Biras Creek Resort
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Historical Traveler Reviews Biras Creek Resort North Sound
My husband and I are busy professional who just could not get it together to plan a wedding. We decided to elope to Biras Creek. We had a perfect time. The trip to Biras from Phoenix is a long one but went off without a hitch. Within minutes of our arrival, we ate a delicious lunch and rode our bikes (they come with the cabin) to the beach, where in the middle of June, there was not another soul, and had a two hour nap.The food is excellent. It's true that the meal times are narrow but we didn't not view it as problematic. There is nothing to do at Biras but relax, so why not carve an hour out of your day and plan to be at lunch? This is a quiet, very secluded, place with very few guests. We snorkelled every day (including on our wedding day), napped, read, and sunned ourselves. Perfect.The service is what I'd call invisible. It's not the typical resort with waitresses at the pool. You can pretty much wander the grounds unfettered. Have beverages in your room, if you desire. There are trade offs for peace and quiet, after all.The wedding arrangements were all taken care of by Cleo Bradley at Biras. She was great. And within moments of tying the knot, we were on the sunset cruise!I'd say the median age of the guests when we were there is 35.
All we encountered were unpretentious professionals. It was unlike anwhere we'd ever been. We hope to go back for an anniversary...
Try Little Dix or Peter Island instead
Our stay at Biras Creek last December was our fourth visit to the Caribbean. It was also the most miserable trip we have ever taken.
1. The food While dinner was prepared well, at about the level of a nice neighborhood bistro, the buffets served for breakfast and lunch suffered from both a limited selection and poor food handling practices. The milk on the breakfast buffet was sour. it seemed like they brought the same milk out day after day, sitting on the buffet in the heat. The hot foods were not kept hot, nor the cold foods cold, resulting in a nasty case of food poisoning that the staff didn't care about. I didn't even get an "I'm sorry" when I complained.
2. The beach. The beach is very windy, compared the the sheltered bays at other comparable resorts. Every day we were there, you couldn't read, sand constantly blew in your face and it was a bit chilly, all because of the winds. We avoided the beach and spent the afternoon in our room.
3. The bugs The place is swarming with bugs. I know bugs are a problem on any island, but most resorts make some effort to control them. I didn't get a single bite at Little Dix and got Dozens at Biras Creek.
I'm told it is because of the marsh at the center of the Biras property. When it rains, freshwater mixes in the marsh creating bug breeding grounds. Also the cabins are swarming with roaches at night.
I had other complaints, like the uncaring staff, the uncofortable beds, the lack of hot water, the limited food serving hours, the small staff that meant I couldn't get a glass of water at 3 in the afternoon in the bar, let alone a soda, because all the staff was off, and the worst massage I've ever had in my life.
On our third day there, we fled back to Little Dix to try and save what was left of our vacation. Little Dix was as wonderful as ever, but we were so sick, ichy and exausted from Biras that we returned home a few days later.
One word: Perfection!
I fear my written words will not do the place justice. My wife and I (ages 28 and 33 respectively) went to Biras Creek for a week in early December, 2003. It was perfect. If you are looking for limbo contests, kareoke and dance clubs - this is NOT the place for you (Go to a Sandals if you want that). As a matter of fact, we were in bed every night by 10pm, as most of the crowd seemed to be. Biras is quiet and classy but not at all stuffy. The staff is as warm as the constant breeze which seems to never cease. The grounds are beautifully manicured, with fun and easy walking and biking trials leading to different sections of the resort - don't let the 1/4 mile bike ride to the swimming beach discourage you - the trial is wide and basically flat and the surrounding vegetation smells intoxicating (dont miss the lunch beach barbeque on Mondays Wednesdays and Fridays - delicous spred). The crowd was almost exclusively couples in their 30's, 40's and 50's, mostly from the east coast of the United States and from England. Do not miss the trip to "the Baths", the snorkeling there is amazing. The food served in the main dining room is 5 star and absolutely delicious - its so rich that I dont know if I would be able to eat it for more than 1 week at a time - we went to bed very full every night. Take the sunset sail aboard the Mary Irene. Captain Jon and his wife Monique are wonderful and interesting people who live aboard the 44 foot vessel at the main Biras dock. They are full of interesting stories and are very knowledgible about the area and the sea. Pictures dont do the place justice. The main buildings are beautiful - stone and wood. The Arawak Pavilion is one of the most beautiful rooms I've ever been in - the web site pictures of it dont capture its beauty. Ive read some of the negative reviews and I can't understand what the hell those people are talking about. I assume they are part of the Manhattan "brass and class" crowd. We had a beachfront suite which was not big, but it was very new, very clean and very stylish ala Carribean. We are going back - no reason to gamble on other places when Biras fit exactly what we were looking for.
