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“Not So Grand Palladium”

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Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Lucea
Certificate of Excellence
Tavistock, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Not So Grand Palladium”
Reviewed February 27, 2009

There were some good & bad points to this hotel. First of all the brochure states the beds are king or queen, but were sadly given double beds (hard as a rock). When we arrived and the bellhop brought us to the room and did a survey of the room, we also found no remote for the TV and the Bar Fridge was totally bare. Around the 2-3 day the ceiling in our bathroom (room 1612) started leaking due to the room above - when ever they had a shower. The restaurants were farely decent - good variety but the buffet had a problem with the food not being hot enough. There were not enough staff as far as maintenance & cleaning. We had to request our room be cleaned at least 3 times while there for 7 days and yet our friends who were right next door never had a problem. The pools were clean but a lot of the tiles were coming off & not being replaced from what we could see. There wasn't one whirl pool in any of the pools that was working properly (barely a wave let alone a pressure point). There were lots of lounge chairs around the pool. The main swim up bar was very slow to serve the customers -- waiting a long time (almost 10-15 minutes once and it wasn't even that busy?) We did find a smaller adult pool with the nicest bar tender (Gavin) which we frequented daily once we found him. I do recommend if you go to Jamaica - you must take the Jeep Safari trip to the rainforest and orange groves - Very interesting and eye opening. You will not find long stretches of beach at this resort - but if it's a natural coast line you are looking for then this area is for you. The weather was good and very relaxing but the hotel needs work. (if the management doesn't change I don't want to see this place in 2-3 years)

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Chrisser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Washington, DC
Level Contributor
19 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2009

Rooms were nice.
Shows are designed poorly, leading to wet floors.
Horribly understaffed, rooms not ready until 8:30pm.
Food, outside of the Indian restaurant, ranges from acceptable to barely edible. Vegetarians beware.
Hardly any beach.
Horrible liquor selection, and a beer called Real Rock that is undrinkable. The bar by the beach ran out of rum in the middle of the day.
Breakfast after about 8:30 is a disaster.
Staff generally very friendly.
Due to staffing problems, waits for dinner in the 1-2 hour range.
I would not come back; much better values out there.

More details:
The Grand Palladium & the Lady Hamilton – two sides of the same resort. The Lady Hamilton side is further from the water sports area, which has only real beach on the property. Even though they use two names, it's one resort – all the buildings and rooms are the same.

The biggest problem this resort had was lack of staff. We arrived right around the stated check in time, and then had to wait about 3 hours for our rooms. Friends arrived about 5:30pm and had to wait until 8:30 to get their room. The few people at the front desk were harried, and although I asked several times to speak with someone in charge, no one was available, to the point where although the desk staff was constantly paging for a supervisor on their radios, not a single one ever answered.

Although they were horribly understaffed, the staff was always friendly and willing to do what they could given the circumstances.

The room was new and beautiful, although not put together quite right. The comments on the showers leaking are because there is a 2 inch gap at the bottom of the door, and the shower head points directly at the door. So water hitting the door runs out into the room. The bed was fine, the balcony was nice.

The grounds are kept up well; the pool was cleaned early every morning.

Breakfast was swamped our first morning. Lines were terrible and coffee nowhere to be found. For a less stressful experience, go early. The food was edible.

Middle of the day bar food is terrible. Chicken wings, hot dogs, not much else. The restaurants are open for lunch; we never made it for a sit down lunch.

For dinner, the restaurants are so understaffed that they sit 60% empty and yet there is an hour or more wait. This leads to a lot of unhappy patrons and some confrontations as people do not understand why they have to wait an hour when they can see most of the tables are empty.

The seafood restaurant was terrible; the rest, with the exception of the Indian, were passable. The Indian was, by far, the best one there. The Italian one was second best, although the desserts are all wrong; cannelloni filled with strawberry cream cheese? Only here.

If you are a vegetarian, you'll have a hard time here. If you are a vegan, don't even bother.

