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“Top shelf food, drink, service, amenities, & staff - not stuffy - comfortable luxury”

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Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Rose Hall
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed September 23, 2012

We have been going to Jamaica and other parts of the Caribbean for years. We have been around and are not wide-eyed and impressed with everything just because it's our first time or something like that. I think you will find this a fair and balanced review. I will try to compare and contrast this resort to other Jamaican resorts as all of them offer something different and like most things in life, your satisfaction with the resort depends on what you are looking for. Please click on my name to see other reviews of Couples Negril and Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton (GPLH). If you find this and these reviews helpful, please click the helpful vote link.
This is certainly the best place we have stayed based on what we want from a vacation: stellar food; well appointed room; attentive, friendly service; intimate and fun pool bar; engaging staff; exceptionally clean; picturesque; hobie-cat sailing and snorkeling ; private room balcony; premium bar brands and well stocked in-room mini-bar; and excursions close by, if that's your thing. The ambiance is of a well-run resort from the moment you check in and receive your welcome mimosa. The hallways have music playing. The room is excellent, the bathroom is beautifully appointed with marble and glass enclosed commode and shower with separate dressing areas for each person. The minibar is stocked and will be replenished with whatever you ask for (we like martini's so we got martini & rossi vermouth, vodka and green olives, all delivered within 30 minutes of asking - and they called from the concierge to make sure it was all good.) The bathroom/closet area is closed off with its own door for additional quiet when one of you gets up early - but don't want to disturb the other. There are two closets and ample storage - unlike Couples and GPLH. The room is quiet, no hallway or neighbor noise. The three layers of curtains are dark so you'd swear it was night until you opened them - good for sleeping in, if that's your thing. The views from the room are all good and I recommend the ocean front; but wouldn't hesitate with ocean view either. The balcony has a couch and a swing for two. Beware: while many of the rooms have the balcony separated from the adjacent room with a full floor to ceiling wall for total privacy, others just have a 3/4 high wall between adjacent balconies, removing your privacy. "Hi neighbor! We're Bud and Buzzy Crumhunger from Frostbite Falls, Minnesota. Whatcha got there? A drink and a relaxing book...?" So unless you don't mind that, ask for a room with the full wall. If you can't get one, rest assured the guests are generally nice, but why roll the dice if you don't have to? We ate room service on the balcony some mornings and the privacy was what we wanted.
Room service is included and is 24x7, timely, fresh and as high quality as the restaurants/buffets. There's different selections for different times of the day, but always good choices. (Generally I found if it wasn't on the room service menu, but they had it, and I ordered it, they'd accommodate anyway, so no harm in asking.) The maids are on time and the room was visited at least twice a day to clean and turndown (chocolates on pillow and aromatherapy ignited and scenting the room). We never returned to find our room hadn't been cleaned - unlike GPLH and Couples Negril. (They have sensors to know when you are in the room or not.) You are able to select for your room the types of pillows you want and what aromatherapy scent you want in your room - try it, it's cool; their website has information.
The bars serve top-shelf brands - Grey Goose, Crown Royal, etc... from the lobby bar to the pool bar. And the bar tenders know how to mix drinks. At Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton (GPLH) they did not have top shelf brands and many bartenders didn't know how to mix drinks deviating from the Caribbean fare. (At Couples Negril it was top shelf brands and knowledgeable bartenders.) The piano bar in the lobby is a nice place to hang-out with great drinks, espresso and coffees; complimented by piano or guitar music.
These folks FOCUS on service! Attentive, prompt, great follow-up! I called for martini fixins and it was there within 1/2 hour. We needed the ipod docking station fixed - there within 15 min. (and not some skeevy maintenance guy: he was professional, attentive, fixed it and out he went. No awkward lingering looking for a tip or something.) Room service is delivered promptly for the time you request and it is fresh from the kitchen - not soggy, wilty or full of water from condensation from the lid. The concierge routinely called to follow-up to insure our requests were met and met to our satisfaction: folks, you just can't beat the work ethic and attentiveness! Don't get me wrong, we're not Thurston Von Snootington, the third, and his wife Lovey von Howell - we are just normal people -- and this is the services Iberostar offers, so take advantage!
