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“Endless Pleasure”

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Secrets St. James Montego Bay
Ranked #11 of 64 Hotels in Montego Bay
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 5 May 2014

I enjoyed staying at the Secrets St. James so much that I decided to go back! Not only were there superlative amenities, the service and the employees made the visit more exciting. From the moment we arrived, our concierge, Therese, was warm and welcoming. She literally took the time to know our names and communicate with us continuously to ensure our stay was pleasurable. Then when we were utilizing the resort amenities, other employees made the stay phenomenal and memorable. The poolside entertainment of Hennessy, Mello, and Tia were excellent. I particularly enjoyed the Reggae dancing and Line dancing. The Aqua Zumba instructor did a remarkable job as well.

Stay here and you will NOT be disappointed!

Room Tip: Higher rooms have pristine views!
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled solo
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1  Thank Ray F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3,271 - 3,277 of 6,438 reviews

Reviewed 4 May 2014 via mobile

I celebrated my 40th birthday here and it was the best birthday trip ever! The food was outstanding. Public/private beach and pool options added versatility. There were a variety of events available right on the property. If you wanted to venture off and do something off the property that could also be arranged. I would definitely return!

Stayed: March 2014, travelled solo
4  Thank trinafj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SWO_STJconcierge, Manager at Secrets St. James Montego Bay, responded to this reviewResponded 29 May 2014

Dear Valued Guest:

Thanks for having selected our resort for your recent birthday celebration. We truly appreciate your positive comment about our food, entertainment among other resort facilities. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your comments with us and we look forward to welcoming you back Home.

Best Regards,
Christina Smith
eConcierge Assistant

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 May 2014

I should start by saying this is our first all inclusive vacation, so we have nothing direct to compare it with.

The first thing to say is that Secrets St James and Secrets Wild Orchid are not really two separate resorts as they share one site and most facilities.

Our 'Junior Suite' was really a typical US style hotel room with two queen size beds, full bathroom (complete with Jacuzzi bath) a sofa, small table and chairs and a small balcony with a couple of chairs. perfectly acceptable, spotlessly clean, but not really anything special.

It's a large site with a long strip of private beach, four pools and seven restaurants - plus a few shops and other facilities.

Check in was pretty slow, but efficient once a clerk became free.

The 'all inclusive' arrangement was exactly that. It was almost impossible to spend anything on-site and the shops would only accept credit cards or charging to the room for even the smallest of items. A few dollars for tips was all you needed to carry. And take US dollars, not Jamaican. Everyone preferred these.

Given the size of the place (we were told about 700 rooms) the restaurants were generally very good. French, Italian, Japanese, West Indian, Mexican and a couple of seafood/steak were on offer. We only had one dud meal (in the Mexican) the rest of the time we had no complaints. The Oceana got our vote as the best, with lunch in the Seaside Grill being very pleasant. If you want something lighter or a top up there are various carts offering things like jerk chicken and a hamburger joint right on the beach.

The breakfast buffet offers probably the biggest selection I've ever seen. Brilliant.

Although we booked a package (via First Choice) the cost of the all inclusive works out at around US$200 a day. It's probably worth it providing you eat well and take advantage of the 'free' bars. If you are a light eater and a non drinker it's expensive.

It's possible to eat and drink from 7.00am to 2.00am at one or other of the restaurants - and if you are still hungry or thirsty there is 24 hour room service.

Our biggest complaint was the US$15 a day charge to connect to the internet. Come on Secrets, no resort anywhere in the civilised world claiming to be five stars charges for Wi-Fi. It's 2014 - not 1994. However, this might be a way of pushing people to upgrade to their 'Preferred Club' which at US$150 a day is expensive, unless you want a hot tub on your balcony 'free' Wi-Fi and use of a couple of 'exclusive' pools.

The staff were fabulous, we could only think of one person in 10 days apparently having a off day, my wife was very complimentary about the spa, we went on three well organised trips to see some of the island and there is plenty to do during the day. Organised snorkelling trips to the reef was our favourite.

We were strongly advised not to go out alone but there are (expensive) taxis to take you to Montego Bay if you wanted to.

