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Sandals Dunns River

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RBW
New York
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110 posts
34 reviews
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Sandals Dunns River

My husband and I have been to the Sandals Grande St Lucia three times. We would like to try one of the Sandals in Jamaica. I have been reading the Trip Advisor reviews for Sandals Dunns River and they seem good, especially since the hotel has recently remodeled. We originally thought about Sandals Whitehouse, but we love the beach and from what I read, the sand fleas seem to be a big problem at the Whitehouse. Has anyone been to the Grande in St. Lucia and Dunns River? If not, what is the opinion of Dunns River, or any other adult all inclusive that you would recommend? I'm looking forward to some great opinions!

near Chicago
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250 posts
1 review
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1. Re: Sandals Dunns River

I haven't been to Grande St. Lucian, but I have been to SDR and SW.

Having done a little research on Grande St. Lucian, I can tell you what I think the differences are.

At SDR, the rooms are in buildings that are high rise, hotel type buildings. Although, the only time you get this hotel feeling is when you are going to your room. Once in your room, the rooms are very Caribbean. I just returned from SDR a few days ago and the rooms, since the remodeling, are great.

Another difference is that SDR is a very small resort with a very short beach.

I thought SDR was a lovely resort and even though the beach is short, the resort runs along the beach. This means that while you are in the pools or at some of the restaurnats and bars, you are at the ocean. I love resorts that have that kind of feeling.

I have been to SW, also. The first time shortly after it opened. The sand fleas were a huge problem. We had to wear spray to repel bugs at all times, day and night. Even with that spray, people were getting bitten by sand fleas.

We returned to SW last December. I did not wear bug spray at any time and between my husband and me, we got two bites. I know that the resort has been doing a lot of spraying to control this sand flea problem and it seems to me that it has worked.

Of these two resorts, my favorite was SW because of the long beach. Which of these two you would like depends upon what you want for a vacation.

RBW
New York
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110 posts
34 reviews
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2. Re: Sandals Dunns River

Thanks for your answer, SumGolf2. If the Whitehouse is taking care of the sand flea problem, I would rather stay at the hotel with the bigger beach. I will keep following the forum and the hotel reports, and hope that the sand flea problem is under control. I can't imagine Sandals building such an expensive hotel and having it ruined because of bugs.

marlton, nj
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99 posts
34 reviews
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3. Re: Sandals Dunns River

Nevery been to SDR.. but have a trip coming up to there in mid-april...We have been to SW just after it opened...We loved it..there were a few minor problems (mostly bugs but they have been working for a year on that problem and i hear it has gotten better)the other problems were mostly due to the fact that it just opened. the other thing is this resort is very wide open. We had a room in the furthest building away from the main area..it was ok if you dont like walking a distance to get to things..secondly if you dont like getting wet going to or from your room if you want to get something to eat and it happens to be raining..otherwise i think i would definately return especially since its been open a while. Cant wait to see how small SDR really is, but it doesnt matter, just as long as we are on vacation, sun, beach, alcohol. Good luck

new jersey
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74 posts
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4. Re: Sandals Dunns River

RBW...

We were just @ SDR a few weeks ago and had a great time. With the exception of the food everything was delightful. Good drink service, nice pools, clean beach--and here is the great part-there were four of us and we never had any issue getting pool floats, bar space, hammocks, or beach/pool chairs---keep in mind we were also told the resort was sold out! One of the things we appreciated the most was there is plenty of space for the amount of guests at the resort.

True, the beach is not the biggest but it is certainly large enough to accomodate the guests of the hotel. It is also private-so you are not constantly bombarded by people selling stuff. Add to that the fact that the pool areas(2 pools) run close & parallel to the beach and you've got a huge area to sun your self in. And-mind you-we didn't notice any sand fleas.

In regards to room selection-we booked the cheapest and wound up in one of the two low rise, exterior corridor buildings. We found that great because it was less than a 50 yard walk to the ocean. We paid $1750 per couple for 7 days and thought we absolutely got great value for the money.