The la carte restaurants have limited selections, like any well run restaurant - the menu is limited but the selections are fresh, perfectly done, beautifully plated and evidence the work of professional chefs. There is Japanese, Italian, Surf & Turf and Gourmet in addition to the buffet. Advice: Japanese: unless you're dying for the hibachi experience, sit at a table alone and you'll get your food faster as you're not seated with a dozen other people and waiting for all their orders to be taken etc. (You can still order hibachi stuff, they'll cook it and bring it to you from one of the active tables.) Surf and turf features filet mignon and lobster tail - done to perfection, as are the side dishes. The portions in a la carte are well sized and not humongous - which is good for the waistline - although you can always order more if you desire. The buffets are a leap above other resorts at which we've stayed. The selections are varied, fresh and creative: lunch had a roasted suckling pig (apple in mouth and all); lobster ceviche; pork or chorizo or chicken jerk; varieties of cheeses; shrimp, hamburgers (no patties, real hamburgers); fresh salad fixin's and on and on. We went in September, the off-season. From our perspective, this was great as the resort was not crowded. However, this also meant that the buffet was not open every day for dinner and the a la carte restaurants were open/closed some of the days. Be aware of this if you don't care for an a la carte dinner and want a buffet for dinner; or if you expect all restaurants open each day.
The rooms come with a butler, which is really a hands-on extension of the concierge service. I've read some reviews with comments about never seeing the butler. Well, you really should not see the butler - after all - he's a butler, not a footman, my Lord. If you call the service and make a request, they do address it immediately and with follow-up. E.g.: "Please have the butler run a bath, What time would you like that, 3 PM please, Ok, thank you. Then at 3 PM go to your room: rose pedals on the floor leading to the jacuzzi tub bubble bath with rose pedals on the suds... Nice! Oh, and also ask for a bucket of champagne; but DONT turn on the Jacuzzi jets with bubble bath in the tub -- unless you want an "I Love Lucy'esque" episode with bubbles cascading throughout the bathroom! The butler and concierge will also book restaurant reservations, insure your room is made-up by a certain time, and generally insure you have a great stay.
The staff around the pool (aka Star Friends) are energetic twenty-something's that are charged with keeping people happy and engaged. These are very hard working folks who are responsible for running the contests, the entertainment at night, and generally checking with you to make sure everything is OK. In fact, they regularly ask if everything is OK and if they can help. There are a good number of them. GPLH didn't have this kind of a team and Couples Negril had it on a limited low-key basis. Even if you like vegging at the pool bar, and maintaining a low-key sedate non-scheduled day (like me) they may lure you out long enough to participate in a contest (horseshoes, bocce) and some of the pool events near the pool bar (walking on the water carpet) -- these are fun to watch even if you don't participate. Remarkably, they know everyone's name, they have a talent for it. At times, they can be a little invasive, but not a big issue. But if this is not your sort of thing AT ALL - something to consider. Finally, Mid-morning, at the pool, the food staff serve fresh fruits, or sandwiches or fresh cut coconuts for the replenishing coconut water... nice touch.
This resort is adults only. It had a good clientele when we went - a good mix of honeymooners, people in their 30s, 40s, 50s and 60's and on up. The crowd was a good crowd, and even though there were groups of couples who had come together, they didn't take things over and get obnoxious. Maybe this was luck of the draw, I don't know. For those with kids: please note that this is one of three resorts that are side by side. The one connected to the Grand has families and is really nice as well - having not stayed there, I can't attest, but in our walks through the property, it appeared to have the same amenities and quality-mindedness. Note: from the Grand you can go to the other resorts. The other resorts cannot come to the Grand - security is at the doors and on the beach and it is enforced. Which is good since adults only should mean adults-only.
More about the staff: from the front desk, to bellmen, to butler, to housekeeping and bartenders, all are friendly and remind you that this is your vacation and they want you to be happy. "No, I will do that for you mon, this is your vacation, you work the rest of the year hard enough". (Now that's what I'm talking about!) The staff does not have their hand out for tips. They are professional in that regard. But, they will not turn one down if offered - it is not mandatory, so no obligation. After all - you are paying plenty to be there each day, don't forget.
Only two unfortunate encounters with staff: one day one of the lifeguards at the pool bar asked me to try on my sunglasses to see how they were and then asked for my sunglasses as a gift - apparently he liked them and thought it would be a good little tip for him or something. I said no and he stated, well I'm off tomorrow, leave them for me as a gift... Ummmm... really not cool. And as I pointed out to him -- they were $250 Maui Jim's I don't think so... second instance was with one of the guys at the Hobie Cat hut ... He sat and watched me and another fellow from the resort finish our sailing and drag the boat on shore, then came down to help us at the very end and then asked for a tip because he works so hard. Really? Especially after landing the boat on shore and dragging it myself - not good. I said, "no not now", and it was over, but come on. Note: the people at the hobie cat/snorkel rental are not employees of Iberostar, and all of the other staff were really great. The staff at the hobie cat hut are there to sell you excursions for diving, etc., but not a pressure sale at all. Reminder: hobie-cat sailing and snorkeling and kayaks are included, no charge.