The beer is Real Rock (Red Stripe appears to only be available at a single bar, the one above the Indian restaurant) which is undrinkable. The liquors are all no-names (Irish Mist whiskey anyone?) and they don't have a good selection. In fact, it's the worst liqueur selection I have ever experienced. College dorms have a better stock than the Palladium.

They have a lot of outdoor seating, which in the evening breeze is quite nice with an amazing view.

There is not a lot of beach – what little there is appears to be artificial. The only real choice is over by the seafood restaurant, which is also where the kayaks and catamarans are. Provided it is not too windy and you get one before 3:30pm.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank DCDingo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Haven
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2009

We stayed at Grand Palladium - Lady Hamilton from Feb 16 - Feb 23, had a terrific time. After reading some of the earlier reviews I was concerned, we had already book the vacation. While there are some areas that need repair and maintenance, the pool tiles keep coming up, the staff seems to be working hard to make repairs and keep the grounds in shape. The resturant choices are varied, the food was very good. We had a long wait to get into the steak house, but all the others were easy to access and the service was great! The beaches were well maintained and there are plenty of bars available so you won't go thirsty for long. We did have one surly bar tender at the adult pool, he was having a bad day and thought he could tell the customers what they could and could not have in their drinks but the next day he was more pleasent and the rest of the staff went out of their way. Even the grounds and maintence people were friendly and helpful, we had several of them go out of their way to resolve a question or get us something extra. Other than the one bar-tender, we had one other issue during check-in. They had us reserved on the Grand Palladium-Jamacian side of the resort when our reservation (and request) was for the Lady Hamilton side. I thought this was going be an issue but the check in person resolved it for us in less than 10 minutes. Overall this is a great resort, helpful staff with great attitudes and a beautiful facility. Check in and out went smoothly, our room was well maintained and everything worked!! We have been to any number of resorts in the Caribbean over the years and at most of them the plumbing is marginal and very slow. I was amazed at how well the bath - shower and toilet work at Grand Palladium. The air conditioner worked well and, with the slider closed the room was quiet. As others have said, the pools were a little cold, but the ocean was great and the weather can't be beat! If we go back to Jamaica we would certianly book at the Greand Palladium again.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank WillyWorker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
broken arrow,ok
1 review
Reviewed February 26, 2009

Over priced for the quality of service. Always out of your everyday staples. Towels,coffee cups(at a coffee bar at that) One morning for breakfast I did see one of the waitress take 2 cups off a dirty service tray to give to a couple. Never enough staff to acomadate the travlers. You'd leavetips in your room with a note of request(towels bottled water)the money wold be gone but you never received your reqeust you asked for.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank oeller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed February 25, 2009

Stayed @ Grand Palladium 2/16 – 2/23 via Apple Vacations

After reading many of the reviews prior to our trip, I was definitely anxious after booking this resort. However, we take several trips a year & when I was booking this hotel; I was attracted to it by the price, aesthetics and proximity to Montego Bay.

Flight into Mo Bay was fine, albeit a bit crowded on the plane, but fine. The gentleman at Customs gave me an extremely difficult time with my passport because it had some apparent water damage (which I had never noticed) – almost didn’t let me into the country…a bit scary. Bus ride to resort wasn’t too bad, approximately a 45 minute ride. It would have been another 45 min had we booked in Negril.

Check in – Although Sheldon was extremely courteous, I was disappointed with how long it took us to finally get into our room. My husband was not feeling well and really needed to lie down. After several returns to see if our room was ready and close to 5 pm I was starting to get irritated. The lady once again told me that our room was not ready, but was in the final stages of being ready. I said that they had been telling me for the past several hours & this was getting ridiculous. Magically, at that instance, our room was ready.

Accommodations – were fine. We were in villa 15, 2nd floor and had a great view of the ocean. The room was tidy and cleaned every day. We did notice that there were zillions of teeny tiny bugs between the glass & tops of furniture. We did not notice them in our bed or bathroom though. The bed was hard and we could feel the springs, but it didn’t ruin our trip. Had no bathroom problems whatsoever. We did not have bathrobes or slippers. AC was not the greatest, but we left a room key in the slot while we were out. The fridge also wasn’t the coldest, but it didn’t ruin our trip.

