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Royal Plantation Review!


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#1 JenniferSS

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    Posted 08 August 2009 - 10:00 PM

    I just recently returned from Royal Plantation in Ocho Rios, Jamaica and wanted to share the amazing experience that I had!

    Immediately I felt myself start to relax as the resort came into view –the entire vibe of the property is laid back and comfortable! Upon exiting from my private transfer I was immediately greeted with a chilled clothe scented with eucalyptus and a warm welcoming smile.

    Check in was efficient, of course the mango mimosa’s or mangosas, are a wonderful way to ease the paperwork, then off I went to my suite! I was in a Premium Luxury Oceanfront Suite and although this was one of the lower suite categories available, when I walked in it just took my breathe away!

    The first thing that I noticed was the amazing view, at some resorts an ocean view – well let’s just say it’s stretching the truth a bit and you may need to be a contortionist to see the ocean. Not so at Royal Plantation, the drapes were pulled back, the late afternoon light flooded my room and the ocean beckoned to me! I loved how the garden right outside my window framed the ocean! I immediately fell in love with my suite, it was light and airy, the 4 poster mahogany bed piled high with a duvet and pillows and having the separate sitting area and the walk in closet made me settle easily into my temporary retreat. Each night I slipped into my comfortable bed (with it’s high thread count) and had a choice of pillows to entice me to sleep- it was wonderful.

    The bathroom did not disappoint either, having a vanity area with double sinks and then a separate area for the tub/shower and toilet was wonderful- not sure about the rest of you but when I travel with my husband it makes both of our lives easier with that layout as we are not tripping over each other to get ready!

    I thought that I may be disappointed with not having a balcony, as one of my favorite past times is to have breakfast sitting on my balcony or before retiring to bed relaxing on the balcony listening to the tree frogs. However I found that I loved the French balcony just as much – each morning after turning off the A/C and throwing the doors wide open, being able to hear the ocean and enjoy a cup of coffee at the in room sitting area was just as wonderful!

    The first evening we had dinner at Le Papillion. The chef here is creative, and we enjoyed an amazing meal that was both pleasing to the palette and the eye. If you enjoy gourmet food you will thoroughly enjoy this restaurant. We also had the privledge of meeting Jefferson, the resident sommelier. That is a man who has a passion for his job! Fully immersed in his presentation Jefferson was the opposite of any pre conceived notion I had about a sommelier being ‘stuffy”- he had us in stitches throughout, but his pairings for each course of our meal were spot on and truly delicious!

    The next day I had a light continental breakfast at the Terrace. The staff here is attentive and so sweet! The rest of my group were raving about their breakfast entrees! I’m not much of a breakfast eater but I love a good cup of coffee and fresh fruit. I was not disappointed! The papaya on the fruit plate was succulent and the best I have ever tasted ( on the day of my departure I made sure it was the last thing I ate so that it would be my last memory of Royal Plantation!)

    #2 JenniferSS

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      Posted 08 August 2009 - 10:03 PM

      We spent the morning touring the various room categories at the property- true to Sandals form this is not a cookie cutter hotel. Each room category was unique and offered guests a slightly different experience!

      Honeymoon Plantation Oceanfront 1Bedroom suite- this is where Jessica Simpson & Nick Lahey stayed during their visit ! Located in the quieter East wing this is a large suite with 593 sq ft. On enetering you walk into a small living area, to the right you will be lead into the bedroom or to the left an amazing bathing area. Here you will find a large jetted soaking tub for two, an open air shower and views of the Caribbean sea that will take your breathe away! Off the bedroom is the traditional bath area with double marble vanities and an oversized balcony, again with a awe inspiring view of the Caribbean sea framed by gardens. Only 3 of these available.

      Honeymoon Grande Lux Verandah suite- Located in the West wing this suites claim to fame is the large balcony (178 square ft!) complete with it’s own mini bar, loungers and ceiling fan. Of course there is breath taking views of the beach & Caribbean sea. Not to be outdone the oversized bathroom features marble double vanities, a whirlpool tub and separate open air tumble stone shower with rainfall shower head. The bedroom area is immense but simplistic, featuring a half canopy king bed. Suite interior is 549 sq ft. Only 3 of these available.