A very good holiday resort - but not quite the five stars they claim.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank John F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 May 2014

We just returned from our second stay at Secrets St James, and it was once again heaven. This year we took my wife's mother and father and they were highly impressed as well.

Much to our surprise, once we checked in and were escorted to our room, we were assigned the exact room we had last year, room 4410. We loved the room then and were stoked to get it again. Fourth floor, fantastic view, perfect!!!

We stayed in the preferred club again, this year they tweaked it just a bit. First, they added a key entry from the pool side. You have to use your room key to access the preferred club, brilliant! Second, the WiFi was a million percent better. For the first five days of our weeklong stay, we had great WiFi throughout the property. Unfortunately, on 1 May, the resort changed over to Digicell for their WiFi services and there was a temporary degradation to the services, although, they did install a modem in all the preferred club rooms so we had great service in the room, we lost the capability to have it throughout the resort, not a big deal and a the cost of getting better!

Service was incredible again. Orlando, aka the singing cowboy, serenaded my wife and mother in law over breakfast. The guy is awesome, and is typical of all employees there, they simply can not do enough for you. On two occasions, I failed to lock my room safe after coming back to change. Our safe contained an Ipad, two Samsung smart phones, $700 cash, passports, credit cards and other things. On both occasions, our housekeeper, Kaye, called security straight away, and the safe was secured and a note left in the room to tell us. NOTHING was ever touched. What a testament to service. I awarded Kaye one of my Tripadvisor Outstanding Service pins for her honesty and dedication.
Drink service was awesome as well, and nightly entertainment was good as well. There was not a fire show this time, which was a slight disappointment, especially for my inlaws who had never been to Jamaica before.
Saturday night is still the lobster buffet at the world café. Grilled, steamed, curried, bisque, you name it, all the lobster you can consume! I wish they still offered the steak buffet, but that wasn't the case on this trip.
One word of caution....and this is in no way a slight to the resort.....BE VERY CAREFUL exiting the shower. The floor becomes extremely slippery. My wife fell H A R D! Luckily, she suffered only a bruised hip, but she is only 33, if this happened to an older person, who knows how severe it could have been.
The resort furnished toothbrushes, tooth paste, an assortment of quality bath supplies, and disposable razors. My wife has extremely sensitive skin, and the quality of the bath supplies was best evident by the fact she did not break out in a rash from them. She cant use anything from Bath and Body works even, but she loved the resorts toiletries.
Food was good, one area that could use attention is the scrambled eggs at the breakfast buffet. Often they were so running they resembled a soup more than eggs. That however is my only compliant. The jerk chicken cart made it rounds during the day. Yummmmmmm And at night, a jerk cart was adjacent to the main restaurant row as well, and those wings, will light you upppp!!!
Once again an outstanding vacation, complete with a returning guest and facebook friends banner of the door to welcome us.
The bed was very soft and comfortable. And the room air condition worked like a champ! If you have never been to Jamaica, you will truly appreciate coming into a cool room after a long day of relaxation in the sun.
Secrets St. James is easily our favorite resort, and we will definitely be back in the very near future, hopefully back to room 4410 as well!!!. Thank you to everyone for giving us another great vacation, but more importantly, thanks for making my inlaws first ever international vacation so memorable. YOU GUYS ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Room Tip: Higher the better
  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank dave3232
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2014

Me and my husband arrived at 4.15pm on 17th April after a long flight from the UK and almost 2 hours getting through immigration at Montego Bay. We were hot and tired and just wanted to get to our room to unpack and freshen up, We were told our room wouldn't be ready for another hour which was so disappointing given that check-in is from 3pm. However, we didn't make a fuss, we went for a walk around the beautiful grounds, had a drink and returned an hour later.....only to be told our room still wasn't ready! Now I was really unhappy! I had emailed the hotel prior to arriving requesting a room on the 5th Floor and this is what I was allocated, but, it still wasn't available. I was dealing with Shemeika on the front desk and she said I could have a room immediately on the 2nd Floor or wait another 30 minutes for our original room. So, although I was cross we decided to wait another half an hour as we really did want the great sea views. So we went to The Lobby Bar for another drink and returned 30 minutes later. Guess what? Still not ready! OK, so now I was furious and asked to speak to a Manager. Kevin, the Front Desk Supervisor came to speak to me and said he would personally go and check what the problem was. When he returned he told us that the drape between the bedroom and the bathroom wasn't in place and that was the reason for the hold up. I said they could put it up the following day but that we wanted to go to our room immediately. So, 2.5 hours after arrival we finally got to our room.

