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Beaches Ocho Rios Resort & Golf Club
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4,327 - 4,332 of 4,514 reviews
Reviewed March 4, 2005

Before we had children, we vacationed at several Sandals properties. We had a blast every time. Always good food, comfortable rooms, friendly staff, etc.

So now, 2 children later, we decided to try Beaches. We were there 2/17-2/23. We had a terrific vacation! The food was very good with a wide variety. They went out of there way to make my 6 year old son PB&J, which was not on the menu/buffet, for lunch every day.

The staff as always was friendly and capable. The room (Luxury Family Suite) was clean and comfortable with an amazing view from the furnished balcony of the ocean. I had to call to request extra towels a few times and they were delivered promptly each time.

The beach was where we spent most of our time. The kids loved it, and so did we. They take your drink order and deliver it to your lounge chair! The water was clean and warm.

The pool was surprisingly COLD. I forced myself into it anyway. The kids wouldn't even go in. That was a dissapointment.

The Sesame character were a huge hit with my 4 year old daughter. They interact well with the children and have no problem hanging around after the show to take pictures with the kids.

After we landed in Montego Bay, and finally cleared customs (2 1/2 HOUR LINE) we were pleasantly surprised to find a sort of reception lounge for Beaches guests. Nice comfortable couches, cold beer and softdrinks. Wonderful after a long flight and even longer customs ordeal. We opted not to take the 2 1/2 hour bus ride. Instead we charted a small plane
($300-$400 USD) and made it there in 25 minutes. We did however take the bus ride back. Its not a bad trip. It goes fast. There is a lot to see. The bus driver was more like a tour guide than a driver.

You can have a great time if you just relax. This is Jamaica mon. They don't keep the same pace we do in the States. I think the people who had negative comments about this place would have negative comments about anywhere they stayed. Don't believe it. This is a great FAMILY RESORT.

We loved this place so much we are going back next month. WE CAN'T WAIT!!! Irie

  • Stayed: February 2005
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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13  Thank abepub
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 27, 2005

All I can say it that it is "okay". The kids had fun, which was the most important thing for us (3 kids).

We had booked the oceanfront room and didn't get it. Met a very nice family while there and they had the concierge level and so their experience was better than ours.

Our refrigerator was never restocked the entire 5 days we were there. Drank the couple of diet cokes and sprites that were in it and that was it. Concierge level has restocking of fridge and alcohol available in your room.

Food was better than average. At the buffet most of the time as the wait for the Italian restaurant was always 45 mins - 1 hour long. Buffet food, however, was very good. Liked that the BBQ Park had ice cream, soda and popcorn available all throughout the day to come get on your own, so it was very nice for the kids. Ate at Arizonas restaurant one evening and the food and service were very good.

Pools are ICE cold. My 5 year old wouldn't go into them at all, and she loves the water. She would only go into the "hot tub" next to the slide pool. It was not very hot but was the temp I would have hoped the regular pools to be. Tried getting in myself but it was PAINFUL cold. My other two kids toughed it out as they wanted to use the water slides.

Beach very small. That was the biggest disappointment for us. Had hoped for soft sand. It is compacted and hard with lots of rocks. Heard that Negril has much nicer beaches.

Beds very hard, we asked 3 times for an extra pillow before getting one. (It always, 'no problem' - then you don't see the help again). Got it a day later. Had to wait 2 hours for towels in order to shower up after a day in the sun. They "were out" bath towels for the hotel???? OK. Sat in swimsuit in room for over an hour before I realized that they weren't coming back. Tracked down someone who finally got me a towel.

I think (of course! :-) ) that I'm a reasonable person. Jamaica is not the place for us - Beaches Boscobel is very average, not worth what we paid to go there. REally should have gotten the concierge level as that was what we paid for, we are working with our travel agent to be reimbursed on that one. Make sure you are at that level as you have nicer rooms, stocked fridge and the ability to make reservations at the restaurants.

The trip from the airport is well over 2 hours long. We were told it was an hour by our travel agent. No way you can make it in an hour. Long, bumpy ride. Dead dogs in road, near misses with pedestrians and other vehicles. Yikes.

Plus side = Good food. Sesame Street Characters were a big hit with my 5 year old.

10  Thank 63SaraD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 24, 2005

We just returned from Boscobel with our 2 children. aged 7 and 5. We had a wonderful time! True, the beach is small, but all that you really need as long as your are not looking to walk for miles. It is quite small by Caribbean standards! However the pool area is great, lots of chairs and no need to get up at the crack of dawn and stake your claim, even though the resort was full when we were there. GREAT for young children. The bad review commented on children without manner....how is that a fault of the hotel? Beaches is NOT the place to go if you do not have or even like children!
My kids WANTED to go to the club every night and have their own dinner with the friendly and experienced nannies and their new friends! This left time for my husband and I to have a nice 2 or 3 hour dinner on our own. The Venetian Italian resturant is by far the best. Food plentiful, hot and delicious! Friday night seafood buffet was FANTASTIC all the lobster with butter and shrimp you could eat! Truly very good! The rooms do smell a bit damp but quite clean. You are in the tropics and it gets hot & humid...what can you expect! The rooms are ALL very large with 2 doubles or a king, and seperate living area with pull out for the kids! Staff are great, very friendly. Entertainment at night was OK. They kept you busy enough in the day if you wish, but did not pester you to join in at all. Kid's pool is really nice. Large and clean with lots of chairs. GREAT idea with all day slushies, popcorn, & ice-cream for children. Lots of good craft activities for kids as well. The property is old and it shows, but we truly had a great time. Cannot wait to go back in the fall and try Beaches Negril!

