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“Holy Crap! AWESOME.. where to start?!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Sandals Montego Bay

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Sandals Montego Bay
Ranked #9 of 61 Hotels in Montego Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Hastings, Michigan
Level Contributor
67 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Holy Crap! AWESOME.. where to start?!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 31, 2014

Hubby & I stayed at Sandals MoBay Jan 18-25, 2014. It was AMAZING!!! Even though the weather didn't want to cooperate & it rained EVERY day we were there.. it was AWESOME! Any vacation is truly what YOU make of it. We had our ups & downs but we rolled with the punches and made it an amazing trip! Everyone there is so polite and appreciative. So where to start for those OCD people like me...

Keep in mind, I booked ALL our travel plans and was in contact with the resort directly 3 months, 1 month & 1 week to confirm all arrangements and everything was spot on.

AIRPORT ARRIVAL:
Booked Club MoBay for BOTH arrival & departure bundle. Arriving Saturday at 2:25PM, the lines were +4 hours. With Club MoBay we were greeted as we exited the plane and escorted to the front of the line for customs/immigration/security. From the time we landed to the time we were on our bus to SMB was less than 1 hour! For $80per person, this amenity is worth its weight in GOLD! We will NEVER travel to MoBay without this service again. It’s worth the risk… if I had had to wait in those lines… I would have lost my mind & temper in short order.

We got to the hotel in a matter of moments. This property is RIGHT behind the airport. ANYONE that does not know that and complains about the airplane noise is just stupid in my opinion. Bus shuttle was clean and fresh.

PROPERTY ARRIVAL:
Upon arriving at the property, all baggage was unloaded and a moment of chaos ensued. It was quickly sorted and everyone was on their way (like 5 minutes literally). I booked the Oceanfront Honeymoon Club Level Veranda Room and asked for a QUITE room. Since we have 5 kids and my husband travels 95% of the year, we don't get much time alone together. Club service was "okay" at best. We usually felt like we were a bother to them. Oh well, we just stayed out of the "Club" room. We were greeted at the bus with cool clothes but offered only rum punch in the Club Room. We were never offered anything else from our "Club" level booking. HINT: If I booked again, I would get just a standard room and skip the so called pluses... really no need.

ROOM:
When I booked I specifically requested a “quite room away from all the action”. We got room 301 that was RIGHT next to Cricketer, Lobby, and Tokyo Joes. It was LOUD until 10:30PM and then quieter but still noise until about midnight. Concierge had advised their error in our room and it took them 3 days before they got it right. So our first 3 days were living out of our suit cases because EVERY day they kept telling me we were going to be moved. Each day we were not!

Finally on day 3 we were moved to room 320. BOTH rooms were the exact same as far as size, amenities and such. The view from 320 was better but both were acceptable. We were not there to hang out in the room.

Huge thanks to Telesha (sorry I think my spelling is off) who was our room attendant for room 320. She always made sure we had everything we needed and if we didn’t she went above and beyond with her cheerfulness to make sure she left us with a smile on. She was VERY sweet! We quickly forgot about the “other” room.

Amenities: The “amenity kit” is 3oz tubes of shampoo, conditioner, body wash and lotion from the Red Lane Spa. All are nice but I prefer my own. All other amenities are as listed on the web.

DINING:
Okay, basically 3 of the 5 eatery options require reservations (Cucina, Oleander & Tokyo Joes; Bay Side & Stew Fish do not). This property holds about 2,000+ guests if maxed out. In Cucina Romana there are only about 50 seats total (very small which adds to the obeisance of the dining experience). Tokyo Joes - we did not eat at but about another 50 seats. Oleander has another 50 seats. So you can see why they book fast. We were able to eat at each but could not pick and choose easily. We basically took what they had available. We did not eat at StewFish as hubby & I are not big sea food fans. As for the Cricketer, Dino's, Mariner's, they are GREAT!! Bayside was okay, but not our favorite.

Cucina Romana’s: Okay this place, to say its BELLISSIMO is an understatement! From the greeter (sorry, cannot remember his name. We'll call him Mr. Tall, Dark & Handsome - which hubby laughs at me about!) remembering our seating preference to the servers remembering our drinks, they are truly there to make your dining experience amazing. The Bruschetta was perfect! The Florentina alla Griglia (seasoned striploin steak) was SO tender you could literally cut it with a fork. Linguine Alfredo was fantastic and you can have with chicken or shrimp, or both if you ask. Dessert was ALL of them! The Crostata di ricotta e visciole was great (watch out for the pits!), apple pie dumpling was okay, but the home run was the Tiramisu! We are NOT coffee drinkers and were a bit apprehensive about this one but it ended up being our favorite!

