It’s been a good year for Club Carlson loyalists, as throughout the year there have been endless chances to earn at least double base points in their hotel loyalty scheme. Several of the Club Carlson promotions have offered a minimum of double base points, sometimes even triple points, when staying at their properties such as Radisson Blu, Radisson Blu Edwardian, Park Plaza and Park Inn hotels. The amount of stays this year at Club Carlson properties, mainly Radisson Blu, has boosted my own points balance by at least 100,000 points in their hotel scheme. Previous stays in the past few months alone have included the Radisson Blu Plaza Oslo Hotel in Norway, the Radisson Blu Royal Viking Stockholm Hotel in Sweden, and the Radisson Blu Edwardian London Heathrow Hotel here in the UK. To add to the list back in November I stayed at one of their Radisson branded properties on the Caribbean island of Barbados, the Radisson Aquatica Resort Barbados Hotel – located just outside Bridgetown.
The first thing to mention is that Barbados is super expensive, almost as much as remote islands in the Maldives. The second point is that Barbados doesn’t have Uber, as you would expect, so you need to arrange for the hotel to collect you or grab a taxi from the rank outside Grantley Adams International Airport. If you’re travelling to Bridgetown expect to pay around £40 for a one-way taxi transfer.
The Radisson Aquatica Resort Barbados Hotel is located outside of Bridgetown at the south end of Pebbles Beach. The position of the hotel is great, seconds away from the beach, and minutes away from local restaurants if you don’t plan on walking into Bridgetown. The hotel itself is quite small with just over 100 rooms and suites, and in some places could do with a little cosmetic work.
This stay was booked using Club Carlson Gold points, a total of 44,000 points per night for a standard award night. As with the majority of Club Carlson properties you have the option to book a superior award night. Personally I never do this as staff usually upgrade the booking if you have Club Carlson Gold status (you can gain instant Club Carlson Gold status by signing up to an American Express Platinum card). That’s exactly what happened on this stay as the woman at check-in quickly upgraded the room to an Ocean View room. These rooms at the time were priced at £400 a night, which for the hotel seems very expensive, though this is Barbados. However it did mean that the Club Carlson Gold points were valued at 1.1 pence each, which is exceptional.
The hotel is a mid-level property with limited facilities of a restaurant, bar, and outside pool. The main draw to the hotel is the location with it being metres away from the beach. If you are looking for a higher quality hotel the Hilton Barbados Hotel is just up the road.
Upstairs hallway on the 6th floor
King-size bed and full sized desk
Large bed and L shaped balcony on two sides of the room
Full size desk, television and welcome gift (water)
Small coffee machine
Two bottles of water as a welcome gift
His and her’s sinks in the bathroom
The usual Radisson branded toiletries
Great view from the room of the sea
On the other balcony a nice view from the room of Pebbles beach leading to Bridgetown
Restaurant area for breakfast, lunch snacks and evening meals
Clean, but very small pool for the size of the hotel
Radisson sun-loungers directly outside the hotel on the beach