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“Great anniversary trip” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Couples Tower Isle

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Couples Tower Isle
Ranked #5 of 36 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Certificate of Excellence
Hoboken, New Jersey
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great anniversary trip”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 November 2013

My husband and I stayed at CTI for 6 nights the week before Thanksgiving. Overall we had a great stay.

We booked a Premier Ocean View. We were assigned an end unit in block 3 right next to outdoor stairs which was very convenient. Unfortunately we had an issue with ants getting in through the window which would not close properly/lock. After our first night we ended up moving right next door which did not have the ant issue. The room was not huge, but large enough for relaxing/sleeping. As many other have said our shower leaked into the rest of the bathroom every day, but not a huge deal to us. The balcony was large and we enjoyed relaxing on it, taking the view in. Even though we were right above the swim up bar, we had no issues with noise.

We received excellent service from the front desk staff, especially when changing rooms. Service at all of the restaurants was great. Flag service on the beach was hit or miss, but it was a quick walk to the bar.

Food was very good at the buffet for breakfast and lunch. Great variety and lots of tasty vegetarian options. We especially loved the veggie bar- chips and dip, roasted veggie sandwich, salads. We ate dinner at the Verandah and Eight Rivers, two nights each. Food was great at both. Bayside had great ambiance, but we didn’t love the food. The appetizers were delicious, but the rest of the dinner fell flat for us. The beach party had great food, but was very crowded.

Evening entertainment was good, great dancers and musicians. I am not the type who likes to stay up late and party, so it was sufficient. It might be a little dull for people who want more of a party scene.

I heard that the resort was at 60% capacity when we were there. We had no issue getting a lounge chair at the beach or the pool, plenty of shaded spots. The beach was not huge, but sufficient. Not large enough to do walks/runs. Tennis courts were kept nicely. We checked out the island for about an hour one morning, but decided it wasn’t for us.

We attempted to do the glass bottom boat tour and snorkeling, but conditions were not good the days we tried and the trips were canceled. We did do the catamaran cruise and Dunn’s River Falls and enjoyed both. We also kayaked and did the pedal boats.

I would definitely recommend this resort. Overall the food and service was great. We had a nice, relaxing week with fun activities and met lots of other friendly guests.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Stephanie P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (954)
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English first
chicago, il
Level Contributor
74 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 November 2013

Had a 5 night stay here earlier this year and will probably not be back. I will say NOTHING was bad about the stay but after taking a Caribbean trip every year and paying the most per night for this hotel, we will look to go somewhere else next time.

Travel to/from the airport was great and like all the other hotels, you can wait in their little airport area to avoid pestering from timeshare/taxi drivers. They have drinks and bathrooms which is nice. The trip took maybe 90 minutes which was fine. The driver was nice and they made one stop for drinks b/c the other people in our van really wanted to stop. I personally didn't understand this as we were only 45 minutes from our all inclusive which has free drinks galore. At any rate, once you get there, you check in as a large group so there was a bit of a wait and our rooms weren't ready.
***TIP- while everyone else went to the bar to eat, i went to the concierge and booked all our excursions and restaurants. Some of our dining reservations were at 9pm b/c they were booked up which I was bummed about but that is many times the way it is at these types of resorts. Anyways, I got the first pick from my group b/c I saw them go after check in. check in was fine, didn't try to up sell us or anything.

ROOM:
We got the best room that wasn't a suite. It had a great ocean view and was right above the lobby on the third floor which was actually a lot more quiet than i expected. The room was clean and nicely made but it was fairly small with a bed, 2 chairs, table, TV. There wasn't a couch as we have had in other rooms and just wicker like chairs on the balcony. The Bathroom was smaller than I had hoped with a shower with a cloth curtain that would be soaking wet when we showered and water got out of the shower area since it was not a tub shower but just had a lip. Overall, the room was fine.. i was a disappointed for it being the best non-suite room.

Food:
We ate at every restaurant and the food was good at all of them. We liked the Asian restaurant the best however, when I asked for another chicken satay b/c I did not care for something else, the waiter was a bit rude and said "that is going to take a while since, do you really want another?" Being at an all inclusive resort, i would have wished for a more tactful response. The juice bar by the beach was nice and the bar by the pool was average and kindof slow service.

Excursions:
This was the best thing about this hotel as we did golf 3 days. They had a special for 3 rounds which we chose. The golf is included but the caddy (which is required) is not. With tip ($30 bucks), i think it was about 80 bucks a day for us... don't quote me but just want people to know it is NOT free and the caddies deserve (and will expect a tip). The course is in decent condition and we enjoyed it. There was a chicken shack at the turn which had the best chicken we ate the entire time. If you golf, bring extra cash b/c the tips and chicken add up. Also bring drinks from the hotel if you can to avoid buying them there. B/c you take a bus, travel/wait times can add up so just plan for that to be the majority of your day.

We also did Dunn River Falls which was really cool. Great experience. Word of the wise.. there is a gauntlet of merchants at the end which will try to sell you things and carve names into little statues to make you buy them. If you aren't interested, I suggest, you try your hardest to follow the signs and make for the exit!

