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“A Tropical Escape?..... sandcastles resort , ochi rios”

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Sand Castles Resort
Ranked #21 of 36 Hotels in Ocho Rios
S.E.London
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A Tropical Escape?..... sandcastles resort , ochi rios”
Reviewed 27 October 2009

well , I stayed at sand castles resort a low/ mid budget complex of studios & apartments sept-oct 2009.
Since the main reason for my trip was to take time out to relax & recoup all my energies, this hotel, pretty much did what it said on the tin. .

This hotel ticked all the boxes. It was quiet, comfortable and most importantly it was clean (low season is the best time to get away from it all, including from other tourists).

The duty manager, selena, was very pleasant and pretty much accommadating as were all the staff at Sand castles, the room was cleaned daily & it was no trouble to ask for any extra towels or anything, the fridge broke down twice but it was soon replaced, nothing seemed to be to big or too smal to cater for.

Although the studio room wasnt huge it had pretty much everything you needed including a large cooker/ oven, plenty cupboards space,dining table and private balcony..
it was compact, but nice,with matching curtains, bedspread & sofa cover... ooooh

sand castles is situated in a prime location for taking all the sights & day trips in and its just minuites away from the famous Evita's , the new bobsleigh experience & popular 'Tropical Escape day spa' and of course the world famous Dunn's river fall. Theres even talk of naming the North coasts new athletic stadium after the miraculous Usain Bolt (arms... 'to the world').

With the hotel being based on ochi rios beach & every amenity just steps away,.. this could very well be the holiday your looking for... suitable for romantic couples, families & Oaps (stairs at entrance may cause problems for the disabled).

In all I felt my thompson two week holiday to sandcastles was decent value, (soon to be even better value with the daily flights rumoured to start soon).

Highlights to my holiday:
(A) undoubtedly the exciting, jamaican concert celebration for Usain Bolt & the other amazing jamaican atheletes who seem to have put their success down to eating lots of the parishes best yams..... lol.. the event was made even better by flying in the Berlin bear moscot to do a few jamaican dances, like,o the world & something called Gully creeper... ( it was a great experience)...

(B) I have to also confess to enjoying the' Bob Marley' experince trip ( its a must)!!! another favourite was my treatments ( on the rainy days) at the Tropical Escape day Spa accross the road from Sand castles resort.. It was so relaxing & serene I kept going back again & again. I had the manicure & pedicure special offer at half price to Sandcastle guests, then went back for a wax treatment and finanally a sweddish massage just before flying out the following day... Its the only way to travel...lol
The decor, ocean waves music ,herbal teas, & naughty platter treats make it a must visit if your in ochi especially in rainy season ( sept- apr?).. The management & staff are great too.

Ok now, lets get to the nitty gritty, things I didnt enjoy about my stay can be summed up pretty neatly: the mosquito's and the so called : pimps,( beggers) what ever you want to call them ...I think mosquitos kinda fits their description too...

Anyway, although they are a thorn the tourists side it seems the jamaican tourist board are taking tourists complaints seriously and have doubled the amount of tourist police in & around ochi so your pretty much safe & can enjoy your hols... Just take it easy man... ;)

Keep posted for my review on my holiday in cuba, havana earlier this year feb'09 and also just booked a cruise to egypt in dec '09

Hope you found my review helpful, happy holidaying :)

from: An experienced traveller but novice writer, x

  • Stayed September 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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Helpful?
2 Thank Tempted2travel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Toronto Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 September 2009

I just arrived back from my vacation where i stayed at Sandcastle Resort; I checked in close to midnight because i drove from Kingston Airport ..upon my arrival i was greeted with a complimentary drink, slow but good customer service from the front desk a bell man to take my luggage to my room as there is no elevator. I had a studio apt with ocean view the room had everything that you would need..ac a bit old but so what....My room was extremely clean and room service was available everyday. The resort is close to clubs,restaurant ,supermarket,pharmacy and atm. If you are looking for somewhere to have fun then this is not the place for you but if you are looking for a clean reasonable place for yourself and family just to sleep then I would definately recommend Sandcastle.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank AD6TorontoCanada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BROOKLYN
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 September 2009

We were booked in C3 a beautiful room. We left the room 1 pm and returned 4pm. A key was used to enter the room because the police said ther was no forced entry.My mini laptop,camera, i-pod, 2 cell phones blackberry and G1(we didn't use our new york phones because we got a phone to borrow in Jamaica) portable DVD player my daughter's diamond ring and diamond tennis braclet, and gold erring,my niece DSI game. All these were stolen. The only thing they did was to move us to another room and upgrade the room. They said insurance will contact us . Nothing else and the front desk staff were so rude except for about three members. I dont' want to name the ones that were nice, but some were. Most were very rude. This is an inside job and I am taking this the furthest I can because I want my things that were stolen. I will never go back to this place. Quite a few people has been telling us not to go back ther because we are lucky we got out alive. They say this is a common thing there and because they know we have to return to the US they dont' do anything about the security and thieft. Please people dont go to sandcastle when you go to jamaica. You have to work too hard to buy your things to go ther to have people thief them. BEWARE OF SANDCASTLE THIEVES!

