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“Not a luxury Vacation”

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The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection
Ranked #5 of 14 Hotels in Paradise Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 9 April 2012

This vacation is not what I expected, the use of the term luxury is frequently used to describe rooms etc., but it really does not apply here. This is a good place for a young family to vacation, but a bit painful for parents with expectations of a relaxing luxury vacation. The room, an ocean suite, was very nice, a great view, and gave us some space for the time that we were there. Unfortunately a loud alarm would sound for hours when apparently a "pump" failed?? This happened a couple of times and it sounded like having a fire alarm on our porch. We were on the 9th floor... The response from different staff varied greatly from helpful to dismissive. A bit frustrating.

Do not book airport transportation through the hotel. I booked a “luxury SUV” and had to wait in line for about 45 minutes on a hot day to be met by the equivalent of a dirty cab. I provided flight information etc. and expected someone to be waiting for me. This trip was priced at $135 each way when a cab is $35 and you don’t have to wait on a crowded sidewalk for 45 minutes talking to confused teenagers. They promised to remove the trip from my bill, but did not. I took a “cab” on the way back and it was literally nicer than what I had arranged there. This was my first experience during my stay with overpaying and having services under-delivered.

Don’t plan on checking in until after three. If you arrive early you will be told to come back in 30 minute increments until after three, expect it to be ready at 3:30. We ate at Mosaic while waiting and the ambience and décor were as good as anywhere, but the food beyond eggs and fruit was universally disappointing. Very high prices for mediocre food could apply to all but the best restaurants there. For the good restaurants if you don’t have a reservation 30 days in advance you are out of luck. The best food that we had came from room service and it is as well priced as anywhere. Foodstore2go.com was a great recommendation from this website which we used and liked

My daughter enjoyed trainer for a day at the Dolphin Cay, but don’t get it confused with the one at Disney. They only spend a short time with the Dolphins.

We took scuba lessons and went for a dive at a marine sanctuary, the highlight of the trip that I would recommend even for young teens, it is amazing. Do not do scuba in the lagoon it is loaded with sea lice and I saw a mother trying calm her daughter down, she was loaded with the painful bites.

If you want a chair by a pool or the ocean bring some personal effects to place on them before 8:30 or you will literally not find a place to sit at the beach or pool. The reef beach is the nicest beach.

If you have a young daughter please go with her on the lazy river to prevent some aggressive flirting by the local lifeguard staff, it was uncomfortable to watch.

Room Tip: Get a deluxe ocen suite if you don't mind the price, the view is incredible and the porch is ver...
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  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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5  Thank NycFamilyof4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,093 - 1,099 of 1,635 reviews

Reviewed 5 April 2012

Just returned from another great stay at The Reef, Atlantis. Although expensive, the place is well appointed and comfortable. We stayed for 9 nights in a one bedroom suite and were able to have food in our room (full kitchen), do our laundry (washed bathing suits each night) and had two full bathrooms. This for only three of us. We have comfortably had four in this room in previous years as the couch opens up to a queen sized bed. Also available at request are aerobeds, perfect for kids.

We ate at a lot of restaurants at Atlantis and a few outside. The best ambiance and food was at Cafe Martinique where our table of eight had a relaxing, delicious meal in an old "plantation" style room. Excellent service. We felt rushed at both Seafire Steakhouse and, especially Dune where we were disappointed. Dune is located at Ocean Club at the One and Only down the road. We had eaten at the Courtyard Restaurant there in previous years and thought we would try Dune. Totally disappointed. We were in and out of there in less than one hour (from our 8:30 p.m. reservation). Mesa Grill was good as always as was Chop Stix.

We ate meals in town three times, once at Cafe Matisse (really good except for the gruff attitude of the owner upon entering), Luciano's (always good) and Blu (totally sucked....do not go ever!), and had lunch at Brussels Cafe (excellent service and food) The cost to eat in town is significantly cheaper than at the Atlantis.

Pools and Aquaventure were fun for all of us, including the adults....love that river ride.

