| Montego Bay: Where to Stay
Thereís something for everyone. Budget travelers and big spenders
will both find something to suit.
| Note that prices, unless
otherwise noted, are in US dollars.
Prices are per room, based on double occupancy. In the
case of all-inclusive properties, prices are per person.
|$ = up to $50 per day
|$$ = $51 to $100 per day
|$$$ = $101 to $175 per day
|$$$$ = over $175 per day
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Adventure Guide - This travel guide walks with the adventurous
traveler to the heart of Jamaica, to the miles of sand beaches,
to the rugged Blue Mountains, to the country villages that provide
a peek at the real Jamaica|
Resorts, Hotels & Inns
THE ATRIUM AT IRONSHORE HOTEL
Morgan Road, Rose Hall
876-953-2605, fax 876-953-3683
This 33-villa, family-run property is air-conditioned.
All accommodations have kitchen and dining facilities as well as
a pool and satellite TV. Located near the airport. Part of the Insiderís
Jamaica program (see page 108).
BLUE HARBOUR HOTEL
6 Sewell Avenue
876-952-5445, fax 876-952-8930
This 24-room inn is air-conditioned and has access
for the handicapped. Family-sized rooms can accommodate groups of
up to 10 persons. Rooms have kitchen facilities and satellite TV.
Thereís a saltwater pool or you can stroll down to the nearby beach.
The inn is located on a hill. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
COMFORT INN AND SUITES MONTEGO BAY
876-953-3250, fax 876-953-3062; reservations 800-228-5150
This 150-room hotel is the former SeaCastles and
is a part of the Choice Hotels International group. Itís situated
on a small private beach. The recently renovated property includes
one- and two-bedroom units as well as studios. The all-inclusive
package features three buffet meals daily, supervised kids activities,
non-motorized watersports, gratuities and taxes, house-brand liquors
and soft drinks, tennis and daily entertainment. Every Friday the
hotel offers a Jamaican night with local food and music.
CORAL CLIFF HOTEL
876-952-4130, fax 876-952-6532
This 30-room Colonial-style inn is near Doctorís
Cave beach and includes dining facilities and a pool. Itís not far
from Cornwall and Walter Fletcher beaches. The standard rooms have
air conditioning, phone and individual bathrooms. Superior rooms
have larger bathrooms and balconies with a pool view. The property
has a good location for those interested in nightlife with its position
along the Hip Strip. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
AUTHORSí TIP: Gamblers should note that this hotel
is home to the largest gaming facility in Jamaica.
COYABA BEACH RESORT AND CLUB
North Coast Highway at Mahoe Bay
876-953-9150, fax 876-953-2244; reservations 800-237-3237
($$$-$$$$) (All-inclusive optional)
This $10 million resort has the feel of an intimate
inn, but it offers the amenities of a larger resort. Located on
a shady stretch of beach, Coyaba is a good option if youíre seeking
the niceties and luxuries of an exclusive retreat. The hotel offers
all-inclusive deals or European Plan only. The plantation-style
great house on the property houses the main restaurant. Amenities
include a freshwater pool, hot tub, massage, tennis, watersports,
recreation room, tennis, a dive shop, windsurfing and a playground.
Guest rooms are light and airy, decorated in an
elegant tropical style with mahogany furniture. Youíll be greeted
by a basket of banana bread, a sweet introduction to this special
DOCTORíS CAVE BEACH HOTEL
876-952-4355, fax 876-952-5204
This 90-room hotel is near Doctorís Cave Beach
(surprise, surprise!). It has air-conditioned rooms, kitchen facilities,
handicapped access for some rooms, a pool, satellite TV and a fitness
center. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program. The hotel is home
to two restaurants, one casual and the other semi-formal.
HALF MOON GOLF, TENNIS AND BEACH CLUB
North Coast Highway, 7 miles east of Montego Bay
876-953-2211, fax 876-953-2731; reservations 800-237-3237
Half Moon is one of the countryís most elegant
resorts, the place to be pampered. It offers a variety of room configurations,
from large guest rooms and junior suites to villas that look like
something right out of Beverly Hills, complete with sweeping staircases
and maid and butler service. The black and white decor, like everything
in the resort, is ultra-chic.
The resort is a favorite with well-to-do Japanese
vacationers, who feel right at home in rooms that offer Japanese-language
periodicals and Japanese television channels.
Half Moon sprawls out across the islandís
north coast and youíll never feel crowded. Along with 13 tennis
courts, 39 swimming pools, croquet, horseback riding, bikes, squash,
numerous restaurants, a dive shop, kidsí program, ultra-pricey shopping
center, and even a hospital, youíll find a quiet nature reserve.
The resort also now offers the David Leadbetter Golf Plan, with
daily instruction from a David Leadbetter-certified instructor.
