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“Wonderful stay at Whitehouse 01/13/07 - 01/19/07”

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Sandals South Coast
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in White House
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 29 January 2007

Review:
We had a wonderful time at Whitehouse. The grounds are simply beautiful. I give our trip an “A+” rating. It really was a magical week, and a perfect way for us to celebrate our tenth anniversary.


Airport Arrival:
We had no trouble getting through immigration and customs. It all moved very quickly and we were then on our way to the lounge. Arriving at the Sandals lounge was just what we needed after a crazy day of travel. The lounge was nice and cool, full of very comfortable couches, and nice cold drinks. There were no snacks to speak of by the time we got there (a lone piece of cantaloupe, I believe), but we were just happy to have a nice, comfortable, and cool place to rest.


Transport:
We were taken out to the bus probably a little sooner than necessary. It was just us and one other couple, and we sat on the bus probably 10-15 minutes before the other 3 couples arrived. As soon as they were on board, we took off. It was right at 5:00 when we left, and it was lightly raining. The driver was very friendly and chatted quite a bit during the drive. We were prepared for the road to be awful, and I think that helped. It didn’t seem quite as bad as we had imagined. We didn’t make any pit stops, and got to resort around 6:30.


Resort Arrival:
The ladies went inside to sit down and were given cool cloths. We handed in our vouchers. As soon as my husband came inside, we were whisked away to the concierge for check-in. We were offered drinks as soon as we were inside. O’Neil checked us in, and showed us to our room. He was very courteous and helpful. Our bags arrived to our room very shortly after we were inside.


Room:
We were upgraded to “The Best Room In the House.” We declined the butler service, but enjoyed the other perks of the room. We did not come prepared to tip a butler or else we would have loved to have had this extra pampering. The room was lovely, with a nice large living area. We really enjoyed this as we had brought a few movies with us. At night we would crash on the couch and watch a movie in the living room. We really enjoyed the room service, too. We used that many times during our stay. We were in the Dutch Village and had a spectacular view. The shower was huge, and got nice and hot. The bathroom was a very nice size. I have read in the past that some people said the ceiling fans were worthless. We quite enjoyed our fan. One thing I will mention is that although there is a switch on the wall to control the fan, the actual fan was turned down to low. So my husband had to pull the pull chain to put it into high mode and then we could control the speed of the fan from the wall. So if your fan goes too slowly, just make sure it is on high on the actual fan. Also I have read that you had to hold the on button the whole time for the hair dryer. When I first switched it on, the on button did pop right back out. But then I toggled back and forth between the on and off buttons a few times and then hit the ON button quite forcefully. Then it worked perfectly without having to hold it down. So don’t give up on the dryers, you might just have to work with the buttons a little bit. We paid to use the internet service. My husband brought his laptop and own cables for connection. We got on right away without any issues. It worked great for us during our entire stay. The room really was wonderful. We greatly enjoyed the size and the marvelous view.


Housekeeping:
Our room was immaculate upon arrival. It was cleaned each morning while we were out. One morning my husband was not feeling well and so we put the do not disturb sign up. Later that afternoon they called to see if there would be a convenient time for them to come and straighten the room. I thought that was above and beyond. We had turned down the service during their normal cleaning time and didn’t expect them to come back later. They asked us when we were planning to be out for dinner, and they came during that time.

Turndown service each night was very nice. Especially if we had taken an afternoon nap, it was nice to get into a fresh bed at night. They changed out towels and such if that was needed.


Concierge service:
I mentioned O’Neil above, but I wanted to say again how nice he was. As soon as we arrived to the Suite Concierge for check in, he got drinks for us and quickly went through the check in process. He told us we had been upgraded and went over all of those details. He congratulated us on our anniversary and told us to be sure and let him know if we needed anything.

We went back the next day, and O’Neil remembered us by name. We told him which reservations we wanted, he picked up the phone right away, made our reservations without having to ask us for our names or room number.

When our mini-fridge was restocked, I asked for more of specific things (cranberry juice, Sprite, Coke). These were left in good supply for us.

We were at Whitehouse to celebrate our ten-year anniversary. One evening we were surprised when a cake was delivered to our room. It said Happy Anniversary on top and there was a nice card for the concierge staff.

