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“It could be better than it was - but still ok.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica

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Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Salt Coopers Villa | Runaway Bay, Runaway Bay, Jamaica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 15 hotels in Runaway Bay
Toronto
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“It could be better than it was - but still ok.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013

I'll start by saying it wasn't a bad place at all. Its a nice grand resort in beautiful Jamaica (biased because that's my heritage) and definitely a nice getaway. While on vacation, you need to 'slow down' and that's what Jamaica is all about - 'no rush man' - jus chill :) The lower than expected rating may be harsh but still deserved. The resort could be so much more - a true 5 star experience if they'd just get their 'ish' together.

Check in was fine - the front desk staff expedited us through the process and even served us a glass of 'something' - maybe champagne mixed with fruit juice - really can't say because it wasn't great - a bit too sweet for me.

The room was nice as well. We paid for the sea view and got it. Top floor so the view was great. The room was good too - very big - nice and surprisingly comfortable king size bed, the pillows could be a bit thicker to round that out. The washroom was nice although starting to show its wear. The marble hides some of the aging but looking closely you can see it could benefit from a power washing or some sort of treatment.

The main buffet is a good mix of traditional and local jamaican options for those daring souls. All in all it was 'meh'. I found the Jamaican dishes way too salty (or saltier than what my mom makes). The rest of food was standard resort food - kinda bland - definitely made with volume in mind. The specialty restaurants were good (your package will dictate how many you can access) - we had the Japanese Teppanyaki which was good with a lively staff - the Garden Grill which was ok - not great but ok - and the 'Don Pablo' which was an attempt at 'high-end cuisine' and was about 90% there except for a poor wine list (red or wine - no variation).

The beaches - well just make sure you ask where the beach is. The one directly north of the main pool is the 'snorkel beach' more for that activity. The 'good beach' is just west of the main pool. Its nice, the water is clear and shallow for a good distance from the shore.

So the things that ruined it for me

Dirty Bed Linens - on 2 occasions our bed was made with stained linens. We called the front desk one night at midnight to provide new linens which took 2 phone calls and 45 minutes!!!

Activities - there aren't really a lot of activities and those that are available are run by lackluster staff. Not really engaging, making side jokes with other staff in 'patois slang' which I understand and found a bit rude.

Electrical problems - our room had a faulty electric switch (resorts usually require you to put one of the room keys in to run the electricity while you're in the room - you remove it when you leave to conserve power). Ours didn't work at all - took 2 visits from the on-site electrician. The first just kicked the outlet which worked temporarily but died the next morning. The second guy actually took time to open the switch and essentially bypass the key mechanism so we could run our AC without the key.

I guess I would hope that staff would be attentive to their guests but things seem to be done on their schedule - or 'jamaican time' :)

Room Tip: They apparently have a premium package called 'Don Pablo' which includes a flat screen TV in...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 2 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.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 4, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for sharing your comments with us. We appreciate your words about the room and its beautiful view, the food at a la cartes and the nice beach. However, we are sad to see that some aspects of our performance didn't meet your satisfaction and we do apologize for the inconvenience.

We are taking good note of the areas you found subpar and we will let know your observations to the managers in charge, so that they can take it into consideration.

Thank you for choosing our Grand Bahia Principe Hotels and Resorts for your Jamaican vacation; we sincerely hope to host you again on your upcoming trip, so that we could have the opportunity to provide you a more enjoyable stay.

Yours faithfully,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,528)
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English first
Hiram, Ohio, United States
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2013

Staff was fine but they seem like they are from a poor community so they friendliness only extends as far as your tip can. There is only 1 ATM on site so bring cash for other things if needed. The room was lovely and the grounds were clean but aging in some places. The dinner at the buffet was tasty and the sandy beach was amazing.

It is far away from places to visit so arrange for cab services as well. The ocean and pool is beautiful.

Room Tip: Stay in a 14-1600 room so that there does not have to be so much walking
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 5, 2013
Dear Zinga,

We appreciate your feedback and your kind words about the lovely room, cleanliness, food at the buffets, the pool and beach.

On the other hand, we are overwhelmed knowing the impressions with which you left our property and we do apologize for this situation. However, kindly let us point out that it is through our customer satisfaction surveys that we learn in the great majority of the cases our staff is able to show to our guests the warmth, friendliness, joviality and hospitality that characterize the Jamaican people.

We are very sorry that we were not able to show convincingly these qualities in your case and we apologize again for any inconvenience you may have had.

We thank you for vacationing with us and we sincerely hope to be afforded with the opportunity to host you again in the future and provide you a more enjoyable stay.

Respectfully,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
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Willingboro, New Jersey
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2013

We traveled August 24 - 31, 2013. I have visited Jamaica five times and this was by far the best resort stay. I loved the property and the service. The staff is wonderful, great food and entertainment. I prefer the location away from the city - Montego Bay.

One negative about the stay; the housekeeping staff is great but you do not receive washcloths in a timely manner. I read about this in an on-line review prior to leaving and purchased a package of washcloths to bring with me. That was a smart move.

Other than that, I love this resort and will definitely return.