As mentioned the only drawback was the food quality. For the life of me I can't see how Sandals gets away with calling it gourmet-it wasn't even close. The basic stuff was o/k(breakfast & lunch), and you could have as much as you want...but don't expect any amazing dinners.

SHEBOYGAN WIS
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123 posts
12 reviews
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5. Re: Sandals Dunns River

I have stayed at Grande and SDR.In my eyes nothing was like the Grande. THe island alone is breath taking. The food is much better in St Lucia, expecially the Chocolate and Seafood Buffet, no lobster at there buffet.Also I have not found the great Sandals Chocolate at SDR like at the Grande. But the renovations at the SDR were beautiful and the people were very friendly. WE went to Jamaica to try a different Sandals, we got a deal for only 1,200 a person for 7 days. FOr the price it was a great trip. SDR was very nice trip and we were glad we tried a different Sandals. But our hearts are still in St Lucia I can see why you were there 3 times. Jamaica's island is to be desired. Not much to look at.

RBW
New York
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110 posts
34 reviews
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6. Re: Sandals Dunns River

It's amazing that you are all paying such low prices to stay at Dunn's River. My friend is going in December and she is also only paying about $1500. I am thinking of going in January and the price is about $3500 for the third level room. What a price difference! There is a luxury condominium being built next to the Grande St. Lucian, and with things in St. Lucia on "island time", I definitely don't want to take a chance with the construction noise. I hope to make the right decision soon!

Cape Cod, MA
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107 posts
5 reviews
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7. Re: Sandals Dunns River

Hi there.. I think I can help.

We have been to Sandals St.Lucia Grande, and Sandals Dunns River. (Along with Sandals Negirl, Beaches Negril, Sandals Bahamas, and Sandals Antigua.)

Sandals Dunns River was our favorite until we experienced Sandals Grande St.Lucia. (Stayed at Dunns River before the remodel)

The resorts are the same when it comes to:

Great restaurants, bars have drink signs on them, updated. You can go over to their sister Sandals resorts. I'm sure I'm missing alot but that is what comes to mind.

They are different: Rooms in Grande are all pretty much the same, not at Dunns River. It is ALOT more lively than at the Grande, more upbeat. If you golf, lessons are free Mon-Fri.

If you want to email me personally I'd be happy to give you any specifics including what to expect with different room categories.

email= zmail@adelphia.net

I think it is a beautiful property, fabulous layout (similar to Grande, maybe even better)

If we were to go to back to the same resorts it would be in this order:

Grande, St.Lucia or Dunns River (which ever had the bigger discount including air)

Sandals Negril, Sandals Bahamas, Beaches Negril, and would never return to Sandals Antigua.

Why I would choose Dunns river over Whitehouse is the location. Whitehouse seems so far away from everything. We like to maybe to a good tour, shop, and visit a sister Sandals Resort. You can climb the Dunns River, that was alot of fun, and inexpensive.

Best of luck, email if I can help!

Watertown, CT
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15 posts
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8. Re: Sandals Dunns River

If you like the beach and clear water ST.Lucia isn't the place to go. I wwould rather be on the beach at Dunn's river and save money. The grand is too crowded, the Halycon is too small and at the golf the water is too crazy mostly red flagged with rip current.

Saint Charles...
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174 posts
2 reviews
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9. Re: Sandals Dunns River

We have been to SDR five times and love it. Yes, the beach is not huge, but definitely big enough. It is a large property, but only has 250 rooms. It never feels crowded. I thought it was beautiful before the renovations but it is even better now.

RBW
New York
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110 posts
34 reviews
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10. Re: Sandals Dunns River

It seems like we will be trying Sandals Dunns River.Although I would love to return to the Grande in St. Lucia, there is a luxury condo being built right next door to the hotel. The land for the condo was already cleared in January, so I imagine the construction and the noise will start soon. With everything on "island time", who knows how long it will take to be built? As for the sand fleas at the Whitehouse, I actually found a message board specifically about the fleas! Who needs to worry about that on vacation? Thanks to everyone for your advice!