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ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios
Ranked #8 of 35 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Reviewed May 6, 2013

Just got home from two wonderful weeks in the sun.
What can I say like all Riu Hotels they certainly stand out from the other hotels. Massive and lilac and White. Beautiful gardens always so immaculate. When we first got there the large open foyer hits you with open sea views. Spectacular !! Then no welcome cocktail, what's happening. Was quickly given room key no upgrade this time though was given top floor with Garden and Ocean view. Perfect after a 24 hr journey it was 4 pm. We took bathing suits in our hand luggage as our luggage hadn't been brought to room yet we thought why wait got dressed went straight for afternoon dip in the large pool had a cocktail then went for a walk along the wonderful beach. Not enough is made of this beach it is long with white sands beautiful turquoise waters and once you under very warm. Even the ganger guys on the beach are funny just say no and they leave you alone no problemI have got to say i did not see any cockroaches. As other guests commented on. What i did see was people not showing any respect for other people by leaving plates of food in the open hallways to the rooms which did cause ants. This hotel is stunning and all the staff worked so hard to keep clean, they are always cleaning. We really enjoyed our visit. Clean room we had two double beds pushed together. It was so hot we were glad to have a bed each at times. Good choice of optics in room and soft drinks and beer in a great really cool fridge. Had problems with ice machines in our block sometimes they worked sometimes they didn't. Food in hotel what can i say large buffet for breakfast with everything you could think off. Stunning pancakes my favourite with chocolate spread. was disappointed though no champagne at breakfast or any other time first time at a Riu this has happened to us. . Lunch choice of four places to eat buffet by the smaller pool in the steakhouse. Jerk hut on the beach. Larger buffet in the Plantation restaurant over by the larger pool . Then the Italian in the Foyer which was open from 12 each day until gone midnight with pizzas and pastas salads and desserts.Then evening meals in the large main buffet St Ann's always a good choice of foods, Meats, fish, chicken, goat, pizzas, salads loved the salads always so much choice. Lots of choice, veg cooked a little to little for me but great for most people. Wine well was OK not the best though as we like wine with our meals had to be done. The staff there worked very hard. Other restaurants why people que at 10 in the morning beats me. We just went up off the beach to book about 12 o clock booked the steakhouse and Asian first day for that week had to go back the next day to book Gourmet no problems though We arrived on the Saturday went Asian on the Sunday which we enjoyed all self service though, which is a shame. Steakhouse on the Wed well what can i say slow. Not the staff's fault just not enough of them they worked very hard we had a 9 pm sitting and got our first glass of wine at 10.. Plus menu said jacket potatoes and we had mash ? what's that about ! plus said choice of two desserts cheesecake and another can't remember now neither was offered though had a choice to pick which was normal fair as lunchtime buffet there not good. Would not recommend this restaurant. We went to gourmet on the Thu. Excellent great service great food. We went to this one and the Asian twice. Entertainment staff work really hard and really try to get to talk to everybody. They are so full of energy i hot tired just watching them lol. Monday beach party days are great fun to watch or join in. The dance routine is amazing especially when everyone joins in. We also enjoyed the Steel band that comes in on a tue. Same shows same days each week so if you go for two weeks gets repetitive. The bars are close together just off main foyer we though the Dunns River bar served the best quality there cosmopolitans the strongest.the others not so good weak we would say. We have stayed at a few Riu Hotels now and this is the first time we have been disappointed Margaritas week chocolate Martinis not good No champagne.. The icy drinks Miami vice and Dr Funks were quite good. We must say that as we loved the beach in the day we used the Seagrape bar on the beach. The staff there were brilliant really friendly and great service. So Thank you Adrian and all the team there. So what more can i say we really enjoyed this holiday great beach, mainly great food, drink so so. Weather hot cloudy at times though you think you not catching you are use a high sun factor i don't normally burn i did and you know what that means Peeling not good. We had rain the last two afternoons and i mean rain..Get out and about meet the people they are amazing and funny and not shy about asking for tips. Plenty to o and see i will write separate reviews on Dunns River falls and Cool Runnings trip amazing fun. Whiter river tubing. Mystic mountain and bob slaying and shopping later.