This restaurant is ONLY open Mon, Wed, Fri, so remember that. They also have breakfast those days to and it’s AMAZING! We went in on Wednesday and we were the ONLY two people there the entire morning (we were there for about an hour & a half enjoying the food and view). The view from up there is indescribably beautiful! Even when it rains!!

There are two flights of stairs going up, no elevator, so plan accordingly.

Oleander: This is a white gloved dining experience and VERY dimly lit so take your flashlight if you want to be able to see anything. We were not super fond of the menu selections but we had decided to try new things since it’s all inclusive. Hubby had Jamaican Coffee rubbed NY Sirloin and I had the Seared Stuffed Chicken Breast. Both were MUCH better than we thought they would be. For dessert we had the Pineapple up-side down and Plantain tart. Service was super slow but it gave us time to talk about our day and lay plans for tomorrow. Overall it was very pleasant. This is at ground level behind the Bay Side.

Bay Side (dinner): This is a sit down menu option and NOT buffet (breakfast & lunch are buffet). Hubby had Chicken Cordon Bleu, I had the Duck a’la Orange. Both were okay but nothing outstanding. Desserts consisted of Crêpe Suzette - Sweet Crêpe, Mango Slices, Orange Segments, Grand Marnier, Vanilla Ice Cream; La Glace - Ice Cream, Tuile, Tropical Fruit Compote; Crème Caramel - Velvety Caramel-Scented Egg Custard (this is NOT Crème Brulee – much thicker and not as sweet); Mousse au Chocolat - Rich Chocolate Mousse, Raspberry Coulis; Tarte aux Poires - Traditional Pear Tart, Vanilla Ice Cream. We tried ALL 5 of the desserts and they were ALL AMAZING!!! Keep in mind the portions here are MUCH smaller than in America but they were PERFECT! There was just enough for hubby & I to share and taste them all and not be stuffed.

Cricketer: This pub style eatery is adorable and they have sports on! Their burgers are HUGE! If you leave here hungry, WOW you eat a lot! LOL! For appetizer, the “Bouncer” is awesome! It is spiced potato wedges with warm stilton cheese fondue and one is NOT enough for two! We also had the Googly (chicken wings), BBQ Pork Chops, fat fries, Sticky Toffee Pudding (more of a bread than pudding), and Chocolate Brownie (amazing!). They open at 4PM every day.

Dino’s & Mariners: Both of these are also great. Basically, if you are hungry here it’s your own fault and quit being so picky! We would order and if they were not busy they would bring it to our beach chair! Cannot get much better then that!

BARS:
Okay, there are drinks EVERYWHERE! If your hand is empty, either you want it that way or it’s your own fault! Workers are CONSTANTLY coming around asking if you need anything. Our favorite was a gentleman on the beach (sorry don’t remember his name) but he always wore a huge straw hat & snow flake sunglasses. Which we thought was hysterical since we are from Michigan and getting record cold & snow this year! We never went to the piano bar, it appeared to be the area for the 20-something crowed and we wanted more relaxed and quite atmosphere. The main lobby bar was always the hopping place. You MUST ask Clayton to make his special drink – Fantastic!
The drinks to try: Dirty Banana, Smile, American Flag, Miami Vise, MoBay Slammer, Caribbean Sky, Purple Rain, Bob Marley Shot, Pistachio Shot and the ever flowing Rum Punch! The Dirty Banana was my favorite and get it Extra Dirty!!

WATER ACTIVITIES:
Okay so here was our down side to the trip… weather! It rained about 90% of the time. When it wasn’t raining the winds were so high that in our 8 days we were on the water 2 afternoons. I was able to snorkel once each of those 2 days. The glass bottom boat once and that was it. There are so many people and limited spots for the water so make sure you book early and often. If they cancel, you are not out. That was our mistake!

They have snorkeling, paddle boards, wake boards, water ski, tubing, scuba, hobbi cats, and kayaks. The pools were WAY cool! Once you got used to it, it was okay. I only went in once because it was only warm & sunny one day we were there and not that hot at any point. In fact a couple of days it was chilly by Jamaica standards.

