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“I Tried Again !,”
Review of CJ's on the Bay

CJ's on the Bay
Ranked #40 of 126 Restaurants in Marco Island
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: USD 10 - USD 40
Cuisines: American, Seafood, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Special Occasion Dining, Groups, Romantic, Bar Scene, Local cuisine, Child-friendly
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, After-hours, Delivery, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Description: CJ's on the Bay is the gem everyone is talking about on Marco Island. Featuring spectacular waterfront dinning overlooking beautiful Smokehouse Bay, CJ's is an ideal spot to relax and enjoy the ambiance of beautiful Southwest Florida.
Reviewed 6 April 2018

I really wanted to enjoy my meal at CJs because the setting is so beautiful. However, that said, it was awlful. I ordered a fish sandwich. Now on Marco you can get great fish sandwiche at many of the restaurants. This was not one of them. The fish was over done and dry. It didn’t even taste like fish. It had no taste at all. What a disappointment. I refused to eat it then went next door to Mangos and had an amazing appetizer which I will talk about in my next review

Thank Bernadette1352
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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81 - 85 of 1,879 reviews

Reviewed 6 April 2018

I'm pretty sure that we had the best waiter in the place. Marco took a picture of us with the water in the background, but not before taking a hilarious selfie first. We laughed at our table about it. The food was great, and the happy hour was phenomenal. Sadly, my mom's top shelf tastes are not on happy hour. My special that evening tasted phenomenal, and the view was gorgeous. I would love to go back next time I'm on Marco!

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Keeli E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2018

Heard from friends how "great" CJ's on the Bay was... which we found was not the case. Based on this, we made reservations for the day before Easter to avoid the "crowds." We were told that there were only two choices left, very early or very late. Upon our arrival (for our first time), nothing was marked, meaning there was no signage directing us to where CJ's was located. Using common sense, we walked toward the "water" and eventually found CJ's.

We checked in and were sat outside as requested. We waited over 20 MINUTES before anyone would acknowledge us. We noticed that the inside tables were 1/2 full and about the same outside, so I'm not sure why they only had two spots remaining for reservations? Finally, a server came over and told us "sorry for the mixup" and said she would be right with us. It should be noted that it really wasn't that busy and there were a lot of servers working outside. Anyway, a while later after we ordered, we received our drinks and then our salads. They gave everyone the wrong salad and even forgot my salad. However, since our server didn't really check back with us, I decided to simply not worry about it.

We received our food about 30 minutes later (not too bad overall), but found that my pork chop was very fatty and as other reviewers had noted, the vegetables were very overcooked. The rest of our party's food was average at best.

CJ's really can't say that it was due to "busy day" or "in season" since there really weren't a lot of customers when we arrived.

As the customers started to leave (remember that we were sitting outside), one of the servers shut off the warmers (the tall stainless steel towers with the flame burning inside for aesthetics and warmth). She didn't even ask us, but just shut it off and walked away, which I thought was pretty rude, especially since it was getting chilly.

Here's the bottom line:

1) Service needs improvement;
2) Views are nice, but probably better during the day;
3) Food quality average at best
4) Signage needs to be better
5) Attention to detail needs work re: servers and awareness of management

It really doesn't take much to impress us, but CJ's is a place that we will NOT return. There are MUCH BETTER restaurants with even better ambiance, character and views.

Unfortunately, we won't be back.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Michael E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jacquie K, Owner at CJ's on the Bay, responded to this reviewResponded 6 April 2018

Thank you for taking your valuable time to provide us such constructive feedback. My husband and I take great pride in CJ's and we are sincerely sorry you had a disappointing experience. We do continual improvement sessions with our servers and these points will assist us with reminders on our guests' perception of great service. Our vision is to provide outstanding guest service in a friendly relaxed atmosphere and I commit that we will continue to improve in these areas. I would love if you would give us another opportunity to provide you the experience you deserve. Please contact me directly at cjs@palsplaces.com to arrange for a future visit card. We would love another chance to make you a loyal CJ's return guest in the future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2018 via mobile

View was wonderful! Always can meet friends here! We sat outside at round bar. Place was packed as it was easter weekend ! We had great fun !

Thank E J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 April 2018 via mobile

I wouldn’t go here for the food, but it has a buzzing vibe with lots of outside seating overlooking a marina and a big bar outside. I would maybe go back to Have cocktails and an app. The menu is huge which for us is always a red flag as places with big menus don’t seem to do anything really good. Usually you find average and that’s what we got. My daughter’s steak (filet I think) was good and cooked properly. Everything else was ok, wouldn’t order again. My shrimp was over cooked and I didn’t finish it. The “mixed vegetables” were frozen veggies which I don’t even serve at home. The Wild rice blend again seemed something from a bag and not homemade. Service was ok. There was a big party there the same night which backed up things for everyone else. They were apologetic about that. The soups we had were very good. There are a lot of great restaurants on the island serving fresh, homemade food, so I would suggest trying some other places before here.

Thank staceyrebecca1220
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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