Room Tip: Higher floors have the best views
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank swivena
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,017 - 4,023 of 8,756 reviews

Reviewed May 5, 2013

Where do I begin...the front desk service was extremely slow, they were, however, kind. The rooms were below average for an all-inclusive hotel. There was at least one cockroach I saw in the room. The AC barely worked. The toilets flushed every other time, the showers were poorly lit. However, the sinks were high and you could tell the bathrooms had recently been upgraded which was nice. The beds were horrible, hard and the sheets were rough, the pillows were nice though. Our "ocean view" was blocked by numerous trees. The food was average. There could have been more Jamaican food variety offered everyday. There were no pineapples anywhere-boo, I was really looking forward to some fresh pineapple. The drinks were ok and most of the bartenders would make the drinks better if you asked them to. The alcohol dispenser in our room was also nice. The wine at the restaurants was watered down, we ended up buying our own bottles. The beach was beautiful. Our kids enjoyed the free water sports, however, we were under the impression that wind surfing was free-it was not. Overall the price was too high for what we got and we will not be staying here again.

Room Tip: "make sure your ocean view is truely ocean view!
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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6  Thank Letitia719
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RiuHotelsandResorts, Social and Community Relations Manager at ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios, responded to this reviewResponded May 27, 2013

Dear guest,

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback and for expressing your concerns.

We are committed to provide excellent quality of our products and services to our guests. We regret to read that you have left our hotel with an opposite idea in your mind. I have sent your comments to the respective heads of departments involved and actions would be taken to address all your concerns.

We hope you will choose to visit us again, and give us a chance to demonstrate the high standards of Guest Service that are typical at our resorts.

With our best wishes we remain,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

Just returned last night (April 27th - May 4th) and felt compelled to write this review before settling in back home.

Let me start by saying that our group travels often together always keeping an open mind...so much so that I don't think I honestly can't recall our having issues with any of the resorts we have stayed at in the past. As long as the resort is clean and we can find some food that will appeal to us, we are perfectly happy.

It wasn't our first trip to Jamaica, but it was our first stay at the RIU Ocho Rios, and it will be OUR last.

PROS: The views, beach and ocean were absolutely beautiful. Entertainment staff are extremely friendly. While the selection in the buffets were pretty much the same every day, there is enough of a variety that you will be able to find something to eat. JERK CHICKEN HUT on the beach is the best eating you will have during your stay. STEAK RESTAURANT had nice tasting steaks, but their filet was the size of a steak tip and most everyone said the fish was terrible...including people not in our party of 12. If you are the type that likes to try really different foods, you may like the ASIAN.

REGGAE TOURS: I highly recommend forgoing the transport that is typically provided as part of your travel package (your travel agent will credit the transfer fee). We have had such a great experience in the past when in Jamaica that we contacted them again for this trip. Gregg/George are great guys and the newest member (maybe not to Reggae Tours, but to us), Kirk (AKA Blair Underwood) did right by us the entire week. We used them as transport to and from the hotel/airport with no stops at other hotels, just directly to ours. We were greeted at the airport with a cooler of Red Stripe Beers, ice cold spring water and juices. Kirk made a stop half way to allow us to use the restrooms and grab a nice rum punch!! We also scheduled our excursions through them...an 8 hour fishing charter for my husband and his buddy, a night out at Margaritaville, and a catamarin trip to Dunns River...they stay with you the whole way.

CONS, CONS,CONS: There were several, so you might want to jump to what I have highlighted...COCKROACHES, DAMP/MUSTY ROOMS, NO A/C, AND NO HOT WATER, RUDE/UNFRIENDLY STAFF.

