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Reviewed February 15, 2006

My wife and dreamed of a wedding on the beach and Swept Away easily made it possible. We booked 6 months in advance and communicated with Tamika Jones via email, but the details are not really discussed until you arrive and meet w/ the coordinator a day before the wedding! I was nervous about that aspect, but when we met with Kinesha(our coodinator), all my concerns were consoled with a "yah mon", "no problem, mon" in true jamaican style.

She went through a very organized checklist including location(beach, garden, gazebo), arch/aisle, flowers, guest seats, flavor of cake/champagne, and photography. We had a mental picture of how we wanted it to look: bamboo stick aisle w/ arch facing the blue ocean and sky-that was made possible. Also wanted to have roots type musicians playing reggae in the background and that also was made possible. The marriage officer was very friendly and alleved nervousness with simple and easy to repeat vows. Photography and videography ran through the whole show and even people laying out on beach next to our reserved area were taking pictures! Security guards made sure no one walking along the beach would be in our background during the ceremony.

The cake/champagne reception in the garden was also perfect: a long white draped table for all our 12 guests, the mento band still playing, the coordinator helping to set up photos of my bride and I with the cake and champagne toasting, they even had hor'dourves which we didn't expect. While everyone was enjoying that, the photo/video guys took us around and set up good photo shots around the resort. We also went back to the beach for more shots of our choice. Total wedding package time was about 1-1 1/2 hour but never rushed or hurried. In the end, the photo album and DVD was excellent! All our friends and family back home were so impressed. The wedding was very well-organized, well-executed, and even better, IMO, than weddngs that take a year to plan!

On a side note, we got very lucky to have the wedding on a clear sunny day(feb3). Our stay was from feb 1-feb 8 and about half that time it was cloudy with rain and it was a shame cuz our guests were only there during that time-when they left it got sunny! We purposely chose Feb because everyone says that the winter months are the peak sunny time and the spring/summer months are the rainy season. Well, not necessarily true in our case and a little luck always helps. Weather is unpredictable even when its predicted.

Regarding the resort itself: AWESOME! Especially to have a wedding in a peaceful and quiet place. I'm 32 and my wife is 27, so we did notice that most the people there are older and like it quiet. Most the night activities end at 11:30pm. When we went to 'club night' at the sports bar it was only us and a handful of younger guests! There are a few reggae clubs only a taxi ride away too.

But the staff still remains very active. The entertainment directors- G-holiday, Champagne, and Robert, all get the guests involved and go out of their way to make sure everyone is having fun, regardless of their age. During the day theres activities every hour but they do not interfere with the tranquility of the relaxing beach setting.

The service and food was better than expected at the buffet-style place and Lemongrass-a Thai restaurant. Feathers, the dress-up/fancy place was OK. I found the atmosphere at Lemongrass to be more upscale though.

Overall this is place is incredible and would definately come back. Would also recommend Swept Away to those who want a destination wedding. Even though its like planning a wedding blind till you get there, you can put your trust in their coordinators and staff to make it everything you ever dreamed.

Date of stay: February 2006
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38  Thank MRK74Chicago_IL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 13, 2006

I'll make this short and sweet. The resort is beautiful. The grounds are gorgeous. The rooms are nice and well maintained. The food was really good. But what impressed me the most was the friendliness of the staff. If you are looking for a party atmosphere, this is not the place for you, but if you are looking for some quiet time to relax with your spouse, this place can't be beat.

