Carlisle Bay

Antigua, Caribbean

The hotel

A natural harbour in the most remote corner of the island, defined by a fine crescent of sand, is straight out of an ideal Caribbean press release. The lush countryside, the warm disposition of the people and genuine hospitality is what distinguishes Antigua from other Caribbean islands. Its turquoise waters are surrounded by emerald green hills and plenty of swaying palms, perfectly framing this all-suite hotel. Guests reap the benefit of the proprietor’s assured taste and magnificent attention to detail, from the lights that illuminate the garden at night, to the abundance of orchids and the custom-made furniture and interiors. Look out for Super Chill Out packages throughout the year; with yoga, water sports, tennis, children’s club, afternoon tea and meals at four tantalising restaurants all included. This is the best way to experience Carlisle Bay!

Amenities

  • Bar
  • Spa
  • Swimming Pool
  • Kids Club
  • Internet Access
  • Restaurant
  • Kayaking
  • Hobie Cats
  • Scuba Diving
  • Snorkelling

Where is it

Nestling on the magnificent undeveloped south coast of Antigua — set in a sweeping bay on a ravishing beach with a backdrop of rolling hills and lush tropical rainforest. Transfer time from Antigua Airport: 30 minutes.

Hotel information

87 spacious, contemporary suites. Cool, calm, luxurious interiors, each with a private balcony or terrace and breath-taking ocean views. Garden Suites are spacious open-planned suites with a large bathroom, steps down to a separate living area and terrace or balcony with tropical garden or partial bay views, with 1 king-size bed sleeping maximum 3 adults, or 2 adults and 1 child.

All Inclusive option: includes full breakfast, three-course lunch at Indigo on the Beach or at the restaurant by the pool, Ottimo!, daily afternoon tea, 3-course dinner from the à la carte menu at Indigo on the Beach, Ottimo! or East restaurant. Drinks including all cocktails, spirits, house wine, beers and soft drinks. Premium spirits and wines are excluded from the fully inclusive rates and may be purchased at an additional charge.

Half Board option: includes 3-course lunch and coffee selected from the à la carte menus at Indigo on the Beach, East, Ottimo! and the Jetty grill (adults
only). Does not include beverages.

Ocean Suites have a balcony with views over the gardens to the ocean, with 1 king-size bed sleeping maximum 3 adults (children must be 12 years and older).

Beach Balcony Suites have beach views, master bedroom with 1 king-size bed, and second bedroom with 2 single beds, sleeping maximum 3 adults.

Bay Suites are oceanfront, adult-only suites featuring a four-poster king-sized bed and a beachside location, sleeping maximum 2 adults.

Beach Terrace Suites are located with direct access onto the shoreline. All Beach Terrace Suites have a spacious open-plan layout, 1 king-size bed with living area plus an additional second bedroom or study. Some have terraces (ideal for small children), others are with a balcony on a higher floor. Sleeping maximum 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.

Carlisle Suites have large sitting area which extends onto an outdoor terrace, 3 en-suite bedrooms and can sleep maximum 6 adults or 2 adults and 4 children with a central waterfront location. Carlisle Suite A also has a kitchen, and Carlise Suite B has an L-shaped terrace with uniterrupted panoramic views.

  • Kids eat free: up to two children (2-12 years) receive a complimentary upgrade to All Inclusive when booking a Beach Balcony Suite or Beach Terrace Suite for travel between 23 Apr-14 Dec '20.

    Any applicable offers have been calculated into the prices shown. Offers may not be combinable.

  • Booking bonus: book by 14 Dec '20 and adults save up to 35% off the accommodation cost for travel between 4 Jan- 14 Dec '20. Discount not applicable on board basis supplements. Excludes Carlisle Suites.  

    Any applicable offers have been calculated into the prices shown. Offers may not be combinable.

4 restaurants: Indigo on the Beach serving grills and healthy salads in an informal setting, Pan-Asian cuisine at East. Poolside Ottimo! serves classic Italian fare from a wood-burning oven and the adults-only Jetty Grill serves fresh seafood and salads overlooking the resort’s Jetty and Caribbean Sea.

