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Reviewed 5 July 2018 via mobile

We spent an amazing week in a butler villa at Sandals Ochi. We read so many bad reviews & were slightly apprehensive but just went with it since we had it booked. I must say those reviews are unwarranted......

After a long day at the airport we finally landed in Montego Bay. We had pre purchased Club Mobay to bypass customs and once again they were there to please. We checked our bags with the sandals lounge and grabbed a drink. We then followed our luggage to the sandals bus. They switched us to a smaller bus last minute and it was a little cramped but the driver was nice. It is a long drive to the resort from the airport. 1 1/2 hours approx. the driver stopped to allow for a restroom break and then brought us to Ochi. Upon arrival we went to the concierge lounge and waited for them to escort us to our room. We were so tired but soon we were greeted by this bright smiling face, Sashimia! She whisked us away to our suite which was beautiful. People say it’s dated but it’s older style luxury. The Caribbean can’t just up and remodel as easy as we can in the US. The furniture is older but it’s beautiful & well maintained. I have zero complaints on this. Here in the US we pay top dollar to stay in historic hotels with similar furnishings. We loved our room! The bed is quite high off of the ground and I literally had to pull myself up into it but I’m short. Step stools might be good here.

We finished our registration on the iPad and then our butler offered to bring us dinner in our room. I knew I would fall asleep if we waited so we asked to go to a restaurant. She took us to the southern table. The food was delicious! Our server was so sweet & attentive. I wish I remembered her name. She made sure that everything came out quickly as well. Sashimia picked us up & took us back to our room when we were finished. We decided to have a drink in our room and just relax the rest of the evening. We really enjoyed the separate sitting area & wet bar. I do have 2 suggestions for this though..... hand soap or dish soap either at the sink to wash hands and cups if needed. The butler will gladly bring clean cups but we brought our own large yeti cups and needed to wash them often. Also, maybe an ice maker under the counter?? Our butlers were always happy to bring us ice but I felt bad calling them just for ice. We used a lot and having the option to get it ourselves would have been great.

The next morning we had breakfast delivered to our room which was awesome! We also met Natalee our other amazing butler. She never misses a thing. She could have 10 tasks in front of her and still answer the phone cheerfully and be ready to do anything you could possibly need or ask for. She came back after breakfast and took us on a tour.

The resort is huge! If it was not for her, I don’t think we would have known half of what they have to offer. I still don’t think we did even half of it. We decided to check out the pool after our tour but it was very crowded and no place to sit. We ended up walking around for awhile before grabbing a pizza and heading back to our room.

For dinner Natalee took us to the Regency. I ordered fish & my husband ordered Ox tail. Everything was delicious. We then went to the amphitheater for entertainment. We met another couple at dinner who joined us. The staff were amazing there. We had previously been to Royal Caribbean and loved it but here, they actually come to you and offer to bring fresh drinks, they make sure your happy & well taken care of. At RC you were on your own to go find refills while watching entertainment. Maybe it was because this resort is much larger? I’m not sure but I was impressed.

We left the amphitheater and chose to walk back up the hill to our room. When we arrived back to our room Natalee had a towel decorations & flower petals on our bed. She had written us a sweet note and drawn a nice bath for us covered in flower petals. She also brought me a cup of rum cream so I had it for my coffee in the morning. Of course I got a full bottle the next day but she made sure I was taken care of while waiting on my special request. She also had chips, salsa, queso, guacamole and a cheese & cracker plate waiting for us. It’s like she just read our minds and took care of us even when she was off the clock for the day.

The next morning we had to be ready earlier to go in a catamaran cruise to Dunn’s River Falls. We did not order breakfast to be delivered for this reason. It was before our butlers were technically supposed to be on for the day so my husband walked down to grab something for breakfast and bring it up to our room. He said he was trying to balance food & drinks when suddenly Sashimia appeared to drive him up the hill & help with drinks. She drove that cart up the hill while balancing a tray of drinks and did not spill a drop!! Wow!!! She told us what we needed for our excursion and when she would be back to pick us up for it. She was waiting on us exactly on time. We were supposed to call her when we came back for lunch. When we got back we were already there so just ordered lunch ourselves at tapas. Of course everything was great again. We called Sashimia to verify dress code for dinner but told her we would walk back to our room ourselves. We took the hop to the hillside and no sooner got off that bus that she appeared to drive us up the hill! There is nothing that slips by her!