This is the ONLY resort in the Caribbean in which we have stayed that had some of the most rude/unfriendly staff....never a good morning, rarely a smile....the exception was most of the bar tenders and a couple of the girls in the larger "in door" buffet. I'll expand on that a little more in the review in order to address the issues that were of more importance to us.

COCKROACHES!!!! While you should expect to encounter some insects and Chameleons, cockroaches in the rooms are totally unacceptable. Right off we noticed housekeeping staff had cans of roach spray on every cart....that should have tipped us off immediately. Three of our rooms had cockroaches...most of the encounters were in the bathroom, at night, upon flicking the light on.

My daughter and her friend returned to the room on our last evening at 10 p.m. to find a man in their room spraying chemical for roaches. The vapors were so strong, they weren't able to go back to their room to sleep until hours of leaving the doors open with an extra fan going. When we addressed their spraying a room at 10 p.m. and without notifying us.....again, we got nothing but attitude.

There was NO AIR CONDITIONING in the 6 rooms our party were placed in, 2 of which also had NO HOT WATER. While this is something that could happen at any resort, I have never experienced the lack of reception we encountered from the front desk staff when vacationers were voicing their complaints....they could care less and for the most part lied (or should we say told what to say by management). Problem was, depending on which desk person you spoke to, you would receive a variety of stories. We were told several....(1) it was just our building, but we couldn't be moved as the resort was at capacity...(2) the issue had just arisen that day and they were working on it, (3) it was resort wide issue, so there was no sense in moving our rooms...however, we spoke with several other vacationers who advised us they had been suffering without A/C and hot water for as much as a week. We even spoke with people who were checking out before the end of their stay because they just couldn't tolerate not being comfortable. After a call to our travel agent, we had A/C in all of our rooms, as well as hot water in the couple rooms that hadn't had any.

Be prepared to have to "shake out" (to ensure you are not carrying cockroaches back with you) and launder all of your clothing upon your return home, including those that you don't wear, as they will smell damp and musty from your room. I press my clothing before arrival and place one to two outfits sealed inside 2.5 gallon storage bags, and even those clothes had to be laundered first thing this morning. Those things that I can't launder, for example, my purse, are outside on my deck at this very minute to air out.

POOL filtration system is lacking at the largest pool where volley ball and most activity happens. Before you step foot in the pool, pay careful attention to the water line along the perimeter of the pool, especially the perimeter near the pool bar..... We were told the pool at the other end was the same by midday. Take advantage of the beautiful beach/ocean...you will be much happier.

TOWEL HUT: We got caught on the beach in a quick downpour, while some of our travel parties were at lunch, so some of the beach towels got soaked. The kid at the towel hut literally snapped at one of our fellow travelers for bringing towels back to the hut sopping wet and was told not to do it again.

DINNER BOOKING STATION: This woman was probably the most rude/unfriendly staff member we encountered. Not a smile, just very matter of fact. Oh and don't attempt to book more than two ala carte restaurants in one week....apparently that is frowned upon.

DRINKS. Although it isn't required at all inclusive resorts, we tip handsomely. Even so, you would get a "one second" pour on your drinks, but if you ask for them to pour you a full shot, they will.

Even with all of the disappointments, our group of 12 still were able to enjoy each others company, relax and make the best of the situation.

Be careful on the wet tile floors throughout the resort, they mop during high traffic times...

Read the reviews...you typically have to take reviews with a grain of salt, because you can't please everybody all of the time....but I wish I had erred on the side of caution this time.

Room Tip: We stayed in the "3000" building. Some guests we spoke with moved from the "3000&quo...
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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4  Thank Ladyjamaica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RiuHotelsandResorts, Social and Community Relations Manager at ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios, responded to this reviewResponded May 27, 2013

Dear guest,

We would like to thank you for choosing RIU Hotels and Resorts for your holidays and for taking the time to give us your constructive and valued feedback. For us every comment is helpful in improving the hotel’s services and for ongoing and future staff training.

