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“Not a 5 Stars Resort”

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Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #4 of 14 Hotels in Runaway Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Las Vegas, Nevada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Not a 5 Stars Resort”
Reviewed 1 June 2014

It's a joke and not a 5 stars hotel, not even close. Probably 3.5 stars, no more than that.
The owners and managers of this place should be ashamed of themselves to call it a 5 star hotel. I would be less irritated if it honestly called itself a 3.5 stars. It seems like they're trying to be 5 stars, but going about it the wrong way. They are trying to cut costs in all aspects, and as a result, everything from service to food suffered. Please, charge more if you have to, but make sure you are able to provide a better experience with better service, better food, etc....!
I read a lot of the reviews before booking it, and I knew that it's not as luxurious a place as they advertised it to be, but I really hoped for the better as there were so many great reviews.
Food:
Almost everyone said it had some tasty food! Forget it! We were not satisfied with any of their meals with maybe one exception. The buffets of Luxury Bahia and Grand Bahia are the same thing! I went especially to check the various food in the buffets of both places, and the luxury buffet had just 1 extra type of cheese, 1 different soup, smoked salmon, and mangos. The rest is all the same! What's the point of even keeping that place open?!
Whoever cooks this food just wants to make it fast and doesn't care about taste! I eat much better food at home than here! The food is fast food quality, or the type you find in some mall food courts! I hoped to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables in Jamaica... Not in this hotel! Watermelons have no taste. Honey dew melons were ok, mangos and oranges are good. We had to buy fruits outside the hotel, which were much better, real Jamaican fruits. Picasso restaurant had some decent tasting food from all. Japanese restaurant had the worst service ever! It took 45 minutes to get miso soup! 2 waitresses for 20 tables!
We were not allowed to order 1 extra spring roll after ordering 4 pieces of sushi. Really?! Is it so big of a deal in an all inclusive hotel to serve 1 extra spring roll? Ridiculous!
Every day it's the same food here, doesn't matter what international cuisine they aim to be. I can't wait to get back home and finally eat something tasty! This food will keep you alive, and prevent you from starving to death but that's about it... The Ocean side snack bar has even worse tasting food, just jerk chicken is good.

Every food place worked by particular timing. We felt all 8 days that we had to run by their time and couldn't really enjoy our pace of the day. We had to run to breakfast by 10am, then lunch time is 1-3pm. So if you sleep in and miss breakfast... Done! You will starve till 1pm, or order the room service which had the smallest menu ever, and there was not much to pick.
Oh, the snack ocean bar opens at 12 and closes at 5 I believe , but I couldn't eat that food! So for us there was no food in the resort from 10am to 1pm, and from 3pm to 6pm, which is really annoying! It seemed we had no time to relax on the beach because we always had to check the time and not to be late for buffet! Awful! Other 5 star resorts have maximum of 30 minutes break in between breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner. Really depressing, besides being unsatisfied with food, we had to run by hotel time to get it!
I don't want to check the time on vacation, I want to relax and eat any time I want, not when they want me to eat!
Service:
The service here is not 5 star either. Everyone is nice if you ask them, but they don't rush to be thoughtful themselves and spoil you like in real 5 stars resort. The servers are overworked, too few to keep up with all their duties. It might be the fault of managers who try to cut the cost on the stuff. First day we left some tips for our waitress on the table of the buffet, and some other guy (in black&grey vest) who was not a waiter just stole the tips from the table and ran away! What kind of people work there????

The other incredibly bad thing is their towel system! When we checked in, they gave us 2 towels, which we were supposed to carry around with us to a pool area or a beach. To get new towels you had to bring these 2 towelsto the lobby!!!! So now besides running by hotel time to be able to eat, we carry everywhere these towels!!!! Why can't we just get them outside the pool area or on the beach and leave them there at the end of the day?! I saw a lot of people carry towels back to rooms and dry them on the balcony. Why do you want to reuse the towels that are all in sweat after outside heat and probably have a layer of sunscreen on it?

The "Do not disturb sign" on the rooms' doors is a joke too!
It's so loose that every time flys away from the door. So if you put the sign and you want some privacy, you probably won't get it. If you put the sign about cleaning - you never know either! All those signs that flew away and were on the floor, picked up by smbd and put on your door. So you never know what's outside your door and if you get housekeeping services when you want them.
Is it that hard to make new door signs for the hotel to resolve this issue?
I'm sure everyone is aware of it because those signs are on the floor every day!

One good thing about this place is a beach! Quiet ocean, almost no waves, very shallow water for around 100 meters, beautiful nature and trees around. Actually the landscape design all over the resort is beautiful!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Indigo777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Guest Relations Manager at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 5 June 2014
Dear user of Trip Advisor,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with us ,however It is always concerning when guests are not completely satisfied with some of our facilities, however we really appreciate this feedback that represents an opportunity to improve our services, products and human resources.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch with us for any further assistance or requirements for you next visit to our Resort always your home in Jamaica.

