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“Quaint, relaxing, quiet - good food, good service, good value” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Shaw Park Beach Hotel & Spa

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Shaw Park Beach Hotel & Spa
Ranked #29 of 36 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Rimouski, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Quaint, relaxing, quiet - good food, good service, good value”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 16, 2013

Ok, first of all to comment on the reviews which point to this hotel as being "dated". Yes, it is dated, in the sense that it is old and charming in its decor, which is a plus in my mind. However, the reviewers are commenting on its perceived need of painting and sprucing up. This is definitely true, however for me, that doesn't matter. We were with Sunwing, with what they described as "Superior Room". The room was modern, 2nd floor, facing the beach with a balcony. Great view. The resort is situated on a private beach. You can't walk for "miles/kilometres" but the secluded private nature of the beach makes up for that. The air conditioning was modern and one of the best functioning units I've seen in the Caribbean. I've read some comments about variety of food being a problem. I didn't find this at all. There was always a choice of fish or beef or pork dishes. For a 3 1/2 star resort, the food was 5 star in my book. The only complaint I would have is that they could make a greater effort to utilize the heating underneath the food pans to keep the food a little warmer throughout the entire meal sitting. Other than that, no complaints. Food is great. It was one of the reasons we chose this resort, that is, the comments about the food were generally leaning towards very good. I have to concur, 100%. Very tasty, yes, Jamaican jerk is a common theme, but it wasn't just all that. The chef does an excellent job of providing variety within the constraints of being a smaller hotel. There was always salad at the salad station. The ambiance of this place cannot be understated. If you are total party type, forget this place. If you like a quiet place where you can relax, get to know people if you want to, mingle with other guests freely, again, only if you want to, then this place is idea. We met a musical couple from the Montreal area who both entertained us on the grand piano in the lobby (even though there's a sign saying please don't play the piano -- nobody cared, and no one stopped us or interrupted). The staff is laid back. They watch out for security, but let you do your thing. The staff are very friendly and treat you right. Kelly does a great job on the beach with the equipment and life-guarding. Overall the experience was extremely positive for us. We would go back there. You know, if there's some painting needed or decorative touch applied here and there, it's not important in the overall scheme of things. Cleanliness, friendliness of staff, beach, food and ambiance, these are things that matter, and the SPBH has all of that. I gave it a 5 star to counteract all the negative reviews from the whiners (who obviously read these reviews before they go, and so still chose to go :-)). It's really a 3 1/2 star as ratings go, but the cleanliness of rooms and maid service, 5 star, food, 5 star for taste and preparation in my book (just the warming thing), ambiance 5 star, beach lovely and 5 star, what more do you need. Overall appearance and state of repari and upgrading, less than 5 star. If you don't like the noisy party scene, 5 star definitely.

  • Stayed March 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
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank RikiEric
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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505 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (89)
Date | Rating
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English first
Peterborough, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2013

Just returned from weeks stay at this hotel. First the good. Beachfront rooms are steps to beach. Rooms are clean, no bugs. Food is good but variety is an issue. Nice for a quiet vacation.
This hotel is dated and tired, in need of major upgrades. The pool was unusable for our entire stay, simply because no one bothered to clean it no matter how many times we questioned the staff. The terrace and bar area has very outdated and broken, uncomfortable wooden chairs that have been repaired many times. No matter how hard we tried we could not get staff to play music around bar to liven things up a bit. Bar staff will not leave bar area to serve drinks unless a tour from cruise ship arrives and then they serve people on tour and ignore regular hotel guests. Rooms had an ongoing issue with hot water and no water for an entire afternoon. While rooms are clean be prepared for no counter space in bathrooms for toiletries.
This is not a 3 and half star hotel.i would only recommend it if upgrades were completed.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Kevin T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2013

