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“Great NewYears Eve at Sandals Carlyle Inn”
Review of Sandals Inn

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Sandals Inn
Ranked #14 of 63 Hotels in Montego Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 15, 2011

Background: We are in our early 40’s, been to multiple Sandals Resorts and have always had a good time. We have tried other AI resorts or cruises and we always find we are more satisfied with the Sandals product. We know they are not perfect, but we have never had a bad trip at Sandals. For New Years Eve we’ve been to parties, hosted parties and even went to Las Vegas. My husband and I wanted to try something different. We wanted to go for a long weekend “out of the country” and in a warm place for NYE.
Prior to us leaving I had read many reviews on Sandals Carlyle Inn. Due to the price, short location from the airport, and proximity to the other Sandals properties we chose SCI. We were anxious but still a little nervous going to the Inn. We don’t like really large resorts, but we didn’t want one that was too small.

Flights/Customs: We flew Delta on the 5 am flight and got to Jamaica around 4pm. This flight and customs went smoothly. Our flight home we had a 3 hr. delay in MSP. This wasn’t fun sitting in the airport until 1:30 am before they canceled our flight; but Delta gave us food vouchers, taxi vouchers, paid for the hotel, $50.00 for each of us and then delivered our luggage to our home.

Resort: After going through customs, and stopping quickly at the Sandals lounge, in the airport, we were off to the Inn. From the moment we got to the resort we knew everything would be “no problem”!!! We were greeted with the usual Sandals greetings of drinks and a cool washcloth while we checked in. We were then taken to our room on the 3rd floor with a great view overlooking the pool and the public beach. We booked our vacation with Amy McHugh from Dream Makers Vacation Service. And I know she is the reason for getting the perfect room location. We love a view and it couldn’t have been a better location. We enjoyed waking up and sitting on the balcony and having coffee, or just relaxing on the balcony in the evening. I thought we’d use the 24 room service more, but it was just as easy to walk to one of the restaurants. I did miss getting the newsletter that tells you what is happening daily on the resort. We did get one the last night we were there.
The resort is small and quaint but it was very welcoming and every employee on the resort was very friendly and had true concern that you were having fun and enjoying your vacation. Cheryl Brown and her staff put on a great New Years Eve Gala with decorations, entertainment, food, drinks and great involvement from the staff. We had the best NYE ever. We appreciate all the hard work the staff put into getting the resort ready and taking it down. They worked very hard and it looked wonderful!
Our favorite restaurant at SCI was the Carlyle. Every meal we had there was great. The staff was very attentive and the chef even came out to ask how everything was. Breakfast at The Bay Window was good also. My only complaint would be that I missed having mimosas in the morning. I asked for one, but never got it. They could have a place near the buffet, like some other Sandals, where you could serve yourself. The service was always very friendly here. Devon and the staff always made sure you were satisfied.
We never had to wait long for a drink at the bar and the bartenders were always having fun and interacting and showing the guest tricks. I also noticed that they still had the “top shelf” liquor at SCI (Appleton & Bombay) where as at the other resorts (SMB & SRC) they didn’t have top shelf liquor.
Our room was decent size and updated. The bathroom was small, but was still updated. The housekeeping staff always had our room cleaned, stocked with adequate linen and made sure the fridge was stocked with plenty of water and diet cola. They did a great job. Thanks Maxine.
One of the nights we came “home” we opened the room door and there were candles lit all over the room and a bottle of champagne. That was a big unexpected surprise!!! I have a feeling that Amy keeping in contact with Lisa G. and Cheryl had something to do with this all! Thanks!
Some people have commented about the car alarms going off and loud music from the public beach. Yes there was car alarms going off, but when we closed our doors at night we could barely hear them. They weren't any bother to us at all. I hear more alarms going off daily in our house such as the microwave, washer dryer, and oven. Don't let the alarm sounds deter you from going.

Other resorts: We took the shuttle to visit SMB and SRC. I liked the beach at SMB. It was nice with fine white sand and not crowded. A couple nights we went to the resort for drinks. We also stopped at Cricketers to eat and have drinks. We were expecting Cricketers to be similar to The Pub at SGSL. Not even close. It was very small, not many options on the menu, not the best food (my husband’s meal was good, but mine was uneatable- boney, and fatty) and the pub is VERY COLD! During our couple times at SMB and interacting with multiple SMB staff we never got a very friendly or welcoming feeling. The staff just seemed to be working to get a paycheck and not enjoying their jobs. We did go to SRC multiple times too. This resort has a lot of action and interaction with the Playmakers. We didn’t get there until maybe 9:30 am so there was never chairs by the pool, so we were on the beach. We had stayed at SRC many years ago so it was nice to see what had changed or been updated. We enjoyed our time we spent there. We ate at the Grill and always had a good meal. We also went to Cricketers for dinner one night. The staff was very entertaining and the food good. Since we weren’t in Jamaica long we didn’t make reservations at any restaurant off the resort (SCI). We usually eat later and go on vacations to not be on a schedule. We did eat at the Regency Suite and had a good meal. I had surf and turf. My only recommendation for others is to remember to bring a watch for daytime. We didn’t, so we had to ask bartenders what time it was so we didn’t miss the shuttle. That didn’t always work well for us. We missed the shuttle 3 times!!!!! Oh well, that meant more time on the beach or at the beach bar!! It did work out well in the end, but next time I’ll bring a watch.

