RIU Palace Jamaica
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I’ve been traveling to Jamaica ever since I was 6 months old. Over my lifetime I’d say I’ve been to the island over three dozen times. I have seen the island transform from tiny roads to major highways. Every time I go back when the plane flies over the mountainside on its final approach, I feel like I’m home.
In July, we had the honor of standing up for our best friends to get married. I admit I was a little scared to travel with friends. 7 nights…8 days. Well, at least there were two other resorts next door if one of us had to escape for awhile. I’m happy to report that never happened. We are so blessed to have such wonderful friends we call our family. It’s hard to believe my best friend and I were in kindergarten through high school graduation and even Cosmetology school together, but we actually just discovered our friendship about a year and a half ago. As soon as she, her fiancé, my husband and I went out together, the rest is history. We have all been inseparable since.
This was the second time returning to the RIU Palace Jamaica in Montego Bay for all of us. In April 2016 my husband and I fell completely in love with this amazing resort. We loved it so much we told our friends who went in August of that year. They ultimately loved it so much they decided they wanted to get married there.
I want to say a few things about the island and the locals. The people of Jamaica are some of the most beautiful, genuine, kind-hearted people you will ever encounter. When my husband and I travel there we always bring a suitcase filled with items for the locals. We also make up gift bags for our housekeepers, they are so appreciative and really deserving of the hard work they do. We need to remember, WE are their livelihood. Many of the locals just want to share a smile and show you the crafts they’ve worked so hard on. If you feel like you’re being pressured just politely tell them you’ve been to Jamaica many times (even if you haven’t) and you have many souvenirs already. We all know “what else” you may be offered in Jamaica, and every time my response is the same…I tell them “No Thanks, I just quit last week.” LOL. Works every time and makes them laugh. Just like any other island, and just like here in the U.S.A., you should always be vigilant and aware of your surroundings.
I highly recommend Club Mobay when flying into MBJ – Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay. From the moment you walk off the airplane you are greeted by a guide who will escort you through immigration and customs. Depending on the day and time this process could take hours. But, with Club Mobay if there is a long line of people, you go right around that line. It’s kind of funny when everyone in that long line looks at you wondering who the heck you are to be getting the rockstar treatment. You are then whisked away quickly to the arrival lounge where you are served rum punch, beer, soda, and light appetizers while you wait for your transportation. Once your transportation has arrived they will escort you to your guide. When you purchase Club Mobay you can opt for just the arrival lounge, departure lounge or both. I suggest both of course, who wants to stand in lines when you could be enjoying lunch, and an unlimited open bar before you have to go back to reality. Click here to learn more about Club Mobay or to book!
Ok, now for the fun part…The RIU Palace Jamaica is just amazing. There are 3 RIU Resorts in Montego Bay, and they are all next to one another, just a short walk on the beach to each. The Palace is a fairly small resort with just 289 guest rooms. The resort is all-inclusive, adults only, there are 3 pools and 2 of them have swim-up bars! The guests staying at the other RIU properties are not allowed on Palace property but Palace guests may utilize the facilities of the other resorts. This includes the pools, entertainment, and dining. If you are looking for a party atmosphere though, this isn’t the place for you. One of the reasons we love the Palace is because it is quiet, luxurious, and laid back. The entertainment team does an amazing job during the day and at night, but it’s not “in your face” non-stop entertainment until 3:00 am. The party usually ends around midnight but the bar stays open 24 hours.
RIU Montego Bay which is the family-friendly resort is much larger with 681 guest rooms they also have a dance club and great entertainment productions on a larger scale. Here are a few pictures I took from the lobby at the RIU Montego Bay.
The other resort is the New RIU Reggae which is also an adults only resort. We didn’t spend very much time there, it was crowded and it was a lot more lively. Just not our scene. One night we walked over for dinner, we all agreed it wasn’t as impressive as our resort. If you like seafood there is always a great selection at the Palace, it seemed like there was less of a selection at the Reggae. As I mentioned before, our best friends chose the Palace for their wedding. Surprisingly, they do not have a salon or spa there so we did utilize the salon at the Reggae for hair and makeup. The spa at the Reggae is very small, there was only one girl to do both of our up-dos and make-up applications. It took a very long time, but’s she did do a nice job.
The food at the Palace was very good, my husband and I don’t care for buffets, at all. We were a little worried the first time we visited the resort. The RIU buffet is top notch. One night they even had all you can eat Lobster Tails! There are also 4 specialty restaurants included in your all-inclusive package at the Palace, a Steakhouse, Italian restaurant, Japanese restaurant, and a Fusion restaurant which was incredible! All of the photos I’ve included are from the buffet which was wonderful, plentiful and ever-changing every single day for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner.
The night before our friends got married they surprised us with this amazing dinner on the beach. This is not part of the package and is extra, but completely worth it. I will remember that night for the rest of my life. As you can see, it was stunning.
The wedding was beautiful and we had the time of our lives and we can’t wait to return to Jamaica. The RIU Palace is absolutely perfect for a quiet romantic getaway.
If you have any questions at all about the resort, area, etc. please contact me. Also, if you’ve been to Jamaica tell me what your favorite resort is in the comments!