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“Great Time and Great Place” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa

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Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   The Point, Lucea, Jamaica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Lucea
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Great Time and Great Place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2009

My husband and I recently celebrated our 20th anniversary at this beautiful new property. We have been many places and I must say this was among my favourite. The hotel is immaculate and the people are extremely polite and helpful. The hotel was not at capacity so we were able to enjoy all aspects of the hotel.
The rooms were very nice. Lots of amenities. Close to everything and very spacious.
The pool was great but the beach was not as nice. They are in the process of making the main beach but there is an amazing little beach/cove on the far end of the property. A 5 minute walk. Restaurant right there. We spent many afternoons there.
Food...Amazing compared to what we have experienced and I am a catering manager so food is my business. The main dining room was very good but the Al a Cartes were very impressive, especialy the Italian, Steak House was probably my least favourite but then again I have never had a good steak in a tropical country. The hotel was not very busy so we were able to walk right in any evening and be seated immediately. I'm sure this will not be the case when it is full.
We did not venture off the property but we have been to Dunn's River Falls and that would be worth it.
I would definitely consider this hotel again And especially Jamaica. You can drink the water from the tap with no worries!

  • Liked — very clean and first class
  • Disliked — main beach
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,763 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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Ontario, Canada
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2009

Went to the Grand Palladium from Dec 27-Jan 4. Went with 5 people and met 4 people there. 45 minute ride to the hotel and be prepared to tip - they come right out and ask you for tips.

The rooms were nice, the tub was huge and the shower worked well. Not a lot of closet space though. Stayed in building 14 - try and request Budiling 11 or 12. The tv was so great. Nice flat screen and a ton of channels - great movies as well.

The food was great. Buffets were awesome and plentiful. A la cartes were good but service is very slow. Went to Asian, Italian and Mexican. 5 restaurants are open each night.

5 pools but stayed at the main pool which was huge and there were TONS of chairs. Cold pool but when you're hot you will love it. Sun beds in the water also were awesome.

Staff were amazing - especially the entertainment staff. Bar tenders were nice and staff around the resort are so friendly, always smiling and saying hi, which I'm not used to. Our maid, Audrey was so nice - left a tip everyday and brought some goodies from home to give to them.

Went on an excursion to black Creek River - touched crocodiles and had a boat ride, then off to lunch which was not included. Then we went to the YS Falls which was beautiful and to end the trip we finished off at the Appleton Rum Factory. 2.5 hour bus ride as we picked up other people. ($115 US a person). Also went to Negril for some shopping and to Ricks Cafe which was outstanding ($15 US a person).

New Years celebration was amazing - the staff went out of their way to please everyone.

Yes, this hotel is new and some tiles in the pool are falling out but that should not make or break your vacation.

I travel often and to the top resorts and this is a must. Great food, great people, great weather. All in all it was a fabulous vacation but it's what you make of it.

Feel free to message me or e-mail me robyn54@hotmail.com if you want any further information.

  • Liked — Pools, staff, food
  • Disliked — Not a huge beach
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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2 reviews
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2009

I just spent December 24th-December 31st at the Grand Palladium. I'm 33 and I traveled with people aged 14, 39, 46, and 72. I hope that I can provide a guide for those of you who have already booked your trips and have no way out no matter what I say, and those who are trying to decide if the Grand Palladium is right for them.


The property is absolutely stunning. If your only intent is to stare out at a beautiful resort then this is definitely the place for you, but if you desire more, pay close attention below to the entertainment section. While the property is stunning, it's not free from faults. Once you look closely enough, you will notice the rushed workmanship, such as a gaping hole in the bathroom shower tile or a shower door that doesn't close completely, causing you to spray water all over the floor. One staff member told us that the hotel was to be built in 5 years, but was built in 2 instead. We booked 2 rooms and one room immediately had a non-flushing toilet that was running continuously. The other room had a leak above the Jacuzzi tub coming from the room above. While these issues were annoying, once we called reception and informed them of the problem they arrived and offered a solution immediately. They fixed the toilet and we didn't have any more problems with it. As for the leak above the tub, they offered to have us relocated to another room because they had to access the room above ours to fix it. We declined because we all wanted to stay in the same building. These issues were not enough to ruin our vacation.