Swimming pool. Blue Spa* offers a full and comprehensive spa menu. Yoga and Pilates classes* available in the Garden Pavilion or on The Jetty at sunset (the first class is complimentary). 9 tennis courts with professional tuition upon request* and champagne tennis mixers. PADI dive school*, complimentary non-motorised water sports including snorkelling, kayaking, wind surfing and Hobie cats. Boat excursions*. Fitness centre. Screening room with movie nights. Creche*. Cool Kids Club with its own paddling pool, sand pit and jungle gym (2-6 years). Crew Blue activity programme for children 7-12 years, including raft building, five-a-side football, zip-wiring and star fish hunting (during school holidays).

Beauty Salon*. Complimentary WiFi access.

7 nights between 25 Dec-1 Jan.

* Denotes local charge.

Please note: children 12 years and under are not permitted to stay in Ocean Suites. Children under 15 years old are not permitted to stay in the Bay Suite room types.

Please note: hotel is closed between 22 Aug-9 Oct '20.

Rating summary

  • Location Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Sleep Quality Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Rooms Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Service Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Value Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Cleanliness Image of the Tripadvisor rating

Traveller rating

  • Excellent (793)
  • Very good (207)
  • Average (66)
  • Poor (35)
  • Terrible (28)
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Lovely beach but not much more

Oct 30, 2020 alexpanayi Harrow, United Kingdom

Stayed here over half term. This hotel was highly recommended by the travel agent but given high price left me a little underwhelmed. There were some positives but the negatives outweighed these. Beach - hotel is set on a lovely beach which is ideal for families. The beach is sandy, no pebbles and not too deep making it great for young… Read more
Stayed here over half term. This hotel was highly recommended by the travel agent but given high price left me a little underwhelmed. There were some positives but the negatives outweighed these. Beach - hotel is set on a lovely beach which is ideal for families. The beach is sandy, no pebbles and not too deep making it great for young children. For first couple of days it was hard to get a sun bed unless wanted to get up at 7am but then this improved and could find sun beds. Some water sports available on beach although travel agent had told us that this was included in price of all-inclusive but found that this was not the case. Swimming pool - a small pool, not many sun beds but again could find availability. Pool though was too deep for young children. Pool had cracked tiles and not a luxury pool at all. Rooms - very spacious but in serious need of a refurb. Paint outside was peeling, bathroom looked old and tired. When it rained heavily one night woke up to find pools of water in the room! Rooms though are mostly sea facing and therefore do have a fabulous view of beach which is a skip away. Restaurants - This was the most disappointing. There are 3 family restaurants and one adults only. We only tried the family restaurants and found food middling in all of these with East the Chinese being the best. Breakfast was poor. Travel lodge is better. In all restaurants the service was terrible. No waiter seemed in hurry. Orders were late eg breakfast took 45 minutes some mornings, sometimes some members of party didn’t receive meals at same time and had to wait. Problem seemed to be no-one was in charge and no one followed up. Waiters shrugged their shoulders and went on their way. We went all inclusive. In theory drinks including alcohol was free but you would be lucky to get 2 to 3 glasses of wine with your food they were so slow. Restaurants often ran out of food - one lunchtime the Italian ran out of pizza (and they only do pasta or pizza)! Front office - very friendly and tried very hard. We booked 2 interconnecting rooms which for some reason we didn’t get on arrival ( we got 2 rooms that we not connecting which for 2 adults with 2 young children wouldn’t work). Given hotel wasn’t full to capacity it took them a day to sort out connecting rooms and we were getting conflicting messages. At least they resolved in the end. Summary - for the price I can only give this a 2 or max 3 star. At a similar price point we are used to European luxury beach hotels eg Sani or Ikos and apart from the beach there really is no comparison. It’s a shame as given the beach location it has such potential. One we won’t be returning to or recommending. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Terrible experience

