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“Beautiful Resort, Wonderful Staff, Fabulous Honeymoon.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort

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Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Ocho Rios, Jamaica   |  
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Ranked #7 of 40 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Beautiful Resort, Wonderful Staff, Fabulous Honeymoon.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for a week at the beginning of October as we celebrated our honeymoon. Here’s the rundown:

The Room
We stayed in Room 7427, a Bougainvillea Hideaway with butler service. The room itself was really nice, with a separate seating area, a small bar area with the refrigerator and coffee maker, a nice-sized bathroom, and a patio with a table and chairs. There was a pool that was shared with others in the villa (there were four rooms in the villa). The bed was very comfortable. My only complaint is that our room was located right next to a building used by the housekeeping staff, and that got a bit loud. Our bathroom window, which did not shut (there was no glass – just wooden shutters), let in a lot of noise when there were staff using that building. We could hear them stacking/clearing dishes at night and talking early in the morning. It seemed to become more of an annoyance throughout the week, but by that time it wasn’t really worthwhile to complain. We certainly didn’t let it ruin our fabulous honeymoon!

The Food
We tried most of the restaurants on the resort. Our favorites were Neptune’s (try the salmon) and Valentino’s. We enjoyed Kimonos, but more for the experience than the food. At Kelly’s Dockside, the view overshadowed the food, which was good but nothing you couldn’t get by visiting a steakhouse back home. Soy was okay but not the best sushi we’ve had. China Doll was our favorite breakfast spot. Overall, we thought the food was great. Also, Jamie’s Sports Bar was a blast!

The Resort
We really enjoyed this resort because you had the option to spend each day relaxing or take advantage of the many activities each day if you wanted to be more active and adventurous. We did go off the resort once to visit Dunn’s River Falls, but aside from that, we felt there was plenty to do right at Sandals.

We especially enjoyed the watersports that were available. We enjoyed two snorkeling trips and also went out in the sailboats (I think they are called hobeys?) twice. My husband also tried paddle-boarding.

The evening entertainment was impressive, and we tried to make it to each night’s show or event. We especially liked the reggae band. The Playmakers staff did a fantastic job of engaging people in the activities – we participated in several different events at the Manor pool throughout the week, which was a lot of fun.

The resort itself was beautiful and well-maintained – great views of the ocean and lots of little spots to kick back and spend a few quiet moments taking it all in. We loved the Sundowner Bar and the lounge chairs with their own outdoor fireplaces. It was simply a beautiful place.

The Staff
There were so many people that made our stay really wonderful – the Jamaican people certainly know how to accommodate and entertain! We especially enjoyed our two butlers, Glen and Christine. They went above and beyond to make sure we wouldn’t forget our week at Sandals. The best part was the evening when they surprised us with a bubble bath, champagne and treats, and a trail of petals through our room. Glen and Christine were both polite, efficient, friendly and uber-professional.

Others who made our stay memorable include Richard and Jemar at the watersports area, Gwendolyn at the Red Lane Spa, Glenroy at Valentino’s, Steve at Kimonos, Romain at Kelly’s Dockside, and Playmakers Raquel and Joel. Vishal, the Manor Side manager, introduced himself to us as we checked in and also called later in our stay to ensure we were enjoying ourselves.

Red Lane Spa
We visited the Red Lane Spa twice during our stay. The first time, we had a couples massage, which was absolutely wonderful. I would put it in the top five massages I’ve ever had. The second time we visited the spa, I did the bamboo scrub while my husband got a facial and a men’s pedicure. All of the services were very well done, and we enjoyed the other spa amenities that were available like the steam room and plunge pool. I would advise other Sandals guests to take advantage of the spa discounts – they have specials each day and the services can be quite expensive if you have to pay full price. If you visit during this time of year, you should be able to get an appointment even if you don’t book them until you’re already at Sandals.

The Time of Year
We were fortunate to have great weather for most of the week. It was overcast the day we arrived and the following day, but we enjoyed sunshine and warm temps (upper 80s) for the rest of the week. I would highly recommend coming during this time of year. The resort was not crowded at all, so it wasn’t hard to get dinner reservations or find a lounge chair by the pool. There were enough people around, though, that it didn’t feel like a ghost town or anything. Overall, I think it was perfect timing for our vacation.

Thank you so much, Sandals, for a honeymoon that we will never forget! We can’t wait to go back!

