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“Excellent Hotel” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection

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Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   Salt Coopers, Runaway Bay, Jamaica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 15 hotels in Runaway Bay
Manchester, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Excellent Hotel”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2013

We stayed at the Gran Bahia Principe from 17 to 31st October. We travelled with First Choice and was greeted by our rep Godfrey, who on arrival at the hotel ushered us to the Don Pablo lounge. I would definitely recommend the upgrade to Don Pablo the service was superb, they make the extra effort to ensure that your holiday is perfect. The introduction by our rep Godfrey was one of the best we have sat through, he advised us on all the excursions but we didn't feel that we were pressured into going on any excursion. The staff at GBP are a credit to the hotel and all most give a service with a smile and are so friendly, but as Godfrey said in his intro, Jamaica are 6 hours behind the UK and they don't intend to catch, so remember to relax sometimes the staff are busy and are on Jamaican time.
I would advise to take Jamaican dollars, we got a good rate with Asda money but check online at travelmoney.com, some had taken US dollars but if you changed these at reception you will be given Jamaican dollars in exchange and the rate will not be as good.
We e-mailed the hotel with our requirements which I advised you to do if you want a particular room or location, we received an e-mail back saying that they would try to accommodate our requirements but could not guarantee it. We were given exactly what we requested in block 24, 5th floor in a quiet part of the hotel in the far corner. (Room 24510) Block 24 has 7 floors and run from 24--1 to 10, all have a sea view but because they are on the side have a garden sea view instead of a pool/sea view. Block 23 has 18 rooms across in front of the pool which is on the left hand side of the hotel looking from the beach, in my opinion block 24 is newer and are just a little bit better.
Being in the Don Pablo entitles you to the exclusive area's by the pool and a roped off area on the beach. These area's have waitress service and again the staff were fantastic, Tina by the pool always had a smile and nothing was too much trouble and Tamara in the beach bar remembered our drinks and every time we had a beach day she came over to our loungers with the drinks we requested the previous day. This was without being tipped, even though we did tip the service was the same to those who didn't seem to.
We tried all the restaurants with the exception on the first Friday night which is lobster night in the buffet restaurant. We didn't have a bad meal in any of the restaurants but I could recommend the chateaubriand in the Don Pablo, the surf and turf in the Garden Grill and the show cooking in the Mikado. The service was a little slow in the Dolce Vita, but once again you are in Jamaica, no rush make an evening of it and enjoy. In the evening we tended to drink in the Don Pablo bar it is air conditioned has free Wi-Fi and also generous premium drinks. We even asked for a bottle of champagne for our room which was given without charge. The service again was excellent in here unfortunately I can't remember the bartenders name but we had some real nice chats with her and found out she had a son called Kyle. Thank you for looking after us, we tried to find you on our last night but couldn't see you at the other bar.
We only went on one excursion we wanted a relaxing holiday but we did go to Dunns River Falls which if you are steady on your feet I would highly recommend. Don't forget you towel, swim shorts, waterproof camera and a little money for tips, be aware that afterward you are ushered through stalls that sell souvenirs that can be subject to pressure selling.
The snorkelling to the left hand side of the wedding gazebo by the rocks is the best place with hundreds of fish, I took a hard boiled eggs which followed me when the realised I had food and even ate it out of my hand.
The only negative was that in our second the Palmyra restaurant which is open for breakfast exclusively for Don Pablo guests was closed for refurbishment. We had to eat in the main buffet restaurant and although they had reserved a section of the restaurant for us it was allot noisier and not as relaxing as the Palmyra which we had paid for.
In summary don't listen to negative reviews, if you stay at GBP go for the upgrade if you can and you will not be disappointed.

Room Tip: Upgrade to the Don Pablo and request block 24.
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  • Stayed October 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 10, 2013
Dear Guest,

We sincerely appreciate your remarks about your last vacation in our Hotel. We are very proud to know that we were able to satisfy your expectations and we really appreciate your positive comments about some of our excellent services, especially our show cooking, snorkeling, and our delicious “Chateaubriand “at our Don Pablo Restaurant.

We would like to thank you again for praising words about our staff members; our guest’s acknowledgment is very valuable for us.

It was a pleasure to meet you and we are looking forward to host you again in your next trip in our Grand Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, an unforgettable experience in Jamaica.

Yours faithfully,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (128)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Charleston, West Virginia
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2013

The service at Bahia Principe was outstanding. The hotel rooms have been neglected, but all the problems I encountered were resolved by the Don Pablo Collection Manager or her staff. If you go, certainly upgrade to the Don Pablo - it's worth every penny for their services alone. You also get access to pool and beach areas that are not as crowded and have bar service.

The vegetarian food was ok and they made every effort to accommodate my tastes. The wine selection could use serious improvement - the "premium" wine selection was poor and tended to be served hot. Since DP allows you unlimited a la carte access, get reservations at the Don Pablo restaurant as often as possible - definitely the best food at the resort.

The diving is really good - much better than I had been lead to believe was possible in Jamaica. There are no big fish and you'll see fish traps on the reef. Overall, it was well worth going and the dive operation was solid.

As a single woman traveling alone, I felt very safe here.

Room Tip: For the best views, the rooms on the front of the hotel are spectacular. Anything in the 11 or 21 b...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 10, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to publish your review about our Resort. We are glad to learn that the quality of our food, diving sport, and the excellent customer service impressed you and you had overall an amazing stay with us.

On the other hand, Thanks for letting us know the situation experienced during your stay, which allowed us to take appropriate action and solved them in a satisfactory manner.

Our guest opinion is very valuable for us and we really appreciate your suggestions and recommendations, please make sure that it will be taken into consideration. Once again, thank you so much for helping us to improve.

