Barbados Hotel, Resort & Villa Reviews Reviews
Seacruise Villa 08/06/2004
Reviewers Rating: Great
Seacruise Villa is situated on the Northwest coast of Barbados. It is approximately a 45 minute complimentary ride from the airport.
We were picked up in a nice clean new Mercedes, and the driver was very helpful answering questions about the area. Our first reaction at the neighborhood and other houses around Seacruise was a bit alarming. It almost seems out of place, because of the obvious disparity of size and upkeep compared to the other houses. Seacruise is a beautiful condo style villa amongst the other typical smaller Bajan houses. The neighborhood would be what we in the US would not consider upscale by any stretch. It also created stereotypical false alarms of an unsafe environment. These proved to be false alarms as the locals were friendly and far from a concern.
The villa sits high atop a small hill allowing very scenic balcony views of the entire west coast, and the local houses as well as the beach, which is a few minutes walk down a somewhat steep winding road. The walk back up is a bit of an effort, but the included car came in handy for the trips. The sister villa Sea Symphony, and larger of the two villas can be seen below Seacruise. Another villa (Freyers Well Bay House), can be seen further below as well.
The villa is only about a year old, but the ocean air has already started to take its toll on the stucco like exterior with a bit of black mold on some areas. It is minor if anything, but makes the exterior of the villa look older than its one year. The villa is very large and can accommodate from 1 to 12 people without feeling cramped. Although there is a bit of a breeze during the day and night, it still felt hot and muggy. The air conditioners throughout the villa struggle to keep the rooms cool, but they do alleviate some of the muggy warm air. The housekeepers keep the doors and windows open throughout the day, but we switched the a/c on during the night in the bedroom. The ceiling fans help as well. There were some problems utilizing the cable TV, but apparently a switchover to a new cable company still has a few wrinkles to be ironed out. There is a spa pool as well as a medium sized pool, both of which were kept clean and inviting, and were a welcome relief from the heat.
The cook, and laundress/housekeeper keep the villa spotless and are simply wonderful people. After spending the morning on the beach, be prepared to arrive back at the villa with your clothes washed, ironed, and laid out neatly on your bed. As well as a lunch or dinner prepared at the time of your choosing. They will spoil you with their efforts.
The beach is cozy with off white almost pinkish sand when wet. The water is warm, beautiful and clear, and the best part is its pretty much empty most of the day. All beaches on Barbados are public use, so there were times when a few local kids as well as a few spear gun fishermen would utilize the area. We packed up a cooler during our visits and just enjoyed swimming and just laying back and enjoying the view on our private beach.
There was a concern with the immediate house in front of the villa, which contained many fenced in dogs. There were some unfortunate cruel scenes that would not be acceptable in most countries. I expressed my concerns to the owner of Seacruise and she made it clear she would address the problem. In fact, she has already taken steps in that direction. There are also several other dogs in the neighborhood, and the barking of all the dogs at night was a bit irritating, but tolerable.
Most of the villa rentals on Barbados are situated within local neighborhoods, so you definitely get a feel for the real Barbados. This may not be appealing to some, and may scare some away from Seacruise. The nearest town Speightstown is about a ten-minute drive, and can be reached with the complimentary car that is included in the rental price. Be prepared to spend a few dollars on the insurance, which covers everything except the tires and rims. For me it was $40+ US for a four-day stay. Speightstown is small, but has a few restaurants, shops and stores. It also has a nice beach as well. Bridgetown is about a 35-minute drive and was jam packed and not very enjoyable when we went. It has white sandy beaches and colorful clear water, with many stores with duty free shopping. However, we really didnt find any great deals that we couldnt find in the states.
The villa is beautiful, roomy, clean, comfortable and ideal for large or small groups. The pool and spa were clean and inviting, as we used both during our stay. Best of all was the view, and just as nice was the beautiful "private" beach. That was what we enjoyed the most, and would recommend the villa on that alone. The extras such as a personal arrival welcome by the owner, fresh personalized flower arrangements, champagne, pre-arrival grocery shopping, and the included car and airport transfers were added touches that only increase the charm of Seacruise.
If you want to vacation away from the crowds and experience the local culture in a nice villa with all the amenities, then Seacruise is for you. If you are uncomfortable in a genuine local setting away from the resorts and hotels, then I do not recommend Seacruise.
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