Beaches – we quite enjoyed all the different little beaches. If you’re looking for long strolls on the beach & that is extremely important to you, you may want to look elsewhere. However, if you do that then you’ll have to deal with peddlers on the beaches & a longer drive from the airport. Sunset cove does have a beautiful sunset. We enjoyed hanging out there and taking out the sailboats and kayaks free of charge.

Restaurants – we loved the food here. We’ve been to Mexico several times and enjoyed the food here much better. I recommend the Ribeye @ Bubbas, nachos & shrimp fajita @ Mexican, Kabob & butter chicken @ the Indian. I agree that you need to go early, if you don’t want to wait. It’s not top-shelf liquor (except in Miss Lou’s), but again, we knew that going into it. I highly recommend bringing your coffee mug with you (we forgot ours); the plastic cups that they use are about 8-10 oz.

Grounds – are absolutely beautiful and spread out. We’re in our 30’s and did not mind the walk one bit. However, if you have trouble getting around you may want to book a smaller resort. We never waited for the taxis. All employees were courteous & friendly. My favorite was Genise, the maid at Sunset cove. I truly enjoyed all my talks with her!

Spa – We had a couples massage & that was wonderful. Charlton gave me a fabulous massage and my hubby joked that he was going to leave me in Jamaica & return with his masseuse. I do wish that the Jacuzzi was “hot”, but again, it wasn’t a deal breaker.

Tipping – we did tip, but not sure if it would have made a difference had we not tipped. There were several people who did not tip.

Pool – Only hung out at the main pool 1 day & thoroughly enjoyed Leroy’s mojitos & service & the company at the bar. Sure, there are some missing tiles & apparently a girl sliced her foot open at the spa, but again, not a deal breaker.

Tours – Zipline Adventures was fun. Our guides were fun; they did seem to really enjoy hanging with the pot-smokers. It did make my hubby a bit nervous, but we never felt unsafe.

Shopping trip to Negril – if I had to do it over again, we’d hire our own driver. I did not like being on someone else’s timeline. If you do this tour, make your souvenir-type purchases at the Time Square shopping, the 2nd stop is only one store. The craft market is fine, but they try everything to get your attention. By the time we got to Rick’s café, we only had 45 mins and it wasn’t enough time to get a meal.

We are pretty easy-going people and did not let the small irritations get under our skin, but we talked with several people who seemed to have horrible luck from shower flooding, bathroom Jacuzzi smoking, to a fire, to room keys not working, to rude employees and on and on. Several reviewers all say that “your vacation is what you make it” and several of the people that we met & hung out with were of the same mindset. If you have further questions or want more information, feel free to send me a message and I’ll tell you what I can and as honestly as possible.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
16 Thank Runnermom24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vancouver bc
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2009