Overall, like I said before, nothing was wrong with the trip but nothing wow-ed us. We met people that have come there for 10+ years so maybe we just missed the appeal but will probably not be back.

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
Helpful?
3 Thank nickiwms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlantic City, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 November 2013

We just got back from our wedding and honeymoon at Couples Tower Isle. We were very impressed at how friendly the staff were and how hard they work, it seems though that most of them were there all the time. The service we received from the staff was very impressive. the Food was excellent. Our favorite restaurant was the Asian but it was difficult to get more than two reservations as it was full all the time and you could see why. The buffet food was very impressive we enjoyed their many selections at breakfast. best buffet we had experience
We met a lot of staff but our favorite was Kirk who never passed us and knew our names.
The social directors were very nice and seems to go out of their way to ensure that you were having a good time.
The catamaran cruise was very enjoyable and the crew ensure that we learned the Jamaican dance.
Our only disappointment was that we had to keep asking for our wedding gifts even though we had heavily tipped Latoya we did not get them until we were ready to leave the hotel and missed out on our massage our other disappointment was that our room was not cleaned on time and we were never told that there were times you could have requested for cleaning.
Our ride to the airport was very quick and comfortable our driver was very accommodating in allowing us rest stop even though we had to leave the hotel five hours prior to our flight we had to sit around in the airport for over an hour to wait for our flight.
To sum it up we did have a great stay at the hotel and look forward to returning one day for our anniversary.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank penny j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CouplesSocialMgr, Public Relations Manager at Couples Tower Isle, responded to this review, 2 December 2013
Hi Penny J, congratulations on your recent nuptials. We are pleased that you had an overall good experience with us. We will review in detail your comments regarding tipping at the resort. Looking forward to seeing you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Frederick, MD
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2013

We just got back from Couples Tower Isle after a 1 week vacation. It had been recommended to us when we were talking to the all inclusive rep at American Express. Generally we do not do all inclusives and had never been to Jamaica although we've travelled extensively in the Caribbean over the years.

Jamaican customs was a breeze. Others have mentioned the 2 hour trip by van from the airport and it is a bit long. The van going (as opposed to return to the airport) was small and a bit cramped.

Check in at the resort was efficient and pleasant. We were first told our room, building 5 on the fourth floor, was not ready and we were offered a room on a lower floor which we declined. However, we were taken to the pool grill and after a quick bite to eat, the room was available. The room was clean, bright and had a partial ocean view with a balcony shaded by palm trees. Our minibar was not initially stocked, but after a quick call, they delivered our drink requests.

Food was uniformly excellent. The buffet was extensive and varied with a good mix of international and Jamaican options. The patio grill food was fresh and not greasy. They have a veggie bar with multiple veggie and fruit options. The 3 sit down restaurants were all good. We ate twice each at the 8 Rivers and Bay Side restaurants (make reservations on arrival). The food and service was on par with top restaurants in any major metro area in the US. Only draw back was the available (free) wine selections were uninspiring. You have to pay up for better wines.

To burn off all that food, there are a number of activities. We hit the weight room which is reasonably equipped along with treadmills, ellipticals and bikes. Took a spin class taught by a visiting German national, which was a good workout. Did not do yoga, but there were classes daily. We golfed 18 holes twice at the Sandals (formally Upton Golf Club) course. It's a nice mountain layout about 15 minutes away. I believe it's a Greg Norman redesign, reasonably challenging and in great shape. We walked it and you have to take caddies ($17 pp and we tipped them $20 each as they carried our bags). Carts are also available for an extra fee (but you still have to take caddies). They also rent clubs but we brought our own. The vistas are gorgeous along with fauna you're not used to seeing like allspice and poinciana trees. A word to the serious golfer, if you play bent grass greens, these are slow Bermuda and you really have to hit your puts firm (as my caddie Claude told me over and over ...). My only gripe about golf is that you're generally finished in 3 1/2 hours (approx 12 noon) and the bus doesn't come back to pick you up until 1:30.

We also did several days of scuba diving. The dive guys, Douglas, Colin and the rest were highly skilled, enthusiastic and fun to be around. I finally certified after years of doing resort diving courses and Douglas was very accomodating, working the pool sessions into my schedule. The dive sites are close (within 20 minutes) of the resort. They have nice reefs, wreck and drift diving. Visibility was 60-70 feet on our dives.

The catamaran cruise was nice though we had to go to the Ocho Rios port (15 minute drive) to get on. Great music and rum punch (though nobody got trashed). Dunn's River Falls also a must do trip. You climb up a series of cascading water falls. The guides are fun and bring a waterproof camera if you have one. You will also need a pair of water shoes. Bring some money as the guides expect a tip. They also push a video that they take of the group ($35). We skipped it.

The beach is nice but small (If you want to walk miles on the beach, go to Negril). Vendors are discrete and confined to a small area near the beach. If you buy something, bargain. They expect it.. Nightly entertainment was uniformly good.. They have a house band with various guest singers playing a combo of pop, dance and Jamaican music. There was also a decent jazz band on Monday nights at the piano bar. There are nightly shows with a variety of excellent folkloric presentations such as drum/dance troops and steel bands.