I have to say we had a great time at SCI and would definitely go back. Now I know what everyone meant by the personable staff at SCI. They were right. The staff was amazing, from the time we checked in until we left. I liked how it was a smaller resort and all the staff helped out with other duties such as the maintenance guy helping the bellman, the pool guy getting guests drinks and even the ladies in the Spa asking if we wanted a drink. We didn’t need one, but it was the thought that counted. Cheryl and her staff all work well together. I am so glad I got to meet them. Thanks for making our trip memorable. Thank you Amy for all you did too! We know your knowledge and contacts with Sandals helped make our vacation amazing and special.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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11  Thank NDBeachbum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 11, 2011

This was my first Sandals experience, and I must say that it was thoroughly enjoyable. It was a Christmas getaway with my parents and fiance, and we had a lovely time. The rooms were comfortable and spacious, though with such compelling activities and scenery available, one does not spend much time in the rooms. The pool area was gorgeous, the perfect atmosphere for relaxation after partaking of some of the more adventurous beach activities.

The restaurants offered at the Carlyle were wonderful and negated the need to visit the restaurants at the other Sandals resorts in town, a convenience that is complimentary with the "Stay at 1, play at 3" feature. The resident chefs are of the highest quality, having trained in France and proudly wearing the "toque blanche" of their culinary status. The service was unrivaled, as the attentive waitstaff anticipated our every desire and displayed the most comforting decorum that makes one appreciative of the first class meals. The hotel manager never failed to stop by our table to see to our comfort and exchange pleasantries. The Christmas buffet was particularly good, as the chefs put forth a masterpiece, the presentation rivaling the quality of the spread and making for a memorable dining experience.

The Carlyle sits right across the street from a small public beach, but the much larger private beaches are easily accessible to Carlyle guests by taking the shuttle to either of the two other Sandals resorts in Montego Bay. The activities offered at the beach were soooo much fun for an active couple such as myself and my fiance, we loved sailing on the hobbycats, snorkeling at the reef, sea kayaking, and getting in on the pick up games of beach volleyball. For those more inclined to relax, there were plenty of comfy beach chairs and loungers available, without feeling crowded and preserving a comfortable space for couples without encroaching upon each other.

Back at the Carlyle, Crazy Ray made the stay memorable by leading many fun activities, such as afternoon Texas hold'em poker tournaments, and dance lessons for those interested in learning some of the traditional Jamaican/african heritage dances, as well as the latest moves to bust out in the clubs! Crazy Ray is passionate about the culture of his people and if you show even the slightest interest, he is delighted to share his passion with you!

Additionally, the Carlyle offers nightly entertainment of the highest quality, whether it be live music, dance performers, karaoke, and other such fun. We had the priviledge of attending a performance of a traditional dance troupe, which included a snake charmer, a fire breather, and physics defying limbo in which the performer cleanly passed below the limbo-stick (on fire no less) set a mere 8 inches off the ground!

All in all, it was a wonderful vacation, the perfect getaway from wintry Ohio, an unforgettable trip I will cherish for years to come.

Come to Jamaica!

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Nathan L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2011

We are old time Sandals Signature or Sandals Select (whatever we continually returning Sandals lovers are called now) Members. We have earned one set of golden sandals for 70 nights at Sandals and are going for our 2nd 70! Anyhow, we were treated so wonderfully at the Carlyle (our second stay there), that we cannot wait to return! Yes, it is the smallest of the 3 Montego Bay Sandals properties, but the staff here at the Carlyle is just so awesome that they more than make up for its size! The food is particularly wonderful (presentation, portions and taste!)! We went for Christmas and were there from Dec. 23rd through the 27th for 5 nights and WOW! just loved it. We were upgraded to a 3rd floor room and had room service and a darling balcony and ocean view. Everything has been redone and is super clean and just precious! We have stayed at the Whitehouse 6 times and the Royal Caribbean 6 times as well, but this most recent visit to the Carlyle was just awesome. Playmaker Crazy Ray was just tremendous and soo talented and the maitre d was Mr. Charming himself. The Christmas talent show was better than anything at any of the other resorts! Anyhow, even if you feel you must go over to the other resorts to visit, this small charmer will welcome you HOME with gracious open arms. VIVA, Carlyle!! Tom and Debbie Moran of Texas

