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“holiday in paradise”
Review of Couples Swept Away

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Couples Swept Away
Ranked #13 of 81 Hotels in Negril
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 19, 2009

We stayed at Swept Away as an alternative for our cancelled holiday to Mexico & by the end of the week we were wondering why we hadn’t gone for Jamaica before! This resort is awesome & all the disappointment over Mexico was forgotten immediately!

AIRPORT: I will start with the only negative which was the airport. It took us about 2 hours to go through immigration/customs. We already knew we were in for 1 ½ hour journey from the airport so this slow process was a bit of a nightmare after a long flight. It was a relief to be met by our rep & also to be escorted to the Couples lounge for a nice cold beer. On your departure be sure to check the weight of your suitcases as if you are even .5 of a kilo over – they will either charge you or make you repack. With hundreds of people all trying to do the same thing it is a bit of a chore. I don’t know why we bothered checking in on line as we were still made to queue up with everyone else. Security is very tight & they even do random bag searches as you board your flight. This again was a slow process & ended up delaying the flight.

ROOM: We stayed in a Garden Verandah Suite which was quite basic but very comfortable. These rooms are quite close to the road but that didn’t affect us too much. We had hoped to have a hammock on the balcony but these are only in the Atrium Suites but there was always one free on the beach so it wasn’t a problem. There were a few little bugs (spray is provided in room) around & the bathroom could do with updating but the bed was huge & really comfortable. There is a minibar with soft drinks, juices, wine & spirits plus plenty of tea & coffee. Rooms were always made up early & the nightly turn down service with a little Jamaican note was lovely.

FOOD: My favourite restaurant had to be Feathers. The food was divine in here. We mainly had breakfast & lunch in Patois as this was nearest to our rooms & we loved the staff in there – especially Kevon & Sasha. They were so warm & friendly & even when they were not serving us they would make a point of coming over. We only ate at the Palms once but they had a good variety of food on offer. The Cabana grill is good for snacks – nothing fancy but it did the job.

DRINKS: Again, very good. We varied the cocktails, alway try the cocktail of the day. Be sure to try a “Bob Marley” If you are on the beach you will be given a green flag, just stick this in the sand when you want a drink & one of the bar tenders will come & take your order.

BEACH: Exactly what you would imagine a Caribbean beach to be like. So nice and relaxing! We never understood why people put towels down early in the morning as there are plenty of chairs & plenty of shade but each to their own. The sea was beautiful blue & warm. If you get down early enough you will see plenty of fish, starfish, rays which was amazing. All the chairs have cushions which you can take in the water & float around on which was a nice touch. There are security guards on the beach but they are not intrusive at all. There are a fair few locals who walk up & down the beach selling a variety of goods. They only ever walk along the shoreline & should you buy anything the security will watch over the transaction from a distance to make sure you are not ripped off etc. These guys didn’t bother us at all infact it was good to see a slice of the real Jamaica. Our favourite was the cat in the hat. “Cigaareeeeeeeeeette's, Cuban Cig-ars, rolling papers" just made us laugh the whole time! I also liked the 3 guys who come along with their drums & guitars & belt out a couple of tunes!

ACTIVITIES: Couples Swept Away has the largest sporting facilities in the Caribbean. The Gym & aerobics studios are great for those who like to workout. There is an Olympic sized swimming pool & loads of tennis courts. We didn’t use the pools much but they are open 24 hours. The sporting facilities are across the road from the main resort along with the spa. There are guards who will stop the traffic in order for you to cross. We found this really funny but please use these guys because drivers out there are a bit mad to say the least!
We went snorkelling (day & night) which was just breathtaking seeing all these animals in their natural habitat! The water sports guys are brilliant & such a good laugh! The catamaran cruise is a lot of fun! They take you around the coast of Negril, by Rick's Cafe, etc. and then you can swim in these caves. The best part of the cruise had to be Rasta Ralphie who plays his guitar & sings. He is one of the coolest, nicest people we have ever met! So much fun! He carved us a little drum & blessed it for us which was lovely. One little note - Make sure you don’t take too much with you as you are waist deep in water when you board the boat.
There are opportunities to do paragliding & jet skiing but these are not run by the hotel & if you do these it is at your own risk.

ENTERTAINMENT: We didn’t make it much past 11 but the nightclub was really nice & closes when the last person leaves. Be sure to check out “Ultimate Chocolate” in the Aura lounge. It’s basically a big karaoke session but he is an amazing pianist. Word has it that if you ask for a song which 4 people have heard of but he hasn’t you will get a bottle of rum. He can play anything. The bonfire on the beach was romantic – they give you blankets to snuggle up with whilst being serenaded by a couple of singers.

