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“Best Couples stay yet” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Couples Sans Souci

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Couples Sans Souci
Ranked #4 of 36 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Certificate of Excellence
UK
Level Contributor
80 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“Best Couples stay yet”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 19, 2012

First trip to Sans Souci after Tower Isle and Negril. The tried and tested all inclusive Couples formula still works perfectly - if it ain't broke, don't mend it - and this one struck just the right balance with a better beach than Tower Isle and less noise than Negril. Food and drink well up to expectation, Hibiscus Cottage a real delight up in the quiet part with a great sea view from the balcony, and a special mention for the watersports team (notably Ray) for their dedication over and above the call of duty on the private snorkelling trips.

Room Tip: Hibiscus Cottage is well worth considering - look out for special deals.
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  • Stayed December 2012, 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
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank DMCRH
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 (1,248)
Date | Rating
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English first
Lincoln Park, Michigan
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 19, 2012

very clean plenty to do , loved our room in C9, i recommend going to the al natural beach , we felt very comfortable . first time we ever did that. the people were very freindly, food great room service great , and the cats that live there in the breakfast nook were the cutest ever. we will go back in 2 years for 2 weeks this time ,we were there 10 days but wanted to stay longer. the baloon bar great with the piano , massages excellent , hot tubs too 3 of them , snorking, glass bottom boat ,skiing , sailing too very fun.the bartenders great every where .

Room Tip: C Block , only about 6 units great
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 diana r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bournemouth
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 17, 2012

We have just returned from this hotel. It was our first trip to Jamaica and to a Couples hotel. First impressions were not good as reception was shabby and the room (A34) an oceanview suite was not a lot better. Furniture and fittings very old and tired. This may have been a five star hotel in the past but the standard has not been maintained. If I had paid for it as 3 star I might have been quite happy. The Casanova Restaurant is outstanding both for service and food but it is only available in the evenings. The other restaurants are pretty average with limited choice and tepid food but the service is OK. All the staff here are happy, smiley people and do make the holiday. The facility to play golf at the nearby Sandals Golf Club is a great idea with transport provided. The Golf course itself, even when wet, is a good test of golf and very pretty with excellent caddy (compulsary) service. Do not bother with the shopping trip on a Tuesday as this goes to a purpose made shopping centre with nothing but jewelry stores and souvenier shops. The hotel closes all restaurants two nights a week to hold a Beach party and a Gala Night so you have no choice but to attend. Food pretty average like most buffets but presented nicely. There are two beaches but one is nude bathing so we only used the other. It is quite small but is sandy and clean and the drinks service is good. You will notice that the reviews for this resort differ quite substanially and this may be an age and experience thing. We have travelled a lot and stayed in many 4 and 5 star hotels and this I am afraid does not match up. It needs a fortune spending on it to bring it up to the standard it is claiming.

Room Tip: Rooms near the lobby are good for access to Casanova resaurant and bar and nightly entertainment but...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
15 Thank lazyjaneBournemouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seneca, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 10, 2012

My husband and I wanted to celebrate our 30th anniversary by taking a trip to Jamaica. After looking at a number of resorts we chose Couples San Souci. We wanted to celebrate some place with a little romance but also with some quiet time. We knew we wanted an all inclusive and adult only. Some of the resorts, we knew from past experience, would draw some people looking for fun which meant to us a little more noise than we wanted. Couples San Souci did not disappoint. Sure there were some flaws in the rooms from hurricanes etc. but that did not take away from the character of the resort. It was set on some cliffs so my suggestion would be to plan ahead which area of the resort you would like to stay in. We stayed in "B" block on the top floor and it was perfect for us. We did not want to deal with all the steps daily altough we did have the stairs leading from the bottom floor of our building to our room. We had a beautiful ocean view and was close to the beach and the restaurants and pool and bar. One concern we had was that we were limited to just 3 restaurants 1 of which was the only place for breakfast and 1 was limited to just dinner only but even that was not a problem. We certainly did not go hungry and there were no waits for a table when time to eat. They had functions 2 nights instead of eating at the restaurants themselves which also was enjoyable. I would recommend this to any couple looking for quiet, romantic time with their loved one as this is the place that can provide that and add great charm at the same time.

