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  1. #1

    Default A LOT of Questions

    hello, my FI and I, along with four other couples are planning a trip this July for my FI's 30th birthday. I have been doing a lot of research between S and the Couples resorts and I think I have pretty much chosen to stay at one of the Couples resorts. However, one of my co-workes just returned from CSA after 13days and tells me that MANY of the guests are "repeat offenders" as she and her husband are and therefore the staff know them by first names and this is the major reason they return each year-sometimes two and three times per year. My co-worked explained to me that there is nothing fancy or out of the ordinary about the resort that any other resort does not have. When she compared it to S, she said the S is very fancy and "upscale" and more for a younger crowd-such as my age. My co-worker is in her early 50's and her husband is in his late 50's. She explained that the same people return each year around the same time and that its like one big "family". With that being said, I dont want to feel like an "outsider" being this my first time. Also, I am concerned about the night life (after midnight). I was geared toward CSA, however...now I am not sure. Here is what I am looking for...a clean, nice-not OVER THE TOP suite but nice & clean. While I am very close with my co-workers, we are just that...co-workers. Her age makes is almost impossible for us to be friends outside of work (two totally different views of life--decades apart) thus I wouldnt want to vacation with her. I would like a nice night life...if not on the resort, close enough to get to and back. Excursions....and GOOD food-not buffet style either. I dont really care if the beach if GREAT or just good! Which resort is best here for me...keep in mind there will be a group of us all ages 28-30 celebrating my FI's 30th birthday. We are not party animals but we would like to party some. At least 2-3 days out of our 6day stay.

    Please help...which Couples?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    73

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    I have only been to css so I can't say which couples is best for you but it sounds like css would be the best match and since that is the one calling you... I would go for it! Me and my ex are in your age range... we went to couples the week after my 30th and the month before his. It isn't a party atmosphere, at css anyway, but good drinks and good times were def had! Although first timers we didn't feel out of the loop or unwelcomed in anyway! We quickly made friends with a few of the staff and received great service. Pretty sure at csa you are closer to anything going on "off campus" also I believe "s" and all the others have more buffets less a la carte and provide better service to those with more money! Again not speaking from experience just what I have "heard" I think going to couples could never be the bad choice and can't believe a repeater would even suggest otherwise... tsk tsk...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    242

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    I have to disagree with your co-worker...

    I went to CSA last May on my honeymoon and we are booked for our second trip this May. For the complete opposite reasons that your co-worker said, it is NOT like any other resort. The service, food, beach, bars, grounds are outstanding. We've been to many other resorts, including S, and this is the first we are going back to.

    We are in our early thirties and enjoy nightlife as well. Almost every night we were partying with other guests until 1 or 2am. I'm sure nightlife is hit or miss depending on the couples there, but since you will have other couples with you I cant imagine this being an issue.

    Rachel

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    107

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    Hi hiseverything...my husband and I honeymooned at CN almost 2 years ago when I was 33 and he was 35 and we will be returning to Jamaica this May to check out CSA. CN was great, there were a mixture of all ages there and the nightlife wasn't bad at all. And trust me, we like to have a good time every now and then. As your co-worker mentioned there are alot of repeaters that visit but Hellooo...every repeater had their first time also or they wouldn't be a repeater...lol. While I had a great time at CN...I am really looking forward to CSA...from what I've been reading the nightlife isn't too shabby at the resort itself and they are walking distance to several bar areas including Margaritaville! So in my opinion, I think you should definitely try CSA...I'm sure you'll have a great time!

  5. #5

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    I can tell you about my experience, if this helps. My husband and I chose CTI for our wedding and honeymoon in August 2011. BEST TIME OF OUR LIVES!
    And we had never been to Couples before. We did NOT feel like outsiders. As soon as you arrive at the airport and arrive at the Couples lounge, YOU are now family too! Don't worry about feeling like an outsider. That's nonsense.

    I know there are a lot of couples that plan theirs trips with others they have met before so that they will know people. But I can tell you from experience that my husband and I had a total BLAST and it was just the two of us.

    We are 35 and we thought the night life was great at CTI. It is what you make of it. There are LOTS of things to do at night.

    I compared the S resorts as well and I chose Couples based on recommendations from personal friends. After comparing the prices, the inclusions and the overall value-Couples was our choice hands down.

    We are planning a return trip later this year. And if we don't know anyone on this trip--WHO CARES!!??

    Book Couples. You will NOT regret it.

    Danielle
    Weddingmoon @ CTI August 2011
    Planning our return Home!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    987

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    Your "co-worker" does not strike me as a great source of objective information about Couples in general or CSA in particular.

