May 20, 2019

hotel review: Sugar Cane Club, Barbados


Sugar Cane Club  2015 Sugar Cane Club, Maynards, St. Peter, (246) 422-5026.  47 rooms; must be age 14+.  2 pools; squash court; exercise room; health spa.  2 restaurants; 2 bars.

grounds of Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados
grounds of Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados


pool at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados
pool at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados

Located at a mid-island high point, this all-inclusive resort is also mid-point in its service and cuisine.  This was the first time I’ve encountered a policy that imposes a fee for changing towels more frequently than every two days.  Sheets are part polyester, which is an issue in a warm climate.  And though the food was generally good, the pastries were dismal.  The staff was mixed regarding service--some were professional and efficient, others the opposite.  Sometimes when I ordered a drink I got one right away, and other times I waited while the bartender did this and that.  However, the rum punch and pina coladas were worth a short wait.

bar at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados
bar at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados


shrimp salad for lunch at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados
shrimp salad for lunch at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados


The room decor is tropical style with bamboo accents, and I did like the separation of bedroom from living room and veranda, but the bedroom had only air conditioning.  The living room had only a ceiling fan with the controls too high to reach and adjust, and it took me two days to realize I could open the bathroom window.  The relatively remote location makes this property one you should choose with thought, but shuttles are available at specific times to take you down to Speightstown to an affiliated beach house and to where you can access the local bus service into Holetown, and farther on to Bridgetown. 
One enjoyable dinner was a buffet of local specialties served by the pool, with live singing for entertainment.  A schedule of hotel-sponsored activities includes rum tasting, a complimentary glass-bottom boat excursion, and a guided gully walk that ends with a freshly cut coconut drink.  Nicely manicured grounds are planted with colorful flowers, and monkeys and giant snails are among the fauna to look for.  Tips here are given in an envelope at the end of stay and shared by the entire staff.

guest room at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados
guest room at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados


pink hibiscus greeting in guest room at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados
pink hibiscus greeting in guest room at Sugar Cane Club in St. Peter, Barbados

Overall, I recommend a stay here if you are able to secure a great price and also if you want a non-beach-centric, up-island experience.  Note that this property will be incorporating upgrades and building three new rooms during the period of July 1 through August 15 2019, and so will not be accepting bookings during that period.



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images ©2019 Carole Terwilliger Meyers


May 1, 2019

hotel review: Hilton Barbados Resort, Barbados


Hilton Barbados Resort  Needham's Point, St Michael, 11000, Bridgetown, 246-426-0200.  355 rooms+suites.  Pool and hot tub complex; fitness center; 4 tennis courts; health spa; beauty salon.  5 restaurants.

view from room at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
view from room at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados

Located on a prime peninsula position at the southwestern tip of the island, this hotel offers an ocean view from every guest room.  Each room also has a private balcony, and bathrooms have a separate bathtub and shower.  The pool complex is expansive and well equipped, and though the surf is often too rough for swimming, plenty of hammocks and lounge chairs await napping or reading.  Children under five eat for free and those ages 5-12 years get free breakfasts.  Additionally, the hotel provides activities and areas for kids as part of its Kidz Club program.  My room on the 6th floor had a divine high ceiling, and I was able to turn off the air conditioning and open the balcony door to a perfect temperature and the sounds of the surf.  It also attracted a sweet little bird that stopped by regularly to raid the coffee tray.

guest room at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
guest room at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados






A 17th-century fort and one of the island’s four lighthouses are on the hotel’s grounds.  Built at Needham’s Point in 1650 by the British military to protect beautiful Carlisle Bay from any enemy attacks, Charles Fort was originally called Needham’s Fort.  Its name was changed in 1660.  With 33 guns (at one time it had 40) and 4 swivels, this important fort was part of the garrison and the largest of the forts built around the island.  The fort became a part of the British Military Garrison in 1836.  Visitors can see how the cannon were strategically positioned.  The area now fronts an important nesting beach for Hawksbill turtles.

cannon at Charles Fort at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
cannon at Charles Fort at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados


Constructed in 1855, the Needham's Lighthouse is the second oldest lighthouse on Barbados.  Featuring an octagonal shape and a stationary light, it is also a little different from the others that are all located at Harrison Point.  The lighthouse tower is closed to visitors.

Needham's Lighthouse at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
Needham's Lighthouse at Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados


Just a short walk away, guests can find several inexpensive local snack shacks.
●A popular roti house is around the corner of the entrance gate.
Cuz Fish Shack is a short walk away at Pebbles Beach.  Customers step up to the window of this popular fish shack to place their order.  The menu is simple--a fish cutter (a “cutter” is a sandwich)--and the price is right, BB$10.  Customers squirt in a condiment sauce or some mayo.  The day I ate here the fish was fresh marlin, and it was pretty darn good washed down with a cold local Banks beer.  Choices for seating are few--one bench is adjacent, and a beach wall where you can perch and enjoy the atmospheric surf is just a few steps away.

Cuz Fish Shack near Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
Cuz Fish Shack near Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados


Cuz Fish Shack near Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
Cuz Fish Shack near Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados


cutter/sandwich at Cuz Fish Shack near Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados
cutter/sandwich at Cuz Fish Shack near Hilton Barbados Resort in Barbados


More things to do in Barbados.

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images and video ©2019 Carole Terwilliger Meyers