      Honeymoon Grande Lux Oceanfront suite- Located in the East wing this suite has 549 sq. feet these suites are treasured for their views ( however some have a full balcony while others may have a French balcony), large sitting area and unique dressing area. The marble bathroom has a separate walk in shower, a jetted tub for one, bidet and standard toilet and single sink. However in adjacent dressing area you will have the comfort of marble double vanity sinks and a large walk in closet. The bedroom and sitting area are spacious and feature mahogany furniture. I love the full canopies on the custom crafted king size beds. Only 3 of these available.

      Additional Rooms:
      Of course they are all truly beautiful and offer ocean views!

      •Royal Oceanfront 1 Bedroom Suite. This only located in the West Wing on the third floor at 1628 sq ft with two full walkout balconies. At the very ends of the buildings
      •Royal Oceanfront 2 Bedroom Suite. This only located in the West Wing on the third floor at 2093 sq ft with two bedrooms and a private walk out balcony. At the very ends of the buildings
      •Deluxe and Premium Oceanfront Junior Suites: are the only rooms without a jetted tub. They have French Balconies and 2 sinks at between 365-395 sq ft.
      •Luxury Oceanfront Junior Suites: this is the room you want to book if you need connecting rooms. They have 18 suites and 7 are double beds. They can also fit 3 persons to a room with a roll-a-way. They have French balconies and one sink at 465 sq ft. They are only located in the West Wing.


      After our tour we spent a few hours at Mystic Mountain- what a rush ! I’ll review that separately!

      #3 JenniferSS

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        Posted 08 August 2009 - 10:07 PM

        On our return we went to the Royal Cafe (Grill in the evening) for a late lunch. The menu is amazing and the three of us just could not choose-soooooo…we split three items, a Lobster BLT, a Crabcake sandwhich and the Jerk chicken. Needless to say once our order arrived there was not much talking going on. The food was to die for! I highly recommend all three (and crab cakes can really be a hit or miss-this was definitely a hit!).

        This evening we had cocktails with Mr. Frasier the general manager of Royal Plantation. What a gracious and warm man. He truly had a love of “his’ resort that shone when he talked about Royal Plantation, his staff and the experience he desired for his guests! I truly felt like his guest at his home.

        That evening we had dinner under the stars at The Terrace restaurant, this was a buffet style with our salads and antipasta available in the air conditioned restaurant while the most mouthwatering lobster tail, grouper, mahi mahi and steak filet were grilled right in front of us! We also had choice of rice, potatoes, pork chops and julienned vegetables. Inside there was a dessert table or bananas Foster made to order! I chose the Foster and was glad I did! We had live entertainment from a fantastic band that mixed it up with reggae, oldies but goodies, socca and a few love songs. It was a great mix that had many couples up dancing. Fantastic time, to be dined and entertained under the stars!

        That night I opened my French balcony doors, enjoyed a beverage from my mini bar and jotted my notes while listening to the tree frogs and the ocean. Ummm, I could get used to this in a hurry!

        I decided to sleep in and have a great excuse to try the room service card that was placed during turn down. I ordered the eggs benedict and hot chocolate (I had heard they had fantastic hot chocolate-they do!). The next morning room service was right on time and I thoroughly enjoyed my breakfast. I loved that they bring linens to set up your table-it’s the little touches that make all the difference!

        I met up with the group as we were going to tour SunDowner Villa that morning. This is a private villa that Sandals rents out on Bloody Bay. We were then treated to Scotchies famous Jerk! (Yes, I did gain weight on this trip!). Be sure to look for my reviews on both of these!

        We had a free afternoon where we enjoyed the pool (with pool side beverage service!) and when it became shaded we headed down to the beach to find those last afternoon rays and dig our toes into the baby powder soft sand!

        It was easy to find a couple of loungers and the beach staff immediately set us up with fresh chairs covers, towels and cold drinks. Again, the service at this resort is amazingly friendly and efficient. Our drinks were never allowed to get warm nor empty-yet the staff was unobtrusive.

        #4 JenniferSS

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          Posted 08 August 2009 - 10:10 PM

          That night we had cocktails with Mr. Roper, who oversees all of the Sandals, Beaches & Royal Plantation properties in many capacities and dined with him and also Mr. Frasier, general manager of Royal Plantation at The Royal Grill. This restaurant offers Caribbean fusion and Tapas mixture. It is open seasonally and based on occupancy levels, however you can order from this menu in any other restaurant if it is closed.

          Both gentlemen were anxious to discuss our clients experiences at all of the properties under the Sandals umbrella and listen to any ideas we shared. They also teased us with the prospect of many new innovations that are coming down the pipe! It’s wonderful to partner with a company who still truly care about their guests, are innovative and constantly trying new things!

