We were there from Nov 25 through Dec 4, My husband, My mother and myself. We had a wonderful time at the resort. Before we went, I had read every single reviews posted on this forum. I knew I might encounter issues that most of the previous customers experienced. Such as,
1. Slow check in
2. Long line at the bars and restaurents
3. Mildewed bathroom
4. Hard time reserving at the sit down restaurants
5. Rude employees and so on.
Well, we found none of these to be true. Not sure if this is because of the time of the year we were there or what. I was expecting it to be bad because we're there during the thanksgiving holidays. But, not the case for us.
We traveled from CA and took the red eye flight. So when we reached in Montego Bay airport on nov 25, we were extremely tired. We reserved Jamaica Tours Limited for our transfer. There was a bit of wait at the air port due to the transfer bus arriving late. But, once we were on the bus, it took us literally 10 minutes to reach the resort, that after having stopped at Riu and few other placed to drop off other passengers on the way. It took us 5 minutes to check in. Once we got our badges, the bell boy showed us to our room.
Initially we were put in building 7. We requested for adjoining room, but that wasn't available. So, we were in the second floor and my mother was in the 3rd floor of building 7. We booked the delux rooms with ocean views, that's what we got. Though my mom was initailly put into a room with the view of the garden, but after pointing out that we booked the deluxe room, they changed hers.
The views of the ocean front room... oh god..spectacular. Just imagine waking up to looking at the ocean. Worth every penny we spend to upgrade. I realized my mother had even a better view of the ocean from the 3rd floor. We also noticed that building 7 is not right on the beach, there is a little bit of garden in between.So, from our second floor room you see a little bit of the garden and the ocean. But if you stayed in building 4,5, or 6 and have the ocean front room, you will have direct view of only the ocean. realizing that, we went to the front desk and asked if they had any rooms available in those buildings and on the 4th floor. We were told that there weren't, but they will make a note of that and to keep checking.
Well, after keep checking for 5 days, were were moved to building 4. room 4456. AMAZING. corner room, full view of the ocean, couldn't ask for any thing better. This made our trip. The rooms were perfectly clean, no mildew, sliding doors opens and closes perfectly. The room was done every day by 10-11 in the morning with fresh towels, extra soaps etc. No cleanliness issue at all. the only problem with the new room was that the AC didn't make the room cold. It was comfortable, but not as cold as I would have liked it to be.
Any ways.. because we joined the priority club, thanks to advices from this site, we were able to reserve to the Italian and the Caribbean restaurant before we even arrived in Jamaica. That also for 3 constitutive days. Felt very lucky.
Now the food. We at at the Italian for 2 days and at the Caribbean one day. We preferred the Italian. Good portion, good food, great service. We didn't experience slow service at all. Seabreeze was ok, not great.
The buffet was ok, plenty options to choose from. My husband is a very picky eater, and he had plenty to eat. There was always a fish, some vegetables, pre made salads and salad bar,cheese & crackers, soup, pasta, pizza, chicken, beef or lamb, 3-4 items for kids at least 4-5 types of desserts. Plenty to pick from. We didn't get bored with it after 9 days.
But, if you didn't like buffet, there was just kiddin which had jerk chicken/pork, hotdogs, nahco cheese (didn't like), popcorn and ice creams.
Or, at the bare foot grill, there was cheese burgers, veggie burgers, fish and chips. My husband loved the fish and chips. But, they closed the bare foot grill in the middle of the week for construction and moved it to the seabreeze, It was a bit of extra walk which was ok.
We don't drink alcohols, but we had the pina colada every single day. It was good. The coke tasted different to me for some reason. But it was a good excuse to not have more sugar.
We used the gym facility almost every single day. It was good enough for us. 3 treadmills, couple of elliptical, 2 stationary bike, 2 spinning bikes, weight machines, free weights, even steps for avid aerobic stepper like me. They even had a small open area next to the gym where I was able to workout using the steppers and my workout dvd. The gym has great view of the ocean and the beach.
The second day we decided that the road looked safe enough for us to drive. So, we rented a car from the on sight hertz car rental. Best decision we could have made. Yes, we had to test drive the car in the near by road to get used to driving on the wrong side of the road, but it wasn't that bad. We rented a GPS which didn't work. After replacing with a second one it didn't work either. So we decided to give it back and follow the map. Which was fine. It wasn't easy, but we stopped and asked people and they were very helpful. Few time, we entered the wrong way, and the pediatricians tapped on our window to point it to us. I know scary, but, we were not on the highways. The highways are fine to drive, except if you are not comfortable, don't try to overtake. Just stay behind slow moving cars. But, if you go to the inside streets that's a different story. The roads were bad, full of pot holes.