Oct 30, 2020 CrispyJack0904

Generally speaking the staff appeared untrained, uninterested and devoid of customer care basic skills. The building infrastructure needs significant investment and a regular program of maintenance and renewal to bring it up to acceptable standards. There is no mechanism for updating customers on issues and requests. We, along with many of the… Read more
Generally speaking the staff appeared untrained, uninterested and devoid of customer care basic skills. The building infrastructure needs significant investment and a regular program of maintenance and renewal to bring it up to acceptable standards. There is no mechanism for updating customers on issues and requests. We, along with many of the guests, had numerous issues every day and I think it would be fair to say the hotel is in a state of meltdown at the moment. The issues started before we arrived. They sent out an introductory email requesting customer information and initial restaurant bookings. I spent a long time completing this and requesting a reservation yet never received any form of response. I had to chase confirmation of the restaurant booking several days later just prior to arrival. On arrival we had to complete exactly the same information as I had already sent which was very frustrating and annoying. Then we watched as all the other guests arrived after us and were taken to their rooms, no explanation was ever given as to why we were waiting. We rang reception on a daily basis to replace our dirty cups, provide replacement coffee pods and replenish our water. Housekeeping usually took hours and sometimes several chasing calls before this was completed. Most days breakfast entailed waiting in a long line to obtain a table and then a long wait to order and be served. Often we had to ask to order and then chase up our food and drink multiple times with long delays between receiving items. Some of the food was the worst I’ve encountered in a long time. On arrival we reported a wasps nest on our balcony which meant it couldn’t be used. We never received any feedback and had to chase again the next day. Eventually Larry on concierge was sent late in the afternoon to remove the items that were attracting the wasps. He did this however we still had wasps the next day and despite chasing, no action was taken. In late afternoon we had to visit reception to find management to express our dissatisfaction who eventually sent someone in that evening to perform the remaining work. So on day 4 of our holiday we were eventually able to use our balcony. One night we decided to go to Ottimo which is their casual dining experience. Their activity brochure listed it as being open that night so we tried to book it only to be told it was take away service only. When we arrived back at the hotel that day we walked past Ottimo and noticed the tables were set and when we enquired were told we could indeed sit down for dinner! We then double checked that the live music listed in the activity brochure was going to be on in the Pavilion next to Ottimo and agreed to come back in an hour. An hour later we returned to find the Ottimo kitchen had closed and the live music was in a different restaurant! I tried to watch TV on the channels listed on the hotel guide however only a small number worked. I rang reception to find out if they should be working or whether the TV guide was wrong. The receptionist told me other guests had reported the problem and the cable company had been contacted however he had no idea when it would be fixed. The next morning I had the same issue and again contacted reception who informed me the problem was the weather and the cable company would be contacted at 8am that morning to fix the problem. When I followed up later in the day I spoke to a different receptionist who told me the cable company did not work that day and the hotel had just moved to a different cable package to save money and most of the channels on the TV guide were not now available. When I discussed this through with management they had no idea which, if any, of the tales I’d been told were true and agreed that if the hotel TV guide had a channel it should be accessible to guests. I never received a definite answer and just gave up. The biggest issue we had was the air conditioning. Every day it would turn itself off after a few hours and the green on light would start flashing. Every night we woke up sweating and had to restart the system. After lots of chasing up several times each day we had multiple visits from maintenance people over several days with varying levels of competence and communication skills. A lot of these visits were not whilst we were present so we had to chase up feedback constantly. This issue was never ever fixed and management never knew what was happening in respect of this issue. The situation got worse after a few nights when it became clear the air coming out of the system was now not cold. The maintenance people visited us again and told us we were imagining it. The next day we had to insist there was a problem only for the hotel to confess there was a problem in the whole of our block affecting 6 suites. The replacement parts needed to be imported and they didn’t know how long it would take. They then said a contractor on the island could visit the next day and was confident they could fix it. Management then gave us access to a suite where the air conditioning worked and suggested we sleep there overnight rather than go through the aggravation of a move when the a/c in our room should hopefully be fixed the next day. Management told us they would not be selling this room for the rest of the duration of our stay and therefore we could carry on sleeping in there or permanently move in. The next morning we chased an update which was inconclusive and decided to move to the other room. We were on the way to our room to pack up and noticed another guest had walked into the other room where we had spent the night. This was obviously unexpected and we contacted reception who informed us our new room had been rented to someone else! Management could not explain what had gone wrong and said they were going to meet to understand it. At this point they confessed the a/c problem had affected another 2 blocks (so 18 suites in total) and that all the rooms in the hotel were now full and we couldn’t move out of our room! That night we went out for dinner and management installed 2 portable a/c units in time for when we got back. The noise was incredibly loud and they didn’t have much impact on the room temperature. Their Heath Robinson installation also meant the balcony was unusable. We called it quits at this point and checked out one day early. Management effectively reduced our bill by 3 nights out of the 7 we stayed. I hope the above examples give you some idea of how bad things are at Carlisle Bay. There were lots of other issues however these were the main ones. Please don’t believe these are teething issues relating to the reopening of the hotel earlier this month. The hotel will need a major change management program over many years and at least one change of the senior management team to reach an acceptable level of customer service, let alone one that would meet LHW standards. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating A very disappointing fortnight

