My family and I have vacationed at Iberostar properties in many different places throughout Mexico and the Caribbean, but usually star at a 4+ or 5 star property. This time, my husband and I were travelling with our 20 year old daughter, who had a late university break, March 2-8/2013, we wanted the Iberostar Rose Hall Suites which was not offered by our tour operator, Sunwing, so opted for the Iberostar Rose Hall Beach, in Montego Bay, which is rated a 4 star property, and I would agree that it is exactly that. As expected, the grounds are beautiful and well-kept and clean. The hotel is well laid out with a beautiful pool, with swim-up bar, and the pool is in close proximity to the beach. There were many lounge chairs by the pool, and on the beach, and the hotel had many bar servers to bring drinks throughout the day. There is a buffet restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and it offered extensive variety. There was something for everybody, and for all ages. The buffet was clean and kept replenished regularly. Special requests, such as grilled chicken/beef and vegetables without oil or egg white omelettes for breakfast were easily accommodated. Buffet staff were friendly and eager to help, especially at dinner. As well, there are specialty restaurants at this resort, and we did not have a problem obtaining a reservation at any of them. We particularly liked the Cajun and Japanese restaurants. The Steak House, for us, was mediocre...too many fried choices. The Steak House is also a Beach buffet, but small, for lunch.
Although I had paid for an oceanview hotel room, I was given an oceanfront room. The location was perfect and the view was pretty. My husband and I would normally book a junior suite. At this resort, the junior suite does not offer 2 double beds, but only 1 king and a pull-out bed. I did not think it was fair to have our daughter in a pull-out, so we were limited to a regular room. I found the hotel room small, and in need of a renovation.
While at the Rose Hall Beach, I was MOST IMPRESSED with the Star Friends at this particular resort. They have unlimited smiles, energy and enthusiasm, and spent a great deal of time during each day introducing themselves, meeting and talking to guests, and getting EVERYBODY involved in activities. Particular favourites were Cadine, Jada, Maria Lava Child, Lemon Head, Thunder and Lightening. Even the trainees, Barbie and Nemo, were just wonderful. In fact, I recognized the "boss", Rafael, from one of the Mexican Iberostar properties. This resort has the BEST STAR FRIENDS of any Iberostar property we have stayed at. I sincerely hope each and every one of them is still at this Resort upon our return, and we will go back.
I am a travel consultant and since I had really wanted the property next door, Iberostar Rose Hall Suites, I made an appointment to see that property, which is walking distance from the Rose Hall Beach. In fact, the Suites has better shops, the mini casino, disco and spa. I was able to see a typical room, which was much nicer than the Rose Hall Beach. However, I was unimpressed with the property in general. The lobby and halls are "dark", whereas the Rose Hall Beach is brighter. The Suites has a Lazy River, but the grounds are prettier at the Rose Hall Beach. I would say the Rose Hall Beach is the more fun property, and more family-oriented. If you want a quieter vacation, you may opt for the Suites, but would recommend the Buffet at the Rose Hall Beach. The Suites is significantly more expensive than the Rose Hall Beach. Since most of our vacations are spent in the sun by the pool and beach, and not in the room, I would say the Rose Hall Beach is more value for your dollar. If you want truly beautiful and luxurious, try the Iberostar Grand, which is next to the Suites on the other side.
All in all, our family was very pleased with the Iberostar Rose Hall Beach. I would rate the grounds a 5, the pool a 5 and the beach a 4. It is pretty, and goes the distance of the 3 Iberostar properties. However, there was seaweed that the staff worked hard at clearing away, and for us it was clean enough.
We already miss the many staff friends we made at this Resort. We would not hesitate to go back, and hope to very soon.