What to expect
- Sleep Quality
Last 5 reviews
Underwhelmed and Overcharged
This is the 3rd time we have stayed at The St James Club, we knew things would be different due to the current covid situation but we were desperate to get away. We had been given advised warning of the extra daily resort fee of US24 per day for extra cleaning and operational modifications which apparently came at great expense to the hotel. We would have been more than happy to pay the extra charge had there been evidence of this but there simply wasn't, we expected more than a few sanitising stations, most of which had been there before anyway. We stayed in a friends villa which was not ready when we first arrived and clearly the cleaning had been rushed, there was dust everywhere, the floors were gritty, blinds broken, outside terrace and furniture was dirty, the list was endless. When we complained we had to wait our turn for extra maid service which was hours. We were also informed that housekeeping would be reduced and the villas would take longer to clean, this was not the case either. We did get a daily maid service most days and it was no different than it had been on previous visits and if anything took less time as the housekeeping team seemed to be under a lot of pressure due to lack of staff. We also looked for evidence of the state of the art Electrostatic sprayers and the so called 'Clean Team" who were supposed to be disinfecting public areas, not once in 2 weeks did we see these. As for extra expenses we noticed very few things that could possibly warrant an extra $24 per night per room. There were a few social distancing signs around and a few floor stickers indicating which way to walk, these were randomly placed and made no sense so were ignored by all. The Staff numbers were down considerably and it was noticeable that many of the experienced staff were not rehired, instead they had brought in trainee youngsters, in their defence they were very good but needed guidance. Queues at rainbow garden were a joke most mornings reaching way back into reception, also trying to get a reasonable reservation time for dinner was hopeless unless you wanted 6 0r 9pm, yet on many occasions when we arrived at the restaurant it was empty? All the staff were wearing masks but many guests did not even when in public areas, you had to wear a mask to order a drink at the bar but you could sit at the bar without one, does that make sense? The standard of the food was not great except for the Beach Grill which most days was exceptional and served up some great specials. As a consequence we ate many meals outside the resort, again adding to the cost of the holiday as we had already paid upfront for the all inclusive. The choice of beer was limited as usual and either warm or cloudy or both! The white wine was also undrinkable and served warm. We didn't try the Red but were informed it wasn't great. We did complain to reception before departure about the resort fee but were told someone from management would contact us , they never did and we were basically ignored, we all felt that the extra charge was not justified in anyway and that it was an excuse being used by ALL ELITE resorts just to get some extra cash in the bank. We will not return all the time the resort fee is in place and I would advise others not to either, there are many many beautiful hotels on Antigua and not any one of them (outside Elite) are charging any extra, in fact it is the opposite and they are offering some great deals to visitors. As usual we loved our time in Antigua and will return but not to St James.
Amazing - Especially The Catamaran
If you go here, a half or full day catamaran trip (from the resort) is an absolute must!!! Captain Earnest and the crew made our day extremely fun and memorable. From front to back, everything was amazing - the food, snorkeling, views, and company. Don’t miss out!!
Nice, but unimpressed
My family and I had two rooms in the Royal Suites. The rooms were beautiful and incredibly spacious with incredibly balconies outlooking the water. We enjoyed being on the bay side of the resort because the wind wasn't as strong. There were virtually no complaints with the room other than our toilet making a loud humming noise for approximately 5 minutes after we flushed it. We contacted maintenance and they informed us it was because the toilet was old. We figured we wouldn't be in our room that much and could get past that. The breakfast buffet was nothing to write home about, especially for someone who is gluten free (although they do have gluten free toast). The bay side of the resort was incredible and the water sports were very enjoyable. The day restaurant down by the bay had wonderful food and the bar had an assortment of drinks. Everything during the day at St. James Club was great and I have no complaints. However, once it came to nighttime there was virtually only one restaurant we could eat at, the "Docksider," unless we made reservations at one of the fancier restaurants. However, although we tried making reservations on the first day of our stay for the rest of the week, nearly every restaurant was booked except a restaurant 5 days after our arrival that was offering French Cuisine (this was really good...make sure you ask to sit outside because I think they reserve the nicer tables for people that aren't paying for all-inclusive). Another complaint I had was the lack of friendliness of some of the staff. Many times, I felt like asking a question was a burden and was frequently given eye-rolls in response. Although with every unfriendly person that worked here, it was made up for an even friendlier person which I appreciated. Orlando was incredibly friendly and personable. All in All, the St. James Club is a nice resort that has some flaws. I would recommend eating dinner outside of the resort at places like Incanto Restaurant or Paparazzi. Sam, a taxi driver at the resort was very kind, friendly, and knowledgeable at showing my family around and showing us good restaurants.
Resort fee is a disgrace.
I don’t usually bother to write reviews about places I have visited,but I will make an exception here.This was not my first visit to St James Club,and whenever I have spent my vacation here I have had a great experience. I know with COVID hospitality has taken a huge financial hit,but to charge guests an extra 24 Dollars a day,in my opinion is outrageous.What you get for your 24 Dollars is virtually impossible to see.I noticed a few extra hand washing stations strategically place around the resort,there were some also new signage informing you of the does and don’t of social distancing,there was some sanitising of the tables and chairs in the bars and restaurants,the staff and “some”members of management, wore face mask for the duration of our visit.If you are going to sanitise the furniture in eating and drinking area’s,what about the sun loungers and tables,this never happened at all.The housekeeping was no different to any of my previous visits,we were informed prior to our visit,that there were electric spraying machines,purchased at considerable expense to the resort,which would be used to sanitise all rooms and villas,these were never used or seen in actual fact,for the duration of our visit.Although I was told ,they were used at Hammock Cove,one of the more up market sister resorts. All in all we enjoyed our stay,but we will not return until the resort fee is lifted,We stayed longer than usual for this visit,and had to pay almost 1500 dollars extra,for two rooms.Although they did include free Wi-fi,it rarely gets above 4 MBPS,which in this day and age is barely enough to use FaceTime.I was informed part of the resort fee,includes a new government tax,surely taxes should not be an extra charge,it should be included to initial bill. I look forward to the hotels reply.
Great Family trip
We had a wonderful vacation for 10 days. Great service despite a few lines. Our suggestions would be to vary the menu a bit more so it’s not so repetitive. Same with the fitness classes -they could be jazzed up with music and Caribbean flare. They could use more staff in the café and at the Jacaranda bar. Music is in dire need of updating with the DJ and singers in the bar. The activities could be spiced up with more activities for teenagers and not just little kids. A lot of the seafood was drowned in too much spice and salt. The buffet left a bit to be desired but the à la cart food was excellent. The line at the front desk was often long they could use some help there. All in all a great stay. For $700 a day I don’t think we should have to pay an extra cleaning fee.
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