Sunset Jamaica Grande Resort
Travel Blogs from Ocho Rios
... before and said the food is really good so we decided to have lunch there. We both had fried fish and she was right, it was tasty and the scenery was to die for since we sat right at the ocean's edge to eat. After a couple hours on the road we reached Ochi and found the hotel. It looked pretty nice from outside and it was beachfront. I was hoping for a seaview room since I noticed the giant cruiseship docked right in front of the beachfront ...
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TravelPod Member ReviewsSunset Jamaica Grande Resort Ocho Rios
This was a beautiful resort, close to town and the market, as well as Dolphin Cove, Dunns River Falls, and the bobsled attractions. Friendly staff, clean rooms, beautiful pools, and SWEET waterslide!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Sunset Jamaica Grande Resort Ocho Rios
We just returned yesterday from the Jamaica Grande. The construction is definitely a problem. The area surrounding the pool is still cement and hard on the feet, the waterfalls is not working at this present time, the construction starts at 6:00 am seven days a week, the make shift lobby on the lower level is much to be desired of, if you have children change your hotel because the children's activities are contained to a hotel room and the casino is not operating. Get the management to change your hotel to the Jamaica Grande in Monteago Bay.
Don't go there....!
We have just returned from the SJG!!!,we were there 16-30 june,we come from holland so forgive me my typing is not always ok,but for those who also have booked a vacation there please don't go there....! there is still a lot of construction going on,and the noise is very very loud! from 8 in the morning untill 10 in the evening there is noise...!we swiched rooms 3 times,first we did not get a room with oceanview,then we got a room above the construction side, en then we had to move again because are shower wasn't ok,so the next day we complained by the hostess and she said we could go to another hotel,so we went to SUNSET BEACH AND SPA in montego bay but they were building a waterpark there.....and again a lot of noise next to our room so we complained again with our hostess and went to the HOLIDAY INN SUNSPREE in montego bay instead and that was ok...but you can save yourself a lot off trouble and go to another hotel,also the watersports are not available,only the italian(a la carte) and the main restaurant (buffet) was open,there were no shops ,no atm,no jacuzzi....the service from the staff was very good,they are doing they're best to plaese you...anyway we think that this hotel should not be open yet,and we think the construction will not be ready before november/december!...I hope you see this as a warning and don't believe wath the TA is telling you!!! they told us that everything was ready and open,only some finishing touch and the smell of fresh paint...but jamaica is a very beautiful island so have a nice holiday and have fun!!
Need to close for construction repairs
It was my first visit to Jamaica and the horrible experience will keep my family and I away for years to come. This hotel should be closed while they continue with their construction and refurbishment. Our vacation was in mid June 05 for reference in case you're wondering what the timeline is. We arrived to the hotel late at night and was checked in to a room where the door did not work, the room was filthy and in bad condition, everything in the room was wet, and there were electrical wires exposed all over the room. We requested a room change which took a full day and the whole time we had to deal with an unqualified, disrespectful front desk staff. The rest of the hotel staff was very pleasant to deal with though.
The hotel only had one of the five advertised restaurants open, there were no water-sport activity for adult or kids, the water slide could not be found, the pool surface gave all the kids abrasions under there toes and the onsite hotel nurse was not in her room when we first looked for her. The buffet ran out of food the first day we were there and the bar kept running out of different bottles of drinks constantly.
The tennis courts were out of service and the cable went down for a whole day. There were construction happening around us all day and the banging of nails and constant ringing of the jackhammer made it very noisy. We weren't the only ones complaining because everyone we met was having a bad experience. During dinner one night, the electricity went off and the hotel generator (if they had one) could not even power the emergency lights. Of the five reviews posted on this site only one had anything good to say. Hint hint. They had a treasure hunt with prizes of a free glass of orange juice, a tropical drink, a splash in the pool, a half of a Bob Marley song, a line of local slang, and a hotel t-shirt. This is an all inclusive hotel where everything except the t-shirt was already included. Needless to say, only the guy who won the t-shirt enjoyed his prize. The two activities they did have were air hockey and a table tennis board. Unfortunately the hotel only had one table tennis ball and when it was accidentally stepped on, that was the end of the table tennis game. If I could give this hotel a rating of zero out of a hundred I would but the lowest rating on this site is one out of five.