We went to the hibachi grill for dinner and enjoyed it. Our chef was new so she did not put on a big show but the food was good & she did a great job! We also checked out the ocean bar. The Dj was awesome and the playmakers kept us all going. We danced & danced until we were ready to pass out. When we returned to our room we once again had snacks waiting for us. We had also asked for Bloody Mary mix and Sashimia made it special for us.... blaze Fiah... hot! She did not clock out until she made sure our request was fulfilled. Of course we ordered breakfast again delivered to our room. We loved having the availability of breakfast delivered, the semi private pool at our villa & loved the privacy & extra space in our suite.

We also did a couples massage. What an awesome morning this was. We did the same one last year but this time it was the full 60 minutes and the spa was so much nicer than we had previously experienced at RC. I was definitely very happy with the spa services. Definitely try the scents of love couples massage.

I don’t think we had a single meal that we were disappointed with. We only did 2 excursions the catamaran to the falls & the shopping tour. I would not do the shopping tour again. He took us to 2 plazas that were basically the same stuff with prices higher than the gift shop. I wanted to get out into the real shopping areas but these were gated tourist trap shoppes. we did make a few purchases but The tour was like an hour to an hour and a half and we paid $40 to do this... the only other thing that was disappointing of the entire week was the inability to get loungers at the pools or seats at the beach party. It was so over crowded that we had to leave. I would recommend the catamaran booze cruise to the falls 100%! Do it! It’s amazing!

Our butlers repeatedly surprised us or went out of their way to make sure we always had everything we needed or wanted. The guy that stocked the fridge was on it! We asked for extra coke light and he remembered every time. Our housekeepers were on top of making sure our room was always well kept. We had originally planned on our next trip going elsewhere but after meeting so many amazing people we had to rebook to return to Ochi. Our butlers were such
A pleasure to have that they definitely made our vacation special. One night we were so tired and did not want to walk back up the hill after dinner and I had very uncomfortable shoes on. we called Natalee to pick us up. She answered but she was very busy. rather than have us wait she sent someone else to come get us so that we didn’t have to wait on her. She then called to check up on us and make sure we made it back OK. All of these little things add up so much to such an amazing vacation. Obviously our final evening we were pretty sad that we are going to have to leave in the morning and then we met Anjae who absolutely made the best drinks and was so friendly on our way to the reggae night. He is an absolute blessing to Ochi! As we strayed away from the amphitheater he turned us around and made sure we went to reggae night. He even sang along with my husband all the way there.

Reggae night was amazing the entertainment was top-notch and of course super Shelly she has the voice of an angel. I can’t forget to mention Javada either. I don’t even know where the entertainment department would be without him. Also, renaldo he was always there to get you involved in the action. There was Wayne at the bar above the oceans club that told us to come try his special drinks. He also found us at the beach party to make sure we had a Wayne special drink before we left. The hostess at the southern table that always remembered us and offered to help get plates to bring back or make sure we had everything we needed. I know so many other faces stand out but my memory on names is failing me. Sheldon in Valentino’s was our server. He took great care of us. The bar staff at Kelly’s where we sat after dinner just talking to and enjoyed learning about Jamaica outside the resort. I honestly can say we never came into contact with anyone with a bad attitude everyone was always ready to please. Here in the US if you ask someone to do something or to help you and it’s not their job they will tell you it’s not my job, not at Ochi, everyone works together they all took the attitude that that is my job. At one point I asked our butler to help another couple that were upset about something and it wasn’t one of her rooms and she has enough of her own I’m sure. It didn’t matter, she took it upon herself to fix it. Even when the sun goes down and you’re stumbling back to your room there’s always a bunch of people ready and waiting to help you with anything you could need. A ride up the hill, ice, snacks, you name it. It’s very obvious that the people at Ochi love their jobs and it really shows.

As we loaded the bus to leave our last day Javada was there to see everyone off. They made sure that even though you checked out you did not lift a finger because you were still on vacation. As the bus pulled away the man from the front desk stopped us. He wanted to climb aboard and personally thank us all for visiting and say he hopes to see us all soon. I honestly do not know where you could go that you would get that kind of welcome and that kind of departure. Normally when you check out it’s bye I hope you had a great stay. At Ochi they went the extra step to make sure they personally thanked us all and hope to see us return-soon. That is not even sandals standards that must be an OChi thing. The staff at this resort completely make it your home and they treat you like family if you’re not happy at OChi I don’t know where you’re going to be happy at. Thank you for making our vacation so amazing & so memorable. We are counting down the days and though we have a year we will be back...

