One winter, we decided it would be great to take a trip to Jamaica for some R&R after all the holiday craziness. While researching all-inclusive spots in Jamaica, we came across Sandals.
Sandals is a collection of luxury all-inclusive resorts for couples. Designed for romance, Sandals resorts focus on giving you and your special someone some relaxing quality time together (all while being pampered by luxurious accommodations, amenities, and service).
After a fun (but hectic) holiday season, this seemed like just the place to unwind and spend some couple time. So we booked a week-long stay at Sandals Ochi in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.
Here’s all about our experience at Sandals Ochi. TL:DR – skip to the end for the short version of the Sandals Ochi Review!
Sandals Ochi Review:
I’ll be honest with you — when we’re traveling, rarely are we picky about the accommodations themselves. Usually we’re out exploring, so we don’t spend much time in the room.
That being said, we were looking to lounge on our trip to Jamaica, and the accommodations didn’t disappoint. We booked aRiviera Bamboo Grove Luxury room, which is one level about base-level room. Sandals Ochi offers several room options, from basic garden-view rooms to suites with private pools and butlers.
We choose our room because it was the cheapest option available at the time (the base-level rooms were booked). However, it certainly didn’t feel like it!
The room was spacious, super clean, and comfortable! It had just the right balance of comfort and luxury.
Sandals Ochi is a large resort — with 16 restaurants, how could it not be?! The resort is divided into two sections: the Caribbean Riviera and the Butler Village & Great House. We booked the Caribbean Riviera section, as it was the side with the beach and was less expensive. Our room was in a great location. We were garden view, which meant we were close to one of the smaller, quieter pools, and a quick walk to everything else we needed, like the beach, the main pool, and tons of restaurants.
Wayward Tip: If you want to be close to the beach and all the action, choose the Riviera side. The Butler Village & Great House is across the main road, making it more removed from the heart of the resort. It’s quieter and more luxurious for sure, but lacks the energy of the beach area. It’s all about what vibe you’re chasing.
Sandals Ochi has a wide variety of amenities that fit all sorts of travelers, from adventure seekers to beach bums. With 16 restaurants, we didn’t even get to cover them all during our stay! Not that it mattered to us… everywhere we ate was delicious.
Aside from it’s food, Sandals Ochi boasts the Caribbean’s first speakeasy. It may sound campy, but it was actually one of our favorite parts of the resort! In order to get in, you have to ask a staff member for the password of the day. The entrance is slightly hidden, and the inside feels like something out of an old gangster movie. The night we went, an incredible jazz singer performed.
Like other all-inclusive resorts, Sandals Ochi offers a lot of activities throughout the day, from salsa lessons to themed parties. The resort features over 105 pools (when you count the private pools that are included with the Butler suites), and non-motorized water sports are included in your package — we did the water bikes, which were tons of fun!
Sandals Ochi also has a an 18-hole golf course, spa, fitness center, tennis courts, volleyball courts, bag toss area, and more. There really is something for everyone on the resort.
Wayward Tip: Eat at the sushi restaurant. It’s to die for.
Sandals is known for the superior service, and the service at Sandals Ochi didn’t disappoint. Everyone from the servers to the golf cart drivers to the entertainment staff were friendly, helpful, and incredibly welcoming. The staff at Sandals Ochi truly made our stay there even more fun and exciting because of how invested they were in the guests’ time. Everyone prioritizes having fun, relaxing, and just enjoying your time in the Caribbean!
From our very first interaction at check in to our very last at check out, we had nothing but exemplary service at Sandals Ochi.
Now, it wouldn’t be a true Sandals Ochi review if we didn’t talk about price. Full disclosure: Sandals is definitely the most expensive all-inclusive resort we’ve stayed in to date. Yet while we were a little hesitant about the price, we definitely felt it was worth every dollar we spent once we experienced the resort. They say you get what you pay for, and at Sandals Ochi, it’s definitely true.
We booked online through their chat system with an agent, which I recommend doing if you tend to suffer from option overload like I do. In doing so, we were able to take advantage of the 55% off discount on our rooms, a $35 book online discount, and $350 flight discount, and a free couples’ massage. Sandals also gave us the option to pay our balance over two months as long as we put a deposit down to hold the room.
If you’re looking for a cheap Caribbean getaway, Sandals probably isn’t for you. However, if you want to splurge on a weeklong luxury vacation without totally destroying your savings account, Sandals definitely makes it possible. Plus, they’re always running amazing sales, so you’re bound to catch a great deal.
Wayward Tip: Don’t want to pay for your flight? See my post on racking up skymiles to fly for free.
TL;DR: The Final Verdict
Between the superior service, delicious food, and activities out the wazoo, we couldn’t have chosen a better place to spend a week in Ocho Rios than Sandals Ochi. While the price tag is a bit higher than other all-inclusive resorts, it’s by no means exorbitant — you get everything you pay for and more during your stay there.
This wanderer rates Sandals Ochi a 5 out of 5 on the Wander Scale.