Room Tip: If you stay closer to Casanova restaurant and the main office you will have more stairs but offers...
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  • Stayed November 2012, 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?
11 Thank cjacoby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario
Level Contributor
32 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 8, 2012

My husband and I stayed at CSS November 8-22. Prior to leaving I contacted the resort because we were concerned after Sandy had hit. We had booked a Penthouse Suite and I had been told that they had been damaged. When I phoned I was told that yes the Penthouse Suites had been damaged so we would be given a Beach Front One Bedroom Suite and a refund for the difference. When I had made the booking the difference in price was just over $500.00. Imagine our surprise when we checked out and we only received a $180.00 refund!!!!

Arrived at the airport and breezed through to the Couples lounge. From the time we arrived at the gate to the time that we had our first Red Stripe was only about 40 minutes. We had arranged for a private transfer so we were on our way within 5 minutes. Our driver, Rohan, was great. He gave us a lot of new information about the island.

It was great to see Martin when we arrived. After we checked in Martin showed us what remained of the damage after Sandy before he took us to our room. We were in A building once again and it was nice to be back. The room was very clean as usual and there was flower petals on the bed which was a change from last year. We were told last year that the room attendants were no longer allowed to use the petals. Our mini bar was stocked with the items that we had requested when we did our pre-check in with Couples. Martin informed us of the changes to the re-stocking of the mini bar and we were very disappointed to find out that Couples in now charging for the higher end liquor and beer. $3.00 for a Red Stripe! Seriously??? Having to be in the room to sign when the mini bar was re-stocked was not a big deal. I don't think that we ever waited any longer than 10 minutes.

We spent our time at Sunset Beach. This area received massive damage during Sandy but the area was very good while we were there and they were continuing to work on the beach. The bathrooms were being redone while we were there so there were port a potties set up. I was rather upset when I first saw that but I have to commend Julianne (sp?) for the amazing job she did in keeping them spotless. The ground where they were put had been getting quite muddy so she would go to the beach every few days with a pail to get sand to put around them!
Taneisha, the bartender is an absolute joy! I have never seen anyone work as hard as she did the 2 weeks that we were there. I seldom saw her sitting down. We did have the misfortune of having Gloria as the bartender one day. After opening the bar she basically did nothing but sit at the bar reading and picking her face. There was a number of us that complained about her and we were told that she would not be back at SSB. We heard numerous complaints about her after she left. She was sent to the swim up bar and apparently was no better there. Rohan & Lovell kept the pool and area very clean. It was a pleasure being able to talk to them.

Hate to say it but that is it for the positive aspects of our vacation. Now for the cons:

Bars
As I have already said, you now have to pay for the higher end items in the mini bar. We really thought that we would be able to get our liquor of choice at the bars as we have every other year. Not so!!! Taneisha did her best to obtain what we drank and was usually successful, but there were many days that items would run out and she was not able to have them replenished. It was not through lack of trying on her part. We were not as successful at the other bars though. There was no such thing as fresh lime and bananas seemed to be in very short supply. It was just as bad with mixes.

Restaurants
Breakfast at Palazzina had a fairly good selection but more times than not the food was lukewarm. We found that the trays were not being replenished as quickly as they should be so guests would be standing and waiting for food. The egg station was quite good though. Service was hit & miss. Some days it would be excellent and others you would be lucky to get your tea or coffee.
Lunch was nice but we were disappointed that they had stopped the salad station except for once a week. I use to enjoy going and seeing what the salad for the day was. They only have the outdoor carving station once or twice a week now as well. Once again we found the food to be lukewarm.
We found dinner to be alright. Service was good but very slow. I like to take time and enjoy my meal but 2 hours for 3 courses is pushing it. The food was nice but not very memorable. Unlike last year the menu did change the second week we were there.

