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Royalton White Sands Resort
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3,169 - 3,174 of 6,046 reviews
Reviewed 14 January 2016 via mobile

Me and my partner went here for a holiday. We've always wanted to go to Jamaica and when we arrived we knew we'd made the right choice! We upgraded to the diamond package and the service was fantastic! Our butler was called Eric and he was absolutely fantastic, thank you Eric you're a valuable member of the team.

Stayed: November 2015, travelled as a couple
8  Thank jbott1986
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrico P, General Manager at Royalton White Sands Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2016

Dear jbott1986,

We loved hearing from you and thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with us.

It was certainly a pleasure hosting you and we are excited to know that we were able to meet your expectations and was also quite pleasantly surprised.
Our staff takes great pride in ensuring that all our guests are fully satisfied and have a flawless experience while staying with us. "indeed Eric is the best'

We hope you will visit us again soon! Thanks for choosing the Royalton White Sands.

Best Regards,

Enrico Pezzoli
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 January 2016

We spent 2 glorious weeks at this hotel and really enjoyed it. We upgraded to a swim-up room when we arrived and it was worth every single penny, it was fantastic being able to roll out of bed straight into our own lazy river pool right outside the door. it was so hot I rarely left the pool except to eat - which was a bit of an issue.

With several a la carte restaurants available as well as the 'universal' buffet restaurant you'd expect to be spoilt for choice with the food. Unfortunately in many cases the food was sub standard, certainly not 5 star level; I am not a picky eater but my partner is a former chef so he finds it very difficult to overlook basic hygiene issues such as fingerprints on the cutlery or glassware and table crumbs left over from the previous diner, so he was put off a lot. The food in the a la carte restaurants seemed to be pre-prepared as it was brought out merely minutes after you had ordered; for some food such as soup, that's fine, but some things should be freshly cooked and it's impossible to cook a medium-well done steak in 3 minutes, no matter how good a chef you are!

There was certainly plenty of choice at the main buffet but the food tended to be lukewarm at best and choices seemed to favour a young American palette (eg chicken nuggets, hot dogs etc); we ate mostly from the salad bar which was fantastic and fresh, or the pasta counter where the sauces etc were made in front of you. The Japanese Tepanyaki restaurant was also a great experience, food created right in front of you by a show chef using very clever techniques. Be aware though, you don't get a choice of food, you take what they have cooked and there is an expectation of a very large tip at the end of this. It was delicious though.

The pool area was large and very clean, there is only one pool but plenty of sun beds were available and staff were always on hand to help you find one if you couldn't. They had a policy of moving towels away if they were left for longer than 3 hours,although they didn't always enforce that policy. We didn't sit by the main pool because we had our own swim up, but we were close enough to see and hear the entertainment, which was very varied and lively - although 99% of the music is reggae/Bob Marley so you definitely need to be a fan!

Our upgrade included membership of the Diamond Club and I would definitely recommend this. You get access to the exclusive DC lounge which, although not very large, is the only part of the hotel with full air conditioning therefore a great relief if you're feeling over-heated! They have a self-serve bar in the DC lounge with premium drinks and freshly made snacks always available; there is also wifi and access to a PC if you need it. Staff in the DC lounge are amazingly friendly, very smiley and welcoming; just be aware that this is not always genuine.

We found the staff initially to be lovely and friendly, but we noticed that people who didn't tip well or regularly began to get treated differently. We've always been good tippers for good service, so we were fine but we did witness a few people being ignored at the bars (especially the sports bar) while others who were waving dollar bills were served immediately. The sports bar and the area outside was where most of the nightlife happened; some of the shows were really good, some a bit basic, but we enjoyed most of them. It does get very, very busy at night though, there aren't enough seats for everyone to watch the show so it's best to get there early if you can. Also, they have a food menu in the sports bar, we recommend the Poutine! Basically it's just chips and cheese with bacon and gravy but it's fantastic, and we ate there more than we ate in the restaurants! The ice cream parlour is also great for a cool evening snack, although they sometimes ran out of ice cream!