Lancelot, the concierge manager (I believe), called our room to check on us and make sure everything was going well. He wanted to see if there was anything else that they could be doing for us. It was a nice call. The day we were checking out, he ran into us in the Suite Concierge office and he introduced himself. When he heard our names, he remembered us and that he had spoken to my husband.

Everyone we dealt with through the concierge was very personable and friendly.


Food:
Overall, I would say that the food is very good. Our first night we ate at Bayside, and I would say that meal was adequate. The food seemed to have been sitting for a while and was not hot and just did not seem freshly prepared. I had the coconut shrimp appetizer, and it had a rubbery texture. Other than that, there isn’t really anything I have to complain about.

We ate breakfast at the Bayside buffet twice and at Eleanor’s twice. One morning we just grabbed some pastries from the café. The buffet breakfast was very nice. Lots of choices, a nice omelet station, fresh juice being made right then. The a la carte dining at Eleanor’s gave you a nice variety and the food was very well prepared.

We always enjoyed our lunches, too. We ate at Arizona’s, the Bayside buffet, and at Bluefield’s. I have to say that I really loved Bluefield’s. The view is amazing, and there was always a nice, gentle breeze coming right off the ocean. I had a patty each time we ate there, and always enjoyed those very much.

We ate dinner at each of the restaurants. Eleanor’s, Jasmine’s, and Giuseppe’s were all very good. My husband’s favorite was Eleanor’s, and he really enjoyed the steak there. My favorite was probably Giuseppe’s as I really liked the antipasto bar. The service was really excellent. At Jasmine’s our server called us by name throughout the entire meal. She especially impressed me. But all of the servers were always very courteous and prompt.

I have read mixed reviews of the beach barbecue, but I have to say that we really, really enjoyed ourselves. We started off with some of the freshly cut-open coconuts. They pour out just a bit of the juice and then mix with rum and other yummy stuff. The food was all very good. The suckling pig was delicious. All of the food there was fresh and very well prepared.

We enjoyed all of the drinks. Favorites were the Hummingbird and Jamaican Smile. We took our Bubba Kegs with us during the day and I especially liked having a big Hummingbird to sip on by the pool. The martini bar is very nice and we enjoyed a few evening drinks in there.

We attended the late-night chocolate buffet, and it was very good. The chef did such a nice job setting everything up, and the presentation really was beautiful. He was working until the very last minute getting everything set up, and I did feel badly for him as he kept apologizing that it wasn’t ready right at the exact minute it was supposed to open. But you could tell he was working very hard and trying to have everything be just right. The chocolate was all very, very good. Extremely rich and delicious.


Photographers:
I thought the photographers were very nice and not at all intrusive. We did the sunset pictures on our last evening. Remember, you can ask for the pictures on CD! That way they are only $5 per picture, plus $5 for the CD. I was happy with the pictures. I wouldn’t say I was thrilled, but I was happy. The pictures were always staged and framed very nicely, but a number of the sunset pictures were very blurry. I know those are harder shots to take technically, but I was still a bit sad. We were able to get some very nice ones though. We also purchased images of us kayaking and from other adventures during the week. They are pictures that I could not have otherwise captured, and I think it is a great service to provide.


Water Sports:
We snorkeled, sailed on a Hobie Cat, took a spin on a water tricycle, went kayaking, and went on a glass bottom boat tour.

We had a nice time snorkeling. We do not have a lot to compare this to, as this was only our second time to ever snorkel. The water was cloudy, and they said that some days it is better than others. And swimming from the boat to the reef, we were stung by tiny jellyfish. In spite of that, we had fun. We had planned to go another day but were unable to do so because of an issue with my husband’s contacts. Otherwise we probably would have gone at least one or two more times.

The water was also very cloudy on the day we went on the glass bottom boat tour, but he took us out quite far and worked to find something for us to see. We did get to see a lot of sea life and also just had a fun time on the boat. Kagian and Cleveland were the crew for the snorkel/glass bottom boat outings. They were very courteous, informative and funny too. We had a great time with them.

I was skeptical about going on the water tricycle as I had read from so many that it is very hard to do. We decided to do it anyhow, and I was glad we did. It is just like a paddleboat. You do have to work at it, but it wasn’t awkward or overly difficult in my opinion. It was fun, and I was glad we went out.