The beds were not the “Sweet Sleeper” beds that you can find in a Sheraton property, but no one in our party thought that they were unreasonable for sleeping. They were very firm, but didn’t interfere with anyone’s sleep. Based on some people’s comments, I expected to be sleeping on rocks.

This place isn't for handicap or senior citizens. Senior citizens will probably fare better than handicap persons because there are carts that can take you from your room to your destination. The carts were always very prompt when we called and we usually gave them a $1 US tip for taking us. This was very helpful for my 72-year-old mother. One shortfall is that unless you were at your room or the spa, you had to go to the hotel lobby to hail a cart, which required walking a distance and up a tall staircase. There were no phones stationed along the way that allowed you to call for the cart. This should be changed. There also were no elevators that I could see so we were lucky to get ground floor rooms. I don't know what wheelchair-bound person would do.

Make sure to take plenty of $1 US bills and plenty of other small bills. I had $50 in $1 bills and I almost ran out near the end. If there weren't more people with me sharing the burden, I would've. They don't appear to be able to give you change. There's no need to change your money into Jamaican dollars. They're essentially worthless and people value other currencies, such as US, Canadian, British. $1 US dollar equals 70 Jamaican dollars. If you try to convert back, you'll get almost nothing.


Nightlife is not this resort's strong point. In fact, it's the weakest. The resort's website boasts of a large casino. But what they don't tell you is that it's not open yet. There is a casino in Montego Bay, called Corral Cliff, but there was basically no way to get to it. Although the hotel claims to be 25 minutes from Montego Bay, it's actually about 45 minutes away. When I expressed my disappointment at the on-site casino not being open and pointed out that their own website says that they have one and there is nothing to indicate that it's not functioning, I got no sympathy from the desk clerk. For more on this matter, see below under Management.

During the day, there are various activities by the main pool, such as Latin dance lessons, yoga, water aerobics, and more. But, these activities are finished by 6 p.m. After that you're basically left to entertain yourself. There's a large theatre that attempts to serve as entertainment, but it would be laughable if they weren't so serious. Most nights there were young people jumping around on stage to music. That's it. It doesn't generate crowds, just some people waiting for something to happen. There is a sports bar near the theater with 2 pool tables, 2 ping pong tables and 2 foos (sp?) ball tables and large screen tv's showing football, basketball, and/or soccer games.


If you have a problem at the resort, you're very likely to leave the resort having the same problem. I found out from the activities staff (the desk clerk didn't know or didn't tell me) that there is a shuttle that goes into Montego Bay and you can then go either to eat/drink at Margaritaville, go to the Coral Cliff casino, and/or go to the nightclub. But, the shuttle only operates on Fridays and Tuesdays. For us, our only chance to go with our whole party was Friday. We signed up for the shuttle during the day, gave them our name and room number, then came back at 9:30 p.m. when the shuttle was supposed to leave. It never came. We asked the bellman, then the guest services person, then the activities person. They tried to locate the activities manager, but he/she never showed up. They told us that the shuttle was cancelled because the nightclub was too crowded. When we asked why they hadn't informed us using the room number we provided, they didn't have an answer. There was another guest in the lobby visibly upset about the same thing. We asked to see a manager again, and Armando Gonzalez Haces, the Food and Beverage Director showed up. We explained our problem, including the resort's claim to have a casino and he said that he would try to get the shuttle rescheduled for the next night and gave us his card and said to check back with him the next day. I did, and the next day he said that he was still working on it and would call me back around noon and would leave a message if I weren’t there. We went out, came back at 6 pm or so and had no message from Mr. Haces. We were walking around the resort that night, spotted Mr. Haces and asked him what happened. He said that he couldn't get the shuttle rescheduled. We asked why he hadn't called us and he said because there was a gas leak at the resort. I asked when and he said about 4 hours ago. I reminded him that he was supposed to have called us some 8 hours before. He was unapologetic. The next day I told my Apple Rep what happened. She contacted management to see if we could get a discounted rate for a taxi or something to get us to the casino, but a manager told her that the taxi service was separate from the resort and they couldn’t do anything. She said that she would locate the general manager, David Caso, so I could talk to him myself. However, she was never able to locate him and neither were we, no matter who we asked.


