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Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa
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6,748 - 6,753 of 7,447 reviews
Reviewed November 30, 2008

I read some of the reviews and wonder if we were at the same resort.

I travelled with my sister-in-law and we stayed for 10 days from Nov 11 to 21st.

Yes there still needs to be work done and some wrinkles ironed out but that is to be expected . Who cares if there were some brown-outs for a few mins, the bathroom would flood when we showered if we didn't block the water with the rubber mat and the air conditioning could have been a little cooler. Our room was clean and the bed very comfortable. We had a nice view of the small pool in front of our balconey (swam there at night to cool off before bed.)

We were in buiding 12 which was pretty close to everything but enjoyed the long walks we took around the resort a couple of times.

The resort overall was beautiful and we had great service everywhere. We didn't eat at the Indian or Fish restaurant, but tried all the others. The only one we didn't like was the Mexican because the cheese was like melted cheese whiz.

Everyone was friendly from the guys working on the yards to the entertainment team. The main pool was so large that if you wanted things quiet you sat on one side and if you wanted music and fun you sat on the side with the entertainment shack. The swim up bar was in the middle.

The entertainment team was so much fun. Sugar is as sweet as her name, Mad Raz really is crazy, Chocolate a lot of fun and Happy Feet just that. These people start at 9:30 am and don't end until 12:00 pm with only a few hrs break in between. They try to get the guests to join in but if you don't want to they don't constantly bug and they would stop and chat with us when they weren't busy. Sugar even went off the resort and bought me some Tamarine Balls to take home to my son because they didn't have them for sale at the resort. (We tipped the bartenders and waiters often and then gave the entertainment people a small thankyou at the end of our stay, but we didn't feel they were looking for one)

We only saw one show, which was fun. Instead, we usually ate late and spent each evening listening to a different band and dancing from 9:30. The games room bar carries specialty liquor. You can get Red Stripe Beer & CC Rye etc there. Then it was to a pool to cool off before bed or to the disco for a little more dancing.

Take an insulated glass with you for your drinks. I found the rum and coke to strong so had them fill my glass with pop and then give me the rum on the side so I could add the amount I wanted. Our glasses were really big and they had no trouble filling them for us.

We did one day trip to Bob Marley's mausoleum and really enjoyed it. (I would have been just as happy to stay on the resort) They have some half decent stores on the resort for souvenir shopping and you can get the other stuff at the airport.

I would recommend this resort to anyone (can't comment on things available for young kids). Remember when you go to these resorts it's not going to be the Royal York. Go with the flow, ignore the little things and just have a great time.

ps: if you really need washcloths and it's going to ruin your vacation TAKE SOME WITH YOU. Every resort I've been at they are hard to get so just take some!

Hope you decide to go and enjoy yourselves as much as us!

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled with friends
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8  Thank jlawrie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2008

I booked this vacation using www.cheapcaribbean.com and according to the website, The Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa is a 4-star resort... THAT IS NOT TRUE AT ALL! I wish I would have taken heed to some of the reviews from TripAdvisor before I confirmed my reservations. I was told by a few people that resort was supposed to take four years to build, but it was done in two... Well it shows! There are noticeable cracks in the walls/columns throughout the property. I will say that it does have the potential to be 4 stars (or better) but right now I would be reluctant to give it even 3 stars. There are certain issues that need to be resolved, such as the mold in the Sport's Bar and in the pool and the food is not up to what I feel is 4 star standards. The menu at the restaurants is definitely not for young children. The resort itself is beautiful but the layout is not "kid friendly". It requires a lot of walking to get from the rooms to the main area and my kids were not too thrilled about that. The main pool is incredibly HUGE and it was somewhat intimidating for my nine year old who usually loves the pool. As most of the other reviews stated, the beach is very rocky (I would suggest water shoes for the children). The nightly entertainment seemed unrehearsed and thrown together. Despite the flaws, my family did manage to have a good time (thanks to some of the wonderful staff), but I will not be going back to this resort again and would not recommend it to anyone until progress has been made!

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled with family
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2  Thank alwaysthegr8est
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2008

THIS IS NOT A 5 STAR resort. Not even close.