The Hobie Cat was great, and I really enjoyed that a lot. Kayaking was fun, but we sure had a hard time going straight! We got a lot of good laughs.


Bugs:
We came prepared to defend ourselves against bugs, but never had to use any spray. I got two, or maybe three bites, but nothing at all that warranted needing to wear spray in our opinion.


Spa Services:
I had a West Indian Massage, and enjoyed every second. Every staff member I came in contact with at the spa was so kind and gracious. The massage was very well done, and I spoke with my therapist beforehand, letting her know the kind of pressure I wanted. She checked on me several times throughout to make sure the amount of pressure was to my liking. Everything was quite lovely and the checkout was very simple.


Checkout/Departure:
We were very sad to leave, but the checkout process was very fast. We looked over our room charges, and they were all correct. After eating lunch, we waited in the lobby for our bus. A short time later we were loaded up and on our way. The ride back was a bit bumpier than the ride out. I think the driver you get can really make a difference. We made it to the airport in plenty of time.


Travel Agent:
We have never used a travel agent before. We but contacted Amy with Dream Makers Vacation Services. She is EXCELLENT. She always responded promptly, answered all of our questions, gave us helpful information about traveling, and basically held our hands through everything! And then the night before we were to leave, our flight was cancelled due to a forecasted ice storm in Dallas. I was in panic mode. She helped calm me down and really helped guide us as to what we needed to do. It was so late on a Friday night, I didn’t want to call her. But as my husband was on the phone making calls to the airline, I emailed her. Sure enough, she got right back to me and helped relieve my fears and told us what all we needed to do. I look forward to working with Amy in the future. She really is amazing. And I honestly think she is the sole reason we were given such a wonderful upgrade. She had emailed a few days before we left telling them we were celebrating an anniversary and asked them to upgrade us if at all possible.

Stayed: January 2007
29  Thank Brad&Carrie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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6,497 - 6,503 of 7,021 reviews

Reviewed 26 January 2007

Whitehouse is definitely a nice resort. The complaints about the drive there/back are overstated - it's not that bad. Only big minus is the food is underwhelming - very little seafood, small portions and simply bland. Not up to standard or the price.

I've always been a big Sandals fan. Stayed at three other properties and really liked the company, but this trip was very painful thanks to the following:
- I selected air and hotel on sandals.com, and was charged for the whole trip even though no air was available
- I called to straighten it out and was told it would be taken care of
- I called back and they cut me off
- I called again (again starting from scratch since they clearly do not note anything in customer records) and was told zero had been done despite what I was told
- had to escalate the issue to a help desk, which found alternatives, so I book X that I wanted and paid them, but had to settle for Y
- was told I would be sent a confirmation, air seats were being requested and a refund due was being processed
- also told that they would do nothing for wasting half of my day sorting this out
- never received confirmation - had to call again
- no seat request was put through - had to make additional call to airline
- no refund was processed - had to contact them twice more

This is the service level of an Ultra Inclusive? I will go back to Jamaica, but it won't be with Sandals.

  • Stayed: January 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
5  Thank traveler30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 January 2007

My husband and I chose Sandals Whitehouse Jamaica based on the many good reviews and the fact that none of the things in the bad reviews pertained to our needs anyway. The fact that it was secluded only meant more privacy for our honeymoon. The fact that all of the tours were a long bus ride away didn’t matter because we intended to spend our time enjoying each others company and the food and drink on the resort. Even the long bus ride didn’t bother us because it meant that we could see Jamaica instead of just the resort.

THE PLANE RIDE:

We booked through sunquest vacations and were on a skyservice plane. Tight. My last few flights have been international and I have gotten used to a certain amount of space when flying so that was a bit difficult. There were two movies shown which was wonderful because it helped pass the time. Meals were included in the price as were non-alcoholic drinks.

ARRIVAL

Smooth. Fast. While walking through to where the buses were we passes a Sunquest agent who gave us a slip for a bus. It looked odd but I took it. We then rounded the corner and spotted the Sandals bar and realized that that was where we should be. After a few complimentary cups of beer we were called to our bus.

THE BUS RIDE

I know I know. It’s long. An hour and a half no kidding. It was a beautiful hour and a half though. Yes there are potholes but our driver slowed down to go over or around all of them. It was a lovely trip and I have no complaints about it at all.

