Essex Cottage - Reader Reports & Opinion
Veronika from Spain visited in February 2014 and awarded
Spending 2 months, January and February, at Essex Cottage, with Bea and Win as “neighbors”, next to the Main Ridge Forest Reserve and overlooking the Caribbean sea, was as close to paradise as I have ever been. Located at Northside road, just above Parlatuvier Bay, living in this natural, well designed and very comfortable wooden house, above the canopy of tropical trees, makes one feel as part of nature itself. Bea and Win are most perfect hosts, very easy going, knowledgeable, interesting and friendly. For you foodies: Bea is an exceptional, very creative cook. Win has been so helpful in every big and little way throughout our entire stay.
As bird lovers, we enjoyed many hours relaxing, just watching and listening to birds, like Bananaquits, bluegray Tanagers, Palm Tanagers, orangewinged Parrots, the magnificent Frigates and many more. We even saw barred antshrikes, greater Ani, Motmot and whitetailed sabrewing right from the terrace. When getting up in the morning, albeit sleeping some more after the early loud chatter of Chachalacas would wake us, I was greeted by the beautiful and varied songs of my special friend, a tropical Mockingbird, demanding loudly his Papaya breakfast and always answering my own, less artfully whistled melodies greeting him back. In the evenings, we would feed Agoutis; in time, they became less shy and we could observe them holding bananas and such with their forehands, sitting and munching. On the guided tour through the Rainforest, we saw, of course, many more birds: bluebacked Manakin, rufoustailed Jacamar, collared Trogon, goldenolive Woodpecker, different hummingbirds and many more of those beautiful tropical species.
Bea and Win introduced us to many people from Parlatuvier, we found them to be very friendly and helpful, and we enjoyed talking to them. Win offered to order Lobster from a fisher who catches them close to the rocks in the sea right below the guesthouse. What a treat, to be able to prepare them then and there, so fresh and tasty.
Of course, we travelled all over the Island, walked the beautiful path to the Argyle Fall, drove along the Atlantic Coast from Speyside to Crown Point, went shopping at Scarborough, eat Ice Cream at quaint Charlotteville and checked out different beaches like Pigeon Point, Mt. Irvine Bay and scenic Stonehaven Bay. Our favourite beach though was the pristine, laidback and quite Englishman’s bay, only 3 minutes from the cottage; there we enjoyed swimming, watching Pelicans fish and just taking in all the beauty around us.
Dear reader, how can I ever stop telling you about paradise? Bea and Win, with their upscale Gloucester Place Guest House and self catering Essex Cottage will be your best choice if you value quality, friendliness, beauty, peacefulness and easy going; I have never experienced better.
Scott And Vicky from U.S.A. visited in January 2014 and awarded
Essex Cottage is a beautiful and relaxing place high above the trees overlooking the ocean. Bea and Win were great hosts and enjoy what they do. Bea is an excellent cook and Win does a good job cleaning up afterwards. The waterfalls and rainbows were beautiful. Bea and Win were always willing to give you tips on what to see in the area. We found the "pot of gold" at the end of the rainbow at Essex Cottage. The Midwest Farmers.
Alison Potter from U.K. visited in January 2014 and awarded
My husband and I stayed here with our three grown up children (19 yrs - 26yrs) It was like staying in Paradise. Beautiful location, friendly hosts and wonderful food.The breakfasts were different each day. We requested an evening meal one night and it was delicious. Our bedroom had an amazing view looking down through the lush vegetation to the sea. All three rooms had an en suite bathroom and access to a balcony - very clean and comfortable. Bea and Win made us feel very welcome and were interesting and interested hosts. If we ever have the fortune of returning to Tobao we'll definitely stay here again!
Carol Palmer from U.K. visited in January 2014 and awarded
This well-designed B & B run by Bea and Win exceeds expectations combining comfortable ambience, thoughtful hosts, well-appointed rooms and fabulous views. They have heaps of local knowledge and are happy to make suggestions and bookings as well as setting out to be as helpful and accommodating as possible. They have snorkelling gear for you to borrow, and bamboo sticks to help walking the trails. Wellies (I took short ones) or ‘water shoes’ are very useful by the way.
Set above a forested river gorge with sea views and landscaped gardens Gloucester Place offers tranquil days spent reading, looking out over the terrace, with an afternoon dip in the pool, watching the humming birds feeding on the flowers, or adventures on foot to the bottom of the sloping garden where there is a mini waterfall, I found a humming bird nest, and saw my first agouti, or .... to Glasgow Bar just a few mins walk up the road with wonderful views over Parlatuvier Bay and a walk down to it from there. As well as that there are at least two other rivers to be explored on foot – one for a short distance, and one for longer with more opportunities to spot birds.
If you’ve hired a car, 15 mins drive North takes you to the Main Ridge road that traverses the forest from coast to coast where there are plentiful birds to be seen, and to Bloody Bay with its herons, sandpipers and pelicans, and to Castara in the opposite direction (10 min drive), again with pelicans and snorkelling/swimming where you’ll find sting rays and Hawksbill Turtles, while flying over head at regular intervals, the Magnificent Frigate Birds. The coastline up here is very empty and unspoilt with the most touristy place being Castara.
Thank you Bea and Win for a very special introduction to Tobago.
Richard Butler from U.K. visited in January 2014 and awarded
If you want a clean, comfortable guest house with the most welcoming and friendly owners, away from the tourist hotspots, then this is it. Originally picked as part of a bird watching trip, so we could be near the rainforest reserve in the north of the island it is a gem. Bea and Win just make you feel relaxed and at ease as soon as you arrive.
The guest house is in a cliff side location with spectacular views overlooking the Caribbean Sea about an hours drive from the airport.
With a few tips on the local spots from Bea and Win we were soon watching some stunning birds. Top River Falls in Parlatuvier is not to be missed. On the short easy walk to these picturesque falls we saw specialities such as Barred Antshrike, White-fringed Antwren, Green Kingfisher, Rufous-tailed Jacamar and Blue-crowned Motmot. Around Parlatuvier Bay itself we saw Magnificant Frigatebirds, Brown Booby and Brown Pelicans.
If we come back to Tobago, Gloucester Place will be top of our accommodation list.
Thanks Bea and Win for a most enjoyable stay