Room Tip: As I mentioned above, our room was right next to the housekeeping building. If you are placed in a r...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Sandals & Beaches Review Coordinator at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
Wow! What a wonderful honeymoon you had at Sandals Grande Riviera! We're more than pleased to hear your great review of your time spent with us. We're so glad that we were able to make your stay so special and one that you will certainly never forget. Thank you for your review. We look forward to your return in the near future!
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5,302 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 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 (1,537)
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English first
Pembroke Pines
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

We scheduled this vacation because my daughter and her husband were there in Grand Riviera in August and they couldn't stop talking about how great a time they had. They came short in their praises. My husband and I decided to take the trip although we are partial to cruises. My daughter suggested that we asked for the same butler Richard and Jeremy. Everything my daughter said was true plus more, from the food to the service, to the accommodations and the exceptional butlers it was all exceptional. This is a place we would visit again without hesitation, we highly recommend it and we are looking forward to our next visit. Richard and Jeremy went out of their way to please us in every way they could.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Cassie C, Sandals & Beaches Review Coordinator at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
Richard and Jeremy are two of our best butlers and I'm so thrilled to read that your experience with them was nothing short of the norm. We strive to offer stellar experiences to our guests and it seemed they made sure your birthday trip was an amazing one. Thank you for your review. We look forward to seeing you back in the future!
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Princeton, New Jersey
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

Simply put, we were treated like royalty at Sandals Grand Riviera! The Concierge Manager Jason and his team went out of their way to make sure everything was GREAT. When my friends luggage was accidentally sent to the wrong resort, Jason solved the impossible problem and got the luggage to the resort with in a few hours, even though it was on the other side of the island. That was just the start of the great service.

Everyone greeted us with a smile. There were many staffers that we got to know but I have to say that Jason (Concierge Manager), Sasha (Entertainment Manager), Nattalie & Dwayne (Playmaker Team) and Brandon (waiter in multiple restaurants) are absolutely awesome. For us, even more important than the 'service' they provide, these folks are just good people. Friendly, personable, interesting, funny and great to spend time with. I would take Jason on my team 6 days a week and twice on Sunday!

I'm happy to answer any questions for folks headed to this resort. Let me know.

Ben & Angie (7 day trip in Oct. 2013)

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Cassie C, Sandals & Beaches Review Coordinator at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
Thanks so much for your review! You had such an awesome vacation with us at Sandals Grande Riviera and we're thrilled to hear it. Thanks to our eager and friendly staff, your stay seemed to be an experience you will never forget. We look forward to welcoming you back soon for an even better stay in the future!
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Falkirk, Scotland
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013 via mobile

Travelled to SGR on 14th October and stayed for 11 glorious days.
We travelled BA business class which was fabulous but arrived at Kingston rush hour and had to endure exactly 2.5hours on the mini bus to the resort. Once there everything was perfect. Beautiful resort, accommodation, weather, food and most of all wonderful people. We were well looked after by our Butlers, GayAnn and Oren who were lovely and had wonderful service from Annmarie, Janine and Shawn down at the Ocho beach club. Entertainment in the evenings was good, loved the beach party and the chocolate buffet! Journey back to kingston was two hours but there is a new toll road being built which should cut the journey to 45 mins. The kingston club at the airport is included in the business class ticket so no need to purchase this at hotel.
We had a great holiday and would return in a heartbeat.

Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Sandals & Beaches Review Coordinator at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
Thank you for your review of Sandals Grande Riviera. We're so glad to hear that you had a great trip. We always strive to offer amazing vacations to our guests and your feedback shows that we did just that during your stay. I will be sure to share your review with our staff. They will be so proud to hear of your kind mention.

We hope to welcome you back soon!
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home
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

my husband and I have just celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary and my husbands 60th birthday at sandals grande and I must say it was one of our best holidays thanks to the great people we met and the staff who went out of their way to help us have a great time.I would like to start my review by saying thankyou to Anna,Steshaun,Janel, Chaz, Andre and Ann-Marie down at the beach club they were all amazing, Then Martin and Monice at the polo bar, Andre at the reef terrace, and last but not least our two buttlers Glen and Chritine who took excellent care of us through our stay. We stayed at the manor side of the resort in a buttler villa which was allways kept clean and tidy, as were the grounds. We ate at most of the resturants through our stay, although our favourites were the reef terrace, valiantinos and the manor, you must try the coconut shrimp down at neptunes for lunch its beautiful. The worst part of our trip was the airport transfer three hours on a mini bus in rush hour traffic on them narrow roads was horribal I was ill when we arrived at the resort but we had been on traveling 24 hours but it didn't ruin our stay.Were hoping to return next year, by the way the weather was fantastic.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Sandals & Beaches Review Coordinator at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
Thank you so much for your review of Sandals Grande Riviera. We're delighted to read that you had such an awesome anniversary as well as milestone birthday celebration at our resort. I'm so happy that we succeeded in creating that luxury romantic experience for you and your husband.

