We stayed 6 nights at the ritz carlton JBR for the first week of may 2013 and in general were quite disappointed.
Before continuing, let me first say that at no point did we have any issue with any of the staff, in fact all staff without exception were excellent. All the way from club room reception to the kids club the staff were friendly and courteous, trying their best with in my opinion with a inferior product to offer.
upon checking in our second room was upgraded to the junior club suite category as our first room so this was a great start. The rooms are brand new, packed with technology, spacious and tastefully decorated. we stayed in rooms 431 and 432 in the new part of the hotel directly above the club room.
the negatives of the room are as follows, firstly you couldn't sit on your balcony and admire the sea view because the noise from the aircon of the la baie restaurant below made it just too noisy, the view is also spoiled as the hotel is doing major renovation to the beach area which it fails to make obvious during booking. for an older guest the technology in the room was a little over whelming and every night i would have to help my father close curtains / lighting etc. however this is the modern world and hard to blame the hotel.
the pool area was pleasant, we chose to spend our days by the old pool as it was quieter than the new pool area. the swim up bar pleasant and service there good. Towels and beds were ok, there no extra touches that one expects these days such as complimentary fruit / sunglass cleaning / small fruit drinks etc and this was disappointing. there are also no beds on the beach so if thats your thing then you will be dissapointed.
also unlike similar properties, the hotel garden staff choose to do all maintenance mechanically and were constant leaf blowing / stream blowing all throughout the day both by the pool and the la baie restaurant. this was incredibly annoying and not at all restful, in my opinion un acceptable for a property of this supposed level. Why they found it necessary to work by the lunch restaurant between the hours of 12 and 3 was beyond me.
now onto the new lunch time restaurant, we ate the there twice, the second time to give another chance after the first horrendous culinary experience but it was equally as bad. The restaurant has only been open a few weeks and the chef perhaps already needs replacing.
The Caesar salads on the first occasion were the worst any of us had ever consumed, topped with pink coloured chicken, not undercooked, just weird pink coloured!
the second lunch meant the 6 main courses arriving over a 30 minute period, we all ate at different times which was novel and of course wholly unacceptable. all interspersed with leaf blowing and strimming from garden staff. they offered to comp the meal which was nice, however i declined to i can write this with a clear conscience.
this was all in stark contrast to the other new restaurant in the lobby area called blue jade. we also ate here on two occasions and on both times the food was excellent. in fact the best meals we had in dubai. fantastic asian cuisine with great service. cant recommend this restaurant enough, it wasn't very busy and i hope it gets the support it deserves as they are offering great fayre. big thumbs up for this place.
before i forget the breakfast in both the club lounge and the main restaurant was satisfactory but nothing special, it was all there but bland and uninspiring. also the club lounge appears to have an issue with some small jumping type flies which enjoy the food before you do!
they charge for wifi here, 500 dirhams for 5 days, it doesn't work, i complained, they acknowledged they had problems and had many complaints but are still charging for the service. we were lucky staying above the club room, we piggy backed the connection there, others not so lucky i guess.
the kids club was excellent, our daughter had a great time and Pushpa and her team couldn't do enough for her...thank you
the hotel florist also does an excellent job in the public area changing the display and keeping it interesting.
in summary, seems that this hotel has been left behind somewhat in the dubai revolution. obviously the refurb gets the rooms to a good standard but the food and beverage offerings need a massive improvement or the rates need to come down. this is further reinforced by our next 5 nights spent at the one and only palm, similar priced (maybe actually slightly cheaper) and far far better.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.