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Sandals/Beaches vs. RIU

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#21 hollisandsteph

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    Posted 26 February 2008 - 10:02 AM

    I chose Sandals because I wanted small intimate feel. Call me a bad mother but I do have kids and honestly if I stayed somewhere where kids were involved I would not feel comfortable not bring my kids. My FI and I have been together for 8 years and have 4 children between us that we have 100% custody of all of them(one of the children is ours together). We have never done anything (besides an occasional Saturday night away) without them. We feel a bit guilty but at the same time feel it is due. They may not be involved in the actual wedding but we are having a huge reception in July that they are very involoved in. Basically Sandals gives us what we need. Adult only interaction that is all-inclusive!

    #22 FutureMRS.

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      Posted 24 March 2009 - 01:48 PM

      We chose the RIU because of the cost and because it is kid-friendly without being too kid friendly. Not many of our guests will be bringing their children (if any), but I have an 8year old daughter and would not dream of having a wedding someplace that she was not allowed. Nor would I entertain the thought of not having her there to witness it.

      #23 islandbride317

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      • 1,866 posts

        Posted 27 March 2009 - 05:04 AM

        Sorry if I am posting to an old thread, but as a recently-joined noobie, I had this very same question in mind and was looking for opinions and advice on the Sandals vs. RIU topic myself!

        Originally, I had Sandals Grande Ocho Rios firmly in mind as the resort-of-choice, but then when I came to this site, I was introduced to RIU, a resort I was unaware even existed. Having already done my homework on Sandals, I wanted to see what RIU/ROR was all about. It appears to be a beautiful, all-inclusive resort, with plenty of things to do (not to mention awesome wedding packages) but like a lot of other have said, it seems that the decision really does come down to costs n' kids. I prefer an adult-only resort, and the cost difference to me is not so extreme that I would steer away from my original decision on SGOR.

        Thanks for everyone's past input -- this thread was just what I had been searching for! It has made me feel so much more confident that SGOR is going to be the right fit for me, my fiance and all of our guests!

        Best wishes to all RIU and SANDALS brides alike!

        #24 misskaytee

        • Jr. Member
        • 154 posts

          Posted 28 March 2009 - 11:26 AM

          I could not have said it better myself :) YAY Sandals!!

          Our Website (updates on our wedding, the house we just bought, and more!) http://www.freewebs.com/kayteeandcj/
          Wedding Website:http://weddings.thek....rd=&MsdVisit=1

          #25 KatelynMarie123

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            Posted 13 April 2009 - 12:57 PM

            I can't get over the wristband thing... I want to feel like I'm on vacation, not at a carnival.

            Did this bother anyone else?

            #26 KatelynMarie123

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              Posted 21 April 2009 - 10:03 PM

              I know! I just can't help it.

              #27 hockeymom97

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                Posted 30 August 2009 - 01:17 PM

                Originally Posted by TA Jennifer
                I hope no one minds me jumping in here :) !

                Each Sandals & Beaches properties are slightly different from each other and there are differences from Riu Ocho Rios to keep the thread from getting too long I'll focus on the family properties Beaches Boscabel & ROR!

                Riu is a larger (846 rooms), new, moderate resort- family oriented with a children's program that provides activities for kids 4-12 years old. There is a party vibe here, great beach and the rooms are fairly spacious. Prices fairly good. In room mini bar & liquor dispenser. Includes sailing, windsurfing, kayaking & snorkeling for non motorized wattersports.

                Quirks- need to wear a wristband, keep towel cards, make reservations for dinner that night early in the morning ( may not get the restauraunt you want). Food is good but not gourmet (you won't go hungry though!). King beds are actually two beds pushed together. pretty sure they water down the alcohol.

                Beaches- Boscabel. Mid sized property (223 rooms). This property will cost more but overall it delivers a lot more also! Property has a family vibe but delivers a really good time for the twenty-something crowd.

                Childrens programs are broken up into age appropriate with certified nannies-Camp Sesame ages 2-5; Pirates & Mermaids 6-7; Survivors 8-12; the Teen Scene 13+ ( this group is the hardest to keep happy and Beaches has organized activites like karaoke, beach xtreme games, bonfire parties, teen only clubs, theme parties ect)There are also the Sesame St. characters, XBOX game oasis, waterpark and kids Golf clinics. These activirties are not limited to just the kids-ok well maybe the baking cookies with Zoey but you get my drift!

                The food quality ranges from snacks to adult only gourmet dining. Food quality ranges from pretty good to incredible. No reservations needed except for the adult fine dining. Pretty sure they do not waterdown the alcohol ( not that I know from any personal experience that I am willing to admit LOL!)

                Have rooms that can accomodate up to 5 people.

                As far as water sports there is scuba diving ( not just a class - if you are PADI certified your dives are included), snorkeling, sailing, glass bottom boats, hobie cats, kayaking, windsurfing, Aquatrikes. Outside of watersports there is golf ( caddies are mandatory in Jamaica and cost extra).

                No towel cards.

                All gratuities are already added in ( this can really add up at Riu!).

                Quirks- older property, only upper category rooms have minibar. The beach here is smaller than the Riu but perfect for the size of this property. The rooms are older and may need some sprucing up ( although Beaches & Sandals is undergoing an overhaul to all of the properties.)

                A few factors to consider-

                If your guest are price sensitive (just graduating or recently got married, whatever..) or are only going for a couple of days then all of the extras that are included at Beaches will go to waste and I'd recommend the Riu.

                BUT if they are going longer, you want to have a late night reception (and need sitters for the kids) or have kids that are usually high maintanence and need to be entertained (or some of the grown ups for that matter hee hee!) I'd recommend Beaches!

                Hope that helped some!
                TA Jennifer
                As always - thank you for all the information Jennifer!! I know this is an older thread but I've wondered the same thing about RIU Negril vs. Beaches Negril. We did consider RIU in the beginning but I wasn't sure there would be enough to do to keep my then 13 year old entertained so we ultimately chose Beaches. This of course was before I found BDW, and as soon as I found this forum, I started searching for Beaches info and found that RIU Negril seemed to be way more popular, and I couldn't find as much info on Beaches. And even though we are already booked at Beaches, I sometimes question my decision
                I can't get over the wristband thing... I want to feel like I'm on vacation, not at a carnival.

                Did this bother anyone else?
                And yes, that bothers me - if nothing else it's annoying and gives me a tan line on my wrist - and do they expect you to wear this even on your wedding day?!
                Heather & Eric ~ May 5th, 2011 ~ Beaches Turks & Caicos

                #28 abbyroldan@yahoo.com

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                  Posted 11 October 2009 - 05:01 PM

                  I'm also debating whether to stay with Beaches Negril or now go to Riu Negril because of pricing. After spreading the news about our destination wedding less were excited about it...because the cost it would require for their family.

                  Would anyone also know more specifics about the wedding planning process at Riu? Since having decided on Sandals I have been working with a TA for a short while to see what her role would be and she seems very flexible and helpful...even seems to have local venues/resources to make your big day that much more special and unique. it's a package. There are some decoration ideas i would like to customize. I wonder what the Riu wedding packages look like? It would be nice to see pictures of a Riu wedding vs. Beaches wedding. It would be great to see someone's Riu Wedding photos ceremony decor and reception decor!
                  Ms. Abby

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