SERVICE: Very friendly staff, I love their laid back attitude! They can’t do enough for you & will always stop for a chat!
It can be a little slow at times but this is Jamaica & it really isn’t a big deal!

OVERALL: Holiday of a lifetime for us. We will definitely be going back. The resort is beautiful (they grow all the plants/flowers in their own nursery), the people of Jamaica are great. They literally have thought of everything & go out of their way to make sure you have a perfect holiday. The other thing we liked was the age ranges – no drunken louts. There was a great mix of people. Sorry for the long report but I can’t bang on about how great this place is enough. You will not be disappointed if you choose Couples Swept Away. It is paradise.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank paulnkirst
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 17, 2009

We loved this resort overall!

Room: Nothing spectacular but fine. We booked an ocean verandah suite. It had a partial ocean view and it took less than one minute to walk to the beach. Nice flat screen TV with lots of channels. We thought the bed was a little hard. Thorough maid service. Only complaint was that there were tiny ants in the bathroom that we could never get rid of. They brought us some bug spray but they were always still there. It wasn’t to the point where it bothered me too much though.

Beach: LOVED the beach! Best I’ve ever been to. The water was so clear and very calm most of the time. Not deep, I could go out pretty far and the water would only be to my waist. My husband and I would grab our floats and just lay in the ocean. The sand was nice too. And the sunsets were beautiful! There were always enough chairs and floats and the beach service was prompt. There were the guys walking down the beach selling “cigarettes”, jet ski rides, etc. but if you just say “no thanks” they move on. Security moves them on too. We walked off the resort a bit but kept getting asked to buy stuff so we pretty much stayed in our area after that.

Food: I really liked the food. My favorites were Patois and Lemongrass. Also nice to do the buffet at the Palms. At Patois I loved the salmon mac n cheese, pizzas, goat cheese/vegetable panini, Greek salad, and jerk chicken pasta (spicy but good!). For breakfast, get the banana French toast! We ate at Feathers and it was very good, just a little too fancy for our tastes. Loved Lemongrass so much we made another reservation for our last night. Check out the martini bar up there! The frozen drinks were good, a little strong for me (I’m a wimp!) so I drank mostly wine and mimosas. We liked the sweet tea too. And the sorbets! Overall, the service was a little slow at times, but they work on Jamaica time. We were laid back.

Activities: I was happy to lie on the beach, so we didn’t do too much. My husband played golf twice. He said the course was alright, nothing special, but he still had fun. Very hilly, he said it was worth it to pay extra for the cart. We went on the catamaran cruise and that was fun. Some people we talked to went to Margaritaville and said the food was great but we never made it there.

Entertainment: We had a blast in the piano lounge with Ultimate Chocolate. Get there early if you want to sit around the piano. We did the “name that tune” contest and had a great time. One night we stayed there late when the lounge becomes a dance club and had a good time dancing with some people we had met. We may have missed some other stuff because we were tired and went to bed early some other nights.

Resort: The grounds were nice, very clean. The staff was always polite and accommodating. No issues. I also liked that the resort was flat, very easy to walk around. The pools were nice but we spent most of our time on the beach.

Weather: It rained 1-2 times a day, but it always passes pretty quickly. It would usually be around lunchtime then again in the late afternoon. I still got plenty of sun. There is a big umbrella in each room. We used it to go get something to eat while it was raining.

A few tips: The sun is pretty extreme. I used spray sunscreen and apparently I missed a few spots and got burned on the first day. Didn’t even realize till it was too late. Bring a lot of sunscreen and reapply often! It’s pretty expensive at the resort to buy more.

Clothes do take a long time to dry there; bring enough suits and cover-ups.

You probably know that there isn’t much sightseeing around, but we knew that going in. The only time I left the resort was on the catamaran. It was fine with me though. We wanted a relaxing beach vacation and that was what we got.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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9  Thank BlueDaisy19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 16, 2009

This is an excellent all inclusive. The food was very good, lots of things to do, beach is outstanding.

I found the accommodation very nice but they are in need of some touch ups. The bathroom in particular needs to be upgraded and the cushions on the Verenda furniture looked a bit beat. Our room was labelled an Ocean View Veranda Suite. It was very close to the ocean and did offer a view of the ocean from the verada.

This place offers lots to do. Sailing, Glass boats, Snorkling, Water Skiing, Paddle boats are all included. We were also given a $175 credit for a message and $75 to use at the gift shop.

There is no tipping allowed at the resort and they are quick to turn down tips especially if the supervisors are near by. The penalty is loss of job. So if you plan to tip be descrete.

It is very safe walking on the beach. You will be asked to buy everything from bracelets to drugs on the beach but a polite "No Thanks" is all that is required. We walked to Negril and into town and had no problems at all.

The entertainment was very good compared to other all inclusives we have visited. The Piano bar in particular was lots of fun and I have never heard a more gifted Piano Man.