Room 3542 - absolutely spectacular views, full sea view and pool view, very clean and the most comfortable bed we have ever had on a holiday, it was heavenly. We had a bottle of Merlot and a Cheese plate waiting for us which was nice and a bottle of Rum wishing my husband a Happy Birthday for the following day.

The hotel then went really over and above in making up to us for the awful start. Although we weren't in a Preferred Club room we were given full Preferred Club privileges so had access to the 2 private pools, the lounges, we had free Wi-fi for the 11 days and in addition to all of this we were given a Romantic Dinner on The Beach and a Couples Massage and spa day pass. We were absolutely over the moon with this and the Preferred Club pool at the St James side really made a huge difference to our holiday. It was so quiet and peaceful and the service around the pool was amazing. Our usual lady (I'm sorry I can't remember her name) even brought our drinks without us having to request them - superb service! The day after we arrived was my husbands birthday and when we got back to our room late in the afternoon there was a bottle of Moet Champagne on ice - exceptional!

Food - we ate at all of the restaurants and we really enjoyed the food. The Surf and Turf at the French Restaurant was excellent and we both loved the Lobster nights. Other favourites were the Jerk Chicken on a lunch time (first time we had had this and it was divine), the dinner on the beach and the Habachi Table at the Japanese restaurant - good fun!

We met some lovely couples from Chicago and Washington and spent most evening chatting with people at The Lobby Bar - big thanks to Allando for taking such good care of us and for making my lovely French Martinis.

So, following a bad start it just got better and better and we had an amazing holiday. We loved the property, I have recommended it to everyone at home and really hope we get to return soon. We would definitely upgrade to the Preferred Club next time as, for us, the extras you receive really are worth the additional cost.

Thanks to Shemeika, Kevin and Isabella for making this a fantastic holiday.

Room Tip: High floor for un-obstructed sea views.
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank DR40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2014

We were at this resort with another couple and both of us were celebrating a major wedding anniversary. Love, love, love this place! The resort was so beautiful. The view from from our room was breathtaking overlooking the ocean. Everyone was so friendly and hospitable. It truly made our stay one that we will always remember! We had a little problem when we checked in, but were taken care of by our Apple Concierges, Annalisa and Therese! They handled everything and we were able to stay in a fabulous room in the Club Preferred section. We liked that we had many choices for meals each night and went to a different restaurant every time. They had live music and entertainment in the evenings and we spent a lot of time just sitting outside enjoying a cocktail and having fun! I would highly recommend the Secrets Wild Orchid and St. James! You will not be disappointed! The spa was an added bonus and there are lots of water sports if you are interested.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Mary B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2014

My husband and I traveled to this resort in March. We would definitely return and had a fabulous vacation. One of the best parts was the interactions with the staff. We would like to thank Omar and Dane for making our trip so very memorable. They were very attentive, personable and dedicated to making our visit so special. We hope to visit again and see them both!! They really went above and beyond!!!!

Room Tip: ask for Ocean view in the corner
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Martha W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SWO_STJconcierge, Manager at Secrets St. James Montego Bay, responded to this reviewResponded 29 May 2014

Dear Valued Guest:

It is absolutely pleasing to read that you would definitely return to our resort for vacation after having experienced what we had to offer this past March. Thank you for your kind words especially regarding our staff as they are truly some of our greatest assets.

Thank you for writing your review and we do look forward to welcoming you and your family back for many future visits!

Best Regards,
Christina Smith
eConcierge Assistant

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Secrets St. James Montego Bay

Address: Lot A59, Freeport, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint James Parish > Montego Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Business Hotel in Montego Bay
#9 Romantic Hotel in Montego Bay
#9 Spa Hotel in Montego Bay
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Montego Bay
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Montego Bay
#11 Luxury Hotel in Montego Bay
#11 Family Hotel in Montego Bay
Price Range: £294 - £591 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Secrets St. James Montego Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 350
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Secrets St James Hotel Montego Bay

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