Staff is friendly and attentive throughout the resort.

If you don't mind paying a little extra, this is a great family experience.

Room Tip: Ask for "ocean/pool view" for excellent view of pools, ocean/point and Atlantis itself.
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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5  Thank tickledpink88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 April 2012

I am here right now at the Reef in my one bedroom suite, listening to very loud construction of some sort. Just paid twenty dollars so I could log onto the internet and find an off-site snorkeling adventure for my daughter, who had been deeply disappointed to learn that everything she wanted to do was sold out. "I don't know," said the concierge when I asked what she could do instead. She didn't say she didn't care but that much was obvious.

That is one of the biggest problems here. Forget about the fact that my "harborview room" looks out on a parking lot, everything costs too much and I am used to paying a lot, there are so many lines, the food is just okay, etc. The people here do not care. They don't even smile, most of them, or look you in the eye as they are taking your money. $27 for a small bag of gummy worms.

My daughters had been dying to come here for years. At our $200 barbecue dinner last night (the only restaurant where we could get a reservation), one said, "It's the kind of place you go to once, to say you've been."

Her older sister said, "It doesn't feel like another country at all. It feels like we are in a mall in Disney World."

Now I am about to go down and wait on line for about thirty minutes so I can get a cup of coffee until the girls wake up, get my bracelet and put some towels down so we can have a seat at the Reef/Cove pool, and then we can stand on line and get our $100 buffet brunch. Actually the brunch is not bad. Perhaps the biggest problem here is all the people coming from cruises for the day. Hard to say. But I won't be coming back and I am glad my kids now understand why we were reluctant to book a vacation here.

Room Tip: Cove has nice rooms.
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  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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11  Thank seasoned28970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2012

Atlantis is amazing for families. The food and the service are shoddy at best. Food and drinks are pricey and a mandatory 15 % gratuity is added to purchases

Room Tip: Higher floors are nicer
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank cincifoodie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2012

We traveled to the Atlantis-The Reef for a family vacation in March 2012. Stayed for 6 nights in a Studio Ocean View suite. I read many reviews before picking The Reef.

In a nutshell:

Ocean View Room: Very Good! But very pricey! We stayed 6 nights for over $800/night. It was an efficiency which was great for my 6 month old. It had a microwave, dishwasher, cooktop burners, refrigerator, mini bar, sink, and all the dishes and silverware you would need. And anything that you did need could be purchased at the store in the lobby such as baby food, dish detergent, diapers, etc. The bathroom was large with a great tub and separate shower stall. A crib was brought up with sheets. They were supposed to offer you a care package for the baby that Johnson and Johnson has teamed up with the Atlantis to offer free of charge. I had to call for that. They never gave it to me ahead of time with the crib as promised. My only main complaint is to make sure that Housekeeping has towels ready for your room before they clean it. Otherwise you may be calling multiple times to "prompt service" line (38) to get them. Maids were extremely nice! Left large tip.

Grounds: Gorgeous! The water rides were a hoot. Pools were beautiful! Beach was wonderful! Assortment of bars and restaurants were great! The Dig and Shark exhibits were awesome if you love sea life!

Pool Service: The pool food and bar service was awful! If you were lucky enough to get someone to come over to you, it took about an hour to get your food or bar drinks delivered. And you may not get everything you ordered the first time around although, tips are automatically on your bills. You are better off going to the bar to get your food.

Front Desk staff: Excellent! Especially Shandri!

Room Service: Very slow and food not that great - eat out! Some great restaurants!

Baby Stroller friendly: Not at all - so bring a baby carrier. So many stairs!

Overall - I would have given The Reef an excellent rating except for the towel and pool services issues. For what you pay-The Reef needs to fix a couple things especially if they intend on keeping up with the new property being built by Fall 2014 - (Crystal Palace) which will be in direct competition with Atlantis.

I will be rating all Restaurants / Bars / Babysitting separately!

