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“A good holiday”

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Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort and Private Island
Ranked #6 of 63 Hotels in Montego Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 7, 2005

Sometimes you read reviews and wonder if everyone is talking about the same place. I guess its a matter of personal expectations and priorities you place on different aspects of a vacation,

We have just returned and had a great time. You can always find fault - e.g. the beach chairs are a bit old....

but the staff were very friendly and obliging, the food good and the bars were only annoyingly busy at peak times. The beaches are small but the offshore island and sand-bar is interesting and good for a walk at low tide. The hotel is quieter than many all-inclusives so if you want lots of night-life go elsewhere. My personal opinion is that people who have booked should not be concerned

  • Stayed: March 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
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6  Thank PaulEngland8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,434 - 5,440 of 5,656 reviews

A TripAdvisor Member
st. louis
112
Reviewed March 7, 2005

My husband and I just returned yesterday after being with friends for a week at this resort (Feb 28- Mar7). When we arrived we were escorted to our rooms which were at best average. The furniture was very old and the bathrooms YUK they were just gross in general. The beach this is my favorite part, please do not go by the pictures in the book, there is basically little to no beach or swimming area, and the island only go over there if you would like to see naked people. We did visit the sandals montego bay one day and it was better. On the flip side, the staff was wonderful and more than helpful and the food was good, however it was very hard to get into several restuarants. Although we will never go back to this sandals we will look into others in the future. This was our third trip attending a sandals resort. Please do not go here if the beach is what you are looking for because it is basically a swimming hole.

  • Stayed: February 2005
    • Value
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12  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2005

My Husband and I just returned from the "Royal" yesterday. This was our first visit to Jamaica and our first experience with Sandals. We will never go to another Sandals resort. Our trip started out with the flight being overbooked so we got bumped from Air Jamaica to a United flight out of Chicago, which had a 2 hour delay, which meant that instead of getting to Jamaica at 11:00 am , we arrived in Jamaica at 2:30. Once we got through immigration ( a 1 1/2 hour wait) within 15 minutes we were in a taxi and on our way to the "Royal". Upon entering the resort, we took one look at the building and knew it was going to be along week. The service was ok, the room - with a view of the beach - was clean, but nothing fancy. The food overall was ok- nothing to rave about. We did notice that many of the people at the resort were returning guests. So many times that the staff greeted them with hugs. We were very dissapointed in the beach- very small and the furntire was dirty and broken, the pools were very small and very cold. The weather was nice, in the 80's with rain 2 of the nights. My husband and I are used to staying in Marriott's, Hyatt's, Fairmonts and other 4/5 star hotels- this resort doesn't come close. If you are looking to go to somewhere to be pampered- don't go here. If you are looking to sit at a bar and drink all day then go. We feel we did not get our money's worth and will not recommend Sandals to anyone.

  • Stayed: February 2005
    • Value
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18  Thank Irene C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2005

I just read a review of a couple who checked out early because they weren't happy. I think we took over your room. We arrived on February 24th and complained right away about our room (#52). Our veiw was a brick wall and if you looked over it, you saw the roof of one of the restaurants. We managed to get a room in the Kensington Building, thanks to whoever cancelled. Beautiful room with a pool and whirlpool. I read about the small beaches. OMG, I didn't realize how small they actually were. The only night I enjoyed my meal was at the Thai Restaurant on the offshore island. We have travelled to many places in the last 6 years, but never to a Sandals resort. We couldn't wait, thinking this was going to be the best. NOT. I brought my kids to Cuba last year to a 4 star resort and it had better food, bigger pool, nicer beaches, more activities etc. This doesn't mean we will never go to a Sandals resort again. We know that there are better ones out there and we will do out homework before we head out next year. Sandals was kind enough to give us a free week because we were suppose to go to the new Whitehouse resort in jamaica, but it wasn't ready on time. Thank you Sandals. Thank god we were with a bunch of friends and had our own fun because the resort was, like I said, just okay. If you want to see more photos, just email me and let me know.

14  Thank natamour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 2, 2005

We have just returned from Jamaica. We decided to try Sandals, we've stayed at Sandals in the past(5 years ago) and have never encountered any disappointments. Well, this was just one big disappointment!!!!!
The room was just renovated. We were in a suite. The room was okay, clean. The pools were a huge let down. My pool at home is bigger than the pool they had there. The pools were not clean, there was this film in both pools,yuck!!!!! The pool furniture was cheap wal mart furniture and dirty and some were broken. The restaurants were a joke. We checked out and went to an upscale place. The grounds and settings reminded me of a glorified motor lodge. I would be doing an injustice as to not tell you the truth of this resort. We are used to traveling, our type of vacations we usually stay at The Ritz and places like that. You figure with a Sandals how could you go wrong. Unfortunately, we did. I will never visit another Sandals after this past let down.