Room Tip: Rooms with an ocean view; the sunrise/sunsets are the best I have seen.
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  • Stayed August 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
    • 4 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.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 4, 2013
Dear Marilyn,

We appreciate your warm review. Many thanks for letting us know that you have considered your vacation with us as your best resort stay so far in Jamaica. It is thrilling to learn that you enjoyed the location, food and entertainment.

It was a pleasure to serve you. We sincerely hope to see you again in our property on your upcoming trip to Jamaica.

Yours sincerely,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
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Toronto, Canada
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2013

A wonderful holiday with my family who enjoyed every moment of their visit and cant wait to return The few issues we had were immediately rectified.Nothing to really mention as these occur even in our own homes.You cant please everyone no matter how you try.On percent of the human race will find something to fuss about and nothing you do will satisfy them.

Room Tip: All the rooms have something to offer whether its the ocean or the beautiful landscape so each one h...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 3, 2013
Dear Lucas,

We much appreciate your kind note. It is thrilling to know that you and your family have enjoyed your vacation to the full and are considering returning to us.

Thank you for choosing our hotel and for your recommendation to other possible travelers. We cannot wait to serve you again in our Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts, a 5 star experience in Jamaica.

Yours sincerely,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
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Chicago, Illinois
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2013 via mobile

My husband and I took our 8 year old here and we loved every minute if it. The hotel was clean and beautiful. The pool is awesome. I lived at the swim up Bar where there was free flowing Appleton Rum. Rauel the bartender at the pool is awesome. The food in the buffet was good. The ala cart restaurants choices were great as well. Great views of the ocean and beaches. Even though it was a big resort it never felt crowded. Plenty of kids to keep my only child occupied.

Cons- The nightly entertainment leaves something to be desired. They did run out of clean towels more than you would expect for a large resort.

  • Stayed August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 4, 2013
Dear Guest,

We appreciate your kind note. It is a pleasure to read that you have enjoyed every minute of your vacation, especially the pool and swim up pool bars, the beauty and cleanliness of the hotel, food at the buffets and a la cartes, the staff and the kids' friendly environment.

We thank you for your observation and we can ensure that your comments will be taken into account, to rectify this situation.

Thank you for choosing our Grand Bahia Principe Hotels and Resorts to stay in Jamaica; we sincerely hope to see you again, very soon.

Yours sincerely,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Middletown, New York
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2013

My sister-in-law & I went in August of 2012 and were very happy with our stay. This a big beautiful resort with incredible beach access and breathtaking views. The accomodations were wonderful and the resort was clean. We weren't interested in reserving the restaurants and were not disappointed at all with the buffet choices. I loved that there were so many authentic Jamaican dishes!
The Jerk Chicken Pit was by far the BEST ever! Entertainment was nice this is a family resort and they certainly cater to that. I was disappointed with the Wifi being offered in the lobby only. It's Wifi! It made no sense and it wasn't very good either, fortunately I can just turn my phone off but sucked for my SIL that had to call and check in at home.

Room Tip: I didn't take much notice of the rooms.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 3, 2013
Dear Giulia,

Thank you for your warm review. Our hotel management and staff take pride in offering an outstanding vacation to all our guests. It is rewarding to see that we have achieved that goal with you. Thank you for your words about the room, cleanliness, food at the buffet, Jerk Center and entertainment.

We would like to take this opportunity to point out that as per our standards accessing to the Wi Fi it is for free at the lobby; however, it is possible to access to Internet from all the places at the hotel, as an additional cost.

We thank you for vacationing with us and we sincerely hope to serve you again in our Grand Bahia Principe on your upcoming trip to Jamaica.

Yours sincerely,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
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Rockland, Massachusetts
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2013

The Grand Bahia Jamaica looked amazing from the outside. The lobby area is spectacular!! The hotel is a large complex with plenty of bars, resturants and a massive interconnecting pools. There is plenty of evening entertainment from a quite bar, piano bar to the entertainment square which was pretty, had shops, sports bar, karaoke, disco and outside stage with a show on each night.When you are at the shops you can haggle them down for a lower price in all the shops. just act real interested and then start to walk off. They always come back at about 1/2 the original cost.The rooms where amazing, great views of the ocean. The beach was very nice not a real shortage of chairsn Get up early if you want a good seat around the pool though.The only down side was the mattress ,very hard !!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
IselS, Social Media Coordinator at Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica, responded to this review, September 4, 2013
Dear Ken,

We are pleased to hear that we have met your expectations during your vacation with us. Thank you for your description of the property, amenities and entertainment options. We also have taken note of your observation and will make sure to forward your comments to the related manager, to take it into consideration.

Thank you for choosing Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica; we will be more than happy to host you again in the nearest future.

Yours sincerely,

Isel Salgado
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica
Report response as inappropriate
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Additional Information about Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica

Address: Salt Coopers Villa | Runaway Bay, Runaway Bay, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Runaway Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Romantic Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 Spa Hotel in Runaway Bay
#5 Family Hotel in Runaway Bay
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Runaway Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica 3.5*
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Bahia Principe Jamaica
Gran Bahia Jamaica
Gran Bahia Principe Jamaica Hotel
Grand Bahia Jamaica
Bahia Jamaica
Gran Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Jamaica
Gran Bahia Principe Jamaica Resort
Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica Runaway Bay

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