I have some great advice for dining. I do believe that the meal plan is the best option, because the prices can really add up. It is better to add on the gratuity than add on real expensive food plus the gratuity!
The best option is to select a meal plan. For $75 a day per person, you can enjoy an endless buffet breakfast and dinner and bring snacks to hold you over in between.
You could pay for the more expensive meal plan (almost $50 more) but why bother when you can only eat so much food? There are a lot of restaurants to choose from, and probably enough that you will not have to repeat a meal unless you want to.
Decide what you will do for Lunch: Either bring snacks/fill up on breakfast/eat breakfast near lunch time OR spend around $10 per person for lunch. Make sure to get the refillable soda cups
Yes, you can make reservations and you will want to do so a week before traveling. Atlantis offers US phone numbers so you do not have to worry about long distance charges. Make reservations for ALL DINNERS prior to arriving, and if you choose to cancel a reservation because you fell in love with one of your meals and would like to repeat it, cancel according to the resort policy (usually 24 hours notice) or leave your last night open and book the meal when you are on the resort.
Watch out for the snack refrigerator in your room, there is no key and if you happen to remove an item you will get charged for it, because they have a sensor on it, even if you just take it out and put it right back, you wll get charged for it. Bring a cooler and drinks, crystal light, water bottles. Bring snacks.
I have much more info here: http://www.ehow.com/how_6007914_save-...
I stayed at the Atlantis for a week in December. We did not do the meal plan, which I preferred because the restaurants around the resort were incredible. We ate at Mesa Grill (at the Cove), Dune (at the Ocean Club), Nobu (twice), Cafe Martinique (best meal) and Carmines (family style - don't make big plans to go out after!) We had the breakfast buffet every morning, which was costly but delicious with a lot of variety and friendly service. We also ate at Atlas in the Royal Tower and Murray's, but neither were very memorable. Let me know how your trip goes - I loved it there and wish I could be going again in March!!
We just got back, but had a kitchen as we did timeshare right there next to Atlantis (actually tucked in between Marina Village and Harborside). I'm not sure what your $79 per day per person gets you but sounds like breakfast is included so if it's lunch & dinner for $79 and you can dine at all of the places within - I would do it. It's very expensive and even at say Murray's Deli (Marina Village) with two sandwiches, 2 sodas - came to $45.00 (most restaurant already will include the 15%). And this is low end so even if you did that for lunch and dinner, you are ahead of the game. Most entres at halfway decent places start at $32-$45 - eeeeek, for something we can all cook.
We found fantastic local places walking distance from our resort, at great prices. We prefer local native food, where the tourist don't go but keep in mind we walked at lot to keep the lbs from creeping up on us. I also love to cook, so we grabbed some local food and some fantastic bone in sirloin at the grocery store and cooked one night too.
As far as Atlantis, kept hearing great things about Carmine's while we were there (right there on Marina Village Atlantis) and of course Bobby Flay's place.
We found a great place on Paradise Isl for our last night, overlooking the harbor - excellent food at decent prices ($18-$40 entres, $7-$10 apps) called Columbus Tavern. Ambiance was great, food was phenominal, service was fantastic (we found this was lacking a bit throughout our dining experiences - except for the real native local places - Potter's Cay (under the bridge) and Fish Fry at Arawak Cay - awesome friendly folks.
Have a blast, you won't be disappointed if you just accept that it is expensive. Water Taxi is the best way to get to Nassau and back (we saw Nicholas Cage - waved to us from his yacht outside his home). If you like cigars, do Graycliff - tour the factory and watch them doing it. Easy walk across the exit bridge to Potter's Cay - Mckenzies is fantastic and the most crowded for great local food.
I'm ready to go back!!!!
I called and specifically asked about these meal plans - they include breakfast and dinner, and the dinners that are included through the dining plan at the exclusive restaurants (Dune, Mesa Grille, Cafe Martinique, Nobu, etc) have a $55 credit at the exclusive restaurants. Still very well worth it, but don't be fooled into expecting that it is an all inclusive plan.
There are a big special right now - pay for 3 nighyts, get 4, $89 ( no longer $79) for meal plan, including Breakfast and dinner.....
As I said in another thread, it's still crawfish season and crab season here! If you have a kitchen, go buy your goodies and cook at home! Mmmmmm........
If not, Cafe Matisse is a must - in the courtyard. The ambience is amazing, and the food is usually wonderful. If it isn't, then the company and the setting should very much compensate!!!
On PI - Mesa Grille is really good, Dune is amazing, a lot of others, for the price are very very good. But, the price is astronomical. "Local" food is FAT - deep fried or cooked with lots of fat. Conch chowder and conch salad, however, are much less so. Just stay away from the conch fritters if you're trying to be healthy. They are very much deep fried and very much battered.
Potters Cay (under the PI bridge coming back to Nassau) has lots of shacks for conch chowder, conch salad, conch fritters, fried fish, and good cold beer. Earlier in the day, you can also find fresh live crab. However, for cooked food, be prepared to have to wait one or two beers' time!!
Have fun here on our little island! There's wonderful fishing this time of year! If you go on a charter and catch some dolphin/mahi mahi/dorado, ask to keep it and have chef cook it up for you wherever - preferably with some nice mango/pineapple salsa.......roasted tatoes.....mmmmmmm
I've been there many times, but not since 2001. Many of the restaurant menus are on the website. Entrees run as high as $60. From what I gather, the 4 of us can easily run up a gratuity tab of $100 at a nice dinner. There are places to go in the vicinity that I remember and some moderate options on the resort. However, the meal plans "sounds like a bargain". I started the post so that others with recent experience can chime in. I work near Nobu in NYC and don't even understand how it would work on the mealplan since the menu is not setup as appetizer, entree, salads, etc. (except for dessert of course). Anyway, feedback welcome and we're booked for the first week of March, so when I come back, I'll post.
It has been 10 years since my visit to Atlantis. I took the meal plan and was very glad I did. The food prices were very high for everything. the 15% tip became significant. They had 2 buffet places. One for 3 meals a day and one fancy dinner only. The plan was kind of unclear about non alcoholic beverages, juice/soda. They had a fabulous jewish style deli called Murray's that had pastrami that was every bit as good as Katz's on a good night. Sandwich price was about $15 in 1999 and a little russian on the side was $3 more. If we hadnt taken the meal plan we would've been screwed. Get the meal plan so you don't get indigestion from the bill.
Also, carefully monitor your bill on the tv menu during your stay. We had several different charges show up that had to be addressed. Atlantis is a beautiful place that had some serious issues with maintenance of air conditioning and hosting of the casino.
If you are a gambler play craps or other table games because the slots did not pay off. They did not have to provide the payout odds and kept them a secret. The Aquariums are beyond belief bring camcorder and camera.
You can go off site and get some real bargians on bottles of liquor.
as luck would have it, i just logged in to search for similar information.
i'm planning a trip, and this place seemed to meet a lot of the dissimilar criteria of me and my travel companion.
would it be too much to ask to report back after your vacation, to tell us about the food and overall experience?
a few things i was considering about the meal plan--
they tack on mandatory 15% gratuity based on the retail value of what you ordered, not the "prix fixe" set up you are actually getting.
those "free" beverages are gonna add up, haha.
i was considering calling to ask the following:
are there websites for the major restaurants, so i could get an idea of the a la carte prices
if not, what is the baseline/average for each meal?
are there other non-resort dining options? (since it's an island, i was doubtful, but it doesn't hurt to ask)
average cocktail price