Stayed at shaw park from Feb 26 to Mar 5 2013 with my wife, were picked up from Kingston airport by Karandatours who were absolutely brillant with the service. Arrived at the resort in the late evening and were checked in very quickly with a refreshing drink waiting for us. We had a standard room which was spacious and faced the beach. The room itself could needed a facelift as with the rest of the hotel, not complaining but the place was situated on a beautiful resort but could of done with repainting. There is no fridge or coffee machine in the rooms but that was not a problem for us. The bathroom was clean and the plumbing on some days was unreliable, then again something that really did not bother us, staff responded quickly and advised us of problems with the mains. Overall any issues we had were dealt with very quickly. This is not a 5 start place but the staff were absolutely brillant, William, Smiley, Conroy who all worked in the bar were great to be around. Very polite and very googd with the service they provided. They certainly had a great relationship with all the guests. The staff in the restaurant were also great, Tina, Tanya, Sonia, Miguel all made sure we were looked after. In fact all the staff including the chefs, staff at reception, the managers were very friendly and very helpfull. All rooms face the ocean and this resort is really ideal for couples looking for a relaxing holiday, that's what we wanted, just relax on the beach and by the pool and not being hassled to do anything else. That's what we got and it may not be what you want if you want a more exciting break. The food on the whole was good but I must admit that other resorts we have stayed in Antigua and St Lucia have offered more choice. It's not negative but generally the selections were not varied enough. The entertainment was not bad, it's what you generally get at all the resorts.
What made our stay great were the staff, the service and also the other guests. By the way the hotel did cater for cruise ships, people would turn up between 12:00 and 2:00 pm to eat and relax on the beach, usually in three groups with each group staying for 45 mins before the next would turn up. Was not a problem really as it just made the day more interesting, only a problem if you wanted to eat during these times.
This place is not really for the young, I think I only saw one couple with a young child. Most of the clients were couples and I would say a large percentage were over the 40 yr age group, thats probably why we enjoyed it so much. To sum it up, good resort which could do with a facelift, staff were brillant and we would defintely go back given the oppurtunity.

Room Tip: All rooms face the ocean but a room closer to reception would be ideal. Security would be better.
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank jp7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quebec City, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 17, 2013

We stayed at Shaw Park from Jan.18 to Jan. 25 2013.

First I would like to say not to rely on all the travellers photos prior to 2011 as many things has changed such as the main bar, beach chairs, umbrellas have been changed and/or renovated. While we were there some exterior painting was being done and I was told that they were preparing for a photo shoot.

We arrived at SP six hours later than was scheduled but that's another story with Sunwing which by the way has disappointed us again!

Ok, back to SP, check in was quick and we were courteously greeted, signed in and told to follow the porter/bell boy "Speedy" who took us to our room.

We had a deluxe room with very standard decor yet very colourful. We alway had hot water and the pressure was good, not excellent but ok. The bed was very comfortable. Bring your own shampoo and hair dryer. There is no fridge and no coffee machine in the rooms. (I had my own one cup travel coffee machine). The only thing I missed was a bit more counter space in the bathroom but it was ok.

Don't forget this is a three star so go with an open mind and you won't regret your stay! If you prefer to stay in 5 star resorts when you travel, then this place is not for you.

The decor is old country style. This is a simple, beautiful, fun place to stay and we loved the laid back atmosphere. The grounds are clean and beautiful. All rooms face the ocean. You fall asleep and wake up to the sound of the waves. Location and security is very good.

The food is delicious and tasty with varied selections. I can't believe the negative reviews! Yes it's true there is always pasta in the buffet but prepared differently every time. There is breakfast, lunch, then at 3:00 pm BBQ hamburgs, hotdogs & fries. Then, dinner at 7:00pm with entertainment (sax player, reggae band, two singers Danny & ? who sing at your table while you dine). There was one A La Carte during our stay and it was delicious.
Tip for breakfast: Ask your waiter for an order of bacon as there is none in the buffet. Also, start by putting your bread in the toaster before going to the buffet as the toasters are very slow. lol

As for the cruise shops that stop at the resort, it's ok... they add tables at the far end of the dining area and there is plenty of food. Did not bother us at all and did not cause any line ups. (They were there only twice in the week we were there)

They have a beautiful sit down lounge with a bar but it's closed. Don't know why but it would give the resort a +++

The waiters and bartenders are so friendly, energetic, always smiling and you can feel they are very happy to work at SP. They do not have a "wait for tip attitude" though... please tip for good service! Smiley and Willie we miss you!

And Kelly, she takes care of the kayaking and lifeguard at the beach and pool, she never stops! Always making sure everything is ok and that you are enjoying your tan! (which is what she says, so cute!). She is so adorable! As Stephy says in her review, "give her a nice tip for her service!".

Most of us on the resort were 40+ years old. I would not recommend this resort if you want to party all night. The bar closes at 11:00pm but there was one night we had Danny the guitar player and singer with us and a bunch of us reunited together and the bar stayed open til midnight. Danny sings at tables at dinner time with his partner (twice a week). We all pitched in for the memorable entertainment he has given us way past his duty! When Danny goes at your table and asks if you have a request... ask him to sing "Hotel Ocho Rios" (version of Hotel California). Thank you Danny!

