First- I don't typically like all inclusive places due to crowds that mimic hearded cattle and not great food, but this was definitely a good experience. We stayed in a basic OceanFront room #1005 with a gorgeous view. We didn't need more because we were barely ever in the room. We didn't have a 'butler' as some did but we didn't need one- we were fine making our own dinner reservations, finding our own chairs on the beach, etc.. It is cool that they give you a cell phone, though, to contact your butler at any time you need.
To start, the planes are annoying in the beginning but then you get used to them.. you truly do. You just 'pause' in conversation for 5 seconds everytime one flies over and clink glasses with your new friends and smile about it. The noise is still worth the short 5 minute drive after landing to get to the hotel. Every evening Virgin has one HUGE plane that takes off, it's quite the sight. Everyone stops, stares, and ooh's and ahh's at it.
Second, the hourly shuttle between the two Montego Bay resorts (Royal Carribean is the sister resort) is to die for. You can use all of their amenities and restaurants and beaches.Two resorts for the price of one, located 5 minutes apart. Awesome.
Third, Clothing optional beach on the private Island off of the Sandals Royal Carribean resort is awesome. Best swimming hole I've seen yet was there. And lunch is brought out there daily to the 'Bamboo Shack' (must wear clothes to lunch though because it is shared with non-nude folks!) And I am not a nudist, but had no problem shedding the bathing suit, and I loved it!!! Just this feature would keep me coming back for more.
Fourth, great staff. Shout out and high fives go to: Alford at the Front Desk in Montego Bay- he was sooo friendly. Romaine at the Beach Bar- super friendly. Owen at the island bar off Royal Carribean- makes you feel very welcome. Tevin at the pool bar (that kid has major personality!). Pheonia at the island who ran the Thai restaurant, she was just so sweet and willing to do anything to make your stay pleasant. Jasmine and Andrea who gave us wonderful body scrubs at the spa and smiled everytime we saw them around the grounds. Dionne the breakfast chef was beyond amazing with her friendly demeanor and amazing food. The lady who does the entertainment is fantastic. And the landscaping staff is just sooo sweet. I met one of them at the awards night (for which they won an award) and the young man I talked to was just so proud of his departments work around the grounds. (Which were spotless and perfectly kept!) It was nice to see.
A special thank you goes out to the Royal Caribbean waiter Gregory and Chef Chevon- they provided the absolute highlight of my trip. I am a MAJOR foodie. On my last night I ate lobster and all the other goodies, but after I asked to see the chef. Chevon came out, very friendly, and I begged him to make me something that was TRULY Jamaican, something his grandmother might serve, and NOT resort food. He made me a tasting plate of diced pumpkin, caliloo cooked two different ways, and spicy curried meat. It was the definite most awesome moment of my entire trip. I'm sure he wasn't 'supposed' to do that, but the fact that he did made me so incredibly happy. I think that there should be a place very close where you can get REAL Jamaican food- not resort Jamaican food (We ate at the Oleander Jamaican restaurant and it was still 'resortized' Jamaican food). I want cubed pumpkin and goat and stuff!
Tip: Buy an insulated travel mug at the gift shop and use it for ALL your drinks. Not only is it more sanitary but it keeps your drinks cold and covered. Wish we had known that from the start.
A few minor downers (but nothing major) were:
*All the food is salty or sugary
*The ocean has lion fish and sea urchins so make sure you can see where you step.
*Waiting for drinks in lines sometimes. (Not always though)
*Sugar sugar and more sugar in those drinks!
*A travel agent convention on our last day was hugely annoying as they created waits and lines for food and drink
Other than that, it was Irie, Mon!!!! :) Denise and Joe, CT
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- •Largest private white sand beach on the north coast •The entertainment capital of the Sandals brand with nightly professional shows and upbeat, active, fun-loving daytime activities. •Six exquisite dining options•Complimentary transfers to Sandals Royal Caribbean and Sandals Carlyle. Enjoy all the luxuries included in our “stay at one, play at three” concept offering 18 dining options •Air-conditioned departure lounge•Voted Sandals “World's Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted “Caribbean's Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sandals Montego Bay Hotel Montego Bay
- Sandals Hotel Montego Bay
- Montego Bay Sandals Hotel
- Sandal Montego Bay