Wonderful place for a honeymoon!
My wife and I went here for our honeymoon on July 2003. We saw the resort on theknot as one of the top ten "most romantic" spots for a honeymoon. We were not disappointed with that description. This is the place to go if you want seclusion, and a quiet, romantic, but adventurous atmosphere. If you want exciting nightlife, go somewhere else. Upon our arrival, we were met by one of the staff, who immediately gave us a guided tour of the property. Our bags were taken directly to our room during our tour. Once we got to our room, we used our complimentary bikes to tour the property. There are some great hiking trails that range from easy to difficult. One trail leads you to the Bitter End Yacht Club which has restuarants and a small grocery store as well as a full dive shop. We went there to buy snacks and alcohol. The Pusser's Rum is very inexpensive and of excellent quality! We used the complimentary Boston Whaler to go on numerous secluded picnics on neighboring islands as well as self guided snorkeling. However, you must go on the guided snorkeling tours to Indian Rock/The Baths, go on the sunset cruise on the resort's yacht, and the trip to Anegada was fun, but disappointing since the restuarant ran out of their famous Anegada lobster. The service at Biras Creek was mixed. The bartenders were wonderful as well as the front desk staff. However, their initial reception can be cool at first. My guess is that they deal with snobbish guests who expect it to be waited on hand and foot, and it's not that type of place. A smile and a laugh can go very far, and they definitely remembered us each time we came back to reserve a picnic lunch and Boston Whaler. Be advised, the restuarant is definitely a fine dining establishment for dinner. The food is absolutely amazing. The pace is slow and for people who want to enjoy the romantic setting for dinner. We ended up using the picnic basket option for lunch since we did not want that same atmosphere/food in the middle of the day. They also offer a voucher option for dinner to eat at the Fat Virgin, which really is a great place to hang out and eat/drink. The chef there was a fun person who hails from California. She makes the food from scratch, so even a hamburger does not look like any hamburger I've ever had, but the taste was incredible! The conch fritters were also made from scratch and were wonderful. One fun side note, there are some large Iguanas on the property who may scare you initially, but they are harmless and a little shy. But, you can feed them flowers by hand, and if you feel a little adventurous, they will take the flower out of your mouth! Makes for a fun picture to show back home.I read some of the negative reviews prior to deciding on making the reservation. I was a little concerned at first, but my fears were diminished once I got there. The bedroom is the only that is air conditioned, it's true. If you leave the doors closed with the A/C on, then when you return, you have a cool place to relax. It's the tropics for goodness sakes, so there's going to be humidity! My only real complaint is that the king sized bed is really two smaller mattresses put together, so there can be a gap that becomes very obvious as the night goes by. We met Michael and his wife during the evening tea service. They were very nice and I had a pleasant conversation with Michael. When we left the resort at the end of our trip, Michael and his wife walked our group to the dock and waved goodbye as we left. It was a nice personal touch. Everyone on our group was sad to leave. The trip was worth the cost, and my wife and I plan to return again. When we walked to the Bitter End Yacht club and saw the kids/teens there, it really reinforced how happy we were to go to a place that predominantly catered to adults.
Small Resort on Beautiful Virgin Gorda
A delightful resort with many positive attributes, yet a few drawbacks.