But please don't take these two examples above as representative of the experience. The rest of the staff are great. I know that Iberostar management reads these reviews and takes them seriously, so I included it here.
Entertainment: GPLH had great bands at night. Iberostar has a nightclub in the next door property with a band at night, as we didn't go, I can't comment. But I understand from people it was good. In additon, the staff at Grand put on shows at night. Generally, entertaining musical fair from 10 PM to 11 PM - timed nicely in terms of duration and they work hard.
The Grand has a cigar bar and a billiard room -- nice thing is people are using these facilities, so it's fun to stop by and hang out. Also, there is free internet PCs in the billiard room - great for keeping up with some emails.
This place fosters a friendly, fun, intimate feel at the pool bar. Unlike GPLH where the pool bar was large and very understaffed and not intimate. Also, the pool bar at Grand is situated so that there is shade wherever you sit, good relief from the sun if you want to hang-out, not so with GPLH. And I already mentioned Grand has name brands whereas GPLH does not. Both Couples and Iberostar pool bars have views of the sea from the bar - an plus for these resorts. GPLH does not have this from the main pool bar. GPLH does have a good number of isolated pools, one at the spa and one for adults only - to get away from it all. That was a nice feature.
Pools: Four of them next to each other, zero-horizon, stepped down to the sea. Each has its own level of activity, so you can go from one to the other to just float around or to engage in volleyball or pool bar fun. There are no towel cards here (yea!) so you can take four and leave them on the chaises or take to your room. Much nicer than tracking towels. The bathrooms throughout the resort are CLEAN and cleaned continually. I must say, that was the story with the GPLH as well - at GPLH there were fresh flowers in all the bathrooms. Couples Negril, eh, nope - bathrooms were pretty gross for the most part - part of the bohemian island feel I guess?
If you are looking for a nice nude beach, this is not your resort - go to Couples Negril.
If you are looking for a small intimate resort with an outstanding, placid, white sand beach with floats and a jungle feel and don't mind lower quality rooms (Holiday inn-ish circa 1970 and a step down in food from 4.5 star to 2.5 - 3 star): go to Couples Negril.
If you want locals on the beach from which to buy things to smoke (uh hem), go to Couples Negril. (Couples security keeps this very controlled and limited at Negril - but there are a handful of locals walking the beach, if you walk down the beach, off-property.)
The Iberostar Grand has no nude beach, is intimate with a decent beach - a band of pebbles to cross before getting into the water, (not bad but not as nice as Negril), an upscale well maintained always cleaned resort feel, vs. jungle feel at Negril, and no vendors on the beach (except for early AM, a guy will float by in a Kayak selling wares - wood carvings and stuff.)
GPLH: very limited beach, but they do have an adult beach for nude bathing that is secluded and near the adult pool bar - see my review of GPLH for a more detailed appraisal.
Given the choice between GPLH and Iberostar, I would choose Iberostar with no hesitation. But again, it depends on what you're looking for. Please take a look at the reviews I did for Couples Negril and GPLH for full information, rather than me repeat it here.
Attention to details: On our 25th anniversary, we arrived at the Gourmet Restaurant. We were greeted by name and wished a happy anniversary - how they knew us, I don't know. At the end, we received a special dessert with inscribing in chocolate, Happy Anniversary. Upon returning to our room, there was a bucket of champagne and two covered dishes, each had a white chocolate sculpture filled with semi-sweet chocolate mousse. All because they care to make it an outstanding experience.
I hope you found this review helpful. Combined with my other reviews, I think it gives a balanced picture of some Jamaica resort alternatives. We will certainly return to Iberostar, but will be sure to do oceanfront and full wall between balconies. The ocean view rooms looked great as well, don't get me wrong. And inside, they are all the same, it is an Iberostar design that is used for each room. Oh! And one other thing! Ibersostar is 20 min. from the airport, Negril is 1 h 40 m and GPLH is about 30 min.
Stand-out staff: Natalie Davis - front desk, was expecting us and had our room ready for early arrival; Moses - Manager of bars/restaurants - he seemed to be everywhere 24x7; Nordia & Sentillman - bartenders pool bar - outstanding, attentive, fun; Samantha, G Money, Brandon, Lucky, Kiki - entertainment staff - these folks were so nice and engaging - they made the stay better, no lie. The bartenders here are engaging, conversational, Sentillman has bar tricks - makes it fun.