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Factoid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2011

Flew out of Philly on Dec. 31 on Air Jamaica 6:00 a.m. flight. Arrived in MBJ at 9:25 flew through customs and immigrations. Arrived at the Inn by 10 a.m. We were greeted by Paul (bell-person) with a warm smile. Paul told us to go have breakfast since we had such an early day of traveling. While having breakfast I was greeted with a warm hug and kiss by Cheryl Brown, Manager of the Carlyle Inn

After breakfast we were told our room was ready. Thanks to Ruth@Trip Guy Travel and Cheryl Brown we were upgraded to room 314 on the top floor. We booked the lowest level room this was a very nice upgrade. We were not expecting an upgrade due to it being New Year's eve and full capacity.

NYE was a really wonderful evening. They built a stage across the pool for the band to play and people to dance. Chairs were covered in white with gold bows. Balloons were ready to be released at midnight. Tables were set up around the pool. Dinner was a buffet that had something for everyone to eat. Desert table had a choc fountain and various other deserts. They had singers, fire dancers but the highlight of the night was watching all the employees be able to dance and enjoy themselves after the affair was over. We sat on our balcony watching them dance, push each other in the pool...they worked so hard for this night. Some got home at 1 a.m. and were back in work at 7 a.m. the next day.

The rest of the time we spent some days at the Royal, MB and the Inn.

We ate at Tokyo Joes ( did not have reservations) we were undecided what to do for dinner an employee went to the manager and he accommodated us right on the spot. When leaving we thanked him told him this is what makes Sandals so special. The french restaurant at the Royal which was wonderful I had escargot it was delicious. Monday evening we ate at the Bayside at the Inn. They had a piano player poolside it turned out to be a lovely night.

Tuesday evening was the returning guest dinner. We received our silver sandals. We were happy to receive them from one of our favorite Sandals managers. We sat with Max and Ken (they are on TTO) lovely couple. It was neat finally meeting in person.

One night coming back to the Inn from dinner we met Carolyn's (Twotravelers she is on TTO and Rantalot) brother John and sister in law Margo. What great people. Felt as if we knew them our whole life.

We met people who have spent the last 10 NY at the Inn.

We did not book to return because just not sure what the future holds for us. However, if we are able to return we will.

The staff at the Inn is what makes this place. Cheryl, Lisa, Doreen, Kaveen(Soon Come back), Paul, crazy Ray, the waitstaff, Chefs, etc. I know I forgot people but they are all wonderful.

When we were leaving everyone was coming out to give us hugs goodbye. It was a wonderful way to bring in the New Year.

I know I did not go into a lot of details, if you have questions do not hesitate to ask.

Stayed: December 2010, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Fraclar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2011

Just returned from our annual winter vacation in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The Inn has reopened in a new updated vrsion, but fortunately with many of the same wonderful staff. GM, Cheryl Brown, leads an amazing staff who is constantly available to cater to every request a guest makes. As returning guests, multiple times (10 years to be exact), we are treated like royalty from the moment we walk in the door and see Paul who grabs our bags and gets us settled in our room! Unfortunately, we arrived in Jamaica ill. Head chef Donovan headed into town to the pharmacy for us! Devon and the service staff kept the delicious food coming! (Don't know how they remember exactly what we like to eat!)Nicola kept our beautifully redecorated room immaculate! Doreen, Kaveen, and Lisa were always at hand to give their all to make our stay the best. And...Nola.....who always has new and beautiful items to purchase. Thanks to all the new staff for making yourselves known to us and always greeting us with enthusiasm and big smiles! We tried something different this time....a trip with Island Routes to Dolphin Cove.....a trip to be remembered. Anyone who has not gone on this adventure, should plan to go. A big thank you to everyone for making our vacation the best! Looing forward to going again very soon! See you in Dec. or sooner???

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Dr_Suzanne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2011

We have been to the Inn before (June of 2008) and decided to return to the Inn and bring friends with us this time. All I can say is that the renovations and improvements are amazing! Our last trip was good, but this time it was OUTSTANDING!!! The staff was wonderful, and the rooms and food have been improved. Our stay was from Mon, Dec 20 - Tues. Dec. 28th.

We stayed on the 3rd floor (penthouse level) and were in rooms 305 & 306. We LOVED having rooms that werent facing the pool as our balconies were very private and we could still see and hear the ocean! one note: all 3rd floor rooms now have in-room a/c -- no a/cs that hang out over the room door.... MUCH better as there is no dripping into the hallway. also, the rooms and hallways on the 3rd floor all have tile floors.... VERY nice -- no more carpeting!:)

Cheryl, Lisa, Kaveen, bartenders Clinton & Richard, Devon (restaurant manager), Paris, Crazy Ray, and many more were AWESOME. They knew us by name by the second day and they took time to make us feel like family. We did use the shuttle and visit the other resorts, but we always made sure to make time each day for our family at the Inn:).