Arrival and departure is always by boat since no roads access Biras Creek. This isolation is one of the attractive features for most people, along with the fantastic views from atop the hills upon which Biras Creek sits.
We planned for a week of scuba diving which we arranged through the hotel upon arrival. Biras Creek does not have their own scuba operator, therefore they make guest reservations with neighboring resorts who have full service scuba centers. Allowing Biras to arrange the scuba reservations was a mistake as Biras mixed up our reservations even after we repeatedly checked and double checked with the resort concerning our plans. In the end we realized that it would have been better to have made the reservations with the scuba center directly ourselves.
Food service although elegantly presented was limited in times of service. This is certainly understandable in such a small resort, but extremely frustrating if your activities detain you past meal times.
The lunch barboque buffet served on the beach was available only for one hour. If you arrived after that time, service was terminated. This resulted in more than one mad dash to the beach for lunch after our morning diving. If you arrived toward the end of a service time, items on the buffet were severely picked over or just plain gone.
The dining room staff who served dinner in evenings were very pleasant and friendly, and most dishes were well prepared. As the evening progressed and more guests arrived in the dining room, table service became slower and slower. Intervals between courses were directly correlated to the number of persons in the dining room. On more than one occassion we left the dining room without waiting for dessert.
We found the rooms to be adequate in size, clean, but not luxurious.
Our room had a covered porch with lounge chairs and table, a small sitting room with an undercounter refrigerator, a bedroom ( the only airconditioned room in the suite), a walk-in closet with shelves, and a bath with an outdoor shower. It would have been very desirable and much more pleasant to have had the bath airconditioned as litte air flowed into the bathroom and moisture from the outdoor shower, wet towels and wet bathing suits kept the bath close to a sauna like environment. The resort also provides a small flashlight for walking to dinner or along the paths after sundown. Paths are unpaved, unlite, sandy, steep in sections with occassional steps. This resort is not for the infirmed or feeble.
The swimming beach is about one half mile from the cottages, easily reached by bike upon a rather flat sandy path. Numerous water sports equipment is available at the beach along with friendly staff instruction and assistance. Fresh, clean beach towels were abundant both at the pool and the beach.
Upon departure our bill was correct. Departure instructions were provided the day before leaving and departure was smooth and without incident.
A Week in Paradise
We have traveled the Caribbean extensively for the past 25 years ... St.Croix, St. John, St. Thomas, St. Martin, Antigua, and other islands. Last year we had a wonderful family vacation at a 4-bedroom villa on Mahoe Bay in Virgin Gorda, BVI. We had a delightful experience and quickly fell in love with this beautiful, unspoiled, and "friendly" island.As we were preparing to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary we searched for a way that we could return to this lovely place ... but this time we wanted a sophisticated, yet causal and very private resort atmosphere. We found it all at Biras Creek.Overly commercialized vacation spots don't appeal to us and we know that the Caribbean doesn't cater to the "brass and glass" hotel crowd. So we weren?t surprised that Biras was just a bit on the ?rustic side?. Biras Creek was just perfect ... isolated and not overdone, but with all the amenities. The views were breathtaking; the hiking trails were great fun; the food was 4-star; the staff was friendly; and the accommodations were very nicely done. Most importantly, we were left alone. The staff was available when we needed them, but they didn?t ?hover?.The acid test comes when we are departing and we decide whether this is a place that we would consider for a return visit. The answer is a resounding YES! This excellent resort is on par with our stay at Jumby Bay in Antigua a few years ago ... and that's saying a lot.Thanks to the entire Biras Creek staff for making our anniversary celebration so memorable. We will return!
In planning our wedding, my husband and I were searching for a honeymoon location and accomodations that compared to our previous visits to Cap Juluca, Anguilla, the Four Seasons, Nevis, and La Semana, St. Martin. In reading an article in the Robb Report we became interested and investigated Biras Creek, Virgin Gorda.
