Very enjoyable stay at Negril Escape
Third attempt to post this report - hopefully 3 times is a charm! Unfortunately not! Oh well I cannot seem to get the photos to post. SO....
We spent the second half of our Negril trip at Negril Escape Resort (first half at Rondel Village). Somehow I managed to post the Rondel review, but forgot to post the Negril Escape portion, I typed it months ago! So this trip was in early June 06, sorry for the delayed review.
On the morning we were headed to Negril Escape, I requested a driver to take us to the cliffs. This is when I realized that the name Negril Escape was really very very new to Negril. Thankfully I had learned of the name change through my research, since I continued to realize many of the locals were yet to become familiar with the change. I always had to tell them “the old Mariners Inn on the cliffs”
Reluctantly I admit that I was skeptical of this hotel, new name, not many reviews, etc. All my emails were answered promptly, it came highly recommended, my girls loved the new website and pictures, so I booked it.
Immediately upon arrival I knew I had found a gem – we all fell in love with the place!
Joy at the front desk was so nice and friendly, just like running into an old friend, check in was filled with laughter. Welcome drinks were delivered and then Rebah happened into the front desk area, we were fast engaged in conversation, friendly but not intruding.
Off to the rooms – but we have so many things to look at and our excitement is getting the best of us. WOW look at the sea! Finally we arrive at our building – again can’t get over this place. Loved our room! Loved our view! OK just really loving everything!
We stayed in the “Passage to India” building. We had the upstairs rooms. I am not going to go into a lot about the rooms, as the website pictures are very accurate. I will say that management was still working to put in coffeemakers and mini fridges. I had taken my travel coffeemaker, but did request a refrigerator. The room was comfortable, the bathroom very large. (Oh if it is stormy and the power goes off, so does the water, but the AC still works!)
We met Shirley in the restaurant, what a pleasant person she is! I spent a lot of time talking with Shirley and learning of the very many changes that had taken place around the property. Listening to the stories about the destruction and rebuilding. It still amazes me.
The pool had been refurbished, the outdoor furniture replaced, the vast stone deck area completely replaced, many of the stone walls had been rebuilt, new stairs put in, the lighthouse had been partially rebuilt, a new lighthouse type structure was built for the spa area, a new bar was in the building stage, some of the buildings were still under renovations. This place has pretty much been totally rebuilt or refurbished. The buildings are so pretty, fresh and brightly painted.
Much of the grounds had to be replanted, and the job they were doing with the grounds is awesome. They had planted everything from tropical flowers, to corn, beans, tomatoes and much much more! The gardens were already beautiful.
A bit about the layout of the resort. Spa, lighthouse and deck areas all along the Cliffside, restaurant set back from the deck area. All of these areas have awesome panoramic views! Going on back toward the road, is the dive center, offices and reception. East from the restaurant is the pool and the rooms. Pool is in front of the Orient Express building. The most direct ocean view buildings are Orient Express, Passage to India, Romancing the Kasba and Back to Africa. The row of buildings just behind these all have a water view, but not unobstructed. They are Royal Jamaica (was unfinished), Coconut Grove, Country Cottage and Atlantis. Then set a bit further back are two 3 story buildings that had yet to be finished.
Everyone here was extremely pleasant and was happy to go above and beyond the call of duty. For example, Shirley walked with us one day to the craft vendor stalls across from RockHouse. Sharing information, pointing out things, it was like we had known her forever. Teresa put minutes on her cell phone for me to use to call my husband, I insisted on making the call on the land line and paying the charges, but she insisted on me using her cell! Even came to me later in our stay to offer her phone again. One morning, Shirley overheard me say that I wanted to go back to Rick’s and get a gift, but it rained all day, later in the day she found me, to tell me she had their driver available to take me to Rick’s whenever I would like to go – I was amazed and couldn’t believe she had gone out of her way to do this for us and to top it off she went with me! Rebah sent dominoes up to our room for the girls on the day that it rained. Things like this happened all the time! Everyone going out of their way to make certain our stay was perfect!
Pretty much we had breakfast and lunch here each day, all were tasty. And try a chocolate milkshake, my daughters are convinced these are the best in the world! We were very content to just hang out and relax on the decks. However, we did walk to some shops, then to Pirates Cave for dinner one evening and to watch the cliff divers, the divers were exciting to watch, but the food was so so and the service seemed uninspired. Made reservations at RockHouse for dinner one night, they picked us up, the food was delicious and service were delightful. Walked to Ricks to see the divers and listen to the band, this was fun, the music was great, the crowd was too large. Otherwise we just enjoyed being at Negril Escape.
The girls loved snorkeling off the cliffs, I loved being able to sit quietly and read a book. We all enjoyed the pool, the quiet and the serenity of this place. My daughters were just as content and happy as I was. We all loved the relaxing, lazy feel of this place.
I knew I would enjoy this pace, but was very surprised to learn that my teenage daughters enjoyed the quietness of the cliffs over the hustle and bustle of the beach!
Would we go back? ABSOLUTELY!
Something for everyone
When Chris suggested that we go to Jamaica, my first thought was of all-inclusive resorts. Depending on what you want from a holiday, these can be fine (we stayed in one for a few days at the end of our Cuba trip, and it was quite nice to be pampered) but I don’t think they’re a good way to really see a country. For one thing, when you’ve paid in advance for all the facilities of the resort, the temptation is never to leave it. I also get the impression that people staying in these resorts in Jamaica are advised that it isn’t safe to go outside – in our experience this is b******t, probably designed to keep you there and spending more money!
