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“Awesome Vacation!!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Couples Tower Isle

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Couples Tower Isle
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   St. Mary, Ocho Rios, Jamaica (Formerly Couples Ocho Rio)   |  
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Ranked #5 of 40 Hotels in Ocho Rios
West Des Moines, Iowa
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Awesome Vacation!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2013

We returned last weekend from a wonderful 7 day vacation at Couples Tower Isle. All of my concerns and worries that arose from reading through the reviews here on TripAdvisor were easily put aside and forgotten. It was definitely one of the best vacations I've had. I would highly recommend CTI to anyone looking for a vacation in Jamaica!
There are so many positive reviews below I won’t hash over again the same topics. But I will address some of the negative reviews below with my thoughts. Yes, the property is older. It is not the Ritz and you will see some wear and tear. The room did have a slight musty smell which you quickly get used to. But everything was very clean and well cared for. The maids did a great job of cleaning the room inside and out. The pools, whirlpools and grounds were also well cared for and everything looked great. Speaking of the whirlpools, we were able to use the whirlpools by the spa at night once the spa closed. These are a little more secluded and were a little nicer than the other hot tubs.
We had no issues making reservations right off the bat for both Bayside and Eight Rivers. The guest desk had had us fill out a dinning request form right after we checked in and we received both of our requests. I also went back a couple days later and asked for an additional night at Bayside which we received. I’m sure we could have eaten at those two restaurants more, but I wanted others to have the opportunity as well. Some people will book up each of their nights in one of these two restaurants and I don’t feel that’s fair for everyone. We ate two nights at The Verandah, which did not require reservations, and totally enjoyed the service and meals. Our other two nights were at the buffet when all the restaurants were closed. I’m not a buffet person, but the meals were outstanding there as well. Overall the food was fantastic.
We easily were able to book the catamaran, water skiing, glass bottom boat, scuba etc… Once again, not sure how some of the others in the reviews below weren't able to, as the property was sold out when we were there, but never crowded. I’m sure the key is just scheduling your week upfront with the things you want to do and you should be able to. If you wait till the last minute then you may be out of luck. We did arrive late on a Saturday afternoon, which I would guess is the most popular day for arrivals. I could see if someone was coming in on Sunday that they may not get there choices of restaurants or activities the first few days. I would think coming in on a Friday may be the best day to arrive.
On a side note, as I mentioned above, we arrived in Jamaica late Saturday afternoon the 19th. Since that is the busiest travel day and time at the airport in Montego Bay I arranged a travel package with Club Mobay. We were met at the plane and guided past the two hour wait at immigration and customs and quickly whisked to the Club Mobay and Couples waiting lounges. Highly recommend this if you’re arriving at a busy time.
We never had an issue with CTI running out of premium liquor. Actually Crown Royal is my favorite and all of the bars had it. There were always plenty of premium favorites at each bar throughout the day. They restock your mini-fridge each day with the liquor (not premium) of your choice and two Red Stripe beers. Make sure to bring a bottle opener with you for the beer.
We also had green flags each day. I was a little worried when some of the recent reviews described their red flag days. Guess we got lucky our week with the weather (or maybe those folks just were unlucky).
I did bring a lot of $1’s for tipping and it was always appreciated. They do not expect it, but it’s nice to give to show respect, which is the word they use when you tip them.
There is not much of a night life at the resort, and that was fine for us. We had a couple late nights at the piano bar which was fun.
We had an awesome time and look forward to hopefully returning in the future. We met quite a few couples who split their time between the different Couples Resorts. That seems to be a great idea as well.

Room Tip: We were ocean side, just over the swim up bar. Not bad, but would have liked a higher room. The ins...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
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2,105 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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English first
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2013 via mobile

My wife and I chose this resort to celebrate our anniversary. When we arrived we were immediately impressed with the condition of the resort and the service. This is an older resort that recently underwent renovations - hats off to management who managed to update the resort but at the same time maintain the original vibe and charm.

As we have come to expect with Couples the food was very good. Service in all areas was excellent as the staff made sure that all guests needs were taken care of.

We will definitely consider returning.

