What to expect
- Sleep Quality
Last 5 reviews
Reopening Growing Pains
It pains me to write this review as I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, Pineapple Beach Club (PBC) and Antigua. However, this last trip missed the mark a bit and I believe it leaving fair and honest reviews. I will start with the transfer. I have been to the island several times and felt confident in getting a taxi as they are always readily available and have set rates. Double checked in advance, online it showed $28 to PBC. Was told $42 at the airport.... paid as I needed a taxi either way. I double checked with the reception at the resort, and was told $28 - but then when we left I was once again charged $42. So have the rates changed? Are they still set rates? Am I being ripped off? I still don’t know. Now let’s move on to the resort. This is my 6th time to the resort and I clearly have always loved it. I am keeping an open mind and trying to be understanding that they just reopened a few weeks ago. It was still quite disappointing in several areas. Overall, they feel very understaffed. Despite the low occupancy it felt like there were never enough staff around. There was always a longer than usual wait for food and drinks. It was hard to find someone when we wanted to book excursions. Speaking of excursions -we were turned down twice from booking the Pink Panther Excursion because there weren’t any other guests that wanted to go. FOOD - ONLY Topaz was open as far as the restaurants. It was open every day for breakfast and dinner, and only 2 out of our 5 days for lunch. The snack bar was open it’s normal hours, but was kind of a bummer to have as the only consistent lunch option. The Outhouse was only open on Sunday. BARS- ONLY the main bar was open. The Aqua Bar and The Tickled Turtle Bar were closed the entire 5 days we were there. They advertised beach & pool service, but in 5 days I had service one time, one drink, at the beach and never saw the server again. I don’t need to be waited on, but don’t offer it if it isn’t available. Activities - as mentioned above, excursions seem limited because of low occupancy but the real disappointment is with water Activities. The water sport hut was closed almost the entire time. On the calendar it said it would be closed Saturday. But it was closed Saturday. Sunday. And Monday. Super frustrating. ROOMS - We had booked Oceanfront and were put it in a Waterfront. I think this is considered an upgrade actually, but I actually like the walk up to the Oceanfront rooms so was a little bummed we didn’t get what we booked. Our confirmation paperwork clearly says oceanfront and by the time they dropped us to the room and I realized it, didn’t feel like worth a complaint. The room was nice and the view was comparable to oceanfront. BEACH - still a gorgeous stretch of beach, but not the pristine white I’m use to. Some seaweed each day, which I know is natural, but in the past it was always raked up and wasn’t this time around. (It wasn’t awful by any means, it’s just not the post card beach I’m used to seeing) Again, seems to be just a thing of having less staff available on property. OVERALL - I still love PBC and Antigua. I just know that the way it stands now, I wouldn’t be comfortable recommending it to my friends and family. It’s priced as a 4 Star Resort and in the past it felt deserving. Not so sure right now. I sure hope this is just a hiccup and growing pains of reopening.
Avoid at all costs
Rather than write a review, here is my complaint letter that the hotel and my travel agent, JTA have STILL not responded to after a month of me being back... This hotel is nowhere close to 4*. I would struggle to place it in a 3* category. Please see below for the detail of my complaint ROOMS- On the first night we arrived and were shown to our room, which was like something out of a prison series on Netflix. Down a dank corridor with peeling paint, we were showed a tiny room with a grotty bathroom on the 2nd floor. I was sure this wasn’t my room? I asked the porter and pointed out I’d upgraded to beach front and this certainly wasn’t beachfront...it had an ocean view, but it was NOT the room I paid £700 to upgrade to. Nope, this is the best room we’ve got madam, I was told. I sat and had a cry on the bed, but pulled myself together and went out for dinner...more on that later Fast forward to day 3, we went on a walk, and saw some beachfront rooms- I went straight to reception to ask why I wasn’t in them seeing as I had paid for them, after some haggling (and being told I’d been “upgraded” to the prison block!!) we moved, so Christmas Eve was spent packing and then unpacking all our things. I paid £700+ (it’s not clear on my booking) for that upgrade and missed two nights of it plus had the hassle of moving rooms- I expect that fee to be fully refunded as an absolute minimum. As for the room- I’ll let the photos speak for themselves, outdated, tiny, a bed that’s so rickety that if I turn over on the night it smashes against the wall, waking my partner- this happens several times a night so sleep isn’t easy. We have a permanent bug infestation that I have complained to housekeeping about twice- but not even heard back from the hotel management- we can’t use the bathroom without stepping on them. It is DISGUSTING. We also had a blocked toilet several days and not hot water for three days. FOOD- This is the main gripe of all visitors to the resort- so much so that 3 nights ago, after standing up outside Pineapple Grill for 40 minutes waiting for our