The Reef Atlantis
- What's Included
This is my second visit to the Atlantis. We stayed at the royal towel 5 years ago and really loved it. This time decided to stay at the reef since it had the little kitchen area.We arrived late at night and upon check in I asked if there was a possibility of an upgrade since the resort was half full and I was told that there are no complimentary upgrades at the Reef!!! We were given room on the 4 th floor overlooking the garden- which really wasn't a garden but a parking lot and a lobby drive up. We really couldn't keep the balcony door open due to noise level from the cars constantly driving up.The room itself was smaller than expected it was pretty tight for 3 small children and 2 adults. The room did have all the utensils and pots and pans so you can cook if needed- we didn't. Toaster over and microwave also provided. Considering this is a luxury hotel I expected nice beds and sheets--- wrong. Bed was really hard and made noise every time you turn. The sheets were literally yellow see pictures for details. Everything is extremely expensive 12 oz water bottle $4. Part of the resort fee you get two small water bottles per day. First day when we checked in there was no water provided and when I went to complain the next day to the front desk I was pretty much told : oh well , you should have called!The shuttle between the towers was nice and efficient, all the drivers were great. Breakfast buffet will run you $100 for 2 adults and 1 child and I didn't find anything extraordinary there.The weather this time around was horrible... this was the first time we visited Bahamas in January and will be the last time( cold 69-75) very windy and rainy. Overall we might come back if a good deal comes up and would probably stay at the royal tower due to central location.
We had 4 days of horrific, cold, windy weather. In that time we saw the sun for maybe 2 hours total, all days combined. Not Atlantis' fault, nor the Bahamas' fault either, but definitely set the tone for what was an overall bad vacation and monumental waste of money.Why was it so bad? Atlantis is just not a family friendly place in bad weather (and not somewhere I'd return in good weather either). Yes, there is a casino, but if you have small kids in tow, this is not an option for you. Yes, there is an indoor aquarium, but that will buy you an hour of time at most. Yes, there is a kid's club, but you will pay very steep costs for 2.5-3 hours of child care at most (not a full day like at Beaches). Yes, there are dolphins, but if you are willing to stand ankle-deep in the cold water for the abbreviated and cheaper dolphin experience, it will cost you over $167/person for an hour and you will be standing in a big group of people with a guide who talks to you about the dolphins and brings one over to splash around in front of you. After hearing the cost of the cheapest option we did not even bother inquiring about actually swimming with the dolphins, but I can imagine the price is insanely high.Yes, there is alcohol, but the bars sell the typical tourist trap tiki bar drinks (while not actually having the tiki bars that at least add character and give you the Caribbean feels- just standard snack bar set ups for the most part). Expect the standard watered down, frozen daiquiris from a machine with rum that you can't taste so you have to order 5 of them at some ungodly price each to notice any effect. Or worse- their signature drinks like the Atlantean which looks like a greenish-blue coolaid mix with a weak shot of rum. Yes, there is food, but it all costs a small fortune and at best is unmemorable, at worst, memorable for being notably bad. Dinner for 3 (one of our kids was young enough not to "count" as an eater) at a mediocre, kid-friendly resort restaurant with only 2 glasses of wine ordered cost well over $200. Trying to save money by eating breakfast at Starbucks every morning? $60 for 2 coffees, 2 milks 2 yogurts and 2 pastries. Yes, there are hotel babysitters at night, but if you have two kids, that will cost you $37.50/hour, for a 3 hour minimum. If you have more than 2 kids, you are looking at $50 or more per hour. But here is where it gets really bad for us. For a 5 hotel, 3,800 room resort spanning over 141 acres, THERE IS ONLY ONE 15 PERSON HOT TUB IN THE ENTIRE RESORT. AND, it is located in the middle of the water park that opens at 10am and closes at 5pm, so you can't even try to hit it at a low-traffic time or enjoy it at night. It won't be open. Do the math- 3,800 rooms, 2-4 people per room, ~80% occupancy- that means that at any given time you have 8,000 up to 15,000 people trying to squeeze into a 15 person hot tub. Meanwhile there are dozens and dozens of vast, enormous, expansive pools that were way too cold to use during our stay, but even in great weather are likely surplus and can't ever be fully utilized. The one hot tub was sadly not even nice- no ocean view, no place to put your towels, just a little cavernous tepidly warm pool carved into a overhang where every shivering person coming off of the water slides tried to squeeze in, lowering the collective temperature. Convert some of the pools to hot tubs- guests expect the option! Even if the Bahamas is typically hot and our cold weather was an anomaly, we never could've imagined that a resort of this gargantuan size would not have any hot tubs. Our bad weather experience could've been wildly improved by the ability to sit in a nice, quiet hot tub with drinks and a good book. Instead we found ourselves running back to the hotel room to jump in a bath tub to warm up, which is something we could've done back in the snow at home and didn't need to pay thousands and thousands of dollars to do at Atlantis. At one point we were so desperate to warm up and sit in a hot body of water that we paid up for child care and succumbed to the Mandara Spa because we called ahead and were told they had a hot tub that we could use with purchase of services. Besides the cost of the childcare, the hour of warm water and massage cost us $400 and like all our experiences there-was mediocre and disappointing. The hot tub was lukewarm and lined with sharp stones that were painful to sit on. Then, at my appointed massage time, I sat around and waited for my name to be called, but it never was. After 10 minutes of waiting I tracked someone down and was finally told to just go upstairs and ask around for my massage therapist. Not what you expect for your $200. But worse of all, my 50 minute, $200 massage was reduced to 40 minutes without apology or discount. All part of the disappointing money suck that is Atlantis. Bright spots? The Reef rooms are spacious and comfortable, which was good as we spent much more time inside it than we ever expected to. The Kids' Adventure Club, while expensive, was a hit with my kids and they looked forward to going. The lazy river, which we shivered our way through several times, was more entertaining than expected and the kids loved it. That's really about it. Overall, Atlantis was a ridiculous waste of money. Obviously, better weather could've improved our stay and I will be the first to admit that, but there are so many better resorts you can go to for less money and a much better experience. We've been to the other Caribbean family resort behemoth, Beaches in Turks and Caicos, and immediately regretted not going back there. As an all-inclusive resort, the price tag shock comes upfront, but you don't have to spend another penny while there. At Atlantis, the price is still ridiculously high up front for what you get, then you can expect each day to drain hundreds to (more realistically) thousands more dollars from your wallet for costs you probably never saw coming. Every single aspect of the experience at Beaches (from the inclusive airport shuttles to the surprisingly decent food and drink to the happy and friendly staff to the superior beaches to the more authentic Caribbean experience) was better than Atlantis. And overall it's better value, too. A 3.5 day stay at Atlantis cost us the same or more than a 6 day stay at Beaches, and we got dramatically less for the money. Go elsewhere.