Wait until it is finished
I stayed at the Sunset Jamaica Grande from June 17-25, 2005. Though it is open, the hotel is still under renovation and major construction. I'd estimate that it will not be ready for another couple of months. Every morning we were awakened at 6 a.m. by jackhammers, grinders, hammering, and the sounds of heavy machinery. During the weeks the sound of hammering continued through the night (yes, until 2 or 3 am). Two pools were open, as was the swim-up bar.
Buffet food was fairly bland, usually two or three meat choices, some sort of potato or rice, salads, pasta, and decent desserts (compared to a Las Vegas or cruise ship buffet the Grande doesn't even rate). The third day I was there they did open a beachside grill for burgers, dogs, fish and chips, and jerk chicken. The Italian restaurant was very good though.
The grand lobby was still under construction. As of this writing there are no shops open. Any shopping will require a trip off of the hotel grounds, but there are many shops within easy walking distance. I had to trek into town to buy itch relieving cream (I got a few mosquito bites).
The disco was open, but seemed pretty quiet because there weren't many guests at this point in time. There was live music on the patio each evening, and during the day it appeared there was a roster of activities for both adults and children. If you are planning a family vacation here, definitely wait until it is fully finished, as there seemed to be few activities for kids, but after the renovation there will be a water park with slides and a playground. It will be a great family atmosphere, but at this time none of that is done. Several people who had stayed at this hotel in the past were disappointed that the children's activities were not as abundant than in the past.
I've stayed at this hotel in the past, it has always been wonderful. When the construction and remodeling is done it will be better than before. I would advise though that anyone with a vacation scheduled prior to August or September 2005 keep checking the forums to see if anyone has returned from a fully functioning hotel. Until then, perhaps you should have an alternative hotel in mind just in case. Throughout my stay many people were upset and checked out early because their travel agent or the hotel had misled them into believing the hotel's renovations were closer to being completed.
I've given the hotel an "OK" rating because I had read the message boards and was ready to make the best of the problems I had read about (this stay at the Jamaica Grande was at no cost to myself, so I felt I really couldn't complain too much). If I had been paying a large amount of money to stay there I would have rated this experience "terrible".
Had a great time at Jamaica Grande
I stayed at the Sunset Jamaica Grande Resort from June 16-21st...In my opinion, although not fully completed, it was well above average in all areas. I did expect to have five restaurants open, but the buffet and the italian restaurant was good enough for me. The food was awesome! Snacks were available until 3am every day..this included hamburgers, hot dogs and finger foods. The rooms were very clean and the service was impecable. We felt guilty having drinks around the pools, because as soon as we'd put our empty glasses down, the employees would take them away...leaving us feeling like we weren't allowed to drink around the pool. They ensured us that it was "aright man"! The kids club did have activities to include swimming, bug hunting, art, shell hunting and others that I don't remember. There are three bars that are close to the pools...one being the swim up bar and the other two are just a hop away from the pools. The activities staff has a number of pool activities that goes on throughout the day. At this resort you are waited on hand and foot, which was totally AWESOME for us guests, but very hard on the employees....they are all very hard workers. The disco was fun..it is opened every night...the only complaint I have about the disco was that they needed to play more island music. The beach area seemed big enough to us, and we were able to walk a good ways out into the ocean to swim. When everything is completed...this will be one of the top resorts in all of Jamaica.....I'm already planning on attending again next summer!
24 hours at the Grande
They are not ready to open for guest yet. We arrived to find the light construction was jack hammers that started around 6:30 am. The buffet was a very small selection. Only one restaurant open and you had to make reservations for it. Our room had new bed covers and paint. The sliding door however would not close at the top only the bottom. The fire sprinkler head was not fully attached. I do not know if it was attached enough to work. I found no watersports or entertainment. The only activites we aould find where a ping pong table and a air hockey small table close to the beach bar. There was a strong paint and burning smell for the whole time we where their. They seem to start an area and leave it before it is complete. I think this might be a great place to try and visist a year from now.
