Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 29

Thread: Worried CSA

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Posts
    36

    Default Worried CSA

    I have read more then a few bad reviews on Tripadvisor for CSA in the last few weeks, we are returning in a few weeks and just wanted some feed back of anyone who has recently return from CSA. We are returning guests and thought it was perfect the first time and hope that we are not disappointed.

  2. #2

    Default

    I just posted on the thread CSA - Bad Reviews on TripAdvisor. When it appears, read it.......might ease some of your worries about CSA.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    7

    Default

    I am here as we speak now,review to come my advice book ASAP. Best vacation ever and they are @ 99 percent occupied

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    1,288

    Default

    If you loved it the first time, your going to love it even more the second time. We were worried on our second trip that it would be a bit of a let down, not live up to our memories of the first trip. Our second trip was even better then our first. Fourth trip is in 74 days and I know it will be even better then the third.

    Take the reviews for what they are , someone elses opinion. People who complain about CSA didn't know enough about the resort before going, like the couple who went and tried to go to Feathers in shorts or people who think 5 stars means a Las Vegas kind of resort; marble,brass huge foutain in lobby, no thank-you. Other just look for things to complain about or think it makes for a good review to find things to complain about and you have people who just aren't happy ever. And there are always those who just make things up.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1

    Default

    Let me start by saying that this was our eighth trip to Couples Swept Away and, in the past, we have always had an excellent experience at this resort and always had nothing but praise for the Staff, Food, Amenities and Quality of the Premium Liquor.

    This year we were at Couples Swept Away for seven days which, when all was included, cost us in the neighborhood of $5,000.00 US. We stayed in the Atrium Suites area which is where we stayed on our previous seven visits. We arrived at the resort around 1:45 PM and checked in at the front desk. In the past, we were always greeted by a friendly smiling bellman with a glass of cold champagne. Well, bellman was there but not smiling or friendly this year and the champagne did not appear at all. Following check in, we were told to go have lunch and check back in an hour or so to see if our room was ready. When we checked back the room was not ready so we waited for another half hour or so until it was. We were taken to the room by a bellman who was pleasant and helpful. The room was equipped with a small refrigerator mini bar but none of the drinks in the fridge were cold and it was obvious the fridge was not working. I reported this to the front desk and was advised that someone would be around to take care of it. Also, the in room safe did not operate correctly as it would not lock even though the display indicated that it was locked. We were able to change, go to dinner and spend some time with our travelling companions. We returned to the room to find that the fridge had not been taken care of and the safe still did not lock. Being that it was late I thought I would wait until morning to make another call. The next morning after breakfast, I visited the front desk and shortly thereafter a repairman came to take care of the problems. He replaced the fridge and also the batteries in the safe and both began to work properly. The room that we stayed in is in dire need of a complete renovation. Both of the lamps had broken shades and the door for the mini bar (fridge) did not close completely and hung open by a few inches the entire week. Obviously the electrical connection at the rear of the fridge hung out of the wall not allowing to fridge to completely fit into the enclosure. Minor sure but, when you bang your knee on it at zero dark thirty it is not minor. The rest of the room had a shabby appearance which we were not used to at Couples.

    Now, I would never claim that the food at Couples Swept Away was gourmet fare but it was always on the higher side of average. This year, the food was on the lower side of average and, when you saw something on the buffet that was not moving, you could be guaranteed that you would see it again in another form at another meal. I could get the same food at any run of the mill buffet near my home. I expect more for what it costs to go to Couples for seven days.

    Now for the most annoying part of this trip. In the past, we ALWAYS were served what I would consider "premium" liquors and the resort advertises that they serve "premium" liquors. Personally, in the evening, I drink Vodka Martinis with Grey Goose Vodka and had always done that in the past at the Martini Bar. This year, I ordered that drink and the bartender grabbed a bottle of Smirnoff which was near the Grey Goose bottle. I stopped her and asked her to use Grey Goose which she did. Well, I drank it and I must tell you that what I was drinking was not Grey Goose Vodka. At that point, I thought well, I will switch to Crown Royal which I also drink quite often and on the rocks. Again, I can tell you that, what I was drinking was absolutely not Crown Royal. At this point I became suspicious that the "premium" liquors are now either just premium liquor bottles containing another brand of liquor or adulterated premium liquors. Either of these is unacceptable. In the past, I had been able to ask for and get a glass of White Zinfandel wine. This year, I was told that they did not have White Zinfandel at the bar but they would be willing to get me a wine list and I could buy a bottle. Hah, I am at an all inclusive and get White Zin which is not an expensive wine by any means. Also, I had been able to get it for seven years and now I couldn't. For the past seven years, the beach bars all served Absolute Vodka as their bar Vodka. It is now Stoly and you have to ask for it or you will get something from a bottle labeled with something you may never have heard of. The only bar that served "premium" liquor was the Feathers bar and believe me, after being at that bar I may as well have gone home and drank because, after drinking there, the other bars were a complete disappointment.