ARRIVAL AT THE RESORT

A crew of Sandals employees who offered bottled water and wet towels welcomed us. I have to say that I appreciated that little extra and it was a great way to start our stay. From there we were seated in the lobby and given champagne for a relaxing check-in. We had paid for a basic room in the French section and were upgraded to a corner room one the bottom floor of the Dutch section. Not a huge upgrade but nice nonetheless.

TIPPING

Not accepted. The staff wore pins with sayings on them like “we work for excellence, not tips”. We didn’t know that of course and attempted to tip the wonderful gentleman who carried our bags to our room. He insisted that it was not policy and off he went. It was so nice to be at a resort where you were treated special no matter what. When we were in the DR you could really see the difference in service depending on whether you tipped or not.

THE STAFF

The staff was helpful and friendly. They were definitely trained that a Sandals resort was meant to be a friendly welcoming place because you could not pass an employee without being greeted. “Good morning!” “Hello, how is your stay so far?” “Good evening, how was your day?” I found it so pleasant after coming from Toronto, the city that doesn’t speak to each other.

THE ROOM

I think that the corner rooms are a bit bigger but I am not sure. I know that I loved the room. The four poster bed was HUGE and the television was right in front of it in the armoire. The couch and living area went unused apart from my laying clothes on it but it was nice to have such a big room. I loved the fact that all of the rooms face the ocean. What an amazing selling point and brilliant idea. There is a small table and two chairs right outside the sliding door so that you can sit and have a drink and watch the sunset. The mini fridge did not have any alcoholic beverages but there was plenty of juice, pop and water. The television didn’t seem to work or have all of the channels but we discovered at the end of our stay that you need to turn on the DVD player to get all of the channels. There is a safe that you enter your own code into so that you can keep all of your belongings safe. I have to say that I felt like I could have left everything lying out in the room and it would have been just as safe. The bathroom had a tub with decent water pressure. We were given a little bag of supplies our first day in which came in very handy when I realized that I accidentally packed two conditioners and no shampoo. There was also aloe gel that was awesome when my husband got a nasty sunburn and I used up all that I brought. There is daily maid service and also a nightly turndown service. They leave a nightly newsletter as well to let you know what is happening the next day.


THE WALK TO THE RESTAURANTS

This deserves a section of it’s own because I read so many complaints about it. If you stay at this resort you should expect to spend about three-four minutes walking from your room to the restaurants…. Not the ten minutes that some people seem to think. Many people wrote this as a negative but I cannot for the life of me see why. It was a gorgeous stunning resort and I never got tired of seeing the flowers and palms. There was a bridge to walk over and two little thatched roofed bench swings to rest on if you got exhausted en route. I loved being on a resort that actually had grounds to walk around. In the DR we were at a large resort that required a lot of walking but the grounds were no where near as nice. I will admit to getting lazy about halfway through our stay and wearing my bathing suit under my breakfast clothes so that I could go lay on a floaty in the pool instead of walking back to the room to change.

THE RESTAURANTS

Bring nice clothes. I didn’t bring enough eveningwear type outfits and seriously regretted it. People dressed as if they were going to a fancy restaurant every night-because they were. I brought a lot of colorful skirts and wound up wishing that I had a few blouse/skirt outfits or even a dress. The restaurants were wonderful. I can’t tell you which was my favorite necessarily. I loved the appetizers at Guseppie’s the best and the lasagna too. The filet mignon at Elenor’s was soooo good. Jasmines was the Asian restaurant and although it was very tasty I didn’t want to go there twice because it would have meant missing out on an opportunity at the other two. Bayside’s was just ok I think. It was awesome to eat there on our last night in though. We were sitting outside the restaurant listening to the ocean. It was incredible atmosphere. For breakfast you have the option of going to Baysides for buffet or Eleanors for a served meal. We liked Eleanors better because it was so nice to be able to sit and relax and have someone take your order. For lunch we would go to Bluefield’s for jerk chicken and amazing calamari in jerk sauce. Or we would go to Arizona’s for burgers and wraps. You can order multiple things off of every menu so you don’t have to feel restricted to what you eat. There were nights that we would order four appetizers and three entrees!! I definitely gained weight on this holiday. I loved the feel of the restaurants too. The tables were laid out as if you were at a fancy restaurant and the service was of the same quality. At the end of every meal you felt as if a bill should appear.

