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“Riu never disappoints!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riu Montego Bay

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Hotel Riu Montego Bay
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Mahoe Bay - Ironshore P.O | Montego Bay, Montego Bay, Jamaica   |  
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Ranked #25 of 63 Hotels in Montego Bay
north carolina
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Riu never disappoints!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2009

We were a little worried about staying a the Riu MBJ after some of the negative reviews. We had stayed in Riu Ocho Rios and knew how good that was and had faith that this would be good too. It was GREAT! So nice to get off the plane and be at your resort right away. Check in was quick and flawless, a cold drink in hand we made our reservations for each of the restaurants and headed up to the room. Spend the extra and get the suite. YOU WILL NOT BE DISAPPPOINTED. We used the hot tub in the room every night and it is plenty big for two with room to spare. Our balcony was the size of two and the ocean was right there. Sunsets are beautiful in M. Bay. A/C was plenty cold and the drinks were plentiful. We enjoyed the beach and the pool and went on the snorkeling trip. A very full 2 hours! No snorkeling right off the beach like in Ocho Rios but the trip made up for it. Planes are no big deal either, I saw some bad reviews about that and it had me worried. It's like 5 seconds and they are gone. Staff is so nice from the ladies cleaning your rooms to the bartenders and waiters and the ladies in the spa. We had a great trip, drank too much, ate too much and in general just had so much fun. Met a lot of nice people but had plenty of just us time too. I hope to go to another Riu next year.

Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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DC
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2009

So I'm a little late in writing my review, but I had to write one since I relied on so many of them to make my decision and plan my trip to Montego Bay. We (my girlfriend and I) stay at the Riu Montego Bay from Sept 17th to the 21st. We had an awesome time! The hotel it self is amazing, from the minute I walked into the reception area I was happy. Our rooms were ready to go and service was fast. Though we didn't get any drinks served to us at arrival as many others have mentioned. But its OK they hotel made up for it. The landscape, layout, design is very well planned out. We LOVED the pool, swim up bar, beaches, jerk chicken shack (I did at least) , spa, sauna, hot tub, restaurants, food, everything. They also have tons of games and recreational things available for you to do, thought when they were open or not was somewhat unclear to me. We enjoyed playing ping pong pool side and took out a paddle boat for some time as well.
Our room was very clean and taken care of nicely by the maids. They refilled up everything and kept the red strip stocked. I def. recommend getting the all inclusive deal if you go. You never have to worry about carrying anything around with you besides your room key and a beach towel. Make your reservations for the restaurants as soon as you arrive and they are only done (8am to 4pm). We took one excursion to Dunns Rivers Falls which was soo much fun. We went through Viatour (sp?) and were very pleased. Its a great experience. Takes about 1.5 hours to get there.
One thing important to note is that I believe going in Mid to late September helped make our experience a lot more enjoyable because it is at the very end of the busy season and at this point vendors, markets, tour places, anywhere are just looking to make whatever they can at this point. So you can easily bargain for anything and everything!
The entertainment was somewhat enjoyable, they did a good job of putting together the shows, but I enjoyed the last night which was the MJ tribute. Clearly the best show they have. Also another plus to staying here is that the shuttle back and forth to Margaritaville stops by our hotel each day. So you don't even have to pay to go and come back from there. We partied there one night and had a blast.

For the most part we just relaxed and stayed at the Riu the entire time. We had lots of fun just hanging out and relaxing and just spending time doing nothing!!!! I would def go back and am going to use the RIU at other locations as well. I'm hooked to RIU.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EAST YORKSHIRE
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2009

Hi we have just returned from the rmb hotel what can i say but brilliant all staff gave 100% every day the entertainment team was second to none amazing good food and drink so if you are thinking of booking this hotel and you have read all those bad reviews they are rubbish you make your own holiday and maybe dont realize how privileged we are to be able to see these amazing places and yes like millions out there me and my husband work hard and save to go so thank you riu montego bay hotel and jamaica for our 2 week dream holiday brian and margaret england hi to ebony and all the ent team

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2009

We travelled to Jamaica in mid September on a family holiday, having always stayed with family on previous trips to the Island. Firstly, I should say that I was slightly apprehensive having read some of the negative comments posted on this site, but immediately on entering the hotel location we were met with extreme courtesy from all we met.

