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1st Trip Jamaica-Ritz an OK Choice?

Old Feb 6th, 2010, 07:33 PM
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1st Trip Jamaica-Ritz an OK Choice?

The 2 of us will be traveling to Monbay during Thanksgiving wk. We think the Ritz is a good value right now on Expedia. May I ask-do we HAVE to rent a car while there? Can we find inexpensive restaurants nearby? Will an oceanview be a good choice?
Much thanks for all advice!
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Old Feb 7th, 2010, 06:41 AM
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I haven't stayed there, but the beach is not very good. I'd keep looking.
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Old Feb 7th, 2010, 07:11 AM
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The Ritz-Carlton in MoBay is a fine hotel with a very mediocre beach. The other consideration in booking so far in advance is that the owner of the hotel is having a legal dispute with Ritz-Carlton, and it's quite possible that this hotel will not be a Ritz-Carlton by the time you travel there.

If you want to go to Jamaica, I'd conider the Half Moon Resort or the Rose Hall Resort (the latter is, I belive, a Hilton now). The Half Moon Resort has a lovely long beach. The newer Iberostar hotels in MoBay also have some nice beaches and offer upscale accommodations for an all-inclusive, if you want that kind of experience.

I would not recommend renting a car because it's difficult to drive in Jamaica. But on the negative side, you will not find many inexpensive restaurants near any of these hotels in MoBay. Half Moon has a shopping center with some expensive restaurants, and the Ritz-Carlton isn't really near anything but perhaps Scotchies, one of the best jerk restaurants in the area. This is one reason people often consider the all-inclusive experience. Most of the inexpensive restaurants in MoBay are in town, which is several miles away from most of the resorts and beaches.
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Old Feb 7th, 2010, 07:36 AM
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I have stayed at the Ritz, and would not return. The highlight was the good service and the White Witch golf course. As mentioned, the beach is very mediocre, practically seems man-made, the pool is nothing special and I guess I find the whole thing lacking in Caribbean personality, all one large building, formal in design, with no open-air feeling. If we return to the area, we'd choose Half Moon.
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Old Feb 8th, 2010, 08:49 AM
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I do appreciate all the helpful opinions. I had actually considered the Hilton Rose Hall, perhaps all-inclusive.
Another thought we had was to forget the beach all together and head up...all the way up to Strawberry Hill. The reviews at this resort make it sound divine.
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Old Feb 8th, 2010, 09:14 AM
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It's a wonderful place, though I don't know if you'd want to spend a whole week there. But for a super-luxurious hotel, I think it's a good deal. Gee-jam in Port Antonio might also be a possibility, though it's a little harder to get there. For these two, you'll probably want to fly into Kingston instead of MoBay, however.
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Old Feb 8th, 2010, 09:21 AM
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Doug-do you think we'd be bored? Perhaps we could split 3-4 days @ SHill and the remaining week on the beach?
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Old Feb 8th, 2010, 09:40 AM
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I'm not saying there's not anything to see in the highlands of Jamaica, but most vacationers aren't going to the Caribbean for the fresh mountain air. I think splitting up your trip would make some sense. Look at other Island Outpost properties. There are several good choices. I'd actually have suggested a combo of The Caves in Negril and Strawberry Hill, but the trip to Negril from the Blue Mountains is a daunting one by land (or an expensive charter flight).
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Old Feb 8th, 2010, 10:25 AM
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I see your point. I'll look further-I think after enjoying an all-inclusive up at SHill, I'll want the same on the beach
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Old Feb 8th, 2010, 05:09 PM
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take a look at delta vacations, there are some very good deals now. although i've only looked at negril for that time.
good luck.
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Old Feb 9th, 2010, 06:19 AM
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Thanks-I sure will.
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