Yours sincerely,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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Lucedale, Ms
Top Contributor
114 reviews 114 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2013

We went in Oct which is the off season. The resort was laid back and kind of quiet which I enjoyed. We loved the resort, except the elevator in our building was very slow! The lounge was a nice touch, made great drinks in there & free wifi connection. Over all our week there was very relaxing. The beach isn't the most impressive or the shows at night. We did enjoy the sports bar a lot.

Room Tip: Do the upgrade the views can't be beat. I think we were in 23701
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
    • 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.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 3, 2013
Dear Latricia,

We appreciate your positive note. Our ultimate goal is to fulfill our guests’ expectations; we are feeling proud to learn that we have been able to provide you a fantastic and relaxing time during your last trip to our Hotel. It also good to know that drinks, free WIFI connection, and the sports bar were of your preference.

We have been felt proud being your hosts during your trip to Jamaica and can’t wait to host you again on your next vacation.

Warm regards,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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Merritt Island, Florida
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2013 via mobile

We completed our 6 night stay on Oct 30th. The Don Pablo Collection was worth the extra money. This resort was well kept and service was consistently good. We have nothing negative to say. We traveled with our 1 and 4 year old and they enjoyed every minute. We never stay at the same resort twice and have stayed at 9 different places in Jamaica in the past 6 years. This ranks in the top 3! Our room was 24503! Thank you for the wonderful vacation.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 3, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your feedback. We are more than happy to know that you have had a wonderful time with us, the constantly service provided by our accommodating staff, and the well kept of the property captivated your attention.

It was an honor to have the opportunity to host you. We look forward to host you again on future trips to Jamaica in our Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, a 5 star experience in Jamaica.

Warm regards,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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Ashburn, Virginia
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2013 via mobile

Overall, give it a 6-7 on a (1>10) scale. Not a horrible experience but also very far from GREAT.
Buffet - decent, we like the different themes per night but it's disappointing to see the same old food from days prior continuously put out day after day, we have seen some same dishes 4 days in a row now. No1 touching it for a reason.
Water sports - most limited we have experience at an all inclusive. Snorkeling is $40/person/hour CRAZY. Have blearily enjoyed kayaks and sail boats, guys running it are lazy and have excuses every day on why you cannot go out, too windy, to rough, to sunny, etc... Got to go out twice in 11 days after BEGGING.
Only worth coming here if you upgrade to Privilege or Don Pablo. We stayed at Sandals (ocho rios) 2 years ago, paid the same per night we just paid, blew this place out of the water.

Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Dear Guest,

We thank you for taking the time to bring your comments to our attention. It is trough communications of this nature that we are given an opportunity to assess and evaluate our performance, as well as to ensure that we maintain and deliver the level of service expected from our resort.

Our main goal strives in having a great ambience to satisfy our guest’s requirements; we regret that we were not able to fulfill your expectations. Nonetheless, please allow us to comment on the issue of your communication.

As far as your indications about the quality of the food offered in our restaurants, we are rather surprised because carefully selected products compose our gastronomy supply, taking into consideration the diversity of clients who visit our hotel. Please kindly note that we offer every evening in our Restaurant Buffet Orquid different variety of food like Spanish, Jamaican, Canadian, Japanese, Mexican... Nevertheless, we are sorry that our food services did not meet your expectations and your comments will be taken into consideration.

Furthermore we would like to express our gratitude for your positive remarks regarding our water sports services.
On behalf of our General Manager and all Team Members, we apologize for any inconvenience and we hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you again in the near future.

Yours respectfully,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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Mississauga, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2013

I cannot recall when I have enjoyed my vacation more. Every one of the Staff were polite and very helpful. The food was terrific in all of the restaurants. I have started saving so I can return in the Fall of 2014 and see the friends I have met this October. Can't wait to get back !

Room Tip: Try to get an ocean view on the 7th floor. Quiet and less noise.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 3, 2013
Dear Jane,

Thank you for your generous review. We are thrilled to learn that we were able to surpass your expectations and you have enjoyed your last vacations in our property, which is our main goal. It is encouraging to learn that room, friendly and helpful staff, and food quality and overall the service was of your choice.

Thank you for choosing our Resort for your vacation this year and we look forward to host you again on your upcoming holiday in our Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, a 5 star experience in Jamaica.

Warm regards,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Basingstoke, England, United Kingdom
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2013

Just spent 2 weeks here. All the staff were extremely helpful & friendly. The food in the Don Pablo, Picasso & Mikado restaurants were to die for. Definitely recommend do the show table in Mikado & the Chateaubriand in Don Pablo. The beach is lovely & the waiter service at the pool is great (especially Tina)!!! Any minor issues we encountered were fixed very quickly. Would recommended this hotel to any other couples looking for a completely chilled out luxury experience.

  • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, November 4, 2013
Dear Emma,

Thank you for your warm review. We appreciate that you enjoyed your stay thanks to our helpful and amazing staff. We feel also very proud of receiving your positive comments regarding our beach and our variety and quality of food in the Don Pablo and Mikado Restaurants where we were able to fulfill your expectations.

Thanks again for mentioning the staff member who did possible a wonderful trip with us and for the recommendation to other possible guests.

It was an honor to be chosen to spend your vacations in our Hotel in Jamaica and we would love to see you again and provide you a more enjoyable stay.

Yours respectfully,

Marvelis Symister
Luxury Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
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Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection

Address: Salt Coopers, Runaway Bay, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Runaway Bay
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Runaway Bay
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 Family Hotel in Runaway Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection 5*
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Also Known As:
Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection Jamaica

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