    One of the things that always brought us back to Jamaica and especially Couples Swept Away was the Staff. In the past, the Staff at Swept Away was always smiling and were very outgoing and friendly. It always seemed that they loved their jobs and that they looked forward to serving you and telling you about their lives and their families. This year, with a couple exceptions, that was not the case at all. Most of the Staff just seemed to be going through the motions and were doing their job because they had to do it and not because they enjoyed it. Staff members who had been there for years and who we looked forward to seeing were no longer there or were no longer visible to us.

    As I said earlier, this was our eighth trip to Couples Swept Away and unfortunately it will be our last. If I am going to spend 5 Grand for a vacation, I can spend it where I know that I am going to get my money's worth. My money is good anywhere and I am sure another resort will be happy to see me coming. I do feel bad because we always loved Couples Swept Away and always looked forward to our return each year but it appears as if the bottom line is now trumping customer care, customer service and the amenities we enjoyed in the past.

  6. #6

    Default

    Well we just got back Sunday and I posted my review which seems to have been removed. The resort has changed in the 5 yrs since our first trip and we won't be going back. Just my opinion

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tmiller45m View Post
    Well we just got back Sunday and I posted my review which seems to have been removed. The resort has changed in the 5 yrs since our first trip and we won't be going back. Just my opinion
    Randymon, could you respond to these posts? We have made five trips to CSA, the last one in April 2011. We also noticed a difference on our last trip. The drinks seemed to be watered down and the level of service was not the same as it had been in the past. That said, CSA is my favorite place to go. We are considering booking another trip and want to bring two other couples with us. We have raved about the place and would not want to be embarrassed or disappointed.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    454

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rezmom View Post
    I have read more then a few bad reviews on Tripadvisor for CSA in the last few weeks, we are returning in a few weeks and just wanted some feed back of anyone who has recently return from CSA. We are returning guests and thought it was perfect the first time and hope that we are not disappointed.
    Not that I have ever been to CSA, but I read the recent reviews on TA. I do believe that you can't please all the people all the time, but if you please most people most of the time, you're doing a great job. If you look at the number of reviews on TA, you'll see that 1,768 people love it, and only 67 hate it.
    I'd be going with the masses on this one, and ignore the few that are probably constant complainers, never happy with anything.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    6

    Default

    I completely agree with those that say that people will find ANYTHING to complain about. I particularly liked the post by 'redinthehead'. Research goes a long way. I think that people looking into couples shouldn't be those looking for massive pools, carefully coiffed grounds and ornate marble sculptures. I love that couples is unique - it has something many of the other resorts don't offer - culture and natural serenity - that uniqueness is worth the first 4 stars alone!

    With that being said, my primary concern with the recent reviews (as it is common theme among BOTH good and bad reviews) are things in rooms breaking/not working as they should. I'm completely on board with the understated elegance, and even a so-called "tired" room doesn't really phase me, but One thing i WOULD expect is that everything in my room (locks, door knobs, A/C, showers, fridge, etc) should be functioning properly, without having to ask for them to be repaired (after all, I go on vacation to leave those annoying matters!). I know that the staff does exceptionally well to help with these inconveniences as soon as they occur (which I am thankful for!), but still, given the resorts reputation, I feel like these inconveniences shouldn't exist at all. Perhaps the rooms should be thoroughly inspected prior to each check-in? If something looks like its on its last legs, fix it before it crumbles?! Just a thought...

