As it's right in the heart of Holetown, this beachfront resort is within walking distance of shops, restaurants, nightspots, historic sites, and the public bus to Bridgetown and Speightstown. All-inclusive rates include accommodations, meals, brand-name beverages, and a host of water sports (including waterskiing), as well as off-property sightseeing experiences such as a shopping excursion to Bridgetown.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Wi-Fi is available only in public areas (lobby, guest lounge, bar, restaurant, and poolside).
Rooms and suites are distributed among three blocks of three-story buildings. Standard rooms are in the block that backs up to the road, where late-night activity on 1st and 2nd streets may be a noise issue. Other categories are poolside, facing the gardens, or oceanfront. Deluxe and oceanfront rooms/suites have a mini-fridge stocked with soft drinks. (Fridges are available in standard and superior rooms upon request.) Two 1,200-square-foot penthouse suites overlook the ocean; each has a separate bedroom and sitting room and a verandah with a daybed and plunge pool.
YOU SHOULD KNOW No elevator in the standard room block; no kids under age 13 permitted in the penthouse suites; all rooms need some TLC.
Bathrooms are small, with the requisite toilet, a tub/shower combination, a pedestal sink, and a tiled shelf for toiletries. Most are in need of upgrading. Bathrooms in the penthouse suites have a double Jacuzzi tub and walk-in shower.
The entrance is quite grand, with a small pool in the circular drive and a porte cochère. Inside, there’s a reception desk and a guest lounge framed by a row of arched doors, with comfortable seating for people checking in/out or waiting for friends. A side table has a small collection of books and games for guests to use during their stay. A small boutique nearby stocks beachwear, beach toys, and sundries.
A small bridge crosses the free-form pool in the center of the property. Lush tropical foliage surrounds the pool, and there are sunbeds and umbrellas around its edge. Some ground floor rooms have immediate access to the pool. Attendants periodically bring cold drinks and chilled towels.
Get to the pool early (or very late) if you want a sunbed—there aren’t enough, and reservations not permitted!
Elements Spa offers a menu of rejuvenating massages (hot stone, aromatherapy, deep tissue, Swedish), facials, back treatments, body wraps, and salon services (therapeutic mask, eyelash extensions, soothing lip treatments, nail care) in a calm, nurturing environment.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Spa services cost extra.
Julian, the resort’s only restaurant, has a partially enclosed dining room that provides both alfresco and air-conditioned dining options. Breakfast is buffet-style; lunch is either buffet or à la carte; and dinner is “elegantly casual,” with white tablecloths and candles. In between, there’s afternoon tea.
There’s live music in the restaurant every night.
Guests can imbibe unlimited drinks at the bar, which is adjacent to the restaurant, with the exception of champagne, bottled water, and specialty wines.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The bar can get noisy late at night, an issue for nearby rooms.
The beach here is fairly narrow, like many west coast beaches, primarily due to erosion after autumn storms. Then the sand builds back up until autumn rolls around again. A row of sunbeds and umbrellas lines the beach and the boardwalk. Complimentary water sports include snorkeling, waterskiing, kayaking, standup paddleboarding, Hobie Cat sailing, and pedal boats.
A 2-hour trip along the coast, which includes snorkeling and swimming with sea turtles, and a glass-bottom boat ride, for those who prefer not to get wet, are both complimentary.
The resort is a block from the main road and an easy walk to Holetown and Limegrove Plaza, an upscale shopping mall with high-end boutiques and inviting cafés. Sunset Crest Shopping Center and Chattel Village (shops) are just a little farther south—and also within walking distance. Buses stop on the main road, heading north to Speightstown or south to Bridgetown. The fare is $1 each way. Taxis are always on call. A rental car makes sense if you want to explore the island on your own.
The resort is all-inclusive, so you’ve paid for your meals—but if you want to venture beyond the single onsite restaurant, step outside to 1st Street and try Ragamuffins (2-minute walk). Tiny, funky, and informal, you can dine on steak, curry, or Bajan specialties inside in the authentic chattel house or outside on the porch.
Farther afield, The Lobster Pot (10-minute drive)—on the beachfront in Speightstown—serves lobster in many styles, along with Caribbean specialties. Nearby, Juma’s Restaurant (10-minute drive) specializes in French and Thai cuisine—with a Caribbean flair, of course. Both host a Sunday afternoon beach BBQ with live music. Kids are always welcome. Just north of Speightstown, also on the waterfront, The Fish Pot (12-minute drive)—no relation to The Lobster Pot—is a great spot for lunch when heading out for a tour of the east coast or dinner anytime—fresh seafood, of course.
On 1st Street, just steps from the resort entrance, a lively evening is almost guaranteed at Red Door Lounge or Duke’s Night Lounge (2-minute walk). And on Sunday nights, Ragamuffins (2-minute walk), also on 1st Street, has a Drag Show that attracts a crowd and often spills into the street…sometimes until 3 a.m.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Mango Bay is a small, casual all-inclusive with lots of complimentary activities and convenient shopping, transportation, and nightlife—and restaurants if you want to eat elsewhere on occasion.