We decided to celebrate our honeymoon at Biras Creek. We arrived on July 8, 2000 and were greeted by Georgina. We had anticipated rooms of high quality, but unfortunately were given a room with inadequate air conditioning, shutters that allowed the air conditioning to escape, a poorly decorated facility, and deceased insects on the floor. Our biggest concern was that the air conditioning unit was not sufficient in decreasing the humidity in our room; I have asthma and need to have reprieve from the humidity. Although we both felt that the Robb Report and the Biras Creek web site and brochure were misleading we accepted our situation.
Our room faced the ocean and had a sitting room. Upon arrival I decided to go running. As I sat on the wicker loveseat in the sitting room I felt a pinch and assumed that I was poked by a piece of wicker. I had my husband check the back of my thigh and he saw a red bump. His opinion was that I had been bitten by a spider, not poked by wicker, because there wer two punture wounds.
During the night I was unable to sleep because my asthma was making it difficult for me to breathe. I used my inhaler yet this did not help. At this point my husband and I assumed that it was becuase of the insufficient air conditioning. At the same time my leg was beginning to hurt and I felt sick to my stomach.
By the morning the "bite" on my leg had swollen and was extremly painful. My husband had to assist me in walking because it was difficult for me to move my leg. He and I went to the registration area first thing in the morning and asked for medical assistance. Suzette looked at my upper thigh and told me that it was probably a reaction to a misquito bite and gave me Benadryl creme and Sting Ease. We asked if she would contact Nurse Victoria twice after this and the registration ingnored our request.Suzette informed us that there was a local celebration occurring and that the "helicopter nurse" was attending that. Later, when we again asked to see this nurse we were told that the nurse had a more serious injury to attend to than my allegic reaction to a misquito bite and an asthma attack.
As the day progressed (July 9th)my conditoin worsened. We continually asked for medical assistance. Finally, my husband contacted the adjacent resort (the Bitter End Yacht Club) and asked them to transfer us to that resort in hopes that their more adequately air conditioned rooms could help me to gain control over my breathing problems. We also were in great need of medical attention and hoped that we could find it there.
By the evening of our second day my leg was swollen and I could no longer walk alone.Thank goodness that we were able to move to the Bitter End Yacht Club to find medical assistance. Unfortunately, by the time we had moved a 24 hour time frame had lapsed. At the hospital on the island of Tortola we were told by the physician that I needed immediate surgery because I was bitten by a Black Widow Spider which had irreversibly damaged the tissue in my leg and caused my asthma reaction.
I was transported back to the states and had immediate surgury on my upper thigh. The surgeon had to remove a three inch diameter section of tissue all the way down to the bone. I was hopitalized for a week and had to have an additonal surgery. Our medical bills far exceeded 10,000 dollars, I missed two-weeks of work, and have a very large scar on my leg.
After the trauma and healing we contacted Biras Creek and were referred to there insurance agency. The insurance agency denied us any reciprocation. After seeking legal advice we realized that the only way to find justification for this was to file a lawsuit within the international court system; the time, effort, and expense of such an endeavor was too much to proceed with. Therefore, I am attempting to notify others, who may be interested in vacationing at Biras Creek, that they do have Black Widow Spiders on the property and, in our opinion, negligible employees and lack of medical attention. If I would have been seen by Nurse Victoria, the "helicopter nurse", I could have been given the antivenom within 24 hours and all my symptoms would have disappeared. Needless to say my husband and I would have been able to enjoy our honeymoon and I would not have had to endure the pain and anguish that was associated with this unfortunte experience.
Beware! Once you go to Biras Creek, no other Caribbean or ocean resort will ever make you happy again. Biras Creek has it all - solitude and relaxation, water activities galore (if you want), congenial staff and fellow guests, fantastic food and views to remember for a lifetime. "Casual elegance" is the key of this hotel's charm. The "castle" and 33 secluded guest cottages are positioned so as to reap the cool ocean breezes while providing stunning views of Gorda Sound and the luxury yachts at anchor. Guests bicycle down short sandy avenues to reach the idyllic private beach and the marina.