The returning guest dinner was fabulous (flet minon & shrimp) and the returning guest cruise was an excellent addition! The head chef at the Inn is a NEW addition and has re-vamped the menu. Each time we ate at the Inn we saw him walking between restaurants to make sure everything was going smoothly. He even stopped at our table a few times to talk and get to know us. He is the Inn's newest 'gem':)

I also want to recognize our TA Ruth (IrieLady) as she was an addition to our travelling this time, and we could feel the difference from the moment we arrived. Cheryl (the resort manager) even told us that Ruth had called & spoken with her during our stay to make sure we were having a good vacation... thank u sooooo much Ruth! I highly recommend her to all!!!

We can't wait to return to our extended family at the Inn, and hope to do so in the near future!!!

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank my_4_girlsOhio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 1, 2011

This was our first trip to Jamaica and the first time we stayed at a Sandals resort. We brought our two adult sons. They had a terrific time, but the resort did not have many singles staying there. It is definitely a couples' resort, not a family resort. The staff was terrific. We got to know them by name. The resort is small enough so the staff gets to know the guests very well. They make a point of interacting. Sandals Carlyle had very good food, with different selections in the dining room, the Carlyle (near the amphitheatre ... requires booking) and the grill. Room service is also available. The only thing lacking at this resort is a private beach with water sports. (Public beach is across the road.) If you are heavily into these types of things then the Carlyle would not be your best choice. However, you can take a shuttle to the Sandals Montego Bay or Royal Caribbean to do the water sports, as well as the other entertainment and dining experiences the other resorts offer. We felt that the smaller, more intimate atmosphere at the Carlyle was much more to our liking, and water sports are not that important for us, though the boys went snorkelling several times at the Sandals Montego Bay. If all you want to do is get some sun, you can do that out at the pool deck or in the gardens. We got to know some of the other guests; this would have likely been more difficult in a large resort. The hotel has excellent security, and the guardsmen record your destination if you are leaving the site, and check that you have returned. Ask for advice on anything you plan to do at the front desk and they will get you there and back safely -- don't arrange local taxis on the street -- it could be too risky and its not worth what you might save in the lower fare. The strip and a Jamaican craft market are within comfortable walking distance. Be prepared to experience some vendors who are overly "enthusiastic" and persistent. Bartering is common. US currency is accepted. The only negative things about the Carlyle for us were relatively minor. The traffic on the road in front of the Inn has drivers who blast their music late at night. Bring ear plugs. The Inn should lobby their local government to establish a noise bylaw prohibiting the excessive noise after 9:00 pm. It interfered with some of the wonderful evening entertainment. The exercise room has good equipment, the pool and whirlpool are well maintained and so are the grounds. The spa has good services - my wife had her hair braided, and they worked on her for 3 1/2 hours for a very reasonable price. The gift shop has some nice items. I wish the Inn offered free wireless internet for guests. Instead, we used the internet cafe at Sandals Montego Bay for $15.00 for a half hour --- quite a steep price. The Inn undergoes renovations in the off season -- you'll notice how clean the walls are on the interior and exterior. If you have travelled to other tropical locations you have likely seen how dingy walls get after a very short time - nothing like that at the Sandals resorts! There are no insect problems -- I had only three bites in seven days and did not use any repellants. The tap water is potable and the electrical supply is consistent and reliable. If you are looking for a good value in a resort, this is it. Many guests return to the Sandals Carlyle over and over again, which shows just how much they enjoy staying there. That, in itself, speaks highly of the experience you will have. We are already planning our next trip to the Inn. Can't wait to go back! Eire Mon!

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled with family
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2  Thank ghuczek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sandals Inn

Address: Kent Avenue, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint James Parish > Montego Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge 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:
#3 Romantic Hotel in Montego Bay
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#12 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range: $304 - $688 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Sandals Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 52
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•A romantic, intimate atmosphere with personalized service.•The real Jamaican experience; Jamaican smiles and attentive service to make you feel at home instantly.•Small in size yet big on charm and large in value.•Close proximity to Montego Bay 'Hip Strip', where you will find duty free shopping, restaurants, bars and clubs.•24 hour room service for all room levels.•Butler service available for our newly renovated, top category room, the Carlyle Club Ocean View Penthouse.•Complimentary shuttle bus to Sandals Royal Caribbean and Sandals Montego Bay “Stay at one play at three”, where you can enjoy eighteen dining experiences.•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 Carlyle Hotel Montego Bay
Sandals Hotel Montego Bay
Sandals Inn Jamaica
Sandals Jamaica
Sandals Montego Bay
Sandals Inn Montego Bay

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