THE PARIS CAFÉ

I wasn’t impressed. I should have been since I am generally a freak for pastries and cakes and especially coffee. I thought that the few things that I tried were kind of plain and dry. It is nice to be able to get desserts whenever you want though and I may just be picky about such things. They also have ice cream and specialty coffees and crepes.

SNAPSHOTS

There is a store on the resort by this name whose sole purpose is to have their photographers capture the moments of your vacation for you. It is so nice to not have to bother strangers to take your picture. There are photographers walking around with their cameras to catch you on the beach, at the water sports or during the sunset. They charge ten dollars American to print them so it can be a bit costly. We had booked an appointment with one of their photographers (Jackie!!) to meet at 5:15 and take shots all around the resort and then take sunset pics on the beach. My advice is to get the ones that you wanted printed immediately as the system went down while we were there and they lost all of our shots. I am still heartbroken about this because we had gone through them all and saved all of the ones that we wanted but waited until the last day to get them printed off in case we had more taken. I shouldn’t have waited because it kills me to not have those beautiful shots.

OTHER STORES AND SERVICES

There are a few. There is a boutique for clothing and another store that sells odds and ends that you may need during your stay. The only thing that I needed to buy was Q-tips and they cost me $2 US for a pack of 200. There is a tours office where you can book your day trips.

DAYTRIP TO NEGRIL

$52 american each. The drive was an hour and wonderful and scenic. We stopped at one store and then the times square “mall” which we could have missed. You aren’t saving any money at all and can buy everything at the airport. We also spent a couple of hours visiting Sandals Negril which is a nice resort but didn’t come close to the one that we were staying at. It just made us even happier that we chose to stay where we did. Someone mentioned that Whitehouse does not participate in the stay at one play at all deal but they actually do. It just doesn’t include the bus transfers to and from so my advice would be to talk your bus driver to include the side trip on your day trip elsewhere. On the way back we stopped at Rick’s which is a bar and a huge tourist spot. There are Jamaican’s diving off of the cliffs who accept donations for the photo opportunities. Our driver even bought us sugar cane on the side of the road on the way back so that we could try it. We did tip him because he wasn’t a Sandals employee.

THE POOLS

The french and dutch pools are both normal sized with small hot tubs attached. The Italian pool is huge with the best swim up bar I have ever seen. There was an issue with people putting towels on the lounge chairs very early to save them but at least they showed up to use them. There’s nothing as annoying as seeing rows of empty loungers that have been reserved but no one uses them. The towel service was new to me as well. The staff leaves one towel rolled up on each lounger and then there are large bins of surplus towels left at each pool. When you are done with your towel you toss it into the other large bin to be laundered. Much more convenient than using a card to sign out a towel.



THE PIANO BAR

Loved it. Did not manage to stay awake late enough to enjoy the piano player but really loved the bar. It is a martini bar and carries all of the premium liquor that you won’t find at the other bar on the resort. Grey goose vodka and crown royal were two that I was surprised to see. I drank so many cream and chocolates that I easily got my money’s worth. It’s just irish cream and kaluha but it’s was so special chilled and in a martini glass. I also tried a few other martinis while I was there. They make a great dirty martini too. There are always trays of appetizers there too for your nibbling needs.

THE CABARET

We went briefly one night so I don’t have much to say about it. Truth be told we were far too tired by the end of the night to do anything at all.

DEPARTURE

I was so sad the day that we had to leave. Check out was simple, I just had to approve the tour and Q-tip charges to my credit card and we were done. We had a 7 a.m. bus to the airport which arrived on time to pick us up. The drive back was fairly uneventful. There were so many things to look at that I didn’t notice the time that the trip took. I have read many reviews that claimed to be terrified at driving so close to the cliff so I was expecting to be scared. Turns out that the section of road with a cliff was maybe two minutes out of the entire trip. Nothing to worry about there. We hit traffic on the way into Montego Bay which was at a standstill and made me fear that we would miss our plane. I need to have worried. When we got to the airport the driver pretty much asked for a tip. He said it in a nice way but it was made quite clear. Whatever. We get into the airport and join the lineup for skyservice which proceeds to not move. There was a lineup on the left for people with children and they had top priority whenever one of the three counters opened up. We spent an hour waiting to get up to the counter and it was frustrating to watch how slowly everyone seemed to be working. Here in Canada you would spend two minutes checking in. She would look at your passports and itinerary and then punch everything into the computer and that’s it. In Jamaica it was much the same thing but in slow motion.

