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Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #4 of 14 Hotels in Runaway Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 5, 2014

went last week for four days and enjoyed the resort. in summary, the room was nice (like tiles on floors instead of carpet), the food was good, the beach was nice. only bad point was we had about $100 taken from our safe as we likely didn't lock it properly and people were in our room when we locked it (or didn't) to spray room for bugs (got bit by something so they sprayed). its a shame that an otherwise great stay was marred by this. our fault for not making sure we locked safe properly, but shame on them for taking advantage (4 staff in our room when we locked safe). and they knew how to do it, took 1 $50, 2 $20's, 1 $10 out of our envelope so we didn't notice til the next day.
otherwise had to say resort was nice, very big. they said 2nd largest in Jamaica. nice long walks to beach each day (good exercise) so we didn't mind. nice nude beach section too, except for the local (4-5) who were fishing in water nearby and always wanted to walk by this section right near beach, no big deal, but a bit annoying as they did this several times a day. security usually shewed them away, but they didn't need to be in beach area at all.
if you are looking for an adult only resort, this only had a hint of it, as much mixture with families.

they were calling for rain everyday, but it never did, heard thunder but a few drops fell that's all.
water was mostly nice and clear. in nude section you definitely need water shoes. other parts were good. lots of chairs everywhere on the beach. didn't hang out at pool but it seemed nice and always lots of action there.

Room Tip: don Pablo location was good, didn't see other rooms, but our were nice, modern.
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  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Redtruck T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded July 4, 2014

Dear Guest,

First, we want to inform you that we sincerely regret the situation that you report us.

In this regard, we would like to acknowledge that we have very strict control of all issues reported. We are very sorry that we were not allowed the opportunity to provide you a personal follow up of this case as per the security protocols established by the chain. In addition, please kindly note that we allocate all our effort and measures at our guest’s disposal to take extra security measures and avoid such situations.

Of course, we would like to add that we are at our guest’s disposal at any time to provide them the necessary assistance to denounce situations or cases as you mention to the relevant authorities of this country.

For total peace of mind of our customers, we recommend at arrival the use of safe boxes available in all rooms to deposit their valuables. Otherwise we are still happy to know that you have enjoyed your stay here with us and we do hope to see you again in the near future.


Best wishes,


Cassandra Gentles
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection

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2,478 - 2,484 of 2,973 reviews

Reviewed June 5, 2014

Let me first say this is not a 5 star resort by any means. If you think it is, you have never stayed at a 5 star resort before. Do not get me wrong. My husband and I had a lovely time and the resort was quite nice but not worthy of a 5 star rating. I would say it was more of a 3.5 star. I would not call myself a world traveller but my husband and I have been to a few all-inclusive resorts in Mexico, Bahamas and Dominican Republic, staying in resorts ranging from 3 to 5 stars. This resort was not the worse but it certainly wasn't the best. Here are my personal observations of the resort:

Cons:

Almost all of the restaurants have no air conditioning. We were sweating while eating and really couldn't enjoy the experience because it was so hot and humid.

Not enough elevators. We were constantly waiting for an elevator and at times they weren't working.

When we checked-in they gave us a room w/ 2 full sized beds. We are a married couple. I felt as though they should have asked us our preference rather than giving us separate beds and putting us through the hassle of having to switch the following day for a king sized bed.

Once we were settled in our room we discovered our phone did not work. I brought it to guest services attention 3 times and it never got fixed. On the 3rd request, they sent a repair man up. He looked at it and said it would be replaced. It never got replaced. We travelled with another couple so having the telephone working would have made our lives a bit easier not to mention to have in case of emergency.

Room service took hours and there was an evening where we called up our butler for ice and champagnes. She never showed up.

Linens (bedspread, decorative pillows and sofa cover) were filthy. I mean, you could see the dirt on them and that was a huge turn off for a supposed "5 star" resort.

The Don Pablo collection areas were nice but they need to do a better job of secluding the areas. It wasn't all clearly defined and there were times we were sharing the pool with people that were traveling with small children. The beach area for the DP collection was tiny. Once again, we were roped off but there was a day my lounger was placed right next to a screaming baby. I have no problem with families and small children but we payed for an adults only vacation and I did not feel we got that.

There were some other small issues but didn't nothing really worth getting bent out of shape for. You don't expect these types of things from a 5 star resort. Hard to get towels, floors weren't cleaned everyday, fridge stunk, and our room smelled heavily of smoke.

Pros:

Food was pretty good. Jerk chicken hut by the beach was delicious and a must try!

