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“can't return fast enough!”

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Grand Isle Resort & Spa
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Great Exuma
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 May 2012

We did a ton of research prior to this trip - not only about Exuma but also many other destinations in the Caribbean and beyond. We chose Exuma and Grand Isle based on the wonderful reviews, and the resort certainly lived up to the claims and recent Trip Advisor awards.

We had booked a cab ride through Grand Isle for a driver to pick us up at the airport. Unfortunately, we never saw the driver; although, it was easy enough to find another driver at the airport to take us to the hotel. We asked the driver to stop off at a grocery store on the way to the hotel. Would totally recommend this! More on this later.

We had chosen a one bedroom villa at Grand Isle since it was just the two of us celebrating our ten year anniversary. None of the overwhelmingly positive reviews could have prepared us for the reality. The room - or I should say, the villa - was immaculate! The view, the construction, the decor - all perfect and above expectations.

We loved having the full kitchen available to us. We had purchased eggs, bread, sandwich meat, sodas, etc. at the store, and it was so nice to be able to be lazy in the morning, making our own breakfast in our robes, and then going down to the fitness center and/or the pool area whenever we were ready.

Speaking of the fitness center, it was a great amenity. The treadmills (my preference as a runner) had a direct view of the beach, and my husband was pleased with the selection of free weights.

Many other reviews provide plenty of positive comments about the quality of the pool, pool bar and restaurant, so I won't repeat all of it, I will just agree. There seems to be conflicting opinions on the pricing, so I'll give you our opinion: we felt like the food was appropriately priced but the alcoholic drinks were overpriced. But this didn't bother us too much, since we had a fridge in our room and a liquor store a golf cart ride way.

Be sure to walk down the beach past Sandals to the two lovely beach vendors who sell jewelry and t-shirts. Even if you choose not to buy anything, you will enjoy chatting with the very nice locals.

And since I mentioned Sandals, we did take a quick ten-minute walk through the property. It looked nice enough, and I have nothing bad to say; however, my husband and I both agreed that we were very pleased with our choice to stay at Grand Isle. It just depends on what you're looking for. We were wanting a very low-key but luxurious place, and we fortunately found exactly what we were looking for in Grand Isle.

A few things we learned that we will do differently next time. 1. Plan any excursions in advance or at least the first day you arrive. We booked ours upon arrival for 3 days into our 7 day trip, and the rainy weather canceled it several times so that we never got to go. We wanted a group excursion rather than a private, and I got the feeling that private excursions took priority. 2. Plan to rent a car one or two days. We did not do this. We don't majorly regret this; however, we do see the benefit in doing this. The math is simple: $75 per day for a car vs. $100 round trip for a taxi. 3. The grocery store we went to on the way to Grand Isle from the airport had limited selection; downtown George Town has larger stores with better selection. Next time, we will rent a car on day two, and drive into George Town to stock up.

If you really are against renting a car, check with the concierge at Grand Isle about putting together a group taxi ride. We were able to do this one day, and it worked out great (met some very nice people too!) and allowed us to save a little money on the expensive cab fare.

We are looking forward to returning with extended family and trying out one of the two or three bedroom villas! One important tip: buy some - no PLENTY of - Ricardo coconut rum ... nothing like it, trust me!

Room Tip: can't imagine not having an ocean view. to me, you either have an ocean view or you don't go...
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  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank Melissa H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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726 - 730 of 967 reviews

Reviewed 30 April 2012

I just returned from a 5-day trip to Exuma. Although I have lived in and travelled to Exuma for almost 15 years, it was my first stay at Grand Isles. The homes were clean and beautifully appointed, with fine furniture, beautiful linens, and fully stocked kitchens: large fridge, coffee maker, dishware, cookware, etc. The onsite restaurant, however, was another story: typical slow, apathetic, snail's pace Bahamian service, inadequately trained staff, half-cleaned tables, and plenty of flies. It was not uncommon to have to wait an hour or more for somethiing as simple as eggs and bacon for breakfast -- which isnt a big deal, I guess, if youre on vacation and have all the time in the world!! But if you are there on business, or have a flight to catch, best to give yourself PLENTY of time in the restaurant beforehand, because chances are you are going to be there for a LONG time!! All in all, for the exorbitant prices they charge for their supposed "5-star quaity service", you would expect something much more than 2- star "fish fry quality service."

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled on business
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9  Thank bgaddmarve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 April 2012

Just spent a week at Grand isle. What a great week we had. The accomadations are second to none, the property is kept in incredible shape, the pool, restaurant, and pool bar were all top notch. The staff went out of their way to please.

Emerald Bay has to be 1 of the nicest beaches in the Caribean, if not the world. Sugar white sand and the turqoise blue water was breath taking. Looking forward to a return trip to Grand Isle ASAP.

Jim Ottawa

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Jim D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 April 2012

Grand Isle is a serene and impeccably maintained property. The resort has all of the amenities one could hope for and an exceptionally welcoming staff. Peter Nicholson's units are tastefully furnished and downright luxurious. (My own sheets pale by comparison.) The restaurant and bar are great and each villa comes with a fully equipped kitchen for times when you would prefer to dine in. In fact, I had no problem preparing dinner for 25 in the kitchen of a three-bedroom villa!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Jasmine N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 April 2012

My husband and I travelled to Grand Isle Resort in April 2012 and stayed at Peter Nicholsons condos.
This was by far the most beautiful place we have visited. The beach was beautiful, the water colours of Emerald Bay were magnificient, the resort itself was clean with friendly helpful staff, the food was above average,the pool was heated so even if the temperature was not hot you still enjoyed floating around. The condos were more self-sufficient then most people homes and the details to furnishings were top notch. Each condo came with a golf cart so getting around the resort or locally off the resort was not an issue. We took a boat tour with Tyrone to Fishermans Keys as well as ?? Island and were blown away by the continuous beauty each corner you turned. We also did a land tour of Tropic of Cancer and visited Santanas. All the locals were friendly and went out of their way to make sure we were enjoying ourselves. We also went to Chat and Chill and it was an experience we will always remember. This place boasts all amenities you will need for a wonderful vacation.

Room Tip: I don't think there is a a bad room at this resort.
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  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with friends
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5  Thank MicheleOttawa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grand Isle Resort & Spa

Address: Emerald Bay, Great Exuma
Region: Caribbean > Bahamas > Out Islands > Great Exuma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Great Exuma
Price Range: €349 - €868 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Isle Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 78
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on Emerald Bay in Great Exuma, The Bahamas, Grand Isle Resort & Spa is a stunning ocean front resort. The exclusive gated community comprises 78 luxuriously appointed 1- to 4-bedroom villas that range from 1,250 sq. ft. to 5,200 sq. ft. and offer a fully equipped kitchen, spacious living area, high-end amenities, and extraordinary views. Getting around the resort is quick and convenient, as every villa is equipped with a personal golf cart. Grand Isle is one of the finest resorts in the Caribbean and is ideally suited for family holidays, romantic getaways, destination weddings and honeymoons, or for simply enjoying the beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Isle Resort And Spa
Grand Isle Hotel Great Exuma
Grand Isle Resort & Spa Great Exuma, Bahamas

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