pre-booked table, I asked to see the F&B manager, who agreed that there were a lot of issues on the resort and upgraded our meal. When it comes to lunch, If it’s not fried it’s not available. Topaz has, on one occasion provided a salad and fish option, but the only place constantly open is the “grill”. Watching the ‘chef’ take frozen part-cooked burgers out of a bag and put them on a grill was one of our first experiences of the resort. The permanent smell of grease round the pool makes it impossible to sit in the area. There’s no system to bring food to you so we can be standing around waiting for up to half hour at a time for terrible food. Generally, there is just one person working so waiting times are astronomical. I have waited half an hour for a table at breakfast, without even being acknowledged twice. The Italian- where to start... we had stone cold meals on night one, and inedible ones the second time- the pizza is frozen and microwaved, the steak was cold and we were served uncooked vegetables Topaz- to be covid-safe, all buffet options are covered but we can’t see under the cloches, so each person has to ask for each one to be lifted to understand what’s available...and that takes a lot of time ..though some bright spark decided to label half way through our holiday. So that’s something. In general, the food is tasteless and appalling quality Breakfast... where to start! There’s a queue of up to half hour to get in, staff seem to have no set tasks so the woman who shows you to your table may also be clearing others and ignoring the queue. Her attitude stinks, we’re all just an inconvenience to her. Yesterday she ambled over to take our drinks order after 15 minutes, drinks arrived after 32. Appalling customer service. They urgently need more staff on all serving areas- and please don’t try to blame covid- they have numerous staff in the kitchens. I want to make it clear that this is not about personal taste, the food in the hotel is a long-standing joke amongst all prisoners. Staff- I have never met a more miserable group of people- the staff are at best incompetent and at worst downright rude. On several occasions I was spoken to in a way that would not be acceptable under any circumstance. Queuing for every meal is bad enough, but being snarled at when you ask for anything and barely being acknowledged the rest of the time made the entire stay unpleasant. There were one or two exceptions, but generally the staff were surly and unwilling to help. Beach- Towels are most often not available, and they certainly are not cleared up from the night before so you never know if you’re taking someone’s bed. Speaking of which, the sunbeds are hard, cheap and often broken. The beach was filthy with plates and cutlery strewn everywhere- on more than one occasion I witnessed someone cut their foot on rubbish on the beach Other- The spa is lovely but massively overpriced- I’m paying the same here as I would in London or New York- it’s not acceptable. The WiFi barely works, the only way to connect is to log on and off again every few minutes There is no way this hotel is 4*. I’d struggle to justify 3. Every single guest we spoke to feels the same. Most days we have had to go out for lunch or dinner which costs $88 minimum in taxis because of the hotel location. Paying for this at the same time as the £6k I spent on an “all inclusive” option is not acceptable and I’d like to understand what refund will be given on our return. We understand that Covid has meant some changes but at no point were we told that there would be no snorkelling gear available, that Topaz would have no a la carte option, that we’d have to wait for half an hour at a time to get served or that the standards of this hotel were equal to a 2* hotel. It is now 29 days since I first complained and when I left PBC, Sanjay the manager agreed with every point that I have made- apologised for the fact that we’d had a terrible experience and promised me a minimum of the £800 back and said she would email me by COP on the 4th offering a week free stay at a sister hotel. I heard nothing from her and chased after a week and was told I’d get an email- no email has come.
Nice Staff, Good Value for Money, and a Great Experience
Pineapple was a really nice resort to spend 5 nights. The staff did everything that they could to make you happy. All of the activities staff were amazing, but Annika was just so wonderful. She went out of her way to make sure we were all having a good time. The rooms are nice and clean. Everything was easily walkable and if not, they also had a golf cart. The beach was well kept and there were a good variety of free water activities and on-land activities on offer. The food was as you'd expect, about average+ for most meals but there were some that were very good. I really liked the kitchen and bar staff, they always wanted to make sure you walked away happy. You want an extra shot of rum, no problem, you want extra cheese on your burger or something else that wasn't specifically mentioned with it, they will do it. Their goal is to make you happy. I'd also echo that with the reception and guest services staff. They were also really kind and accommodating. They let us use the resort an hour early upon arrival and a couple hours later, after checking out. After leaving the resort we traveled to a different part of the island (preplanned before our trip, just so we could experience different things) and I'm quickly realizing based on the prices at restaurants here, Pineapple was good value for money!!