So what’s the alternative? Well, I was surprised to find when I started my research quite a number of Bed & Breakfast establishments on the island, and the one we chose for our first destination, the Blue House in Ocho Rios, turned out to be a real gem. Run on similar lines to US B&Bs we’ve stayed in, this was the ideal place to meet some local people and like-minded fellow travellers, and our time here got our Jamaican trip off to the best possible start.
In Negril we chose a hotel, but a simpler one, with a bed & breakfast only option, freeing us up to discover different restaurants each evening and spend our days exploring the island. While not of the standard of the Blue House, the Negril Escape also proved to be a good choice, with a great location on Negril’s scenic cliffs.
Just opposite the Negril Escape is this little shack that sells various lunchtime snacks at very reasonable prices. We bought some patties here one day to take back and eat on our balcony. They were huge – mine with cheese and vegetables, Chris’s with beef. At just 250 Jamaican dollars (about US$4) we considered this a real bargain.
Can't Wait to Go Back!
My fiance and I stayed at Negril Escape a few weeks ago. We were in Negril looking for a site with beautiful views and an attentive staff for our wedding; we definitely found this at Negril Escape and can't wait to have our wedding there in July.
Relaxing, friendly, peaceful
My husband and I had previously travelled only all inclusive, so this was a different experience for us. We found the Negril Escape lovely, the staff at the front desk very friendly and helpful, and the setting tranquil. Our room was the kasba, beautiful, with vaulted ceiling, a fan, a/c and best of all a great view of the sea...We were in Jamacia last year, at an all inclusive resort, which was perhaps technically more modern and "nice" but not nearly as interesting and charming and tranquil.Also, this encouraged us to go out and explore Jamaica, which we were discouraged from doing previously. Alan, the driver, was helpful in many ways, and I'd like to say thank you to him, and all of the others at Negril Escape who helped make our stay easy, and pleasant, and most of all, safe......
My daughters wedding
My daughter and her husband chose this location for their wedding. They wanted to be married on a cliff overlooking the ocean at sunset. The resort did an excellent job of providing the wedding they wanted. They had been to Jamaica earlier in the year to choose their location and Negril Escape is the place they decided on. Close to 35 family members and friends came to the wedding and we were all received with hospitality and open arms. Everything was perfect. The arrangement and placement of the chairs for the wedding, the food, entertainment and the service.
I would love to go back some day.
WOW - What a Gem!
My wife and I have been vacationing in the West End of Negril for the past 12 years at a hotel down the street from Negril Escape. This year, the other hotel "lost" our reservations and we had to scramble to find a substitute. What we found was Negril Escape. WOW! What an improvement over our previous hotel.
Firstly, the front desk was extremely friendly, courteous, and catered to our every wish. Teresa, Nekeisha and Suzette made us feel as though we had been their guest for many years. When they discovered that it was our anniversary, they even surprised us with a special gift in our room. This warmth and hospitality was also extended to us by the maids, waitstaff, security, and even the groundskeepers!
Now for the site....The gardens are well maintained and beautiful with flowers, banana trees and more. The natural cliffs really complete the lovely setting. There is plenty of shade provided by thatched umbrellas and comfortable chairs and lounges with cushions. The dim lighting at night is great since it allows for romantic star-gazing!
The morning breakfast buffet provided a wide variety of local and traditional foods, including fresh fruit every day. Even though the on-site restaurant served great food, we like to explore for dinner and enjoyed the fact that there were many of our local (inexpensive), favorite restaurants within walking distance.
Unlike many hotels in Jamaica, management at the Negril Escape is committed to continually improving their property and they were genuinely interested in feedback. We will be another one of their many repeat guests and will surely bring friends!
true "jamaican" resort !!!
we just returned from negril escape yesterday and we had a wonderful time !! this plase is a "natural" paradise !! the people are so friendly. we had an un-obstructed view of the sea (kazba building),as well as a front porch with 2 chairs, and a palapa with 2 beach chairs. sure there is no beach but the coral and cliffs do just fine. this is real jamaica ,deal with it, you might have a good time!! walk to the local restaraunts, have a red stripe at a local bar, get away from the all-inclusives!
the ladies at the front desk could not have been friendlier, they have a private driver to take you out and bring you back, the bar staff and waitrices are so friendly, you will know them by name and they will know yours too.(big up alrick at the bar, we really enjoyed our time with you. these people make you feel at home, from letting me use their cell phone to make calls to the states, to free trips to the beach for the sister property, even to one waitress personally knocking on our door to wake us for the free breakfast (we were out late and didnt want to miss it,so we asked her too the day before)
this place is not the ritz...If you want to stay on a stuffy property and never see jamaica, or meet "real" jamaicans, then stay somewhere for triple the price, buy some "ya mon" t-shirts, a bottle of appleton rum and tell all your friends you have been to jamaica ...if you really know what it is about.....chech this place out....respect
we have been to jamaica 12 times and really enjoy our trips there. we have meet many friends and visit them every time we come. if you have any questions please dont hesitate to ask us for we have stayed at many all-inclusives and many small inns. we can even hook you up with the best, safest, reliable driver on the island to take you from the airport to the hotel, as well as tours...john and regina, baltimore md. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
At the Negril Escape
Cliffs at the Negril Escape
Negril Escape at night
Cat by the pool at Negril Escape