Most of the staff was very friendly and accommodating, including Leroy at the swim up bar, Lincot, and Andrine (sp?) at the Sports Bar. Those that weren’t friendly or helpful got no tip; those that were, did.


There were many pools of all sizes. The main pool is huge. We had a lot of fun in the pool cruising around in rafts. I strongly suggest that you go to your local pool supply store and pick one up. You won't find one there. However, none of the pools are heated. The water was very cool and un-inviting. The hotel's website boasts of 8 Jacuzzis. My definition of a Jacuzzi includes hot bubbling water. Theirs doesn't. 7 of the Jacuzzis were in the main pool area, but had the same cold water that was in the rest of the pool. But, it was bubbling. The only real "hot" tub is at the spa. The hot tub is open as long as the spa is open (most days 8 p.m.). You don't have to get spa services to use the hot tub. It's out in the open. But, while you're at the spa, you should at least get a massage. Mine was great. I got a 50 minute Swedish massage for $67 US, which included the 16.5% tax. An 80 minute Swedish massage was $126 US plus 16.5% tax.


The Sunset Cove beach is the least rocky and best beach to chill at. There's also a nice restaurant near there called Sunset Cove where you can get tilapia, jerk chicken and more. For more on food, see below.


Their was plenty variety. Even the pickiest eater shouldn't starve. The breakfast buffet is the best and is simply awesome. The variety is unparalleled. They had omelette stations, juice stations, French toast, pancakes, all kinds of cereals, fresh fruits, etc. Definitely the best meal of the day. For lunch and dinner, you could find pasta stations, sometimes fajita stations, etc. One thing that you won't find, however, is authentic Jamaican cuisine. That was very disappointing. The jerk chicken that I had on the property tasted like spicy barbecued chicken.

Take plenty of your favorite snacks. A small bag of Cheetos and Doritos in the gift shop that costs 25 cents in the US, cost $2 US there. No kidding.


We went on the Chukka Jeep Safari tour. All 5 people thought it was great and worth the $73 pp we paid through our Apple Rep. The Negril shopping tour and Rick's Café that we paid $15 pp through our Apple Rep. and Tropical Tours was not worth the money. The trip was too rushed. They gave you 30 minutes here, 45 minutes there, etc. By the time we got to Rick's to see the cliff divers, they told us to head back to the bus as soon as the sun set. By the time we had ordered and received our dinner and took a few bites, the sun had set. I had to cancel my dessert. Instead of this scripted tour to Negril, hire a private taxi. They'll take you for as long as you want and will also show you some hidden treasures that you otherwise would never see. Don't be afraid to go off the property to get a private cab. Cabs are usually waiting right across from the property and you're still in view of the guard booth. But, don't be surprised if the Juta men try to get you to go with them instead. The resort has some sort of exclusive arrangement with Juta Tours to provide taxi service. They're a rip-off. We tried to hire a taxi to Montego Bay. For 4 people, the cost was $160 total. Instead, we went off the property and hired a private taxi. The cost was $70 total and he took us there, stayed with us the whole time and guided and guarded us and returned us about 4 hours later. There was no hurry.