We look forward to your return for an even better stay next year!
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Newmarket, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2013

I read a lot of reviews before I went on vacation to Sandals Grande Riviera and no one really explained exactly how big this resort was. There are two sides to the resort, the ocean side and the riviera side, which are divided by a main road and a bus that takes you back and forth. Since the villa rooms are butler suites they have golf carts that take you to and from the main lobby which is where you catch the bus to the beach side but there is a lot of time spent on a golf cart, jitney or bus to get yourself from the room/beach/pools/restaurants. That being said, if you don't mind the large resort, this one was amazing!

We stayed on the riviera side in a Butler Village Honeymoon Poolside One Bedroom Villa Suite since we much prefer quiet villas to a hotel. The villas are gorgeous and each have a private pool that is shared with the other rooms in your villa which is nice. The rooms are built up on a hill so if you have one on the second floor the view is amazing! You can see the ocean and mountains.

The service was amazing which I have come to realize is very much part of the Sandals brand. Everyone there is so helpful and friendly. Our butlers were awesome and actually called us just to check in since we didn't call them very often. I don't think that you really need butler service at this resort (it just came with our room category). The things that we really loved about having a butler at Sandals Negril were not as useful here since the resort was so huge once you were on the beach side, you didn't see your butler until you went back to the pool side. If you are thinking about booking here, I wouldn't spend extra money to get a butler.

The food was awesome, I love that there are so many places to get food. We never ate at the same place twice for dinner. Some of my favourites were Kellys Dockside, The Reef and Kimono's.

The beach was the only thing that I thought was a bit disappointing. There is a pier right in the middle of the beach which restricts your view if you sit in the middle of it but that is where the beach is the best. We sat at the Ochi Beach Club everyday because it had the best view and was a bit more quiet but the beach there has rocks for the first few feet that really hurt to get over but once your past them its sandy and beautiful!! If you get there early enough you can get a bed at the beach club which is really comfy.

The grounds are extremely lush and well kept. Every where you turn there is a new nook and cranny that is so lush and has a pool and a place to sit. I think that there are more pools here than any other resort anywhere!! There are also a lot of activities going on all the time. We signed up for the glass bottom boat tour with the snorkeling and you can go see a sunken ship which was $25US per person (that same excursion was free in Negril) but it was neat to see the ship wreck!

This is our second trip to Sandals and we absolutely love them! Can't wait to go back!

Room Tip: If you select a villa room you are very far away from the beach. If you are "beach people"...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Cassie C, Sandals & Beaches Review Coordinator at Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, responded to this review, October 29, 2013
We're so happy to read about your fantastic stay at Sandals Grande Riviera. It's always so encouraging to know about the great experiences our guests have on resort. I'm glad that you enjoyed our beautiful property, our fine dining, luxurious accommodations and the genuine hospitality of our staff.

Thank you so much for your review! We can't wait to welcome you back in the future!
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1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2013 via mobile

My wife and I had the best experience ever from day one Charlette our butler was pleasant informative and of great assistance. And just when we thought it couldn't get better we met Akeem and the service went even higher. From the Bell Desk crew of the Great House...to the Polo Club and Pool Bar it was all nothing short of heaven. Our wedding ceremony felt like we were the only one's ever in such a oasis. The entertainment and smiling faces on the entire resort make it a grande destination I desire to return to ASAP...if you ain't been you don't know what your missing

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort

Address: Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#7 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#7 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 529
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•Situated on over 100 acres of lush hillside gardens overlooking the Caribbean Sea•529 villas, luxury rooms and suites with fantastic mountain and ocean views•94 pools (7 large public pools), 22 whirlpools•16 dining options including room service for butler serviced suites•2 luxurious Red Lane Spas•Complimentary golf at Jamaica’s most elite and popular golf course, the Sandals Golf & Country Club (Transfers to the golf course are included)•Over 5,000 sq. feet of first class meeting and conference facilities•Recently completed US$60 million renovation/refurbishing exercise•Voted Sandals Resorts “World’s Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand”, 18 years in a row•Voted Sandals Grande Riviera ‘Jamaica’s Leading Resort’ ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Hotel Ocho Rios
Sandals Grande Riviera Beach And Villa Golf Resort
Sandals Ocho Rios
Ciboney Ocho Rios
Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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