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Reviewed 8 September 2018

We stayed in one of the premium rooms that had a plunge pool....it was so nice to come back to the room and have our own private area to take a dip and not worry about screaming kids or whatnot at the main pool. We also had a fabulous view of Jolly Harbor. Even though they are in a serious drought, there were still plenty of flowering trees and bushes around. Everyone at the reception desk was friendly and helpful and the drivers were all lovely and prompt when ferrying us up and down the hill. The cats were not a problem for us, they would jump on the balcony once in a while, but weren't aggressive or anything...probably just hungry and smelled our lunch. Everything in our room worked, the mini fridge was nice for stowing leftovers and the a/c worked great as well! The only thing keeping me from giving an Excellent rating was the f&b department. Carmichael's was delicious and servers/bartenders were friendly, but sadly they ran out of wine....no biggie, I can certainly drink something else. Couple that, though, with the main restaurant...it was verrrrrrry slow, even by caribbean standards....we waited over an hour for sandwiches at the bar because the restaurant was closed between designated meal times. At about the 45 minute point, the bartender told us the evening cook was running late, but didn't stick around long enough for us to ask if he was actually there or if he was still on the way...we would've been fine just going back to the room for some leftovers. At any rate, there wasn't much effort to apologize for the delay....not even a Hey, that Sprite is on us. All in all, this is a great resort, and I would stay here again, for sure. Perhaps I am more critical of f&b because that's my business, but I would've never charged someone for 2 sandwiches that were pushing an hour and 20 to arrive. I think most people would've just got up and left, as the bartender was never around to even see or catch them leaving. Anyway, maybe they were just having a bad day, I wouldn't hold it against them, but just be prepared to not be in any kind of hurry when food is involved.

Room tip: 59 was fabulous!
Date of stay: August 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Angela M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2018

Sugar Ridge is a great resort - good location on the island, good pools, good restaurants, however it's just showing signs of being unloved. I'd stay again, but feel a few small things need attention.

Location

Antigua is a small island, the main town of St Johns is about 15 minutes drive to the north, with English Harbour about 30 minutes to the east. The location is great, the only problem is it's not on the beach. The hotel do provide a very good shuttle service to two nearby beaches, but it's not the same as being able to just walk there. You can walk, but it's a 20 minutes. A local supermarket is about 10 minutes walk away. A future issue will also be the new hotel being built in front of Sugar Ridge - the views will be ruined.

Pools & Bars

Three pools that you can use, the two pools on ground level - quite small, but perfect for just cooling off in. The rooftop infinity pool is smaller, but again, ideal for just watching the sunset from. We went end August and were about the only people at either pool. The pool bar was good - Carleen manned the bar most days and was great fun, and really made you feel welcome. The drinks are reasonably priced. Food is available, however expensive. The opening times are odd. Pool bar closes at 5 (ish) at which point the restaurant takes over service - not ideal. The upper bar opens later, but doesn't have the same feel. The staff on the two bars are poles apart. Downstairs, they stay late (hours after they're due to finish work), chat with you, have fun with you. Upstairs, several times the staff were cashing up (and paying more attention to this) before we'd even finished - almost encouraging drinking up so they could go. Crap for a premium bar. Drinks were very good here though.

Rooms

The rooms are small, but enough for what's needed. Air conditioning was good, the bed very comfortable (and big), a small fridge was nice to have for drinks. The plunge pool is tiny - and as we were about the only guests at the hotel, made little use of this as we had the other pools to ourselves!

Housekeeping keeps the towels / linen neat, but I felt the whole hotel was dirty. There's a lot of little things that needs attention; our sink was falling off the wall, maintenance fixed it, but did need three goes. There's other examples of stuff like this - lights loose, rusty fittings, etc.... Even given the Caribbean factor, the rooms should be better for a 4 star resort. If this was in the Far East, it would be spotless (and food and drinks cheaper!).
The rooms need a deep clean. The bathroom also felt dirty.

Grounds

The ground are nice, lots of plants, trees, etc... which encourages wildlife such as humming birds and mongoose. However, again, scratch a little deeper and there's issues - broken lights, cracked steps, damaged stuff that's just been left. It doesn't detract from the enjoyment, but it should be better and if the Caribbean want to tackle the rising Far East tourism competition, they do need to up their game on stuff like this. The shuttle service to take you up and down the steep hills is very efficient. Road noise could be an issue for those who are after a really quite time (it's not that noticeable though).

Off Season

We went end August, which is the off season for Caribbean. However the hotel was dead. We were about the only guests on site many times. There can only have been 6 or so rooms being used. It feels like lowering costs at this time of year would be a sensible approach - other hurricane hotspots don't reduce to almost zero business, yet here they seems to accept this as normal.

Cats

There's several (50 or so) cats on site - the hotel states feral to keep mice / rats away, however they are domesticated, just not looked after. They're all ill, two kittens died during our 10 days there (and going by the number of kittens and pregnant cats, this must be normal, otherwise there'd be thousands!), yet the hotel maintain these are feral cats so don't need looking after. Wake up! They're domestic cats that aren't fed - that doesn't equal feral! A restaurant just down the road also had cats - none of these showed the same poor health as at Sugar Ridge.