The beach was lovely, very clean and very busy, with a great breeze to keep you cool. Diamond Club had their own upgraded part of the beach which was quieter and had bigger/better sunbeds in it, but we didn't really use the beach much. There is a problem with sand flies though; turned out my partner was allergic to the bites and unfortunately nobody (from the rep to the onsite pharmacist) could give him anything to treat the multiple bites he received and they become swollen and infected; he still has the scars! They even get into the rooms, so try to keep your door shut when you're out on the balcony/terrace.

They have photographers around always looking for business but they don't harrass you if you're not interested. We got a lovely picture taken on our second last night and it cost $10 for one print - it was a nice photo though, so we took it. They won't give it to you electronically but you can get multiple prints for a price. There is also a bit of a 'hard sell' for timeshare but they do take no for an answer - eventually!

Overall we really enjoyed the holiday but the poor standard of food and the horrendous sand flies would put us off going back. But having a swim up room has set a new standard for us and is now a must-have! It does add another £500-£1000 to the holiday cost but it's well worth it.

Room Tip: The Diamond Club swim up rooms are amazing
  • Stayed: February 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
3  Thank mizliz_uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrico P, General Manager at Royalton White Sands Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2016

Dear mizliz_uk,

We are happy to know you chose to spend your holidays with us here in Jamaica , at the Royalton White Sands.
I appreciate your lovely comments on the property as well as the team members. Our staff are all genuinely warm and welcoming people . I will be sure to share your feedback with them. We always want to ensure that our guests are happy and fully satisfied while staying with us. We are constantly making improvements to our services, one such one being our dining services and food .
Thank you for sharing your feedback.
It was a pleasure hosting you and thank you for choosing Royalton White Sands.

Best Regards,

Enrico Pezzoli
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 January 2016

Visited as a couple
main impression is modern and clean. It is clearly obvious that the staff are well trained and appear genuine and happy to be at this beautiful hotel.
It is not too big but is sectioned out so that the children sections i.e. pools and slides are far enough away from the adults section to allow you to enjoy your holiday
We has no issues with the food, the restaurants were lovely and even if there was a wait to be served they would constantly top your drinks up and make you feel welcome
I only wished there was an adult only drinks section for the evening time however they are currently building an adult only hotel next door which should solve this problem
We upgraded to the Diamond club without a room upgrade due to lack of availability and the beach was ok with cabana's on and a private bar however due to the hotel being built behind this it some what spoiled the silence and view !
I would definitely upgrade to the diamond club rooms if we visited again as they looked bigger and set out closer to the beach. Our room was rather noisy at night as under the entertainment section.If you stay out late this won't be a problem
The overall positives for this resort are the staff who go above and beyond to make your stay perfect always smiling and the adult pool area is fun during the day
I would return to try the new hotel as a couple
If you are visiting before this is finished you need to be prepared that the building work can be seen and heard. It is unsightly however this is not the hotels fault and therefore I would recommend it.

Room Tip: while work is on ask to be on the left side of the pool to avoid a bad view
  • Stayed: January 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank whittakerclan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrico P, General Manager at Royalton White Sands Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2016

Dear whittakerclan,

Thank you so much for sharing your experience with us. It was such a pleasure hearing from you.

We are very delighted to know that you found our resort to be excellent in every way and we thank you very much for selecting our resort to spend such a joyous occasion with us .
Our staff are all amazing and I will be sure to share your review so they can know how much they contributed to your stay being a lovely one.

We enjoyed hosting you and appreciate your kind feedback. We can't wait to welcome you back.

