June 26th, 2012, 07:32 PM
12 times Repeater review.....
So I've seen CSA change alot in the 10 years I've been visiting. Some changes were nice while others are still not the same, not really bad just different. Here's my take on what I like, what I'm used to and the small things I see.
The lounge at Mobay is really nice. We never wait very long for our bus ride and they handle the process pretty well. I always just watch my luggage and when it starts being handled I just follow it. Make sure and have those ones handy for the porters and bus drivers. The road is amazing compared to 10 years ago and I love to see how things change along the way. Some drivers are super careful and some are a little on the crazy side. On the return trip to Mobay this year I must say the driver was downright scary, probably the worst in all the trips. They do need to weed out the not so careful drivers, he was crazy.
The greeting when you drive up is so very nice, smiling faces, cold wash clothes and bubbly. If you arrive early just lock up your purse and etc in work out facilities across the road, works really nice. Be foerwarned that check in is 3 and it will more than likely be around that time before you have a room. They kinda of pre assign you a room and if you ask for something else, certain location, block number or room # there might be a delay in getting that room. I knew a room # that gave me an ocean view (booked Atrium) and it was going to be ava so I opted to wait for that room. I arrived at 12 and checked into my room around 3 or so, while friends who got there around 2 went straight to their room because they had no special request.
I love the way the original rooms are made, simple, full of character and so extremely tropical. However they are showing some wear and tear. Nothing major, just simple stuff that probably needs to be maintained a little more often. The lamps are the same lamps that have been there for 10 years (old section) and they are very much CSA however with as much as they are handled both ours were broken and the lamp shade would fall off it you weren't carefull. Ceiling fans are really nice in the rooms , but ours only worked on high, had a low and medium setting just didn't work. Nothing to make or break my vacation, just what I noticed. Housekeeping is great and the rooms always look so nice and are so very clean for being in the tropics on a beach. Big up to housekeeping! Ask them for something or write a note with a certain request and it would get done.
Service is top notch! 99.9% of all the staff is over the top friendly and on their game. There is the one or two that they are just doing their job, not mean or rude just indifferent. No worries, they are the ones that won'
t stick around and the 99.9% that are great are the ones you will see year after year and they will become your friends. We now have friends that we met on visit number one. Rule of thumb....they work very hard and a little respect from us goes a long way. Treat them as you want to be treated and the world is happy place. Big Up to the Staff!
Seven mile beach.....what a piece of paradise where CSA ended up! It's been said a million times, what the ocean takes it gives back. The width of the beach is never the same, more shallow in some parts , very wide in others.....it's called Mother Nature. What doesn't change is the color of the water, the clarity and the amazing views. Big Up to Mother Nature, your work is breathtaking!
Entertainment......it is what you make it and what you like or don't like. They have options and a schedule for you to look at it, either pick to be a part of it or not. As an old school CSA repeater I loved the way it was before the expansion of the property, some things I just can't adjust to the change. It's just me......Still have an amazing time; just liked a few thing better before.
As far as what is my fav place. spot, bar or restaurant.....no more! I would often walk to one of my fav bars and there would already be a ton of people there ( used to have it pretty much to myself). So busy that my good friend said "What are all these people doing at our bar"! On the day of arrival I wanted to make reservations at my favorite restaurant and couldn't get in until 4 days into my trip, unheard of.....have never had that problem. So my fav spots or things will remain a secret....
FYI......be nice and polite to those you meet along the way, other travelers and CSA staff. Every trip I see people who are just down right rude to everyone around them. It's sad to see a CSA staff just have to take it and keep smiling while everyone else knows they are being treated in just a rude mean manner. The walkways at CSA were made to fit the size of the old property, but not really to fit the new size. Be polite, make way for people walking in the other direction. I often see people who have to step into the sand because others won't give on the walkway. The Golden Rule...treat others as you would like to be treated.
Happy travels to all!
Trip 13 soon come!
Jamerican T/ Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr and Rasta Rod!
June 27th, 2012, 09:32 AM
Great review, glad you had a good time. Good advice about being nice. I have seen this at other vacation spots and always wonder if some people just think they are more entitled or just wake up mean. Watched a lady tell a chef they were stupid in Mexico because the buffet items were not listed in French and then she just bumped right into other guests in line to reach over them. If you go with a great attitude and respect I think you can have a great vacation. When we went to CSA there were a few minor things like the reservations but nothing to stop us from enjoying ourselves.
Definitely agree with you about the beach. When we visited CSA there was a tropical storm the week before and we were told the beach was a lot smaller than usual - we would never have known a difference - it was still perfect, plenty of space, shade, and no seaweed.
June 27th, 2012, 10:07 AM
Thanks for the detailed post. I have been a fan of CSA since before it was rebranded as a Couples and also prefer the "old days" when the resort was smaller and Feathers was across the street.
We are only able to visit for 3 or 4 nights so the situation with the reservations for 2 restaurants has the potential for disappointment for those of us with shorter stays. At least CSA has Patios and not just The Palms and then there is always the chance to go off resort for dinner which we do enjoy doing.
I completely agree about the rooms and hope that management addresses this soon. We also prefer the original section and these are the rooms most in need of a sprucing up.
There is just something about CSA that has always been special to me and I take a deep breath as soon as we pull up to the entrance and I see the words "Swept Away" - it is not many places that have that effect on me. And the beach and ocean remain a huge draw.
We are headed back in 8 weeks, having just changed our reservation from CN to CSA on Monday. While we were disappointed in aspects of our last visit to CSA last year, it remains a pretty special place. I knew that if we were at CN (which er enjoy) I would still regret not being at CSA.
June 27th, 2012, 10:44 AM
Mrs. dirtleg and I agreed this was perhaps our best trip yet. Very relaxed and lots of laughs. Yes, reservations seem to be more diffficult than they were years ago and our favorite bar seems to be the favorite of lots of people now days. But still... there is no place quite like it. They can't change the beach nor the Jamaican people, and both are treasures that make the trip so special to us as well. Hey, Seagrapes was always available! And our lunch soup secret is safe for now.
We are booked, see you next year!!
June 27th, 2012, 01:25 PM
Rrrrrr - it's so nice to see you back on the MB and to get your perspective. We have been going to CSA since 2005, not as long as you, but before the Greathouse was built. I do miss when Ulti played upstairs from the Palms. Alternatively, I can't imagine not having Patois as a dining choice - it's such a terrific addition.
I know that they are slowly updating the rooms, and of course they have kept up to date on things like flat screen TVs. But it would be nice if they updated things like the lamps, the bathrooms, and drawer space (we stay for 10 days and we never have enough drawer space).
June 27th, 2012, 01:33 PM
Thanks for the review. I never thought about stowing my purse in a locker at the Spa at CTI. I may check that out on Saturday. We are due to arrive about 11:15 which puts us at the resort at around 1:30 and our room has never been ready.
June 27th, 2012, 08:19 PM
Originally Posted by Rrrrrrrrr
Awesome post. It's true that you should be respectful, in fact friendly, to people who's job it is to serve you. It pays dividends for everybody.
After all, it's vacation and should be enjoyable.
I'm looking forward to mine towards the end of July!
June 29th, 2012, 04:46 PM
Thanks for the wonderful review. I, too, am a long-time Couples repeater so I wholeheartedly support your comments about showing respect to the employees. They are like close friends or family to me. Even if there is a new employee, that's a new member to my family. I love talking to them about their family, home, traditions. It's such a beautiful experience.