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“Hospitality par excellence” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Half Moon, A RockResort

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Half Moon, A RockResort
4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Rose Hall, Montego Bay, Jamaica   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Half Moon Summer Getaway
Ranked #3 of 63 Hotels in Montego Bay
Certificate of Excellence 2014
New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Hospitality par excellence”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2009

My husband and I hadn't been able to make up our minds about where to stay in Montego Bay - we had made reservations at Half Moon and also the Hilton, which was cheaper. But I had seen reviews about Hilton that it was way too crowded and the staff wasn't friendly. On the other side I was worried that Half Moon would be way too expensive and being a vegetarian, I wouldn't get enough dining options. When we landed at the airport, we decided to check out the Half Moon arrival lounge and maybe even see the resort before making our decision. Guess what - they already had a shuttle waiting for us. And once we rolled into the resort itself, we were hooked. We ended up getting the all inclusive Good Life package because it was a much better value than only paying for room - all food & drinks at their 3 restaurants, room service, a complimentary couples massage, beach-side dining/beverage service, free bike rentals, free non motorized water sports, fitness club. At $140 per person for the all inclusive plan, it was a steal.

Beyond just the cost savings though, we were very impressed with the rooms, the plenty of open, private beach space and above all, the impeccable service. The staff went above and beyond what might be expected to ensure that we relaxed and had a good time. If we were walking anywhere, they'd stop their shuttles and golf carts to see if we needed a ride and often went out of their way to drop us off somewhere. The resort is vast so we used our bikes everywhere. And the food was excellent - the chefs prepared special vegetarian dishes for me - the best restaurant by far is the Sugar Mill but the Seagrape where you take breakfast and lunch is also good. When one of the servers (Dudley) heard that we wanted to try Jamaica's famous Blue Mountain coffee, he went and brewed us a pot himself. The biggest relief was that you don't have to tip for any service so we didn't have to walk around carrying money. And you didn’t have to worry about spending – we made full use of their bars, probably more than we should have but that’s what vacations are for  We did end up doing a lot of tipping on our last day because we felt that the staff had earned it.

In terms of activities, we tried mini-golf, used the fitness center and also tried kayaking and hobie sailing – very fun! The hobie sailing wasn’t included in our package but was worth every penny. I also have to give high marks to the Fern Tree spa where we got massages – awesome! Our masseuses were fantastic – no slacking, no breaks, perfectly relaxing massages.

The only downside is that this is a quiet resort – people come here mostly to relax and everything closes by 6 or 7 (shops, water sports, pools) so there’s not much to do in the evening after dinner. They do sometimes have a band playing in the evening and it was fun to listen to them while sitting at a bar. But after 5-6 days, you’ll start feeling antsy. Of course, you can go out to downtown Montego Bay but we didn’t want to try it. And the resort too feels slightly deserted in the evenings once people go back to their villas.

We talked to a few people who had gone to check out the Ritz Carlton next door and they reported that it didn’t even come close to Half Moon. All in all, one of the best vacations we have ever had. And I have to give full credit to the high standards of hospitality and service displayed by all Half Moon staff. The resort is over 40-50 years old and has hosted royalty as well as guests like Jacqueline Kennedy (there’s a fun fact that links her to the resort – Google it). I didn’t want to leave and am looking forward to going there again next year. It's the best in luxury stay in Jamaica!

  • Stayed July 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
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1,409 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (437)
Date | Rating
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English first
Atlanta, GA USA
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2009

Our family of sixteen (children, grandchildren) celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary at a seven bedroom Royal Villa. The variety of high quality activities was astounding--the Spa, the golf, tennis, water sports, horseback, etc. more than satisfied everyone in our age diverse (7 to 75) group. The staff of the villa and of the hotel were wonderful. Everyone was friendly and cooperative and our butler, Peter, and cook, Karen, were great. The extensive grounds and villa exteriors are magnificently maintained and the beach is everyone's dream of a Caribbean paradise. A few negatives--the interior of the villa is a little tired. Un-airconditioned main room (bedrooms have ac) should have a large ceiling fan. Furniture and draperies need updating badly. Food in pricey restaurants was only ok and service, while always friendly, was somewhat confused. One other quibble--this is a high quality, high-priced luxury resort yet, despite our repeatedly telling them that we were celebrating our 50th anniversary and had been at Half Moon on our honeymoon, we were not offered even a small gesture of recognition. We were not looking for gifts but flowers or a bottle of wine would have reflected a classy attitude whose absence seemed out of keeping with this quality of resort. These are minor negatives and all in all the experience was spectacular.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Big Horn, Wyoming
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 11, 2009

Amazing, mind-blowing & beautiful! Treated like a star & got an excellent deal. Oceanfront suite at 1/4 of the normal rate! Best place I've ever been and I've been ALL OVER Jamaica, including "the castle."