Oct 29, 2020 cjl1993 London, United Kingdom

I had hoped not to feel the need to write a review. We gave the hotel countless opportunities over the fortnight we were there to improve. Unfortunately they just seemed totally and utterly overwhelmed by the sheer number of issues pretty much all the guests were having - everyday, everywhere I looked I could see someone submitting a complaint to… Read more
I had hoped not to feel the need to write a review. We gave the hotel countless opportunities over the fortnight we were there to improve. Unfortunately they just seemed totally and utterly overwhelmed by the sheer number of issues pretty much all the guests were having - everyday, everywhere I looked I could see someone submitting a complaint to the front desk or a manager or the general manager. As a number of other guests did, in hindsight, after a pretty bad first week, we should have moved hotels. Maintenance is a big problem - it was very demoralising to see that a lot of the rooms and furniture were run down. The tiles that span the rooms and bathrooms appear cheap and in desperate need of updating, we had plaster rips in the walls and dust filled sockets that seemed to serve no purpose. There was limescale on all the metal in the bathroom, and grouting was mismatched and dirty. The rooms were not in line at all with 5 star design and upkeep and a classy refurb is a must. A couple of nights, despite being bitten by mosquitos and the bedsheets clearly being bloodstained, the sheets were not changed. Hot water was patchy (either too hot or too cold with limited ability to regulate the temperature) and the shower water pressure was rather weak. I am sure a number of reviews will address the dire situation with the air conditioning. Over the fortnight we stayed, there were pretty much daily power cuts, often multiple ones a day, sometimes for as long as 45 minutes. In a large number of rooms this would completely knock out the air conditioning and it wouldn’t come back after the power returned. This led to us spending two nights sleeping in different rooms (moving in our pyjamas in the middle of the night), and eventually moving rooms permanently just over halfway into our trip. Whenever the air conditioning went off, the room got hot pretty fast and the significant condensation on the floor tiles made them slippery and incredibly perilous. Our first week the resort was quieter and allowed us to spend a night in another room if needed. The second week, it was so busy the resort ran out of rooms with functioning air conditioning to be able to relocate people. This led to a number of groups picking up and leaving. And yet, they were still letting more and more people check in each day, despite knowing there was nowhere adequate to put them. We lost WiFI a number of times during the trip, often for a couple of hours at a time. The TVs were also incredibly inconsistent in terms of channel availability, and teams from the local internet and satellite supplier seemed to be onsite frequently with no resolution. The staff are very friendly and helpful, but are completely hamstrung by the lack of investment into the hotel, and frustration/lack of communication from the general manager, resulting in a lack of solutions and resolution to guests satisfaction. I must say Dionne (one of the duty managers) was fantastic at listening to us and taking on board our feedback and criticism and trying hard to help us and get our holiday back on track. She really tried to go above and beyond and was instrumental in us getting moved rooms and a discount on our bill at the end of our stay. I think if she was put in charge, guests would be less frustrated and better taken care of. She seemed to understand better than anyone the standards required if you are a member of the Leading Hotels of the World Group. Communication between teams (e.g. management and housekeeping, or the front desk and room service) really needs improvement. I lost count of the number of times we had to call and ask for water, despite reporting it to the front desk and management as well multiple times. Luckily Carlisle Bay has the best massage therapist in the world in Eve - three massages from her certainly assisted in stress relief and enjoyment. The food was also, for the most part, very nice. We particularly enjoyed eating at the Jetty Grill, which serves up lovely seafood and fish specials, and amazing BBQ ribs. That said, the food and drinks are definitely overpriced for what it is. We were on a half board package so noticed less, but had we not been I would not have been impressed at all. $9 for a large bottle of water with dinner every night was a particular gripe. Chris and Kris-Ann deserve a special shout-out for their wonderful dinner service. We enjoyed the excursions we booked to Stingray City, the zip lining and Shirley Heights, and would recommend those. The hikes arranged by the hotel with guides were also fantastic. The gym is very well equipped even if some of the machines could do with updating, but generally speaking everyone was happy with the gym. The hotel also often has issues with swarms of bugs. Other guests reported bee/wasp infestations in their rooms, and some nights sandflies swarm around the room doors and a number of them find a way into the rooms. I could tell some guests were mildly horrified at discovering this, even though the heavy duty bug spray provided kills them instantly. Unfortunately however much personal bug spray/repellents you put on you will get bitten extensively, so prepare for that. We came home eugh at least 25 bites still on our person each!! The water sports team seem pretty disinterested in having guests sign up for activities, and I know families that tried to dive and go on boat trips often had silly obstacles put in their way, despite high prices charged for such activities. Carlisle Bay is a beautiful bay on a beautiful island and I would highly recommend Antigua for a holiday right now. The local people are super friendly, it is so pretty, and there are plenty of fun and memorable activities to do. However, I would recommend you stay elsewhere as Carlisle Bay has a huge amount of improving to do and I expect it will take a significant amount of time to get the hotel back to a level that reflects their status and price point. It seems inevitable they will lose their Leading Hotels of the World status. My heart breaks as most of the staff are wonderful, but the top level of management and ownership really let’s them down. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating So disappointing

