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Sandals Ochi Beach Resort
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      4,439 - 4,444 of 9,027 reviews
      Reviewed March 17, 2014

      This was our 5th Sandals stay, with Sandals Whitehouse as our favorite resort to date. We always go with an open mind and try not to compare resorts as they are all different in their own unique way. A large group of us went for a wedding which was beautifully done and was above the Bride’s expectations. The resort accommodated all of us for dinner each night. We had read reviews of the awful food, not sure where those people ate, but we all hit just about every restaurant and snack shack. All 12 of us loved the food and were overly impressed. Our first time attending the SSG dinner and was so amazed at the quality and presentation of the dinner. Chef Dwayne at the omelet station had a huge smile every morning and was so pleasant to talk too. We never waited for a bus to transport us between sides more than a minute or two. We did mention to the Great House Manager, Vishal that our bed was not as soft as the Whitehouse beds. That night we had a mattress topper on our bed and he stated if it was not soft enough, a new mattress would be delivered. WOW…that was service! Vishal was visibly seen around the resort all week long, checking areas out, picking up trash and asking us daily if we needed anything. Vishal clearly has a pulse on the resort by his daily actions. Kudos to him! We also received a phone call from Vishal when we got home…impressive. The large group of us had so much fun at the Great House pool, bartenders Alex and Kirk kept us in stitches laughing at their antics. Playmaker, Natallia was a hoot and had great fun playing her games. Our expectations of the resort were met above and beyond. Our only complaints were with the Great House pool. Most mornings there were no towels to be seen anywhere. Guests literally took the pool floats to their chairs first thing in the morning. These floats are for all to use and not just “yours” for the day. We booked one of the lowest category rooms, the Great House Ocean View, Rm. 7117, fantastic view. I did notice the room lacked drawer space, since they put in the flat screens; the TV armoire is gone which had huge drawers. Our whole group said we had the best view out of all of the others and they all had higher room categories. We were the only couple that had Ruth Demuth from TripGuy Travel as our TA. This was our first time using Ruth and we noticed immediately managements interest in us having a wonderful time. Coincidence, we think not. Most of our group was first timers; we have all planned a trip back to Sandals for 2016 and quote “we want your TA to book all of us”. Lastly, please get to know the service people, they are friendly, great sense of humor and just plain fun. And this is why we go to Jamaica every year and stay at a Sandals.

      • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
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      11  Thank zazolo
      This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
      Reviewed March 17, 2014

      Having spent my honeymoon at sandals grande riviera I can safely say that if you are looking for paradise then you won't find it here. I have visited many Caribbean islands but never before had the opportunity to stay at a sandals resort. As this was a special occasion we thought we would push the boat out and stay at what is portrayed as the "best" We trusted the brand, sandals and were extremely excited to go there.
      On arrival at the the airport in Jamaica we were dismayed to find the plush luxury car we had booked was not there to meet us. We were advised to use the shuttle bus instead as it would take approx 2 hours for our car to reach us from the resort and then the 2 hour transfer time. We decided to board the bus as we just wanted to get there ASAP but we were not refunded for the car we had paid for in advance.

      The resort itself was nice enough however the food was absolutely abysmal! It was by far the worst food I have ever had the misfortune to taste. The fish was terrible in all restaurants on the complex. It was frozen and not fresh. Very strong smelling and just disgusting. The meat dishes were better but served cold on every occasion. On our first night we had a table booked for 8.30 at Kellys dockside but were not actually seated till 9.15. We were then told that because we were eating late that there was very limited choice available and when serving our main course the waiter informed me that the side dish I had ordered had ran out. He did not offer me any alternative, just walked away leaving me with just a small piece of snapper. The snapper was indelible, freezing cold in the middle so I ate nothing. Very disappointing. We did meet with the food and beverage manager who did show sincere concern but he was powerless to the situation and had many complaints to deal with.
      The staff at the resort tried their best to be helpful but seemed tired and lacklustre. I felt as though they just couldn't be bothered. Service painfully slow. One girl on reception was very rude to my husband when our keycard for our room door stopped working.

      Our butlers were great, we really enjoyed a laugh with them and they will make anything happen to please you. It's such a shame for them that the things that need fixing are so beyond their control. No complaints there, they do a great job.

      In my opinion this resort is a 3 star at best. Won't ever return to sandals

      Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
      6  Thank L B
      This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
      Cassie C, Review Coordinator at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded March 22, 2014

      We're so sorry to read that we did not meet your expectations during your stay. This is certainly not our standard and we would like to correct the situation and make things right. We hope that you will afford us the opportunity to turn this around. 



