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“Unfortunately you cannot photograph service”

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Sandals Royal Plantation
Ranked #3 of 35 Hotels in Ocho Rios
Certificate of Excellence
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Unfortunately you cannot photograph service”
Reviewed 14 August 2014

Unfortunately you cannot photograph service, because if you could the picture would be breathtaking. The Sandals Royal Plantation surpasses every expectation in service and cuisine. The only disappointment is that unless we visit again (which we will) all other vacations will be subpar. Understand that this write-up will not do diligence to how the staff can impact your vacation. Ranked the second best resort in Jamaica, I’m surprised it doesn’t top the chart.

Food
Not being one to photograph food and bore people with them later, I couldn’t help but fill a camera roll with the meals. Presentation was creative, selection was outstanding, and the flavours were complimentary. Being fortunate enough to have eaten at some of the world’s finest restaurants, I can safely say that the Royal Plantation can play with the best of them. You must eat there to know what I am talking about. When you’re having trouble deciding between the rack of lamb or the steak and lobster, they’ll happily offer you both.

Service
Pampered and spoiled. From the moment we arrived to the Sandals Lounge at Montego Bay airport, to the final goodbye delivered by the manager and our new friends (staff of the resort), Royal Plantation staff were but a request away to serve our every need. My wife and I were fortunate enough to receive Sean and Fiona as our butlers for our 9-day stay. Courtesy calls, surprises in our rooms, arranging dinners, local advice, and friendly chats were just the beginning of what they provided. I cannot express my gratitude for the relaxation and romantic touches they accented our honeymoon with. Their passion for service coupled with their genuine kindness, made saying goodbye to paradise and new friends that much more difficult.
Shout outs for service that went above and beyond are also owed to: Adrian, Larkland, Andre, Dowarge, Natalia, Jason, Oshane, Orane, Romane, Sheldon, Delgaurdo, and Dennis (from Sandals Grand Riviera).


Beach/Pool
Having visited some of the world’s best beaches in the South Pacific, I can safely say The Royal Plantation beach rivals some of the finest. While it is somewhat small, the water is an exotic turquoise and the sand is pure and fine. The staff maintain it hourly by sweeping away anything washed up by the sea and scan the area with snorkels for anything prickly. If you find you are getting a little too warm from the Jamaican sun, the staff are there to cool you off with cucumbers for the eyes and a rose water mist at the snap of a finger.
The pool is somewhat disappointing as it doesn’t offer much of a view and is clearly quite dated. However, they are currently building a beachside coldcuzzi, which will be a nice improvement.

Atmosphere/Entertainment
The nightly performances were great. Jason and Oshane do an excellent job of picking up the energy in what could otherwise be a little too quiet at times. If you want complete relaxation this is the place, but if you are looking for a little more nightlife you will want to take the 24-hour free courtesy shuttle to any of the other sandals resorts just a two-minute drive away. Personally, I like the option of partying somewhere else and returning to peace and quiet at your own little piece of paradise.

Grounds/Facilities
Roaming Peacocks, extravagant fountains, and immaculate gardens are only a few of the small touches that make this classically rich architecture pop in what is already a naturally beautiful location. Workers are constantly maintaining and improving the resort.

Tips:
Stay at the Plantation and visit the nearby sandals resorts for entertainment and meal alternatives. You have access to all of the Sandals grounds, while no other guests have access to the Royal Plantation.

Tip your driver to and from the airport ($20-$30)

Tip your butlers according to their service, but do remember their earnings are dependent on your tips as they are paid differently than the rest of the staff.

Do the wreck dive. Having dove some amazing locations like the Great Barrier Reef and Whitsundays, this dive is still of interest.

Visit Scotchies (off the resort) for some of the best jerk chicken and pork.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Steve_Lobo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
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  • Service
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  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (648)
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york pa
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 August 2014

My husband and I stayed at Sandals Royal Plantation July 23 - 30, 2014 for our fifth visit and found everything to be as great as our previous trips. Food and drink quality excellent, but the very best thing about this resort is the staff. Room butlers Richard and Sheldon were always there when needed, but not at all intrusive. Donard was our was our butler in the past and greeted and treated us like old friends. Of course, beach butlers Cleon and Adrian are the nicest guys on the beach offering great conversation and beach service. All the staff absolutely make this property exceptional. This is the first time we did not have a full patio and really missed it. We won't make that mistake next time. Great place, wonderful island!
We'll definitely be back.

