Sandals Grande Antigua: Our Honest Review

We recently visited every Sandals Resort, including Sandals Grande Antigua. In this review, we will be sharing with you our experience and thoughts on the food, pool, beach, activities, and more.

Overall, we really enjoyed our time at Sandals Grande Antigua and would go back. We think the staff was very attentive, the food and restaurant service was well high quality, and the beach and pools were wonderful.

view from our room

We found the rooms to be a bit outdated, but they are starting renovations soon and this was not a problem for us. The only other negative is the beach has numerous vendors, but on the positive, they only approach you once and then leave you alone.

Sandals Grande Antigua Deals

Sandals has regular discounts on some rooms and resorts. It is best to check their website before booking or to work with a travel agent who can find you the best deal for you. I have seen great last-minute deals and they have an ongoing 777 deals that change each week.

Overview of Sandals Grande Antigua

Sandals Grande Antigua has been voted “world’s most romantic resort,” and it provides couples with the perfect place to escape. Nestled amidst 27 acres of lush tropical landscaping, Sandals Antigua features a stunning beach, luxurious suites, and all sorts of complementary activities.

Sandals Grande Antigua is set on the most famous and best beach in Antigua, a long stretch of white sand along gorgeous Dickenson Bay. The resort has a European-themed area called the Mediterranean Oceanview Village and a Caribbean Village.

Arriving at Sandals Grande Antigua

To get to Sandals Grande Antigua, we flew into VC Bird International Airport.

After arriving at the airport we checked in with the Sandals desk and were quickly taken on the 15-minute complimentary shuttle ride to the resort.

Sandals Antigua Rooms and Suites

After arriving at the resort we were quickly shown to our suite. We arrived late at night so there was no wait and our bulter quickly escorted us.

We stayed at a Mediterranean Oceanview Penthouse with One Bedroom Butler Suite which had a great view of the resort and a separate living room and bedroom.

Sandals Antigua offers a variety of rooms and suites in either the Mediterranean or Caribbean Beachfront villages. A great honeymoon retreat is the Mediterranean Villa with Private Pool Sanctuary, which offers water views from the private patio with a pool and whirlpool, as well as a separate living room and a bathroom with a walk-in rain shower and Roman whirlpool tub. This villa comes with personal butler service.

There are plenty of other beachfront, oceanview, and garden view suites and room options, both with and without butler service.

Food Review

There are 11 restaurants at Sandals Grande Antigua we had to choose from, with several beachfront restaurants overlooking the gorgeous Caribbean. Cuisine choices included international, Caribbean, Italian, seafood, Asian, Tex-Mex, sushi, pizza, and Parisian-style pastries.

For breakfast, you can go to the buffet at Bayside or Marios or get served a la carte at Elanors. We also went to the Cafe de Paris for specialty coffee, crepes, and pastries.

For lunch, we enjoyed the Courtyard Bistro where they have sandwiches, hot dogs, and burgers. Bayside has a lunch buffet with a rotating menu. We had Mexican and Antiguan food there are loved it. My mouth is watering thinking about the pizza at Bella Napoli which is made to order in a brick oven.

For Dinner, our favorite spot is Soy where you can choose from all types of sushi. My favorites were Seared Tuna Tataki, the Rainbow Roll, and Crispy Spicy Tuna. Next door is Kimonos which is a Japanese teppanyaki restaurant.

Corral is a Tex-Mex kitchen where we enjoyed BBQ pulled pork tacos, Slow Cooked Pork Baby Back Ribs, and chicken fajitas.

All the food we had in Antigua was good, but I have to recommend one more thing… the chicken wings at the Drunken Duck which is perfect for a late-night snack.

Drink Review

There are 7 bars at Sandal Grande Antigua, including a swim-up bar and a tiki bar.

Two pools have swim-up bars that make getting a drink very convenient.

As at every Sandals resort, all of your meals, snacks, and beverages are included in your stay, so you can feast to your heart’s content! Room service is also included.

Pool Review

There are several pools at Sandals Antigua. The main pool is large and in the middle of the property. There is a swim-up bar and regular entertainment throughout the day.

