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“Best Resort in Jamaica!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Secrets St. James Montego Bay

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Secrets St. James Montego Bay
Ranked #10 of 61 Hotels in Montego Bay
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
East Northport, New York, United States
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Best Resort in Jamaica!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 6, 2013

Just returned from Secrets St. James and had the best time! The resort is absolutely beautiful, the food is excellent and the staff could not be more friendly & accommodating. I would like to specifically thank our concierge, Marcia Berry, for catering to our every need! She is the best. Our room was beautiful & perfectly located - overlooking the pool & the ocean. The grounds were immaculate - grass, trees, shrubs were beautifully manicured. The one thing that everyone was talking about was how amazingly comfortable the beds were!! If anyone knows where we can buy one of those mattresses, please share this information. Of all of the restaurants, the Bordeaux and Blue Mountain were our favorites - the Japanese our least favorite. Prior to coming to Secrets, we stayed at two different Sandals in Jamaica. Secrets gives you so much more for a lot less money. We will definitely come back.

Room Tip: Ask for a room on floors 3,4 or 5 for the best view. If you don't like day time noise, then ask...
See more room tips
  • 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 Donna C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2,290)
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English first
New Jersey
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 6, 2013

I've said this before and I say again, "Anyone second guessing this resort due to bad reviews can stop worrying right now." This place SETS THE STANDARD for what an all-inclusive resort should be. Granted everyone will have different opinions and expectations are everything based on previous travel, however after my 2nd visit here with my girlfriend, we cannot believe some of the complaints that we’ve noticed in reviews about here. My advice to skeptical reviewers, take note of what those complaints are and determine which are not the fault of the resort (i.e., loud couples, smokers, couldn’t get a good seat at the piano bar, etc.). I could post on here how I didn’t care for the rain during our stay but that has no reflection of the resort or its staff.

Anyway, my girlfriend and I stayed in the St James Preferred Club for 6 nights (originally planned for 5) and here is our review with as much detail as possible to assist others.

SERVICE (5/5): Easily the #1 thing to comment on as it is five-star across the board. The entire staff from waiters, bartenders, receptionists and right down to maintenance and housekeeping staff is friendly and hospitable. Visitors receive the same level of courtesy and pleasantness whether they were tipping or not, although we tried to take care of the staff whenever we could. Clearly, the staff is very well trained and considerable effort is made to employ pleasant and hospitable people. I'd like to especially mention Chris Brown (Bellman) and Deidre (Front Desk).

For those staying in suites, you will receive butler service which is everything a butler service should be and more. They will make dinner arrangements, bring things to your room, call to make sure you are doing alright and even surprise you with a few things of their own. I can’t say enough about Petrona, Michael and Dalton; they are fantastic and go well out of their way to make sure you enjoy yourself.

ROOMS (5/5): The rooms are modern and very well maintained and the beds are very comfortable. We stayed in the Preferred Club which I HIGHLY RECOMMEND. We have stayed in a standard room before which has a table and chairs and a soaking tub on the balcony. On this trip we stayed in the Presidential Suite which is hard to describe how large and beautiful it was (most notably the balcony). Please note that aside from the size of the room itself, our experience at the resort was no different when staying the in a standard room or a suite, I just felt I would comment on how great it was since we stayed there.

FOOD & DRINKS (5/5): Plenty of options for food (particularly dinner) given the different restaurants they offer. There are also featured nights which offer steak or lobster night buffet style. Make it a priority to have jerk chicken from one of the guys walking by with the carts (they do not even advertise this on their site although they should). It’s the best jerk chicken you will ever have. We also strongly recommend doing dinner on the beach (additional cost but well worth it) as the menu, food, setup and service are all first class. The surf and turf dinner is fantastic.

OVERALL (5/5): Secrets will absolutely leave you wanting more. After staying here two years ago, then going to another resort last year, we couldn’t wait to come back. In fact, we even changed our flight home this time (as we were about to check out) and extended our stay one more night. We are all about relaxing while on vacation but there is plenty to do for those looking to venture out and partake in water sports and other activities which you can learn more about on their website.