OVERALL

A great honeymoon destination. Adults only was a plus for us for the occasion. The fact that it was remote was wonderful to us. To be able to walk along the beach and not cross into another resorts beach was nice. Would I go back? Absolutely. I would have to go knowing that I won’t drink the beer though because they only serve red stripe and it turns out that I don’t like it. If you are looking for a resort where you can do a lot of day trips and tours this is not the place to go as it is incredibly expensive to take a private bus anywhere.

  • Stayed: January 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
30  Thank DaisyBelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2007

We traveled with three other couples Jan. 15 - 22nd. Our vacation was simply wonderful! Writing reviews can be difficult because of one's varying opinions and expectations but I cannot imagine someone not loving every minute of an experience at Whitehouse. We stayed at the resort the entire time, did not take any trips, etc. Our goal was mainly to relax and have fun and we surely did!

After a long travel day, it was so nice to spend a few minutes in the Sandals lounge at the airport while waiting for our van. The ride from the airport was "interesting!" Our driver was excellent, and maneuvered the roads very well. I will admit that I was ready to get off the van when we got there!!! One of the couples that we traveled with arranged for a private car to meet them at the airport. I would perhaps consider doing that next year. Three of our friends had luggage that didn't make it due to very close connections, but EVERYONE was very helpful in tracking it down, etc. It all arrived safely the next day. Be sure to pack a swimming suit, cover up, basic toiletries and change of clothing should you have any concerns about luggage.

We arrived at about 4:00 p.m. on a Monday. Check in was fabulous, considering how tired we were. We appreciated the friendliness of staff and the very quick service. Before we knew it we were relaxing in our room that had a wonderful view. That night there was a Caribbean night on the piazza including a craft fair and music. Unfortunately we were too tired to enjoy it to the max; for that reason I would not arrive on a Monday again.

We did book a Penthouse concierge suite, and had a room at the Italian village. (If you don't care about being up high, you may not choose to upgrade---we wanted to be on 4th floor) Friends stayed in the Dutch village and they loved that too. Our room was quite lovely. It had a jacuzzi (never used by us!) and a wonderful walk-in shower in the bathroom. I don't think that I would be unhappy with any room at the resort; they all face the ocean. We found that we were in our room very little, only in late afternoon to shower and get ready for the evening. People's comments on walking distance amazed me -- we liked the resort and how spread out it was. I would easily stay in any of the three villages.

We spent most of our days at the main pool. We like the action, and the bartenders at the swim up bar were the best ever--so very friendly and kind. Drinks were plentiful. At times I asked them to be easy on the rum; it would not be difficult to drink too much! We enjoyed the friendliness of the staff as well as the other guests. We had many interesting conversations throughout the week. (If you are not a people person and do not want to be bothered, there are many places to be on your own and relax) We were not bothered by sand fleas at all.

Highlights:
The resort---more beautiful than I could imagine!

Our husbands arranged for a private candlelight dinner on the beach. It was like a dream. Our table was two feet from the ocean!!!!

We had great food the entire week. The only restaurant that we didn't get to was Jasmine's. I ate mostly seafood and would recommend everything! Snapper, shrimp, jerk calamari (Bluefield's), salmon at Bayside, etc, etc. We had pizza at the pool for lunch if we didn't feel like going to a restaurant. Didn't go to the pastry shop--there was toooooo much great food!

Enjoyed my pedicure at the spa.

The staff----friendly, kind, helpful.

Other guests---fun and interesting!

The main pool. Liked the action and people watching. If we didn't want to participated in activities we were left alone to relax.

Dutch pool--nice option for quiet.

I could go on and on, but this is already too long. We will definately be back next January, and have plans to try and stay two days longer. Enjoy your stay, and make the most of it as the time goes so fast!