Summary

Overall, a nice hotel, good facilities, but until the details are looked at, there's better available for the money.

Room tip: All rooms seem the same, just downstairs have pools, upstairs better views. Premium rooms have both.
Date of stay: August 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Chris M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Annie M, Public Relations Manager at Sugar Ridge Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 18 September 2018

Thank you Chris for taking the time to write such a lengthy review. We read and each every one and your comments have been passed along to relevant departments to look into .

Whilst its nice to read your positive comments its disappointing to read that not everything was as it should have been and for that we apologize.

Should you decide to come back to our friendly little island again It would be lovely to have you stay with us.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 August 2018 via mobile

Where do I start? Sugar Ridge is a gorgeous resort set on the hills of Jolly Harbour. It was more than we expected! A group of 3, inclusive of myself, were in 2 Premium rooms side by side (58 and 59). We could not have asked for more! It was so private, which is what we wanted, rather than the regular hotel scenes. The rooms were modern, the views amazing, and was steps away from the quiet infinity pool. Sunset up there was wow! The staff went above and beyond to assist in anyway. We were a bit skeptical that it was not on the beach front, but the shuttle service assists in getting the guests to and from the beaches. Valley Church beach is one of the most beautiful beaches, with powdery white sand, with no corals or stones. Toni at The Nest mixes great drinks, and gives the restaurant real vibes. The Reservation Manager, Jolie, was so helpful, and assisted with our requests. The shuttle service is just a call away, and it comes in 2 mins literally! Glendon, the shuttle driver was so helpful. Hats off to him, and the other guy who drove the golf cart. I was unable to catch his name. He was so helpful also, and he highly recommended Roti King. The Sugar Club lounge had nice soothing entertainment. There was a group that performed last Thursday, was real good! All the staff was so kind and caring. Daily breakfast was delicious, but I think it should have a little bit more options. The polish lady was so friendly. Hats off to everyone! We would definitely come back in the future!

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled with friends
Thank Angel123Trincity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Annie M, Public Relations Manager at Sugar Ridge Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 6 September 2018

What kind words....Thankyou .
We so appreciate that you took the time to review us and our staff will be delighted to hear you had good things to say not only about the resort but them personally too .

Please don't wait too long before you come back to see everyone.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2018 via mobile

Sugar Ridge is a lovely island resort lovingly built into the hillside overlooking the beautiful blue Caribbean. I earned this trip through Aveda’s Pure Privilege program, so had read some of the reviews posted here. There are so many positive reviews but was concerned about the several negative reviews. I think some of those negatives were based on expectations of a 5+star resort on latter islands or the mainland. This is a high quality resort, but remember, YOU ARE ON AN ISLAND, a small one, & that’s the great news! We loved our cooled, colonial style room that was on the ground floor, so we had the benefit
of a plunge pool where we watched dozens of hummingbirds feeding from a flamboyan tree in front of our room. There are a lot of steps and ramps here, so i’m not sure how handicapped accessible the resort is. You’ll get plenty of exercise walking, stair climbing & swimming here—no need to use the fitness facilities! The Aveda spa on the premises offered wonderful massages. I wish they used the Aveda products in the guest rooms—wouldn’t that be good marketing too? We found that both restaurants, in terms of atmosphere, food & service, to be excellent. Front desk staff and drivers are very amendable to ferrying is up
to the top of the mountain to Carmichael’s restaurant on the day we were just too tired to do the
climb—the view is spectacular, as is the adjoining infinity pool.
We adored the variety of feral cats who were accustomed
to guests walking around. It speaks to the management and staff respect for their natural environment, life cycle and inclusiveness.
We’d highly recommend Sugar Ridge.

Date of stay: July 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
2  Thank balanceseaker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Annie M, Public Relations Manager at Sugar Ridge Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 12 August 2018

What a lovely and in-depth review. We are sure other readers will find it really informative.

Its always lovely for us to read that our guests have enjoyed not only the hotel but the island and our staff.

Please don't leave it too long before coming back to see us again.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2018 via mobile

We booked Sugar Ridge because we wanted to be near a resort with a choice of restaurants, and there are several restaurants within walking distance ( take a torch).
The hotel was very well maintained, just as it looks in the photos, the food, especially the a la carte breakfast was consistently good and dining at Carmichaels at the top of the hill was a real treat and well worth the hike up there ( the hotel will provide lifts if you don't feel like the walk).

There is a regular shuttle to two splendid local beaches which are beautiful and clean and have great beach bars and restroom facilities.

The few minor issues that we had were dealt with promptly and did not inconvenience our stay.

However, what really made our holiday truly memorable were the wonderful staff at Sugar Ridge, they were so friendly and helpful. remembering our names and breakfast favourites. Yvonne on the towel exchange went out of her way to get some aloe Vera to help one of our party with a skin issue and Carleen at the pool bar made the best cocktails and kept us entertained.

Thanks to all of the staff that made our holiday an amazing experience, I am sorry I can not remember more people's names but thank you.

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled with family
2  Thank Louise H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Annie M, Public Relations Manager at Sugar Ridge Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 12 August 2018

Thank you Louise for your wonderful comments. We will make sure the staff see your review and - they will be thrilled to read that they helped make your stay a fabulous one.
Please be sure to come and see us all again soon.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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