The beach bar service with the green flags to indicate you are wanting a beverage is excellent. They do come around with fruit and towels although not that frequently

At this resort the beach chair cushions can be used as a floatation and this is very popular with people floating in the ocean on the calm water. Lots of fun.

We tried out all the restaurants and the food is far superior to Mexico and Cuba.

Great time. Would go again.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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7  Thank Valuator
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 15, 2009

My husband & I were looking for a short, reasonably priced getaway. We booked 5 nights at Couples through their Secret Rendezvous, and were pleased to end up at CSA. We were booked in the lowest class room, and called for the cost of an upgrade. It was $160 more per night, which we opted not to do, but the woman noted our wish for an upgrade on our file.

The ride from the airport was fine, the driver stopped for a bathroom/Red Stripe break, which was nice. We were greeted with cold towels and champagne, and were told that our room had been upgraded to one on the beach.

The room itself was my least favorite part of the trip. We were nice and close to the beach, but on the second floor (with a very windy staircase). We had a minibar (which was great for water & juice in the morning, and wine at night), but no TV. There was also no dresser, which made unpacking tough. The bathroom was pretty gross -- hardly any light, dark shower, no water pressure, and very buggy. We dropped a towel on the floor and when we picked it up, it had at least 20 tiny bugs on it. The room never felt clean enough, and I'm pretty sure I got bit by bugs at night (I am covered in bites). A bit too rustic for my taste. It was also pretty loud, the wooden shades don't do much for sound control. The balcony was nice, and the room stayed nice and cool with the fan & AC.

We tried all of the restaurants, and liked them all. The continental breakfast in the room was a nice way to start the day. Sea Grapes was great for a snack -- we loved the sweet potato chips. We ate at the Cabana restaurant for lunch often, since we were usually hungry before Patois opened (and there never seemed to be anyone in there). We missed the dinner buffet since we had reservations at Lemongrass, but it looked great. The one negative dining experience we had was our last night at the Palms -- the waiter never came back after we got our meals, so we couldn't get coffee or dessert. The best was at Feathers, our waiter was very nice and charming.

The drinks were great, most of the bartenders were friendly and knew how to make anything. Always quick service. The green flag service on the beach was prompt as well.

The beach is gorgeous, and the water is perfect. The pool was nice in the afternoon, for drinks and more shade. The vendors on the beach were annoying at times, and leaving the property seemed more stressful than it was worth.

We did the snorkeling & glass bottom boat tours, and enjoyed both. We also went to Ricks on the shuttle, and wished we could have stayed an hour or so longer to hear the great band. The divers begging for tips (and being less than grateful for what they received) got old after a bit.

The gym facilities were very nice. I ran twice and enjoyed a smoothie after. If we were there longer, I would have liked to take a class or two. We had a couples massage at the spa, which was also very nice.

We didn't find much to do at night. There never seemed to be people anywhere we went (I think I saw 2 people in the casino all week). We checked out Ultimate Chocolate, but he seemed to talk more than sing. He was good when he actually sang, though! There was a bonfire on the beach one night with an excellent couple singing & playing guitar.

Overall, we had a very nice trip. I would like to see if the other rooms are nicer, but we would definitely try Couples again.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank JulieP33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 15, 2009

BEAUTIFUL resort. Lush gardens, hidden jacuzzis, koi ponds throughout the winding pathways within the resort.

AMAZING staff. Always remembered us--even after very brief conversations. Everyone helpful and service with a smile. The entertainment and watersports crew were especially comical and fun!

ROMANTIC atmosphere at the private beach dinners, at Feathers and Patois restaurants, the Wednesday night bonfires and the Saturday night movies on the beach.
Couples massage at the TOP NOTCH spa is also a wonderful experience!

SO MUCH to do -- glass bottom boats, snorkeling, scuba diving, hobie kats, catamaran cruise, basketweaving class, Jamaican dance class, board games, newlywed games, night club dancing and piano bar--all included for free! I think we only spent around $200 in addition to our stay!


Check out the message boards on www.couples.com --tons of information here--really helped me in planning our vacation!!

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
12  Thank krisinky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2009

My husband have been to many different resorts on the island and Couples rates up there as one of the best. It is not as big as RIU (which we also love) but offers amazing privacy , comfort and class, the staff is second to none. We felt all of our needs were more than met and the smiling faces of the staff a pleasure.

I would recommend this to any couple looking to run away and escape the stress of every day and reconnect. Grab a hammok in the evening along the beach and enjoy the amazing sunset. or
walk the most beautiful beach on the island by day. The candlelit dinners for two on the beach at night were also so special.

We also agreed that the beds were the most comfortable, the turn down service at night a treat and our balcony in the gardens so cool and relaxing after a long day. We will be back!

