Turtle Beach - Reader Reports & Opinion
Just Home From Rex Turtle Beach
Post Recreated: Originally posted - 03 March
Having returned just yesterday I am still not quite sure which way is up, but will do my best to give my opinion of what I can say was a wonderful island.
The outbound flight was a bit of a 'mix-up'. We flew with Monarch and found the whole thing to be chaotic at best. The check in at Gatwick was somewhat strange with all Monarch flights being checked in together, so there were people with ski's, people with surfboards etc., all due for different flights all at the same place at the same time. After waiting for around 20 minutes someone realises they had booked the wrong person onto the wrong flight and we were told to join another part of the queue losing around 10 places (or another 20 minute wait) Thankfully a Cristal ski rep. saw what was going on and did her best to sort it out, but I have to admit my patience was failing at this point. The flight was via. Grenada, to allow people off and to collect some people returning. The people returning were allocated the same seat numbers of peeople staying on the plane for Tobago, which caused some 'playground' scenes, and 'handbags at dawn' tactics. The flight attendants had quite a job on their hands to sort everyone out and ended up telling people to just sit anywhere until the people staying in Tobago had left the plane and then the seating would be correct. I'm sure there must be a better way of organising this, as some people seemed very upset they couldn't sit at their allocted seats.
When we did arrive, it took over an hour to clear immigration, despite the fact there were only 6 people in front of us, and the last of my patience was truly being tested. As soon as we had cleared the airport any thoughts of stress were quickly removed by the locals waiting outside to offer taxi's to your hotel. They were all so very friendly and treated us like old friends immediately.
We stayed at the Rex Turtle Beach, and I have to agree with most of the other reports posted here regarding the hotel. It is badly in need of refurbishment, but clean and comfortable. Most of the staff were extremely pleasant, with the notable exception of one of the reception staff. There was a problem with the hotel water and a note was posted on the main notice board saying that until the situation had been resolved complimentary bottled water was available from the reception area. When we asked for some the chap told us we had to buy it from the shop. We told him about the note and he shrugged his shoulders and walked away. One of the other guests took the note down and gave it to him, and he promptly screwed it up and put in in the bin. It wasn't the cost of the water, but the whole principal that bothered me. The food was ok, but lacked variation, and I had some concerns as both raw and cooked meats were handled with the same utensils, but it was generally tasty enough and there was plenty of it.
The beach was wonderful and the traders very friendly and not at all pushy. I ended up buying most of my keep sakes from them, and especially one guy called 'Engine Bobb' that carved bird feeders, ashtrays and pen holders. They are stuning. I had a massage from Mary on the beach too, which after a hard days sun bathing (!) is very welcome and wonderful! I also had my nails painted on the beach by a lady called Rachel and would recommend this to any woman staying there!
Although only there for one week we took a total of three trips. We went to the rain forest with a guy called Peter Williams, who is very knowledgable about the local birds and plants. I wouldn't have missed this for the world, and will always remeber being so close to the humming birds. Awesome. We took a half day trip to Buccoo Reef, the Nylon Pool, Pigeon Point and No-Mans Land with 'Stumpy the Tuna Man', who was one of the jolliest people I have ever met. Again I wouldn't have missed this for anything or anybody, and will definately go again when I return. I am not the strongest swimmer in the world and he lent my a rubber ring for snorkelling so that I didn't miss out. I would have liked to spend longer at Pigeon Point as it appeared the tropial ideal, and on my return will spend a day there. Our final trip was with 'Frankies' and we took a days coastal tour past Castara, Enlighmans Bay etc. The sea was very rough on the way there but it was very worthwhile. The snokelling was better than at Buccoo Reef, which is saying something, and again they provide life jackets if you are not a great swimmer. The trip was finished off with a bbq at Paradise Bay, which was desterted apart from our trip (all 10 of us!) All in all it was another fantastic day.
We went to Sunday Scool which was great fun and my favourite evening of the holiday. The bands were great and we danced and partied with the locals as if we had been on the island for years. I am not joking when I say they are some of the friendliest and nicest people I have ever met. Everyone was just great.
A week was just not long enough and I will definately return again and again, although I'm not sure I would go back to the Rex. Whilt it has to have one of the best locations of the island as far as the beach is concerned, and it does offer excellent value for money, I would prefer to be a little closer to a main village/town and stay somehwere aimed at a slightly younger target, as most of the guests at the hotel seemed around retirement age.