Stayed: January 2007
21  Thank litchmary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2007

Sandals Whitehouse is an upmarket resort but it is a 2 hour bone shaking drive from Montego Bay. All rooms have an ocean view and are well equipped and in very good condition. It is a large resort and some of the rooms are quite a walk from the main action. The beach is beautiful and the sea clear. The pools/whirlpools are clean and well kept. The water activities available are 2nd to none with all equipment in tip top condition. Most of the restaurants are ok but give Arizonas a wide berth. Food in the Bayside breakfast/lunch buffet is a bit limited. There are a large choice of drinks/brands available but the bar staff are a bit lacking in their cocktail knowledge. Only 1 choice of red and white wine which are both dreadful. You can pay extra for a better choice but it often turns up when you have nearly finished your meal.

The Red Lane Spa charges may seem expensive but you are given wonderful service and the treatments are much better than you would get on the high-street.

This is a fairly new resort and the staff seem inexperienced and in need of guidance which does seem to be lacking. There doesnt seem to be managers in overall control directing the staff. There are plenty of staff in ratio to guests. Some of the staff are a bit too laid-back. However, there are notable exceptions - Neressa on the main swim up bar to name one plus the guys at watersports.

7 days in more than enough at this resort as there are no trips/excursions within easy reach. I would recommend this resort but it does seem to attract large groups of americans that can get a bit rowdy.

  • Stayed: January 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
12  Thank philthebandit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 January 2007

sunzhot@yahoo.com
i am not a review writer, but after reading some of these reviews i wonder how some people can be SO spoiled !!! my wife and i went for 7 days in March of 2006 , this resort is , awsome! just book it ! take what some people complain about with a grain of white jamaican sand !!! the resort is huge, but very well laid out, if it takes 15 minutes to get anywhere in this resort you would have to CRAWL on your back !!! the food is great! especially Arizonas, unless you dont like all the fire grilled lobster tails you can eat !! the drinks where amazing, but the good lord helps those who help themselves! if there is not enough rum or vodka or whatever, just ask for more, the staff is AMAZING!!! and will give you all you ask for. they are always happy ,and laughing, telling jokes, the jamaican people are wonderful!

my complaints would have to be as follows...

1. the beach is to BEAUTIFUL!!
2. the food ; way to much of it and far to DELICIOUS
3. the staff were far to gracious and helpful
4. the sun was shining VERY brightly
5. the water was unbearably clear and warm
6. the sand was far too soft
7. the rooms were altogether far to luxurious
8 .the ride from the airport was a blast, (you are on vacation; have fun!!!)
9. the main pool (italian village) was too large and inviting!
10. all those pretty humming birds can be a nuisance!!!
11. far too many chairs on the beach, i just stood there and looked at all my choices,til it was dark. i just could not decide which chair was right for me!!!
12. those pesky eagle rays kept jumping out of the water and splashing my wife and I
13.and how dare those cute little starfish for lying on the ocean floor for our amazement

so aside from all those horrors i think anyone would have wonderfully romantic expierence

p.s. ......those little yellow fish.........
....they won't bite you if you don't pee in the water !!!!!

52  Thank chris&stephi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2007

If you are even thinking about going to this resort, stop thinking, and just go! You will not find a nicer all-inclusive in all of the Caribbean/Mexico. And if you are considering lesser-priced resorts. Let me tell you: Sandals Whitehouse is worth every penny that it will cost you. I am a travel professional and I have traveled extensively through the Caribbean and Mexico. I promise you: You will not do better. You can read the rest of my review if you like, but that's it in a nutshell. Go. Just go.

As to the negatives I've read on other reviews:

BUGS: A NON ISSUE. I promise you that you have more bugs in your yard in the summer than you will have here. We had a brief afternoon shower almost every day we were there, yet the bugs were not bothersome. Bring some insect repellant with at least 30% deet (for adult use only). I would recommend this for travel anywhere in the tropics.

RIDE: Pleasant and scenic, but yes, it can be scary. Our driver on the way over was a maniac. I prayed the whole way. Our driver on the way back was cautious and I was comfortable.

LONG WALKS: A NON ISSUE. If you have any health issues that will limit your ability to walk, make sure this is noted when you book and request the Italian Village. If you are in the Dutch Village, you will have no more than a five minute walk to dinner. I would prefer Italian or Dutch. But even the French Village is a ten minute walk to the resort center. But even there, the beach and pool are at your doorstep.

HIGHLIGHTS:

BEACH- First of all, it's HUGE! The resort was pretty full when we were there, but still we could stroll out at any time of day and get a nice chair in the shade or sun, in the quiet or near the activities. No getting up at 6 AM as I usually do on vacation just to get a good beach spot!

