My wife and I just returned from a 7 day trip, April 2013. We had a good time, never left the resort and here is our review of what we thought.
Travel- About 1.5 - 2 hours from Airport. once you get to Ochos Rios, its one of the first stops.
Food- Good variety between the Buffet, grill, pizza, Italian restaurant and Japanese restaurant. We were never disappointed, the buffet had an on-going change in menu, pizza was great, grill typical menu, water and soda in the in-room frig stocked daily and a couple of nights they had an under the stars dinner which, again, food not disappointing. The only place that we did not enjoy was the Italian Restaurant. As every resort, the most "up-scale" place to eat, but food was not something to look forward to (for example, lasagna tasted more like the pizza and everything was over salted).
Rooms- Seems like a majority of rooms had joining doors. If you turned off the air conditioner, you could hear the people speaking next door, with the air conditioner on, not a problem. I assume this is done since it is not an all adult resort and would be great for large families. Rooms are VERY basic... White tile, old sliding balcony doors , white walls and linen and new furniture from the 90's. Always clean, just expected a little more newer feel. Beds... so-so, sleep-able.
Staff- Staff was great. very attentive, helpful and always smiling. While on the Beach, they were always around to take drink orders.
Entertainment- Various Daily activities with nighttime entertainment. Had a band play almost every night which is great idea. Kids- lots of options for them outside and inside (entertainment room with Playstations, movies, and even what look like a daycare!)
Beach- Good size, the actual beach for the Resort is large with great water. Plenty of chairs around, however, shade areas are limited to the trees. No beach umbrellas, so getting out early to guarantee a shade spot could be a little stressful for those Type A personalities. Two pools were good size with plenty of umbrellas.
Recommendations: Beach towels weren't available till 9. Bar's didn't open till about 10-ish (not that we drank that early, but would be a good option to have), during check-in, they have you sit down in the lobby and the staff will take your passports and credit card to check you in..... makes most people uncomfortable not being able to see what your doing with our personal information. Spa- prices are pretty expensive for a non-luxury resort. And, would recommend that the Concierge take our recommendations, like a comment card, instead of telling us to post them on "trip advisor".
Final recommendation: Would recommend going to Jewel Runaway for a relaxing time on the beach, with or without children, but not for a couples romantic vacation.
Center, courtyard rooms can be louder at night with all the entertainment.
See more room tips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Report response as inappropriate
thank you for staying with us at Jewel Runaway Bay as well as giving such a detailed report.
Please note that We are at least 30 minutes before Ocho Rios.
I am glad that you enjoyed our food. I will send the chef your perception of the Italian restaurant as we know that everyones tastes are different and we will try to please all of those tastes.
The rooms are still being worked on piece by piece I am glad that you found it cleas as that is the most important thing, I would think.
I am sorry that you did not let us know that you needed an umbrella on the beach. Had we known we would have brought you one. we have more in the storeroom as well as on the Three pool decks. I am sorry you did not get to see the third pool deck as a lot of couples hang out near that one.
We have an electronic questionnaire that we send out if you left your email address as you should recieve it shortly.
thanks again and we look forward to your return.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.