Date of stay: February 2006
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20  Thank Mr_Chumley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 12, 2006

Absolute paradise! The Swept Away resort exceeded our expectations. This was our third business award excursion with 6 other couples,(all mid 30's - 40's) in the last three years and by far the best. Everyone we met in Jamaica was very nice and accommodating.
It is a 1.5 hour drive from the airport in Montego Bay to Swept Away. The setting - Beautifully maintained meandering walkways to your rooms and very tropical. You felt like you were in a jungle right on the beach. I think we took a differnet path to our room every day. The Beach-unlike the Mayan Riviera we could always find a chair and wade peacefully out into the gradually sloping smooth sand. NEVER seemed crowded. Bars - The bar booze seemed much better than the RIU Palace we stayed at in Playacar. Did I mention friendly people? They would not accept tips. Restaurant was great, plenty to choose from. Go to Feathers or Lemon grass if you want a longer more intimate setting at dinner. At the airport, they seemed to wait longer than they needed to, to take us to a shuttle. The Couples counter area overflowed quickly and after about 20 minutes they took us to a shuttle. Hotel check-in for a group of 14 seemed a little confusing. They had us sit while they came over with clipboards and guessed at our names. Some of us just started going to the directly to the front desk and they were VERY accommodating. We stayed in Oceanview and Beachfront Verandahs...all clean and beautiful. just like the brochures. Taxidrivers seem to wait for you when they take you some where. I think it ensures them a roundtrip fare. It seemd expensive to go into Negril, $20 per couple roundtrip for a 4-5 mile round trip. Not much to see in Negril, VERY small town. We did go to Rick's Cafe to see Cliff diving, (bring your $1 bills as the kids all jump for money) We never worried about our safety. Plenty to do at Copules from swimming, racquetball, tennis, golf, Parcourse, fitness gym, biking, or just laying around reading, sunning, etc. We all commented how much we would like to go back to Swept Away.

Date of stay: February 2006
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30  Thank HeartlandTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 11, 2006

We stayed at Couples Swept Away for our honeymoon in June of 2005. Suffice it to say we had a lovely trip. We found the resort and grounds beautiful, and our room clean and neat. Staff was very very friendly and helpful, and the trainee staff in particular were just delightful. The beach is absolutely gorgeous. Food was a tad variable but generally very nice. THe beachfront barbecue was particularly memorable, ditto the beachfront grill. Snorkling trips were awesome and the dive guides were a lot of fun. We do tip service, and while we never felt it was expected, we could always tell it was appreciated. The only thing we felt was sub-par was the evening entertainment, which generally was pretty dull. Course sunsets in a hammock on the beach are a lot more enjoyable way to spend an evening anyway. One note for travelers. Watch out for sand fleas. My wife got pretty bit up. Bug spray will help, and if you do get bit the nurse on site will give you some cream to ease the itch.

All in all, we loved it.

Date of stay: June 2005
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13  Thank MDs_a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 10, 2006

We just returned from a week at Swept Away (Jan. 25- Feb. 1). We are 50-somethings, and went with another couple we often travel with.

Perhaps my expectations were set to high from reading the many reviews both here, and on the moderated Swept-Away web site. While the resort is beautiful, I would certainly not rate it 5 stars--and in reality, I think it's pushing it to call it a 4 star.

We had booked months in advance, and had reserved Garden Suite rooms. These are the lowest level and price (I beleive), but upon arrival we were told that all the rooms were filled, so we were DOWNgraded to two other rooms. We were assured that the next day, we would be moved to the appropriate room and each couple was given a $100 certificate for the inconvenience.

The rooms we had were in the 400 numbers--and they are in sore need of refurbishment. The lghting was poor, the toilet barely flushed, and the 2 double beds were each so small that we wound up sleeping in seperate beds apart. When we checked in, they advised us not to unpack so we could be easily moved.

The next day it was well after 2 before the new rooms were available--and we were moved. So, in effect, we lost the first day and half of our vacation since we couldn't unpack and get comfortable.

Our "real" rooms were very nice. These were in the 2200 block. The road out front is very noisy, but when the room doors were closed, the noise was barely audiable. Our room still was not in "perfect" shape--the lamp behind the bed was falling apart, lighting was dim--it was difficult to read at night. On the plus side, the balocony was beautiful, the view of the garden and grounds was grand, and the housekeeping was efficent.