      Thank you for your feedback. I look forward to making contact with you regarding this matter very soon.

      Report response as inappropriate
      This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
      Reviewed March 16, 2014

      We have enjoyed many all inclusive resorts. This resort really lived up to its advertising of being able to pamper you, and have very personal attention in a spot with fantastic weather. An all inclusive where even the golf is included. The course is a tournament quality course. 15 restaurants on site, so you are never stuck with just the general buffet. Staff love their role and enjoy delivering great personal service. The beach is broken up into three areas to accommodate any type of beach or water activity you want. The staff are great at instruction on any of the water activities or equipment. We found real fantastic service providers in many areas of the resort. Evening resort manager, Shane, hostess' sand wait staff if the restaraunts, such as Jadea, Timerra, Nathalie, and many of the staff at the golf course. The resort offers every type of accommodation or service level you desire, from dedicated Butler service, to floor concierge, or basic luxury. You have a choice of beach front, garden living, or beautiful pool area accommodation. Well worth every penny!

      • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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      1  Thank surf_seekers
      This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
      Reviewed March 16, 2014

      Thank you Tami Pruitt of Trip Surfer Vacations for yet another wonderful vacation! My husband and I just returned from 6 nights at this resort. We love AI resorts and have traveled to Secrets Montego Bay, Excellence Punta Cana, Valentin Imperial Maya and The Royal before trying Sandals. We booked a concierge honeymoon villa on the Riviera side but were upgraded to a butler villa on the Manor side due to occupancy levels. Jeremy and Richard were our butlers for the week and provided AMAZING service!

      Here's some tips and things to consider before going:
      -know which side of the resort you are booking and be aware of how large the resort is. It can house up to 700 some guests. We were told it was 98% full during our stay. We had no problem staying in the villa on the mountainside but could see how if you didn't do your research you may be surprised and not ok with relying on golf carts and shuttles to get around. I could see where the entire resort could be challenging to navigate for those who are mobility challenged.
      -shuttles run about every 5-10 minutes with 3 stops: Ochi beach, Riviera lobby, Manor lobby. Golf carts are for the butlers to retrieve guests from the villas and the jitneys are for butler guests to take to the Riviera side and not wait for the shuttle.
      -water is safe to drink and they highly recommend it. If you drink a lot of water, it will be difficult to get your hands on enough of it. There are bottles in your room, but you have to ask for extras. There are not coolers filled with bottles throughout the resort like we saw at Secrets. You can ask the bartenders at the pool/on the beach but they seem annoyed and give you small 2" glasses of it. Even if you do not usually bring a buba keg for your drinks, I highly recommend something for your ice water.
      -Food was good but not great. I would give it 3-4 stars but certainly not 5. The best breakfast is China Doll (ala carte) or order room service. The pizza places are great for a quick lunch without having to dress properly after being in the pool or on the beach. If you have butler service, have them bring you lunch. Dinner has 10 options with Kelley's being hard to get into. Valentinos and Kimonos require resort dress, all others resort casual dress. Room service at night for a snack or dessert was also great. Soft serve ice cream machines were a nice touch and great for an afternoon cool down.
      -Butlers cannot save loungers or floats for you. With 98% occupancy, it was difficult to find chairs most days. You must get up early to get a good chair. Most of the crowd is older so they get up early and take all the good spots. On some cases we just had to pile our stuff up in a corner, or a wall or etc and get in the pool.
      -The ride from the airport to the resort is 1:45 and they stop at a roadside bar & grill to go to the restroom and get a snack. Be prepared to sit there 20 minutes in a parking lot while others smoke and get a drink. Not bad, just takes a while to get there. The road is in good shape from Montego Bay and follows the coastline most of your ride.
      -Ocho Rios is in the mountainside and is quite tropical compared to other parts of Jamaica, which means it will rain some days but only for a bit. The beach is not wide, long and full of white sand. There are small maintained beach coves that have calm waters for swimming but no long beaches to stroll.

