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“WOW! What a great place!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sandals Royal Plantation

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Sandals Royal Plantation
5.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Main Street, Ocho Rios 2, Jamaica   |  
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Ranked #3 of 40 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Valparaiso, Indiana
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“WOW! What a great place!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

We just came back two weeks ago from Sandals Royal Plantation. Had never stayed at an all-inclusive and never had butlers. Well, this is an experience you shouldn't miss! Our room was great with wonderful views of the resort and the ocean. All of the suites are oceanfront - we were on the west side and loved it. Our travel agent did make sure when booking that we had a separate tub and shower. Definitly a plus as the bathrooms are small. No vegetation blocking our views and no bugs or critters at night. We slept with the French-balcony doors open every night and fell asleep to the sound of the sea. Service was spectacular! When you arrive you are assigned two butlers for your stay. (great job Marvin & Jermaine!!!) They take notes and make sure that your every wish comes true. We were celebrating our 20th anneversary. Mentioned it and that we wanted to do something special for dinner one night. Our butler Marvin suggested allowing him to set up something in our room. Take a look at the swan towel sculpture he made on our bed! Had a 6 course meal served to us by a special waiter with candle light and music from the band playing on the Terrace. What a special night! From the beach waiters to the restaurant servers - it was all fabulous. It's a smaller, quiet resort. Perfect for romance and relaxation. But if you want some nightlife, you can go next door to the Sandals Grand Riveria (via shuttle or walk the short beach between). The pool here is quite small and not located in a very sunny, breezy spot, so we stuck to the west beach. It was small but perfect for couples. We could always get loungers and an umbrella. Wait staff always bringing great concoctions from the bar - all top shelf liquor. The bartenders here are masters of mixology. Every person who worked at this resort was friendly and smiling. Always helpful and although there is always some kind of maintenance going on, the staff stays out of your way and steps aside if you come upon them at work. So many little details were provided at this place, I could go on forever. It is sophisticated, charming and classy without being stuffy or snooty. Although there are only three real restaurants (with bar food/snacks served in the Wobbly Peacock), the food was tremendous. We had breakfast served by our butlers in our room at least three mornings. Le Papillon is French cuisine at its finest. Be sure to bring a dressy outfit or two to eat there - long sleeve shirts for men a must. The Terrace always had a great breakfast buffet, omlette station or order off the ever changing menu and the resort manager, Peter, was always present and overseeing staff, food service and making sure all of his guests were happy. They changed up the menu every night so the food was never boring. Great lunches right at the beach from the Grill, which became a white table clothe setting at dinner time. We have been to Grand Cayman five times, stayed in a condo and cooked in half the time we were there. The Royal Plantation has spoiled me forever! The only thing we missed from the Caymans is the long beautiful beach walks on 7-mile beach. Not possible here, but all the stairs will give you a good work out every day. Best to say it was the most perfect vacation we have ever taken! We re-booked for next year before we left - we loved it so much. If you want a relaxing, romantic vacation, this is the place to go. Keep in mind there are stairs everywhere you want to go, so this is not a place for someone with physical limiations. Beautiful grounds and gardens, well maintained resort. It's truely paradise!

Room Tip: West side rooms have better views. Make sure to ask for a room with separate tub and shower.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (435)
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English first
Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

Luv'd our time here,will return for sure! The service was great in every aspect! They took extra care to tend to every little detail so our stay was so special! Luv'd every minute! It could not have made my fiftyith birthday any better! This was an excellent choice!

  • Stayed July 2012
    • 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.
Circleville,Oh
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

Not sure I want to give up the secret but Royal Plantation deserves the praise. .This was our 8th trip to Royal Plantation. Flawless service, incredible food (not to be had at any other all inclusive we've experienced),friendly experienced staff, a general manger who bends over backwards to make sure your visit is perfect(and who jumps in to help staff whenever needed) and an over all perfect vacation experience. In the interests of visiting other countries we have tried other hotels in the Caribbean and have found that they simply cannot compare with Royal Plantation on any level. If you want to travel to many islands, do that first because after you have experienced Royal Plantation, anyplace else will come in second.

Room Tip: no bad rooms here. all are ocean view, all are butler serviced
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  • Stayed February 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.
Calgary
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

My husband and I recently spent 4 days at the Sandals Royal Plantation for our honeymoon and it was wonderful. This resort is perfect for couples looking to get away from the craziness that some of the large hotel chains provide (which are great for certain occasions). There is an element of class and sophistication at this resort that can be hard to come by in a rather touristy country.

We had contacted Ruth DeMuth of Trip Guy Travel as we had seen her name come up on a few reviews and we are glad we did! She was awesome to work with! We told her we were looking for something a little more intimate and romantic than where we had had our destination wedding and she delivered. She recommended this resort as being perfect for a honeymoon for their level of service and amenities and she was right.

