We just got back Tues from CSS & were in Penthouse Suite D-21. If you are in one of the 4 Penthouse Suites on the top floor of D, then you do NOT have a totally "private" balcony. There are 2 (very aged-looking) white lattice dividers set out to separate the 2 front balconies from the 2 back balconies. Anyone can just walk around the lattice dividers.
As a matter of fact, the people in the room behind us had people over one evening. Those people just started to walk right around the divider onto our part of the balcony. They did stop once they saw us sitting out at our table, but I can only imagine that if we were not out there, they would have helped themselves to "our" view (since I'm sure that was what they were looking at).
That only happened that once (but who knows what went on when we were not there to see...). We always kept our 2 french doors locked & our bedroom windows & also kept our 2 bathroom windows (which opened onto our balcony) locked, and had no problems.
I believe that if you're in one of the other Penthouse Suites (not on the top of D), that you'll have a "real" balcony.
We did suggest on the comment card that they create real dividers up there, so people can't just wander aimlessly !!
That all said, we loved our suite so much, that the balcony "issue" would totally not stop us from staying up there again !!
We've been to all 4 Couples & that was our 4th time to Sans Souci and I have to say that CSS is totally our favorite Couples resort (& for that matter, one of our top favorite resorts out of 34 tropical vacations !!).
p.s. I have lots more pics of our trip & the room -- I just have to get them uploaded to my Photobucket account 1st !!
From D21 balcony looking back at balcony behind us (beyond the lattice):
Peeking around D21's lattice, looking toward other 2 Penthouse Suites:
They are private, but I believe that some of them have a semi-permanent divider that could theoretically be moved (though I can't imagine why one would want to). You could call the resort directly and inquire, and I'm sure they'd be happy to help you out.
After 2 trips to CN a tour of CSA and a trip to CSS, I can tell you even being a repeater picking your Couples resort is not easy..........
We decided to return to CSS in 2010 because we have 3 couples joining us 2 of which have been to CN and 1 of which has never been to JA, so we felt they would all love CSS.
I love CN and CSS for completly different reasons which is why it was even difficult for us to choose our resort.
Here is my advice to you as a newbie, which is the advice I took when I was a newbie.
First of all choose the area of JA you that fits you. Negril is known more for the beaches, and Ochi is known more for the lushness of that area. Are there any places in particular off resort you wish to visit such as Dunns River Falls, The Pelican Bar or Rick's Cafe? That can also help you choose the area.
Once you have made that decision then let the resort choose you. You need to look at all the virtual tours, go to Tripadvisor and read reviews, and look at Traveller photo's, there will be one that keeps pulling you back, the one you can't get out of your mind..... that is the one for you.
I will say once again between the two we have stayed at, had we not had friends joining us this year to make the decision easier, we may have had to flip a coin. We love CN for the beach, the layout, and we feel there is more a party vibe, we love CSS for the rooms, the overall beauty of the resort, and we feel it reeks of romance...... It is a very difficult decision, but honestly you cannot make a bad one!