Today was an exciting day where we got to go visit two other Sandals Resorts – Sandals Royal Caribbean and Sandals Carlyle. Our day started with a quick shuttle ride over to Sandals Royal Caribbean (not even a 10 min. ride from Montego Bay). When you stay at any of these three resorts in MoBay you get the “Stay at 1, Play at 3” privileges! This allows you to take advantage of your own resort restaurants, lounges and activities as well as the other two Sandals properties close by. This gives you a total of 18 restaurants and 14 bars to choose from!
We had a quick breakfast at the Regency, which is buffet-style restaurant that overlooks the ocean and Sandals Cay. Sandals Cay is a private island just off-shore that houses the Royal Thai Restaurant. We’re very excited to have reservations there at 7pm tonight!
We started our tour with the Mr. O’Brian and had a great time discovering the property. It is a beautiful resort with 197 rooms and suites in 15 different room categories. It features the romantic Grande Romeo & Juliet Honeymoon Swim-up One Bedroom Crystal Lagoon Suites. These stunning rooms have a patio that leads directly into a lagoon pool for a private access point from your room. Great for Honeymooners! We noticed that there were quite a few smaller, intimate pools around the resort great for a private, romantic dip with your loved one. The beach had a couple smaller cove beaches, but seemed to attract more of the clients that preferred the pool than the beach. The main pool had a swim-up bar as did the pool located on Sandals Cay. Also, a side note for the adventurous ones: There is a clothing optional sunbathing area located on the private island for those who wish to skip the tan lines!
Next, we caught a quick ride to Sandals Carlyle. This resort is a smaller, charming, boutique hotel that has 52 rooms in 4 different categories. It lends a great location for those wanting to hit up the Hip Strip (aka…where Margaritaville is located!) and still shares the exchange privileges with Royal Caribbean and Montego Bay. Yes, it is a smaller resort with only one pool and no connecting beach (although there is a small public beach across the road), but I was shocked by the level of personalized customer service given to the guests at this resort. Everywhere you looked there was a staff member talking and laughing with a guest. While on our tour, Miss Lisa (the hotel manager), said hello to every guest that passed by and greeted them by name…amazing! Many of the guests here are loyal returning customers and I’m guessing they will be quickly greeted by name the next time they walk through the doors!
We shuttled back to Sandals Montego Bay and grabbed a quick lunch at Bayside. Then, we hit the pool to soak up some of the sunshine and down a few Rum Runners…ahh…relaxing! After floating around for a while and meeting some honeymooners at the swim-up bar, we went back to the rooms to change and get ready for our dinner at the Royal Thai at Sandals Royal Caribbean.
The shuttle took us to the Royal Caribbean, where we boarded an exotic Dragon Boat to get to Sandals Cay. I have to admit, the experience of boarding an exotic boat all dressed up for dinner on a private island is pretty darn exciting! Once the boat captain welcomed us to the island, we were directed to stop by the bar for a cocktail and then we were quickly seated in a beautiful open air restaurant featuring an authentic Thai experience. After dinner, we decided to explore a little bit. The island was romantically lit with blazing tiki torches and had little, intimate sitting areas, hammocks, and fire pits scattered throughout. We swung in a hammock together listening to the waves crash on the shore. Sharing the moment and thinking of how lucky we are to have each other, laying here in paradise together without the stress of everyday life. Something we definitely don’t do often enough!
We took the Dragon Boat back to Sandals Royal Caribbean and caught the shuttle back to Sandals Montego Bay just in time to catch some of the last acts of their Beach Party that was taking place. The energy was high as people cheered and gasped as the entertainers juggled sticks of fire and blew huge bursts of flames from their mouths. Such a cool experience! They had dancers, contortionists, jugglers, games and competitions going on throughout the night.
Since I had some work to catch up on, I grabbed my laptop and sat out on the sundeck listening to the ocean waves and background noise of steel drums as I typed away! Thinking…I love my job…
~Stacey Tsepelis Ackley