Room Tip: Ocean View - Floor 3 - the 5 series rooms.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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36  Thank GetAround808
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your generous review. We were ecstatic to learn that our rooms, service, restaurants, cuisine and amenities met your high standards. We appreciate that you opted to stay at the Iberostar Grand Rose Hall after enjoying other trips at other resorts in the Caribbean. Your satisfaction is of course our ultimate goal, as we are all too aware that it is only through providing a flawless vacation that we can hope to gain your long-term loyalty. To this end, it was most inspiring to learn that we had provided you with a truly memorable vacation.

It was a pleasure to have been given the opportunity to serve you and we hope that you will be returning soon.


Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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4,816 - 4,822 of 6,720 reviews

Reviewed September 23, 2012

rooms, bar service, activities, shows and resturant all excellent. only italian food at specialty resturant not up to par. all else was fab. would go again. having access to other properties was a plus and water sports.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with friends
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Review collected in partnership with Iberostar
6  Thank tessathequeen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your generous review. We are sorry that your experience at the Italian Restaurant was below expectations. It was a pleasure to have been able to serve you and when next you are planning another Caribbean get-away, we hope that the Iberostar Grand Rose Hall will be foremost on your mind.

Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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Reviewed September 21, 2012

A little play on the Jay Z song title to catch your eye.

To be clear, there were no problems with this resort, or our vacation.

We have read all the reviews of this place - good and bad.
We literally have an answer/rebuttal for any complaints you have read about.
So please feel free to message us with any questions.

If you are friendly people who are looking to get into the Jamaica vibe, meet some genuinely nice people, and RELAX, then this is your place. As they say, “No Problem” “Ya Mon” and “Irie” (look it up.) If you are a diva or type-A who can’t relax, then maybe not.

Put it this way: if you’re reading these reviews, you’re already seriously considering IGRH, and you should book with no fear.
Read on for details if you need to.

OK, now on to the review.