      Here are a few things we loved about the resort:
      -plenty of activities to chose from: snorkeling, glass bottom boat, kayaking, sailing, etc all included. There are more options that you can book for a cost too. We didn't do it but it was neat that the catamaran leaves right from the pier for Dunns River Falls and snorkeling. Also a rock climbing wall and plenty of fitness activities if you wish to enjoy.
      -so many pools and beach areas to choose from each day. Our villa pool was great for having our own spot and not going to the large pool. The manor pool is huge and has some really neat water seats/tables/umbrellas. You can find a quiet spot or get in the action and party. The beach is not wide, white sand and soft but there are great coves for swimming. Be careful of the rocks at the Ochi Beach.
      -Butlers: Jeremy and Richard were awesome. Plenty of surprises at turndown and after the beach. We loved our afternoon cheese and fruit trays. They often brought us a surprise lunch and drink of the day without us asking. They went above and beyond to please us and ensure our stay was enjoyable. We missed the Chocolate Party due to our dinner reservations, but they brought a sample plate and put in the room at turndown!
      -Dinners were good. We tried China Doll, Sabrinas, Kelley's, Soy, Valentinos, and Bayside. Our best dinners with larger portions were Kelley's, Valentinos and Bayside.I highly recommend filling out your weekly planner upon arrival and then your concierge or butler will reserve times for all your dinners and activities. This made our reservation process easy. They also booked our spa appointments and called to make sure we were on time and ready for our booked events.
      -Check in and check out were a piece of cake and much easier and less time consuming than other resorts we've been to. We checked out at 10:30 and had pick up at 11:00 for a 3:00 flight. We had plenty of time this year to get through the airport and eat after the trip to the airport. Thanks for giving us enough time without sending us 6 hours before the flight to hang out in the airport.

      I'd also like to mention a few of our favorite servers: Denham at Valentino's was amazing (you should make him a butler), Assain at Bayside has great service skills and is so pleasant, Simon at the Watersports was a great sailing instructor and glass bottom boat captain, Oswald the bartender was on top of his service.

      The Sandals lounge at the airport is great for a restroom trip and a cold drink after your flight. They confirm your reservation, tag your luggage and let you wait for your shuttle. We barely waited 20 minutes and were off to the shuttle. Snacks would be an added touch for them to offer. Please note the red hat porters take your bags from the Sandals lounge and load them into the shuttle. This is not optional, and mandated by Sandals so be prepared to tip them, as well as your shuttle driver when you arrive to the resort. Same thing on the return trip. The red hats swarm your shuttle and want to take your bags to the ticket line for another tip.

      A few other tips:
      -get to the chocolate party early if you want to partake. It starts at 8:30 at the Manor lobby and ended by 9:30 during our trip. The live band plays there in the parking lot area until 10:30 as a part of the White Party. This is also the same night as the returning guests dinner.
      -Friday night is the beach party at Ochi Beach. Most restaurants will be closed so plan your dinner accordingly.
      -Towels are hard to come by and most guests take 3-4 for the entire day. Stock up when you find some and save for the next day. We found if we got up early there weren't towels yet to put on our chairs. This is also good for having at your villa for your personal pool.

      Overall, a great first trip to Sandals and we will look at returning to another one of their resorts in the future. I hope these tips help those thinking about going or preparing for their upcoming trip!

      Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
      9  Thank jennaWVU
      This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
      Reviewed March 16, 2014

      This place was so awesome! There are not enough reviews about the cottages. They are the best location there. Ocean front can be a little noisy and not as private. We had a 1 minute walk to the fabulous breakfast buffet and the beach along a beautiful walk way. There is a private pool and hot tub right next to the cottages. Plantation like shutter doors. Which my husband would have opened when I woke up in the morning. Such greenery and flowers to see 1st thing in the morning makes you jump out of bed! Chad was our main concierge. He was fantastic! Don't think you need a butler when they do everything for you. Jerod the bell hop was the friendliest guy you can meet. And Richard the electrician. We didn't need his services but we loved talking to him. The reggae guy on Tuesday nights is fantastic! Wish the band would have him more often. Was disappointed it wasn't him for the white party. We did have problems when we arrived. Huge bee nest on our patio. Ceiling fan was so messed up it seemed like it would fall on us. Within 30 minutes they had everything fixed! No problem! Dinner wasn't great but I didn't go there for that. Breakfast and lunch at the grill was fantastic. People that complain the ocean isn't deep enough, just go to the ochi beach. It is over your head. Most beautiful water ever! We snorkeled right there and saw so many awesome things. Booze cruise to dunns river is a must to do. I would go back in a heartbeat! They have awesome cocktail waitresses that bring you your drinks right on the beach. The BEST Saniqua Roberts! Love her! If you don't want to buy souvineers from Sandals, There are Jamaican's selling hand crafted things at the edge of the resort. That is where I bought really cool things. Love Sandals but I would rather buy from the Jamaicans! All in all, you can't beat this resort!

      Room Tip: Cottages. Close to everything with privacy
      • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
        • Value
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      3  Thank saidiePa
      This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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