Date of stay: June 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
2  Thank JG849
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 July 2018

Well well well, I want to apologize in advance for the length of this review, but I am going to intentionally depart from my usual concise review in order to try to really provide you a visceral understanding of this property.
1 of 7 Choosing which city
My wife wanted to celebrate our wedding anniversary in Jamaica, so as usual, I began planning the trip about 8 months in advance. I read and researched 4 cities that seemed to continually be discussed—Kingston, Montego Bay, Negril, and Ocho Rios. After a few weeks of study, I selected Ocho Rios.
2 of 7 Choosing which property
My wife gave the thumbs up to Ocho Rios so then I embarked on the exhaustive task of choosing a property. I must have read well over 500 reviews of various properties in Ocho Rios. Although I concluded early on that each property “pretty-much” provided the same experience with its own unique twist, the one thing that stood out about Sandals was its motto of being “Truly Inclusive”. We travel quite a bit and the only experience that we have had that I considered to be “truly” all-inclusive is a cruise. So I began calling the resort and asking many questions. I am the type of person that asks multiple questions and I think even for myself that I can wear on my own nerves. (my wife emphatically agrees). However, no matter how many times I called and how many questions I asked, whichever person that answered the phone was knowledgeable, precise and most of all pleasant. I must admit that I was reluctant to take the chance, but after again reading more reviews on TripAdvisor, I finally settled on Sandals.
3 of 7 Choosing a Room Type
By this time, I had spent no less than 4 weeks of intense and exhaustive research to bring me to this point of the journey. Just when I thought I was home free, then I learned of the 2 different areas (Beachside and Hillside) as well as traditional rooms versus Butler Village. Oh well, here I go again –off on a 1-week journey as to what room type to choose and whether I wanted poolside or hillside. My wife and kids call me “Mr. Krabs” when it comes to money. I like to think of myself as simply being fiscally responsible. At any rate, Sandals offers rooms for all types of budgets. I knew that we wanted more of the quite approach with access to the action so the choice for a hillside location was rather quick. However, I found that the reviews of the butler village were quite intriguing. So, I asked the wife what she thought-----I know what you are thinking---- so the next day I booked the Butler Village.
4 of 7 Arrival at Sandals Ochio Beach Resort
We arrived at Montego Bay airport and took advantage of Club Mobay----more information in another post --- but simply stated---DO IT! We also visited the Sandals lounge in the airport where Sandals provides transportation both to and from the airport. When we arrived at the resort we were checked in by a well-trained and courteous staff andwe were then introduced to two (2) of Sandals finest butlers and Jamaica’s finest citizens MICHELLE AND SUZY!!! We were in building 50 room #7407. The room was EXQUISITE. We had a semi-private pool with a view straight from the movies. The minifridge was stocked EVERDAY with beverages and there was more than enough liquor on hand. We don’t drink, but thought it was a nice amenity. The bed was super comfy and the bathroom was spacious. Although the room was worth every penny itself, I want to be very clear MICHELLE AND SUZY made the EXPERIENCE of Sandals something that we will NEVER forget. When you read that the butlers provide personal attention, that is EXACTLY what they do. They take care of EVERYTHING. Always smiling, always knowing what we want even BEFORE we ask. I am NOT exaggerating. MICHELLE AND SUZY truly made this anniversary one we will NEVER forget. If you have not figured out what I am saying to you it is this--- THE BUTLER VILLAGE experience is NOT optional!
5 of 7 Excursions
Of course you cannot do a vacation without excursions. My wife informed me that she wanted to scuba dive in Jamaica. Once again, after multiple phone calls with the resort, they arranged for us to not only scuba dive, but we would also obtain our Open water scuba certification. This means that they have PADI certified instructors that guide you through a certified course and at the conclusion you will have a worldwide certification! My wife said she would do it if I did and I said let’s go for it. When we arrived, Michelle took us to the hop station where we were driven to the scuba shop. There we met Captain Winston. It was near quitting time, but he took time to investigate and get us cleared and registered to begin our class the next day. Captain Winston, just like Michelle and Suzy was knowledgeable, patient and willing to assist us in any way. The next day we were introduced to our PADI instructor Semaj----who I respectfully refereed to as Professor Semaj. For the next few days, Semaj would guide me and my wife through the challenges of the scuba certification. He was clear, courteous and very patient as I had to overcome MANY fears with regards to scuba diving. But in the end, he continually worked with me and my wife and he would simply NOT let me quit. Because of his professionalism, attention to detail, knowledge and his high expectations, I am proud to report that BOTH my wife and I are Scuba certified! A HUGE shout-out to ALL the staff at the Scuba Center at Sandal Ocho. One last special thanks to Winston and Semaj. And to Semaj---“Every little thing, gonna be alright ”
6 of 7 Food
Sandals Ocho has too many restaurants to list. From French, to Japanese, to local dishes. Sandals has it ALL. I have been sharing with people that the food and drink access is like being on a cruise ship that is permanently on land. The food is EXCELLENT and you have 24 hour access to food and drinks WOW!!
Final Words 7 of 7
Even though I have written much, there is still sooooo much I left out. The people of Jamaica are pleasant easy going people and ALL the staff that we encountered or saw at Sandals were smiling and/or singing and going over and beyond to ensure that our vacation was one we would NEVER forget---- I would like to say---mission accomplished! Additionally, there are activities, dances, water sports, golfing, games, shows etc. It should come as no surprise that we are in the process of booking a family reunion there! If you are planning a trip to Jamaica ----SANDALS OCHO RIOS IS THE BEST CHOICE. Book butler village and ask for Michelle and Suzy. Also, take a trip to the Scuba Shop and see Winston and Semaj----enough talking for now and as the old Nike slogan said “JUST DO IT” Yeah Mon