The Beach Grill was terrible!!!! We tried eating there twice and then refused to go back. Service was horrid. We waited over 40 minutes for a sandwich and fries and when we did receive it everything was cold. We sent it back and watched. The food was set out and we then waited an additional 15 minutes for our waiter to bring it to us. Needless to say it was cold again. I would be more understanding if it had been busy but there was only 6 tables being used and 3 waiters!!! We had the same experience the second time and decided not to try again.

Dinner at Casanova was very good and it was there that we had most of our dinners. The tenderloin was amazing. Once again though the service was very slow and it was closer to 3 hours to have your meal. There was 4 different times that our reservations were screwed up! They either had us down for a much later dinner (8:00) or not have us down at all. That was very frustrating.

Lunch at Sunset Beach was disappointing. Not once in the 2 weeks we were there did they even attempt to keep the food warm with sterno burners like they have other years. If you didn't get your food as soon as it got there you had cold food and took the chance on food poisoning!

The specialty dinners looked beautiful. (Starlight Gala, Beach Party & Repeaters Dinner) The amount of work that go into these every week is amazing. Unfortunately the food fell short. Once again the food was lukewarm and they seemed to run out of items before everyone had been around the first time. After the first week we decided to skip these and get room service. I think it says something when room service food is hotter than the dinners. I think that some of the best food we had was at the Managers Cocktail Party.

Room service was good and the food arrived quickly and hot! We were disappointed though in the cuts that they made to the menu. You can no longer get a steak for example. In past years we loved having a nice dinner on our balcony. Now it's sandwiches.

It is very upsetting to see how bad the staff morale is. 99% of them work very hard and do not seem to be appreciated by management!!! We have many friends on staff and know for a fact that they do NOT receive monthly bonuses in lieu of tips!!!! After Sandy everyone was asked to work 7 days in order to get the resort back in shape. When they received their pay cheques they were paid for 6 days not 7!!! Trainees at the resort do not get paid. There is a young woman that we met last year who was in training. We returned this year and she is still in training. I cannot believe that they would have someone work for them for a year without pay. Jobs are in very short supply in Jamaica and the staff do not have a lot of options. Practically everyone that we spoke with would love to leave Couples but unfortunately there are no other jobs for them.

We had almost decided not to return to CSS this year because we had found so many changes last year that were not good. We can honestly say that we are glad that we went back because now there is not doubt in our minds that we will not return. We were also given the chance to tell our friends on staff that we will not be returning but not through any fault of theirs! We are actually looking into private rentals in the Ocho Rios area so that we can associate with the staff members without them taking the risk of being dismissed from Couples. We are not the only guests that feel the way that we do. There was at least 6 other couples that have decided not to return.
We are looking forward to our next vacation in Jamaica, it just won't be at CSS or any other Couples Resort!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
28 Thank beloro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kalamazoo, Michigan, United States
Level Contributor
166 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 8, 2012

There are not enough adjectives to describe the trip of a lifetime and one that we will make time for each year! We have been married almost 28 years and have 3 grown children and only dreamed of a trip like this until our friends suggested it. On one hand we thought why didn't we do it sooner, but I don't think we would have enjoyed it to the capacity we did. Never ever being at an all-inclusive I have nothing to compare it to, only that everyone we spoke with during our trip said, we were at the best brand and resort! Each and every staff member was pleasant, courteous and made each meal, drink and experience magical. The lobster night, Manager's welcome cocktail party, Starlight Gala and Beach Party (moved inside) were magnificent! The presentation of the food was almost as fun as consuming it. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!! We will return!!