LAND ACTIVITIES:
There is a life size chess board, shuffle board, beach volleyball and basketball. We did not use any of these but they were utilized, even in the rain!

PLAYMAKERS:
Okay, this group might be towards the bottom of the list but they are the NUMBER ONE REASON WE WILL RETURN!!!! To say that Michael, Kendria, Ruth-Ann, Shelline, Shauna-Kay and Mickel were ABSOLUETLY AMAZING, ENERGIZED AND HANDS DOWN THE BEST is an understatement in every sense of the word! They are “on” from sun up to sun down. They make even exercising fun! How can Reggae Dancing NOT be fun with Michael and Kendria!? And YES it’s exercise if you are used to sitting at a computer 10-12 hrs a day or driving a truck! Hubby & I were the poster children for “crazy couple” of the week! We figure no one knew us so why not have fun!? By the end of the week, EVERYONE knew us! We had a BLAST! I had NO CLUE how to dance and Michael showed hubby & I how to dance in short order. Kendria & Shauna-Kay showed me how to shake my money maker more than I already knew! Sandals MoBay has the MOST AMAZING GROUP OF PLAYMAKERS and hubby and I can NOT say enough good about them. With the weather, they ensured all the guests had things to do and activities. If you just sat there like a bump on a log, it was your own fault for not playing!

There are also trinkets you can win by participating. One game (one we actually won!) even gave out $20 spa credit and a 1L bottle of Rum! What’s not to love?

SPA:
We did a couples massage and it was perfect! Hubby had a bad sun burn and they were very careful and recommended some product that helped it heal much quicker (he got burnt day one and massage was day 7)! We didn’t feel pressured to purchase products even though they did offer a large variety of stuff. We just politely declined. With my rewards and prize Love Check, we spent $168 in the spa total for couples massage and some products!

PHOTO SHOP:
While they are pricy, they are WELL worth it for those “couple” shots you just cannot get yourself. We did buy a package and not sorry we did. We spent $235 for a mid-line package. We used Omar and he was great!

GIFT SHOP:
They have basically everything you need/want and offer daily specials. However, we found their rum prices WAY high compared to the airport! Just saying! We spent $200 on ALL our souvenirs for lots of people and the two gals in there (sorry didn’t get their names) were great!

OTHER ITEMS:
NO TIPPING and NO ONE treated us any different. In fact, the workers pointed out that they get points for customers posting on Trip Advisor and the Sandals survey (which I have done both now) with their feedback. So those that insist they should be allowed to tip, while I agree, please respect the property policy! Don’t risk their job to clear your conscience!

ROOM SERVICE: this level room has room service and it is very good. We used it only a couple of times and the food was always HOT!

PROPERTY DEPARTURE:
The departure process was quick and easy, they have it down. Nothing really to say on it. They will leave an envelope on your door with your bill if you do not settle up the night before. We chose to settle up the night before departure so not to be surprised on our last morning. We also did room service our last morning so we could have more time for packing our room up.

AIRPORT DEPARTURE:
At the airport, be ready for complete chaos! However, if you are polite and firm, the Red Caps will leave you alone. We are VERY possessive of our baggage and prefer to handle it ourselves. They were fine to move along to someone that wanted the help. Again we had the Club MoBay package for departure. After we checked in with our Airline and got our checked luggage handled, we went to the front of the lines again. We were through and sitting waiting for our plane within 30 minutes! The “lounge” for Club MoBay left something to be desired but the “pass” in lines was still worth it.

If you plan to eat at the airport… Wendy’s for Hubby and I was $27 for 2 basic Wendy’s Singles meals. Seemed all “couples” orders were about $30. So make sure you have cash (US dollars)!

SANDALS RECOMMENDATIONS:
1. Room service – dishes be picked up more promptly. A few days dishes sat out from dinner the night before for the ENTIRE day (with local cats, it would help keep them off the property; but they were friendly felines so we had no issues with them). We choose to leave our dishes on the balcony to avoid critters outside.
2. Water sports – It would be nice to have more of the Paddle Boards or “shore” snorkeling. It would allow more people to enjoy water items more.
3. Establish a posted time limit on “saved” beach loungers. Several times we were near saved chairs and NO ONE ever used them! We finally just used them.
4. It would be nice if the prices were a bit less expensive. We would definately be back sooner if it was. With room, extras - spa, pictures, gifts, we spent about $4,000 (not counting air fare or Club MoBay).