Things not to be missed: a garden tour with Alvin; hiking the hill trails for 360-degree views of Virgin Gorda; your own private snorkeling and beach excursions using the hotel's complimentary hobie cats and boston whalers; early morning swims in the ocean-side pool; chatting over cocktails in the open air lounge; a sunset sail on the Mary Irene. The staff clearly takes pride in the hotel and was, without exception, friendly and helpful. We especially appreciated Lennox, Guy and Kate. Finally, the food is as good as any we have enjoyed in five-star restaurants in New York, LA or DC.
All in all, Biras Creek seems like a stay at a private Caribbean estate, complete with teary hugs and goodbyes at the dock on departure.
BIRAS CREEK - World Class and yet out of this world!
Biras Creek is special. Sure, a lot of places claim or lay claim to this boast. Biras Creek can really do this however.
Why? What's so different?
For a World Class resort it is very 'natural'. Not everything on the 140 acre Estate is overly manicured. Biras Creek loves nature. "Iguana Crossing" signs pepper the non-tarmac and dusty roads that wend their way around the Estate. The Iguana's have right of way and show it as you'll often find them laying down in the road as you approach on the Bicycle that comes with your cottage for the entirity of your stay. The beautiful flora and fauna of the Estate are tended to by numerous Gardeners, but again, the Estate's wildness is there all around you.
It is an Estate for Adults.
For a start it's on a part of Virgin Gorda that cannot be accessed by road. To get to Biras Creek you have to go by boat (all part of the fun). As the Estate only caters for 60 Guests or less at any one time, privacy and exclusivity are completely guaranteed. This is really of benefit to Honeymooners, Couples, of Families, or indeed anyone, wanting to spend time lots of quality time with each other in a magical place. You are greeted by the Estate Manager, Michael, who is an extremely charming, professional, and discreet person, who will attend to anything that you may need and does so speedily and with calm, effortless efficiency.
Accommodation are cottages either on the Beach (highly recommended) or near to these and still on the beach but tucked away in the 'gardens'. Accommodation is charming, but simple. If you want grandiose and exceesive oppoulence, go somewhere else. If you want beautifully simple and therefore simply beautiful, Biras is for you.
Biras Creek has it's own dock, beautiful Private Beach in a delicious sheltered cove (with it's own huge beachside bar)where Barbecues are cooked up for you 3 lunchtimes a week and where all manner of Lasers, Hobie Cats etc are there for your use for free, with Instructor there if you'd like to try any of these for the first time.
There are floodlit Tennis Courts, a heated pool on another Beach on the Estate. An elegant and huge Colonial style wooden built room known as The Arawak Room overlooks the breathtakingly beautiful North Sound and Biras Creek dock, and serves English Tea everyday @ 4.30pm. The Restaurant is simply stunning. A stone built 'castle' again overlooking the North Sound, it is large, and serves some of the finest cuisine in the entire Carribean. A dress code applies for dinner, but it is fine, and the men only need wear trousers and a a shirt and the ladies must look appropriately smart for dinner.
A beautiful bar adjoins the Restaurant and steps lead from both to beautiful terraces again overlooking the calm, azure blue waters of the North Sound. It really has to be one of the most Romantic settings in the world.
Little motorised Boston Whalers are yours to take out for free with a picnic (made for you, and that includes gorgeous food, fresh linen table cloth, etc in a cool box). I had never 'captained' a boat before but they are very easy to operate, and off you into the safe sheltered waters on the North Sound and go look for an Island to hole up on. There are lots of Islands to choose from, and lots of the most beautiful, deserted Beaches. I cannot express how much fun, how wonderful this is to do. If you are late back (and they like you back within 3-4 hours) someone will come check on you.