We stayed for a week vacation along with 2 other couples from Feb 14th -21. The weather was fantastic. Check in took only 15 minutes! The staff was couteous and prompt. The rum first thing was an added bonus and packed a punch!!! They do not dilute the liquor! We packed all our swim wear on our carry on so that it made the transition easy upon arrival. Our room was ready by 12 noon. Our room was georgeous!
We had a lovely corner room on the second floor overlooking sunset cove, and of course the sunset each night. Building 34 was the perfect spot to be in terms of walking to the other beaches, restaurants, spa, steam room, and of course close to our other 2 couples staying in building 33. We couldn't have been happier with our location and room view...it was amazing! The corner suites offer the side window which provided a cross breeze. ( The airconditioning was not working but the ceiling fan kept the air moving and on the second floor, you leave your terrace doors open all day all night with no problem!).
The 7 restaurants offered a great variety of choices and if you play your cards right and have dinner around 6:30 to 7:00 you need only wait 15-30 minutes for a table for 6. There were no resevations available, but we found we were able to had a lovely dinner at each of the 7 restaurants. The breakfast buffet Negril/mobay was wonderful especially the made to order omlette and juice bar. My favorite being the celery/parsley juice! Celine prepared my omlette most mornings and getting to know her was a pleasure. She loved to sing a few bars of Bob Marley's " I wanna love you everyday and everynight" as she happily flipped my omlette.Lunch time was fun to have jerk chicken over at the sunset cove, or have a buffet at the infinity restaurant. We also had a lunch at the Indian restaurant which opens at 1 pm each day. This was my personal favorite evening eatery.
Donna Lee was our housekeeper for the week. Our room was made up before we returned from our breakfast which was around 10 am. Everything was meticulous. We left a nice tip under our pillow each day and we knew it was appreciated. Each night we would arrive back to find yet another nice touch, "turn down service" with new towels and bathmat for the evening.Always a lovely towel shaped bird and petals scattered across the bed.We did find the beds and pillows hard, but if you take the extra blanket from the closet (get another from housekeeping) and fold it into 4. Lay it across the hip and shoulder level under the bottom sheet, it 'll make a world of difference. The decorative long bolster makes for an great pillow using two pillow cases end to end. Donna Lee was smart enough to leave two extra fresh cases on our bed each night! Be sure to pack a pair of slippers too, the marble floors are bad for your legs!The variety of beaches made for a perfect change of scenery each day. It was neat to wander to each during the day and spend a couple hours at each. Snorkling at sunset cove was beautiful. We could start at one cove and snorkle into the next ( Coral beach).
Be sure to pack your own fins, they don't provide them at the cove. I needed some medical attention on the beach on our last day, within minutes a young man, Duane, with a firstaid bag came and attended to my foot. He was courteous and informative. And it was a good experience!
A super vacation was had by all.
I would recommend to stay at this Grand Hotel!

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Denise P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
uk
Level Contributor
86 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2009

I must say I was worried after reading so many negative reviews. What would I find?
A hotel full of miserable staff?
Missing tiles cutting my feet to bits?
Cockroaches? Mice?
Flooded rooms? Sewage smelling rooms?
Pool hand rails falling to bits and plunging me into an icy pool?
Long long walks to get anywhere?
Bad food?
Bad service?
Beds like stone?
My oh my would you have to have had bad luck to experience that lot.
Firstly I'd like to give a mention to Clives Transportation from the airport to hotel and back. First rate. We had a huge delay but there he was waiting as planned and such a great informative guy.
Next the hotel. Yes one or two points can be valid depending upon your stay. We may have been lucky because we experienced none of them, however what I did find were the nicest, friendliest, most cheerful staff I have ever come across in my life. That goes for everyone from front desk to gardeners etc. I cannot fault them in any way. We stayed at almost the furthest end away from the facilities and it took a staggering 6mins stroll to reach the pool etc. Hardly a hike! Yes sometimes the food was not the hottest, but there was always something good somewhere, and after eating 3 meals per day for a few days the odd meal not so good here and there didn't matter. The beds were firm, but I managed to sleep very well, and I'm used to soft soft soft back home! The pool temperature was fine even on a windy day. The beaches, while not the best were certainly not the worst either. Now one huge huge plus for me is the amount of sunbeds and shade available. It was sheer bliss not to have to get up at 5am to secure a shady spot and sunbed unlike Mexico this time last year or even having to pay extra to reserve sunbeds the day before you needed them after already paying $500 per room per night like Hawaii last Summer! That alone made me relax and put me in a good mood.
So go determined to have a good time, relax a bit, and be polite yourself, and you will enjoy. See only the bad, moan at the staff, and you will be miserable. Your choice.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank carolynu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa

Property: Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa
Address: The Point, Lucea, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Location: Caribbean > Jamaica > Hanover Parish > Lucea
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Lucea
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 544
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Also Known As:
Grand Palladium Jamaica Hotel Lucea
Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort And Spa
Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort & Spa Lucea

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