Immediately on arrival, greeted with ice towel, and mimosa (appreciated, and appreciated)
Bellman very courteous, quick. Never felt like our bags were in jeopardy.
Check in clerk (Dane) nice and very calming. We arrived in “travel mode” and felt like rushing, etc. Dane asked us to enjoy our drink, and he would take care of us. He did.
Our butler asked if we needed anything and assured us he was a phone call away. He was there for us within 3 minutes whenever we called. Otherwise he did not bother us.
The Mini-bar attendant asked us what we wanted it stocked with, made a list and stuck to it all week!
The restaurant staff were all super attentive, but not in your face. Perfect.
Bottom line: Service staff were excellent.

We won’t bore you with details of the beautiful grounds, etc. You’ve seen the pictures. Paradise.

Room was very nice. Super clean, everything you need, and more. We particularly liked the robes/slippers, the mini-bar, nice TV, COMFY bed and pillows, nice furniture. Huge closet, 2 full sinks, nice rain shower, huge tub and separate toilet. Nice scale in BR too. (Yikes!) Staff ALWAYS respected the Do Not Disturb and the Please Clean signs when posted. Much appreciated.

Food:
Must haves:
Coffee or cappuccino anywhere
Jerk chicken, pork and sausage (seriously) on beach day / BBQ day. The census was too low for beach party, but the BBQ at the buffet was awesome. Be sure to ask for jerk sauce too.
Scallop appetizer at Surf and Turf.
Lobster anywhere
Chocolate/hazelnut dessert from room service.
Coconut shrimp.

Take it or leave its:
Hamburgers
Nacho cheese sauce
Rice
Salad at buffet

Skip its:
Yogurt at buffet

Our favorite people:
At the pool bar: Oneill (play his little bar games), Kerry, Sentilman, Nordia. All a great team!
The concierge/butler staff
Kamar at the buffet
Palmer at Japanese
Brandon, $$G-Money$$, T.O., Short-cakes, and the rest of the Star Friends
Basil and Dane, Lifeguards
Dave, Jr. at omelet station, breakfast buffet.

Miscellaneous:
Bring lots of 1 and 5 dollar bills for tipping. It’s really all you need. (and pool bar doesn’t mind wet money.)
Gift shops take credit cards, will not charge to room.
Subscribe to an internet calling service; Skype, Fring, etc. to save money on calling home.
Free Wi-Fi in lobby, works well. Computers in computer room are slow and constantly restarting randomly. Bring your iPad or phone. Get username and password from concierge.
If you want to go to the Shops at Rose Hall, take the free shuttle, and be prepared to bargain. Lots of small gifts there, and lots of high-end jewelry. Coffee is cheaper there than gift shops at IGRH.
Order bottle of rum and/or champagne from room service.

Most of all, embrace the laid back attitude of Jamaica, and relax. You’ll enjoy yourself and you’ll live longer too. Have fun!!!

Room Tip: Ask for an upgrade to ocean view.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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15  Thank JTMinnesota
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your informative review. Your mention of the service of our staff, layout of the rooms, cuisine and your enjoyable trip will also serve to inspire our team. We are grateful to have been able to meet your discerning standards. It would be a pleasure to be able to host you again in the near future and we hope you will not hesitate to return.


Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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Reviewed September 20, 2012

all i can say is wow! what a great experience! went from sep 8 to 18. from the moment we arrived to the moment we left, everyone was always going above and beyond our needs and wants. all the star friends were so entertaining and did their best to share their time with all the guests. I will def miss bubbles, sammy, gmoney, shorty and the rest of the guys. the lobby bar bartendes were the best ive seen. Oneil is the best by far he can make a mean drink/shot. anything you want , he will make! orlando was great too! the beach girls were very good! Jodine was the fav! she was there every 10 mins makin sure we had everything we needed on the beach! all the restaurants were very good and service was one of the best! overall i would go back and not think twice! will never forget this honeymoon! best 10 days spent!

