Of the English speaking Caribbean islands, Jamaica attracts the most stay-over tourists each year. With beautiful white sand beaches and a range of adventure, culture, and historical attractions, 2.5 million visitors vacation in major Jamaican cities, including Kingston, Negril, Ocho Rios, and Montego Bay, popularly called Mobay. Montego Bay is Jamaica’s tourism capital and the second-largest city with some of the most beautiful beach resorts along with a major cruise port and international airport. So, where should you stay in Montego Bay, Jamaica? Below I highlight three Montego Bay hotels after my recent visit to Jamaica.
Where To Stay in Montego Bay, Jamaica
Zoetry Montego Bay
First up on places to stay in Montego Bay is Zoetry Montego Bay, a small luxurious boutique hotel located on a private stretch of white sand beach in the Rose Hall neighborhood. Zoetry Montego Bay has just 49 air-conditioned oceanfront suites, each with a king-size bed, or two double beds, and a private balcony or patio. Zoetry Montego Bay has three restaurants (Coyaba, Canoa, and Polo Restaurant & Lounge) along with Aroma Cafe and Jerk Jo’s for some delicious Jamaican Jerk food! There are also four bars throughout the resort (Canoa Bar, Polo Bar, Coyaba Bar, and Harmony Lobby Bar). Other amenities at Zoetry Montego Bay surrounded by lush greenery include an infinity pool, full-service spa with outdoor whirlpools, small fitness center, and onsite water sports center. There are also daily beach, land, and water activities such a yoga, rum/wine tastings, cooking lessons, dance lessons, and shopping excursions. Zoetry Montego Bay is ideal for solo travelers and those seeking a smaller resort as a base for exploring Montego Bay and further afield in Jamaica.
Sandals Montego Bay
The second hotel I’d recommend in Montego Bay is Sandals Montego Bay. Known as The Flagship, Sandals Montego Bay is the original hotel under the Sandals Resorts brand which has been voted as the Caribbean’s leading hotel brand for the last 25 years by the World Travel Awards. Located on one of the longest private white sand beaches on the north coast of Jamaica, Sandals Montego Bay with 5-star luxury has 272 rooms and suites in 27 room categories. Spread over 26 acres of lush green landscape, Sandals Montego Bay has twelve restaurants, six bars, seven freshwater pools, three whirlpools, a large fitness center. The all-inclusive adults-only resort also has a Red Lane Spa and watersport center for daily scuba diving and snorkeling or other watersports, including kayaking, windsurfing, Hobie Cats, and paddleboards. Sandals Montego Bay, which is beautifully decorated and maintained to a high standard, is ideal for couples on honeymoons or those seeking a romantic vacation.
Note: Just a short 10-minute drive away from Sandals Montego Bay is another high profile Sandals Resorts property, Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort & Private Island with the much talked about over-the-water bungalows. On 15 acres of land, this Sandals Resorts has a Georgian-style Great House at its center and is perhaps a bit more intimate than Sandals Montego Bay– though there are 227 rooms and suites over 24 categories and similar level amenities. Beyond is British Manor design, the Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort & Private Island location might also appeal as it is further away from the airport. However, the beach is not as long and broken into small sectional coves.
Half Moon Jamaica
Half Moon Jamaica is an iconic Caribbean 5-star luxury resort spread over 400 acres with two miles of private white sand beach. It has about 398 rooms, suites, and villas, many with their own pools. Half Moon Jamaica currently has eight bars and six restaurants though this is slated to increase with their new Eclipse at Half Moon wing opening March 2020. Beyond the wide-ranging dining options (offering Caribbean, Italian, International cuisine, etc.), there is also a fitness center, along with courts for basketball, volleyball, squash, and tennis. Half Moon Jamaica also has a kid’s club, large spa, equestrian center, and an 18-hole golf course. With all the amenities, it has much to offer solo travelers as well as couples and families.
Zoetry Montego Bay, Sandals Montego Bay, and Half Moon Jamaica are all relatively close to Sangster International Airport (MBJ), so you don’t have to waste precious vacation time transferring. That said, there are other highly rated Montego Bay Hotels to consider like Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall, Hilton Rose Hall Resort & Spa, Secrets Montego Bay, and Round Hill Hotel and Villas. These and more, I hope to stay at on future trips to Montego Bay, Jamaica.
Ursula Petula Barzey
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