There are trips every day to farther flung Islands and at Breakfast one of the staff is sat in the Bar, and if at any point you have perused the huge and helpful Brochure in your cottage and fancy an Activity, or Trip or Massage, or whatever, just mention it after breakfast, and they will get on their mobile phone in front of you and order the boat, the masseur, whatever. All done easily, with no fuss. Everything is very, very, very laid back at Biras Creek. But like a Swan swimming, beneath the surface, believe me, much is going on that you don't see in order to make sure everything runs smoothly and beautifully.
I Scuba Dived on one of the best wrecks in the Carribean, and in and around a whole host of Islands. I had done my theory back home and passed my certificate whilst doing these dives. The Turtles, Fish and Stingray were everywhere. My partner snorkelled in some of the best snorkelling waters in the world and enjoyed massages on the huge balcony of our beach cottage whilst I was out. We visited lots of the British Virgin Islands, like the lazy, serene Anegada, the Capital, Tortola, Sea Dog, Mosquito, Necker and Salt Islands. How come Necker? Isn't that Richard Branson's private Island? No Beach in the BVI's is private. You can pull up anywhere.
The BVI's are deliciously under-developed. They are raw and beautiful, unlike the USVI's which like many Carribean Islands are used to enormous Liners pulling in and thousands of passengers disembarking for a few hours ransacking of shops and restaurants. The BVI's are the very antithesis of this.
My wife and I cannot recommed this Oasis of peace, beauty, and luxury enough. It simply, and amazingly still, one of the less-trumpeted but most special and amazing resorts in the world - long may it remain so.
Relaxing, romantic, incredible destination
This place is indescribable. If I could grant the world a wish, it would be that every person on earth be able to stay just a few days at this resort. The staff is excellent, the food is great with an amazing variety, and the scenery... I guess the best word is paradise. My wife and I went here on our honeymoon as well as the Westin on St. Johns. The Westin and St. Johns is nice but if we were to do it again I would stay only at Biras Creek. There is
so much to do and the food is so good and the place is just so remarkably romantic that we are talking about going back again. Be prepared, though for a tough trip to get there. We flew to St. Thomas and ferried to the BVI (I loved it because I love boats) but it is probably better to try to fly to Tortola and ferry from there.
TripAdvisor Reviews Biras Creek Resort North Sound
Travel Blogs from North Sound
... the wipers instead of the indicators is not as embarrassing as sounding the fog horn! As we navigate along the channel Peter gives another of his talks. Today it is on the operation of the ship and a little local knowledge. Anchorage is at Yost Van Dyke bay on Tortola Island. Many yachts moored in the bay so i suspect the NYE thing is starting to take off. Sharan spends time with Chris our dive instructor on diving theory and contemplates whether or ...
... crew member and newly Master licensed Captain Wally, and long-time friends Paul and wife Linda. They would not all be with us at once. The choreography of their visits revolved around the regatta dates. Bob and Beckie would arrive first on February 19 and enjoy some island time with us (hopefully making a trip to nearby Saba) and then Wally would join all of us for the first regatta. After the first regatta was over Bob and Beckie ...
... Bay with its fabulous view of the surrounding islands and waterways. We took the dinghy to the nearby day use mooring balls for snorkeling. While deserted at night, the mooring balls are quite popular during the day in pleasant conditions and we scooted around a bit when we could detect an imminent departure, waiting patiently for them to leave their ball. This reef area did not allow for the anchoring of a ...
... some good snorkeling easily accessible from the beach. The trip to Charlotte Amalie was uneventful, and Donna and Clara departed as scheduled, leaving Dave to settle into boat maintenance chores and routine "harbor watch" while anchored in the harbor.
Hank and Seale arrived in Charlotte Amalie on sistership S/V FLASH on March 30th and Dave had a very nice dinner aboard FLASH ...
... was now turning into dinner. We were a bit bummed out, so we just went back to the villa. Greer had leftover food that he was planning on eating for dinner anyways, and I had dry brown rice and a can of chickpeas, so we decided to stay in. Greer ate his food and I made sauteed chickpeas and rice for dinner. After eating we both felt much better, but very tired. So we chilled out in the villa and played gin, watched TV and read, before it was time to go to sleep.