  • Stayed August 2009
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank LILLYPODBROOKLYN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Ocho Rios hotels

ny
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 September 2009

I had to post another review...people beware. I stayed at Sand Castle hotel in February of 2009. I must say the time we spent there (9 days) was great. We occupied 3 rooms on the second floor. Room service was not available but that was not an issue because it's located next to everything. I went back with my mom and and sister from August 20, 2009 to August 26, 2009. Well let me just say this the room was nice...this time we were on the 1st floor. However guess what happened. One day we went out on the road to eat...when we got back my cousin wanted to go on the internet so I told her to use my laptop...I told her where it was and lo and behold it was GONE!!! We started checking our stuff and they had taken a laptop, a diamond bracelet, an i pod, a DS game system, a digital camera, a portable dvd player and a blackberry phone. We informed the hotel management and can u believe they gave us some cockamamie story about management not being available!!! W e called the police and the police told us to not stay there because every week they get a different complain about guests being robbed there at Sand Castle Hotel. People the person who robbed us had to be an employee. I say this because 1. u cannot enter the compound without an arm bracelet to show that you are a guest unless you are accompanied by a guest of the hotel. 2. the locks were not broken and we still had our keys in our possession. 3. My cousin said one of the male employees joked with her about swapping my laptop (a HP mini) with his regular full size one. The situation only got worse because no manager could be found for days. Someone must have alerted the media because they showed up and wouldn't you know it "managers " appeared out of the blue. These so called managers have never been seen since we were there at the hotel. The so called managers got very upset that we granted an interview to speak about the situation! The worst part about the trip is that we were told later that we cannot place a claim to have any of the items stolen refunded BECAUSE when we signed the papers to stay at the hotel there is a disclosure that says THE HOTEL WILL NOT BE HELD LIABLE FOR ANY PROPERTY STOLEN!!!!!!!! People please do not stay at this hotel...As u can see I did not lie...the first trip was goo but the second was a disaster. The funny thing is that I read a lot of reviews that were written by previous guests and some of them were about people getting their property stolen but we decided to give it a chance...never again...STAY AWAY FROM SAND CASTLE HOTEL...unless you want to be robbed...we're just glad we were not in the room when it happened...don't risk it people...I am from Jamaica so it pains me even more to have to say this about my own country.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank whyter1092
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
FLORIDA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 30 August 2009

After having the worst two night at Doctor Cave i was bit reluntant in going to Ocho Rios to continued my vaction.But upon arrival at the Sand Castle Beach Resort and was greeted by the warm and friendly staff with our complimentary drinks i knew in had choosen the right place for my family. The pent house suite were very spacious and have that home away from home look. The hose keeping staff were very friendly and cater for your need, the view from the balcony at night was very romantic. The night life was awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!. Sand Castle Beach Resort i would recommend for anyone especially with children very safe.My family is loking forward for there nest trip to Jamaica at Sand Castle.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 40SHELLY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
london
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 27 August 2009

just got back from my 2nd trip to jamaica. Sandcastles is ideally located if you like to be in the real environment of jamaica. I did like the restaurant and food. The hotel itself looks quite good from the outside. Considering where it is situated it was quite peaceful. At first i didnt like my room but i soon adjusted to it. Unfortunately the safe in the room was out of use and the receptionist did inform us that we could pay a daily rental fee to use the safe in the main office. This did not work for us so we just locked our valuables in our suitcase. The room was cleaned regularly however i did see the odd cockroach. Bring insect repellant just incase,you have to be realistic you are in the west indies. I was quite pleased with the head of security Mr Stuart who helped me out tremedously when i had a problem. The only thing i would say about this resort is that they need to pay abit more attention to minor maintenance jobs, as some of the rooms looked abit less desirable. Overall a good place to stay.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank pixie015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Burnham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
142 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 August 2009

Like all hotels you can always read good and bad reviews and like many I didn't expect much of Sandcastles. As it was I was more than pleasantly surprised. I booked an apartment at the resort (D15) direct through Holiday-rentals (http://www.holiday-rentals.co.uk/p220117). I can't comment therefore on the rooms you get with the hotel generally however I couldn't fault this particular room at all. It was exactly as described and was clean and comfortable with good A/C.
The pool isn't the largest by any means and wasn't exceptionally clean however it wasn't that bad that you wouldn't be happy swimming in it. A short walk from the hotel was a wide and long sandy beach with shade and loungers.
The hotel restaurant (we weren't on an all-inclusive package) was limited but fair quality and value. The menu wasn't large and I wouldn't have wanted to eat there every day.

The hotel is ideally situated in Ocho Rios. Straight out of the door and you are on the main street. The town has all you need if you want to do your own catering and has enough places to eat to remove the necessity. The restaurants in the town were OK although nothing to write home about. The best we found was Evita's on the hill over-looking the town. It's a lovely little Italian restaurant with good quality Italian food with a Jamaican slant. Judging by the celebrity photos on the wall we weren't the only ones who enjoyed it. It's a short taxi ride from sandcastles however if you ring to make a reservation mention that you saw their advert in your hotel and they will arrange a free taxi (both ways) for you. Meal for two there was about $100USD.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank goodgrr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sand Castles Resort

Property: Sand Castles Resort
Address: 1 Main Street, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Region: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 36 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sand Castles Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 174
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Also Known As:
Sand Castles Hotel Ocho Rios
Sand Castles Ocho Rios
Sandcastles Ocho Rios
Sandcastles Beach
Sandcastles Resort Jamaica
Sand Castles Resort Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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