Beach View, on the west coast of Barbados and the the top rated hotel on Barbados as I write, is lovely. But it is not the best hotel on Barbados, not even close. It is a Trip Advisor Best—a TABBY—which is not the same thing.
The eastern coast of Barbados is beautiful, with cliffs, more or less secluded beaches and a few charming hotels. But the beaches, although suitable for surfing, are rough and are not well suited for swimming, snorkeling or other water sports. The beaches in the south are not as beautiful and still windy. The hotels on the southern coast, and the coast more generally, greatly lack in charm. By far the nicest beaches on the island, warm and calm waters, lots of sand, good facilities are on the west cost. The coast, from Bridgetown north through Holestown and beyond, is lined with about a dozen high end resorts directly on the beaches. Some look a little shabby. Some do not. But they are universally expensive: So far as I could figure out, there would not have been a room directly on the beach on the west coast for less than $800 a night.
Beach View is not directly on the beach. It’s across the road from a small beach that is itself adjacent to the beaches where the more expensive resorts are located. But Beach View is also less than half the cost of the hotels directly on the beach. Although I would be astonished if anyone really thought it the best hotel on Barbados, regardless of cost, it may well be the best bargain on Barbados.
The virtues of the beach Haven: large suites (all with living rooms and kitchens, some with multiple bedrooms, making it well suited for families or groups of friends); good management; excellent standards of cleanliness; good views from the second story apartments and even better views from the third story; a nice pool; a terrific location, right across the road from a beach (with, by the way, excellent snorkeling in the coral just to the left of the beach, accessible without having to swim more than a few feet, let alone getting on a boat), near some terrific restaurants (the roti joint, just north for casual lunch or dinner, Cariba just south for an excellent upscale meal in a casual setting).
The downside: It isn’t directly on the beach and the beach across the road (itself exposed to the road) is not as nice as the beaches just north and south. There is also significant noise from the road, not awful but noticeable when sitting outside or by the pool. The facilities are also limited—a restaurant that serves breakfast and lunch but not dinner, no exercise room.
Would I stay at Beach View again? Sure, unless I won the lottery (a big pot) in which case I would shell out $800 to $1900 a night for Sandy Lane or Treasure Beach or the House. More likely, I would not go back to Barbados at all. I would look for an island (Culebra would be one choice) with better beaches, less development, and lower prices.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Beach View is a family run self-catering hotel, located on Barbados's beautiful West Coast. All suites feature full kitchens and open plan living and dining areas offering fantastic ocean or garden views. A large communal pool area with separate adult and children's pools, bistro style cafe, rooftop bar, in room grocery stocking, airport transfers and a range of other convenient services combine to provide all the ingredients for a totally hassle free holiday. Winner of Traveler's Choice award for 'Best Service' 4 years running! ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Beach View Saint James
- Beach View Hotel Saint James
- Beach View Barbados/Saint James Parish