Not a resort yet
With almost nothing being completed at this hotel, it was like staying at a Holiday Inn with a Holiday Inn buffet (only buffet open, rest of the time it is premade hamburgers and hotdogs). Just comparing, no slight to Holiday Inn. But of course, these were not Holiday Inn prices and with a Holiday Inn you know exactly what you are getting. The service was the one thing that keeps this hotel from being a total flop at this time. The rooms are very clean but do not look completely new. The all inclusive "activities" you can participate in consisted of pools - one with a swim up bar which was open, listening to live music at night, riding a bike in the gym or getting hair braided (expensive!) in the spa. We didn't see any organized activity for kids. We don't think there were water sposrts. We did not go to the disco, but we think it was open. If you are expecting to be at a high end resort when you go here, this is not a high end resort yet. It may well be in the future but not a complete one for several months from the looks of it. There is some type of construction going on almost all the time, yet it seems to be slow progress from hearing local comments. Nothing looks quite finished. Sure, you can make the best of it anywhere you go on vacation, but really, then why bother paying premium if you have try that hard? We were foolish to refuse to read the writing on the wall regarding what condition this hotel was in. Suggest booking elsewhere if you can until this hotel gets it a little more together. If you can't switch or are still intent on going soon, then be realistic about what to expect when you get there and resolve to book yourself on various tours, and there are many in the area which will ultimately make your trip very enjoyable.
Will be wonderful...when finished!
My boyfriend and I stayed there from June 12-18, 2005. When we booked the trip I had been under the impression that the hotel would be fully operational by March 2005, but it clearly wasn't by the time we arrived. There was not much open when we were there and the construction being done made the trip not seem like a vacation. The employees at the hotel said they were hoping for it to be done in September, but realistically it probably will be completely done closer to January. Even the parts that were open were not done (ex: the walkways around the pools were rough and not finished, the rooms still needed patching of holes in the walls, and the list goes on). I was not impressed with the beach at all! There were machines driving up and down the beach and workers working. We could see that when the resort is fully open there is a huge beach, but we were restricted to a small part of a little inlet, not the actual ocean. I found the staff friendly and got to know quite a few of them. The buffet is wonderful and yes it often does have the same food, but they definitely introduce new foods each night. And there is only one restaurant, where as we thought we'd have five to choose from. The amenities we paid for were simply not available to us. When we asked for snorkeling gear, nope not available and the same goes for everything we asked for. This place will be great, but I wouldn't plan on attending this resort until the year 2005 is over.
One last thing..bring earplugs because the music at night is unbearably loud. The noise might be different depending on where your room is (ours was facing the ocean), but I couldn't stand it!
Not up to standards
I just returned from the Sunset Jamaica Grande (formerly known as the Renaissance Jamaica Grande). I was there from Jun 13-16. The hotel is still under renovations so the noise was awful. We woke up to loud noises in the mornings because of the construction. The front desk staff was rude as were the guest service people. The hotel has hired alot of people that have never held these types of positions before so you can imagine. The dining room staff was delightful. There is only one a la carte restaurant open. The food on buffet was very repititious. After the first day I was tired of the same foods. The entertainment nightly was the same band with the same vocalist so the songs were repeated nightly. Definitely not the place to book if you are looking for relaxation. Once the resort is complete it may be okay, but will definitely be crowded because they have cut out alot of the beach area.
Rennaisance Grande was Wonderful!
We visited Ocho Rios for our Honeymoon. Mid November.
the hotel was wonderful
Food was great-much to choose from
The drinks were plentiful
Staff was great!
I would definatley recommend! For an overseas vacation the resort was definatley a 5 star. Though for Stateside I would rate a 4.
WONDERFUL! I will never forget my Honeymoon!