We were concerned to note that we failed to live up to your expectations.

On the one hand, we would like to thank you for bring up your satisfaction regarding our fabulous beach, entertainment staff, variety of our buffet food and our different restaurants.

On the other hand, we are sorry to hear that our customer service failed to live up to your expectations. The ethos of our staff training requires a helpful, friendly and very obliging service at any time. The behavior of our employees not meeting these criteria is inexcusable. We will raise this issue with those responsible and figure out the problem so that it does not reoccur.

We would like to remark that due to the warm weather and the location of our resort, which is surrounded by vegetation, it is possible that insects can invade our facilities. We work hard to keep them under control, since our grounds have extensive garden areas. We fumigate continuously all areas to keep insects away from our grounds. We apologize for the failure to meet your expectations regarding this issue.

We thank you very much for your helpful and reasonable criticism. We would be delighted if you would honor us with another opportunity to convince you of our RIU service and quality.

With our best wishes we remain,

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

We went down for a wedding as a family (8 Adults, 2 Kids and 2 infants) and were part of a group of 40 people from April 27-May 4 2013.

We asked to be on the same floor as our family, but never got one. We took the room anyway and called to reception to get a crib for our baby. We were told someone would be there... they came with a cot! We then called again.. but nothing. We called a third time and FINALLY someone came and got us a crib and removed the cot. To make matters worse we had pot smokers and party animals making loud noise and knocking on our door in the wee ours of the morning. The next day we asked to get moved to a different room, and thankfully we got one.

I'm your average traveler and pretty laid back but this is not a 5 star resort! At best its a 3.5. We had upgraded to ocean view rooms.. wasn't anything flashy. Bar gets restocked every other day (and even then the maid would forget) Just different things that weren't up to par.

Pool was nice as was the beach. Grounds were fairly clean (tho we did find broken glass down by the beach!)
Buffet food was good but not great.. usually a different theme each night. A la carte dinners were POOR. Went to steak house and Gourmet, both were disappointing.

Always locals down by the beach trying to sell you pot or trinkets. Always yelling at you.. just ignored them and would keep walking!

Gym was average at best. No free weights. The pictures they post must be from another resort because it wasn't the gym that we seen!

There was usually the smell of pot looming in the air and sometimes sewage smell. Most of the employees were very nice and helpful! I didn't feel pressured to tip anyone.

We didn't see a lot of children or families. There were quite a few weddings and a mix of young and old couples.

The resort is a 2 hour bus ride from the resort so be prepared to sit! The driver did stop for a break and they served beer for $4.00 on the way there.

Overall it was a good resort but not worth the $1600 per person!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Brrob25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2013

Don't waste your money. Service was horrible, there is NO customer service. We had to beg for air conditioning. The food wasn't good, the beach was filthy. Stay away. Bottom line, you get what you pay for.

Room Tip: Stay away from building 3. Better yet, pick another location.
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with friends
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3  Thank Thelma R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RiuHotelsandResorts, Social and Community Relations Manager at ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios, responded to this reviewResponded May 27, 2013

Dear guest,

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback and for expressing your concerns.

We are committed to provide excellent quality of our products and services to our guests. We regret to read that you have left our hotel with an opposite idea in your mind. I have sent your comments to the respective heads of departments involved and actions would be taken to address all your concerns.

We hope you will choose to visit us again, and give us a chance to demonstrate the high standards of Guest Service that are typical at our resorts.

