Antigua & Barbuda Hotel, Resort & Villa Reviews
Jolly Beach Resort 06/07/2003
Reviewers Rating: Fair
My fiancee and I decided to stay at the Jolly Beach Resort after reading great reviews about the resort on this website. I just returned from vacation yesterday and have a lot of pros and cons to share about this hotel.
First, let me start with the good! The fantasy pool is beautiful and very large, and the resort, in my opinion is situated on the nicest beach on the island, the ocean is an aquamarine color and did not seem that cloudy at all, as other people might say that it is.
As lovely as the pool was, I decided to stay on the beach and relax without the sound of the loud screaming and yelling children . As I settled down on the comfortable beach chairs that are provided by the resort, all hope of peace and tranquility went out the window, when the VERY ANNOYING beach vendors began to hustle us to buy there goods and services. One vendor was selling reggae cd's, and when my fiancee Greg kindly said no thank you,the vendor came back every day and would convince us to buy one. When we told him we did not bring money to the beach he replied," I will wait for you to go to the room and get some it is only fifteen dollars, and also bring me a Coke!" We finally figured out that if we buy a small item from each vendor such as a bracelet or a sarong that they would leave us alone for a day or two until they came back asking for donations for there childrens pre schools, selling beaded jewelry, foot masages, mangoes, hair braiding and even marijuana.
The hotel offers non motorized water sports and so Greg decided to go wind sailing and had a great time. He rented a wave runner almost every day on the beach at thiry five dollars a ride.
We had a superior pool view room on the ground level in the Barbuda block. Other than having a great central location, the room was horrible. There was barely enough room for the very uncomfortable king size bed, and there were no drawers for your clothes, so we had to live out of our luggage for the week. The bathroom had a very tiny mildew infested shower stall, and the bath towels were always rough and stained. There was an open window in the bathroom that was covered with a screen and bugs would get in constantly. One night there was a mosquito infestation in our room and we were chewed up while we were asleep, all Greg did while we were in the room was swat at bugs and chase after the crickets that would get under our door.
On our fifth day we awakend to a toilet that refused to flush. When we called maintenence we were told that all the toilets were down at the resort, and so we crossed our legs and waited uncomfortably fo amost seven hours until they were fixed.
The resteraunts were all outdoors except for Bocciolo which was indoors and air conditioned. We dined at the Greek, and thought the food was just alright but would not eat there again. We did not eat at the seafood because I am allergic to fish, so we tried Italian, which was an excellent meal. When we tried to go and reserve the Italian again we were told it would be closed for the next three nights and we would be gone by Friday night when it would re-open. So our only choice was buffet for the next three nights. Boy were we furious by now! Some of the items on the menu included, Goat water(goat meat stew), fungee, wierd fish dishes, rice,rice and more rice. So basically all I ate was salad bar and rice for dinner each night at the buffet. Plus we ate outdoors so you sweat profusely and swat flies off your plate while you eat.
Breakfast was the same, outdoors, bugs on your food, birds flying everywhere stealing food from your plate when you look away. Twice a bird poopod on greg while he ate breakfast, but we'll consider that good luck! We ate omlettes every morning with flavorless un smoked bacon and banana bread, in which a few times I encountered a mouthfull of some sort of soapy tasting substance in the baked goods, which was enough to turn my stomach. So in a nutshell the dining experience was a flop!
My worst expierience happened on my day prior to departure. Greg and I enjoyed a nice rainy/cloudy final day on the beach, we were being hounded from a tee shirt vendor . She told us that she ordered two hamburgers with no fries from the pool bar and that she could not leave her shop un attended to pick it up, so I delivered the food to her, and that is when it happened! I was being harassed by a JBR security guard telling me that I must come with him right away. He stated that what I did was wrong and I broke a resot rule and now would be penalized. I though he was joking so I returned to the beach. Soon enough the security guard comes to our beach chairs and tell us we must be removed from the beach at once, repremanding us in front of other hotel guests and humiliating us as people stared at us in wonder of what horrible crime we must have committed. As I responded to the guard that I was unaware of the policy and I was sorry, he demanded we must go to the front desk and deal with the manager. So we did, and she stated that whether or not we knew of the policy we must pay for the food that we thoght the vendor had payed for. She told us we must pay thirty dollars for the two hamburgers and that she could not waive the penalty, she would bill it to our credit card at once and we could not leave the resort until it was signed for.
After that incident we went back to our rooms in a rage which totally ruined the vacation. I could not believe that as a paying guest at this resort we were treated like criminals and lectured in the managers office like two children on why we do not share food with the vendors. The following day we were snubbed, we called to have our bags brought to the lobby and were ignored, after calling twice and waiting over fourty minutes, we had to carry our four very heavy suitcases to the lobby ourselves.
To sum it all up we wished we never went to the Jolly Beach r
Resort, the food was of poor selection, the rooms were terribly small, and the hotel was poorly managed. Antigua is a beautiful island but if you decide to go stay with the vacation experts and stay at Sandals which is where we usually stay and have a wonderful time.
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