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“The bedbugs bite here--Rooms need a major renovation, common areas nice”

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Altamont West Hotel
Ranked #29 of 63 Hotels in Montego Bay
Reviewed July 31, 2011

I'm writing this at 5:20 in the morning because that's when the pounding music from the club next door just shut down. Yes, I know it's on the hip strip, but loud music all night when I'm not partying is a little too much. They provide Internet and a flat screen tv. The common areas are nice with a modern, boutique-like setting, but the rooms are a major step down from that theme.

We had a double bed room which was so small that the door hit the bed when it opened.
The spreads had holes in them and had a questionable odor. I removed those to find yellowing "white" sheets that were as rough as sandpaper. I also noticed a few bugs crawling around. I asked the maid to change the sheets, and they quickly replaced them with a new set of course sheets, but it was still a fitful night's sleep.

The handsome front desk clerk was occupied much of the time chatting with a gentleman friend and seemed annoyed when he was interrupted by basic questions.

We survived the night with a few bites from the bugs and pounding headaches. If you're not partying, save your sanity and book at Decameron down the street. They are just as close to the airport, easy access to clubs, the rooms are massive and they even include food.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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3  Thank shiptravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DonahueMobay, General Manager at Altamont West Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 9, 2011

Good day -
I write to respond to the recent critique "The bedbugs bite here" .

Firstly, it is true that we are located very close to a couple of nightclubs. It is not normal for the partying to carry on as late as it did on this particular night, but having said that, I must point out that we are located on what is know as the "hip Strip" which is famous for its nightclubs including Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville, popular hotels, beaches and restaurants. The Miami Herald has stated, "Altamont West is our choice for Budget Hotels on the Hip Strip".

We have rooms of differing sizes, locations and rates. We purchased this property five years ago and have been upgrading constantly but gradually since then. In this business constant upgrading is almost a necessity since without customer satisfaction one's occupancy level decreases. Since we have been in business this is the first time we have had allegations of bed bugs being in any of our rooms. In fact, when the guest called and asked that the spread and sheets be changed, despite the fact that the sheets are brand new (less than two weeks old) which are washed and treated with fabric softener in our inhouse laundry facility, the housekeeper (as well as the housekeeping supervisor) both inspected the spread and found neither any bedbugs nor any evidence of holes or damage in either the spread or the sheets. The guest made absolutely no mention of bedbugs nor discolouration when the housekeepers came to the room. It is possible that any bugs that the guest may have seen in the room could have come from outside of the room when the door or window was momentarily opened. We are in a tropical climate and this is not so strange, whether one stays in a five star Ritz Carlton or a three star Altamont West. However, I strongly refute the allegation that there were or have ever been bed bugs in our establishment.

We have an over 80% repeat guest rate. At any given time most of the guests in the hotel would have been here before. Our level of guest satisfaction is fairly high for a hotel of our size.

As aforementioned upgrading the hotel is a costly and gradual process. Because there is little we can do about the noise factor we have identified soundproof windows which we wiill be installing soon. Despite the high level of customer satisfaction with the product, our rooms likewise are constantly being upgraded.

All hotels which are a part of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association , as we are, are guided by strict inspections criteria given by the Ministry of Tourism with the inspections being carried out on a regular basis by the Public Health Authority and the Tourism Product development Company.

Although a rare occurence here at Altamont West, the Front Desk Staff's behaviour was unfortunate and we apologize for this. The staff member is no longer a part of our team.

We would have hoped that the issues mentioned by the guest in this forum might have been mentioned to Management at the moment of the dissatisfaction so that steps could have been taken to alleviate her concerns (ie. possibly moving her to other more spacious available rooms further away from the noise).

We urge anyone reading these comments to understand that all experiences are but a moment in time.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (124)
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87 - 93 of 124 reviews

Reviewed May 5, 2011

I stayed at this hotel for a couple of nights before meeting up with friends at another location and would recommend it for short-term stay. It is a boutique hotel with charm.
Pros: convenient location, I could easily walk to the beach and other options for eating
Basic rooms, very clean, could use a little sprucing up but nice amenities with flat screen tv on the wall and ipod player, you can also request a small fridge
Updated bathroooms is good!
My fav feature is the big veranda, where u can sit or catch up with friends
Good rate, which includes cooked full breakfast options
Friendly and helpful staff

Cons: The rooms are a bit dark and could use additional lighting
If staying to the front of the hotel, u will hear alot of noise from the street, this does not bother me but may affect others
small parking space if u have a rental

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled on business
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1  Thank TravelLady035
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 11, 2011

My family stayed at the Altamont West for a couple of nights while in Montego Bay for a wedding. We had 7 rooms reserved at the hotel. The rooms are very small, no frills, although we did have a large flat screen TV. Some of the rooms have updated bathrooms. My particular room did not have an upgraded bathroom but the bathroom was more than acceptable. Try to reserve an interior room. We had Room 305, facing the street, and the street noise was very intense in the evening.

The service was hit or miss. The management (both hotel and restaurant) bent over backwards to make sure our large group was accommodated. The housekeeping staff was also very pleasant. However, some of the front desk and restaurant staff members either did not know what they were doing or were just plain rude.

