I visited Negril in the latter part of October 2013 and as always, I did not book anything in advance. I generally have a drink at the Sangster, Montego Bay airport and decide then (having maybe 5 hotels in mind) where I will lodge.
At any rate, after my cocktail, I decided upon the Palms, Negril Resort. I had read mixed reviews and had no idea what to expect.
For one, you can get any legal shuttle which caters to groups to take you to Negril for max $25 USD one-way (R/t $50 USD). The shuttles are located in the airport (Juta is a popular one). The ride to Negril and more specifically, the Palm Resort is very comfy. The shuttles are all air-conditioned.
What to Expect..
The property is garden-styled. There is a palm-tree walk-way which leads to all of the rooms, the beach area, and the main building for check-in/out. I found the property to be NOT well-lit. Very dark, especially for lone traveler. The rooms are NOT well-maintained. The linens need to be changed. The pillows and spreads were an OFF-WHITE color, evidence of years of use. I also didn't like the wood-throughout feel. The wood had cracks in the window panes that I felt lizards could easily crawl through. Ground level rooms all have a nice garden-style patio with tables and chairs for lounging, reading, having breakfast etc.
Ahhh the good stuff..
The beach, the sunset, the drinks...ALL AMAZING. This resort is SAVED by their outdoor lounge area by the beach (which is beautifully decorated), their super-friendly bartender, and water-sports staff, and the Negril sunshine, sunset, white sands, and the warmth of the Caribbean sea.
I forgot to mention, the property is guarded/gated 24 hours. Safety was NOT an issue.
If it were for the rooms and front desk staff, I would never return.
If your cellular phone is unlocked, you can go into town, a 5 minute taxi ride and purchase a Digicel SIM card with an international plan. (Digicel is preferred over the other carriers because it's the most economical and the service is good). My personal go-to however, is to use Wi-Fi. I mean why not? With Wi-Fi I can make calls, video calls even. On the property, Wi-Fi is poorer in some rooms. Beware! I changed rooms twice. Rooms closest to the main point of check-in/out and those near the restaurant get the best service. In the other rooms, the Wi-Fi is spotty.
As you know, the front desk staff can sometimes make or break a stay... For the most part, I only saw two agents on my very brief stay. The woman I checked in with was not very friendly. She would not honor an Expedia rate so I simply pulled out my trusty cell-phone, logged on to Expedia and booked at a much lower rate right in front of her. When I returned in two days to extend my stay by a day or two, she was hesitant about extending the Expedia rate that I was ALREADY staying on. Having worked in the hotel industry, it's an obvious no-brainer to extend under such circumstances. Not to mention, her colleague had already okayed it the day before. I kind of just ruled my experience with that particular agent as perhaps she just had a chip on her shoulder. Didn't bother me any because I STILL got the Expedia rate at $70 USD cheaper.
This resort is centrally located on the Negril strip. It's a short walk to Maragaritaville and just about everything else. Just across the street, a block away is a mini-super market. There is also a restaurant next door and one across the street. (Let's just say, your food options are VERY close by). The mini-mart has everything from juice to bread to pain killers, shampoo, soap, u name it!
6 words to sum my experience up: Can I get a do-over? :-) Yes, I enjoyed it that much. As previously stated, the rooms and facilities aren't up-to-date and could use some tender love and care but the location, made up for it all.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Negril Palms Hotel is an intimate, tropical hideaway perfect for couples, families and singles, and centrally located on the world famous 7 mile beach in Negril. Negril Palms is just a short walking distance from all of Negril's well known beach attractions and entertainment hot-spots. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- The Palms Hotel Negril
- Palms Hotel Negril