  • Stayed January 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver B.C.
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2009

Highly recommend this place if you are looking for total relaxation.The spa was fantastic.Grounds are beautiful,bartenders were very social & fun.The only thing that I would suggest or i think needs improvement is the food. Not enough authentic Jamaican dishes were offered and should be offered/ available to those who want to experience real Jamaican food versus the Americanized version or softer version.Can't wait to return, hopefully I will be able to get Jamaican food this time.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled solo
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Old Bridge, New Jersey
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2009

My husband and I visited the Half Moon for a friend's wedding during the Memorial Day Weekend and also as a 15th Anniversary present to ourselves. We left our kids back home with my parents and took a few days to enjoy ourselves and witness a beautiful moment in our friend's lives. It's such a magical place. We stayed at one of the 6 bedroom villas along with other guests of the wedding. We had golf carts to see us through the resort and I must say the main bar has the best Pina Coladas I've ever had. Be sure to bring some Rum back home with you. Thanks for a wonderful experience Half Moon. We will see you again. Everything was Irie!!! Always - No Problem! Jamaica is beautiful!!!!

  • Stayed May 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ireland
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2009

My husband and I stayed at Half Moon to attend a wedding there; combined with my birthday celebration. The resort is huge - over 400 acres and you need golf carts to get to and from places within the resort (or you can rent a bike for $5 a day). Immediately upon our arrival, we were warmly greeted by the staff and were given complimentary rum punches. We were then driven to our Villa via golf cart. Again, we were greeted with a warm welcome from the staff in our villa. Anthony, the butler, Ruth, the cook, and Andriene, the maid. Our first experience at a villa (with a private pool) and to get this kind of service was beyond our expectations! Anthony gave us the run down of the villa: Ruth can make breakfast, lunch, and dinner; Andriene will do our laundry and iron our clothes; Anthony is at everyone's beck and call and serves us breakfast and lunch.

After we settled in, Anthony took us to the commissary where we bought eggs, bread, milk, coffee, cheese, potatoes, and fruits, etc. Ruth cooked breakfast and lunch for us throughout our entire stay. This was more cost effective than eating at the main hotel.

There are 3 restaurants in Half Moon and to our mistake, we chose the Italian restaurant on our first night there. The food wasn't that great and it was expensive. Lesson learned: don't eat other cuisines in Jamaica! On our second night, Ruth made us an authentic Jamaican dinner -- ox tail, jerk chicken, rice & beans, and sweet plantains. She even baked a happy birthday cake for me! (Again, this was cost effective as we would have paid much more at the restaurants in the resort). Anthony even lit up candles around the pool to make the evening more special and romantic. My birthday celebration with my husband was one of the most romantic nights we've had in a long while.

Overall, our stay at the villa was fantastic as we shared it with 4 other couples with whom my husband works with (5 rooms in total). Our only minor complaint was that they didn't net the pools very well as throughout the day, you would find more and more insects in our pool. We had fun driving throughout the property in the golf carts, I enjoyed the dolphin swim (an amazing experience!) and my husband thought the spa treatments were amazing. We would totally go back and this time, with our close friends and family AND we would stay for at least 5 nights...not 4!

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Brighton
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2009

We were a party of 5 adults and 5 children and simply could not have wished for a better holiday

Everything was catered for and the staff were incredibly friendly

From superb beaches ( quiet and tropical) - stunning facilities ( golf / horse riding / water sports / tennis / pools) - as well as sensational choices of food and drink - this was a truly idylic holiday destination.

We stayed " all inclusive" and were very glad that we did , as the off plan prices can be extraordinarily high - however- being all inc this didnt matter to us and we enjoyed every minute of the holiday.

We hired gold carts to get around the 400 acre site ( although not necessary - as the concierge service is 1st rate) and had wonderful,accomodation ( hibiscus suite) - right on the beach.

I would highly recommend this resort for families or couples

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Half Moon, A RockResort

Address: Rose Hall, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Phone Number:
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 Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Montego Bay
#3 Business Hotel in Montego Bay
#3 Luxury Hotel in Montego Bay
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#5 Family Hotel in Montego Bay
#7 Romantic Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Half Moon, A RockResort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 388
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on a two-mile, crescent-shaped beach on Jamaica's northern coast, Half Moon, A RockResort, is truly paradise found. This spectacular, 400-acre luxury resort features pristine, whitewashed cottages surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens and the sparkling Caribbean Sea beyond.Expertly combining Old World charm and elegant modern touches, Half Moon offers 197 guest rooms and suites, and 31 private four- to seven-bedroom villas. Its world-class amenities include the renowned Fern Tree Spa, an 18-hole signature golf course, a Dolphin Lagoon, fitness centre, equestrian centre and more. With its spectacular seaside location, rich Caribbean heritage, warm and attentive staff and exceptional array of amenities, it's no wonder that this iconic Jamaican destination has set the standard for luxury Caribbean resorts for 60 years. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Half Moon, a Rock Hotel Montego Bay
Half Moon Jamaica
Half Moon Resort Jamaica
Half Moon Bay Jamaica

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