Final Thoughts

If you haven't already chosen this property and you're looking for nightlife at night and relaxation by the day, I think you should look at properties in Montego Bay. That's where all the excitement is. If you're not traveling with children, Sandals is a nice resort. But, if you're a pool bunny and have no interest in shaking it up at night, you'll be in heaven here. But, you should also check out properties in Negril because it’s not isolated like this resort. If you've already booked and are wondering what you're in for, make the most of it by adopting a “no problem, mon” attitude and checking out some excursions with a private taxi. You'll find the best deals and an experience you can't get any other way. Also, don't look too closely at the details. Because we refused to allow our vacation to be ruined and pursued some adventures on our own, by the end of the trip, the bad management had become just a footnote, but still deserving of it's own paragraph in this review.

Feel free to email me with any questions.

  • Liked — The beautiful suites with patios, the huge pool, the friendly staff, and the many dining options
  • Disliked — The lack of entertainment, especially a casino, the isolation, and management's response to issues
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hoboken, NJ
1 review
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2009

My husband and I stayed at the Grand Palladium Montego Bay resort from December 27 - Jan. 1. Overall, being that it is a fairly new resort, we found it was a good resort for the money. We paid $199 pp, per night with all inclusive which is not bad considering we were there over New Year's Eve.

We didn't realize it, but, it was considered the 'windy' season while we were there. Some days were extremely windy and others were mild. However, the wind helped cool us down in the hot sun. Every day was absolutely beautiful!

The grounds are quite large. But, it was nice to be able to walk. Believe me, you are eating so much that you are glad to walk from one place to another. Everyone needs a little exercise. However, if you don't feel like walking they have shuttles that will take you wherever you want to go.
We found the resort to be well kept. They were fixing a few problems here and there, but it wasn't anything that affected us, just a few cosmetic things.

We stayed in Villa 12. Nice location near the lobby, all the restaurants and the main pool. Room was large, plenty of closet space and a safe.

We had no issues with the shower. One tip, point the shower head down and not out towards the door and you won't flood the entire bathroom.

Beds were a little bit hard, but, not that bad. Most all-inclusives we have stayed at had the same hard beds.

Our air conditioning worked perfect, we were actually cold at night and left the sliding door open instead to hear the ocean at night. Just leave one key in the power slot all day and your air will run and cool down the room while you are out.

The only complaint would be that you can here everyone's doors shut, they are very loud. So if you have late night partiers next you, then it could wake you up.

Pools and Beach
We tried the main pool the 1st day and found it to be very "spring break" like. It had loud music, games every hour and lots of teenagers. Not our favorite. But, the pool is really pretty and very large.

The 2nd day we walked over to the Sunset Cove Beach. We expected it to be really nice given the other reviews, but, we were slightly disappointed. The beach had a lot of trees which didn't allow for ample sunbathing. This is the beach where they do all the water sports so there was a lot of activity in the water.

At the end of our 2nd day we decided to walk around a bit to explore and we ended up finding the ADULTS ONLY Pool and beach. This was HEAVEN! It is called the Coral Pool and Beach. It was so quiet and you have your own bar, pool and beach. And it wasn't crowded at all.
We spent every day from then on at this location. You can swim in the ocean, yes, it is a bit rocky to get in, but that is because it is a coral reef. But, there is great snorkling at this beach. We got lounge chairs at the pool that overlooked the ocean, absolutely perfect.

Overall food was OK, we have had better at other resorts. Our favorite restaurant was Pastafarian. The buffets were fine, I would suggest eating a lot at breakfast because it had the best selection. The lunch was ok, not great choices.

We did encounter some other minor issues at the other restaurants. At Lotus House (asian), it took about 45 minutes to get sushi and at the Mexican restaurant their grill was down so they weren't making any fajitas. Oh well, we are not the type to get annoyed, so we just let it slide.

We found the staff to be very nice. Like other reviews, a little tip goes a long way. We made sure to tip our maid as well as any servers we found did a great job as well as the bartender at the Coral pool.

Overall, it was a great getaway for the price. Would we return to this resort, probably not. But, if you need a good vacation at a good price for a short getaway, it would be a good choice.

