Sunday, May 6, 2012

Bahamas - Breezes Bahamas - 2010 Trip

Breezes Bahamas offers an all-inclusive package that includes room, meals, beverages including alcohol, and activities.  This sounds enticing but can create a feeling of being a slave to the package.  After all, one has already paid for it.  The atmosphere seems a little like spring break for adults which can be fun... for awhile.  The activities included things like beach volleyball, pool volleyball, kayaking, sailing, wind surfing, dancing, karoake, live music, pool, ping pong, board games, etc.  The pool tables need some work.  The tops are a little wonky.  Some of the tables are actually a bit wobbly.  The pockets on some tables are a bit loose.  There aren't quite enough sticks and the balls kept getting mixed up between the tables indicating there either people were trying to make complete sets by exchanging balls between the tables or carelessness prevailed.
The pool appeared clean though there were several times floating debris was visible and off-putting.
The lobby was bright, colorful and inviting.  It's sets a celebratory mood that makes one smile upon entry.  The rooms are a little more traditional than the lobby and the artwork in the elevators.  The only chair in the rooms is the one at the desk, so don't expect a place to lounge and read or watch television other than the bed.  The balcony door opens and allows the breeze to enter the room.  The floors are tile as is appropriate for a beach setting.  The building is in need of some maintence, but the staff does seem to keep busy working on issues.
The food was mediocre.  The breakfast buffet serves a nice variety but most of the food tastes prepackaged and processed.  This may not matter to some but for those trying to eat healthy, it creates a problem.  The lunch buffet is filled with a nice variety but again the choices tend to be fairly heavy on processed carbs and the sauces are rather sweet.  The dinner buffet offers a different set of choices but is also heavy on processed carbs, sweet sauces, and fried food.  There poolside grill is grill food - hamburgers, hotdogs, jerk chicken, french fries, etc. and is about what one would expect.  Breezes offers two "fine dining" options, Garden of Eden and Martino's.  Both require you make reservations the day prior to eating there and only between 9am and 11am, so be prepared for that.  For example, if you want to dine there on Wednesday, you must make your reservation on Tuesday.  Hotel staff described the Garden of Eden as serving French cuisine and being the more romantic of the two.  Perhaps the lattice between the tables creating some seclusion and the loveseat style seating are supposed to feel romantic.  The food really didn't taste French.  Martino's is described as Italian.  They have an antipasto bar and serve a variety of Italian dishes.  The decor is mostly red and feels more romantic.  Again, the food didn't wow.
The bars served drinks most of the day.  The mixed drinks were weak.  The wine was okay but not outstanding.  The tequila sunrises tended to be more bitter than sweet.  The sunset, Marco's (one of the bartenders) signature drinks was tasty and became the drink for the rest of the week.  With people drinking pretty much all day and night, it makes sense to keep the drinks a little on the weak side.  However, this was a bit disappointing.
The service at Breezes was excellent.  From the hotel greeter and shuttle bus driver at the airport to the front desk staff, guests feel welcomed and appreciated.  The front desk staff was gracious, accommodating, and efficient.  One of them even managed to find an open reservation for Garden of Eden upon learning the night after our arrival was a special occasion since we hadn't arrived early enough to make the reservation according to the hotel's "rules".   The wait staff at both the fine dining restaurants were attentive without being intrusive though both meals seemed to move a little too quickly.  There were always staff members working on keeping floors clean, maintenance done, and cleaning tables, chairs, etc.  The rooms were cleaned in a timely manner and cleaned well.  The cleaning staff was always polite and willing to take care of guests' needs.  Only once was a staff member rude, and she quickly checked herself.  Overall, the staff did an excellent job welcoming and caring for guests' needs.
Of course, the beach access was awesome.  Walks on the beach provided both lively energy and quiet spots.  The beach was kept mostly clean and the water was beautiful!!
Overall, Breezes was fun but might not be the place to go if one is looking for sophistication.
        

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