Stayed February 2013
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5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

My husband and I spent our honeymoon here from 12/16-12/23/12. We didn't book a suite at first, and when we were taken to our standard room, it was very cheap looking, small, the top lock on the entry door was broken, the bathroom was the size of a closet and didn't have a tub, and the bed was lumpy looking (didn't actually sleep in it). Oh, and the trip to the room was interesting - the elevator looked ancient and was rusted on the outside. It was small and musty, and the hallway leading to the room was dark and small. When I later inquired about the "fully renovated" statement on the website, I was told that all of the plumbing from the '40s was updated, new carpet was put in, and a new wing was built (2009). I asked if we could get a suite in the new building, and fortunately, one was left. The new building had the same carpet as the old, but it was clean (no elevators, though) and the suite was spacious with a soak-in tub, a gorgeous view of the beach, a sitting area, bar, robes, etc. The only thing we really didn't like was the open shower because the whole bathroom floor got soaked with every shower. However, housekeeping came twice a day so it wasn't a real issue.

The Dunns River Falls tour and party catamaran tour are included, and we signed up (quick and easy... actually did the party boat sign-up when we saw the bus getting loaded). They're definitely fun, you feel safe, the staff explain everything, and it was beautiful. The weather was perfect... all resort staff and cabbies were friendly and helpful. The food was EXCELLENT!! We enjoyed everything and there was none of that recycled, stale food that you sometimes find at all inclusive resorts.

The resort had a beach party with entertainment one night and a trip to Margaritaville afterward. We shopped in the tourist shopping area in downtown Ochie. However, I don't recommend going to the flea market. As soon as we left the barrier of the tourist shopping area, we were bombarded with local people trying to sell us CDs, braid my hair, be our personal tour guide, throw necklaces on us (they say they're free, but then they ask for a donation if you take one). We had no idea how aggressive local sellers were and we felt increasingly uncomfortable because people wouldn't take "no" for an answer. Otherwise, we had a fantastic time - booked an ATV tour through Chukkah - and I would definitely go back.

Room Tip: Only stay in the new building.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
107 helpful votes 107 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2013

I'm a little late writing this review as we stayed at Couples Tower Isles last November. I am also writing this from a coeliac point of view. Before booking I mailed customer service to ask if my dietary requirements could be met and was assured they could. We went ahead and booked the hotel, one positive was the free transfers from Kingston as we were flying BA.

We arrived, collected our bags and walked through customs no problem, once through we were met with our taxi driver holding a card up with our surname. We were glad of this as we didn't have to wade through the locals trying to take your bags off you for tips. It's not that we mind paying tips but everyone was giving us the heebie jeebies for going to Jamaica and warning us to stay safe!

We sat in the (old) taxi and set off. The driver was praying we would get through Kingston before nightfall which didn't reassure us much! It took us an age to get through there, red lights, people approaching from the side of the road trying to sell things....and when we came across another red light the driver told us if it was full night time no-one stops at red lights due to the dangers, we became seriously worried!! It took about an 90mins to get through Kingston and Spanish Town with the roads getting increasingly worse. As we got into the mountains it was pure blackness, no lights and all the traffic coming towards us had main beam on. The mountains spiralled up and around and around then down and around and around, that's the way it continued until we almost arrived at our hotel.

On arrival at the hotel we were greeted with a smile and an offer of a cold drink. My husband requested a beer and I had a wine. We checked in, a sous chef came out to speak to me and said any problems with my food then just ask for him. Our porter took us to the room within minutes and told us to go to the Patio restaurant as they would be closing soon. We sat down, I asked what was gluten free on the menu and within minutes was advised. That was the easiest my dining got until almost the end of the 14 days!

We were there for 14 days and to cut a long story short, I struggled to eat anything substantial until the last 5 days when another chef looked after me. I was offered plenty of fruit and salad but very, very limited meat or potatoes. It got to the point where I was actually shaking due to hunger and resorted to going to the hotel shop and buying crisps (chips) to get some carbs inside me. Although I have to say, my husband thought the food was wonderful, but repetitive, after 14 days.

We booked into Eight Rivers twice, once for my husband's 50th birthday, the second time for what I thought I would get my protein and carbs. Wrong on both accounts. The first time we went to Eight Rivers I had booked it prior to arriving, via customer services, as I wanted to surprise my husband on his birthday night. We went into the restaurant and were told there was no booking for us. I told the 'manager' I had booked this some 3 weeks before, informed him I had told customer service it was my husband's 50th birthday and also requested a gluten free meal. He became quite aggressive and told us it wasn't his fault and to speak to the customer service front desk. He managed to squeeze us in although I had a poor meal and they gave my husband a rushed dessert in the form of a (small) birthday dessert.