Room Tip: We stayed in a one-bedroom beachfront suite in the "A Block". Overlooked the swim-up bar...
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  • Stayed November 2012, 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 Dawn M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 8, 2012 via mobile

I will start by saying that this was our third visit to a couples owned property and by far our worst. We have enjoyed visits to Couples Swept Away and Tower Isle in the past so much that we obviously booked another Couples vacation. While we will likely come back to Jamaica in the future and probably at a Couples resort it won't be at Sans Souci and I would not recommend it to anyone.

First the good, the beaches and atmosphere are very relaxing and just what we expected of our visit. We visited in the first week of December so there were still some clean up efforts going on from the hurricane but that had no negative impact on our trip. The staff as always were very friendly and helpful and the food at the restaurants good save the Friday night gala which is discussed more in detail below

Now the bad or at least the substandard compared to our other couples visits. The overall management of the resort is severely lacking. As others have commented the buffet meals can be a challenge as they run out of plates and cups quite often. The requirement that you be in your room to have the mini bar restocked is equally inconvenient. Those issues in and of themselves wouldn't warrant a negative review, however our experience at the Friday night gala event was so bad it really ruined an otherwise positive experience.

The gala is effectively a mandatory event that they put on every week, all the restaurants are closed so that is your option for dinner. It's was the most uncouples experience I can imagine. The mandatory event has a dress code that prohibits shorts and jeans. At all couples some restaurants will have varying levels of dress code but you always have the freedom to not eat at the restaurant if you don't want to wear dress shoes and long pants. At the gala everyone is seated at the same time rather than being free to take a later seating and management is apparently unable to properly accommodate everyone at once. The lines for the buffet style food were long, assuming you could find a plate as they ran out about 10 mins into the event. Assuming you could find a plate you had to check they were clean, something I have never experienced at couples. The service was dreadfully slow, a roast pig was carved one portion at a time making the line too long. If you didn't get in line early enough the pork was rationed as they ultimately ran out. I tried to get red wine at the bar was told they had no glasses hold on a minute then told they had no red wine because wine servers were taking care of tables, we had been seated for over 30 mins at this point without a server coming to our table. Overall the food was substandard for this one meal.

The general manager appeared to spend more time at the gala socializing with guests than he did ensuring that his team provided enough plates and glasses for this mandatory event. This is an event that occurs every week and was so poorly done I can come up with no excuse or justification in my mind for it. At the repeaters dinner we were told that the GM had been with Sans Souci since before Couples bought it, if that is true maybe it is time for a change. It was almost as if the good food and service we had received the entire week disappeared for this event, my wife commented that it was so inefficient that maybe it is a hold over from when the resort was under different ownership.

At any rate we will not return to Sans Souci and do not recommend it to anyone. We have had the benefit of very good Couples resort experiences in the past and wouldn't want a first timer to judge Jamaica on this resort.

Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
15 Thank M T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Couples Sans Souci

Property: Couples Sans Souci
Address: Route A3, St-Mary | PO Box 103, 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 Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#6 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Couples Sans Souci 4.5*
Number of rooms: 150
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on the cliffs of Jamaica’s emerald coast above a dazzling stretch of Caribbean, Couples Sans Souci beckons you to surrender mind, body and soul. The resort's 'no worries' mantra comes to life as every day unfolds. Lose yourself exploring secluded stone pathways. Melt away stress in the healing natural mineral springs. Feel a rush of exhilaration scaling Dunn's River waterfalls. Or simply drift asleep in a hammock by the sea. Located in vibrant Ocho Rios, the resort's design pays tribute to an understated colonial elegance—intricate latticework, white woven furnishings and feathered palms set a refined stage for your island escape. Dining options abound—from authentic Jamaican fare to five-star international cuisine. Private cabanas at cliff's edge provide the ideal setting for our signature spa treatments, while the choice of resort activities knows no limits. Learn the art of living well while living in the moment at Couples Sans Souci. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Couples Sans Souci Hotel Ocho Rios
Couples San Souci
Couples Sans Souci Ocho Rios
Couples Sans Souci Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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