Room tip: Choose any room in the Butler Village on Hillside
Date of stay: June 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank Derrick D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 July 2018

We had a fantastic experience at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort. From the time we arrived at the resort to the time we had to leave all staff and facilities were top notch. The food was amazing. I think the beach side of this resort is the way to go. We visited the hillside portion but enjoyed the beautiful beach and clear water.

Date of stay: June 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank rholler2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nadel B, Online Review Coordinator at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 19 July 2018

Hello and thank you for sharing your review of Sandals Ochi! We are beyond thrilled to hear that you had a fantastic experience during your stay with us, as our main goal as hoteliers is to provide our visitors with most amazing and memorable vacation. The service given to our valued guests is an area we put a lot of work and training into as a business, so we are indeed pleased that the hospitality of our resort team contributed to making this stay the success that it was. We thank you for your kind words and look forward to welcoming you back to one of our resorts in the near future!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 July 2018 via mobile

I’ve been a bit slow in writing this review, mainly due to coming to terms with no longer being at this lovely hotel!

We stayed in a Honeymoon Suite on the Hillside - whilst the room was a little dated we loved it, having the pool outside your door was great and we really liked being on the Hillside, near the Rabbit Hole for getting back to the room at the end of the night. We also had the pleasure of having two great butlers - Scott and Shaw (The Crazy Butlers!) made what would have been a good holiday a great one. They were attentive without being too much, got us the amazing coconut shrimp and added some lovely touches to our holiday.

The resort is big, but easy to get around with the shuttle running from Beachside to Hillside every few minutes. If you’ve got a Butler and you’re staying on the Hillside they will also run you around in a golf buggy, and after they’re off duty there’s a jitney to get you around.

The restaurants are all good, but stand outs for us were Soy for shushi and Kelly’s Dockside.

And finally the entertainment....Mama at the Rabbit Hole....do not miss her! Absolutely fantastic. We also really enjoyed The Silver Birds and Reggae Night - both will get you dancing in your seat!

Date of stay: May 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank lovetotravel83UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 July 2018

My in-laws treated all of us (my husband and I, my brother-in-law and his friend, and themselves) to a week at Ochi on the beach side of the resort at the end of June/beginning of July. The shows were great! In particular we loved the steel band and the Broadway night!! The singers were really wonderful! We got one of their names, Super Shelley, she was amazing and also really friendly and approachable! I also loved the male soloist from the Broadway show night too, but didn't catch his name.
We stayed on the beach side, in one of the stand alone houses (called Ocean Palms, four separate hotel rooms per building, each with their own separate balconies) which we really liked; it was very private. This location gave easy access to the sea, but to be honest, the Hop (the sandals van/bus) has rides every 10 minutes to and from both sides of the resort, so it's easy to go back and forth.
My husband and I got a "states of slow" massage that was really relaxing and definitely added to our trip!
The food was good and the staff were very friendly and accommodating! My only warning would be that many of the dinner locations can not provide large group seating, four people max. We were there with 6 people and could only sit together two nights, at Soy (sushi restaurant) and at Kimono (Hibachi restaurant). Both of these locations were great. The hibachi place was very fun and our chef, Christopher, was a real entertainer! We tried to sit together at Tapas, Sky Terrace, and Kelly's Dockside, but they didn't have large enough seating available for us. My favorite dinner location, even with the fact that we couldn't sit together, was Sky Terrace. The surf and turf dinner was perfect and the environment was breathtaking! We got to watch the sun set over the water and it was totally worth it!!

Overall, it was a really great vacation with great food, great service and great views!

Room tip: The Harbour Club, Ginger Lily, and Ocean Palms are on the seaside part of the resort.
Date of stay: June 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Michelle C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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