Room Tip: our room was ocean view and was the very 1st one right off the loby and it was very quiet and i love...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank ida-goldman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your delightful review. Your mention of the staff who made your honeymoon the wonderful success it so obviously was, will also serve to motivate those persons. We are aware that it is only through excellent service that we can hope to gain your loyalty. To this end, we hope that you will not hesitate to return in the near future. It would be an honor to serve you on the occasion of your Wedding Anniversary.

Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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Reviewed September 20, 2012

Have just returned from 2 weeks at the Grand.

During the two weeks the hotel (which holds about 500) never had more than about 120 and on average about 90 guests. As Brits we also go as part of a package holiday where flight, transfers and hotel are all included (this time with first choice).

On arrival, we got through the airport and security fairly quickly and was soon on the coach. The majority of the coach (about 30) seemed to get off at the Riu Montego Bay we got off at the Grand and one other couple at the Suites.

On arrival we were greeted with the cooling towel and drink. As we were celebrating our anniversary we were upgraded to an ocean front room, as part of the package we had already paid extra to upgrade the room (ocean view).

The room was superb, the only thing we didn't have was an iron - there was a space for it. However saying that, I had no intention of ironing so it wasn't a problem!! Reading the blurb in one of the iberostar magazines, if you had asked the butler, they would have done this for you. Our butler came about 30 mins after and explained a few things to us, we never saw him again. We saw another butler on our second week. This didn't bother us, we went to the concierge to book the restaurants. Due to the low number of guests the only concierge was on the second floor rather than one on every floor.

With the restaurants, we visited all the speciality ones twice, room service once and the buffet the other occasions for our evening meal, lunch was always at the pool/beachside restaurant and breakfast except twice when we had room service at the buffet.

The surf and turf was our favourite the steak was cooked to perfection, with the Italian and Japanese a close second. The gourmet was our least favourite, but that wasn't due to the food - the quality at every single meal was superb. Palmer in the Japanese restaurant wa great, the second time we went the chef just didn't have the showman skills of Palmer. Due to the lack of guests (see a theme here??), the buffet was closed most nights so you had to use the speciality restaurants, room service or the suites restaurant. Saying that, there were extra dishes that you could choose from which made life easier. We also saw guests with shorts or t shirts on. I suppose they allowed this slight slip in the dress etiquette as it could be argued by the guest that they didn't bring those type of clothes as they were going to eat only in the buffet restaurant. At all the restaurants the waiters/waitresses took time to explain dishes to you and generally chat about Jamaica.

The Star Friends were also great, happy to take your refusal if you didn't want to partake in any games and just chill or anything from the daily events. Again they took time to ask you how you were getting on and answering any questions you have on. The pirate beach party was superb, there were a few craft stalls, and Kiki, Bubbles, Shortcake, Storm and the rest of them got you involved with games which created a great atmosphere for the show.

There was never any problem getting a sun bed by any of the pools or beach. The beach itself was wonderful. Some reviews have said it was stoney. There is a band of pea shingle size stoned along the beach (about a foot wide), as you move towards the suites there are some more larger stones, but not what I would call a pebble beach. Yes there is seaweed, however, this is more like blades of grass, but I didn't think it was a problem and it didn't bother me. The fish will swim around you whether or not you feed them a bread roll and you can snorkel within a few feet from the beach. We also saw star fish and a sea urchin.

If you really want me to find fault with the hotel, and this is really petty, but I would change the salt and pepper pots in the speciality restaurants as they were the same as the buffet restaurant but they just stuck out like a sore thumb against the fine dining charger plates and cutlery. If that is all I can find wrong with a hotel it shows something about the standard of the hotel and the pride the staff take in working there.

We did go to the gyme whilst we were there which had plenty of machines and weights for everybody's ability (eating all that lovely food made it a requirement!).