  • Liked — weather
  • Disliked — lack of beautiful beaches
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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15 reviews 15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2008

Our family of 5 including 3 boys (18,19,22) had a relaxing and fun week at the GP. It was probably the most relaxing family vacation we have had partly because the resort is not near capacity and there were no hassles getting lounge chairs, or towels; also the nature of the Jamaican staff is quite laid back.. We stayed on the Jamaica side in villa 11 which was conveniently situated near the infinity pool, lobby and restaurants. Both rooms had beautiful ocean views as do many of the rooms. Rooms were large (smallest available is junior suite) and equipped with a flat screen tv with satellite , large balcony, double jacuzzi tub and marble shower. Floors are marble throughout unit. The resort overall is very clean and well kept and because it is laid out along the oceanfront , views are spectacular from a lot of locations. Lots of facilities to take advantage of including 3 tennis courts, a soccer field, basketball court, archery, mini golf, spa and gym with free use of hot steam room and dry sauna. There are 4 + pools including the huge infinity pool which ends and the oceanfront begins. The pool water temperature is on the cool side but once you get in it is very refreshing. There are approximately 13 bars throughout the complex which serve great drinks and an infinite variety of them. Miss Lou's beside the infinity bar has the premium quality liquour including Red Stripe. There is a huge sports bar with 2 ping pong tables, 2 pool tables, and 2 fooseball tables as well as a large screen tv. There is also a large discotecque. The infinity bar has live entertainment (ie. different bands every night) which begin after the theatre show. The house entertainment is mediocre as I have found in most all-inclusive resorts- the audience participation nights very fun, and there was also a poker night and karaoke night. I liked the variety of beaches as it gave us a change as opposed to going to the same location each day. Snorkeling was quite good- we brought a couple of sets of snorkels and water shoes- we snorkeled at all three locations. Sunset Cove houses all the boats and we enjoyed using the single and double kayaks, pedal boats, sailboats and wind surfers. The resort has a limited number of snorkels as well. Use is free and there wasn't a problem getting a boat. The kids club looked organized and had a nice itinerary but we are past that stage. I found the guests to be very pleasant-the makeup this week was largely Canadian(escaping the cold, wintery weather then American, British, German and some eastern European while we were there ( Dec.20-27th). The Activity staff were fun and if you wanted to partake there were lots of activities around the pool area. I thought the food was excellent for an all inclusive- no reservations were necessary for the specialty restaurants. The resort did not communicate well which restaurants were open on which nights or what the theme nights were at the Buffet. Good choices at the restaurant included the filet mignon and coconut shrimp at the Creole Restaurant (also the margaritas); the fifth avenue steak or rib steak at Bubbas ( ribs were fair); the lamb shish kebab , tandoori chicken and butter chicken at the Indian....We had a really good dinner at the Asian night at the buffet and don't miss the Gala Night which I think is Wednesday. Breakfast buffet at the Negril was excellent. Lunches were okay at the Blue Lagoon. I enjoyed the jerk chicken for lunch at the restaurant by Sunset Cove- the view is great from there as well.
There are inexpensive trips to the beach at Negril or shopping trips available (around $15 per person)if you want to go off the complex. Also Tuesday evening there is free transportation to Margueritaville in Montego Bay 10:30 pm-1:30pm which is run by the activity staff.
We all had a fantastic time. The weather was unbelievable and because of the breeze from the water, the sun was easy to take. Also there are lots of palapas by the pool and Sunset Cove. I liked the fact that the resort is isolated eliminating some of the issues along the more public beaches. I felt the resort was very safe. I left all my valuables in the room safe for the week and not having to carry a purse was a bonus.
There are some issues with the construction of the place- eg. plumbing , interlock, etc but we found that maintenance was very prompt and polite whenever we had a problem. It is new and the management seems to be working things out.
It is a beautiful property with nice landscaping and picturesque views.
The resort is very large and employs a very large number of staff. We found most to be warm, friendly, and professional. You can't expect every employee to be outstanding.
I would highly recommend this resort for easy going people who are not looking for perfection. The value is great- enjoy it before it gets expensive and more crowded. It's Jamaica- go with the flow.

