Okay, background: my husband 37 and I, 38 have traveled around quite a bit - St. Lucia, Mexico, Aruba, St. John/Thomas. We've stayed at semi-inclusive resorts and we both food snobs and cheap as hell. I planned this vacation as a gift to us after having 4 kids in 6 years - heck, we needed the rest! So I started researching and researching and RESEARCHING. I can not understand why anyone would give this place anything but 5 stars:
ARRIVAL/DEPARTURE: Fly in on a Thursday morning and there are no crowds, no lines and no problems at the airport. Had enough time to change clothes, grab a beer at the Couple's lounge and off we went in our bus. Bus ride is no worse than any other inner city cab experience, roads were windy but fine and driver was safe and polite. Tip him. Flew out, same thing, except we used Club Mobay and that is TOTALLY worth the money, free great food, drinks and peace prior to leaving heaven.
CHECK IN/ROOM: Check-in was a breeze, cool towel, champagne, your room will be ready in a few hours, go grab a drink and some food and check back, leave your luggage here with us. Simple, friendly and easy. Room was 4318, top floor beachfront verandah suite. It was clean, nice and perfect. Minibar was stocked with drinks and everything was put together for ease. Loved it. Not sure why people complain about them either - sure our room wasn't the Ritz in Boston, but...um...we didn't go to the Ritz in Boston? I think after walking around any room would be fine, we'll probably stay in a garden verandah next time just so we can afford to stay longer.
FOOD: The variety at all meals is amazing. So here's the rundown for first timers: PALMS: buffet for breakfast/lunch/dinner and it's all good. Nightly entertainment which is quality and good local options. No real dress code, just needs shirt and shoes. Loved it. PATOIS: menu breakfast/lunch/dinner, same dresscode, less selection, a bit more italian things. LEMONGRASS: thai/asian fusion, needs reservations and only dinner. Not our thing, we have eaten a lot of thai and will skip this next time we come. FEATHERS: fancy menu, long pants for men, closed toe shoes and shirts with collar, VERY VERY NICE and worth it! Cabana Grill next to Patois, patties (try one or six) and grill/bar food. Open late and good for snacking. Veggie Bar next to Palms, amazing fish tacos and fresh foods, not only vegetarian items, totally worth it! Eat eat and be merry. If you can't find something you like, you should stay at home. Ate my weight in fresh fish and callaloo - if you don't know what something is, try it, 99% of the time I loved it.
EXERCISE/SPA: Wow, what a complex. Played tennis with my husband, had a great time. Went to the spa and had an unbelievable massage from Michelle, everyone should request her. Pedicure by ?Camilla? was really impressive as I brought her winter Virginia feet and they were NOT pretty.
BEACH: Venders do not bother you. They hawk their stuff "Check out my carvings!" and keep walking. I sat comfortably in my lounger which was easy to find and watching the surf. My drinks were kept filled by lovely beach bar staff (GO CEDRICK!) and if they were busy it was like 8 feet to the nearest bar. I've actually never felt as safe on a foreign beach - we walked it one day all the way down and a polite "no thank you" worked every time - they weren't angry you didn't buy something but they were happy you were polite. Sand fleas got me at some point and it wasn't bad - think it was one night when we were walking home from dinner. Water was peaceful and it was considered choppy while we were there. Didn't do much water sports as the wind kept that closed up...didn't care though!
OVERALL - do not understand the haters. Just pack your stuff, grab your passport and go. People were extremely nice. Staff was always friendly, all you had to do was smile and say good morning and even someone who may have been in a grumpy mood smiled and cheered up. Guests were all very nice, mostly midwesterners and Canadians while we were there. All happy to be warm and relaxed.
I even had to go see the nurse who was friendly and competent. Thought I had a fishbone stuck in my throat, was just my laryngitis coming back...stupid winter
SUGGESTIONS: I think the reservation situation at the tennis courts is off a bit: had some challenges making reservations for courts only to come over and see 5-7 courts empty consistently. Same problem with reservations for restaurants but not as extreme. Maybe put some toppers on your mattresses, they were a bit hard, but nothing a few red-stripes or Jamaican Jewels couldn't fix. I think the angry chef at the Lemongrass needs some zoloft. ;) (wait until you see him...he's the only unhappy person at Couples).
Just go. We have never been people to repeat a destination but are already planning our return next year. Feel free to PM me with specific questions and I will give you honest answers!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Immediately upon entering Couples Swept Away, you realize that you have arrived in paradise. Exotic flowers bloom amidst acres of green—on seven miles of the purest white sand beach in Negril, Jamaica. Dotted among the tropical gardens—open-air cafes, small pool enclaves and fresh fruit oases are yours to discover. Never crowded or hurried, the resort offers an intimate tranquility and when desired, total seclusion. All rooms embrace a quiet elegance with island cedar furnishings and pure white linens. Plantation shutters open onto private verandahs with views of gardens and azure sea. Breezy open-air restaurants engage candle-lit lanterns and billowing white curtains to strike a romantic note. While the pristine 10-acre sports complex encompasses every imaginable activity, the superb spa serves as a haven of relaxation. Couples Swept Away simply captures your heart and soothes your soul. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Couples Swept Away Negril
- Couples Swept Away Hotel Negril
- Jamaica Couples Swept Away
- Swept Away Resort
- Negril Couples Swept Away
- Swept Away Negril
- Couples Swept Away Jamaica
- Couples Negril