HOLIDAY INN SUNSPREE RESORT
North Coast Highway, 6 miles east of Montego Bay
876-953-2485, fax 876-953-2840; reservations 800-HOLIDAY
Couples and families make up much of the clientele
at this popular resort which has undergone many changes in the last
several years. A $13 million facelift in 1995 transformed it into
an all-inclusive property. The 523 guest rooms have all received
an overhaul. There is a variety of activities on offer, including
watersports, tennis, volleyball, nearby golf, a kids programs and
876-952-3287, fax 876-979-0351
This 33-room inn is air-conditioned and includes
dining, a pool and satellite TV. Set on a hill, the property offers
good views of the sea and is convenient to the airport. The beach
is a short ride away. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
HOTEL RIO BUENO
876-954-0046, fax 876-952-5911
This 20-room hotel has air-conditioned rooms and
dining. All rooms have a view of the Caribbean Sea. The small property
houses the Joe James Art Gallery (Joe offers art lessons too; [email protected]).
Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
20 minutes west of Montego Bay on the North Coast Highway
876-956-4920, fax 876-956-4927
Montego Bay is best known for its beachside getaways,
but if you arenít looking for a stretch of sand on which to relax,
consider a stay in the surrounding hills and valleys Ė or at least
a daytrip into this charming region. Recently, we spent time at
Lethe Estate, a serene hideaway tucked on the banks of the Great
River near the village of Lethe. Quiet, except for the sounds of
singing birds in the surrounding forest, this 15-room inn is an
ideal place to get away from it all. Despite its location, amenities
are not lacking. The inn includes a gourmet restaurant, pool, tennis
and plush rooms. A top daytime activity here is the float on a bamboo
raft down the river under a canopy of forest. A free shuttle runs
hotel guests to the beach and shopping areas daily.
RICHMOND HILL INN
876-952-3859, fax 876-925-6106; reservations 800-423-4095
A trip to Richmond Hill Inn is like visiting your
grandmotherís house: youíre a little afraid that youíre going to
knock something over; you really wish it werenít so fussy, but you
love the way you get treated. The rooms here have seen fresher days,
but still the view is special Ė straight out over Montego Bay and
the sea from high atop the hill.
Richmond Hill has a long history, dating back
to the 1790s when it was the property of the Dewars of Scotch whisky
fame. Guests can take advantage of a free shuttle to MoBay shops
as well as the beach. Facilities here include an excellent restaurant,
coffee shop, pool and laundry service.
Reading, St. James
876-952-5909, fax 876-952-7217
This 28-room inn has air-conditioned rooms, kitchen
facilities, a pool, satellite TV, beach, watersports and restaurant.
It sits alongside Bogue Lagoon just 15 minutes from Montego Bay.
The hotel has several features of special interest to adventure
travelers, including Reading Reefs (photographed by Jacques Cousteau)
and the Bogue Islands (nesting site for birds). Part of the Insiderís
26 Hobbs Avenue
876-952-7218, fax 876-952-7218
This 41-room inn offers a complimentary airport
shuttle as well as a restaurant, pool, satellite TV and ocean views.
All rooms have king-sized beds, a fully equipped kitchenette and
air conditioning. Along with guest rooms, visitors can also select
from one- , two- and three-bedroom apartments. A complimentary shuttle
bus runs to the beaches. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
ROUND HILL HOTEL AND VILLAS
North Coast Highway, 8 miles west of Montego Bay
876-956-7050, fax 876-956-7505; reservations 800-237-3237
A favorite of the rich and famous set, Round Hill
offers suites, traditional hotel rooms and 27 villas. Expensive
and lavish, the villas include maid service (cook service is available
as well), and many have a private pool. The resort includes numerous
amenities, from tennis courts to a dive shop to windsurfing.
INTERESTING FACT: If Round Hill looks familiar, thereís a good
reason: the property was the location of many scenes in How Stella
Got Her Groove Back.
ROYAL COURT HEALTH RESORT
876-952-4531, fax 876-952-4532
Of special interest to vegetarians, this 25-room
resort has a vegetarian restaurant and a fresh fruit and vegetable
juice bar. It offers a free airport shuttle, beach shuttle and shopping
transportation. All rooms are air conditioned. Part of the Insiderís
SANDALS MONTEGO BAY
Kent Avenue, near the airport
876-952-5510, fax 876-952-0816; reservations 800-726-3257
This popular (heterosexual) couples-only resort
does a huge amount of repeat business and is a great choice for
those who want to be close to the airport (you canít get much closer
than this). Planes buzz overhead, but that doesnít seem to deter
people. Like other Sandals resorts, guests at Sandals Montego Bay
enjoy a Stay at One, Dine at Six policy, where they can dine at
any of the 23 eating establishments in the Sandals chain. A desk
at Sandals Montego Bay handles reservations for the sister resorts,
and free shuttles are available to other Sandals located in Montego
Amenities here include five restaurants, numerous
pools, tennis, racquetball, a dive shop, windsurfing and more. The
resortís Sunshine Tennis program includes two hours of complimentary
instruction per week with the visiting professional.
