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“Outstanding service - we will go back!”

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Sandals Royal Plantation
Ranked #3 of 35 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Certificate of Excellence
Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Outstanding service - we will go back!”
Reviewed 28 May 2014

My husband and I stayed at the Royal Plantation April 24 - May 1, 2014 and loved our stay!

First a few comments about logistics and the resort -
Before you go, you will get promo messages offering Club Mobay for $30/pp. DO IT! We did not purchase this and regretted it due to the number of flights that landed around the same time as us. There might have been around 1,000 trying to get through immigration at that time and the expedited processing would have been well worth it.

Once we finally made it through immigration we made our way to the Sandals airport lobby - There staff greeted us outside the lobby and helped us tag our bags then sent us inside where we were cooled by the air conditioned area and refreshed by the self serve Red Stripe on tap and champagne in the fridge.

After a few moments, not long at all, our airport transfer arrived and we made our way to RP. Our transfer driver, Renford, was super nice and very chatty. He made us feel safe and comfortable on the 1.5hr drive to Ocho Rios. He pointed out a few landmarks and pulled over so we could take pictures. You MAY tip your transfer driver and we did.

Once at the RP we were greeted by the front desk staff and showed to the lobby waiting area where we were served more chilled champagne. Soon our butler Audell met us in the lobby and began giving us the grand tour. I'll admit, the tour at first was a bit much to take in - but it was good to be shown from the first day where everything was and hours which certain spots were open.

The RP does have a lot of stairs. In fact, I'm not sure how handicapped equipped it is. But the terrace overlooks an amazing ocean view, great for panoramic shots. The ocean water really is as blue as in the brochures and the sand really is as white and soft as you've heard. The Royal Plantation is heaven on earth!

As a guest at RP you have the option to visit the Grande Riveria next door. My husband and I did venture over there on 3 occassions: lunch, a catamaron excursion and dinner one evening. Before our trip we anticipated that we would want to spend a lot of time over there because of the size and how fun we thought it would be. Let me tell you that each time we went over there we couldn't wait to RUN back to the RP. The staff at the Grande Riveria was nice, but the staff at the RP really got to know us.

So let's talk about the staff!
THE STAFF!! We loved them and miss them as much as, if not more than, paradise itself! Our butlers Audell and Tafari made sure that we had an alarm clock that was compatible with my iPhone 5 - and they did this without us even asking! They made all of our dinner reservations for us and personally escorted us to the Grande Riveria when we had reservations at the resort next door (good thing they did - GR is huge and we might not have found our own way). You can tip butlers.

The beach butler, Adrian learned our drink preferences and kept us with fresh drinks all day long. You can tip the beach butler.

We spent many nights in the Wobbly Peacock though. And this is where we met our friends - the Bartenders and Servers!
They were nice to chat with and taught us various Patois phrases. Andre, Iyesha, Necorian and Junior really treated us right. Each bartender has their own signature drink - try them all!

But Richard Brown went out of his way more than one time for us. On our first night at the RP Richard was serving. I think he could tell we wanted to explore the resort a little so he asked us what we were drinking and told us he'd bring it to us. We tried to decline his gracious offer because we wanted to walk along the beach, and as I mentioned there are a lot of stairs - the beach was just going to be too far away from Richard's station. But, Richard insisted and told my husband he would find us. About 5 minutes later as we're walking along the west beach we see a figure running down the beach with a beer bottle in hand. It was Richard!!!! We were blown away that he actually found us and followed through with this request.

On another occassion my husband was inquiring about Dragon Stout, which is a Jamaican beer that isn't internationally known so it isn't stocked at the RP. Richard told my husband that he was about to go on lunch at 5pm so he would get my husband a bottle and bring it to our room. We gave him our room number and about 30 minutes later our BEST FRIEND Richard knocked on our door with a Dragon Stout in hand for my hubby! He must have paid for it out of his own pocket because we didn't give him any money (you aren't allowed to tip the staff - with the exception of your butlers and the beach butlers - we double checked after this!). We cannot say enough fabulous things about Richard - he deserved a TIP and more for the effort he put in to making us feel like royalty.

I'm attaching a picture of Richard - tell him T & C say hi!

There are so many good words to share about the Royal Plantation and the staff. We will be back for certain!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Tia_Craig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Valdosta, Georgia
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 May 2014

My husband and I stayed here for our honeymoon in October, and couldn't bring ourselves to book anywhere else for our anniversary trip! No reason to mess with perfection. The food was on point, FAR superior to Grande next door. Our butlers were amazingly accommodating. We also had a GREAT driver from the airport to the resort who took us to fun little places along the way and taught us so much about the country.