I had pre ordered a disabled access room for my mother who is mobile, but at 80 required a shower rather than bath which would have been less easy to negotiate. Knowing that there were only a small number of such rooms available, I was immediately relieved to find out that the request had been met, and after a complimentary welcome drink, our luggage was taken to our rooms by a helpful staff member.

The rooms were very spacious, and the only complaint I could make, is that possibly coming from England, rather than USA, we found the air conditioning a little cooler than we would have wished in both rooms, although this was immediately remedied via the easy to use controls. Otherwise, save for minor noise from other guests in the common parts of our walkway, our rooms provided as much or maybe more than we could have expected, with a well stocked mini-bar, good pressure showers (with seating in my mothers room) and with unlimited hot water, something which I had not always had staying in domestic residents in Jamaica previously.

Furthermore, room service was ever present during the daytime hours and we always came back to rooms which were cleaned and freshly supplied with towels etc.

Mealtimes were a feast, those complaining about them are possibly those who may not have travelled extensively, and are only secure within their own comfort zones, e.g. doughnuts could be had at breakfast.......... We found the variety of foods on offer was never less than overwhelming, especially at breakfast when it would amuse us to see the small counter of local dishes stared at with bewilderment and then hurriedly backed away from, again, seemingly by those people who appeared to only want to stick with what they had at home but in a warmer environment.

We tried all of the restaurants during our seven-day stay and were rarely if ever lacking in something new to try and meals were generally of a very good standard for an establishment of this type.

Our aim in staying at a hotel was to have a base from which we could see more of the island, as one of our party of three and never been there before. In this respect again we were lucky to have relatives who arranged the trips which we made out of the hotel to: Negril; Black River (where I did touch a touch a 'crocodile',) and Kingston. In this respect, and I assume the same will be true for the majority of tourists to the Island, is that prices for transportation is way over the top. The trip to the airport was charged in the region of US$20, whereas a cab used by a local would probably be more in the region of US$3, c'est la vie. Notwithstanding this disparity in all travel charges, do please take the opportunity to explore the island it is truly wonderful; therefore you probably are wisest to strike a deal with the service on offer at the hotel, unless you are a very experienced traveller, please remember to take extra care if venturing out on your own, and in particular let others know where you are going and with whom.

My only other observations are more superficial insofar as we made the most of our short time in Jamaica to see as much as possible, which is a course of action I have already recommended, therefore we did not get to use the expansive pool or even get onto the hotel beach, which from our vantage point in the steak grill looked clean and lovely, as we sipped our drinks or tucked into our tender rib-eye steaks.

Other plus points are the free wifi, though only accessible in the large reception area, with the warning that if like me you are using your domestic sim, then don't, unless you don't mind a massive bill consisting of roaming charges when you get home - its easy enough to buy a local sim in the mall across the road.

I can say for the time we actually stayed in the hotel we had an absolutely fantastic time and all of us were very sorry to leave, especially my mother who was always respectfully addressed as 'mum' to all the lovely staff who we came into contact with. Even the $100 late check-out charge for the additional four-hours we required which would enable my mother to use her room shower rather than the communal one on offer by reception, didn't spoil our final day too much (that is rather steep though!), although its the only time when we could say service was not upto what we had come to expect during the rest of our stay,

A definite thumbs up and we can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2009

I was nervous about staying at the Riu Montego Bay after reading some of the reviews but my best advice now: DON'T LISTEN TO THEM! We stayed at the Riu for 4 nights and I have no complaints about it.

We got there and immediately were offered a drink upon check-in. We arrived at about 2:00 and our room was ready. They went over all of the amenities and hours of all restaurants with us. Make sure you get your towel card upon check-in. We didn't receive one and had to go back up when we realized you needed one to obtain a towel at the pool. Yes, it is warm in the lobby area during the day. They have fans but it is an open air lobby. I don't know about you but I would much rather the open outdoors feel than sectioned off. You're in Jamaica, you asked for the heat!

