This was our family's first trip to Barbados and it was just as we had expected, if not better. We travelled out with British Airways from Gatwick and arrived punctually. Picking up our hire car was quick and easy, and then we were on our way to our villa in St James.
Our villa was one of 8 villas, all with their own plunge pool, use of a large shared pool and right on the beach (no road to cross just through the garden and onto the sand). We had a 3 bedroom villa all with ensuites, a well-equipped kitchen, lounge and dining room.
As well as a holiday I wanted to visit some hotels in order to be able to match clients with the perfect hotel in the future. There is nothing like first-hand knowledge.
Our first visit was to Little Good Harbour - it is situated in a quiet, fisherman’s village. It offers cottage style accommodation, with full kitchens and large terraces or balconies. There is a choice from one-bedroom to 3-bedroom properties. Either with a garden view or sea-view. There are two swimming pools, a small gym and a small spa. The beach is across a small road, which is where you will find the Fish Pot Restaurant - the food here is amazing - we loved it.
The next four hotels we visited were all part of Elegant Hotels - Colony Club, Tamarind, The House and Crystal Cove. All 4 of the hotels are somewhere I would happily stay myself.
We started with Colony Club. On arrival we were greeted with cold towels and a refreshing drink to cool us down. The hotel is situated in beautiful gardens and right on the beach. The garden view rooms are beautiful, as are the sea view rooms. Although I was told the hotel was pretty full you would not have known - there is so much room for everyone and everywhere is so peaceful. There are 4 swimming pools and then you have the use of the beach and all the water facilities on the beach.
The Tamarind was next on our list and again a lovely warm greeting from all the staff. All the rooms are large and bright and inviting. There are two pools and an adult’s only pool, along with a gym, fabulous spa and two restaurants. Use of all water sports on the beach is included.
Separated from the Tamarind by the renowned restaurant Daphne's is The House. This is a small boutique hotel, just for adults. It has 34 rooms and uses Daphne's restaurant for meals - a really great choice for people wanting a more personal service and intimate atmosphere.
Our last hotel visit was to the all-inclusive hotel - Crystal Cove - again we were met with cold towels and a cooling drink - much needed! A wonderful friendly hotel with great facilities, especially for families. I would not however recommend for people with mobility problems, as the hotel is built on an incline. There are 3 pools and a lovely swim up waterfall bar. The children’s club here is amazing, and the lady that runs it wonderful.
All 4 of the above Elegant Hotels have complimentary use of a water taxi for transportation between the Elegant Hotels - so you can try the different properties (The House can pick up the water taxi from the next door Tamarind Hotel).
We spent a lot of time visiting the island and loved our trip to the East Coast to Bathsheba as well as our trip to the Animal Flower Cave in the North - be sure to try the restaurant here. By far our favourite excursion was the catamaran trip we did with Calabaza Sailing - we loved it so much we did it twice! Swimming with the turtles, snorkelling the shipwrecks, drinking rum punch and getting to know fellow holidaymakers was great and the staff were excellent.
What I had not realized before visiting Barbados was the great food I would get to sample. There are some absolutely fabulous restaurants to try. Our favourites being The Fish Pot, The Beach House and Lone Star and for a great beach café Ju Ju's next to the Lone Star.
Barbados certainly has something for everyone. If you would like to know a bit more please give me a call, there is so much more information I can pass on about this beautiful island.