My husband and I had a couple's massage from the spa on the property. It was amazing. Ask for Shurla!

All in all, Altamont West is a great value for a good location. Just be realistic in your expectations and you will be happy.

P.S. The hotel is in the process of upgrading to a more high-end (a.k.a South Beach) vibe. I see the vision and expect that it will be a premium boutique hotel in the near future.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank LawGirlATL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 25, 2010

A hidden gem on the touristy strip of Montego Bay. This hotel is great value for money and is just on the cusp of being a boutique hotel. The veranda is great for loungning and watchin the sun set. Their attention to the small details distinguishes this hotel from many others that just provide shelter for guests. The grand piano, the landscaping, the wooden deck chairs, the little spa downstairs make this place a pleasure to stay in. Plus its next to 'The Native' restaurant where you get some of the best local food in town.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with friends
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2  Thank ClipperCV5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 16, 2010

Stayed at the Altamont for 1 night upon arriving in Jamaica. The hotel is located in the middle of Gloucester Ave, a.k.a. " The hip strip" but I didn't find it " hip" at all. It's a badly paved road where boomboxing cars speed through and hustlers try to sell you weed. Not an attractive street to stroll around especially on the parts where you have to walk on the road because there is no pavement! Nothing much to see either, no nice shops or grocerie stores. However, the Doctor's Cave beach down the road is beautiful. It's 5 dollars entrance fee, but worth it because it's quiet and hassle free (at least, when we were there).
About the hotel: it has a free parking lot. The building looks well maintained and has a nice patio overlooking the ocean. We stayed in room 310. We liked the big kingsize bed, but I agree with others that the room was on the small side. Next to the bedroom is a big dressing room. If it were up to me, I'd tear down the separating wall. Instead of two small rooms, you would have 1 large room! I found everything to be clean. Did not like the flatscreen tv. It had international channels, but the reception was poor and the sound even worse. Unfortunately the Wifi didn't work either, but by plugging in the telephone cable, we had Internet in our room. But the biggest problem for us was the loud music that played all night. It came from some bar next door. Way to loud. Fortunately we were very tired and fell asleep anyway.
Did not really like the staff at the reception. We were early for check in and the girl at front desk said " are you aware of the check in time?" without even saying hello first. She did check us in though. Further we had to figure out ourselves that you have to get a key for the safe at reception (deposit: 50 dollar). She should have told us. Not very friendly or smiley either. In the evening we wanted to get a drink, but they only served warm ones?! And when we wanted to pay, the staff didn't have change enough. We were also hungry, but the guy could not give us any advice where to go.
The bar was closed. The pool didn't look very inviting (small and dirtyish). All in all the hotel looked kinda deserted.
The breakfast in the restaurant next door was very good. I had the berry banana French toast and it was really good. Best fresh orange juice I tasted in a long time. The coffee was bad. What I didn't like is that we were told we could eat for 600 Jamiacan dollars. We both spended 550 dollars, but still had to pay extra because they didn't mention that tax and service costs weren't included. It's not about the money (was next to nothing) but I had to walk back to the hotel to get my wallet.
All in all it was alright for the night, but I would not want to stay here on a long vacation. But I would not want to be in Montego Bay for a long vacation anyway. Negril and Ocho Rios are much nicer and more laid back.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank ichristiani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2010

First time traveling outside the U.S. and to Jamaica. Overall my trip was great. The hotel was average. The rooms were small and very basic. It was a bit nosey one night when the restaurant and bar was open. Then another night a couple got into an fight so yelling and glass breaking was very noisy.

I didn't like the wooden blinds because they didn't seem very secure. There were also alot of mosquitos in the room. I don't think the cleaning staff did a good job w/ cleaning the room either. There was mold in between the grout of the tile in the shower, black marks on the wall, the rug didn't seem vaccumed had dirt on it, the ironing board was very nasty looking and the closet space was small.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled solo
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Thank yellow_mellow79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 12, 2010

We stayed one night at the Altamont because our Sunday flight had been delayed to Monday. The room was clean but quite dark. Disco music blared next door until 3 am, and as others have mentioned, with just louver windows, it was a major problem. The pool was small but tidy. The restaurant / wine bar on site did not seem to be operational. The restaurant next door, The Native, was fantastic. The Altamont was a clean place to lay my head for one night, but would not be my choice for a vacation hotel.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank jenniferjr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Altamont West Hotel

Address: 33 Gloucester Ave, Montego Bay, Jamaica (Formerly Belvedere Beach Hotel)
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint James Parish > Montego Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #29 of 63 Hotels in Montego Bay
Price Range: $117 - $141 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Altamont West Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 31
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Altamont West is a newly refurbished 31 room boutique hotel located on Montego Bay's "Hip Strip". Situated across the street from the Walter Fletcher white sand beach, and home to the much sought-after "Body Bliss" Spa, the hotel has a swimming pool and free wireless internet. Rates include a Continental Breakfast. All rooms have air-conditioning, CD clock radio, 32" wall-mounted flat screen TV, iron, safe, and hair dryer. A conference room is also on property. ... more   less 
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