Oct 27, 2020 Leslieontour

Came here to escape COVID etc. Location is great. Rooms are ok. Staff are friendly. BUT service levels are terrible (you can wait 40-60 minutes for a drink or a food dish, often there is no-one around to even take an order, can't trust the accuracy of any request or booking), food quality is poor: stodgy, old fashioned dishes indifferently… Read more
Came here to escape COVID etc. Location is great. Rooms are ok. Staff are friendly. BUT service levels are terrible (you can wait 40-60 minutes for a drink or a food dish, often there is no-one around to even take an order, can't trust the accuracy of any request or booking), food quality is poor: stodgy, old fashioned dishes indifferently served. A real sense of collapsing morale and pride. Very sad. The General Manager acknowledged all of the above and offered us a free stay at a later date. I declined. Holidays are too important to get wrong twice. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Terrible experience.

Oct 27, 2020 Hils1010 Nantwich, United Kingdom

In my opinion, this hotel should not be part of the Leading Hotels of the World group. Do not be fooled in to expecting it to be of the same standard as other hotels. To start with a positive, the bay is beautiful. Stunning sea with turtles popping their heads up and a well maintained beach. This however is where the positives end. The hotel is… Read more
In my opinion, this hotel should not be part of the Leading Hotels of the World group. Do not be fooled in to expecting it to be of the same standard as other hotels. To start with a positive, the bay is beautiful. Stunning sea with turtles popping their heads up and a well maintained beach. This however is where the positives end. The hotel is looking shabby. Paint work and communal areas need a refurbishment. Every day, multiple times, we reported problems concerning basic housekeeping duties which would then take hours or on one occasion concerning a wasps nest, days to be acted upon. Service in the restaurants was terrible particularly at breakfast where the systems were chaotic. Waiting for a drink could take up to an hour by which time you may or may not have received the correct or incorrect food. However, our main issue was not having a fully functioning A/C system from day 1 up to day 4 when is stopped working altogether. We were given continuous assurances from Maintenance and Management that the problem would be sorted. A portable A/C unit was installed in our room on day 7 which was ineffective and like sleeping next to a jet engine. After not having had a decent night’s sleep since arrival and a stressful week, we checked out and went elsewhere. Guests continued to be checked in to the hotel despite Management being aware that 18 suites were without A/C and the hotel was full and therefore guests were unable to move rooms. The whole hotel experience was stressful and not conducive to a relaxing holiday. The systems and practices at the hotel are poorly managed and there is a distinct lack of communication between staff and guests and staff. Antigua is a stunning island with lovely people and great restaurants. Carlisle Bay will put guests off ever returning unless they have a huge overhaul of their practices. Read less