OVERALL, I GIVE THIS PLACE A 5 STAR BECAUSE IT WAS BETTER THAN WE EXPECTED AND THE CRAPPY WEATHER JUST ADDED TO EXPERIENCES WE MIGHT NOT HAVE HAD! Thank you to everyone and again, special thanks to Michael, Kendria, Ruth-Ann, Shelline, Shauna-Kay and Mickel; we love you guys!!!

Sonia & Randy – The Crazy Couple!

Room Tip: Really no bad rooms from what we heard. It's just what you prefer. Let them know BEFORE you get...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Sonia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, February 1, 2014
We're so happy to read that you had a great vacation with us at Sandals Montego. We love to hear our guests boast about our luxurious accommodations, delectable dining options, beautiful property and the wonderful personality and hospitality of our staff. Thank you for your review. It was a pleasure creating such a memorable experience for you.

We can't wait to welcome you back in the near future!
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Wapello, Iowa
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 29, 2014

My husband and I attended a wedding at the Sandals Montego Bay Resort ~ right from the start to the very end of our stay was wonderful. The food as awesome ( get reservations early if you plan on eating at one of the three restaurants that take reservations ) Drinks even more awesome ~ I can't tell you how over the top the people that worked there were ~ everyone was so kind and helpful ~ My husband was able to play in on the piano bar and is still talking about it ~ thank You Sandals piano guy for letting him share in your evening ~ I loved our room on the second floor with a balcony overlooking the ocean & beach ~ We took a day trip on a bus with a guide and several other guests, and that was also awesome ~ I would HIGHLY recommend it if you want to see more of Jamaica than just inside the resort, we went to a couple of shops , a restaurant/ bar, margaritaville , Rick's cafe and a couple of other Sandals (which was fun to see how they looked ) we actually ate lunch at one , and went swimming ~ I can not think of anything bad to say about our stay other than it had to end eventually. We are already talking about returning to maybe a Beaches Resort so we can go as a family ( Sandals is a adult only resort ) Love ~ Love ~ Loved our stay ~ <3 <3 <3 Only suggestion (from my husband) is there needed to be a couple of acoustic guitars for the guest maybe just sitting around , he would of loved to jam while there.

Room Tip: View its all about the view ,
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Starrynight50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, February 1, 2014
Thank you so much for your wonderful review of Sandals Montego Bay. We're so thrilled to read that you had such a wonderful stay with us. We strive to meet the highest levels of service and quality and I'm happy we were able to accomplish that goal during your stay.

We can't wait to welcome you back for another amazing experience.
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Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 28, 2014

We traveled from the US at the end of January with 2 other couples to celebrate a friend’s 40th birthday.

Arrival was Easy – after you clear customs and immigrations, the Sandals lounge is to the left. They tag and group your bags by resort and you wait for them to call your resort (they wait for a critical mass to arrive from the different airlines, so you wait between 10-30 minutes). Identify your bags and they take them out. They make sure to remind you that these people are not from Sandals and that you should tip them. Driver stopped first at Royal Caribbean Sandals and then at Montego Bay resort. The ride takes 10-15 minutes driving around the airport and loading/unloading bags at the resorts.

Big Al checked us in around 1:30 and directed us to our rooms, on the East side near the tennis courts. Our friends had booked an oceanfront room, and their room wasn’t ready until closer to 3P check-in time. The oceanfront room included check-in at Club Sandals, but we all commented on how Big Al was friendlier and more welcoming that the Club Sandals personnel, so I'm not sure what the upgrade is there.

Booking Meals - We were a little disappointed here. Although they claim that you can dine at any of their resorts, the woman at Club Sandals told us that they were only allocated a certain number of slots at each of the other restaurants—and that she couldn’t book us as a party of 6. It seemed ridiculous to me that she couldn’t pick up the phone and call the other resorts to book a party of 6. We ended up without reservations the 1st night, ate at Tokyo Joes the second night, Cucina Romana the 3rd night, and Oleander the 4th night. My wife and I spent an extra day after the group left and we went to the Royal Thai on the Royal Caribbean Island on the last night. It is true, that you should book your meals as soon as you get there. Perhaps, it was because we were a party of 6, but we ended up with a late reservation each night and felt bad each night as the staff was cleaning up all around us.