Room Tip: No matter what room level you get, you're going to have a blast. Rooms are for napping, not for...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank jadashlyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enterprise, Alabama
Level Contributor
59 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 May 2014

My husband and I got married here in December 2013. We chose this resort because we wanted an amazing wedding backdrop along with a wonderful honeymoon combined.

We landed in Montego Bay and I was worried about our luggage and transportation because we were stuck behind a huge line of British nationals in the immigration line. We waited in line about 2 hours to have our passports stamped, found our luggage safe in baggage claim and proceeded to the Sandals Lounge.

The ride to Royal Plantation was about 90 minutes and we were the only couple with the driver. He offered to stop at any of the towns along the way if we wished to grab a drink or shop. We arrived at the resort in the early evening and met Fiona our Butler who got us settled in right away. Fiona was amazing! Anything that we wanted or needed she was right there to help.

We were booked in an Orchid Oceanview suite which was wonderful. The mini-fridge was fully stocked with beer, wine and mixers. My husband is a Diet Coke fanatic and Fiona removed some of the beverages that we didn't like and replaced them all with Diet Coke when we were at dinner. The best part about our room was the great view of the ocean front and everything was available within steps of our door.

We had dinner at the Terrace restaurant and it was beautiful and elegant. We stopped at the Peacock Pub for a nightcap before returning to our room. My husband and I are huge fans of Big Bang Theory and we were elated to see that the TV had about 50 U.S. stations including TBS. Sadly yes, leave it to my husband to fly 2,000 miles and be footsteps away from the most beautiful ocean in the world, and he wants to lay on the bed and watch TV and mess around on the free WiFi.

The following morning, we returned to the Terrace for the most fantastic breakfast ever! The layout of fruit and breakfast choices on the buffet was amazing. My husband and I made it a point to try at least half of the breakfast menu and were not disappointed! The Brie, Apple and Prosciutto is worth going back to the resort alone. To top the morning off, we got to dine with live peacocks standing right beside our table. They were so pretty and entertaining to watch.

After breakfast, we met our wedding planner, Naomi who took all of my wishes and made them a reality. She made sure everything was taken care of and I didn't have to worry about anything at all. I was able to sit back and enjoy everything about being bride.

I got to spend most of the day in the spa to have a pre-wedding test run of hair, makeup and nails and did not get a chance for lunch. I met my husband at the Pub for a late afternoon snack. They have a wonderful bar menu and I chose the Scotch Eggs and Chili. The chili with nacho chips was the best chili I have ever eaten! It was my first time eating a Scotch Egg and I enjoyed it thoroughly!

Wednesday was wedding day. My past experience with weddings has been one with stress, worry and fighting. My Sandals wedding was the complete opposite. We got married at 11 in the morning so that we could "get it over with" and my husband didn't have to sit around in a suit all day. He woke up at 10 AM, showered and was in place at 10:55. It was beautiful and stress-free for both of us. We got to have our wedding dinner at La Papillion, the French Restaurant where the chef selected a special wedding menu for us due to my allergies and my husband's picky pallet. Dinner was wonderful and the conversation with everyone around us was enjoyable as well.

One of the conversations was with an older couple whom the staff knew by name. Come to find out that it was their 16th time at a Sandals property and 9th time at the Royal Plantation. The cool part about R.P. is that right next door is the Sandals Grand Riviera and that you can hop the shuttle to visit the restaurants at their property through the Exchange program. The older gentleman said that a lot of the Sandals properties are very big and one has to walk quite a distance to get to certain amenities. He said that R.P. is their favorite because it is quiet and that the entire resort has the best staff.

The next night, we went over to the Riveria for dinner. It was a beautiful property, but I understood what the older gentleman was talking about. I was in heels and it was a pretty long walk to Valentinos. Mama Fiona (that's what I called her because of the great care she gave us) made our reservation and saw us to the restaurant, seated us and poured our drinks. She then left us in Brittany's care and told us to call her when we were ready to ride back to the R.P. After a delicious meal, we called and had the shuttle pick us up. Fiona wasn't in the shuttle, but she called shortly after we got back to the property to make sure that we made it back ok. Just like a good mom. :)

The rest of the week was spent enjoying the beach toys on the property, having lunch at the Royal Grill and going on excursions that were offered.

