom.
My daughter and I were treated with respect and courtesy by absolutely everyone at Rostrevor (and indeed in other places we visited in Barbados). It's a country where things are done slowly...there's no rush, no hurry and there's no point in bringing a London (or NYC) type of rush/hurry/fuss attitude to the place...it just doesn't fit in. We found that being friendly, pleasant and polite got us absolutely everything we needed...including clean towels every single day! (It is worthwhile noting that Rostrevor will only replace your towels daily if you place them in the laundry basket in the bathroom...this way they know you require clean ones. If you hang them up they think you want to use them again! We took our own beach towels, but you can hire them from Rostrevor (saves on packing space!).
Rostrevor is clean and well kept and the staff are helpful and friendly...helping us to book horseriding trips, round island trips, taxis and so on...and even making additional phone calls to change trips due to a slight change in plan for us. Everything was done with a smile.
The safes are rather odd. It frustrated the hell out of me to tap in my code only for the lift not to open with the "A" button but after 10 tries would open with the "B" button, then the next time the "A" would open it!...those need to be updated, but for BDS$50 ($25US or Â£16) for 11 days, there's not really much to complain about.
The beach...yes it's small, but it's clean and safe...the waves are a bit fierce for little children and I'd suggest those who go in need to be able to swim quite well...but it's shallow out to about 100 m (there was often a bank of sand some 50 metres from the beach (in the sea) where one could stand up to one's knees. During our ten days there, my daughter and I had the beach to ourselves almost every single time we chose to sit on it (usually daily!)...people would come down from the patios to paddle or swim, but only on three occasions were we joined by two other people on the beach. Just around the corner (a three minute walk for slow walkers) there is another beach and in the opposite direction, there is another beach, again about a five minute walk away. All beaches in Barbados are public, so you are not restricted to the use of the one near your hotel. You can go on absolutely any beach in Barbados that you choose to go on...so no need to pay extra for a hotel that claims to have "miles of sand"...it doesn't belong to them!
Nightlife...St Lawrence Gap is the nightlife capital of Barbados...plenty to do, plenty to choose from...brilliant restaurants, lovely people, even souvenir stalls...Aquapisce (opposite Rostrevor) does the best rum punch for BDS$8 ($4US, Â£2.50).
Compared to London and NYC, Barbados is inexpensive...you can get a two course meal for two with alcoholic drinks in a decent restaurant on the Gap for BDS$120 (US$60, Â£40).
We stayed in the new block, air con, cable television, kitchenette, bathroom, fabulous balcony and enourmous king size bed (though we would have preferred two doubles it didn't bother us as mother and daughter to share). I didn't see any evidence of any insects in the room at all during my entire stay...but then, I took a room insect repellant with me, so maybe that worked!
The only time I saw a cockroach was during my one trip to the Ship Inn (never again!), but I fully expected to see insects of some discription in a tropical country...and so should anyone else visiting. To do otherwise would be to fool yourself. I've seen bigger cockroaches in NYC and London anyway! LOL
We had a brilliant time at Rostrevor...the people are lovely (especially Joyce in the Almond Tree bar) and we can't wait to go back again.
I'd definitely recommend it to anyone wanting a reasonably priced holiday in a fabulous Caribbean country.
By the way...do NOT believe any tour guide who tells you that the best Barbadian fare is to be found at the Atlantis Restaurant on the East Coast...the best Barbadian fare is to be found at Cave Shepherd (a department store in Bridgetown)...if you do nothing else during your holiday, make sure you have lunch there at least once...true Barbadian food at prices that will have your wallet grinning from ear to ear (example: Macaroni cheese, pork chops in gravy, fried plaintain, coleslaw, potato salad and a large glass of fresh fruit juice x2 cost the princely sum of BDS$33 (US$16.50, Â£11). Trust me...original and authentic was proved by the fact the queues were full of Bajans waiting for their lunches!
- Travel date: Sat 24th of July 2004
Recommend The Rostrevor Hotel
"we have been going to Barbados for 7 years now,stayed at the Rostrevor hotel 4 times,it will be 5 times in november of this year.
The hotel is in the center of the gap with restaurants and bars minutes walk in both directions.
All the rooms have million dollor views of the sea,its truely breathtaking.The rooms are spacious and clean,request a high floor and you will have a queen size bed the lower floors have twins,with maid service every day,along with clean towels daily.The staff are very friendly and polite and will go out of their way to make sure you have a rememberable stay with them.The pool deck is spacious,with a few steps down to a small beach,(larger beaches 5 minutes down the street)The bar opens arround 7.30,closes arround 6ish.There you can also get food.There isnt any entertainment at the hotel, just step outside and you have it all.There is a small shop near the hotel,but youll find big b's is much larger and cheaper,with a free shuttle sevice back to the hotel.
Barbados is a truely stunning place,the locals are very friendly.The many times we have visited,not once have we had any problems.hire a car and get out and about,some stunning views on the east coast,and on the west coast you might bump into a celebrity or two.Ted's tours is a great day out if you dont want to drive.
Hope this has gave you a little info
enjoy your stay in Barbados at The Rostrevor Hotel in the Gap"
- Travel date: Sat 7th of February 2009