          The food again was delightful, I chose the tapas variety plate- of course the meal was wonderful. For desert this evening several of us shared a berry cobbler, ameretto cheesecake and a chocolate tart (yup- we couldn’t chose just one!). All were excellent but the overall favorite was the berry cobbler ( and I am not a cobbler fan- it was phenomenal!). Another fantastic end to a wonderfully relaxing day at Royal Plantation, I can’t wait to return.

          [U] A few notes-[/U]
          *Royal Plantation, Ocho Rios Jamaica: 74 Suites, One Three Bedroom Villa

          *While this resort is one of the Leading Small hotels of the World, the goal here is unpretentious luxury, pampering and relaxation. There is nothing pretentious about the property. Dinners were casual, a nice sundress for the ladies and khaki or linen pants with a polo shirt for the men was what most couples wore. We did not see anyone over the top! Daytime wear was shorts & tank tops when not on the beach. If dining it is requested that women wear cover ups, men a shirt and both have on sandals or shoes.

          *In the winter months the resort sees guests who range in age from the mid thirties on up, with a few younger honeymooners sprinkled in. Great mix from all over the world.

          *During the late spring through summer the resort has a younger crowd, mostly honeymoon and anniversary couples.

          * No matter what time of year this is an extremely quiet, romantic get awayfrom all the cares of the world, resort. Entertainment varies nightly but is on the mellow side. You will not find organized pool or beach games nor loud music. You will find a warm caring staff who would love to engage you in a conversation, if you chose. Activities to engage you such as water sports, a full game room with a pool table, board games and a honor library. On big sports nights they will set up a party atmosphere in the game room complete with a snack buffet and theatre style seating!

          *Mandy Moore stayed in and filmed from suite 261 for the movie License to Wed!

          *There are two meal plans available;
          EP is European Plan and includes continental breakfast, does not include transfers or gratuities and during the day hours (7am – 11pm ) there is a $10 surcharge for room service plus the 15% surcharge. (Between 11pm and 7am the $10 service charge is not added on to room service).
          Royal Plan is the all inclusive option, I highly recommend it as it offers a tremendous value ! Your round trip transfers are included, your room service is included ( no additional fees), all bar beverages, house wines and house champagne is included, Martini Moments every Friday in the Appleton lounge, Full in room concierge bar, complimentary pillow menu and all gratuities. In addition your watersports including scuba diving (if certified), complimentary golf clinic on Tuesdays, greens fees and shuttle service to the golf course (caddy & cart additional and required). Plus you can dine at Sandals Dunns River Villagio one evening complete with transfers.

          *And last but not least if you see either of these fantastic young men at Royal Plantation- Trudane(wedding coordinator) or Shawn, be sure to give them a big hello from me. They made sure that our stay was amazing, every need was anticipated and overall they were both extremely kind, considerate and beamed with pride about Royal Plantation.

          •The main lobby and terrace sit between two main sections of the property.
          oThe West Wing: views of the property, ocean and main beach area
          oThe East Wing: quieter, views of garden and ocean
          •From 11am until 1pm the beach butlers will serve fresh fruit, mangosas, cucumbers on eyes and water misting, after 1pm simply place a flag in the sand
          •Cabanas: At Royal Plantation they have a unique experience of the “Night Cabana” Rental. This is rented from 10 pm until 7am and you are woken with a fresh water basin and wash cloth and an early morning swim ($150).
          oOther times include: Breakfast between 7-11 am ($150), Lunch between 11am until 2pm ($175) and Dinner between 6-10pm which can include a beach bonfire experience ($375)
          •Red Lane Spa: They use “Mac” Makeup in the Salon. “Pick you Paradise”, to pick your spa location is an extra $80 per couple or $40 per person
          •Wifi: if you have your own computer the charges are as follows, $13.99 (1 day), $21.99 (3 days), $38.99 (7 days). You can access the internet all over the property including the popular “game room”. Not all rooms have wifi but all have high speed internet. This is because the signal can’t be picked up in all locations of the rooms. You can also use their computer for .60 cents per minute.
          •2 Tennis Courts that can be lit for night tennis. Tennis Pro is free of charge on the Royal Plan (All Inclusive).
          •RP Promo: 6 nights or longer enjoy the “party cruise” from 4:30 until 8 pm. The cat is shared with Sandals Guests. RP is finding that not too many people are wanting to take part of this, even if it is for free


          Copyright 2009-2010: About the author, Jennifer Prymula, owner of Sand & Sun Vacations is a Certified Sandals Specialist and travels frequently to all of the Sandals, Beaches & Royal Plantation properties in the Caribbean. Sand & Sun Vacations specializes in Honeymoons. Destination weddings, Couples Getways, Babymoons and Beaches family vacations.

