Blue Waters Inn - Reader Reports & Opinion
Blue Waters Inn Stay Last Week
Following three days at the Hilton, my wife and I headed north in our little jeep for three nights at the Blue Waters Inn. We were not disappointed. First of all, we were very happy to take Steve's advice and stay in the north of the island, as it seems so far and different from the lowlands/southern end. Speyside is a small and very friendly town... we had great food at some of the smaller establishments, such as the roti shop overlooking the football field, and in town. We met many locals while drinking Stag, and people really seemed to open up once we got past the whole tourist thing.
Now the hotel: The Blue Waters general manager Duane, greeted us like king and queen when we arrived and that part of the experience was indeed super. Duane seems to have a well-informed sense of what people want out of a trip to a place like the Blue Waters, and it shows. We had a room on the top floor of the highest building (the one with the tallest ceilings which I would surely request if returning), because our room was light and airy with a vaulted ceiling that made it feel very spacious. The room was always clean, and we almost never used the AC... just left the doors open to hear the birds, feel the breeze, and listen to the waves crashing right below our window. I am happy that I read on this site to request a second floor room... it made a big difference, not only in the ceiling, but on the first floor, people could certainly see in your room as they are walking by.
The location of the hotel could not be more spectacular... right on the water on a very scenic dramatic bay, with Goat Island and Little Tobago in full view. The water was not particularly clean to swim in, but I know it is attributable to the late lasting rainy season and all of the massive runoff and floods from the November storms and December rain. On a clear spring day in this bay, I imagine there are few places as beautiful.
Now the food... in fairness to the Blue Waters, my wife and I never ate lunch or dinner there, and breakfast only once. We like to try local food whenever possible, and we did this almost always (except for one great meal at the new and improved Speyside Inn restaurant where the dilligent new German owners have grand plans). When we were first going to go eat at the restaurant at the Blue Waters, we noticed a couple having a bit of an exchange with one of the waitresses, and they seemed very unhappy, so we decided to ride to town and see what we could find. And later that night, over some Stags in the bar, we were talking with a Brit who was staying there for a couple of weeks who admitted "no, the food here is not brilliant." Frankly, we took one look at the menu and had to be convinced that the food was not going to be too good. The menu was voluminous. There was so much on offer, that how could it be fresh? It was about 4-5 pages long, and offered so many items that we felt lost. I know people like variety, but it always seems to make more sense to me to offer fewer items that will be fresher and tastier.
We did have breakfast one morning, and frankly our experience was anything but pleasant. The two waitresses who reluctantly paid any attention to us served me horrible coffee (I switched to Nescafe), stail bread, and we really did feel like we were pulling teeth when we asked for anything. Needless to say, this confirmed us not eating dinner there.
HOWEVER, let me add, that apart from this, it was a wonderful hotel in a mind-blowingly beautiful setting, with a great, clean room, that was surely worth the $100 US we spent per night. Just the dining room needs some attention. Aside from this, we would highly recommend the BWI.
Thanks, Ernesto Blokosso
Blue Waters Inn - January 2005
Having driven over the top of the hill leading to the Speyside Lookout, and seen the mind-blowing panorama below us, we knew the BWI setting would be something special, and it is. Right from our arrival we got the impression of friendly and efficient team-work. All the buildings have been freshly painted, and the landscape team are continuing to repair the damage to the grounds from the November landslide.
None of the rooms are more than a few feet from the sea. Standard rooms are in two storey buildings on one side of the main building and on the other side there are one, two and three bedroom self catering bungalows. We started off in a top floor room – ask to go on the top floor if you like your privacy, because the beach-front path passes right outside the front of the ground floor rooms. Later in the week we moved to one of the bungalows – which was wonderful.
The beach is soft sand and the bay is incredibly well protected other than from the north-east. Sadly while we were there there was a lot of rain, so the water was very brown, but once you swam past this it was fabulous.
The catering suited us very well. There is a large breakfast menu to choose from, cooked to order; the lunch snack menu always included a local special dish (get there early!) and so did the dinner menu. The dining room is a bit hot, so we tended to have a one or two course meal out in the bar which is always cool. We know that some guests had problems with delays in the dining room in the evening and Duane told us that he was very short-staffed. There is a great range of cocktails which you can just about work through in the course of a week! Jemmas, Redmans, Speyside Inn and Manta Ray Lodge are all about 15 minutes walk away when you want to ring the changes. Don’t forget a torch!
Excursions to Little Tobago and the reef run from outside the hotel, and there are trails through the grounds with excellent birdwatching. We also went out for a long day’s birdwatching with Newton George - the highlight of the holiday.
We loved the BWI’s laid-back friendliness; the staff were lovely, and we had a wonderful time there. We are already planning a return visit.
It Was Great
Last two weeks we visited Tobago and stayed at Blue Waters Inn. You are right that it is a beautiful hotel. Friendly people and not so much tourist as in the south of the island. It was a good advise to bring a flash light for the walk to Speyside during the evenings. Good dinner at Jemma's. Try the lobster!
Also a trip with Newton George was amazing. All those birds you see. We did a tour with a local guide of the village, Marvin. He showed us the island and learned to eat roti. You should try! Thanks for the good advise for this hotel.
Ideas From Bwi Fans
Long time no post from me, but I have been keeping in touch with this great website.
Needless to say it's looking like another holiday in Tobago this year! Last year was my first time on that gorgeous island, and I really did fall in love.
My partner and I stayed at the Blue Waters Inn last time, and are looking to go again for one week, but maybe move to another location for the second. This is where I need some help: I loved BWI because of the location, the proximity of the rooms to the sea, and snorkelling right off the beach (essential). Is there another hotel that would cater to these needs elsewhere on the island that anyone can recommend - hotels or appartments for two?
In the meantime I will keep researching given all the info is here, but I thought it would be interesting to hear from people who also loved staying at BWI and maybe experienced another great place.
I would like to hear from people who have been to Speyside recently. How is the snorkeling at the moment? Did anybody see these great manta rays lately? Is it possible to see them at all without diving?
We love to snorkel and would welcome any tips about good spots of the coast and also with what snorkeling trips or boats are good.
Are there good maps of that area? What is the average price for a trip to the rainforest or to little Tobago? Wich guide do you recommend?
Any information about this area (Charlotteville to) is very welkom, I did read already everything on the net I could find...
We are going in July and staying in the Blue Waters Inn.
Tips about where in speyside to eat (at what your favorite is ) must be useful, reviews of the restaurant at the BWI are mostly not so great...
Last question, is is possible to walk or hike in the Northeast witout a guide? Is it very hot and muddy?Will we get terribly lost in the jungle?
I'm so looking forward to it...