I don't know where to begin- But here are a few things this pit has to offer. I will say from a distance, looking out from the lobby the view is beautiful.
*The bed was like sleeping on box springs.
*Offer beer in the room fridge, no opener. Called 3 times and never got one.
*Ants in our bed the first night. Went to the front desk to complain, they guy wrote the info on his hand. No one ever treated or followed up. We told our housekeeper and she sprayed.
*The makeup mirror fell off the wall.
*The tile was unfinished in the bathroom.
*The shower leaked water on the bathroom floor, so you had to adjust and stand sideways in the shower.
*The fire alarm was going off in another building, I called, they told me it was crickets!! There are plenty of loud crickets too!!
*The fire alarm went off in the restaurant, delaying opening for 40 minutes. The waitress said they were testing it. Great time for testing!!
*The spa pool was closed and being worked on. The wet sauna smelled of mildew, couldn't even go in. The dry sauna was new and hot, but still had saw dust on the floor. We decided to not book a spa treatment.
*All the other pools had tiles missing and were too cold to swim.
*The plants were dead and the sprinklers ran non stop often flooding the grounds.
* VERY lazy workers, stood around a lot staring at the tourists.
* We asked the concierge where else we could eat lunch besides the buffet. She recommended a sea food restaurant Poseiden. She also said this was the only place to get jerk chicken. This "seafood" restaurant had 7 things on the menu, non being seafood and 2 things (hamburgers & cheese burgers) they were out of. We decided to try jerk chicken, after all that is what Jamaica is famous for. We were served a crock pot type of chicken with lots of skin and bones. GROSS.
* Restaurants were often out of items. At the sushi restaurant, we ordered sea weed salad, "we are out, but have lettuce with ranch" We took 1 bite of our sushi roll and spit it out then left.

If you have already booked your trip, don't miss going into Negril and seeing Rick's. Very amazing place.

I could keep going, but I think you get it..............beyond bad!!

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank deltaDallas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2008

1. Check-in / Staff: The resort staff is incredibly unaccomodating. We booked this trip months in advance and they still couldn't get the rooms straight. We were arguing with the front desk upon checkin for about two hours. We booked a suite and junior suite adjoining. On arrival they said they did not have two adjoining rooms, and for the first night the rooms were on two different floors. We paid extra for the suite and junior suite to be adjoined, they would not refund us any money for the first night. They did not care AT ALL. They are extremely rude. We arrived on the 21st, and one person from our group arrived on the 25th, which they were supposed to just be staying in the junior suite. When he was checking in, they gave hime another room, on the floor below us. We tried explaining to the front desk that that was wrong and he was just staying in the suite, but they insisted they give us another room. That night a family walked into our junior suite! They gave that room to another family! The men hit on you and offer you drugs left and right. There is a guy at the pool, he has a blonde streak down the middle of his head. He approached me when I took my headphones off. I told him my fiancee was coming and he wouldn't appreciate me talking to him. He didn't care. He proceeded to offer me ecstacy. I declined and then he offered viagra. I told him he was making me uncomfortable and he finally left. A day later he offered to show my fiancee and I to the beach, and I told him we were okay. They just don't give up.


2. Food: The food is HORRIBLE. The buffets always have the same thing over and over and it is never fresh. Some of the food you can't even tell what it is. The food at the italian restaurant was OKAY, but the service was by far the worst service I have ever had in my entire life. The waitress was a complete [--] and kept forgetting our orders. We had to ask her three times for a glass of wine. It seemed as though if we asked for something we were bothering her. Bubba's was horrible. One of us ordered "baby back ribs"...they were deffinitely NOT baby backs. The service there was also slow. The seafood restaurant has to be the worst seafood I've eaten. They were out of some of the appetizers. One night we walked there (its a pretty far walk - all the way at the other end of the resort), to find out they were having mexican...at the seafood restaurant. There was no possible way we would have been informed of this, because there is no communication between the staff and guests. No newsletter, flyer, nothing. However, our server, Dwight, was very good and polite, unlike the rest of the staff at this resort.
The drinks are incredibly strong & the liquor was bottom shelf. The only beer they had was "real rock". They didn't even have red stripe!


3. Rooms: The rooms are bad. The beds are like sleeping on concrete, the pillows are like rocks, and the housekeeping is horrible. I called four times for new washcloths and towels, to never get them. The maid would no restock them! We actually had to go down to the pool and get towels from there to use for our showers. I opened the drawer to the night table and there was a bag of marijuana. The bars of soap were the tiniest I've ever seen, and like the towels they were never restocked. The power kept going on and off, constantly. The fire alarm in our building went off at 7 in the morning. I called to ask them why, they said it was a mistake and someone would be there in a couple minutes. They don't rush for anything - they just take their time with EVERYTHING.


4. Resort Grounds: The grounds need A LOT of work. There were a ton of jamaicans walking around pretending to work. They would sit in the grass and pick up leaves, or rake rocks - literally. I just don't think they like to work, and there is a lot of work that needs to be done. Shingles are coming off the roofs. The grass is dead. Tiles are coming off the pools. (Half the main pool was roped off for half of the week we were there and the pool near the spa was drained. The pool is not an infinity pool as it is advertised to be. The water was absolutely freezing. They never clean it either! The beaches aren't good. They're rocky. Sunset cove is probably the nicest beach, but at the other end of the resort. They don't have room service either. The resort is NOT 25 minutes from the airport like they advertise, its about an hour.


