OK, been thinking (pining) about it for a couple of weeks (no make that months now) so its time to put fingers to keyboard and post a report following our first visit to Couples. Yes I know, we were there from 6th Nov last year, but still seems fresh in our memories. Please excuse the length of this post, but really wanted to try and convey our feelings!
We’ve previously stayed a 3 ‘S’ resorts further down the Caribbean and wanted to try somewhere else as the last couple of stays had not lived up to expectations. Couples seemed ideal as an alternative. AND IT WAS!
Having sat there with fingers crossed, watched Hurricane Tomas take a swift right and we were good to go… Arrival at MoBay (6th Nov) was uneventful, loved the fact that we could get a refreshment and relax for a few minutes (and it was only 10-15 minutes at most) before being escorted to a minibus to take us to CSS (and 2 couples to CTI). Unfortunately, it was getting dark by this time so no scenic views, just longing to get to CSS after a 10hr flight from UK. The transfer probably took about 1hr 45 mins but tiredness and the dark made it feel longer.
Check-in : was straightforward (though reception was quite dark to our tired eyes – despite being basic, the forms were a challenge to read!).
Room : Then off to our room… it was wonderful, second floor in B block (Beachfront Suite). By now we were just pleased to be there and ‘installed’ in the room (I never settle until this point – this is where my holiday begins!). Food was on the agenda (airline food was, er, not great…)
It was now about 8.30pm so room service seemed sensible. Couples : 10 out of 10, thank you. Food arrived in short order, was hot, tasty and very welcomed.
The room was beautifully presented, flower petals on the bed, very welcoming. The following morning we noticed a large number of small ant/spider mites in the bathroom and these were mentioned to housekeeping who clearly did something as problem disappeared. We had no other issues with tropical visitors.
Housekeeping was excellent, turn down service regular and drinks replenished without fault. Would compliment the bar team, I prefer ‘Coke’ to Pepsi and having noted this on the bar refill chart came back to find the fridge filled with Coke!
Grounds : Got our bearings the next day and realised that CSS is just the sort of resort we hoped for. Quiet, relaxed, plenty of paths for a daily walk, and a couple of laps of the lake provided a nice start to the day - though dodging the rather large puddles at some points was a challenge!
Passed SSB (AN beach) and thought, OK, maybe – I’m certainly no stick insect and whilst my Darling Wife has nothing to be worried about, lacks self confidence. We had however said before we went that we would try it, even if it meant that it was a short visit and then back to the main beach. See our posting in the AN section for further details!
Restaurants : Breakfast was at the Palazzina and we always managed to get an outside table, rarely waiting more than a minute or two before being beckoned. Wonderful array at the breakfast buffet – plenty to satisfy anyone’s palate.
We ate all of the restaurants (including SSB Beach Grill ) and would have to say we didn’t have a bad meal. The overall quality of food was very good, presentation excellent, and flavours fantastic - the Rack of Lamb was amazing!
I’m a fussy eater, but knew that if I didn’t find something I liked I could always get an alternative – Beach Grill or room service. I have read that they have been known to get meals from other restaurants if you don’t find something you like, but I didn’t need to test this!
Trips : We had decided from the outset that this was to be a recharge trip, so had no intentions of trying to pack too much in.
We did the shopping trip and once past the 'I'll Braid your hair crowd', things were fine. Main shopping area was exactly as expected - most of the shops selling the same souvenirs (though OH says come nice Jewellery shops...). Whilst we didn’t, others that we were with ventured down to a local ‘supermarket’ and picked up rum, sauces etc at vastly cheaper prices than the main Tourist area.
The only comment I would make about this trip was it was a little chaotic. We had booked the trading places with Guest Services but when the minibuses arrived it seemed a free-for-all to get on them (including some that sounded like they had not booked!). A bit more organisation may have been useful!
We also booked for Dunns River Falls, but the weather turned a bit ugly (thunder & lightening) that day so we cancelled – we had already decided that we would be back so thought we will try again then!
Glass Bottom Boat : Leaves from the main beach and takes you on 30-40 minute trip out to a wreck. Plenty to see (Barrington was a mine of information) even though visibility was still recovering from bad weather.
Check Out : Awful, not because of Couples, just awful because we were leaving !
Seriously, straight forward and were able to leave hand luggage behind reception and return to the beach. After an uneventful trip back to MoBay we checked in and awaited the flight. Whilst I’ve read about concerns over the secondary security/customs check on departure, it wasn’t too bad. Yes, they seem to have had a charisma by-pass, and I didn’t appreciate being told I couldn’t wait for my wife despite the fact that I wasn’t trying to – I was simply trying to pick up both of my bags which obviously took more than the 3 milliseconds they were willing to accept!
Will we be back… job and finances permitting, definitely so. It was a wonderful trip, beautiful location, excellent service, wonderful food and incredible company from my gorgeous wife. A trip we will never forget.
Last edited by SueAndPeterC; February 15th, 2011 at 07:21 PM.