Rather than purchasing a small track of beach and building back from it, Sandal's has built all along a very long beach. Every room has a balcony and an oceanview. White sand. Clear and calm water. Plenty of shade. Plenty of sun. Plenty of space. I have not seen a larger, longer, more private beach at any resort anywhere.

POOLS- Whether you want a quiet pool or an active one, you pool people wont be dissapointed either.

SERVICE- Consistantly outstanding. Great attention to detail combined with genuine Jamaican charm and hospitality. The best service we've received anywhere. And the nicest, most beautiful, charming, gracious staff.

FOOD - Great. As to those who have said that all the food wasn't great: Well, being on vacation in a different country, I tried a few things I don't normally eat at home. Some of them I loved. Some I wouldn't order again. All the food we had was wonderfully prepared and served. Personal taste is going to dictate that you will not love everything you eat.

You do not make reservations for the restaurants. Just go where and when you want. We enjoyed the breakfast buffet, but took all of our lunches and dinners ala carte. (There is ala carte breakfast, too, if you want it.) Eleanor's was the fanciest "white glove" restaurant. We loved it the most so we ate there three times in the week. If you are new to all-inclusives, usually you need to make dinner reservations and you are limited to how many times you can dine in the fancier restaurants.

LOCATION - Beautiful, quiet, unspoiled.

SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE, almost: I would recommend this resort to absolutely any couple of any age. We met couples in their twenties as well as senior couples who were enjoying themsevles. A very mixed-age crowd. If all you want is quiet, relaxation, and maybe a little romance, you will find it. There were also pool games and swim-up bars for those who want a little more action. There was plenty of evening entertainment. The drinks are good and stong and plentiful. But for anyone who really wants to party hearty, you may be a little bored. Although the elements are there for you to party with (drinks, entertainment), the clientelle at this resort seems to be on the quiet side. There wasn't a whole lot of partying going on. This was great for us, but I know some people like to get a little bit crazy on vacation. You could do it at Whitehouse, but you might be doing it alone.

Ok, I guess I've rambled enough. I'll go back to what I said in the first place: Stop thinking. Just go.

    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank BEACHWOMAN22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sandals South Coast

Address: White House, Jamaica (Formerly Sandals Whitehouse)
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Jamaica > Westmoreland Parish > White House
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in White House
Price Range: £312 - £830 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals South Coast 5*
Number of rooms: 360
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover the undiscovered. Journey to a forgotten Jamaica where the natural beauty is simply unforgettable. Within a 500-acre wilderness preserve, blue mountains, lush palm groves, pristine coastlines and shimmering turquoise waters create an unbelievable backdrop for a monumental resort. Sandals Whitehouse Europe Village & Spa perfectly blends the exotic allure of the Caribbean with the refined elegance of Europe. Charming Italian piazzas and fountains are surrounded by gardens resplendent with fragrant foliage, while three European-inspired villages – Italian, French and Dutch – are home to luxuriously-appointed, all oceanfront rooms and suites. Each one offers magnificent views overlooking the two-mile long beach, and top tier suites come with Sandals’ legendary Butler Service. Seven restaurants serve mouthwatering gourmet cuisine from around the world, and entertainment ranges from a sophisticated piano bar to bonfire beach parties and a chic nightclub. This resort is truly a world unto itself, where time is all but forgotten and the only moment is now. World Travel Awards: Sandals Resorts “World’s Leading All – Inclusive Company,” 16 years in a row. Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand,” 18 years in a row. Sandals Whitehouse “Jamaica’s Leading Spa Resort” Five Star Diamond Award, American Academy of Hospitality Sciences. We’re so very pleased to announce that Sandals Whitehouse European Villages & Spa has been named in Condé Nast Traveler’s Voted 2012 Readers' Choice Awards “Top 15 Hotels & Resorts in the Caribbean,” coming in at No. 10 and “Top 30 Resorts in the Caribbean,” coming in at No. 4 as part of the annual “Best in the World” poll. Presented Certificate of Excellence for 2012 and Travelers' Choice Hotel for 2012. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Whitehouse European Village Hotel Whitehouse
Whitehouse Sandals
Sandals Whitehouse Jamaica

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