We decided to go to the Bahamas last minute since our favorite vacation spot was affected by the hurricane. We always considered going to Atlantis, but there were mixed reviews. The truth of the reviews is: the Beach tower is cheaper, but in much need of a facelift. The hallways smell and it looks outdated. The pools need resurfacing, but the beach across from this tower is beautiful. So, if you don’t care for those things and just want to enjoy the water park and the beach on a budget....One thing that was inconvenient in our opinion was the dining plan: alcoholic drinks are not included, and it only includes a few restaurants. And most restaurants require reservation. And they may be in another tower (FAR) from yours, and they charge $50.00 if you miss your reservation. Oh, and some restaurants have certain times that they allow children there. You get it?!?! To us, this seemed A LOT of planning for a vacation meal... what if you’re having too much fun at the pool? What if your child needs a nap? Just saying....So we ended up eating at the buffet most nights, and it was fine. But when you’re in a huge place like Atlantis, you can’t help but feeling restricted from your culinary experiences when the options are so limited. On a positive note, the Reef tower was beautiful, rooms were spacious and the pool was never busy. The lounge chairs have thick cushions, very comfortable. You definitely get what you pay for....The beach has beautiful white sand, but very rocky. I hurt my feet trying to get in the water while holding my child... the water park is great, lots of fun for the kids. The biggest deal breaker for us was that the pools close at 5 pm. Yes, 5 pm! You shower, have dinner, and good luck! There is no entertainment . We walked to the shops for a couple of nights, but it gets old. For adults there is a casino and a night club. For this reason only, we will not be going back to Atlantis. The resort is huge, and you need to take the shuttle to explore. It’s not a bad thing, since they were available all the time (5-10 min. wait usually).We did the dolphin encounter, but honestly? Save your money and do it at SeaWorld. It was much better and interactive. Overall, the place is gorgeous, the beach is beautiful, but when I compare vacations... I’m still looking forward to my ALL INCLUSIVE Beaches resort vacation... call me crazy, but I like the freedom to jump in the pool at midnight if I want to!
The Reef is like a luxury condo because of the kitchenette. Food is very expensive at Atlantis so we brought breakfast foods and cooked there. The shuttle buses helped us get around. We had a blast there. May was not hot and less tourists so I recommend that time of year
The hotel is old... Terrible service, not at all friendly staff... everything inside the resort cost a fortune! The food is terrible... only fast food at the pools... the “fine dining” is a joke... be very careful
Vacations packages include round-trip flights, accommodations, round-trip transfers (unless outlined below) to and from the hotel, and tourist cards (if required, unless outlined below).
If selecting an all-inclusive resort option, the package will also include the all-inclusive features as outlined by each resort.
Items not included:
- Travel insurance (mandatory if traveling to Cuba)
- Tourist cards ($10USD) if traveling to Dominican Republic with Sunwing Airlines
- Departure taxes ($20USD) if traveling to Dominican Republic with Sunwing or Signarture Vacations
- Resort fees (if applicable) must be paid directly to the hotel
- Hotel transfers for packages to USA
- Hotel transfers for packages to Europe
- Items of a personal nature
- 497 Rooms
- 2 Restaurants
- 1 Bar
- 1 pool
- Golf nearby
- Coin operated laundromat
- Sundry Store
- Wireless internet (fee)
- Business centre (fee)
- Use of all restaurants and facilities at The Cove Atlantis and Atlantis. Exception is the adults only pool at The Cove.
- 1 king-size bed and 1 double sofabed
- 1 full bathroom
- Air conditioning
- Coffee maker
- Internet (fee)
- Iron and ironing board
- Kitchenette facilities including under counter refrigerator, 2 burner ceramic glass cooktop, under counter single drawer dishwasher, countertop microwave oven, sink, china, glassware, tableware, cookware, utensils.
- Max occupancy: 4
Resort Location Map
The Reef AtlantisNassau,Bahamas
- Hotel Contacts
- Extra Info
1 Casino Drive New Providence Island
Some restaurants may be open for certain meals only and limited visits may apply. Reservations required and dress code in effect for a la carte restaurants. Time restrictions may apply for water sports.
Child pricing may only be available with select tour operators and valid for select dates and durations. Child pricing rules are subject to change without notice. Please contact one of our vacation specialists if you require assistance with child pricing.
Photo identification and/or credit card or cash deposit may be required at check-in for incidental charges.
Extra-person charges may apply and vary depending on hotel policy. Rollaway beds and cribs (infant beds) may be available and should be requested at the time of booking; fees may apply.
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