Service at the restaurants were great. We made friends with a few of the waiters. They made our stay 10 times better and is one of the main reasons we had such a great time. Shane, Demar and Lovett deserve raises and should train the rest of the wait staff!

They set our dinner reservations for us and when we wanted to change one we had no issues. I know some people may not like this because they chose the time and days we were going where but for us, it made life easier. At any other resort they leave it up to you to reserve your dinners. We always have a problem w/ this set up because by the time we get settled in and decide which restaurant we want to try they are usually all booked up and left w/ either the buffet or have to eat at a restaurant we don't like multiple times. With this arrangement, we were able to dine at all of their restaurants and didn't have to rush to make a reservation as soon as we got there.

The resort grounds overall are beautiful. Lobbies were clean and the landscaping was very well maintained.

Getting change was a bit annoying but never an issue at the front desk. They only gave a small amount at a time to accommodate everyone. Compared to the Dominican Republic (where they refuse to give you change) it wasn't so bad.

It was our 6th wedding anniversary and when we got back from an excursion our butler prepared a romantic bubble bath for us with rose petals, candles and champagne. It was a very nice touch.

Booking our excursions was pretty easy. I usually dread this part because most resorts are so pushy. Here it was pretty straight forward and fast. We did the Red Locks party boat and had a terrific time and we also visited the Dunns River Falls. That was nice as well. If you want to go shopping the Taj Mahal shops were nice. It is much more secure and less annoying than the local market they bring you too. That was way too stressful an experience. If you go to the Taj Mahal shops visit Mama Marley's. The food is yummy and it is a nice bar.

We travelled with another couple and definitely had a terrific time. Jamaica is beautiful and the hospitality was great! Overall we can't complain because we booked the resort at a very inexpensive price. Just keep in mind, it is cheap for a reason. If you book knowing that, you should be fine. I would definitely recommend this place but be prepared that it is not 5 star luxury like they advertise it to be.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 23614. It seemed far from everything. We had to walk far to get to the entertainme...
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  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Katrina S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MarvelisS, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded June 7, 2014

Dear Guest,

Thank you for submitting your comments. We're glad you enjoyed our facilities, small surprises and restaurant service while staying at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, only adults.

We have taken appropriate actions for improvement and we have communicated with the head of department to send their comments. Thus, situations like that says we will not return repeated.

Thank you again.

Receive our most cordial greetings

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2014

My husband and I have just returned from a one week vacation at this lovely resort. It was very clean and luxurious and the food was great! The staff went well above the norm to make you feel welcomed. The restaurants were exceptional and the waiters very friendly, especially Damian Morgan at the Picasso. When booking it worth paying the extra $$ to stay in the Don Pablo section (Adults Only)!!

  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank ChrisyE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Social Media Coordinator at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded June 12, 2014

Dear Guest,

We are pleased to read that you enjoyed our services and the special care of our employees. We will forward your comments to Mr Damian Morgan. Thank you very much.

Kind Regards

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Reviewed June 3, 2014

Was here in October '13, slower part of the season. This was a last-minute thing, upgraded everything I could having never been to this resort or Jamaica. Wound up getting a private chauferred car to the resort, wound up in the private, adult-only end of the resort with free 24-hour room service, no-kiddo private pool, private bar etc. If I hadn't done that, doubt I would've enjoyed the trip - with all that, trip was great. Room was on the far end overlooking the private pool, cool balcony, great views. We ate way too much room service as we were there for some hedonism, not cultural enrichment, and it was awesome, and not very expensive for what we got. Would do again as a last-minute getaway.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Coolihoma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded June 12, 2014

Dear Guest,

We're glad you enjoy your stay in our Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection.

Thanks for sharing your experience on TripAdvisor upgrade, we want to see you again soon!

Yours sincerely

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Reviewed June 1, 2014

We are just back from a fabulous 2 weeks spent at the Grand Bahia Principe Luxury Don Pablo Collection in Runaway Bay, Jamaica, May 19 to May 31, 2014! We were assigned room 24707!

We landed with a few hours delay in a torrential rain! Not starting the holiday on the right foot.

But for the rest of our time in Jamaica it was sun & warmth, excellent food (buffet or à la carte), cold drinks and very friendly smiles! And the Adults only sections are well appreciated. Don’t get me wrong as we have kids of our own but it is nice to enjoy some times alone! Loll! Yeah Mon!