What we like about the main pool is that the seating area is large enough that there are a lot of chairs and you can sit where the speakers are not pointed directly at you. There were also a lot of Sandals floats in the pools for people to use.

We liked that there was entertainment, but it wasn’t too loud or happening all day long. If you are looking for a party environment you will not be finding it here.

People stayed in the hot tub until later in the evening which we enjoyed as well. We also enjoyed the cats that hung around the pool.

Beyond the main pool, there are several small quieter pools, one of them with its own swim-up bar. With so many tucked away pools its easy to find a nice spot in a quiet relaxing environment.

Beach Review

The beach is situated on Dickenson Bay, one of the most gorgeous beaches in the Caribbean. We really enjoyed our time swimming in the ocean. The only complaint some people have are the vendors on the beach.

There are chairs on the Sandals side of the gate on the beach you can stay at. The vendors are also not very aggressive. On our first day on the beach, all the vendors stopped by, but after refusing them once, they did not bother us again.

I honestly wanted to buy a t shirt so when this lady came by she started showing me everything she had until I found something I did not like.

What to do at Sandals Grande Antigua

We never ran out of things to do at Sandals Antigua during our stay.

The water at Sandals Antigua is calm and perfect for watersports; complimentary water sports available include snorkeling, paddleboarding, canoeing, kayaking, scuba diving, windsurfing, and Hobie Cat sailing. Professional instruction in watersports is even included (except for scuba diving).

Land sports are also included and we enjoyed playing beach volleyball. Basketball, tennis, table tennis, and croquet were available and you can also take a yoga class or work out at the fitness center.

Each night there was entertainment with different themes.

You can also get out and see Antigua. Book an excursion such as a Jeep tour around Antigua’s top sites, ziplining in the rainforest, hiking, deep sea fishing, a cultural tour, a sunset cruise, and more.

Excursions around Antigua

During our stay in Antigua, we had the chance to get off the resort twice and highly recommend it.

The highlight was going to a cooking class at Nicole’s Table. It was located about 15 minutes from the resort and we cooked some amazing food.

We started making Nicole’s Old Fashioned Rum Punch, then made Coconut Crisps to snack on as we made the main course, Abby’s West Indian Curry, Dhal Puri Roti, Roasted Pumpkin and Spinach Cooked in Coconut Milk.

The Roti was so good and was perfect with the curry. The island food is quite heavy and we left stuffed following the rum tasting.

We also went to Sheer Rocks, a restaurant that also has pools that you can reserve.

Another great option we wanted to do but did not have time for was going to see the stingrays at Stingray City.

The Spa at Sandals Grande Antigua

If you want the relaxation on your Antigua honeymoon or vacation, book a couples massage or other indulgent spa service. The Red Lane® Spa at Sandals Grande Antigua offers a full range of treatments (not included in your room rate) such as facials, massage services, body services, and a steam room.

Do you need to tip?

We loved that during our trip we did not need to tip since they are included in the price of accommodations.

The only exceptions are the butlers that serve the people in bulter suites, spa therapists, airport transport drivers, and staff on excursions.

Is there room service?

We had a room that included butler service, so we had room service available 24 hours a day. It is also available to club level guest but not for 24 hours.

Is wifi available?

Yes, WiFi is included throughout the resort.

What is the best time of year to go to Antigua?

The best time to visit Antigua is from May to November, which is the island’s off-season. Rates are definitely cheaper and although there is a small threat of hurricanes, temperatures typically don’t get higher than 80 degrees. March and April also offer wonderful weather and are a great time to visit Antigua. 

Is it safe to go to Antigua?

Yes, Antigua is one of the safest Caribbean islands and we felt safe the entire time we were there.

Our Thoughts on Sandals Grande Antigua

Overall, we found Sandals Antigua to be a great resort for relaxing. The food is good, the beach is everything you would want for a Caribbean getaway, and the pools provide great areas to relax in during your stay.

We also enjoyed our time off the resort and think everyone should do an excursion or two during their stay.

The staff were a highlight of our stay since they were very friendly and accommodating.

This resort is not for someone looking for a modern style, a quiet beach where no one will bother you, or a party environment.

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