The one reason why we chose the Royal Plantation was the Butler Suites, the second reason was because R.P. offered the ATV excursion through the jungle and zip-lining through the rainforest. Both of those events were outstanding. At the end of the ATV excursion, the guides took us to a small 15 foot cliff where we could jump into the warm ocean and wash off all of the mud. What a great time! I could have spent 4 more hours doing that adventure!


I was truly sad on the day that we had to return to the states. We have talked about doing an anniversary trip every year to that resort. My husband wants to see what else Sandals has to offer, but the cost of a butler suite at the other properties is so much more expensive. Royal Plantation is a hidden gem in the Sandals family and will be my top vacation choice again this year.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Kasey C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lauren B, Online Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 31 May 2014
Hello Kasey,

Thank you for sharing the amazing Weddingmoon experience you had at Sandals Royal Plantation! We are thrilled to hear that our resort provided the perfect romantic setting for your very special day and that it was stress-free for you! Your photos perfectly captured all the love of that day. We wish you both the very best and cannot wait to welcome you back in the near future!
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Kingston, Jamaica
Level Contributor
27 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 May 2014

The experience was heavenly. It is a "must go". The service was amazing from we entered the hotel until we left it. The wine that awaited us in our rooms was greatly appreciated and welcoming. I would recommend it to anyone.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Tygerpuff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lauren B, Online Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 31 May 2014
Hello and thank you for your review!

We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay at Sandals Royal Plantation and that you enjoyed every moment of your vacation! That is exactly the kind of excellent feedback we love to hear and it was a pleasure creating such a memorable experience for you.
We cannot wait to welcome you back for another stellar vacation in the near future!
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Dayton md
Level Contributor
14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 May 2014

My wife and I had our second visit to Royal Plantation from March 16 to March 24, 2014 to celebrate her 50th birthday with another couple. From beginning to end the trip was absolutely perfect.

We were at Royal Plantation for the first time back in 2008 and had such a good experience that we told all of our friends and many of them also enjoyed trips to Royal Plantation. Since that time, we have gone to a number of other island destinations. Nothing even approached the quality of our vacation at Royal Plantation.

We have traveled extensively and I can state without any hesitation or doubt that Royal Plantation is the very best hotel in Jamaica and one of the best in the entire Caribbean.
The accommodations are beautiful and immaculately clean. The food is exquisite, with many excellent choices and an impressive variety. All of the meals are of gourmet quality from breakfast through dinner. I didn't eat anything that wasn't savory and delectable. Unlike so many “all-inclusives”, this small (75 room) hotel will impress even the most discerning guests. There is no skimping on anything. Want lobster and filet mignon every day? Go for it. Top shelf liquors too.

But as wonderful as the accommodations and food are, it is the unbelievable service that sets Royal Plantation head and shoulders above the competition. The service is AMAZING! Everyone is so friendly and helpful. We did not have anything but A+ service for the entire week. Perfect from the moment we arrived to the moment we left.

Everyone was wonderful, but I want to give special praise to the following fantastic, sweet, friendly, engaging men and women who made our vacation so special: Orlando, our favorite, who greeted us with a big smile and an offer of assistance every morning and would do anything at all for us. He epitomizes perfect and professional service. Taniqua who always found us the table we wanted. Waiters Romane, Hushane, Oral, Nickoy, and waitress Alieka for expert and attentive service at all of our meals. And Trewayne who was quirky and fun and so attentive.

The beach was always a great time when Adrian was there showing us how to “Live Funner”.

The management, the front desk, our personal butlers, ,every bartender, every chambermaid, everyone who worked at the Royal Plantation score an “A” for service and friendliness.
We will be back next year to celebrate our friend’s 50th birthday. With all of the wonderful places in the world to see and experience it seems silly to keep returning to the Royal Plantation but frankly no hotel could top the food, the accommodations and the service that Royal Plantation provides. It is "practically perfect in every way"

We are hooked forever!

Room Tip: Since the hotel is small (75 rooms) and all are ocean front, you really can't go wrong with ANY...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank JCH56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lauren B, Online Review Coordinator at Sandals Royal Plantation, responded to this review, 31 May 2014
Thank you so much for your great review of Sandals Royal Plantation. We're thrilled to read that you had such an amazing vacation with us. You enjoyed our beautiful grounds, fun activities, delicious dining and the genuine hospitality of our wonderful staff.
We look forward to welcoming you back for another incredible experience soon!
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Hudson, NH
Level Contributor
72 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 May 2014 via mobile

This was the third visit to the RP for my wife and I, our last being four years ago (too long!). We're pleased to report that not much has changed, still a wonderful caring staff, great food, and a beautiful beach.