  • Liked — amount of waterfront
  • Disliked — lack of communication re: restaurant nightly options
  • Stayed December 2008
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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1 review
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2008

We stayed at the Grand Palladium on Dec. 14th - 21st. Can I just begin by saying it was such a beautiful venue. When our bus brought us to the resort from the airport, I was blown away when we arrived - It was breath taking, so beautiful. We were the only ones on our bus, staying at this resort, and to prove how beautiful this place was, everyone on the bus was also blown away, they were asking us what is this place, and how did we find out about it.

When we were waiting to check in, we were greeted with drinks. Check in, was a breeze, no problems at all, and it only took about 5 min. They also upgraded us to a suite, complimentary. We were celebrating our 10th anniversary.

I really wanted an ocean view, but we didn't get one, but the suite was AMAZING! We had 2 balcony's one in the seating area, which had a love seat, 2 chairs, a flat screen TV etc... the other balcony was by our bedroom. The view was still really nice. The rooms were SOOOOOOOOOO nice, VERY clean, marble everywhere! What was really nice about the balcony's one was covered, so if it rained, we could still sit out there, the other wasn't covered so we were able to tan if we felt like staying in our rooms.

I noticed in a few reviews that ppl. complained about running out of water. We didn't run out of hot water once, and if I can confess, we ran the water for A LONG time! After a long shower, we even filled up the jacuzzi, and still didn't run out of hot water. Everyday no problems with the water, the water pressure was also awesome!

Our cleaners were great! They refilled most things everyday, we had to ask once for wash cloths though, b/c they throw them out everyday. You may want to bring your own wash cloths, it may just depend on your cleaner though.

The beaches were BEAUTIFUL! As mentioned by many, yes a few of the beaches are a bit rocky, but they are working on them, daily. Every evening, they were out there working on it, I am sure it will take some time. Sunset Cove, is perfect! That's were most ppl. hung out, but I preferred the beach by the main area, I can't remember the name of it though. It was less busy, and most ppl. at this particular beach, were just relaxing, tanning, sleeping, reading. Sunset Cove is where they have all the water activities.

Getting to Sunset Cove is not a long walk, its a nice walk, your in Jamaica man, relax, and enjoy the walk, its so beautiful!

They have daily activities by the main pool, the workers were a bit annoying I have to admit, I know they are just doing their job, but when they had an event, for example, salsa dancing, they would kind of harrasse me, to join, I had to tell them like 4 times, I didn't want to...that part was annoying for me,,,but I just ignored them after awhile, so beware if you are relaxing by the main pool area - LOL!

Food - was awesome! I have a very weak stomach, I get sick very easily, and honestly, I did not get sick once! I didn't try the Indian restaurant or the Mexican, but I heard a lot of great reviews. The two buffets places were great! Negril, and the Blue Lagoon. We usually ate at the Blue Lagoon for lunch, Negril we ate for breakfast, and dinner I think twice. My favourite restaurant was Xamica, GREAT JA food, and the Asian restaurant, was AWESOME! Keep in mind not every restaurant is open every evening, therefore resulting, somenights taking a while to get into a restaurant. I found if we waited to eat b/w 7:30 - 8:00, it was a bit of a wait. No complaints though, we met awesome ppl while we were waiting, and again, just got to enjoy the beautiful scenery.

Night shows - didn't really like, kind of chessey, one night was awesome, but they still need some work. Up in the bar though, they had a live band their each night, and they were pretty good.

Overall, we had an amazing time, it was like a dream come true!

Also, check out was easy too, no problems. Our customer service rep. was great!

Oh, we did the Negril tour for $15.00 per person, we had a great time, just look out for the second stop, everyone will be wanting you to buy their stuff, it was bit overwhelming. We ended off at Rick's Cafe, to enjoy the sunset...was beautiful!