Two of the people in our group were Gluten Free and Sandals had choices for them. They could bake Gluten Free bread, pasta, chocolate mousse, and most of the staff knew what you could/couldn’t have. Lunch was probably the most challenging. If you ate by the pool, they had jerk chicken and chicken breasts. They also had a Greek salad that was Gluten Free. We didn’t try it, but were told that if you gave them a 30 minute notice, that they could make a gluten free pizza.

First night/Stewfish was the most disappointing. It was raining, and since we didn’t have dinner reservations, we at Stewfish. The waiter took forever (even by Caribbean standards) and best of all, told us that since it was raining that he couldn’t get the Gluten Free bread, since it was inside. My friend ended up walking in the rain to ask for some from a different restaurant. Food was okay, but not very good compared to the following nights.

Tokyo Joes had some sushi appetizers and miso soup, then you went to a station to gather the food and have the chef prepare it. GF friends had salmon appetizer (just had to remind them to exclude the mayonnaise) and were able to eat most of the other food and they were satisfied. Kadian took good care of us and introduced us to the Singapore Sling which had Gin, Cherry Liquor and Soda.

Cucina Romana was my favorite. Since it was a friends’ birthday, I went to the booking desk and wanted to ensure that they knew it was his birthday and that 2 of our group were Gluten Free. Daniel took care of us from the start and described the menu to our friends. They made Bruschetta with GF bread, had GF pasta for almost all the dishes and made a GF dessert. It was terrific. I had the Lasagna and a Tiramisu.

Oleander was good. You have to wear pants, which I hate doing on a Caribbean vacation and men have to wear closed toe-shoes. I economized in my packing and was hoping that since my feet would be covered under a tablecloth and we were the last seating that they might not care/notice. I wore pants and a nice pair of sandals with my collared shirt. The guy at the door made me go back, in the rain, to put on a pair of running shoes. I thought that this was a bit counter-productive. I would suggest that they get over themselves and if people are dressed nicely, just let us vacation in peace. With airline baggage fees and weight allowances, I wasn’t going to bring a pair of dress shoes to wear once. The rest of the meal was decent. We all had the Lobster thermador, which was good, but not terrific.

Overall, the lunch time desserts at the main buffet were great. The Dinner desserts, other than at Cucina Romana were fairly average-- One of the only real complaints on the food.

The resort is probably a little choppier in its layout than most others that we’ve visited. The game pool is closest to the lobby. During this time of year the pool was chilly. When the sun was beating down, a few of us went in, but most of the women in our group thought it was too cold. They put the volleyball net in the pool for about an hour, but if nobody was playing, they took it down. I only saw 1 game going on in the 5 days that we were there.

The pool with the swim up bar, was pretty small and over on the easternmost side of the resort. Also pretty cold. The ocean itself was actually warmer than the pools and quite pleasant. This resort doesn't have one of those large resort pools with waterfalls or slides or bridges.

We did a glass bottom boat ride, which we signed up for the day before. They canceled a few of them because it was too windy, but we finally got on one and it was pretty cool. It was less than 30 minutes and there were many areas where the coral was probably no more than 5 feet below the boat. Our friends enjoyed a quick sailing lesson and kayak rides.

We also did a private afternoon snorkeling trip with Patrick. He took us out around 4p and we snorkeled for 45 minutes, then he drove us to the Sandals Royal Caribbean island where we had a drink and then showed us around a few other areas. It was $40 per person, but cool to see something else. He’s a very pleasant guy and cool to hang out with.

We played some beach volleyball, some shuffleboard and used their gym a few times. My wife had a pricey sports massage (over $200 including tips/service charges) for a 60 minute sports massage. There is also a piano bar at the swim up bar that was usually rocking in the evenings after dinner. T he entertainment staff does a great job of walking around, telling you a little about themselves, their culture, and ensuring that you’re having fun. Shauna-Kay played catch with us for a while and told us about the piano bar and she also taugh us to twerk.

On Monday nights, they have a beach party, where most of the restaurants are closed and everyone is on the beach. It was pretty lively and looked like fun. They had taught reggae dancing earlier that day, which then people got to use that night. Since that was the only night we could get dinner reservations at the Thai restaurant at the Sandals Royal Caribbean, we go to see their Beach party too. It was definitely much livelier at the Montego Bay Sandals.
A great trip, with great fun people and good food. I saw reviews about bugs and brought spray, but didn't use it.