Best Regards,

Enrico Pezzoli
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 January 2016

Just got back from royalton white sands and we have mixed revues.
Good points:
Staff at pool side/swim up bar and beach exellent (kay-ann poolside drinks lady so sweet and pleasant)
views amazing
very clean and modern hotel
good food, sports bar jerk ,chicken beach hut best place to eat.
95% of staff are warm and friendly(the swim up pool bar dancers are exellent)

bad points:
diamond club not worth the money,(in the diamond lounge some staff look miserable which is probably why no one ventures in there)
breakfast buffet, poor service, most people would like an hot drink with there breakfast not 30 minutes later has your leaving.happened on 2 occasions and staff just gave blank expressions
maintanence issues in rooms,(got locked out of bathroom due to faulty lock,being a locksmith i sorted but some child could of been on the inside stuck)
restaurant dress codes,zen and italian let us in no problem with tee-shirt but steak house firstly refused me and then let us in but sat us away from everyone in the corner.(at no point did our butler tell me i needed a collared shirt)in fact it says "recommended" which in england means not compulsary)steak house staff need lessons in customer service.
entertainment! what entertainment, very poor and not organised ,leaflets around the grounds say on the beach one night and its in the hotel this happened almost every night.(doesnt take much to sort this out)

thats my take on royalton white sands,good and bad but overall we were very happy
has others have said go visit the locals huts on the beach they dont bite in fact they love the fact your going to see them.see sheldon at leons lobster hut he will sort you out a great lobster meal on the beach.
Also the owners visited while we were there and the royalton treatment was laid on in buckets for these VIP,S, its just a shame the paying guests dont get the same treatment.

Room Tip: suites are a must
  • Stayed: January 2016, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank Kirsten P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrico P, General Manager at Royalton White Sands Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 January 2016

Dear Kirsten P,

We appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback with us . Please know that we take the comments of guest very seriously and will be making every effort to address them in very short order.

It was a pleasure hosting you here with us and we hope you will return and stay with us once more, in the very near future.

Best Regards,

Enrico Pezzoli
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 January 2016 via mobile

Hotel is good, relatively new, food highly acceptable at every restaurant, only morning breakfast rush is a bit problem.

Special restaurants are great, staff is very friendly. Even if you cannot reserve, just walk-in, you wait like 15-20 mins but worth the wait.

For lunches the burger spot at the beach is great!

The beer and wine quality served in the hotel is poor, rum is acceptable especially if you ask for the reserve one.

Do not forget to take plenty of single dollars, staff is so friendly you feel the need to show your gratitude with tips everywhere.

The special club and butler service is definitely NOT paying an extra dime. We only saw butler when we checked in never again, and what they call Diamond club private beach is just a corner if the hotel beach, definitely not worth the extra bucks.

Although they want to keep you inside the hotel area, go to left side of the beach, don't be scared of locals trying to sell you staff, they are not dangerous or anything. Meet Lisa she made beautiful beaded hair for our 10 year old daughter, find Santino (Tino) he is a kite surfing pro and tought my 15 year old son kite surfing for 3 days with a fraction of a cost that we would pay somewhere else. These 2 people, especially Tino made our stay something different than just staying lazy in an all inclusive hotel.

The places to see around is 1) magnificient Sunset at Rick's bar at west (and you can jump/dive from rocks) and 2) Waterfall climbing at east, do not pay bug bucks to tours, ask Tino, either he will drive you or he will arrange much affordably, and much more fun.

Also Leo's Lobster restaurant, on the beach next to hotel, is very local but so tasty, just go in the morning see and reserve for lunch.

Rooms are a bit small but cosy, no need to insist and pay extra for Ocean view, windows and balconies are at an angle to ocean, no great view, you just look out once and not again. But try to refrain from staying on the left wing, right next lot there's a big new hotel construction active and noisy 24/7.

In general we had the best experience and looking forward to go back again.

Stayed: December 2015, travelled with family
4  Thank Jeremy2011_07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Enrico P, General Manager at Royalton White Sands Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 14 January 2016

Dear jeremy2011_07,

Thank you so much for sharing your experience with us on your recent stay at the Royalton White Sands.
We appreciate your lovely comments on the staff and will let them know how much they helped in making your stay wonderful.
I have noted your areas of concern and will be addressing them in short order. Please know that your comments are valuable to us and thank you for sharing your experience .

Once again, it was a pleasure having you here with us and we can't wait to welcome you back.

Best Regards,

Enrico Pezzoli
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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