The days went on and Mr. Erroll Sewell appeared in the restaurant. The chef who came out into the restaurant to see if the service was going ok, and boy, was I glad to meet him! My husband spoke to him first and asked what could I eat as I was really struggling by this time. He took me under his wing and looked after me whenever he was on shift and even made special desserts for me, something I have never had anywhere I've eaten..UK or abroad! He arranged for me to have meat and potatoes, alongside the long suffering salad and fruit, he was an absolute angel! The second time we booked into Eight Rivers, yet again they were not informed I had requested a gluten free meal. I was offered salad and fruit once more and to be honest, became quite annoyed at the lack of communication from the customer service front desk to the restaurant. Erroll Sewell appeared in front of me once more in Eight Rivers, explained he was going home as it was the end of his shift but before he left he arranged with the other chefs in the kitchen for me to have a gluten free meal, a chicken and potato combination....happy days!

Aside from the food problems, we had a lovely holiday. The Island was amazing, it was so nice to sunbathe au naturale, have a bar on tap, wall to wall sunshine, food (!) brought over every lunch time and lovely au naturale sunbathing conditions. We met some fabulous people, many of who we are still in touch with now and planning future holidays. Also, Dunn's River was a brilliant laugh :)

The majority of the staff were really friendly, sometimes service was a bit hap-hazard and they forgot to bring the correct meals or the correct drinks but at times they were rushed off their feet. The mini bar in the room was stocked as requested via the in-room card, litre bottles not shots! Join the Couples Club on-line before you go, check in and request what you want in the mini bar before you arrive. I did and it was all there :)

Would we go back? No. Then again we never revisit a place twice so don't take that the wrong way.

Oh ,and the rooms! We booked into a superior ocean front room. It was a bit dated with cracked floor tiles, mouldy shower tiles but the view was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!!!!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newburgh, IN
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

We really enjoyed our week at CTI. The staff was friendly and everyone worked long days but remained polite and friendly. No problem mon. The array of food was phenomenal. We particularly liked the Patio Grill where you could get a burger and fries. That's something we've craved at other AI resorts. The beach was surprisingly small, but we never felt crowded and got more than enough sun time. We would absolutely recommend this resort, and will return someday, hopefully after experiencing some of the other Couples resorts on Jamaica.

Room Tip: We enjoyed our 2nd floor ocean view room in Buidling #3. Spent some time reading on our balcony and...
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  • Stayed January 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Catharines, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

Loved this resort and the staff. The bus trip was a little long, but worth every mile. It was clean, the rooms were great, and the food and drinks were tops!! The best part was being able to drink the water from the tap (which they had free travel water bottles and filling stations). First trip we didn't get sick. Even though we never made it to the private island, sailed around it on the party boat. The most fun ever..being able to jump off and swim in a crystal clear bay. I would say that the staff made it the best experience and we can't wait to go back and visit them. Thank you Tower Isle.

Room Tip: We enjoyed section 4..near the swim up pool and ocean view.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pace, Florida
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2013

I cannot say anything bad about this resort. It was the best experience. All the staff remember your names. They will go out of their way to help. This was our first time to Jamaica and we will definitely go back to Couples. From check in to check out.....there are not words to say how wonderful it is. I read some horrible things about the water sports but, they were very nice when we went and my husband took diving lessons. He loved the experience. Food and entertainment was great.

LOVE LOVE LOVE Couples Tower Isle!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed September 2012, 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Couples Tower Isle

Address: St. Mary, Ocho Rios, Jamaica (Formerly Couples Ocho Rio)
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Business Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#7 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Couples Tower Isle 4*
Number of rooms: 226
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Playground to Hollywood celebrities in the 1950s, glamorous Couples Tower Isle exudes a chic sophistication perfectly balanced by a relaxed Caribbean sensuality. Perched on the lush terrain of Ocho Rios, Jamaica—the resort seduces with breathtaking sea views, a wide sandy beach and century-old palm trees. Discover the joys of snorkeling among the reefs, windsurfing on the waves, or sailing into the sunset on a catamaran, rum punch in hand. Intricate blue tile work and jade chaise lounges offset the striking white retro architecture. Luxurious rooms boast private ocean-breeze balconies. Whether being pampered in the Zen-inspired spa—recognized as "Best in the Caribbean" by Travel+Leisure—sipping cocktails at the piano bar or indulging in an exquisite meal alfresco, Couples Tower Isle creates countless intimate moments that inspire you to return again and again. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Couples Tower Isle Hotel Ocho Rios
Couples Hotel Ocho Rios
Couples Ocho Rios
Couples Hotel Isle
Couples Ochos Rios
Ochos Rios
Couples Tower Isle Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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