Departure:
Our flight was scheduled for 12:30p, so they asked us to have our bags outside of our rooms at 8:30 and get on a 9:30 shuttle. We left on a Tuesday and the lines were short. We were checked-in and past security by 10A and just sat around for another 2:30 hours just waiting for the flight. Airport is nice and has lots of stores/restaurants – including a Moes and Dairy Queen.

If you’re looking for a quiet romantic place, you might be able to find pockets of it here, but probably better off at the Royal Caribbean Sandals. We went to the big St Lucia Sandals for our honeymoon, and it was fantastic. Water was warm, people were friendly and it was geared more to honeymooners. This Sandals is better suited for groups or for couples who want a few more activities. The place is clean and people are always painting, or cleaning or trimming trees. The airplanes start overhead at about 8AM and we heard one as late at 1:30A. It's the trade off between these properties and Negril or Ochos Rios - short ride from Airport, more time on property, but a little more noise in spurts. Our room was a basic hotel room with a nice bed, not quite a Heavenly bed, but no complaints. We had a nice balcony overlooking a fountain near the croquet court.
My only suggestions for improvement (all minor) : 1) heat the pools during the cooler months of the year 2) Dinner desserts need improvement to be up to par with the rest of the food 3) umbrellas – while they provide one in your room, if you don’t bring it – or it starts raining while you are away from your room, nobody could seem to either find us an umbrella or offer to walk us to our room to get one. 4) footware- this is the Caribbean and we’re on vacation. Don’t get so uptight that you won’t let people eat at Oleander without the shoes.

Room Tip: If you go to bed early, you probably don't want a room near the swim up bar pool.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Time4TravelFor5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, February 1, 2014
Thank you so much for your great review! I'm happy to know that you enjoyed your stay at Sandals Montego Bay. Your vacation seemed to be a great one and I'm glad we were able to be a part of your experience.

We can't wait to see you again in the near future!
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Leicester, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 26, 2014

We spent a wonderful two weeks in Jamaica for our honeymoon. We decided to split our honeymoon stay between two different Sandals resorts, SWH and of course SMB.

SMB was great! This was our first time at this resort and we really enjoyed our stay. We booked and stayed in the Beachfront Hideaway Oversized Butler Village Suite. Our butlers Craig and Asha were great! They made our stay at SMB special and took care of every one of our needs! Our room was down towards the end of the property on the first floor. It was a nice spot where we enjoyed Beautiful sunsets.

This resort was special to us, we enjoyed playing a lot of beach volleyball and we met many wonderful people. The pool bar was also a fun spot where we met some good people in "the cove"! We enjoyed all dining options, but the ultimate for me was Cricketers Pub (special thanks to Shane)! The return guest dinner was a nice time.

Overall we had a great stay and we will return.

Room Tip: Always a Butler level room
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Joe W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, February 1, 2014
We're so glad to know that you had such an amazing honeymoon at Sandals Montego Bay. We always want to ensure that our guests have the best stay possible and it's wonderful to know that we were able to do just that during your stay!

Thank you for your review. We can't wait to welcome you back in the near future!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westminster, Colorado, United States
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 26, 2014

For my husband and I, this was our third trip to Jamaica. We are a couple in our 30s and are very laid back. We love Jamaica and don't just come to Jamaica to sit on the resort. We love to get out and experience the culture, the food, and people. We previously had stayed at Couples San Souci (July 2010) in Ocho Rios and Couples Swept Away (CSA) in Negril (July 2013). For this trip, we actually did a split stay, with three nights again at CSA and 3 nights at Sandals MB (where we met up with another couple). Our stay at Sandals wasn't necessarily our choice as our friends wanted to stay here, but we were glad that we had the opportunity to finally compare Couples to Sandals.

First, the pros (and to me there weren't a lot):

The food was great. Truly, we did not have a bad meal while we were there. This was actually the main reason that our friends wanted to stay here (he is a chef) and the food did not disappoint. The only complaint I would have about the food is there was really only one breakfast option and it got old. Also, at Couples, you can order a continental breakfast and coffee to your room every morning. This is one of my favorite options, being able to drink coffee on my patio in my pajamas. This was not an option at Sandals.

The evening shows were good and, in fact, I think think they were better than Couples. They at least engaged the crowd more. The shows are not really my thing and I actually usually find them very corny. However, because the crowd was involved more, it tended to be more fun. There also is a nightclub that always seemed to be playing good music and was crowded. However, we were always too tired and elected to skip this.