Oh ya, please also bring with you change...its hard to get change on the resort, especially if you want to tip.

I would also reccommend to take the bus to the resort from the airport, not a taxi, its cheaper, and the service was great!

The resort was in FAB. condition. Looked AWESOME! BREATHTAKING, and was very clean. You may find a few weird looking insects, but there is only so much that can be done, your in Jamaica!

I will definitley come back to this resort!

Hope this review helps!

  • Liked — Everything
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbus, Ohio
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2008

Dec 11 – Dec 18 Grand Palladium Jamaica

Let me preface the review by saying we paid a cheap $90/each per night ($180 total/night) and read all the mixed reviews so our expectations were minimal. This is definitely not a 5 star resort (except for the food!). Next time, I would stay in Negril at a different resort.

We checked in on the Grand Palladium side of the resort and were greeted with a great rum punch but not a lot of friendliness. We were shuttled to our room (#2606) via golf cart and given a personal tour of our 1 bedroom suite and how to work the lights, safe etc. At first glance, the room was impressive, upon further inspection, the workmanship was not up to par BUT keeping in mind, the Jamaicans have different standards of quality and minimal tools. Villa 26 was a GREAT location because we were close to the main building, theatre, restaurants and main pool. We had a lovely view of Las Brisas Beach and two patios; one off the living room overlooking the beach and one off the bedroom viewing a pathway.
At first, we had only a few issues with the room: the safe didn’t work and we had to call maintenance to repair it; they did come immediately and took it apart and fixed it. However, later in the week, the safe continued to not lock and my husband found a way to rig it so it would lock. We also had to call maintenance because our shower didn’t drain and overflowed onto the bathroom floor (even when showering quickly). Then, about 2 days into the trip, we constantly had to walk through about an inch of water to get to our room, apparently the room next door had MAJOR plumbing issues and continually flooded leaking out under the door into the hallway and onto the patio next door(which had green mold on it). We asked for this to be mopped up multiple times but the front desk staff seemed indifferent to the fact that the room was continually flooding into the hallway.
We had two mini bars in the room, but the staff stocked only the living room bar with 1 coke, 1 diet coke, 1 sprite, 1 orange, 2 waters and 2 cheap beers (Real Rock). I simply moved the coke and diet coke from the living room fridge to the bedroom fridge to get them restocked. My thought is if you have two refrigerators, they both should be stocked. The beer, Real Rock, is a local CHEAP beer; I couldn’t drink it because it was awful. We did have Red Stripe, another local beer, when going off the property and loved it.
The bed looked pretty but the bed was VERY HARD. We woke up sore from the hard bed so we tried sleeping on our pull out sofa in the living room the next night, which was softer. However, the sofa in the living room was near the lobby of the villa where you could hear some local bug “chirping” all night (sort of like a cricket but it sounded like a big trucking does, beeping when in reverse). I’m glad I read this on previous reviews and had my earplugs! We went to the front desk to ask if they had any kind of foam or down mattress pad to “soften” the bed and they said they would try t find a solution; but nothing was ever changed or added. We finally got smart on night 4 and took the chair pads from our patio loungers (not all rooms have loungers though) and put them under the fitted sheet to soften the bed! Also, the linens on the bed were VERY CHEAP. They were a poly/cotton blend and very scratchy, not the heavenly bed from the Hampton or what you’d expect at a 5 star, more like Red Roof or Motel 6 linens.
The food was FABULOUS and definitely 5 star. Despite all the other issues, the food was worth the nightly rate. For breakfast, you could go to the omelet station and have an omelet made to order and, if requested, they would also make a cappuccino or mimosa! For dinner we tried everything except the Indian and Asian. Every place was exceptional and the service was great. We had salads, pastas, conch fritters, crab cakes, filet mignon, etc and loved the presentation and exceptional quality. Any time we got a drink at the bar; they were wonderful and definitely did not skimp on the liquor (Rum Punch, Bahama Mama, Yellow Bird, Champagne, etc).