Anyways, we drove to negril and went to the ricks cafe. My husband had a great time jumping off of the cliffs with the cliff jumpers. It was great.
Then next day, we decided to take my mom to the Martha Brae Rafting. Worth the $60. Very relaxing. Good for her to sit as she can not do a lot of physical activity.
We read a lot about Dunn's river falls as a must to. But I was a bit skeptical. Being on a human chain, holding hands of strangers to climb a fall didn't appeal to me. But, since we were in Ocho Rios, we decided to give it a try. After reaching there we realized that you don't need to do a guided climb, holding hand of other people. We just did it own our own. Couldn't agree more with people who said it a must do. We climbed the fall 3 times.We would have done it more, but we went late(2:30) and it was getting dark and the park closed at 4:30. But, worth the 15 pp price we paid.
While in Ocho Rios we also visited the furn gulley, it was ok, not great.
Next day we went back t Ocho Rios and did White water Tubing, for $20 pp. The best thing about that, there is a place in the middle of the river where you can stop and swing from a tree. So much fun.
by day 8 we returned our car. So we stayed day 8 and day 9 at the resort. We snorkeled a lot too. We brought our own snorkeling gears. We tried around the pier. But best part to see all the fishes was behind the little island. We also tried the Catamaran sailing once.. great fun.. and they take you quite far in the ocean. We wanted to do the second time, but the weather didn't permit.
We also shopped across the street. Very convenient, since we had returned the car already, we couldn't go far. We bargained and got great deals.
Now, the best part of the resort is the people. I have not experience any rude employee. Every one works hard and smiles all the time. We tipped just because we received great service from everyone. No one asked for it, great service nonetheless. No long lines.. the most I had ever had to wait for food was 5 min at the most. Not sure, if this was because of the time of the year??
Every night, my husband and I walked around the property after dinner to burn some of the great food we had. There was always securing patrolling the property. This made us very safe during our stay. Also at the front entrance, they take your name and room number down when you enter or exit the property. You can take it as a bother or think that they are doing it to ensure your safety. Totally safe resort.
The entertainment was ok. We are not keen about watching shows or participating in games. It was there for people who enjoys them... not us.
Oh, on thing, there were plenty of tv channels. Even two Indian channels, never expected that..
Over all, we had a great time. I don't know why I would want to pay double for staying at a 5 star when Holiday completely meets what I look for in a all inclusive hotel.. clean rooms, plenty of good food, good service, good people, good entertainment. above all good price for all of this.
Will surely return to Jamaica and surely stay at holiday in sunspree
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- *All rates displayed are All-Inclusive* When comparing Jamaica hotels, consider the All-Inclusive Holiday Inn SunSpree Resort Hotel-Montego Bay Jamaica. After an extensive renovation, this favorite Montego Bay hotel looks fantastic! The renewed color theme throughout the hotel will help you kick off your Jamaica vacation. A newly refreshed lobby, enhanced guestrooms with flat screen TV's, restaurants, beach and swimming and sunning areas make this Jamaica hotel better than ever. This Jamaica resort is located approximately 7 minutes from the Montego Bay International Airport. We offer an array of services as well as optional tours. Our wedding coordinator can help you plan your dream Caribbean wedding. Please look at our package page for more information. Conference facilities available. Children activity centre from 6 months to 12 years. The All- Inclusive Caribbean vacation includes room, non-motorized water sports, three delicious meals and snacks - buffet or a la carte. Please note: Some restaurants are not open every day and require reservations. See food and beverage section for schedules. Local brand cocktails and soft drinks. *Must advise arrival flight in info field when making reservations. Taxes and service charges included. Our property offers a courtesy lounge with luggage storage area and shower facilities. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Sunspree Jamaica
- Montego Bay Holiday Inn
- Holiday Inn Jamaica
- Holiday Inn Rose Hall
- Rose Hall Holiday Inn
- Holiday Inn Sunspree Montego Bay Jamaica
- Holiday Inn Montego Bay Jamaica
- Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort Jamaica