5. Spa: We got a couples massage. It was so bad! The massage room wasn't that dark, no candles, no soothing music. I don't think the massage therapists were even certified, all they did was rub your back. They charged an extra $17.00 for tax. I've gotten numerous massages and have never been charged for tax!! I only brought $120, because the massage was supposed to be $100 without tax, but ended up coming to $117, so they didn't get a tip. I'm sure the "tax" was there tip anyway.


6. Entertainment: There really is no entertainment. The shows are a complete joke. As someone stated in another review, it is the hired help that dances on stage - completely out of sync. The male dancers were just wearing jeans with no shirts, and they weren't even in shape! One of the singers were so bad, the woman sitting in front of me actually covered her ears! They can't dance, sing, nothing! Don't even waste your time going there. The disco is bad. Its jamaicans preying on drunk girls. I wouldn't waste your time there either. The "Las vegas" bar isn't even open yet. The bartenders at the pool bar are nice (Leroy and Jovian). The sports bar is boring, serving pizza thats been sitting out for hours. Thats the only food thats available after hours, and it is so disgusting! The bartender kept hitting on me, finding me on the resort twice even though I told him I have a fiancee.


I am well traveled, I'm not just comparing this resort to nothing. I can honestly say it is the worst resort I've been to, and I would never return to Jamaica. I highly suggest staying elsewhere.

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
3  Thank MAG5075
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2008

I will divide this into sections for easy commentary: First the Hotel and the grounds:

The hotel itself is really nice. It was a beautiful location and the hotel was spotless at all times. The decor is very tasteful and upscale and the staff was very polite. No trouble checking in and we got upgraded to an ocean front room for free which was really lovely. We were there over thanksgiving week and the hotel was about forty percent full (or so I heard from the staff.) For reception staff they were very efficient. No long wait, no big attitude, no problem mon.

The grounds are nice but they seem to have trouble keeping their foliage alive there. Everything in the flower beds was dead . Still the hotel has lovely architecture and the dead stuff was no big deal. The pool was huge and well kept. There was always adequate seating and plenty of towels. You will not need to get up early to claim a spot. Crowding is not a problem. There are several pools some near the rooms, one main pool with a large swim up bar and one all adult pool. All nice, all with good service. Usually hotels have entertainment staff that get the guests involved in things but this group was pretty low key and I saw kind of minimal guest participation. For an entertainment group they were pretty timid. Not rude or unpleasant just reserved and not very chatty.

If you are a beach person the beach is really mediocre. There is a nicer beach with big trees on the far side of the resort but the other beach spots are rocky. There was some nice shells if you are a sheller on the rocky beach. The beach areas are small.

The resort is really large but we didn't have any trouble getting around. This would be a problem if you were elderly or not very mobile. There are lots of stairs and long walks.


next lets talk service: Overall the service was really nice. We are really friendly people and by in large the staff was really friendly in return. The bar staff was quick and if I had any complaints there it was that they made the drinks so strong you could barely get them down. After one or two you don't notice so much (smiles) . The wait staff and our room made were really friendly and did a really good job.

The wait to get into restaurants at peak times was no more than about twenty minutes but the time inbetween courses was really long. Dinner was usually at least an hour and half event. Allow yourself time. (But you on vacation no need to rush)

Now food: There was a wide selection of food available and over all the food was really good. Most all inclusives have really bad buffet food but this place was really pretty good all arouond. The pastries at breakfast are excellent as are the breads. The eggs are pretty good and if you find the bar that has the Jamaican breakfast foods try them. They are excellent. Don't miss the breakfast porkchops covered in jamaican spices...they were delicious. Lots of the jamican foods look suspect by our norms in the states but taste great. Don't let the appearance frighten you. Be brave.

The one down side to food during the day was.....most restaurants require that you be wearing something other than beach attire. There was only one snack bar close to the beach that you could grab something to go from and nothing near the pool. The sports bar was a good location for snacks but demanding no wet suits and no tank tops really made it hard to just grab a bite mid day.

Now dinner.. The indian food was great, the jamaican food was great, the steak place.....was middle of the road .....the mexican was bad the night we had it but I heard they were moving the kitchen; so that might not be the norm. The japanese place has good sushi if you like rolls. Definitely try the geisha roll if you like spicy food.

Tours: We didnt go on any but I made friends with some of the staff. I heard the tours are not worth doing. If you do chose to try one out don't use Jamaica tours. We used them for airport transfers and they hosed us with an extra fee for taking us to our hotel and they were an hour late coming to get us when we left. If there had been a long line at customs or our ticket counter at the airport we would have missed our flight. While I don't usually mind living on Jamaican time its not good for when you really need to be some place. There are two other tour companies there pick one of those.

We usually travel to different places each vacation but if I was going to repeat one I would definitely visit this resort again.

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
9  Thank SterlingSmithJames
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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