Long weekend in Jamaica.. please advise!?

Jul 19th, 2010, 07:58 PM
  #1  
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Long weekend in Jamaica.. please advise!?

A couple of my friends and I just booked flights to Jamaica for a long weekend in Sept. Totally random and none of us have been. We're flying into MB and are trying to make the most of our time. We're not trying to splurge but don't want to go really cheap either. Somewhere in the middle. We've decided AI is going to be the best idea for us and have been looking at places like the Grand Palladium, Rose Hall Resort, etc... not seeing good reviews and would like a little more beach than some of these seem to offer. Any advice would be so appreciated. So tired of looking! And I know I sound like an idiot... don't judge
jjones is offline  
Jul 19th, 2010, 08:02 PM
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Why don't you go out to Negril? There are lots of decent all-inclusives there along the gorgeous 7-mile beach. It's 90 mins from the airport at Montego Bay, but well worth the trip imho. I used Clive's and it's only $20usd per person for the ride.

I just got back last night from 10 days there and had an absolutely amazing time. I don't go AI, so can't help with those specifics, but read up on Negril is my best suggestion. It's a very unique and wonderful place to visit.
suze is offline  
Jul 20th, 2010, 06:19 AM
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I bought spur of the moment tickets to MB a few weeks ago. We're heading to Negril. There are dozens of small hotels on the beach, we're staying at Bar-B-Barn, deluxe room with fridge and a/c for US$70.00 a night.
JeanH is offline  
Jul 20th, 2010, 04:12 PM
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Thanks! Yeah, from reading other posts, everyone seems to suggest Negril. I'll start checking into that. Thanks for the responses!
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Jul 20th, 2010, 06:10 PM
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suze- i'm happy to hear you had a great time on the cliffs. (i knew you would!) what about the mirage, would you stay there again?
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Jul 20th, 2010, 08:20 PM
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check out cocolapalm mid beach in Negril. Centrally located and the price will be right with a staff that is the best on the beach. I am a regular visitor there. I Can line you up with transportation as well if you are interested. But Negril is the only choice in my opinion.
CaribbeanSoul is offline  
Jul 21st, 2010, 06:21 AM
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pwj~ Mirage worked out great for me. As far as staying there again, I'm not sure when I'll get back to Negril. It's a LONG way from Seattle for me (I was there for a reunion with mostly people from 'back east').

It's a calm and quiet hotel. Very clean. Reminded me more of a place in Mexico than Caribbean (tile floors, wrought iron railings, etc.). So it doesn't have the buzz factor like Tensing Pen, Catcha, Banana Shout, Citronella (where you find paths thru gardens, colorful cabins, etc.)

The room was perfect with a large private patio and view of the ocean. Cable TV, small frig, coffeemaker, safe, air-con, ceiling fan, king-sized four-poster bed. The place was recently remodeled. The pool is huge, fresh water.

I have a trip report posted over on Trip Advisor's Negril forum.

For someone new to Negril though, I think I might suggest staying on the beach instead. Depending what they are seeking, the "cliffs" area can be a bit removed from the action.

I used Clive's for my airport transportation and they were excellent. Only $20 per person for the 90 mins. drive out from the airport to Negril. You reserved online in advance, but paid the driver upon arrival.
suze is offline  
Jul 21st, 2010, 06:23 AM
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It's not at AI but the sister hotel (same owner) of Mirage called 'Charela Inn' on the beach is a very nice hotel. I spent a day there, courtesy of Mirage.
suze is offline  
Jul 21st, 2010, 01:24 PM
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Another vote for Coco La Palm. By far, the nicest part of the beach and best staff! Just make sure to reserve an upper floor room, since the ones at ground level (especially the standard rooms) can be sub-par.
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Jul 21st, 2010, 04:26 PM
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we've stayed at coco twice and it is good, but if you can get a room at idle awhile that would be my choice. we stayed there and at tensing pen in april. from here on our choice is idle awhile (on the beach) or tensing pen (on the cliffs). this was our 7th trip to jamaica and we think the most relaxing yet. these are not a/i but you will spend about the same and see more of negril.
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Jul 21st, 2010, 04:28 PM
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I dunno, pwj, Tensing Pen is a lovely place, but really *nothing* like the AI hotels this poster mentions originally. It's pretty rustic there and I'm not sure would be to most people's taste, quite honestly.
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Jul 21st, 2010, 04:54 PM
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there are so many great non inclusives on 7 mile that i would'nt bother with the a/i's. the first 2 times we stayed at swept away (a/i) it is a great place but you feel kind of stuck there. just my opinion, not everyone may feel this way.
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Jul 21st, 2010, 05:02 PM
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I personally agree with you and never stay all-inclusve myself. But I've learned from reading these forums, when people have their mind made up that AI is going to be the "best idea" they probably have their reasons for that choice.
suze is offline  
Jul 21st, 2010, 05:14 PM
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enjoyed your trip report on t/a !
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Jul 21st, 2010, 06:10 PM
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I wouldn't bother with an AI, either. There are so many cheap restaurants on the beach and cliffs, and half the fun of being in Negril is meeting the locals at the restaurants.
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Jul 21st, 2010, 06:11 PM
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Just wanted to add that I've never been able to get a reservation in season at IDLE AWHILE, but if I could, I would probably choose it over COCO. Same great part of the beach, but more up-to-date accommodations at IDLE AWHILE. At least that's what it looked like when I was given a tour of the property.
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Jul 22nd, 2010, 05:55 AM
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hey thanks (for the nice comment about my TA trip report)! for others reading here, the Negril forum at Trip Advisor is a very good group of people who know their stuff. they really helped me iron out my plans for the trip I just got back from.
suze is offline  
Jul 22nd, 2010, 05:36 PM
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Wow! Thanks, this is really helpful. I'm honestly not set on AI, so I'm definitely about to look into these places right now. I may also be requesting info on these recommended drivers!
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Jul 23rd, 2010, 07:54 AM
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well I say if we can get to Negril & to not go all-inclusive... we've just improved your vacation plans 100% -lol!
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Jul 24th, 2010, 09:22 AM
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As the tourism board slogan says "Once you go, you know".
CaribbeanSoul is offline  
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