The worst part about this trip is leaving, book your next vacation here without worry and disregard any negative commentary you read about this place, particularly when it comes to service. We cannot wait to visit another Secrets resort and return to this one in the future.

Room Tip: Preferred Club is the way to go
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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?
7 Thank RC21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Moody, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2013

Where to begin....Ren who picked us up at the airport was a fabulous host and driver. He gave us such great info on our drive to the Resort and a wonderful welcome. We also booked Ren for our drive back to the airport on our last day.
The resort was gorgeous, immaculate and they made you feel like it was home. We were greeted with big welcoming smiles and champagne upon our arrival.
Our room was awesome and only a few steps from the pool, restaurants/bar and the lobby if we needed.
The food was fabulous at every restaurant. Make sure you check out the Japanese restaurant and book with a chef-so fun.
Our days were so fun as the entertainment crew at the middle pool were excellent. They are always dancing and running great activities. Miss them too much!
Special thanks to the hardest working girls on the resort, the servers at the pool and beach that walk all day long in that hot sun. They have a big smile on their face, always greeting everyone like they are the first guest of the day. Specials thanks to Carrie-Ann & Simone. They were all lovely but Carrie-Anne and Simone were special to us.
Our days at the beach were extra fun because of the Water Sports Crew. They helped us snorkel, parasail and so much more. Special thanks to Polo, Junior, Stuart, Tony, Lincoln, Kevin, Gregory & Jiju.
Andre at the Piano bar was fantastic and we didn't miss a night in 18 nights.

The best part of our trip was our nights at Desires. We met the best servers and bartenders ever. They were so welcoming, fun and we never had to wait for a drink. In fact when they saw us walk into the bar a drink was waiting for us. Thank you Dane & English. We can't wait to come back and visit again. If anyone is visiting soon please tell them hello from Rachael & Michelle.
We loved the resort but we loved the people more. You have a beautiful country full of beautiful people!
We will be returning.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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 Rachael M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Greensboro
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2013

The rooms are really nice and the water on the beach was beautiful and clear. The preferred club is definitely the way to go if you are going to go there as the pool scene is more relaxing and the access to top shelf liquor.

There were certain people on the staff that were really amazing...the staff at the Jamaican restaurant, Diedre at check in, and Chris Brown (bell captain). Chris Brown is the coolest!

The reason why I gave it three stars.

1. The food was mediocre at best. The Jamaican food at the buffet was the only thing that had any real flavor and the jerk chicken cart was really good. The Jamaican Restaurant definitely had the best food. I expected more from them in the food department. The preferred club did have breakfast in the lounge and snacks all day. But if you don't catch it as soon as it comes out, you will find little fruit flies flying around the food at all times. Not really appealing.

2. Music - we were really expecting to hear some Jamaican steel drums and just any Jamaican music in general. That's part of the appeal of Jamaica...the amazing music. Well, there was none of that. When there was live music they preformed Adelle and Sade. Not that I don't like them, but that's not what I want to hear in Jamaica.

3. At night the beach club next door was playing really loud music. We were usually drained from the days in the sun and wanted to go to bed early. I had to wear ear plugs a couple of times which wasn't ideal.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank LinaF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2013

My husband and I stayed at Secrets St. James from may 12-19, 2013. We were there celebrating our 1 year anniversary and I must say "we had a blast". This was our 2nd stay at a Secrets Resort and I can't wait to plan our next trip.
The service was great!
We had the Best Maid ever; Maureen Wilson(room 3319)
The restaurants were good but the Best was the Japanese spot
We enjoyed the evening entertainment
The beach was excellent

  • Stayed May 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Pookiedoo72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SWO_STJconcierge, Manager at Secrets St. James Montego Bay, responded to this review, June 18, 2013
Dear Valued Guest:

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback with us and other future guests. It was our pleasure hosting you here at Secrets St. James and we do hope to be of service to you once again.

We are happy to know that you had ‘a blast’ on your second trip here with us and we also too are anxiously waiting for your 3rd visit. It is indeed great to hear that our team members provided you with excellent service and you enjoyed your dining experiences, beach and entertainment.

