Royal Plantation is a very nice, upscale all-inclusive resort, with only 75 rooms so it is much more boutique than what you might picture as a Caribbean all-inclusive resort. There's not wild dance parties and beach volleyball or ice luges, so if you're looking for a hardcore party spot, you're better off at another place. However, if you are looking for gourmet-level food and an incredible beach, then Sandals Royal Plantation is a good choice. We are pretty picky about our food and find this to be very good. The French restaurant, Le Papillon, is particularly nice. Note to American travelers - they serve at a pace similar to a nice European restaurant, so be prepared for a 2-hour meal.
We also really enjoy the beach and water sports. The twice-daily snorkel tour is excellent. They take you to a couple of different coral reefs that are about a half mile offshore. If you are an active person and will do a lot of water sports, you will probably prefer the East Beach because that is where the snorkel tours, Hobie Cats, paddleboards, and kayaks are. The other beach is more to just chill and/or drink heavily because the bar is right there.
The golf course is a legitimate course that most golfers will enjoy. My wife and I are are 14 and 20 handicappers, respectively, and we found the course to be nice and very playable. We played 3 separate days. If you plan to play multiple days, you can pay in advance. For example, we paid $105 each for 3 days of golf carts & caddie. Then we tipped the caddie $40 each day. Still way cheaper than paying for a championship course in the Caribbean.
The gym is a bit outdated but if you want to grab a quick half hour on a treadmill and/or do a bit of lifting, it's not bad. The RP staff told us they plan to update it in the next year. That will be good. My wife really enjoyed the free yoga classes down on the doc, taught by a really cool Rastafarian guy.
One of the nice perks of RP is that you can venture over to the Grande Riviera next door to use their giant pools (with swim up bars) and restaurants. We thought the restaurants at RP are much better than those at GR but it's good for a change of pace. We had a good experience at the Manor restaurant one night and then tried it again on a Saturday night and it wasn't as good (kind of a zoo that night). The new speakeasy bar called "The RabbitHole" is very cool.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- •All suite resort and all are serviced by butlers trained by the Guild of Professional English Butlers•2 private beaches with beach butler service•The Caribbean’s only Champagne and Caviar Bar•Exquisite International, Mediterranean, Caribbean and French cuisine•24 hour in suite dining•Complimentary transfers from this resort to all Sandals Resorts•Voted Sandals Resorts “World Leading All-Inclusive Company” 16 years in a row•Voted Sandals Resorts “Caribbean’s Leading Hotel Brand” 18 years in a row•Five Star Diamond Award - American Academy of Hospitality Sciences ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sandals Royal Plantation Hotel Ocho Rios
- Royal Plantation Ocho Rios
- Royal Plantation Jamaica