Yours faithfully,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 May 2014

excellent the food were good, the beaches were safe, the staff were very friendly.the activies were good,the service were excellent. i already told some of my friends about luxury bahia. they said they want to experience it also. i will be returning again

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Molly R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 31 May 2014
Dear Molly,

Yours satisfaction is our best reward.
Thank you for letting us know how much you enjoyed our services and facilities.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for further assistance for your next visit at our wonderful Resort, Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection here in Jamaica.

Always at your disposal,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto
Level 6 Contributor
119 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 May 2014

Check in was good. Room was nice and clean, spacious, great balcony. Hotel staff were super friendly, ya mon! Buffets were alright, a la carte were decent. Pools were nice, grounds were beautiful, beach was alright. Overall a solid place to stay. Value was o.k. Family and couples mostly. I'd recommend it. About 1 hour from air port.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LexLuger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 31 May 2014
Dear guest,

It was a pleasure for us to serve you and your family at our Resort Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection, the best family and couples Resort in Jamaica.

Always at your disposal,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bangor north wales
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 May 2014

This is our third time to the gbp yet again loraine broderick has excelled herself again nothing. Is to much trouble she always goes the extra mile we are here for two weeks staying at the don pablo the rooms are great lovely quiet dinning options

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
7 Thank glenys1949
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Director de Relaciones con Clientes at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 31 May 2014
Dear guest,

On behalf of our Team members, especially Mrs. Broderick we would like to thank you for posting your kind review and of course, we will extend to them your congratulation.

Thank you so much for vacationing with us at Our Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection, the most luxurious experience at the Caribbean.

Yours faithfully,

Helena Gomez

Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montgomery
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 May 2014

This is a very nice resort, I would recommend to anyone that stays in this area. We stayed on the Don Pablo Collection (adult) side of the hotel. Has private check-in and out, and butler service when needed. The Don Pablo Collection restaurants were very nice and that you didn't have to fight the bigger crowds, the food was also good (not saying the other side was bad).
We did have a problem with our room, we requested a king bed and got 2 doubles. We were not able to get a king in the Don Pablo Collection area for 2 days, so we adopt for a king room on the family side of the hotel but still had all the benefits of Don Pablo Collection side. The room was just as nice except for a smaller bathroom, but the view was better (even trade). Other guest had the same problem with getting king beds upon check-in. Seems to be an ongoing problem.
The resort staff are friendly and will try to do any thing in their power to keep you happy. The pool is very, but the waitress at the pool are a little lazy. They didn't seem to care if they served the guests or not, spent a lot of time at bar area, but they were friendly when they did make it around to you.
The one thing I also noticed is the lack of outlets in the rooms (bring a power strip) for electronics. The ceiling fan needed a longer chain to adjust the speed, and the mini fridge for cokes and stuff never got cold.
Overall the resort was very nice, Hotel, staff, and food 4.5 - 5 stars. Those minor things kept me from giving it a 5 star rating!

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Larry H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Guest Relations Manager at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Dear Larry,

On behalf of our General Manager and all Team Members at Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection , we thank you for your valuable comments and we hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you again at our Resort, the most luxurious experience here in Jamaica .

Yours faithfully,

Helena Gomez

Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Belfast
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 May 2014 via mobile

We stayed at the end of April/ start of May. Due to a flight delay we ended up arriving in the middle of the night and missed out on the private checkin. Because of this we also didn't realise until the end of the holiday the extras you were untitled too, make sure you ask for rum or vodka in your room, we didn't know you got 3 free bottles with your room so make the most of it. We didn't make use of the butler service as much as we should have.

When we arrived we were given a room on the ground floor in block 24 although the room was gorgeous and new, we wanted a higher floor and were able to move the next day to the 6th floor in block 23, the room wasn't as nice as in block 24 but the view was gorgeous, we did have a number of issues with leaks and the door not locking but these were fixed quickly. The room was cleaned well everyday, though getting the fridge filled was another issue, we found you got a lot more on days you tipped, which shouldn't be the case.

As for the food, we loved going to the restaurants every night, the don pablo was definitely our favourite followed by the Teppenaki restaurant. The Grill would have been nice if it wasn't so hot!! Don't bother with the dolce vita.

We spend a lot of time in the don pablo lounge due to premium drinks and wifi, the staff were lovely there.

If you are into day trips dunns waterfall is well worth going to, we also went to port Antonio and the blue lagoon including rafting, the was a good trip but 3 hours there and back on the bus and the raft guys really harassed you for a tip! Ricks cafe was also a good trip though we didn't realise they also took you shopping.

All in all this was a great hotel if we went back we would consider a week here and a week in Negril.

Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
7 Thank AFilAlex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Guest Relations Manager at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 25 May 2014
Dear guest,

It will be a pleasure for us to host you once again.

Thank you so much for your comments and please do not hesitate to get in touch with us for further information nor assistance for your next visit in the near future.

Yours faithfully,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Halifax, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 May 2014

Just returned from a lovely vacation in beautiful Jamaica. Here is the real deal about the Luxury Don Pablo Collection.

Traveling tips:

1. Use the arrival and departure services (Mobay), you by pass the long lines. Trust me it was worth the $60 CAD for two people, round trip. You there is a separate lounge to wait in until your taxi and or flight arrives. Plus unlimited food and drinks. By far the best bang for your buck.