The staff at this resort are simply amazing and know the perfect balance between making sure you want for nothing while giving you space and privacy. The food was incredible and there are plenty of little surprises (like fresh made coconut chips served at the bar) that make your experience memorable. Our butlers were very friendly and always willing to help (thanks Audell & Tafari!!). The bar staff were hilarious and definitely know how to put together a great cocktail. You don't even have to know what you want and they seem able to come up with the perfect drink!! They are quite simply amazing at their jobs!

The manager's cocktail party was a neat occasion for guests to be able to meet and mingle with the manager and other members of the staff. Senior management seemed to be fairly accessible throughout our stay if you wanted to talk with them about something. William, the F&B manager was always wandering around tables at dinnertime asking how guests were doing and was always willing to chat. The managers and butler even see you off at the end of your stay which was also a nice touch.

Besides the staff, the grounds of this resort are absolutely beautiful. The gardens are immaculate and the beach is clean and well kept. Having spent a week at one of the big resorts, it was a nice change that every couple had some privacy on the beach and had a little spot to themselves. You weren't crawling over top of each other to get to a chair and if there weren't any chairs available, the watersports guy would set some up for you. This was great because you didn't have to worry about waking up at 7:00am to 'reserve' a chairs as is the case elsewhere. The only note here is that there are quite a few stairs to get to and from the beach which may not be ideal for people with mobility concerns.

Despite having quite a quiet and relaxing atmosphere, there were options available to be as active as you wanted as well. There were watersports available right at Royal Plantations and anything that wasn't there was just a short stroll (or bus transfer) away at the Sandals next door. We did a couple of dives and were quite impressed with the quality of the diving. There are a few vendors along the route to the other resort but they were all friendly and not too pushy which was appreciated.

Overall, this resort definitely delivered on being a sophisticated, romantic resort. The only things that we thought could have been better would have been the bath in our suite (we were in a Coconut Grove suite) and a better selection of house wine. If you love your baths, I would recommend getting a different room as our's was pretty utilitarian. We also realize that everyone's taste in wine is different but we didn't enjoy any of the house wines which tainted our dining experience slightly. With the incredible quality of the food, a nice glass of wine would have been the icing on the cake.

If you are looking for a travel agent to assist with any of your trip arrangements, you can't go wrong with Ruth DeMuth. She was very prompt with her responses and full of helpful suggestions. She seems to know the resorts inside and out and can recommend something that will fit what you are looking for (and your budget!). Next time we go down to the Caribbean we will definitely be looking for Ruth's assistance.

Room Tip: Coconut Grove rooms do not have very nice baths.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Level Contributor
29 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2013

Status quo here and then some. My husband and I returned to the Royal Plantation after being invited back by the manager Peter Fraiser during hurricane sandy. We were hesitate to return to the same place twice since it never seems to be as nice as the first time. Not the case here. The SRP just keeps getting better and better. The hospitality, the property, the food and the service are all amazing once again.

This is a small resort, so if you want to relax without worry, this is the place. The views are beautiful and if you have any special request or mobility problems, the staff will accommodate you. When you check in, you are assigned two butlers. Use this to your advantage. It takes some getting use to if you're use to doing everything yourself. Ask the butlers to make your dinner reservations as soon as you arrive. You can always change or cancel, but you may not be able to book at the last minute and get what you want. Have a special place on the beach, special drink or snack, let your butlers know, and they will arrange it all for you. Tours as well.

The rooms are a little out dated, but very comfortable. The butlers will surprise you every now and again with special things in your room. For me, this was a nice treat because I'm always doing this for my family. Thank you Tafari and Audelle! My husband and I have stayed in both the East and West Wings. The East wing is certainly more quiet, however staying in the West Wing did not bother us beacuse we would spend our evenings in the Wobbly Peacock lounge with those wild and crazy bartenders and entertainment staff. "Calm Down!" Thanks gentlemen. You know who you are.

Last October, I thought we had found the perfect beach resort because there was not one guess putting their book on the beach chair at 6:00 am. Not the case in March. Perhaps that is the difference in high season and low season travel. Not sure. The beaches are small as well as the pool, but we like getting to know our neighbor.

Room Tip: Views are great in every room but the East side is more private.
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  • Stayed March 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NYC
Level Contributor
28 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2013

My boyfriend and I were looking for a 3 night getaway and Sandals Royal Plantation hit the spot! This was our first time staying at a Sandals, first time to Jamaica, and first time staying at an all inclusive so we weren't sure what to expect. From the moment we stepped onto the property, we were warmly greeted & our butler Adrian showed us to our room, gave a tour of the property, and set us up with our drinks and snacks! Our butlers Adrian and Donard went above and beyond to make our stay amazing! They thought of everything and made sure we were taken care of... and are the biggest reasons we will be returning this August! That said, I have to add that the resort is breathtaking-- it's on the smaller side but it was exactly what we were looking for-- something quant and quiet-- away from all the spring breakers and hustle and bustle. To top it all off, the food & drinks were phenomenal!! We had the opportunity to try Le Papillon which was fantastic! Everything-- from breakfast to the coconut shrimp and jerk chicken at lunch to the fresh grilled fish dinners were out of this world! We are so pleased with our stay that not only did we book our August trip while on this vacation-- but are looking to have our wedding at the resort next year!