You can enjoy lots of sun and/or shade under the palm trees. The beach is very clean. As of 6:30am the groundkeepers are raking and the beautiful sandy beach awaits for you! And there is plenty of beach chairs. As for the ocean, there is a slight drop after walking a few feet in. Reason I mention is for children supervision but I must say I did not see any children during our stay...

I cannot comment on the pool as we are beach lovers but it seemed quiet, nothing fancy, not to many people, nice place to relax.

Bring your own travel mugs as the drinks are served in small plastic glasses which by the way I've seen at 5* resorts.

My husband helped the local fisherman bring in their catch every morning. Many of us at the resort pitched in and we collected enough $$ to buy them "part" of the sides of their fish net which was all torn. Herby who is so nice is the lead fisherman with his father and two helpers.
They really work hard for not much. We went to town at the marina with Herby and purchased the net and a roll of string for repair! They could use a new pair of paddles...

To sum things up... We loved this resort and will definately go back!!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
14 Thank Rocky960
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 16, 2013

I have been to Shaw Park Ocho Rios for the last new year eve vacation This place is by far the worst I ever stayed in the my trips in Jamaica. Hotel and rooms needs urgent repair and a little bit of love by the owner. Just don't understand the good reviews posted on this site. Entertainment from animation staff was poor and beach equipment was simply inexistant. A few sea kayaks with old paddles...and a wrecked wind surf board. Beach and view is nice but don't expect to take long walks ! end of the beach reaches a river were locals are just all over you to buy some local Ganja and any service you did not ask for....just harassing !
Food at the only restaurant from the hotel is always the same, day after day, so they make sure there are no surprises. Nightly entertainment from singers at dinner was fine.

Hotel staff is nice and smiling but don't have much experience. We waited about 90 minutes for our meals during The A la carte dinner we had on the first night ! and did not get what we have order....

Rooms are clean and have a great view on the bay. But doesn't make up for the overall bad experience.

Room Tip: Make sure you book a room with a view on the ocean
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank bdiaz_48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saskatoon, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2013

We stayed at Shaw Park Jan 25th-Feb 9th we had a standard room that had a shower only and ended up having a plumbing problem on day 3 that couldn't be fixed right away so they gave us an upgrade to a deluxe room that had a full bathroom. We had a fantastic trip because the resort is small and intimate you really do get to meet all the staff and guests and we did make some lifelong friends in our time there. If I had to find something negative to say it would be that the food gets to be very repetitive on tues,wed,and thurs people come off cruise ships and although there was plenty of food it was the same menu for lunch all 3 of those days, also there are no a la cartes and absolutely no seafood except fish. This resort is for people just looking for a nice quiet place where you can step from your room to the beach and go to bed early and where you can meet all sorts of wonderful people.

  • Stayed February 2013, 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?
7 Thank traveller7774
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 15, 2013

We spent two weeks a Shaw Park (Jan 25-Feb 8) and overall we were impressed with many aspects of the resort. Our room was very nice with a great balcony and an incredible view. The room was clean and comfortable. We had a leaky faucet in the shower which really wasn't a problem and on one occasion there was no hot water. The beach is fantastic, uncrowded (an understatement if there ever was one as there were very few people staying at the resort) and couldn't be easier to access. The lack of guests at the resort made it difficult for staff to organize any activities (billiards, table tennis, volleyball etc) so if that was a big priority you would be disappointed.
My biggest complaint with the resort was the limited food selection and again perhaps the lack of registered guests is the cause or result of that. If you are a meat and potatoes man, get ready to eat a lot of pasta.
As other reviewers have mentioned Shaw Park attracts numerous cruise ship passengers. The resort serves an authentic Jamaican lunch whenever the cruise ships are in port and the menu was basically the same every time featuring of course Jerk Chicken. Like most things it's good in moderation but gets tired.
There is no ala carte to speak of, for Sunwing customers we were entitled to one menu service per week and there were only three entrees to choose from. (fish, turkey and pepper steak) We did learn toward the end of our stay however that there is a limited menu that you can order from. Also bacon is available at breakfast but you have to order it directly from your server.

Stayed January 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Rod M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Shaw Park Beach Hotel & Spa

Property: Shaw Park Beach Hotel & Spa
Address: Cutlass Bay, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#13 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Shaw Park Beach Hotel & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 94
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Also Known As:
Shaw Park Beach Hotel And Spa
Shaw Park Beach Hotel Ocho Rios
Shaw Park Jamaica
Shaw Park Beach Ocho Rios
Shaw Park Hotel Jamaica
Shaw Park Beach Hotel & Spa Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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