Le Grand Courlan Spa Resort - Reader Reports & Opinion
Our Review Of Lgc: 27.12.05 - 02.01.06
Like many people we set off to LGC with a bit of trepidation, as we had read such scathing and often disappointed reviews on a few websites.
We paid a lot to stay for just 1 week over New Year as it was peak season so we were worried we would be disappointed with our choice. The tour op had described as 'a beautiful first class resort to relax and unwind'.
On balance, we were pleasantly surprised although our expectations were lower given the 'bad publicity'.
Overall review - enjoyable holiday hotel and good location but have to say not worth what we paid - as not the first class 4* resort promoted.
More detailed review for those in 2 minds / thinking about booking ....
We have travelled widely for business and leisure and have stayed in many varied types of accommodation from - hostels whilst backpacking - to 5* hotels. We have also stayed in the Caribbean before so appreciated the standards are not 'Far East' luxury or Dubai type marble and flash! We tend to like the more rustic locations we have experienced so were open minded.
Good location and great views. Public beach a bit disappointing - bit messy with broken / limited number of sun shades, which given my very fair skin and the fantastic 30 degree sunshine, meant we couldn't use the beach at all during the week.
The hotel staff we found to be friendly, if you made the effort 1st to get the ball rolling and if you were polite when they served you - as should be expected. Good manners are after all free even if you are a paying guest! In particular, Dion in the Breezes bar and Valerie in the restaurant were warm, friendly and absolutely fantastic.
Dinner was a la carte every night except New Year's Day - when all 3 meals were buffet style. Can understand as people were coming and going at different times, as and when they surfaced after the previous nights celebrations! Breakfast and lunch were buffet style every day. Did not find the food to be bad quality or cold as some reviews suggested.
Special notes on the Caribbean
Please to say there was no hint of cat pee at the bistro although offending cats did hang around encouraged by the guests who kept feeding them!Despite the numerous notices from the hotel stating not to feed them!!! We like many guests found the cats very cute - who wouldn't - but we don't do fellow guests or the hotel any favours by encouraging them to hang around the food and pool areas. They don't miss a trick in trying to 'butter you up' to feed them scraps - no wonder they looked so well
The Caribbean Bistro was not open at all for dinner which was bizarre as they kept showing a menu but then it only opended for lunch. Hotel was not overly busy so perhaps this was why.
The hotel made a real effort for New Year's Eve with lots of extras although they did sneak an extra 'Gala Dinner' charge in without telling you in advance! Only about £15 for 2 people but given the meal was same as usual nightly a la carte fare and they didn't include any extra drinks like champagne for free - just seemed a bit cheeky!
Entertainment was typical resort standard and all inclusive seemed good value given all the meals included - breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, canapes and 3 course dinner, PLUS cocktails and unlimited premium spirits and wine by the glass. And of course the fantastic spa treatments. Worth it and a highlight of my day each day!
Some other guests voiced to us their disappointment with lack of activities taking place due to staff shortages. Only pool volleyball (daily), yoga/mediatation (seemed to be alternate days), beach football (some days) and power walk (some days). We didn't mind as we wanted to chill with a good book but for the more sporty this seemed to be very disappointing.
The decor/public areas including the pool and bedrooms are showing their age and looked a bit tatty and in need of a good refurb.
So our overall feeling about this hotel was it had 4* facilities with the pool, 3 bars, restaurants and spa, etc, but was really only a 3* standard.