Our butlers, Neil & Kenroy were attentive to our needs, not hovering or doting, but there when you needed them. Two fine young men who obviously enjoy their jobs.

If you did have a favorite location on the beach it was necessary to drop down early and place your beach bag, this was not the case on our previous visits. I would say that though the resort was at capacity, there was never a case that we noticed of anyone not being able to get loungers, though you might miss out on an umbrella. Cleon & Avery (both at the beach on our first visit five years ago) are still doing an outstanding job on the sand. Two more pleasant guys would be hard to find.

Breakfast at the terrace and a bite for lunch at the beach grill were great. We had two wonderful dinners at Le Papillon, once inside and once outside. We only had one dinner inside at the terrace, which was my only marginal experience. My wife's meal was fine, but the steak I ordered was terrible. It was a cut that should have been rejected by the kitchen and never dropped on the grill, mostly grizzle. Don't be afraid to send something back if not up to snuff.

We attended the returning guest dinner, despite having been told by another couple that they experienced a "hard sell" for future bookings the previous week. We did not find that to be the case, there was no sell at all and we enjoyed a wonderful experience and fantastic meal.

The rooms are all very nice, as on our past visits, housekeeping is terrific and our room was always serviced by mid afternoon. We would say that it might be time to time to think about freshening up the rooms and baths.

Small, intimate,quiet, if that's what you're looking for to recharge the batteries, then this is your place. It will not be another four years before our next return.

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank bogeyjim30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lafayeffe, La
Level Contributor
147 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 May 2014

We just recently enjoyed a five day stay the the Royal. Everything remained pretty much the same as we remembered it. As commented by one of the other reviewers, the staff makes the hotel. We were assigned Oyrane, and Marvin as our butlers. They are often assigned a number of guests, so we were assisted most often by Oyrane, as Marvin may have been busy with others. I am happy that the butler service has calmed down some. On previous visits they have been so anxious to please that they try to out do each other. Our butlers were marvelous and always available to assist. If you stay here you can request your previous butlers. It was a real homecoming to see so many familiar faces. Cleon and Adrian at the beach/pool, always so friendly and helpful. Junior serving at the bar, Natalie at the terrace, and Stanford keeping the grounds so well manicured. We even had a visit from Althena, who works at Beaches, another Sandals property. So sweet for her to come by and say hi. Everyone seems to remember us! Mr Grant is now the new general manager and doing a great job with the staff. Ms Caroline is really a hands on managing director. The property is one of the most lovely in the Sandals chain, truly breathtaking. The suites are generous, with all the usual amenities. Good sized bathrooms and soaking tubs. The beds are comfortable and pillows soft. We always try to stay in 301 which has a pretty view and small patio. I am sure there are other nicer views, but we are use to this room. I found that the food had even improved since our last visit. It has always been good, although the selections for lunch and dinner may be a little abbreviated. Met a new cook, Matt. Great lunch at the beach cafe. Perfectly cooked swordfish and Mahi Mahi. There is a brand new sommelier, Marko, who will add some wine tastings and help with beverage selections. He is delightful and well traveled. I guess my only criticism is that when you stay at an all-inclusive, by definition you usually drink what is available. There is extra charge for premium liquors. We are not heavy drinkers, but would like more and better California wines available. We are not as familiar with foreign selections. Hello Marko Finally, the airport transfer service has always been efficient, with pleasant drivers, whether from Mo Bay or Kingston. Thank you Marvin. All in all, another pleasant stay! PS: Don't miss the delightful afternoon tea service.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank southernbelle007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sandals Royal Plantation

Property: Sandals Royal Plantation
Address: Main Street, Ocho Rios, Jamaica
Phone Number:
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 Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Ocho Rios
#2 Family Hotel in Ocho Rios
#2 Romantic Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Spa Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Sandals Royal Plantation 5*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
•All suite resort and all are serviced by butlers trained by the Guild of Professional English Butlers•2 private beaches with beach butler service•The Caribbean’s only Champagne and Caviar Bar•Exquisite International, Mediterranean, Caribbean and French cuisine•24 hour in suite dining•Complimentary transfers from this resort to all Sandals Resorts•Voted Sandals Resorts “World Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row•Five Star Diamond Award - American Academy of Hospitality Sciences ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sandals Royal Plantation Hotel Ocho Rios
Royal Plantation Ocho Rios
Royal Plantation Jamaica
Sandals Royal Plantation Jamaica/Ocho Rios

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