2. Tip people. The average Jamaican makes about $45 a week. I brought $100.00 extra just to tip people for the week.

3. Get out a visit the locals. Support local. It was so rewarding to visit a school and provide them with school supplies. Go to your local dollar store grab a few things and give back when you get to Jamaica. So worth it.

4. Use the safe. I heard tons of people losing or misplacing items from their room. Make sure your safe works right when you get into the room. If not, contact the butler service and they will be happy to assist. Fortunately, that never happened to us because we used the safe. Remember, "no problems, just situations".

5. Don Pablo Restaurant is a treat in itself, if you can book it more than once. DO IT!

6. The beautiful ladies in the lobby will pressure you into coming to a session. They will discuss 'time share' information. Don't feel you have to attend, just say no if you don't want to. They also give you a bracelet, to show that someone has already spoken to you, so you don't get hound again.

7. The Local Market, in Ocho Rios, be weary of the constant "in-your-face-selling". It can be a bit overwhelming at first. If you don't want anything just say no; straight up. Like I said early there is a fair amount of low income people in Jamaica; so everyone is on their hustle game.

8. Another big thing, don't flash your money around! Not saying Jamaica is crime central, it is just a good travel tip all around.

9. Rasta's in the water. There are Rasta's on a boat in the water. They are watched heavily by the resort security. But they are trying to sell you that "herbal medicine" among other things. It's best to steer clear, if you like that "herbal medicine" go on the "ZION" tour bus, the Bob Marley tour. You can smoke it legally there.

About the Luxury Don Pablo

Each end of the resort there is the Luxury Don Pablo section. Beautiful rooms, service was great. Remember they are not on your time but on Jamaican time. You'll hear this a lot, "no problems, just situations". Don't freak out, they will reach you eventually.

When you first arrive you will check in, in a different section away from the lobby. The butler will take you bags and bring them straight to your room. With the Luxury Don Pablo experience they plan out your dining schedule for the week. Feel free to call and change things if need be. They'll explain all that once you arrive. Oh, you also have your own lounge away from the rest of the people on the resort.

Beaches were great, you have your own lounging section on the beach. It is about a 5-10 minute walk depending which end of the resort you are at. As well you have your own lounging section away from the rest of the resort beside the pool.

They stock your fridge everyday, there is live entertainment, bands, and acts every night. There is a nightclub that plays a variety of music. The people working on the resort are very hospitable, fun and really want you to enjoy your stay.

There is a Jerk chicken station, so good. They have signature drinks all week that are super tasty. Bring a bubba keg if you have one, or purchase one there. They keep your drink cooler longer.

Hydrate, hydrate.

Relax, and enjoy.

A trip of a lifetime, if you go to Jamaica you might as well do it big in the Luxury Bahia Principle Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
21 Thank Moe O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Customer Servic... B, Guest Relations Manager at Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection, responded to this review, 25 May 2014
Dear guest,

We really appreciate your time to let us know your experience at our Luxury Resort here in Runaway Bay.

Thank you for vacationing with us and see you in the near future.

Yours sincerely,

Helena Gomez
Luxury Runaway Bay Bahia Principe Don Pablo Collection
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection

Property: Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection
Address: Salt Coopers, Runaway Bay, Jamaica
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Jamaica > Saint Ann Parish > Runaway Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Runaway Bay
#3 Luxury Hotel in Runaway Bay
#3 Family Hotel in Runaway Bay
#3 Spa Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Runaway Bay
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Runaway Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection 4.5*
Number of rooms: 525
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 3 lake-style pools 3 Jacuzzis Large sun terrace with gardens, sun umbrellas and loungers Pool and beach towel service BAHIA SPA (20% discount on some treatments) Sports facilities: gym, 2 tennis courts, volleyball court, football pitch Water activity centre Motorised sports (additional charge) Entertainment amphitheatre Wedding gazebo WiFi access in the lobby (free) and in rooms (additional charge) 2 main restaurants 5 speciality restaurants 5 Bars 1 Snack bar Exclusive terrace bar serving Premium drinks Private check-in/out Late check-out subject to availability 18 hole golf course. Pueblo Principe: stores, live music, shows, bars and disco. Rooms 70 Deluxe Junior Suites Room facilities: Four poster king size bed or 2 full size beds Pillowtop mattresses Air conditioning Ceiling fan Direct phone line (additional charge for external calls) Sitting are with sofa Balcony or terrace with sea view Fully-equipped bathroom with separate shower, hydromassage bath tub, wash basin, magnifying mirror and hair dryer Bathro be and slippers Don Pablo Collection amenities Radio alarm clock with iPod docking station Flat screen satellite TV Coffee-making facilities Mini-bar Ironing set Beach towels in rooms 24 hour room service Butler service in rooms (available on request) Evening turndown service Pillow menu Safe (no additional charge) Internet and international newspapers and magazines in the Club House WiFi (no additional charge 24H) Aroma menu Bahia 'au Naturel' (over 18s only): The hotel has a nudist bathing area apart from the other areas ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Luxury Bahia Principe Runaway Bay Don Pablo Collection Jamaica, Caribbean

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