    Yes, there are what we call around here "repeaters". They are folks that have made multiple trips to Couples over the years, and yes some of them meet up with other travellers from year to year. However in my experience there are as many or more new visitors at any given time of year. Don't let that be a concern, you will be just as welcome and treated just as well as someone making their tenth visit to Couples.

    We considered the "S" resorts some years ago and are glad we did not choose them. When comparing with those who have been to the S resorts most of them wish they would have chosen Couples instead. Enough on that subject.

    CSA does have a buffet restaurant, that also offers dinner from a menu. They also have restaurants that serve exclusively from a menu, as well as a grill open all night and a "healthy alternative" restaurant during the day. The food is terrific by any standard. There are several bars, including a swim up bar, beach bars and a martini bar. ALL food and drinks are included, for everyone.

    While not "over the top" fancy, CSA is beautifuly elegant and very Jamaican in flavour and atmosphere. Not all brass and marble, but simple, clean and very relaxed. Unlike you, we place a high importance on the beach and CSA has a magnificent beach. Once you experience the beach at CSA you may change your priority on beach quality in the future.

    Night life is available both on and off site. The Aura lounge is open till the wee hours with DJ and dancing. There is nightly live music and a variety of other entertainment throughout the week. Off site nite clubs are just a short cab ride away. Others will have information on those, we are not so familiar with them but many folks love to go off site.

    Watch your thread for lots of information and suggestions on the other Couple resorts. Pick the one that seems a best fit for you. Have a great trip, what ever you decide!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    64

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    Hi
    Ultimately you will have to choose what's best for you and your FI but I will try to answer some of your questions and address come of your concerns:

    Repeaters - I think your co-worker is correct in that alot of Couples guest are repeaters. Having said that, Couples MUST have something going on different than other resorts that keeps people coming back and I think ALL repeaters can say it is the Couples Staff. The staff is what sets the Couples brand apart from all other brands.

    Feeling like an outsider - you will not feel like an outsider AT ALL. From the time you step on Couples property you are treated like you are coming "home", like family. I believe the kind of people the Couples brand attracts are the same kind of people that are laid back, warm, and friendly. Remember we all were once first timers, it is just not hard to make friends there .

    Age concerns - It all depends on how open you are. I can tell you that my husband and I are both in our early 30's and we are very fun loving and adventurous and we LOVE hanging out with the couples at Couples and we tend to have more fun with the older couples. We have made so many friends that are so much older than us but we all act the same age at Couples - lol. We also are very open minded and non-judgemental so it is a good fit for us.

    Which reort? - that is a hard question based on what you want. Since the beach doesnt matter I could say CTI BUT you said partyting does matter which makes me say CSA or CN.
    Our first trip to Couples (CN) was for my husband's 30th birthday and we loved it. We did not travel with a group so our focus was more on romance.
    CN and CSA are both in Negril - Negril hands down has the best beach. Negril also has off-site nightlife options if you are looking to party. I will be honest - none of the Couples resorts have a late night life so you will have to party off of the resort. This should help you narrow it down at least to CN and CSA. CTI and CSS are located in Ocho Rios and there is no off-site partying/clubs near. So if that is important I would definetly stay at CN or CSA.
    I have only been to CN and CTI so I cannot speak on CSA.

    I hope this helps a little.

    Angelle

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    1,277

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    I guess the easiest way to answer your question is to tell you why we pick CSA the first time (count down for third trip is on) . First we knew we wanted all inclusive with no children. Then we started to look
    at what each resort included.

    Next was dinner choices, reservation requirements, can you go more then once, buffet vs al cart.

    We too wanted to be able to play late into the night.

    A beautiful beach that you can walk.

    Didn't want to worry about services braised on what room we choice.

    And finially we didn't want to stay at a huge resort,with a huge pool, That didn't feel like we were in a tropical paradise.

    CSA was a yes in all catigories and was better then we dreamed. Yes there are repeater once you have found a place that comes as close to perfection as Couples does why would you look else where for the same type of vacation.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    10

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    Just booked our first trip to Jamaica and going to SA May 13-20th for our 30th Anniversary (ages 48, 49). When are you going?