Just returned from LGC on friday,had 2 fantastic weeks.Staff very good hotel rooms very nice, mine was room 303 fantastic views.Food was good especialy the currys at lunch time in the bistro.The hotel was less then half full whilst there so quiet.Saw a turtle the first day snorkling by the rocks under fort bennett.The sea was fairly rough so be careful,I did some bogie boarding and got wiped out a few times.Hired a car from Sheppy for a few days very good rates, and a free car upgrade he gave me a 4X4 for $50 a day . Went to arnos vale best place to snorkle a few times and snorkled with a turtle for nearly an hour,saw turtle both days i went, and a dutch guy told me he also sees them every time he goes in. It was clear in places but due to the sea being rough along the cost most places were poor visablity especial englishmans bay zero visablity when i went.The rain forest wes excelent went on private tour just my wife and i and saw every bird the guide was looking for including the white tailed saber winged humming bird sitting on a nest.I will put full details of our guide Kelton on trips part of forum.Nylon pool was nice, angel reef and buccoo reef was ok but saw a lot more at arnos vale and also at out local beach under fort bennett on clear days.The people were very friendly Giselle on the pool bar is fantastic say hello to her as she gets upset at people that cant be bothered to say hello and thank you.All in all Tobago is a beautiful place i enjoyed it beter then barbados less tourists and more to see and do,so unspoilt.I would go back to LGC with out any problem and hope to return one day maybe next year
Any questions give us a shout and i wil try and help.Found so much info from this site and forums keep up the good work all. PS dont forget to feed the koi in the pond a few small rolls of bread should do the trick some one will have to do it now that i have gone,(my daily job) they are allways hungry not sure if they get fed Oh yes went to argle waterfall a must, but be carefull the walk is a bit dodgy and i can see an accident happening. The old walk path was washed into the river and a new one was constructed, slippery in places and plenty of rocks under foot to twist an ankle
Two whole new experiences, booked a holiday to Tobago and this is the first time i have used a forum!!
We have booked to stay at this hotel (Le Grand Courlan) and i read on the forums that it is worth booking the treatments, that are included in the holiday at least two weeks before we go - any help with how i go about this would be fab?!?!
Also if anyone has places that are a must see whilst we are there that would be a great help too?
Impending Visit To Le Grand Courlan
My husband and myself are off to Tobago on November 10th to the Grand Courlan. This will be our first visit to Tobago and am getting very excited now but my husband won't let me get my suitcase out till the 5th
Just wanted to ask a quick question - I am never quite sure whether you should leave the maid a small tip every day or just one at the end of the stay - is there any particular etiquette on this. Also is it better to tip in TTD or USD?
Congratulations on this website - have been reading it every week for the last 6 weeks now.
Lgc Visit Report
My Good lady friend and I have just returned from a 2 week stay at LGC and I can safely say that it was the best holiday we have ever had the good fortune to have.
We initially left the UK slightly apprehensive (to say the least) over some reviews written here and on other sites about the hotel, but once we had arrived I really do wonder what some people perceive when they see the world!
The hotel itself was great. no end of painting and sprucing up was being done whilst we were there, with no incovenience to ourselves. It is clear the hotel is cared for and valued by the staff. Not the run down place some of the posts made it sound. The staff themselves were something else, with "Dion" behind the bar being one massive character we will really miss.
Our room was great (garden view, although we had a clear view of the beach and sea), although the aircon was a little noisy some well placed wadding helped quieten a small vibration. That's pretty much it for gripes, our only other complaint was that the holiday lasted only 2 weeks and not 4!! I would not recommend the Jacuzzi room as their outlook is limited and the rooms seemed a bit dark and claustrophobic.
We made some fantastic friends and toured around the island. With one guide we met on our travels informing us that he thought the LGC was the best resort on the island, he was in the process of showing some guests of the Rex Turtle Hotel around who by all indications had been having a terrible time!
The tan is starting to fade but I hope the wonderful memories do not!
One thing that has been written on this site before and held so true in my mind, if you go expecting "Dubai style" subservient staff and polished marble you'll be dissapointed. Bear in mind this is the Caribbean where things are done at their own pace and marble is pretty hard to come by! Having said that you would be mad I think to find the holiday disspointing. Everyone we met there loved it and enjoyed every minute.
The hotel, beach, staff and whole holiday was great- don't worry you will not be disappointed. If anyone has contact with anyone in the hotel over in Tobago please pass on our message of thanks and regards- we will definitely be coming back!
I hope that this review is of use to somebody.