Arno Vale Visit

29 room 3* hotel located on the Arnos Vale plantation
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Rod Scott

Arno Vale Visit

Post by Rod Scott » Fri Mar 11, 2005 10:14 pm

I came back after 23+ years hoping to enjoy those aspects of Arnos Vale that made it so special - the birds, the snorkeling, and the setting.

I wasn't disappointed. The birds were spectacular, the snorkeling was the best "off the beach" I have experienced in 30 yeas of travel in the Caribbean, and the setting is still the lush, unspoiled spot I remember.

My wife, Andi, and I stayed in two classes of rooms -an unremodeled Pool View room (on the beach level) and a lovely renovated junior suite called Crow's Nest on (top of) the hill. The lower was spartan and depressing. The higher was a delight and worth the 255 steps to the beach. Luckily for us most of the stay was on high watching birds, sunsets, and capturing the breezes. Crow's Nest had a new bathroom, 4 poster bed, and mini bar, and overall a worthwhile upgrade.

We were on the full meal plan, and based on our personal expectations, we were disappointed. While other enjoyed heaping plates from the buffet, we found the food uninspired but not bad. To the point that we went out 3 nights to other restaurants (La Tataruga was the standout of the bunch).

Staff was pleasant and cooperative but unsophisticated, and at times clueless, esp. at lunch at the beach bar. Ken and his management staff are obviously trying to inspire a higher grade of attentiveness, and from what I have read here, it's better than before. I hope he keeps up the good work.

Overall the trip was a real success. We met some wonderful couples. The island is the treasure I remembered (with the roads much better - in spite of the mudslide repair crews with monsterously wide trucks), and Arnos Vales well worth the stay.

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