Room Tip: Definitely book a room with a full balcony, not a French balcony. We prefer rooms on the West side.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Susan 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, 11 August 2014
Hello there Susan,
Thank you for your review. We are thrilled that your most recent visit to Sandals Royal Plantation was as wonderful as you had hope it would be and that our staff did a fantastic job at seeing that all your needs were met! It seems like you enjoyed every minute of your trip and that is exactly the kind of excellent feedback we love to hear! We cannot wait to welcome you back for your sixth visit!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Norman, Oklahoma
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2014

My husband and I got marred at the Royal Plantation on July 18 this year and our stay was from July 16-23. It was amazing. Everyone was super nice and gave us great service. The food was out of this world. Naomi the wedding coordinator was amazing and made our special day go smoothly and everything was perfect. We did just the beautiful beginning but for us it was all we need plus some. OJay one of the beach attendants was so attentive. He helped us get back and forth for scuba diving and made sure we weren't late for other appointments. He was a big help to us with all water sports we participated in. Damian is the most amazing server of all time, everytime we turned around he was serving us food or a drink, it seemed like he never went home, however he always had a smile on his face and was happy to serve. Our butlers were Kenroy and Neil. Both were great and made our wedding night special with fancy decorations in the room. We did find out that another couple that joined us with different butlers got room decorations almost nightly and candy and a bookmark and a little more then we did which made us jealous. But it was a great experience either way. Kim-Loi the travel girl made all excursions we wanted to do easy and organized she's a great girl. The peacocks were also realy cool just wandering around and adding to the scene. Overall it was just a perfect trip, with a perfect wedding, and we couldn't be happier. We will go back someday and I have been recommending it to everyone. Thanks Sandals for making our wedding and honeymoon so amazing.

Room Tip: We had the lowest level room and it was still a great room for us with plenty of space and kept clea...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank April G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Grand Falls Windsor, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
86 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2014

From exquisite dining to excellent spa treatments to absolutely fantastic beverages, this quaint but exclusive resort is for anyone who has worked hard both mentally or physically and wants a well earned rest with a touch of elegance.
We stayed here in April-May of this year, but have been so busy since our return I simply did not have time to write this review earlier.
Royal Plantation is small by most resort standards, but this is what makes it so special. It is one of the most relaxing resorts we have ever enjoyed. The staff there are superb and make you feel like family. The Butlers are there for you whenever you need them , and do those little extras that make you feel so special.
I admit it costs a little more to stay here, but it is worth every penny. Meticulously clean, delicious and extra special dining, and virtually perfect spa treatments make it the perfect getaway.
We intend to go back, but only after we have tried other Sandals for more adventures.
Thank you, everyone!

Room Tip: This hotel is located next door to the Grand Riviera. We recommend doing the Grand Riviera first, an...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank TGS2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Knutsford, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2014

Delightful location. Treated as extra special by all the most friendly and cheerful staff. I would name them but I notice that on all the recent reviews this has already been done. Butlers Sean and Fiona looked after us amazingly, nothing was too much trouble. Louis Grant the General Manager was most helpful, available and friendly. Would love to return again sometime soon.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ANNE T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milton, Georgia
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2014

From the moment my wife and I entered this resort we had nothing but good things occur. We splurged and took the Governors Suite and it was fabulous. Roomy, clean and with two spacious rooms and porches. The two beaches are small but very private and the water is wonderful. If you want to chill out, this is a great resort. If you want to dance the night away, you can spend time at the piano bar or go to the Sandals resort next door (Grande Riviera) which is much bigger and busier and has a busier night life. Our week went by fast but we will be back next year to enjoy another wonderful week in Jamaica!

Room Tip: All rooms are butler rooms and face the ocean. The Governors Suite is wonderful!
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Hal W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montreal
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2014

We just returned from our trip to Sandals Royal Plantation. This was my husband and my first true Sandals experience (we went to Sandals Royal Hiccacos in Cuba but it is not the same calibre). Our overall experience was fantastic. There were a couple of issues: the biggest was that you could not go anywhere in the resort without running into stairs... Stairs to your room, stairs to the beach, stairs to the restaurants, etc. The hotel is built on a cliff so it is understandable that there would be many levels. However, even though there is an elevator, you can't get to most places without encountering quite a few stairs. The other issue, a small one, is that you had different waiters for breakfast and lunch all the time. There was no one who took 'ownership' of you. Those were the take-always. However, there were lots of exceptional things the hotel offers that make up for these small issues. The food is extraordinary! Everything from the coconut shrimp on the beach to the afternoon tea on the terrace, the lobster and scallops at the Papillon, everything was fresh and authentic. The scenery is stunning. All rooms have ocean views. The rooms are small by today's standard and the bathrooms are a bit dated but they were very clean and nicely appointed. The hotel offered a number of free activities including the glass bottom boat trip, snorkelling, tie-dying, etc. Evening entertainment was very good. We particularly enjoyed the Sandals Dancers. One of the nicest touches of the Royal Plantation is the butler service. Our two butlers, Chadworth and Ashpole, were very sweet. Both were very polite, attentive, and pleasant. They addressed their women customers by 'my lady'. I could get used to that! They would make our dinner reservations and escort us to dinner in the evenings. The resort was a really great place to relax, quiet and calm -- not a big party scene. But if that is what you want you can go next door to the Riviera. All in all, we had an amazing time. We met a lot of nice people, many of whom were returning guests. That speaks volumes about the resort! The Royal Plantation chocks up to be one of my favourite destinations and I can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank dlba
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 Luxury Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Ocho Rios
#3 Spa 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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