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Anguilla Hotel, Resort & Villa Reviews
Rendevous Bay Hotel 06/07/2003
Reviewers Rating: Good
The Rendevous Bay Hotel has a beautiful setting, on a small cove a bit protected from the larger Rendevous Bay. We stayed in both a ground floor beach villa and an upstairs beach villa in May 2003. We did not even see the insides of the other units. So all comments apply only to the beach villas.

The great part of these beach units is that they are right on the beach, within 25 meters of splashdown. You can walk right out of your ground level unit onto the beautiful sand and into the warm blue surf in less than a minute.

The bad part of these beach units is that they are a bit tired, very modestly furnished, with virtually no amenities. For example, no shampoo, and no safe in the rooms. Outside, the foot washes are filled with sea water instead of fresh water, even though there's a spigot close by, much closer than the sea water. Odd.

The upstairs unit was more comfortable than the downstairs unit. Downstairs we had two double beds. I prefer a softer bed. My girlfriend prefers a firm bed. Even for her, these beds were uncomfortable - rock hard, as uncomfortable as I can remember finding in any hotel.

Upstairs we had a king bed that was much better quality, and much more comfortable. It was perfectly acceptable. The upstairs room also had tile. But who selected the tile? It was white, but with a high gloss finish. These tiles are extremely slippery when wet, and a little fine beach sand makes them even worse. What can they have been thinking when they selected this tile? (Later, maybe we found a clue. We visited family staying at Cap Jaluca, and saw that they too had white tile in their rooms. But their tile was textured, and had a good grip when wet.)

Both downstairs and upstairs rooms had AC, but we did not try it. We kept the windows open so the waves would lull us to sleep. The rooms have windows everywhere, and good ceiling fans.

The second floor porch overlooking the cove and St. Martin was wonderful.

Even though this hotel is relatively reasonably priced by Anguilla standards, it is not cheap. So I expect a certain minimum level of amenities and furnishings. I agree with the comment in one of the other reviews about the bathroom plumbing being dated. It is. The plastic tubs had anti-slip strips that were peeling off. The fixtures were badly in need of cleaning (or replacement). Someone else also noted that the inferior shower curtains were so tight on the shower rod that they were hard to adjust. The toilet seat in the upstairs unit was coming off the toilet.

Service was very friendly. Bart, the Holland native who is the manager, made us feel welcome. Bart was high energy. Most of the rest of the staff seemed to be moving in island time, though with a smile. Big contrast to the staff at Cuisinart and Cap Jaluca, where everyone was hopping.

Breakfast at the hotel was acceptable. The coffee was very strong. Condensed milk is provided as a creamer, though regular milk was available for the asking. We did notice that we and others at nearby tables asked for waffles, but the waffle iron was broken. Lunch was fine. We did not have dinner at the hotel.

A few other points of comparison:

We walked five minutes down the beach. That took us to the Anguilla Great House. We looked in one room. It was a distinct step up from Rendevous Bay in terms of furnishings, finish and quality. The grounds were very nice, with a good looking pool. The only negative was the rooms are set back from the water further than at Rendevous, though still close. The facility looked in notably better shape than Rendevous Bay.

Another five minutes walk brought us to Cuisinart. This is a luxury class facility. The rooms are way above what you get at Rendevous Bay or the Great House, but so are the prices, maybe 2x to 3x. The grounds are gorgeous.

A few words on food and restaurants:

The best meal we had on Anguilla was at Oliver's Seaside Grill. The preparation was superb, and the portions reasonable. And the setting is fantastic, overlooking the water. Not inexpensive ($60/person with wine and no dessert), but the best value we found. Highly recommended.

Second best was Pimm's. The food was very good to excellent, though the portions were small. Expensive. Not as good a value as Oliver's, which is just a short drive away.

Third best was George's in Cap Jaluca - almost as good as Pimm's.

Tasty's was very good for breakfast, and service was good.

Smokey's was fair. The food was okay, but the portions tiny. My girlfriend thought her vegetable serving might be just a garnish. Loud, obnoxious music made conversation difficult. Avoid.

The Old House (right near the airport) was lousy. We had only soup and salad for lunch, so we did not try much of the menu. But the seafood soup was horrible - the only fish in it seemed to be fish skin, and the flavor was awful. Portions tiny and prices high. Go hungry rather than go here.

Andy Yett

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