Togabo has to be one of the best places I have ever visited for hospitality, beaches and general island beauty. It is just a pity to be home again so soon. Thanks for all the advice before I went and taking time to read this - its a bit long I know but I am so taken with the island, I can't shut up about it!
Rex, Blue Water Inn And Manta Lodge
Post Recreated: Originally posted - 12 March
Lots of concerns about Rex Turtle Beach coming up over past few weeks. Do you know if any of this filters back to the Rex group or tour operators using the hotel? It can't be doing them any good. However, we booked before we discovered this site and will make the best of it. It will be great - it's only somewhere to sleep and eat, the island itself is the real attraction. Went to the Dive Show in London recently and met up with Duane from Blue Water Inn and Sean from Manta Lodge. Thinking of taking a few days out of our inclusive package to stay at one or the other to do some diving. It would be lovely to have any comments about either accommodation or the diving outfits sited nearby.
Holiday Report 2 - Hotels 26 Mar 2003
Steve Wooler from Suffolk, England
Post Recreated: Originally posted - 28 January
This is an extract from my main report "Holiday Report 2 - Hotels" posted in the main "General Questions & Comment" accommodation forum:
REX TURTLE BEACH RESORT
The Rex Turtle Beach was a big disappointment. Despite one of the very best beach locations on the island, the 2Ĺ-star Rex Turtle appears neglected and uncared for. British readers will know what I mean when I mention Southend-on-Sea or Clacton. There seemed to be more beach traders than guests, but I have since been told that they host a traderís market on Wednesdays, which may have accounted for this. We will pay a second visit on another day before forming definitive views and writing our main mini-review. [Ed: A later visit confirmed that this situation was caused by the Wednesday traders market.]
We were unable to examine rooms at the Rex Turtle as the hotel has ignored numerous attempts to make contact. We invited the Rex Turtleís General Manager to provide us with a conducted tour of the hotel to ensure that we were fully aware of their features and facilities. Our emails have remained unanswered. We shall not allow our views to be biased by this snub, but it might give some indication of the hotelís attitude toward customer or public relations.
Rex Turtle Beach
Can anyone please advise me on the type/cost of food that is available at the Turtle beach, particularly breakfast and lunch? We intend to hire a car for at least a week of our two week stay, but from reading various posts it appears that there is not much within walking distance of the hotel for the 'non car' week!
Also are there any laundry facilities in the hotel? Many thanks in anticipation.
ps. like the new forum style, I'm a complete planning freak when it comes to holidays so this suits me down to the ground!!
My family and I had a two week vacation at the rex resort and I must say that it was well worth it. We have a boy and a girl aged seven and nine and they had a great time. The hotel has a kid's club that is from around 9:00 till noon, kids get to do alot of fun stuff there.
The hotel itself is not all that posh but you have a large room with toilet, bath and shower and a comfortable bed. Each room has a balcony or verander, and its amazing sitting there early in the morning and listening to the birds sing, some of them would come and eat right out of your hand if you offered them something.
The staff were all friendly and always ready to chat and offer any assistance possible. The food was great but you must eat out to experience the real local flavours. A great place to eat out is at Jemma's Kitchen and also at the Black Rock Cafe the latter of which is just a short walk down the beach or the main road.
The beach has vendors and traders, most of which are very friendly and polite. Mind you there are the odd one or two like the aloe vera man and the guitar man, but they basically leave you alone once you tell them a firm but polite no.
I must highly recommend Mary for her relaxing massage which was pure heaven, and her charmming cousin Rachael who does manicures and pedicures. Total bliss having your nails done on the beach, a very talented young lady Rachael is, she can do any pattern or design on your nails.Very professional.
Sunday school is a must and the kids can go as well since most of the entertainment starts quite early e.g steelpan, drummers etc.
My advice is total local. Very friendly people, do as much as you could with them if you want to get the real local experience.Trips from the tour guides on the beach were alot cheaper than the ones in the hotel and they were much more personalized.
We had a great time in Tobago staying at the rex resort and we intend to make it our yearly vacation spot. At present we are visiting Trinidad so look forward to my review on that when we get back to the U.K.