  10. #10

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    Your coworkers concerns are mostly without meaning. We went to Tower Isle in 1971 for our honeymoon. Not all inclusive but very nice. Went back to Tower Isle out of being intrigued with Jamaica in 1973. Tried other resorts on other islands for the next five years. Went back to Tower Isle in 1978 to find thet it was Jamaica's first All Inclusive thenn called Couples Ocho Rios. Loved the all inclusive concept. Spent years going to the other Couples. Once to CSS, 10 times to CN, and once to CSA for lunch but always returning to Couples Ocho Rios (now CTI). We started the Couples Resorts Ocho Rios Charity Golf Tournament 12 years ago and will return next week for the 11th. Annual Couples Ocho Rios Charity Golf tournament on January 15, 2012.This will be our 76th. trip to Couples Resorts(74 to CTI). As you can see we have been to all of the Couples Resorts. Whether or not it was our first time or not it made no difference. The attraction of Couples are not the amenities of each resort but the Jamaican People ( STAFF). We prefer CTI because that is where we do most of our charity work. So the moral of my story is: Do what ever floats your boat. You will have no regrets.
    We started when we were twenty one and we are now sixty three

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    29

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    Our 1st trip was to CSS last year. We are in our mid 40s. We did not feel like outsiders. We had a great time. The staff & all guest are so friendly. We met & hung out with couples of all age groups & had no trouble making new friends. Age was not an issue. This year we're trying out CTI. I'm not worried a bit. I know it will be great!

  12. #12

    Default Your ideal couples would be CSA all the way.

    The only couples resort we have not been to is CN. I can tell you that for what you want you will want to go to CSA. Some of the reasons are that the night life at CTI and CSS is done at around 10:30CSA is the only couples resort I think with their own dance club. There are clubs in Negril that are awesome and you can get there and back again with a red licensed plate taxi! The beach and the tropical landscaping at CSA is dreamlike. The beach you can walk for miles on and there are parties all the time on seven mile. When you book be sure to get an atrium room second floor don't book anything else!! The food is great (I do not ever eat buffet food) as long as you book for reservations only for dinner. The spa and health club across the street is amazing truly amazing. Do book your couples massage early as well as catamaran cruise,and your dinner reservations. We honeymooned at CTI and CSA and we did a trading places at CSS. The only problem I had with CSA was that they were running at 96 percent capacity ( which is the norm for them) and we could not book anything when we got there however, after talking with the general operations manager ( she ROCKS !!!) we were able to do everything we wanted when we wanted. I will tell you that we are coming home to CTI in July. The reasons we really liked this resort is that the snorkling is better ( rougher waters but more to see no boats zooming by and scaring the fishes) the food is to die for! ( 8 rivers service and food is unparallelled) the Thai place is on the water and the food there is the same at Lemongrass however, at Lemongrass we were the dinner for many mosquitos since it is all outside and the last reason we loved CTI is that the staff treated my hubby and me like family.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    221

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    Your co-worker is wrong. As a travel consultant I can and have gone to resorts all over the world, but we return again and again to Couples. We have been to all 4 resorts, CSA -5, CN-4, CTI-2 and CSS-1. We will be returning to CN in April. Yes there are repeaters, but eveyone is made to feel welcome, if you like to interact with people and the staff they will know your names by the end of the first day, no matter which resort. I love CSA the best, I love the rooms, the long walks on the beach and the variety of meal choices.
    We have made friends with people of all ages and danced the night away in the disco and to the bands that they usually have in the evening. Everyone is ageless at Couples!
    I think your co-worker is trying to keep it her little secret, you will never, ever feel like an outsider. We do not return the same time every year, we try to mix it up.

    If you are not looking for marble, 52 inch flat tv's, glitz and glamour, head to Couples, they are funky, Caribbean inspired jewels of Jamaica.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    33

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    I've not been to Couples yet so keep that in mind... but just to show that there are young people there too, my husband and I are going to CSA for the first time in August. He'll be 27 and I'll be 23... so we're definitely on the younger side and based on months and months of research and basically being obsessed with this message board I'm not concerned at all about feeling out of place or an outsider. Just based on the kind responses from everyone else on the MB and what I've read I feel like I can confidently say any Couples Resort would be a great choice!

  15. #15

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    We chose Couples last year because we wanted to have a nice, fun, romatic, yet enjoyqable vacation away from our kids and other poeple's small children as well. That may sound rash, but I tell you what, our week was great. We re-connected, relaxed, and had the best times of our lives. We were treated wonderfully by all staff. "No Problem Mon, you're on vacation!" I was treated no differently than the possible millionaire sitting next to me on the beach. At Couples, you are their guest and they will take care of you regardless of age, (you will fit in with everyone, Bob is 65 or so and waterskis every morning) equally well. I had heard that at the S resort you are given a level and you are treated according to your level. That is hearsay as I have never been there but take it for what its worth. You will fit in, you will have fun. Choose Couples. You won't regreat it a bit!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    51

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    In 2008 we were the newbies and now we are one of the repeaters. We felt so at home and everyone was so friendly that we had to go back. Yes, there are a lot of people that return the same time every year but they do not make the newbies feel out of place, in fact they make you feel like you have been there many times. Our 4th trip is this February.
    There are people of all ages. This year my boyfriends aunt and uncle are going with us, and they are worried that they are going to be the old people at the resort. We keep telling them that there are people of all ages and that age is not an issue.

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