  • Stayed: February 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
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1  Thank KPRP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2005

We went to Beaches Boscobel in early October 2004. I had a lot of concerns about visiting Jamaica in general and Beaches in particular. Frommers' book on Jamaica said many parts of the island were unsafe, and the handful of poor reviews of the resort on Tripadvisor made me wary. However, the all-inclusive format made it appealing for a family.

We took a redeye from Los Angeles, and arrived in Montego Bay at the crack of dawn. Sandals/Beaches has a very nice lounge in the airport, if you have to wait for transportation. We were greeted by a Beaches rep, who directed us to the bus stop. We took the wild bus ride from Sangster Airport to Beaches, with a brief stop at Yows! rest stop (I suspect all of the drivers get a kickback to stop here, about midway between Mo Bay and Ocho Rios). The ride is a rough one, but it gives you a chance to see the island far more than flying. When we arrived, our room was not ready (not surprising because of our very early arrival), we were tired, and we caught the very tail end of the breakfast buffet.

It took a couple of hours to get our room: a very nice room in the main building, that had an ocean view and a private balcony. The room was huge, a suite really. The bathroom was not the fanciest, the hair drier did not work, and the sink drained very slowly. Now, if we wanted to be very anal-retentive, we could have let this ruin our vacation. But we quickly learned that Jamaica is a very laid back place, and you should be laid back too. If you take that approach, you will have an outstanding vacation.

The food was very good at all of the restaurants. The problem was that there was just too much of it! The buffet mixed typical American/British-types of food along with some Jamaican dishes. The dinner buffet was outstanding, serving lobster, prime rib, and other well prepared dishes. The Italian, Caribbean, and Southwest restaurants also had excellent meals, each with a special focus.

The beach was small, and a bit dirty when we arrived. But we remembered that Hurricane Ivan hit the area only two weeks before, and we attributed the storm for the disarray. Sure enough, as time progressed, the sand and water got better and better. The Hobie Cats, water trikes, and other water sports were readily available, and any wait was minimal. The glass bottom boat ride and snorkeling trips were fun, although seemingly a bit short in duration. We did see an old pirate-type cannon out on the reef - a highlight of our snorkeling trip.

The pools were all very nice, and two activities directors did their best to keep people engaged in water aerobics, and other pool-side sports. The bars were excellent, although the quality of drinks varied, depending on the bar tender. Some were more skilled than others, but the quality of the ingredients were excellent (particularly the Appleton Rum), and there was more than sufficient quantity.

Our daughter just loved the kids camp. In fact, she kept insisting on going over to participate in a lot of activities. The staff appeared to be very engaged and kind to the children.

The staff was extremely friendly. There was even a worker painting a stairwell, who stopped to chat with us and told us how nice the Blue Mountains are to visit. It must be very hard to deal with the public, particularly for difficult and demanding guests who expect to have everything perfect and to be treated like royalty. But if you show courtesy and respect, you will not only enjoy the trip more, but the staff will be more responsive.

I think many of the people who complain about Beaches are people who will always find fault in something. There was a family from New York there, and the father complained that he was used to staying at more 'high end' places. Later, we saw young son peeing in the bushes near the pool. Hmmm, high end.

In a nutshell, if you let yourself have fun and don't nitpick every little thing, you will have an excellent time. I worked myself up over nothing based on negative reviews of Beaches. But if you take Jamaican philosophy to heart, that of 'No Problem, Mon', then you will enjoy Beaches Boscobel and love Jamaica.

10  Thank tradermort
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 22, 2005

Great food...Great staff...(especially Peter the chef , Roxanne from kids club and Nicholis the entertainment director) They are all there to make it a great experience. "Yes mon" is what you will hear as a response to most any request.

The ride from the airport is ridiculously long. 2:45 (with a 15 minute stop) on VERY dangerous roads. Dead dogs and collisions along the way is a problem. I suggest the extra $$ for the flight to Boscobel from Montego Bay.

Beach is small and the watersports all close down with the slightest wind pickups. Don't fear the local hairbraiders or shell salesmen...they are kind and just want to make a living.

Terrible phone and internet access...make sure you rent a phone first or arrange for yours to have Jamaican access. Jamaican C&W blocks everything. Hotel charges big $$$ for calls.

Overall, great kid place if you can get there!!!

8  Thank maxersize
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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