I spent Spring Break in Montego Bay, Jamaica with a large group of family. First and foremost, I want to say that we had an absolute blast together. We laughed so hard each and every day. It was truly special to be able to experience a vacation like this with a large group of family. As much as I have traveled to the Caribbean, I’ve never really traveled with a large group like this. And while traveling with groups can sometimes be difficult, the time we were able to spend together was far worth it.
Review of Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Resort:
Now to the review part… I am the type of person who is going to have fun regardless, especially in good company. However, as a Travel Blogger, I do have some things that I feel the need to point out to anyone who might be considering a stay at Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Resort in the future.
- I LOVE the country of Jamaica for many reasons. The beautiful water, kind and friendly people, and because they offer a large variety of tourism options.
- 95% of the people who worked at Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Resort were extremely hospitable and would do their best to make sure that you were accommodated to the best of their ability. The problems we encountered (which I will outline a bit later) stem mainly from inconsistencies in communication and likely management.
- The Lobby Bar is excellent for drinks in the evening. We loved the bartenders here, especially Antony and Dean! The pool bar doesn’t have as many options.
- The Beach is beautiful and the water is calm. A bit of seaweed started to show up as we were leaving though due to a storm passing through the Caribbean.
- There were vendors on the beach (who actually show up via kayaks). However, they had to leave between 10 am and 4 pm so they couldn’t bother you or take up your view all day long.
- The Dive Center Staff was extremely friendly. We did a tour through them and Bianca was fabulous!
- The gym was spectacular – except for when they locked themselves out one morning.
- We experienced several major miscommunications about whether or not we could visit the neighboring sister Iberostar Resorts. The answer is no.
- We experienced major miscommunications (and by miscommunications I mean flat out completely different stories and rules) about how many dinner reservations we could make, along with when and how we could make them.
- And that leads me to my main overall disappointment with the resort, which was the food. I enjoy the experience of dining, which is why I don’t like buffets. It’s not that the actual food was awful (although it wasn’t 5-star either), it’s that I don’t like having to walk around, make my own plate, stand in lines, etc. And even the other restaurants that require reservations are only “semi a la carte.” That means that our appetizers, salads, and desserts were still on a buffet that we had to go and get ourselves
- The entertainment staff was friendly and offered a wide variety of games throughout the day and night, but I was personally disappointed that we never saw or heard much music. I love getting to see live steel drums or reggae bands while I am in the Caribbean, but I never got to here.
Other Statements worth noting:
- The rooms were average, nothing special but clean.
- Just in case this isn’t already known, the resort is all-inclusive (for all drinks and food)
- Tips were generally expected at the bars
- There is a theater for entertainment. The shows start at 9:30 pm and are different every night.
- There is a “disco” dance club that opens at 11 pm
- We made sure to get on the beach early to claim enough beach chairs for all of us.
Tours & Experiences:
We did two different tours during our time in Montego Bay. The first was a horseback riding tour which we booked through a tour desk at the Hotel. The company that did our horseback riding tour was called Braco Stables. I was very impressed with their knowledge, and I felt very comfortable and safe throughout the entire tour (as someone who has never really been around horses before). I do recommend this tour, as it was absolutely gorgeous to ride the horse through the gardens and farms of the stables, along the beach, and through the gleaming blue seas.
The second tour was the Luminous Lagoon Tour and it was through the Dressel Divers Montego Bay Dive Center (located on the beach at the end of the Resort). This is an extremely unique tour where you take a sunset cruise over to Falmouth and wait for the sun to go down. Once it’s completely dark, you get out into the water and swim and the water glows around you. The glow comes from a collection of rare dinoflagellate that glows as a defense mechanism. This was a truly magical and breathtaking exprience and something that I have never experienced anywehre else.
We really enjoyed both tours! I always recommend doing at least one tour on any trip; it really allows you to incorporate different experiences and get a better feel for the country or region.
We had a fabulous time together as a group in Jamaica, and I would definitely go back to Jamaica (I’ve been 3 other times). However, I cannot say that I would choose to go back to Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Resort specifically. It is an average, affordable option and might be a good option for high school or college students. However, as someone who reviews hotels on a regular basis and after personally spending so much time at Sandals Resorts – I have extremely high expectations for Caribbean Resorts of which Iberostar Rose Hall Beach Resort did not meet.
But even with that said, I realize that different people like different things. So if you have any specific questions about this resort or others that I have visited please don’t hesitate to ask. Message me on Instagram, I’d love to chat!
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Until next time,