When we arrived at the Luxury Don Pablo, we were met by Loraine Broderick, the Executive Assistant Manager DPC ... We introduced ourselves and from that point on she memorized our name and anywhere we would go on the resort and see her she made a point to come and say Hello! She is assisted by, Cardell, Sanita, Nicole and Victoria. What a wonderful staff...always trying (and succeeding!) to answer your every demands and always with a smile.

This is a fantastic resort, not only because of the beauty and location but also because of ALL the personnel. From the gardeners, pool staff, cleaning staff, waiting staff, maids and management, the interaction with us was always very friendly and welcomed.

I will mentioned a few names again but these are the representative of the personnel: our made Vivienna, and some of the excellent waiting staff Ralston, Sasha, Shane, Tommy, Holly, Alwayne, Sabreena, Lamor, Latisha, Shanakae and the list goes on. These all work very hard to make your stay enjoyable and memorable so please leave a few extra dollars ... Not needed but really appreciated.

Trips into the surrounding areas with shuttle drivers or taxi drivers is fun as they will show you and explain the various sites of importance and believe me some of these guys are really well informed and knowledgeable.

We shopped at the different stores in Ocho Rios and again we were welcomed with smiles and friendly people and you can barter some.

We also went to the Dunn’s River Falls and did the climb assisted by our excellent guide Shawn! You have to do this ... And be ready to spend a few more bucks ... Guide tip, DVD and lots of local people selling their stuff ... But if you do not want to buy anything, a polite no thank you will get you out ... No problems ... Yeah Mon!

All in all to say that we will definitely go back to Jamaica and enjoy their friendly hospitality!

Thanks DPC and thanks Jamaica!

Yeah Mon!

Sylvia & Guy

  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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9  Thank Carribean_Taz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Guest Relations Manager at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2014

Dear guest,

Thank you so much for taking the time to let us know and sharing your experience with our reviewers in Trip Advisor and we hope to see you very soon in our Resort Luxury Runaway Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection the best luxury experience in Jamaica.

Yours sincerely,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection

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Reviewed June 1, 2014

It's a joke and not a 5 stars hotel, not even close. Probably 3.5 stars, no more than that.
The owners and managers of this place should be ashamed of themselves to call it a 5 star hotel. I would be less irritated if it honestly called itself a 3.5 stars. It seems like they're trying to be 5 stars, but going about it the wrong way. They are trying to cut costs in all aspects, and as a result, everything from service to food suffered. Please, charge more if you have to, but make sure you are able to provide a better experience with better service, better food, etc....!
I read a lot of the reviews before booking it, and I knew that it's not as luxurious a place as they advertised it to be, but I really hoped for the better as there were so many great reviews.
Food:
Almost everyone said it had some tasty food! Forget it! We were not satisfied with any of their meals with maybe one exception. The buffets of Luxury Bahia and Grand Bahia are the same thing! I went especially to check the various food in the buffets of both places, and the luxury buffet had just 1 extra type of cheese, 1 different soup, smoked salmon, and mangos. The rest is all the same! What's the point of even keeping that place open?!
Whoever cooks this food just wants to make it fast and doesn't care about taste! I eat much better food at home than here! The food is fast food quality, or the type you find in some mall food courts! I hoped to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables in Jamaica... Not in this hotel! Watermelons have no taste. Honey dew melons were ok, mangos and oranges are good. We had to buy fruits outside the hotel, which were much better, real Jamaican fruits. Picasso restaurant had some decent tasting food from all. Japanese restaurant had the worst service ever! It took 45 minutes to get miso soup! 2 waitresses for 20 tables!
We were not allowed to order 1 extra spring roll after ordering 4 pieces of sushi. Really?! Is it so big of a deal in an all inclusive hotel to serve 1 extra spring roll? Ridiculous!
Every day it's the same food here, doesn't matter what international cuisine they aim to be. I can't wait to get back home and finally eat something tasty! This food will keep you alive, and prevent you from starving to death but that's about it... The Ocean side snack bar has even worse tasting food, just jerk chicken is good.