We look forward to your return as we can’t wait to welcome you back Home yet once again!

Best regards,
Christina Smith
E-concierge Assistant
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 3, 2013

We stayed 5/28/13-6/1/13 for a birthday trip with 4 of our friends. The staff there were super friendly and the service provided was excellent. Food was great and the alcohol selection was plenty. They even have fresh coconuts and sugar canes!!!! There is never a dull moment at the resort and always something to do. There is a small 24 hours casino. The game area had pool, ping pong, and chess. Water activities included kayaking, swimming, para sailing,water skiing, guided snorkel tour, and scuba diving. There is also volleyball, badminton, tennis, and basketball. The resort also had a theater with nightly entertainment. The spa was amazing. The three of us girls got facials and it was so relaxing.

I would highly recommend this resort if you are looking to be swept away and treated like royalty. This is by far one of the best vacations ever!!!!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank babeebec
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SWO_STJconcierge, Manager at Secrets St. James Montego Bay, responded to this review, June 6, 2013
Dear Valued Guest:

We thank you for making Secrets St James your vacation destination of choice and are happy to know this one was ‘by far the best vacation ever’.

We are indeed pleased that you enjoyed all the daily and nightly activities/entertainment offered to you and your friends as well as your spa services and food and beverage. Our team members take pleasure in ensuring that all our guests receive excellent service and it is thrilling to hear that they provided this excellence and were all ‘super friendly’.

We are grateful for the time taken to update us on your experience at Secrets St James and we are looking forward to a return visit as we wait to welcome you Home with big smiles from all our staff members.

Warmest regards,
Caulette Mornan
Social Networking/E-Concierge
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 3, 2013 via mobile

We stayed at Secrets in May for our honeymoon and I can honestly say that we did not want to leave. We booked through Thompson and after a terrible journey and very bad service from them we were expecting the worst! Thank goodness when we got to the hotel we were stunned! The staff were on hand to help with our luggage immediately, we were served rum punch while we waited to check in and our bags delivered to our room within minutes of us getting there. We upgraded to preferred when we got there and I have to say it was worth every penny, we weren't in the preferred building but we had the most amazing sea view and the room was simply beautiful. The food is out of this world and there is a huge choice, we loved the Japanese and French. Theme nights at the World Cafe are great and lobster night is not to be missed! The breakfast selection is massive, I have never seen anything like it, you are completely spoilt for choice and it caters for everyone's needs. For lunch the Jerk Chicken Man is a must, you have never tasted anything like it! The barefoot grill is great too. We found the staff to be very helpful, most would go out of their way to get you whatever you wanted and unlike what some people have said they do not expect a tip and are not rude if you don't. We tipped a lot as the people are worth tipping, $1 bills seem to be the best for around the pool and beach and maybe a couple more at dinner, we didn't tip everyone and the service was always at a very high standard. The evening entertainment at the piano bar is brilliant, plenty of room and a really nice atmosphere. Desires (the night club) is a great touch, we had a good few nights there and nursed some bad hangovers on the pictuersque beach! My husband booked a surprise candlelit dinner on the beach and it was amazing! The food was probably the best I've ever tried and the service out of this world; when we returned to the room they had decorated the bed with rose petals and run us a candlelit bath again with rose petals - such a lovely idea.
I was saddened to see some bad reviews on here, one in particular that mentioned about smokers around the beach and pool, that is no reason for a low rating, it has not baring on the hotel and its staff- some people are just impossible to please and will look for faults even when there are none to be found!
I could go on and on about how fantastic this place is but instead, if you are thinking of going then don't hold back you will not be disappointed!
'Yeh mon!'

Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Hollie24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Secrets St. James Montego Bay

Property: Secrets St. James Montego Bay
Address: Lot A59, Freeport, Montego Bay, 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 High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Business Hotel in Montego Bay
#8 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Montego Bay
#9 Romantic Hotel in Montego Bay
#10 Luxury Hotel in Montego Bay
#11 Family Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Secrets St. James Montego Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 350
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Secrets St James Hotel Montego Bay

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