A Tour of The Verandah Resort & Spa

ANTIGUA – The second stop of Travel Agent’s four-day tour of Elite Island Resorts’ Antigua properties landed me at the 174-room, all-inclusive Verandah Resort & Spa. This is the newest of Elite’s Antigua properties, opening in 2007.

Unlike the first resort we stayed at, the couples-oriented Galley Bay Resort & Spa, this resort was much more family-focused. There was still a heavier focus on couples here, but unlike Galley Bay, where guests need to be at least 16 years old, this resort has a “Kidz Club,” a children’s swimming pool and menu items in the resort’s buffet restaurant, all catering to children.

It still allows couples to enjoy some privacy, however. There is also an adults-only swimming pool. There is Nicole’s Restaurant, the only restaurant that is not included in the all-inclusive plan and has menu items such as steak and lobster that are geared toward adults. And the Kidz Club is open until 10 p.m., which is significantly later than most Kids clubs I visit and essentially allows a husband and wife to spend a good portion of the evening alone.

All of the resort’s rooms are essentially the same size with the same layout so there is technically no level of room categories. However, each room offers different views with the most requested room coming in the form of the Waterfront View rooms. There are roughly 80 of these and, like the other rooms, it comes with a flat-screen TV, a king-sized bed and a balcony.

The United Kingdom dominates the market here as 4 -percent of the guests at this resort come from there, while 35 percent come from the U.S.

It also has a conference room that can fit about 80 people; two 24-hour tennis courts that both offer free instructions from a professional on property on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays; and free WiFi at the resort’s main swimming pool. There is no Internet in the rooms.

The 24-hour fitness gym is way bigger than Galley Bay’s, offering about five treadmills and at least triple the amount of space. The spa is home to four treatment rooms, including one couples room.

We recommend the resort for couples and families. The resort is also in the midst of completing six double-bed rooms with hillside views, which can be perfect for family reunions.

The visit gave us a good idea of the diversity amongst the three Elite Island Resorts Antigua hotels. Both resorts were great, but both offer something completely different. We just arrived at our next and final stop of our product tour, The St. James’s Club.

Keep visiting here for a profile of that resort as well as other updates from our press trip to Antigua.

Visit www.eliteislandresorts.com.