Every food place worked by particular timing. We felt all 8 days that we had to run by their time and couldn't really enjoy our pace of the day. We had to run to breakfast by 10am, then lunch time is 1-3pm. So if you sleep in and miss breakfast... Done! You will starve till 1pm, or order the room service which had the smallest menu ever, and there was not much to pick.
Oh, the snack ocean bar opens at 12 and closes at 5 I believe , but I couldn't eat that food! So for us there was no food in the resort from 10am to 1pm, and from 3pm to 6pm, which is really annoying! It seemed we had no time to relax on the beach because we always had to check the time and not to be late for buffet! Awful! Other 5 star resorts have maximum of 30 minutes break in between breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner. Really depressing, besides being unsatisfied with food, we had to run by hotel time to get it!
I don't want to check the time on vacation, I want to relax and eat any time I want, not when they want me to eat!
Service:
The service here is not 5 star either. Everyone is nice if you ask them, but they don't rush to be thoughtful themselves and spoil you like in real 5 stars resort. The servers are overworked, too few to keep up with all their duties. It might be the fault of managers who try to cut the cost on the stuff. First day we left some tips for our waitress on the table of the buffet, and some other guy (in black&grey vest) who was not a waiter just stole the tips from the table and ran away! What kind of people work there????

The other incredibly bad thing is their towel system! When we checked in, they gave us 2 towels, which we were supposed to carry around with us to a pool area or a beach. To get new towels you had to bring these 2 towelsto the lobby!!!! So now besides running by hotel time to be able to eat, we carry everywhere these towels!!!! Why can't we just get them outside the pool area or on the beach and leave them there at the end of the day?! I saw a lot of people carry towels back to rooms and dry them on the balcony. Why do you want to reuse the towels that are all in sweat after outside heat and probably have a layer of sunscreen on it?

The "Do not disturb sign" on the rooms' doors is a joke too!
It's so loose that every time flys away from the door. So if you put the sign and you want some privacy, you probably won't get it. If you put the sign about cleaning - you never know either! All those signs that flew away and were on the floor, picked up by smbd and put on your door. So you never know what's outside your door and if you get housekeeping services when you want them.
Is it that hard to make new door signs for the hotel to resolve this issue?
I'm sure everyone is aware of it because those signs are on the floor every day!

One good thing about this place is a beach! Quiet ocean, almost no waves, very shallow water for around 100 meters, beautiful nature and trees around. Actually the landscape design all over the resort is beautiful!

  • Stayed: April 2014, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank Indigo777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Guest Relations Manager at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2014

Dear user of Trip Advisor,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with us ,however It is always concerning when guests are not completely satisfied with some of our facilities, however we really appreciate this feedback that represents an opportunity to improve our services, products and human resources.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us for any further assistance or requirements for you next visit to our Resort always your home in Jamaica.

Yours faithfully,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection

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Reviewed May 30, 2014

excellent the food were good, the beaches were safe, the staff were very friendly.the activies were good,the service were excellent. i already told some of my friends about luxury bahia. they said they want to experience it also. i will be returning again

  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Molly R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Customer Servic... B, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded May 31, 2014

Dear Molly,

Yours satisfaction is our best reward.
Thank you for letting us know how much you enjoyed our services and facilities.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for further assistance for your next visit at our wonderful Resort, Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection here in Jamaica.

Always at your disposal,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection

Address: Salt Coopers, Runaway Bay, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Runaway Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Runaway Bay
#3 Luxury Hotel in Runaway Bay
#3 Spa Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Runaway Bay
Price Range: $223 - $475 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection 4.5*
Number of rooms: 525
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 3 lake-style pools 3 Jacuzzis Large sun terrace with gardens, sun umbrellas and loungers Pool and beach towel service BAHIA SPA (20% discount on some treatments) Sports facilities: gym, 2 tennis courts, volleyball court, football pitch Water activity centre Motorised sports (additional charge) Entertainment amphitheatre Wedding gazebo WiFi access in the lobby (free) and in rooms (additional charge) 2 main restaurants 5 speciality restaurants 5 Bars 1 Snack bar Exclusive terrace bar serving Premium drinks Private check-in/out Late check-out subject to availability 18 hole golf course. Pueblo Principe: stores, live music, shows, bars and disco. Rooms 70 Deluxe Junior Suites Room facilities: Four poster king size bed or 2 full size beds Pillowtop mattresses Air conditioning Ceiling fan Direct phone line (additional charge for external calls) Sitting are with sofa Balcony or terrace with sea view Fully-equipped bathroom with separate shower, hydromassage bath tub, wash basin, magnifying mirror and hair dryer Bathro be and slippers Don Pablo Collection amenities Radio alarm clock with iPod docking station Flat screen satellite TV Coffee-making facilities Mini-bar Ironing set Beach towels in rooms 24 hour room service Butler service in rooms (available on request) Evening turndown service Pillow menu Safe (no additional charge) Internet and international newspapers and magazines in the Club House WiFi (no additional charge 24H) Aroma menu Bahia 'au Naturel' (over 18s only): The hotel has a nudist bathing area apart from the other areas ... more   less 
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