SANDALS ROYAL CARIBBEAN
North Coast Highway
876-953-2231, fax 876-953-2788; reservations 800-726-3257
Whatís the difference between Sandals Royal Caribbean
and Sandals Montego Bay? Quite a bit. While Sandals Montego Bay
boasts more of a party atmosphere, Sandals Royal Jamaican takes
an elegant, laid-back approach. In general, this property is much
quieter than its sister.
We recently stayed in an oceanfront deluxe room
with a mahogany four-poster bed and two-level floor plan. On another
visit, we came for dinner at Sandals private island restaurant,
Bali Hai, known for its Indonesian fare and unbeatable night view
of the city. It was a great dining experience. Amenities at the
resort include four restaurants, numerous pools, tennis, a dive
shop, windsurfing and concierge service.
Gloucester Avenue, in town
876-952-4140, fax 876-952-6913; reservations 800-726-3257
The Sandals Inn is great for the budget-conscious
traveler who wants to enjoy the luxuries of a Sandals property.
This small hotel isnít the sprawling beachfront resort usually associated
with the Sandals chain, but it does have many of the same amenities.
An all-inclusive package here takes care of transfers, activities,
drinks and dining. Guests can also partake in the Sandals Stay at
One, Dine at Six policy (with free transportation to the Mo Bay
resorts). Thereís also a free shuttle that runs throughout the day
to take you and yours (remember, this is a heterosexual couples-only
resort) from the inn to the larger Sandals Montego Bay or Sandals
Royal Jamaican to enjoy beach fun. On-property facilities include
tennis, pool and concierge service.
1 Kent Avenue
876-952-4370, fax 876-952-6591
The 73 rooms here all have air conditioning and
some are handicapped- accessible. All rooms have either a garden
or pool view and private bath. Located in the heart of Montego Bay
near the Doctorís Cave Beach. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
SUNSET BEACH RESORT AND SPA
876-979-8800, fax 876-953-6744
This new 420-room resort sits on the Freeport
peninsula. The property is divided into two sections: the 120-room,
low-rise Beach Inn and the 300-room, 11-story Sunrise and Sunset
Towers. The resort has an impressive list of facilities, with three
private beaches, three swimming pools, snorkeling, Sunfish, sailing,
kayaking, windsurfing, paddle boats, Hobie Cats, jogging trails,
beach volleyball, a fitness center and a supervised kids program.
For late-night fun, thereís a disco as well as
an electronic game casino. All meals are part of the package and
guests have their choice of four dining establishments, including
Asian and Italian specialty restaurants. Six bars are located throughout
the property. Thereís also a spa, although treatments are not part
of the all-inclusive program.
TRYALL GOLF, TENNIS AND BEACH CLUB
North Coast Highway, 15 miles west of Montego Bay
876-956-5660, fax 876-956-5658; reservations 800-238-5290
If youíre a golfer, youíre probably already familiar
with Tryall, a celebrity resort that has hosted many tournament
games. This posh getaway includes everything you need to hole up
and never leave, if you so choose. Thereís a golf course, private
villas with their own pools, tennis courts, dive shops, a driving
range and more. Youíll never feel crowded at this 2,200-acre property.
VERNEYíS TROPICAL RESORT
Leader Avenue, in town
876-952-2875 or 876-952-8628, fax 876-979-2944
This 27-room inn is an excellent place to find
true Jamaican hospitality. Rooms are nothing fancy, but owners Kathleen
and Earnest Sterling are on-property like round-the-clock concierges.
Need a babysitter? Kathleen will find you one. Want to know where
to shop for spices? Just ask. Youíll feel like part of the family.
ďWe really believe in personal service because once you are away
from home it is good to know someone cares,Ē says Kathleen.
The hotelís Kit Kat restaurant is a favorite.
Whenever the hotels in Montego Bay are asked to recommend a restaurant
serving real Jamaican cooking, they refer people here. A free shuttle
runs to Doctorís Cave Beach on weekdays; thereís also a pool on
the property. Part of the Insiderís Jamaica program.
WYNDHAM ROSE HALL
North Coast Highway, east of Montego Bay
876-953-2650, fax 876-953-2617; reservations 800-996-3426
($$$$) (All-inclusive optional)
You can enjoy Wyndham Rose Hall on either a room-only
basis or as an all-inclusive property. This sprawling resort is
just a short drive from the airport, a real boon to those on a short
vacation or traveling with restless kids. Once you arrive, thereís
no need to worry about those kids remaining restless for long. Wyndham
Rose Hall is home to a massive waterpark, a recent addition to the
property. This 110,000-square-foot, $7 million water complex is
called Sugar Mill Falls and comes complete with lagoons and a towering
waterslide. Guests can enjoy lazy river rafting among waterfalls
scattered throughout the park.
This resort is presently undergoing a major upgrade, equipping
its guest rooms with new furniture, carpeting, 27-inch TVs, movie
channels and more. The golf course is located directly across the
street and soon golfers will be able to also use the nearby White
Witch golf course, presently under construction by the Ritz-Carlton
More information on Montego Bay
ē Where to stay
ē Where to eat
ē Things to see &
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