My hubby and I along with another couple spent a wonderful vacation at the PBC for the New Year. It was the PERFECT 10 day getaway and much needed restart & recharge from 2020. I had booked through Elite Island Resorts with an amazing woman named Chrissy who was wonderful & patient. We had multiple (understatement) emails to arrange this trip as I had many questions regarding the resort, safety & cleanliness, travel to Antigua, etc). She was very prompt & thorough and reassured me of an amazing vacation. She was absolutely correct & it did not disappoint! Upon arrival, we had an easy check-in process and enjoyed the welcome drink which is either rum punch or fruit drink. The room was very open air and there were only 2 couples there at a time. There is also hand sanitizer dispensers and signs to wear masks & wash hands everywhere which was comforting. The resort is LOVELY!!! All very walkable, open air, 3 different pools, 5 places to eat, 2 bars, a gym, private white sand beach, with paths & steps connecting all of it. There was also free watersports and plenty of outdoor activities (pool table, ping pong table, tennis, shuffle board, beach volleyball, sand bag toss). Additionally, they had other fun activities like trivia, dance lessons, morning water aerobics, pool competition, and nightly live entertainment. The resort is clean, covid safe, plenty of loungers, easy breezy. The palm trees, grass, plants, flowers, gazebos, that are all over the grounds was just beautiful. If you have mobility issues then I would advise against the Oceanview rooms (3 buildings on top of the hill). We quite enjoyed being up there with a spectacular view, away from the main areas, and the larger, more updated rooms. Our room was cleaned daily which was lovely since we didn't think that would happen due to covid. The restaurants were all different and the food was great! There definitely is something for everyone. Topaz is the main dining area, open air, plenty of tables, buffet served by the staff behind glass partitions, so people aren't all up in the dishes. There were lines at times to be seated or at the food stations, but you just need to know when to go or be patient. We ate breakfast here every morning, lunch & dinner twice, and never got tired of it. The 2 other casual places were the Pelican by the main pool and the Outhouse up on the hilltop. Both are great and we ate lunch or late afternoon snack at both of them daily. The Outhouse was definitely worth the climb for some bbq fish, ribs, chicken, & beer and an AMAZING view. It was never crowded up there with plenty of seating. The 2 places for rezzies and a dress code: Chef Pietro's & the Grill. Pientro's is the Italian restaurant which was a lovely setting with red checkered table cloths along with lovely & friendly waitstaff. The Grill was the more luxe restaurant with a stricter dress code and men were being turned away for wearing shoes and/or flipflops. Come on people just follow the simple rules! I was glad that they had this & enforced it. It was nice to have a more upscale dining experience and the food here was exceptional. We ate here 3 times! The waitstaff here was quite lovely and there was one bartender who was exceptional. We went 2 nights in a row and he remembered my Absolut martini with olives order on the 2nd night. He also went out of his way to go to the other bar on the resort to get more Absolut bc I noticed he returned with 2 bottles as he was out which was totally not necessary but appreciated. There's also a coffee/dessert shop that I never went in but others in our group went daily and enjoyed it. Other staff that went above and beyond were to ladies in Guest Services: Dalisha & Solange. They were AMAZING!!! I had reached out to book a private dinner on the hilltop Gazebo for New Year's Eve for 4ppl. Dalisha was very professional, personable, responsive, and helped us end an awful year and start the new one with a bang. Our dinner was FABULOUS all thanks to her work. Also our waitress that night was Tricia (from Jamaica) who was AWESOME!!! She climbed those stairs and waited on us with a smile & good humor. She made our night! Solange was FANTASTIC in helping me book a sunset cruise on the Mystic leaving from St. John's. She arranged the taxi and booking and all was seamless and wonderful. She also helped me arrange a trip to the Navy Yards and rescheduled a dinner reservation at the Pillars to a lunch. We also had a dance on NYE! She, too, was amazing, helpful, & fun! JoAnne at the omeltte station, the chef at the Outhouse, and a female bartender at the Aqua bar were just amazing (sorry I don't remember their names). A lot of people complain about having to wait for services or not having a pool/beach waiter. Was not a problem for us and we have pretty high standards. Just remember, you are on Island time, so just relax, take a deep breath to enjoy the wonderful surroundings. THANK YOU to everyone at PBC for a WONDERFUL vacation!!!!!!
Just OK, at best. Disappointing all-inclusive. Location makes up for poor quality service, food, and drinks.
**DO NOT RECOMMEND - SKIP IT** This hotel certainly is NOT 4 stars and it's certainly not worth the money. The best thing about it is the location with a private beach and the complex that it's nice and walkable. Beyond that, it fails on many levels. The good: - Location with a nice beach - Free water sports and activities on the beach (kayaks, stand up paddle boarding, sailing, eclipse, volleyball, snorkeling) - Adults only The bad: Service, food, drinks: - Service in general is exceptionally bad and very slow: waiters and bartenders do not express any desire to help you and some usually look miserable. For example, the bartenders makes your "mixed drink" and doesn't even stir it, instead, tells you to get yourself a straw and mix it yourself (as snobbish as this might sound, this is the bare minimum of what I would expect at any hospitality/service-based institution especially an all inclusive hotel) - Quality of drinks are subpar - Fend-for-yourself beach chairs, and towels sometimes not available - No waiters to bring you food/drinks, all walk-up service that takes 20-30 minutes for a basic lunch where you have to stand in an unorganized queue (even then, sometimes certain foods are not available and you just wasted a half hour of your precious vacation time just waiting for subpar food) - The fact that you need to make reservations for the first come first serve dinners at the restaurants is crazy to me. Not only is it a hassle (staff is only available on certain times) but you have to make reservations 48 hours maximum ahead of time and schedule a time otherwise you are stuck with the bad quality buffet - even then, the portions at the restaurants are small and sometimes there's a disproportionate surcharge - Do not count on the Wi-Fi anywhere on the resort despite advertising that they have it Rooms: - They're just OK, on the small side, and noticeably dated
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