          #5 JenniferSS

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            Posted 08 August 2009 - 10:20 PM

            Trudane Hardware is the wedding consultant for Royal Plantation. One of the nicest individuals I have ever met and he does a fantastic job!

            Weddings at Royal Plantation are an intimate affair - there are only, on average 3 weddings a month. However they will perform two on the same day, but one must be morning and the other afternoon.

            The Villa (Villa Plantana) also available to have weddings at -but you must have rented the villa to have the ceremony there.

            The Diamond Wedding $2799
            Private Car Round Trip Airport Transfers
            Personal Wedding Coordinator
            Preparation of Documents
            Legal Fees & Copy of License
            50 minute Couples West Indian Massage
            Hairstyling & Make-Up for Bride
            French Manicure & Pedicure for Bride
            Dressing Attendant for Bride
            Bouquet of Fresh Orchids
            Orchid Boutonniere
            Exquisite Ceremony Location
            Marriage Officiant
            Best Man & Maid of Honor if required
            Keepsake Album with 24 5x7 Photographs
            Wedding Video
            Calypso Band for One Hour
            Four (RP) Guests for Ceremony & Reception
            French Champagne for Reception
            Keepsake Champagne Flutes
            Delectable Array of Hors d’oeurvres
            Two-Tiered Wedding Cake
            Tropical Floral Arrangement in Suite
            Praline Hearts & Champagne Turndown
            Champagne Breakfast in Bed
            “Just Married” Polo Shirts

            *Payment policy for Weddings and Renewal of Vows is a $200 deposit within 7 days of booking. Final balance is due 60 days prior to travel. Cancellation policy for Weddings and Renewal of Vows is non-refundable within 45 days to travel. All Government Fees are included 3 Updated 01/20/09sr
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            #6 JenniferSS

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              Posted 08 August 2009 - 10:23 PM

              The Ultimate Wedding $3999
              Private Car Round Trip Airport Transfers
              Personal Wedding Coordinator
              Preparation of Documents
              Legal Fees & Copy of License
              35 minute West Indian Massage for Bride
              35 minute Neck & Shoulder Massage for Groom
              French Manicure & Pedicure for Bride
              Reflexology Facial & Spa Manicure for Groom
              Hairstyling & Make-Up for Bride
              Dressing Attendant for Bride
              Bouquet of One Dozen Roses
              Rose Boutonniere
              Exquisite Ceremony Location
              Marriage Officiant
              Best Man & Maid of Honor if required
              Keepsake Album with 36 5x7 Photographs
              Wedding Video
              Solo Musician for Ceremony
              Release of Two White Doves following Ceremony
              Four (RP) Guests for Ceremony & Reception
              French Champagne for Reception & Dinner
              Keepsake Champagne Flutes
              Delectable Array of Hors d’oeurvres
              Two-Tiered Wedding Cake
              Tropical Floral Arrangement in Suite
              Praline Hearts & Champagne Turndown
              Champagne Breakfast in Bed
              “Just Married” Polo Shirts
              *Payment policy for Weddings and Renewal of Vows is a $200 deposit within 7 days of booking. Final balance is due 60 days prior to travel. Cancellation policy for Weddings and Renewal of Vows is non-refundable within 45 days to travel. All Government Fees are included


              #7 jamaicabride09

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                Posted 10 August 2009 - 11:42 PM

                Thanks for the detailed review. The resort sounds breathtaking!!

                #8 LJSweetpea

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                  Posted 26 August 2009 - 04:51 PM

                  I am so excited! I am getting married at RP on January 16th and I truly appreciate this very detailed review! Thanks again!

                  #9 JenniferSS

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                    Posted 04 July 2010 - 08:52 PM

                    Just a bump for newbies!

                    #10 ls415

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                      Posted 10 July 2010 - 01:36 PM

                      I'm curious to know if anyone has planned a reception following a Royal Plantation Ocho Rios wedding? I think we will have about 50 people attend, and I'm not sure about menus, venues, and costs. I will contact RP directly on Monday, but would love t0 hear first hand stories...Thanks, Laura




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