Room Tip: Great House Ocean Front Suite
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  • Stayed March 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario Canada
Level Contributor
42 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 185 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2013

We often enjoy doing split stays between 2 or 3 Sandals resorts. In January/February we spent almost 3 weeks split between Sandals Carlyle, Sandals Royal Plantation and our favourite, Sandals Whitehouse.

We loved the elegance and beauty of this resort. The views from our room and from the terrace and pool were absolutely stunning.

For anyone with mobility issues, please be aware that there are plenty of stairs to maneuvre each day, especially to go to the beach. We booked a Royal Great House Oceanview room which is only located in the West Wing, specifically because the West Wing is the only building with an elevator. Our room was located on the 2nd floor which is the same level as the restaurant area...so a very easy walk.

Our room had a French style balcony...which is not a balcony as such but rather an indoor seating alcove where you open the double doors and sit indoors to see the gorgeous view and hear the waves of the Caribbean. The room was spacious with a separate shower and whirlpool tub, and nice size "walk-in" closet. One point to mention about room locations in the West Wing..on the evenings we retired early, we could hear the music from the terrace, AND the music from Sandals Grande Riviera which is directly behind the West Wing. A little bit of noise overload but it didn't bother us at all...I mention it simply so people can be aware.

There are two beach areas to enjoy and a small pool (only 12 loungers at the pool). Beach and pool drink service was very frequent.

Service was top rate at the resort. There is nothing the staff wouldn't do for you, and though we find this at most Sandals, the level of service at SRP is at an even higher level. This next comment is not a reflection on our particular butlers, but rather a note in general about the butler service. In our experience we've had better and more dedicated butler service at other Sandals resorts...for instance at Sandals Royal Caribbean, Sandals Negril and Sandals Emerald Bay. There was nothing wrong at all with our service at Royal Plantation, but I just didn't find it was as good as what we've had on other Sandals vacations.

Food was excellent at all meals and if you don't wish to physically go to the restaurants, but would rather dine on the terrace, you can do so and order from any of the restaurant menus.

There was one glitch to our vacation and it's important for newcomers to know this in advance of packing for their trip...Le Papillon has a dress code which requires long-sleeved shirts. This is not mentioned on the Sandal site nor is it a dress code policy at any other Sandals. As Sandals regulars who have been to or stayed at all Sandals resorts, we've dined at many white-glove restaurants including Gordon's. Hubby has never needed to pack a long sleeved shirt for these...always, collared polo or golf shirts have sufficed with a pair of Dockers and closed toe shoes. Despite having advance "permission" (as relayed by our butlers) for hubby to dine at Le Papillon with his short-sleeved solid white polo shirt, when we arrived there for dinner, it was very apparent from the reaction of the restaurant manager that hubby was not dressed appropriately. And yet, we watched as a gentleman wearing an untucked short-sleeved Tommy Bahama shirt was seated with no problem. We were feeling very uncomfortable and embarrassed at being denied entrance despite having permission, and our butler kindly offered his jacket for my husband to wear (he refused as there was quite a difference in size between the two of them, and hubby was already feeling embarrassed enough).

We fully believe in dress codes. We adhere to them at all Sandals resorts. But SRP...you have a gap here....you can't expect people to pack the proper clothing if you don't communicate it in advance. Your policy is different than at any other Sandals resort. Mr. Fraser, we spoke to you about this and we accepted your very gracious apology concerning our situation. You mentioned that the request for updating the Sandals website had immediately been communicated and would be updated shortly (our conversation on January 25th). You should be made aware that to date, there is no updated information on the Sandals site. It still says Le Papillon requires resort evening wear (elegant wear. dress pants for men, no t-shirts or sleeveless shirts, dress shoes) which is the standard dress code for fine dining restaurants across all Sandals resorts. I expect you are still having to accommodate unaware guests who have not packed a long sleeved shirt and are perhaps going through the same experience we did.

In summary, aside of the issue mentioned above which is important considering it impacts your dining experience at this small and intimate resort, our stay was very enjoyable and we are happy we experienced Sandals Royal Plantation.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Royal Plantation

Address: Main Street, Ocho Rios 2, 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 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#2 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Business Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Royal Plantation 5*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•All suite resort and all are serviced by butlers trained by the Guild of Professional English Butlers•2 private beaches with beach butler service•The Caribbean’s only Champagne and Caviar Bar•Exquisite International, Mediterranean, Caribbean and French cuisine•24 hour in suite dining•Complimentary transfers from this resort to all Sandals Resorts•Voted Sandals Resorts “World Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row•Five Star Diamond Award - American Academy of Hospitality Sciences ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Royal Plantation Hotel Ocho Rios
Royal Plantation Ocho Rios
Royal Plantation Jamaica
Sandals Royal Plantation Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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