The first day, we walked the entire resort (3/4 mile end to end). Definitely use the map and find all the pools (5), the beaches (3), the restaurants (10 including buffets), and entertainment options. The beaches are not what you would expect of the Caribbean. If you’re a beach person, I definitely would look to stay in Negril because the sand is much finer, the water much cleaner. We loved the relaxation pool on the Palladium side because it was the least populated (and Dwayne, the pool man was great). The best beach was at sunset cove where you can also use non-motor watercraft for free.
We looked into some of the tours offered by the resort but we don’t like crowds. In discussing my desire to see “local” Jamaica with Dwayne (pool man at the relaxation pool) he indicated he had a taxi driver friend (Joe Cool) who would give us the same rate as the hotel tours but more personal service. Honestly, I was a little leery of leaving the resort based on the crime and murder rate in Jamaica, especially with a stranger. However, this proved to be the best part of the vacation but I would be VERY CAUTIOUS as to who you travel with and always be very cognoscente of your possessions and surroundings. We traveled to Mayfield Falls 1 day ($120 for the Joe Cool and the taxi , approx. 1+ hour drive each way, $30 for the Falls entry fee, $30 tip for our personal guide) and we were the only tourists there which was awesome. The next day we went to Negril (7 mile beach, local souvenir shop, and Rick’s Café—a MUST SEE) for $60 round trip. Joe not only showed us “local Jamaica” he also answered our questions and protected us form any potential crime. The locals’ network and Dwayne got a % of Joe’s fare; the souvenir shop owner paid Joe a % of our purchases, etc. Joe can usually be found by going out to the main gate security and asking if Joe Cool is around, tell him Jennifer and Bob from Ohio recommended him!
Red Stripe and the premium liquors are at Miss Lou's next to infinity bar. In addition, games and books can be found here. I left a book I finished reading and took a new one. Most of the staff was friendly but I wouldn’t say they are really friendly, some even seemed indifferent. Every time we ordered a drink at the bar we gave $1, for breakfast we left $1 (buffet self serve) and for dinner we always left $5 (full service). For room service we left $5 -- do this daily and you’ll get extra towels, better cleaning and towel animals with flowers on the bed. The average wage in Jamaica is $60 USD/week <according to the locals we talked to> so every dollar is appreciated. I know it’s all inclusive, but tips show appreciation and some of the staff are excellent and all who do something for you deserve a little extra appreciation. Bring a lot of $1 and $5 bills. Additionally, bring a lot of cash (vs. credit) to pay for services not arranged through the resort. The theatre was mediocre (dancing/singing) and the Karaoke was fun to watch.
We went to the spa on day one to scope it out. You can use the pools, sauna and steam room for NO ADDITIONAL FEE and without booking a service. The menu of services and prices at the spa were okay. We did book couples massage (though not on the menu of services, you just double the one person massage price). We paid $250 for the massage service+ $25 tip to each masseuse = $300 spent at the spa. The spa was not run very well and was not even close to 5 star service but both of the masseuses we had were very good. Next time, I would save my $300 and use it for more tours.

Overall, a great deal for $180/night all inclusive. If I had paid more, I would have been VERY disappointed in the claim of 5 stars. They are trying but have a long way to go in quality of rooms, pools, grounds, entertainment and service. Today, I would rate the resort a 3 star. Also, it is interesting to note that the resort and beaches were man-made and built on an old cemetery, which was not discovered until they began excavation.

  • Liked — The food was FABULAOUS! The drinks were strong and delicious.
  • Disliked — The bed/linens, the beaches, the location to other activities outside the compound, the overall quality
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa

Address: The Point, Lucea, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Hanover Parish > Lucea
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Lucea
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 544
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Also Known As:
Grand Palladium Jamaica Hotel Lucea
Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort And Spa
Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa Lucea

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