Would I go back? Certainly, it may be more expensive than the majority of the other hotels in Montego Bay, but you do get your money worth and after listening to other travellers and the kind of holiday experience they were having made me glad I was staying where I was.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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7  Thank Macsoupdragon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your kind review. Your generous recommendation means a lot to us as it means that on your recent stay, we had successfully exceeded your expectations. It was a great pleasure to hear that your arrival and check-in went flawlessly. Your mention of the excellent cuisine, entertaining star friends and service will also go a far in encouraging our team of dedicated staff. We look forward to hosting you again and trust that you will not hesitate to return soon.

Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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Reviewed September 19, 2012

This was our 9th time to the Iberostar in Jamaica. We arrived 9/4 for 8 nights. Weather was perfect without even a drop of rain the whole time. The resort continues to offer top notch accommodations, food, beverage & ambiance. Everyone at the Grand welcomes us back with open arms. From managers to housekeepers all staff go out of their way to make you feel special. We have many friends there now and look forward to seeing them every time we return. The customer service continues to be exceptional by all the staff we encountered. In the Surf and Turf we ordered a special bottle of our favorite wine and found out that they were no longer carrying it but low and behold they came up a bottle just for us. Everything about the Grand is top notch. Not sure that you could find any better. We have traveled all over the Caribbean and Mexico but after finding this gem there is no reason to go anywhere else. If your looking for the best vacation of your life then try the Grand. You will not be disappointed.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank 20BestTime14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for continuing to make the Iberostar Grand Rose Hall, your vacation “home” when travelling to the Caribbean. Your continued patronage of our hotel means a lot to the Management and Staff, who look forward to seeing you at each visit. Your review will also serve to encourage our staff who work tirelessly to ensure that guests such as yourself have a positive impression of our service. We hope that you will come again soon and not hesitate to return in the near future.

Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 18, 2012

We did quite a bit of online research before we chose our Caribbean vacation destination and based on the great TA ratings we were sure this was going to be a 5 star experience. Perhaps our expectations were too high but we really didn't feel there was anything special about our experience at the Iberostar Grand Rose Hall.

I'll try and cover all aspects of the trip to help you understand why we give this resort only 2 stars. We do have several other Caribbean vacation experiences to compare against and this was by far our least favorite.

ARRIVAL AND CHECK-IN
Let's start with the arrival and check-in experience. We arrived to the Iberostar by private transfer from Raggae Travel which I would recommend. When we entered the resort premises we were totally underwhelmed. The resort is situated right off the highway with little security and the resort entrance is nothing different than you would find at a Holiday Inn or Best Western. It took a few moments for someone to greet us and when they did it seemed like they were in such a hurry that they didn't have time to give us any information. Others have talked about being greeted with a glass of champagne and a cold towel but that didn't happen for us until we were checking in. Before we arrived we had requested and purchased an oceanfront suite with a porch swing to relax in. At check-in we were informed that we were assigned an oceanfront suite and were directed to meet the bellman in the lobby who would take us to our suite. We waited for a couple of minutes and still no bellman. Finally the check-in clerk noticed we had not been helped and actually started to take us to our suite. As we proceeded to our room a bellman finally met us with our luggage and took us to our suite. Again, he seemed to be in such a hurry that he just dropped off the luggage and informed us that a butler would be in touch with us shortly. Well as we started to explore our room which will be covered later we went out to the balcony only to find that the balcony was much smaller than the others and it didn't have a porch swing and was completely exposed to the sun. It was a suite on the top floor of building 5 and I would not recommend at all. We were extremely disappointed and called the front desk and asked them to move us to a different suite with a swing and cover. They informed us that the only units available were on the first floor which was not our preference but beat having the sun beat down on you as you try and relax on the balcony. We told them that wouldn't be our first choice but if nothing else was available we'd take it. 20 minutes later the front desk clerk came to our room to help us move and informed us there was a 2nd floor suite available and took us to that unit. Well that unit was on the corner right next to the Iberostar Suites pool so we knew it was going to be noisy. I asked if there was anything else at all available and were told there wasn't. Keep in mind the resort was only at 38% capacity and as we later found out they completed closed off building 6 which was our preference based on the reviews read here. Very bad decision for a so called 5 star resort.