The last pro (which is actually more of a con) is that the resort is close to the airport. Therefore, the day we left, there was much less travel than what we would have had coming from Negril.

Now, to the cons:

First, the absolute biggest con is the location. People are not exaggerating when they say the runway is directly behind the resort. Every time a plane takes off (which is about every hour, between the hours of 11 and 11), my heart literally jumps to my throat! To me this means that you are reminded every hour that you have to hop on a plane and go home eventually. We came from Negril, where you literally do not see a plane in the sky the whole time you are there. When I first read the reviews for this resort, I did not think this was a big deal, but it was! And forget taking an afternoon nap. We tried this one day, but almost every time I fell asleep, I would wake quickly to my room shaking from a plane taking off.

Second, the beach. While the beach wasn't terrible, it was definitely not even close to the Seven Mile Beach in Negril. I am a huge beach person, and enjoy spending my days laying on the beach, with a cocktail, and reading. The first day we were there, it was a red flag day and all water activities were cancelled. The water was incredibly rough and dirty. The second day, water activities were on again. However, the day before had kicked up so much seaweed that they had to bring in a dump truck to gather and pile all of the seaweed in to. Also, beware, my husband went snorkeling twice on the second day and was stung by jellyfish both times.

The other con I have for the resort may not actually be a con to some. The grounds were very well maintained at Sandals. Too maintained. To me, the resort felt almost "fake" and very corporate. I didn't feel like I was in Jamaica while on the resort and had to keep reminding myself where I was. I'm used to the lush, natural landscape that surrounds the Couples resorts.

Overall, we had a decent stay and nothing went terribly wrong. We slept well and ate very well. We did manage to have a good time, but this was mainly because we were spending time with friends we hadn't seen in quite some time. However, the entire time, I kept wishing I was on the beautiful beach at CSA. If you are laidback, love the beach, and want to experience Jamaica, I would recommend going to CSA in Negril. On the other hand, if you do choose to stay here, I highly recommend you leave the resort and get out in Jamaica. You will not experience Jamaica sitting on this resort, 2 minutes from the airport.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Tknightco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, February 1, 2014
We're happy to read that your stay, overall, was somewhat enjoyable. We always strive to offer amazing vacation experiences and anything less than perfect calls for improvement on our part. It seems we did not meet your expectations in a few areas of our service. We want to ensure that our future guests do not share the same experience. Therefore, your feedback will be sent to our General Manager for immediate evaluation and action as needed.

Thank you for your review. We hope that you will afford us a chance to make things right during a future stay with us.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Methuen, Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 24, 2014

My wife and I vacationed at this resort in Novemeber 2013. We have stayed at many 4 and 5 star resorts throughout the Caribbean, thus far the staff at Sandals has it hands down. Very pleasant, happy to actually have you there. The Beach was top notch, clean, and always ready for its guests. The Red Lane Spa was outstanding! Dawn Smith, you and your staff are super! We will return and have marked this as one of our favorites. Keep up the great work.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank stevep67440
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
We're so happy to read that you had such an amazing vacation at Sandals Montego Bay. We always want to exceed the expectations of our guests and ensure that they are enjoying themselves during their stay. The staff will be encouraged to hear of your kind mention. Thank you so much for your review.

We look forward to your return in the near future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cherry Hill, New Jersey
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 24, 2014

We flew to MBJ via USAirways out of Philadelphia on Saturday morning. Flight was uneventful and lines at immigration were surprisingly short, especially for Saturday of MLK weekend. We were through and at the Sandals lounge in a matter of minutes.

We hopped on the bus and this time the bus went to SRC first, so I guess they mix things up as far as drop off goes. I checked my infamous bag tag and all I had was a blue tag, which I think is returning guest. I then assumed I was correct in that we would not be receiving any kind of upgrade this trip. I was wrong! Thanks to our wonderful TA Amy at DreamMakers Vacation Services, we actually received an upgrade from a luxury room, second from the bottom at this resort, to what I believe was a honeymoon butler hideaway suite in the BayRoc villas! I was stunned, and extremely grateful. The reason we did not receive another sticker was because while they gave us the room, we only received the amenities we paid for. So no club level service, no butler. We did however get to use the robes in the room as well as free wifi. But no lounge, no alcohol in room. Which was all fine by us!