The room was very nice. The AC worked very well and did not smell all musty like many reviews claimed. It did smell a bit of smoke but we didn't mind since we are smokers ourselves. Hint: if you smoke, buy them before you leave home; the gift shop charged $11 a pack! The bed was kinda strange since it was two full beds pushed together. They moved quite easily so it was either sleep separately or pretty close in one. Not a huge deal to me though...I was on vacation with my boyfriend so I would hope we would be sleeping close! The bar was fully stocked with red stripe, sodas, water, etc. There were also 4 different liquor dispensers which was great. Water pressure in the shower was great, double sink. The maid service was great. They really did a good and thorough job. We were on the 3rd floor so bugs weren't really an issue. Although, we did leave a soda bottle out on the balcony one night and there were ants all over it in the morning so be aware what you leave out.

The pool bar was the place we spent most of our time. Wished the water in the pool was a bit cooler but it didn't matter too much. You kind of expect it when the weather is as warm as it is there. The bartenders were great. They had a drink menu but we started just asking them to make their specialty which resulted in some very good drinks! The beach was good but we weren't there to just lay out which is pretty much all you could do on the beach (unless you rented the kayaks or paddleboats). We were also sure to be near the bar and there is not one on the beach.

The food was pretty good for the most part. Some of the stuff I wouldn't eat b/c I didn't know what it was, haha, but I was impressed at the selection considering how many people they had to feed. For lunch, I say forget the buffet and head to the jerk chicken hut on the beach! It was sooo good. Breakfast was great. I got an omelet every morning which was really good. They had pretty much everything including fresh made smoothies. We ate at all 3 restaurants while we were there (we booked them right after we checked in and it seems we got some of the last spots so be sure to do that right when you get there). They all were excellent in my opinion. A lot of people say they don't like the Asian restaurant but I thought it was good. All three I was impressed with. The italian restaurant also stays open late and makes pizzas to order (which we took advantage of after a long night at the disco). The pizza is kinda weird...I think they use ketchup instead of the sauce we are used to but it wasn't too bad.

The entertainment was great. They did a Grease musical one night, a few funny skits another night, danced to a bunch of different styles of music another, and had a beach party with fire dancing/eating/blowing. It all was very impressive considering how hard the staff works all day too. They came out to the pool every afternoon and did various contests and dances. They really did a good job and were super friendly.

We stayed on the resort most of the time. One night they gave us free admission and a free shuttle to Margaritaville so we went there one night. It was like a dance club and we had a great time. We took a catamaran another day to Margaritaville so we could go on the slide and jump on the water trampolines which was a lot of fun. It was a snorkel/Margaritaville trip but we just wanted to go to Margaritaville so the staff on the boat dropped us off first which was really nice of them. One of the staff also came with us to the gift shop and let us use his discount for our stuff. The boat ride was 35/person which was well worth it considering a shuttle to the restuarant is 20 each way and the cover would have been 10/person. The disco at the resort was okay. We were with another couple so we had a good time but not many people were out there dancing. Granted, it wasn't a busy season when we went so maybe that was why. Either way, we had a good time!

Hope this helps anyone who is considering going to the Riu. I really enjoyed myself as did everyone I went with. I have no complaints and wouldn't hesistate going back. If you go there looking to relax and have a good time, then this is the place to go.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fresh Meadows
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2009

The Riu is a very beautiful resort with an accommodating and friendly staff! The food was very good quality for buffet style service. The evening entertainment was fun and the performers were talented. The rooms were spacious and well appointed. We were there for a wedding which was on the beach - very beautiful and lots of fun!

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
brazil
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2009

just returned from holiday in montego bay staying at the riu hotel , to cut it short , very clean hotel rooms cleaned everyday ,food excellant very good selection the little itatly was very good and excellant service. entainterment staff very good something new every night, location not so good it was like stepping out on the m1 outside the hotel , had to get a taxi to go into montego bay. not much off a beach to walk on if you like to walk.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riu Montego Bay

Address: Mahoe Bay - Ironshore P.O | Montego Bay, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint James Parish > Montego Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#13 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
#19 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#20 On the Beach Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Riu Montego Bay 3.5*
Number of rooms: 681
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
* Opening September 2008 * Located in Montego Bay, on Jamaica's northwest coast * On the beachfront * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 2-story main building and 3-story and 4-story annexes * Surrounded by 40,000 m2 / 47,840 sq. yards of lush gardens * 4.5 km / 2.8 miles from Montego Bay * 350 m / 114.8 ft from various shops * 2,7 km / 1.7 miles from Montego Bay airport * Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Montego Bay Resort
Riu Hotel Montego Bay

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