8  Thank sandi67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2009

My husband and I went back to CSA this March and the second time around was even better than the first! For those who have yet to travel to CSA, you should know the following:

-the food is delicious
-the resort is VERY clean and well kept
-beach towels are provided (but bring your own beach bag)
-the garden rooms (particularly in the "new" section) have some road noise
-the only money you should bring (unless you plan to leave the property, which you can do easily by walking along the beach and buying souvenirs) is to tip the bus driver who picks you up and takes you back to the airport, and if you intend to 1) buy items at the resort, or 2) do activities not included in the price, like parasailing (which is not offered at the resort)
-speaking of souvenirs, they are more expensive at the resort, obviously, so if you want jewelry, hats, a sarong, etc., just walk down the beach to the west and there are tons of shops and kiosks to buy these things (cash only). Someone may come up to try to get you to come over to their shop but if you say "no thank you", they leave you alone.
-bring one credit card, they need it for incidentals, should those arise
-internet is available free of charge in the computer room.
-one reserves a beach chair by putting a towel or shirt or bag on it--no one takes these things and they can lie there all day long. We would wake up around 7:30 to do this because we wanted to be in the shade.
-Lemongrass and Feathers require reservations in advance (pants and shoes required for men!). Feathers is in-doors completely and gets pretty cold with air conditioning.
-remember the names of the staff that you liked and name them at the end of the trip in the comment card that you are required to fill out upon leaving. You are not allowed to tip them but this is a good way to recognize them.
-finally, this is not the Ritz, meaning you don't get marble floors in your bathroom, take that as you will
-if you plan to be married on the beach please keep the following in mind: the guards will keep people from walking on the beach behind you (i.e. they won't let people ruin your video and photos) but you are still on the beach and everyone is sitting on their beach chairs around you and staring at you, which is not a bad thing, you just need to realize you won't be there alone. LOTS of weddings were taking place this time and we even saw a catered party on the beach for a large group that came for a wedding and I didn't know that was possible away from the restaurants and think it is a FABULOUS idea. Oh and do yourselves a favor, Bride and Groom, DO NOT WEAR a suit and full giant wedding dress unless you want to be hot and uncomfortable. This a beach in the tropics.

Ok, back to our trip, what we loved this time around:
This time around we played tennis virtually every day (there are lots of great courts, including clay) and it was fabulous. Instructors give lessons for free every day for various levels and you can get one-on-one instruction from in-house pros for free, as well.

The beach is still gorgeous and relaxing, and yes, you can still leave your things for 5 hours and come back to find them still on the chair.

The food was even better this time around, we thought (and we loved it last time). We were particularly impressed with Lemongrass and the Palms. The last time the lobster on Saturday (lobster night) left something to be desired, but this time around it was delicious! We didn't do dinner at the Patios Patio but ate breakfast there every single day and it just cannot be beat. The blueberry griddle cakes are to die for. I was disappointed that Seagrapes Cafe didn't have their snapper grilled in foil but they did have great snapper burgers. The service at this cafe can be a bit spotty but if you're in a relaxed mood it shouldn't drive you too crazy. We thought that overall there was a greater variety of fruit this time and it was all delicious.

This time around we also did the 3 hour catamaran, which was fun. It leaves in the afternoon (sign up at the front desk) and goes until about 6 pm. It is a nice trip and once the catamaran gets to Rick's Cafe you get to jump into the water (if you want) and swim around the caves. This looked like great fun and my husband did it. Bring your own towels!!! Additionally, you have to go through the water to go on the catamaran (thigh high water) and most people do not wear shoes or flip flops, however, the floor is rough when you just get on and 2 people actually cut their feet (my gentle tootsies did not, oddly, get cut, I assume it's just a random location that has some rough flooring) so be forewarned and maybe wear flip flops.

Snorkeling was great, again, just sign up at the watersports desk. Life vests available for "lazy snorkelers" (like me!). Bring your own towel and wear a shirt on the boat, otherwise you will freeze to death after the snorkeling as the boat goes back to shore.

If you go to the spa (either on your dime or because they give you a free massage), DO sit in the gorgeous pool in the actual spa complex....meaning come ahead!

Overall, the property is still beautiful, the staff is very friendly, you can eat great food at all hours and get a great work out too. Of course you can also lazy around all day long. The great things about CSA are no kids screaming everywhere and no drunk people doing the same (even with all the free alcohol). We can't wait to return for a third time!

Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
3  Thank Earth3003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Couples Swept Away

Address: Norman Manley Blvd, Negril, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Westmoreland Parish > Negril
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Negril
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Negril
#10 Luxury Hotel in Negril
#14 Romantic Hotel in Negril
Price Range: $379 - $681 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Couples Swept Away 4*
Number of rooms: 312
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

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