We did not do the spa, sailing, tennis but these activities seemed to be good according to other guests. Overall we were pleasantly surprised by the staff and quality of the resort and would not hesitate to recommend it.

Room Tip: Get a higher floor.
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  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Jazzjourney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CouplesSocialMgr, Public Relations Manager at Couples Tower Isle, responded to this review, 2 December 2013
Hi Jazz journey, thank you for that spectacular review. We love that you got so involved in all our activities and experienced jamaica and its culture to the fullest. Please be sure to visit with us again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sandy Hook, Connecticut
Level Contributor
31 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 November 2013

I agree with past reviews and will just add my two cents. We were at the Iberostar Grand Hall last year and you cannot compare the two. One resort is huge and Couples Tower is a smaller more intimate resort. If you are looking for a bit quieter, relaxing vacation this is for you. We had a great time as many excursions you would normally pay a lot for, are already included. I think we would want a resort that has more activities and music throughout the day. The bar tender told us they have rules of when they can play music because of disturbing people that may be sleeping. We took advantages of all activities and had a very nice time though. The beach is small and you get to know everyone after sharing a few activities together. The resort is perfect for any couple that wants to relax...or get "Au Natural" on their private island!

Room Tip: Go for the Deluxe Ocean View. Worth the extra $!
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  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Pittfarm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CouplesSocialMgr, Public Relations Manager at Couples Tower Isle, responded to this review, 2 December 2013
Pittfarm, Couples Resorts indeed promotes rest and relaxation. Its good to know you were able to do that and we appreciate you visiting with us. See you soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bernardsville, New Jersey
Level Contributor
34 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 November 2013

We just returned from our Anniversary Trip to Couples Tower Isle. We had a great time but I have to say that the staff really made the trip. We had purchased the optional renewal of vows ceremony and purchased dinner on Tower Isle (both extras cost around $200+ USD) but were the highlights of our trip.

We had excellent service from Latoya who made all the ceremony arrangements and was so flexible and helpful.

The weather cooperated most of the week and the water is beautiful especially when the sun is shining. We thought that the ocean view room was worth the extra cost (but the garden view rooms look quiet and face some nice gardens).

The food at the restaurants (especially Eight Rivers, Bayside and the Veranda) was excellent.

The buffets for breakfast and lunch were plentiful and varied, but we ordered room service breakfast most days and enjoyed breakfast on our terrace overlooking the ocean.

We preferred our third floor room (vs. the lower floors) because it felt a little more private when we were outside on the terrace at night.

Loved it.

Room Tip: Third floor and ocean view was a great location.
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  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Thomas O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CouplesSocialMgr, Public Relations Manager at Couples Tower Isle, responded to this review, 2 December 2013
Happy Anniversary Thomas O. Our staff are number 1 and we are delighted that Latoya and others proved that to you and hope you will be back soon to visit.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sioux City Iowa
Level Contributor
27 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2013

My wife and I just returned from Couples Tower Isle. It is a beautiful resort with excellent service. The food and drinks are outstanding. The grounds are well cared for and all of the personnel seem happy to make your vacation the best possible. The one draw back is the long ride from the airport, but even that was not a huge problem. If you want a getaway in a smaller resort dedicated to service, this is the place.

Room Tip: Although the view might have been better on a higher floor, we liked the convenience of being close...
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  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank negotiator2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CouplesSocialMgr, Public Relations Manager at Couples Tower Isle, responded to this review, 26 November 2013
Dear negotiator 2010,

Thank you for having vacationed with us. We are delighted that you had a great time and cant wait to see you again soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Couples Tower Isle

Property: Couples Tower Isle
Address: St. Mary, Ocho Rios, Jamaica (Formerly Couples Ocho Rio)
Region: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Ocho Rios
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#4 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4 star — Couples Tower Isle 4*
Number of rooms: 226
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Playground to Hollywood celebrities in the 1950s, glamorous Couples Tower Isle exudes a chic sophistication perfectly balanced by a relaxed Caribbean sensuality. Perched on the lush terrain of Ocho Rios, Jamaica—the resort seduces with breathtaking sea views, a wide sandy beach and century-old palm trees. Discover the joys of snorkeling among the reefs, windsurfing on the waves, or sailing into the sunset on a catamaran, rum punch in hand. Intricate blue tile work and jade chaise lounges offset the striking white retro architecture. Luxurious rooms boast private ocean-breeze balconies. Whether being pampered in the Zen-inspired spa—recognized as "Best in the Caribbean" by Travel+Leisure—sipping cocktails at the piano bar or indulging in an exquisite meal alfresco, Couples Tower Isle creates countless intimate moments that inspire you to return again and again. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Couples Tower Isle Hotel Ocho Rios
Couples Hotel Ocho Rios
Couples Ocho Rios
Couples Hotel Isle
Couples Ochos Rios
Ochos Rios
Couples Tower Isle Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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