The room was beautiful and in a great location, IMO. It is a bit removed from the main activities and restaurants so if you have mobility issues or just don't like to walk much you might not like the location. We loved it because it was so quiet and peaceful. This particular suite has a separate soaking tub and open stall shower, two sinks and a toilet room. You also have a large sitting area with couch and oversized chair, plus a table for two. We had a ground floor room so we then also had a patio with table and chairs, plus an extended area with two loungers and an umbrella looking out at the ocean. So in theory you could book this room and never leave if you don't want to do so. Loved it!

The food was wonderful. Dinner at Cucina Romana might be my favorite Sandals dinner ever. I also loved Bayside for dinner, and my traveling companion absolutely loved Oleander. We also had the opportunity to dine at Stewfish and Le Jardiner over at SRC. Every meal was excellent, and all dinners had great service. We ate breakfast each morning at Bayside and it was standard Sandals breakfast. The same breakfast you get at any of the resorts. We had lunch at Bayside on arrival day and the food was very good. The rest of our stay we opted for the beach grill, which was quick and easy, and good, once we figured out how the service works. That is my one little suggestion to Sandals. I wish the beach grills had more consistent service across resorts. It always feels confusing to me how to place you order and it varies by resort. At SMB, some days they came over and took your order at the table, other days we would have waited forever for someone to bother, so we learned quickly to just go up to the counter and order our food. They would then happily deliver it to you at a table.

This resort definitely has a different vibe then SRC, which I stayed at back in November. SMB is absolutely more active, more fun, more relaxed. The dress code is more casual across the board. It feels like a laid back beach party at SMB, whereas SRC is quieter and more formal, by far. The beach activities actually were hopping at SMB. The playmakers did not have to beg people to participate. There were always plenty of guests willing to play sports or take dance lessons or whatever was being offered. It is definitely a fun resort! This resort also had the most mixed crowd I have ever seen at a Sandals, so for those of you who feel strongly about the whole "couples only" rule, this might not be your favorite resort. Clearly the majority of guests were couples, but there were plenty of mixed groups and groups of men/women who clearly were not traveling with significant others. This does not bother me in the least but I know not everyone feels that way so I thought I would mention it.

Finally I cannot say enough about the customer service we experienced. This is why I keep coming back to the Sandals brand over and over again. We actually were supposed to come home yesterday but due to bad weather back home, we had to stay an extra day. This is where a great TA is invaluable, as well as an excellent company like Sandals. Sandals could not have made things easier or more comfortable for us. They not only allowed us to stay an extra night, complimentary, but also allowed us to keep our room after originally being told we could stay but would have to move. It was wonderful. Something I otherwise would have been completely stressing about turned into a completely easy, hassle free experience. I am so grateful to Sandals and our TA Amy for helping us out and ensuring we were completely taken care of and comfortable when our travel plans changed unexpectedly. I am very impressed.

Overall we had a wonderful five nights of relaxation, good food and drink, and fun. I wouldn't hesitate to go back to SMB, and yes, it is true, you do get used to the airplanes after the first day! I honestly stopped noticing them.

Room Tip: Bay Roc Villas are the quietest rooms, but are also the farthest away from the restaurants and enter...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Kate C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Montego Bay, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Thank you so much for your review of Sandals Montego Bay. We're delighted to read that you had such an awesome time at our resort. We are so happy that we succeeded in creating that luxury romantic experience for you. You enjoyed every minute of your vacation and it was a pleasure sharing the experience with you.

We look forward to your return for an even better stay in the near future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Montego Bay

Property: Sandals Montego Bay
Address: Montego Bay, Kent Avenue, Montego Bay 100, 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:
#7 Romantic Hotel in Montego Bay
#7 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Montego Bay
#9 Luxury Hotel in Montego Bay
#10 Family Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Montego Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 223
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•Largest private white sand beach on the north coast •The entertainment capital of the Sandals brand with nightly professional shows and upbeat, active, fun-loving daytime activities. •Six exquisite dining options•Complimentary transfers to Sandals Royal Caribbean and Sandals Carlyle. Enjoy all the luxuries included in our “stay at one, play at three” concept offering 18 dining options •Air-conditioned departure lounge•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 Montego Bay Hotel Montego Bay
Sandals Hotel Montego Bay
Montego Bay Sandals Hotel
Sandal Montego Bay

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