Bayview Villa - Review Page 1
Reviewed by Steve & Jill Wooler in February 2010
The house offers three self-contained self-catering holiday apartments – one on each floor. Each apartment has its own entrance and independent access. The property will be of particular interest to families and groups of friends as the whole house provides highly comfortable accommodation for up to ten adults.
The layout is unusual in that both the upper and lower floors are at street level. No, I haven’t had too many rum punches! The parking and main entrance are above the upper apartment, on the third floor. A gate giving access to the north coast road, and the short walk to a truly beautiful beach is a few steps down from the lowest floor/apartment. The multi-level layout of the property does, however, mean that it is not suited to those with mobility problems or wheelchair users.
Pleasant Prospect is a small hamlet between Mount Irvine and Black Rock. Anyone familiar with Tobago’s Caribbean coast road is sure to be familiar with it. The hamlet is home to the excellent Fish Pot Restaurant, Pizza Boys, Marie’s Place (mini-mart/store), an ATM cash machine and two or three local bars and cafes/take-aways. Although not visible from the house, these features are highly useful, even essential, and are within a minute’s walk of Bayview Villa.
The Crown Point beaches of Store Bay and Pigeon Point are attractive and popular, but have become over-commercialised. They can often be crowded; often excessively so when a cruise liner is docked in Scarborough. The beaches along the Caribbean coast are much quieter and more natural. Other than a few beach traders, they are largely free from any sort of commercialisation (by world standards). Bayview Villa is just a short 3 minute walk from popular Grafton beach.
The Shirvan Road, which runs along the lower part of the Caribbean north coast road from its intersection with the Crown Point-Scarborough highway, has become Tobago’s dominant restaurant strip. More than half dozen of the island’s most popular restaurants are housed along, or adjacent to, this mile-or-so of coast road – all within a 5-minute drive of the apartments.
When one combines these factors, Bayview Villa has as good a location as any accommodation on the island. It is situated within a 15-20 minute drive of every notable business and feature in the main Crown Point-Plymouth-Scarborough triangle and ideally placed for visits to Tobago’s beautiful northern coastline and rainforest.
To get the best from a holiday in Tobago it is normally essential to have your own transport. The island is small, but few properties are within walking distance of more than one or two shops,restaurants, beaches or other facilities. It would be a shame to stay at Bayview without your own transport, but having said that, it is one of the few places where it would be feasible not to have transport, although very limiting.
It should be mentioned that the main North Coast Road passes immediately in front of the villa. In fairness, do not let the term ‘main road’ give you undue concern. A test sample during the daytime indicated a peak traffic flow of around 4 cars per minute passing the house in both directions. Traffic flow is clearly even lower than this after dark. Furthermore, the gardens are densely planted with palms and other tropical trees and shrubs and these act as a natural filter of both the view and sounds. You are aware of passing traffic, but it is not loud enough to drown the constant backdrop of birdsong. We do not believe that road noise would be an issue with the majority of guests at these apartments.
The top floor of Bayview offers a spacious and charming three-bedroom apartment appropriately named The Captain’s Quarters. The middle level of the house houses a newly refurbished two-bedroom apartment called The Middle Deck. The lower level is Crew’s Nest; a spacious studio apartment with its own very unique charm.
All three apartments boast fully air-conditioned en suite double bedrooms. Cots, crib/playpens and a fold-up bed are available on request.
One of the villa’s strongest features is the tasteful, yet totally appropriate, décor throughout. Each apartment has its own unique charm and ambience, but all three are furnished and equipped to similar high standards.
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