**Disclosure: This trip was part of a FAM (Familiarization) Trip sponsored by AAA, Pleasant Holidays, and Sandals Resorts. Please note that all photos are the author's own, except where credited. As a travel industry professional, I make a big investment in first hand experiences, and I spend a lot of time to keep up with my accreditation and staying up to date with current and future developments in the airline and travel industries. This means attending conferences, seminars, site inspections, FAM (familiarization) Trips, and even group trips. I have been able to have some of these experiences shown and described in my blog entries at a reduced cost or comped by the hotel, tour operator, cruise line, or other supplier. The feedback supplied is based on my own personal experience. The first hand experience allows me to better serve my clients and match the experiences they are looking for.**
Sometimes you just want to get away from everyone and everything, relax, unwind, and be pampered. Sometimes you just want to seek out other golfers' with the same mindset as well, and have no Golf greens fees. Or maybe you're alone and just want to lay in a hammock all day long, then retire to your suite and order room service. Either way, you need to be at the Sandals Royal Plantation in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.
Located an hour and a half away from either Montego Bay or Kingston, the complimentary transfer to and from the resort is a godsend (and if you're in one of the top-tier suites, you have pick up and drop off provided by chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce or Mercedes Benz). Nestled on 10 acres of lush beachfront property, the Sandals Royal Plantation boasts only 74 suites (in 11 bookable categories for all my Travel Agent fans), and ALL suites have ocean views as well as Butler service and a pillow menu featuring 5 different types of supporting pillows for all guests' needs.
On property there are 5 world-class gourmet dining options and two bars, including the Caribbean's only Champagne & Caviar Bar (for an extra charge), known as the C-Bar. From French cuisine to amazing seafood, fine dining under the stars at The Terrace, or right on the beachfront at the Royal Grill, you're bound to have an unforgettable meal each and every time. For a quick, non-formal bite with a fabulous cocktail, try the Wobbly Peacock Pub and imbibe.
The best part of booking a Suite at the Sandals Royal Plantation is the Butler Elite service. Your very own Butler can provide you with private in-suite check in, unpack your luggage for you and have it neatly stowed (I had this at the Sandals Ochi Beach), provide you with a cell phone to keep in touch with them when needed, take your room service orders, handle any and all laundry and dry cleaning requests with two complimentary pressings (that's better than the Langham Hotels!), drawing flower-petal bubble baths, bring you snacks and/or beverages ANYWHERE on the resort, continuously check and re-stock your in-suite bar with your preferred beverages, arrange for special surprises and private dining and picnics, and arrange for spa services without you lifting a finger.
There's no real downside to Sandals Royal Plantation, except it is not handicap accessible. There are no ramps anywhere on property, only stairs, so if you have mobility or climbing issues, this is not the resort for you. Other than that, this is definitely the place to get away from it all and completely unwind. Along with all the other perks, you do have full exchange privileges with Sandals Ochi Beach Club, meaning you have full access to all activities and areas, as well as access to the Sandals Hop jitney to take you between resorts. That access alone is worth the stay.
|Photo credit Sandals Royal Plantation|