Just got back from Riu Ocho Rios last weekend. Overall it was an excellent experience and exceeded expectations. Mind you, your expectations have to be reasonable. This is a huge resort with a wide variety of travelers and requirements. I was there with my wife and daughter (11 mo) and had a great time. The staff were very friendly, the people at the resort were great, the bartenders were great and the resort was well maintained. Here's a review of the basics.
Cleaned daily. Didn't have issues with cleaning staff walking in as we were out most of the day (that's the point of vacationing at a beach resort, right). One day we had to run up to the room and the cleaning lady was very nice about leaving half-way through her cleaning and returning in a half hour or so. Free drinks are available in the room (Rum, Vodka, Coke, Bottled Water (Wata), etc.) and replenished frequently. There is a safe in the room which we used. Washroom was fine, a bit of a musty smell in the bathtub, but no real issues. The AC worked fine, had to turn it on high along with the ceiling fan to get the room really cold during the day, but it the AC alone will get the room freezing cold at night.
Long beach, pretty clean (yes some cigarette butts or garbage, but overall its pretty good), lots of loungers, 2 beach volleyball courts, 1 beach soccer area, various activities throughout the day. There is a bar in between the two wings and you can access the pool bars on either of the wings as well.
Had no issues with loungers, towels were generally no problem, although they didnt have clean towels on two occasions. One of those times, they said they'll have them in 20 minutes and did. The second time I got towels from the other pool as I was headed that way anyway.
The food was generally ok. The gourmet restaurants were quite good, the buffets were what you would expect from buffets (fairly good just dont expect gourmet). St. Anne, the main restaurant has a lot of choices, although the food is repeated most days (except on the theme nights - twice per week). They also set up some different things on a grill outside which is nice. The jerk hut on the beach was great, we'd often get chicken from there and take it to the restaurant nearby to add other items to the plate. Sometimes you'd get people asking to get you drinks, more often than not, I'd pick up a drink when I was picking up my food.
No issue with anyone asking for tips (except the bus drivers from and to the airport - although it was not a problem if you don't tip). Otherwise tips were appreciated when given.
Free wifi is available in the lobby, although it was a little hit and miss when I was there, but I was able to get online using my blackberry 2 out of 4 times that I tried. There is also an internet cafe available.
There is a free nurse available who can call in a doctor if needed. As a precaution we actually saw the doctor as my daughter was a little sick for a few days and he was awesome. Very nice and helpful. However, his services are not cheap so make sure you have cash or a credit card to pay for doctor if you need him as you can't charge it to you room (you get a receipt to claim against insurance).
No complaints. The nightly shows were pretty good. Lots of daily activities and games by the pools and the beach. They have vendors come in every couple of nights. The vendors will say they are only there every two weeks, but they sell the SAME stuff, just different people selling the stuff changes. Even the painting were exactly the same, different "artist" : )
Overall, great trip. No real complaints. The place was clean, the food was good, the people were great and we had a fantastic time.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated in northern Jamaica, on the beachfront. Two 6-storey buildings and one 5-storey building. Surrounded by 90,000 m2 / 107,000 sq. Yards of lush gardens. Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. 10 Km / 6.2 Miles to Ocho Rios. 4 Km / 2.5 Miles from various shops. 105 Km / 65 miles to Montego Bay airport. 600 M / 1,970 ft. From a bus stop. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Visa, Diners ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Hotel Ocho Rios
- Riu Ocho Rios Jamaica
- Riu Ochos Rios
- Rio Ocho Rios
- Club Hotel Riu Ocho Rios
- Rui Ocho Rios
- ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios Jamaica