Our Tripadvisor trip report, may settle some with about other posts
Our return trip to Couples Negril was from August 6th thru the 16th, on our arrival we were greeted with hugs and some kisses at check in, once again they honored our request to be in building #1 first floor, our stay this time was for 10 nights, the resort was quiet as it is slow season.
Since we arrived on a Monday we had the repeaters dinner and it had maybe 20 25 people in attendance and was a very nice evening with some great food and company.
On our first trip to the pool bar we found out that Jose Cuervo was only available at the Piano Bar after 5 PM, not good as that is all my wife drinks, that evening we spoke with Michael the bar Manager and Conrad the Food and Beverage Manager and they quickly supplied the swim up bar with Jose Cuervo, Thanks Gentlemen!!!
We were in room 1108 and it was very clean, newly painted and refreshed and new bed linens, our room was cleaned every day before noon and turn down was done every evening while we were at dinner, new fresh towels left each time.
I see reports that mention the pool being dirty, cloudy in bad shape ??? We have been to CN 5 times now and have never experienced this situation, actually every morning one of the dive guys would pass our room with a pool filter on a cart and he would use this to vacuum and clean the pool, which is a great idea as you do not hinder the function of the pools main filter by doing this. Also remember its August if a gusty afternoon rain storm blows thru you will end up with leaves and other minor debris may end up in the pool
Dining, dinner was fantastic at every restaurant, few nights it was hot and humid but the fans and breeze at the open air restaurants kept it comfortable, I wear a cotton button down shirt and shorts to these restaurants and my wife very small tank dresses, if you wear much more than that you are going to be uncomfortable. The two restaurants with AC are very cool wearing pants for myself was very comfortable, the piano bar, restrooms upstairs and downstairs in the main building are very very cool from the AC, no musty or funny smell what so ever. Breakfast has it all, I do not know what others may be looking for, there are meats, pancakes, waffles, french toast, eggs any style, muffins ,pastry, smoked Marlin, there is nothing missing whatsoever and if you prefer something another way or are looking for something you do not see just ask they will accommodate you.
The staff ALL were very pleasant and would go out of their way for any one, are they slow sometimes, yep this is JAMAICA Mon!!! If you are in a hurry than I suggest visiting big resorts packed with people like in the Bahamas, Aruba, Miami Beach Etc where you will not get the personal attention you receive here, I can not finish a cup of coffee at breakfast as every time I turned around it was filled again. Did any one appear to be looking for a tip, not from me or my wife during any trip at any time to Couples.
Is Couples a swanky loud music blaring resort like the few down the beach, no it is not. Is it a great place to stay and enjoy? it sure is. We thoroughly enjoyed our entire 10 night stay, from walks on the beach every day, to refreshing dips in the main pool and the dive pool, to nightly visits to the large AN hot tub, to the small dive area private hot tub, we enjoyed dressing every night and dining a fresco many times, walking from our first floor terrace across the walk to the massage building. The grounds are impeccable, if you take the time to walk thru them all you will see their real beauty.
Is Couples perfect, nah not much anything is, so if perfect is what you are looking for than enjoy your journey, if glitz and glam, stuffy staff members and Hilton like accommodations are what you are looking for do not stay here, if fun, romance,great people, food and atmosphere to unwind and just relax, naked beach, topless beach, and everything Irie is what you are looking for than this is the place.
I haven't been- 10 days out from CSA but I am a research oriented fella at heart and I can tell people who were concerned about the reviews them read a couple tricks that I found helpful to sort through what was relevant and what wasn't. I was primarily comparing Breezes, Sandals, Couples and one other resort chain I can't remember. Here were the things I noticed in doing my reviews that swung me in favor of couples;
1. Every single resort was a 2012 traveller's choice award winner. That tells you something about the chain right there.
2. The response from management to the negative reviews- Sandals, for instance, uses a vanilla form letter. The response from Couples management came from an actual person and, in most cases, someone who seemed to remember something about the situation. That also says something about the resort.
3. Number of excellent reviews vs. terrible reviews as a ration- couples scored the most favorably in this when I did the math
4. When was the latest bad review- for most Sandals, it was within the last month, for most Couples, it was at least 9 months ago
5. Check out the reviewer giving the bad review- have they done any other reviews and did they like anything ever? If they did like something and have a good body of reviews, you can usually figure out what they like and general, and as a result if you like it too.
The final thing that won't help you on trip advisor, I work with a Jamaican and we have become close friends. He has lived here for 10 years so his reviews were out of date but he texted 10 friends with different tastes and asked if it should be Sandals or Couples- every single one replied Couples.
Hopefully I'll be putting up my own excellent TA review of CSA the first week of October- JDParker1369 on TA