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first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

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Wilmington, Delaware
posts: 11
first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

We are in our early 30s no kids- looking for an all inclusive resort that has a big beach, clear water, good alcoholic drinks & decent food. Need help deciding between sunset beach resort

, RIU Montego Bay or the Hilton Rose Hall. Any feedback appreciated:)

United States
posts: 7,593
reviews: 87
1. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

All three of the resorts you list are all inclusive so rate them equal on that point.

You say you have no kids. At the Hilton and Sunset Beach you will find lots of them. Both are 'family' resorts with Sunset Beach normally having the most. Of the three resorts normally look for the fewest kids at the RIU Montego Bay (but there will be some children there).

"a big beach"

None of the hotels in the Montego Bay area have a 'big' beach. The largest beach will be at Sunset Beach with about 600 yards of beach.

"good alcoholic drinks & decent food"

This is a very subjective question based on how you define 'good' and 'decent'. All of the resorts meet these definitions in my mind (but maybe or maybe not in yours). Of the three I would pick the Hilton for food and drink.

Hartford...
posts: 145
reviews: 14
2. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

We stayed at Iberostar Grand and Secrets in the past. Both were great resorts, but I liked Secrets better due to location of the resort (more scenic area).

Orlando, Florida
Destination Expert
for Jamaica
posts: 4,302
reviews: 24
3. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

If you are looking for a "big beach" then you need to look outside of Montego Bay to Negril. They have the best beaches, look at Long Bay which is part of 7 Mile Beach. There are several all inclusives there, I would suggest Couples Swept Away, they meet all of your requirements and then some.

Cedar Rapids, Iowa
posts: 3,097
reviews: 19
4. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

For the BEACH vacation you need to go to Negril With that sais if you want MoBay I have not stayed at Hilton but have stayed at the other two. Hands down I would pick RIU over Sunset. We went to SSBR and there were massive kids. The beach was very rocky and parts of the resort were very run down. Pool was run down, Disco run down. The specialty resturants were Ok but the main buffet was no good and the beach grill was horrible food. The entertaiment at night was also bad. The RIU is all new. Very nice. Massive nice new pool. Nice new Disco, fun staff and great night time shows. Beach grill and buffet was good. Specialty resturants were just OK. With both resorts beach is only walkable from end to end of the resort so no long walks on the beach. RIU beach was not rocky. Ocean water seemed better at SSBR though. Rooms nicer at RIU with mini bar and frig. There were kids at RIU but not tons like at SSBR. RIU seemed to have more games and shows for adult entertainment. Both resorts had good drinks but RIU set up specialty bars at night. Like martini bars and margarita bars. For the CLEAREST water Negril is your best bet.

Wilmington, Delaware
posts: 11
5. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

TheVinnie- thanks, I have been to Auba, DR, Bahamas, Mexico and Belize on past vacations. We always go middle of the road all inclusive and have never had a problem or not like a resort. I personally go for the beach and the water, the pools I could care less about. We have in the past stayed in RIU resorts and do like them, Thanks for your input :)

Celtics- I did look at the Iberstar too:)

Wilmington, Delaware
posts: 11
6. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

Marylynn- which resorts do you recommend in Negril?

Apache Junction...
Destination Expert
for Montego Bay
posts: 10,137
reviews: 8
7. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

I wouldn't consider the Hilton as a "Middle of the Road" AI.

Have you looked at any of the the Couples resorts? Check out Couples Swept Away. For a good beach, look at Negril over Montego Bay.

Cedar Rapids, Iowa
posts: 3,097
reviews: 19
8. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

Well I LOVE Couples but it is a big step above RIU. If you can swing it go for it. CSA is on a great location you can walk to lots of places. Although it is pricey you wont spend a dime once you step onto the resort. No tipping aloud, comes with lots of excursions so no need to spend $ on them. Free snorkeling, water sking, glass bottom boat trips, scuba lessons, shopping trips, golfing, lots of extras. If CSA is not in the budget look into RIU Tropical bay. It is on a nice stretch of beach clear water. Maybe check out sunset at the palms. Sounds like if beach is a dealbreaker you need to go to Negril......

Derby, Connecticut
Destination Expert
for Ocho Rios
posts: 4,503
reviews: 41
9. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

I would look at Grand Pineapple resort - Smaller AI, not all the bells and whistles - but affordable and on a great stretch of the beach in Negril. Also try Sunset at the Palms -

Orlando, Florida
Destination Expert
for Jamaica
posts: 4,302
reviews: 24
10. Re: first time in jamaica- need advice on beaches & resorts

The only issue that I would have RUI, Grand Pineapple or Sunset at the Palms is kids!!!!

What I also like about Couples is that you get many more inclusions then the "middle" of the road properties. Scuba, snorkeling, hobie cats, catamaran cruise, etc. Plus great food, drinks and service.