Be warned that food portion size is small. We arrived after a long day of flying, with all 4 of us very hungry. Of course, we arrived too early for dinner--and too late for the orientation to learn what's open when. We were told we could get food at the Sports Bar across the street at the work out building. We went there, and ordered some appetizers (the only thing on the menu). After about 45 minutes they arrived--and seriously, the quantity was unreal. The spring rolls I ordered were all of 2 inches long, and the order consisted of 2 of them! Our friends, who ordered different appetizers had similarly small portions.

Once we figured out the restaurant schedules, we never went hungry. Except for Feathers and Lemongrass, nearly all the meals were buffet style. There are huge quantities of food and drink available--but where it is served (such as fresh beef or fish), the portion served is meager. My wife often asked for more, and felt that she was grudgingly given another small morsel of food! I should say that she had just had knee replacement surgery, so getting up and down to go back into the buffet line was not her cup of tea!

Staff was all very friendly, and generally efficent. Unlike some reviews I read, noone learned our names. The resort was full (actually overbooked--more about that later), and the staff were really busy every moment. It often took 2 or 3 times asking to get coffee or a refill of a coffee cup at the buffets.

Food at the buffets was good to very good--as good as can be expected for a buffet. Variety was excellent at every meal, and the deserts were exceptionally good. Surprisingly, there was limited fresh fruit at the meals.

Feathers and Lemongrass were excellent. As you've read, you need reservations for both. The trick is to make the reservations right at 7:30 AM for the meal the next day. We ate at both Lemongrass and Feathers twice during out stay.

There is a wonderful piano bar upstairs of the main dining room. A very talented guy called Ultimate Chocolate plays a mean piano and the sing along is a ball, even if you have a rotten voice like me! It's small, so get there about 20 min before the action starts.

The beach is wonderful. And the services at the beach are outstanding. The swimming area in the ocean is large and all soft sand bottom. The water is warm. We discovered that the chair cushions made excellent floats--we walked them out to the far end of the swim area, and let the tide float us back to the beach. Tough life, but, hey, someone has to do it.

A special high-light at the beach was the cold towels and fresh fruit that the staff would hand out periodically to guests on the beach. They also served a special drink-of-the-day every late morning. The flag service works well--and you can't go thirsty waiting for a drink on the beach.

While I'd read that it was hard to find a beach chair unless you got to the beach very early, we did not find that to be the case. Chairs and cushions are very pleantiful. You might have to drag the chair a bit to find where you want to lay--but we never had a problem getting a chair. Unlike some places I've stayed, towels are readily available--and you can get as many as you want, whenever you want! But for some reason, at check-out you need to have a reciept showing you turned in your towels. It doesn't make sense, since they give them out at the water sports building like candy--but that's their process.

The glass bottom boat ride was fun--the guy who ran the boat is a real performer and it was more than the typical glass bottom boat ride!

We went parasailing through Elvis! Yes, you read right--even with my wife's new knees. You take off and land from a moving boat--and it is very gentle. Basically no worse than sitting down in a chair. Elvis is a kewl dude. He's got anything in the way of water fun, somehow remembers everyone, and isn't pushy. You can't miss him if you're on the beach.

I mentioned overbooking. Our start was rough in the downgrade--but the next day they had apparently so overbooked that they had to send people with confirmed reservations elsewhere. I was talking with a guest who was there before we arrived--he was offered a significant incentive to move to Couple OR to open up rooms at CSA. I don't know how many couples were turned away, but I did directly talk to many who were pretty upset that the room type they booked wasn't available, or that they had to spend their first day or two elsewhere. One honeymooning couple rearranged their double beds in the room so they could sleep together . . .

So bottom line--the resort is beautiful. The help is efficent and friendly, but overworked when the resort is full. The food is good to very good--with Feathers being excellent or very close to excellent. But they obviously have a problem in the reservations area. I would be hesitant to go back, since I wouldn't know if the confirmed reservation I was holding would be honored. Once we got past the first 2 days, we had a wonderful time.

Date of stay: January 2006
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29  Thank Global810642
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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