With our best wishes we remain,

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 4, 2013

most of my negativity was due to sunwing vacations...first they subcontract the flight down to some other east european company...airplane was cramped beyond belief....flight was 45 mins late taking off....when we arrived at sangster we got on their ground transport ..bus was fully loaded but we waited there for 30 mins before leaving..30 mins later we stopped for a so called bathroom break at a local bar and snack shack...can you say "kick back".....leaving the resort was another experience. we were told to be ready to be picked up at 5.30 am yet we didnt leave until 615. this was due to the fact the bus was smaller so it took a while to load all the suitcases with some being packed inside the bus with the passengers. flight was 30 mins late taking off but the worst part was the fact that it took 1 hr to start getting our bags from the conveyor. some people said sunwing had their own bag handlers and some people said it was the airport fault...not sure which is right.all i know is transport to and from was a sad disappointment.


now the resort..first its 1.5 hr from the airport so i suggest you pack a snack and drink in suitcase...we ordered a garden view in the deluxe section.what we got was a room wit a view of roofs..the roof of the walkway the roof of the theatre and the lobby ...all i can see looking out was roof. when i complained i was told that all they had available was a ground level room which i refused because i said i wanted high rooms when i made the reservation. by the next day we decided to stay in the room because my wife unpacked and didnt want to go thru all the hassle. we had a lot of mosquito in the room so we had to get the room sprayed everyday and keep the balcony door closed ...needless to say the balcony was useless.

the staff was very nice and polite and took pride in the their job. all your needs and requests were handled in a prompt fashion.

we didnt go to any of the restaurants because the buffet was always satisfying with a variety of great dishes..some of their dishes were a bit oily and some salty to my liking but could be just me and my taste.day and night entertainment was top shelf including the disco.

the beach was great but the constant hassle from the vendors on the beach made it uncomfortable. except for my bad room choice the only real complaint i have was the fact the the resort knew they have guest getting up at 4 am to leave at 530 and they didnt ensure there was some kind of breakfast available. all that was available was coffee from the cappuccino machine and nacho chips in the sports bar.

the photo submitted is the view from my room

Room Tip: use the deluxe wing..free wifi....you can request a diff room if you dont like the view.
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank trineeboi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 4, 2013

I like to write real positive reviews but this one is going to have to be moderate. If you are looking for a place to go for a great location and are not particular about the facilities or service- this could be a great place. But if service and proper facilities are important to you- don't frustrate yourself by coming here.
We came on a company trip so we didn't pay for it (which of course makes it real nice!). When I travel for pleasure the facilities don't mean as much as the location and I can overlook things (but I still notice them). It is obvious that this facility needs some work with its maintenance and its staff. A couple traveling with us had to change rooms 3 times until they found one acceptable. Our room was in the deluxe wing (an upgrade). There is light dirt on the walls and ceiling (near the air outlets) and musty smell. The promo says the couch pulls out into a bed but ours didn't. The elevator kept giving us a hard time and of the three ice makers in our deluxe wing- none of them worked. It was a long walk to the bar for ice.
The staff was okay. Some of them provided great, friendly service while others seemed to of cared less. Unfortunately I would say it was about 50/50.
So why would I even rate it average- because of the location. If you can overlook the "small things" like I mentioned above then the beach and the ambiance will enjoyed. I probably will not come back here as I understand there are facilities close by that are in better condition and the same "ambiance" . I did enjoy some of their specialty restaurants that were part of our deluxe upgrade and the food in the regular restaurants was good for being mass served.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank James R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios

Address: | Mammee Bay - St.Ann, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#7 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#8 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range: $221 - $438 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios 3.5*
Number of rooms: 856
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated in northern Jamaica, on the beachfront. Two 6-storey buildings and one 5-storey building. Surrounded by 90,000 m2 / 107,000 sq. Yards of lush gardens. Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. 10 Km / 6.2 Miles to Ocho Rios. 4 Km / 2.5 Miles from various shops. 105 Km / 65 miles to Montego Bay airport. 600 M / 1,970 ft. From a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Visa, Diners ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Riu Hotel Ocho Rios
Riu Ocho Rios Jamaica
Riu Ochos Rios
Rio Ocho Rios
Club Hotel Riu Ocho Rios
Rui Ocho Rios
ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios Jamaica

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