The staff was courteous. When we were checking out the manager said we were in the best room they had and sorry, he even agreed this place wasn't what we were used to. As for the beach, what beach? That was a joke, there was this huge sand bar. There wasn't any beverage service at the beach or pool. When I go on vacation I expect to be pampered. If that's what you looking for then this is not the place to go. I agree with one of the other user reviews and yes, the brochure and pictures lied. The resort looked nothing like their pictures. Do your homework and research thoroughly before choosing this place. Sandals has completely gone down hill!!!

  • Stayed: January 2005
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19  Thank NickyPeach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2005

We have just returned from The Royal Caribbean, Montego Bay. Setting aside the appalling service provided by Air Jamaica - 8 hour delay going; 7 coming back - we generally enjoyed our stay. All the staff were lovely, friendly and enjoyed a joke. Generally cleanliness was of a high order and the facilities seemed good.
A couple of down sides: the catering and menus seemed a little tired and could do with some revision. We got the feeling that they were seldom changed and lacked imagination. The piano in the piano bar was extremely underused and not the focal point for get=togethers in the evenings.
Didn't enjoy our meal at Tokyo Joe's [Sandals Mo Bay] and didn't bother returning to this hotel situated beside the airport runway!
Overall, loved Jamaica but can't wee us returning because of terrible prospects for flights there Air Jaimaca looks to be in serious trouble.
Andy & Lynne Clayton
Surrey UK

  • Stayed: February 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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7  Thank Andiseas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
393
Reviewed February 27, 2005

Just returned from Jamaica on February 27. We booked Royal Carib. from the 24-27th. We left the resort on the 25th and found a different hotel. The only thing I could think of someone giving this resort a high rating, is that they are on their first trip, or, they have always gone to this type of hotel and don't know the difference. To put it mildly, this place is a complete dump. Do not go by the pictures that you see through the Sandal's, they are completely doctored. From the moment we drove up to the main building we knew what we were in for. I have to say, that we travel quite extensively through the carribean, and usual stay at a Ritz, Four Seasons, Hyatt and the like. We settled on this place based on the fact it was a quick getaway and the pictures looked inviting and we wanted to try something new.

This place is a glorified travel motel in Jamaica. Firstly, the building, the furnishings and the landscape was in complete state of needed repair and/or replacement. There is ABSOLUTELY NO BEACH..NONE, the pictures are very deceiving. The offshore island is really not offshore..there is actually a sand bar that you could literally walk on to get to the island. The furniture was falling apart, and the landscaping looked like nobody has attended to it in month's. They have 2 pools, and they were tiny. I am talking that the average person has a larger pool in their backyard, and there was absolutely no place to sit.

I am not trying to sound like a snob, and I know that many of those reading this do not have the capacity to go to a more exclusive resort, so I direct my feelings to those of you who are more apt to visit a true 4/5 star resort. If you are this type of traveller..DO NOT GO HERE!!!! We were so disappointed that we left the day after we arrived and moved to the Round Hill resort. If we were not able to get another resort, we were prepared to fly home...this is how bad this place is.

The food was absolutely horrible. It was almost impossible to get a drink as they only had a couple of small bars with a couple of bartenders, and literally 20 people deep to get served. Their is NO poolside bar service..no waitress's to get you a drink.

I equate this resort to a kids camp type facility. Once again, if you have never been away, or,you are familar with this type of resort..I am sure you will have a good time. If you are a traveller with high expectations..stay away..you will not be happy at all.

When we checked out the next day, we spoke to the manager (who was very nice), and he agreed with us that if you are a person who enjoys a better level of service and accommodations this resort is not for you.

I will say..the staff were all very friendly...were smiling the whole time, and always asked how you were doing. We had a beachfront suite, which was also very nice. We saw the lower tier rooms and they were horrible.

22  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort and Private Island

Address: Mahoe Bay, Montego Bay 167, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint James Parish > Montego Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#5 Romantic Hotel in Montego Bay
#6 Luxury Hotel in Montego Bay
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Montego Bay
#7 Business Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range: $488 - $1,274 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort and Private Island 4*
Number of rooms: 197
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•7 exquisite dining options, with world-class culinary cuisines.•Only Jamaican resort with a private offshore island, housing an authentic Thai restaurant.•Magnificent, swim-up crystal lagoon suites.•24 hour room service as a part of our concierge service.•English pub offering an authentic pub dining experience.•Voted Sandals “World's Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row.•Voted “Caribbean's Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Royal Caribbean Hotel Montego Bay
Sandals Royal Caribbean Montego Bay
Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort Jamaica
Sandal Royal Caribbean

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