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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9  Thank DeeDeeGirl007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 March 2012

My wife and I have stayed at Atlantis three times and the Reef the last two times. Don't waste your time at Coral or Beach Towers, they are a cheaper subpar area of the resort. The Reef is very quiet as many of the rooms there are condos that have been sold, and are often empty so our floor was nice and quiet. The Reef is at the far end of the resort and a nice break from all of the busy parts of Royal Towers including the casino, water park, etc. Those areas are easily accessible by foot or a shuttle runs every 15 minutes or so, make sure your are on the correct shuttle or you will end up being taken to another area.

The food is expensive, and if you want breakfast you better get there early. All of the buffet breakfast locations, i.e. Mosaic, were great but get very crowded and you will stand in line for an hour to get breakfast, take my advice and get there early. All of the restauraunts in the marina are part of Atlantis and most are pricey. Get the meal plan and you will save yourself some money.

We had a private limo the last two trips and it was reserved threw the resort. Each time the limo was not waiting when we got to the airport and we had to jump threw several hoops to get a limo that we paid $250 for, not good service. However, the ride is at least 35 minutes from airport to resort and many taxis don't run AC so it is hot in the summer unless you get a private car. Also, we had our driver stop at a local grocery store in Nassau before crossing the bridge to Paradise Island, we ran in and stocked up on food and a case of bottled water. This kept us from spending as much during the week we were there on food.

Try the Poop Deck for dinner, fresh seafood just across the bridge from the resort. The locals rave about the Fish Fry which is a strip of local restaurants though we never made it there.

Stay at the Reef or the Cove, they are the most private and the beach is less crowded and relaxing there, move farther down the beach and you will get sick of locals hitting you up for a jet ski ride, parasail, or selling souvenirs. Good luck.

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Resrcb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2012

I took my family to the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas for Spring Break and it was great. It was easy to fly direct from Washington DC and the Bahamas airport is very easy to navigate, plus customs is on the Bahamas side so that cuts down on your arrival time back in the States.

We chose to stay at the Reef since it seemed to have bigger rooms and was newer than the Royal Towers. I am happy with my decision. We had a one bedroom Harbor View Suite which was great because it had a separate bedroom, living room and a nice sized kitchen with a Refrigerator and Freezer, with allergies that is huge. I have two young girls (8 and 3) and both have life threatening food allergies. We were treated very well throughout our stay and they were able to handle our food allergies pretty seamlessly. My girls loved the water park, rapid river, lazy river, and slides and we did that most of the time. My 8 year old also did a swim and feeding with a Sea Lion with my wife which they thought was amazing. The Atlantis is also essentially one big aquarium, with Sharks (Reef, Hammerheads, Nurse), Rays, Barracuda's, Coral, Fish, etc... Very cool for adults and the kids. I didn't play golf this trip but they do have a golf course within the resort as well.

One caveat this place is very expensive. It isn't just the rooms, but the restaurants, room service, etc... will cost you a pretty penny.

Room Tip: They have tons of choices the Royal Towers is the most central of the large resort, the Reef is esse...
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank phillip_norton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection

Address: 1 Casino Drive, New Providence Island
Region: Caribbean > Bahamas > New Providence Island > Paradise Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Paradise Island
#2 Family Hotel in Paradise Island
#2 Casino Hotel in Paradise Island
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Paradise Island
#4 Spa Hotel in Paradise Island
#4 Luxury Hotel in Paradise Island
Price Range: $460 - $1,121 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection 4.5*
Number of rooms: 497
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located directly on Paradise Beach, guests of The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection enjoy miles of white sand and ocean in their backyard with all the wonder and excitement of Atlantis on their front doorstep. Our Bahamas resort hotel features studios, one and two bedroom suites that offer all the conveniences of home with a full kitchen or kitchen area complete with linens, cookware, table settings, refrigerator and private balconies with water views. Guests of The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection enjoy a semi-private pool, shared only with The Cove Atlantis, Autograph Collection and a Starbucks lounge. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Reef Atlantis Hotel Paradise Island
Reef Atlantis Paradise Island
The Reef Atlantis, Autograph Collection Paradise Island, Bahamas

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