The Suite
The suite is really not a suite. It's no different than any other standard hotel setup. The rooms are not luxurious but are fairly well appointed. There truly is nothing special about the rooms. To call them suites is a misrepresentation in my estimation.

The Pools
There are 3 pools that are connected to one another but again nothing really special. In fact if you prefer to sit around the pool rather than the beach be prepared to spend most of the time in the sun. There is very little shade and where there are palapas you might have shade in the morning but by mid day your going to be in the sun and can move your lounge chairs to stay in the shade. Very bad design. There is a pool bar which is occupied primarily by smokers and heavy drinkers. There are no floaties to lounge on and you're just walking or swimming around a square pool. Nothing special at all.

The Beach
If you're a beach person you WILL NOT like this beach. It's man made and the sand is hard enough that vehicles will be driving all along the beach virtually all day. There are plenty of palapas and lounge chairs and the beach drink service was excellent. The beach area going into the ocean is extremely rocky for at least the first 15 feet going into the ocean. Really? Is this what a 5 star luxury resort offers? Not in my book.

The Restaurants and Food
We tried each one of the restaurants and had room service a few times. Our favorite restaurant was the Surf and Turf and enjoyed the Japanese restaurant but in no way was there any kind of WOW experience for us. We were completely disappointed with the Gourmet, Italian and buffet restaurants. In addition, i got sick after eating at the Italian and Japanese restaurants and the only common denominator was lobster so I must assumed the lobster was not properly cooked or prepared. We ate at the buffet restaurant for breakfast a few times and thought it was ok but nothing special. Room service was good, not great, but they delivered the food very quickly and it was hot.

The Butler
Only saw him a couple of times and he was definitely MIA.

The Staff
For the most part the staff was great and we really enjoyed Star Friends "Storm" and "Bubbles" They were great to hang with and they were both very entertaining. The beach wait staff were tremendous. We were puzzled by one situation on our last night involving housekeeping staff. Before we left for dinner we left our swim suits and shirts on the balcony to dry. When we returned from dinner we decided to enjoy the rest of our evening on the balcony and noticed that all of our clothes were removed from the air dry unit we left them on and were found tucked behind the outdoor couch. We tried to figure out why they would have done that and I have some suspicions but I'll leave it up to you to come to your own conclusions.

Overall, we were greatly disappointed and cannot recommend this resort if you're truly looking for a 5 star or luxury resort experience.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank yankeefan23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SantoValdez, Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica at Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall, responded to this reviewResponded September 27, 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for sharing your feedback regarding your recent vacation with us. We apologize if you thought your stay was below expectations. As is customary with most hotels in the Caribbean during less busy periods, we do close a block according to the occupancy levels.

It would have been helpful if you had requested to speak to the Public Relations Manager, who would have been only too happy to sit with you and discuss ways to improve on your stay. We are disappointed to hear that your first visit with us was not an enjoyable one.

We invite you to come again soon in order for us to show you our usual high levels of service our guests usually associate with our property, as your experience was not the typical Iberostar Grand Rose Hall guest experience.

Quality Manager - Iberostar Jamaica

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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 Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall

Address: Main Road | Little River, Rose Hall, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint James Parish > Montego Bay > Rose Hall
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Rose Hall
#1 Green Hotel in Rose Hall
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Rose Hall
#1 Spa Hotel in Rose Hall
#1 Romantic Hotel in Rose Hall
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Rose Hall
Price Range: $434 - $927 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall 5*
Number of rooms: 295
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Iberostar Grand Rose Hall Hotel Rose Hall
Iberostar Montego Bay
Iberostar Hotel Montego Bay
Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall Jamaica - Montego Bay

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