    From what I understand, Couples is doing ongoing renovations, so hopefully these issues will be fixed in good time. Until then, I guess people just need to be prepared for these minor inconveniences. Everything else seems tickity-boo, though.

    I think the bottom line is - do your research. know what kind of vacation you're looking for. be honest with yourself, and you wont be disappointed.

    I know I'm still excited!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    196

    Default

    I read a TA review for a Jamaican resort the other day where a reviewer complained that "the sun goes down to early". Every place is not going to meet everyone's expectations. What matters to one, may not matter at all to another.

  11. #11

    Default

    I am worried as well. I understand that TA has more critics than not that will find the absolute worse in anything BUT these posts are not sporadic as before. This morning is another post about the condition of the resort and mystery liquor. For the first timer like me, I have nothing to go off of except for these things and it is making me nervous. I picked CSA for its great reviews and for some reason something has went wrong over the past few weeks. I am so confused. Hopefully, since this is a Couples board that someone will read these and evaluate what is happening, get it fixed, and at least acknowledge people's concerns and make a statement that they are working on making it better. At this point, I can back out without penalty and if these reviews continue, I will do just that. Very sad

  12. #12

    Default

    I mean no disrespect to anyone, but I just don't understand how not having the right brand of alcohol could possibly ruin my vacation. Here at home I prefer Molson beer & my wife drinks Parot Bay rum. They have neither of these at CSA so I drink Red Stripe or OP & Diet, she drinks coconut & diet or whatever. We certainly don't tisk over not having our favorite brands of booze. There will always be little issues of things not working, but none of them ever ruined our vacation. I understand when you say " I pay for premium liquor & am mad that I didn't get it", or maby they served a repeat course of meals, but again, none of these would ruin my vacation. Someone didn't smile, maybe they were having a bad day or didn't feel well that day. To sum it up, some complain they paid for top shelf booze, , snapping finger service, etc, etc.. I on the other hand, I pay the same amount of money for the relaxation, crystal clear water, the ambiance & tropical vibe that CSA provides & I've always enjoyed my meals & had a good time on whatever booze I drank & have never felt like I didn't get my money's worth. 28 more days till trip # 20, & I will post a short & honest review, good & bad, if there is any, & then both sides will be told 1st hand. Just my humble opinion.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    787

    Default

    We are somewhat worried about CSA also from just returning this last week. It seems like corners are being cut. We are not sure itís because of the new manager or is Couples sinking money into their new resort in Barbados. The staff didnít seem to be as content as other years. The food was spectacular and there are some minor physical improvements of the property being done. We stayed in a PBFS again this year and these rooms are needing some attention. We were not as impressed with the drink quality. I actually did not drink my first dirty banana. It tasted like fake banana and really sweet. Bummer. The beach was not a clean as other years and there were piles of raked up seaweed left on the beach one day.

    All in all, our trip was wonderful. We just are saddened by some of the changes, or neglect, that we see at our favorite place on earth.

    Life is good

  14. #14

    Default

    We stayed in an Atrium room in late February/early March. It was our 5th visit to CSA in the last six years. We thought the room, 2217, was fine, and didn't notice any reduction in the quality or enjoyment of our stay. We are not knowledgeable or very fussy about premium liquors, so I am not in a position to opine on the experience an earlier poster had with that.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    124

    Default

    Wow sounds like things are going downhill. I hope that is not the case. Has anyone else had a similar experience? Randymon is this true about not offering the premium liquor?

  16. #16

    Default

    Heads Up Swept Away.....Long Time customers not happy....!!! Listen to your returning guests...you need them!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    1,076

    Default

    yikes...hubby wants to go there next year for our 20th...I want CN...we shall see!

    CSA 2009, 2014 [20th anniversary]
    CSS 2010
    CN 2011

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,299

    Default

    tmiller45m - your post is indeed still up (as of Friday afternoon) and has not been removed or locked.

    First off, I would like to say that it speaks volumes that Couples even allows negative reviews to be posted on their own message board. Enough said there.

    We just got back from 10 days at CSA in February. This was our 7th trip to CSA and 8th to Couples. We are not Couples junkies or travel novices. We usually take several shorter vacations every year and have travelled throughout the Caribbean, Central America, and Europe. I travel every week for work, so I've seen my share of hotels and resorts. If you want to see truly tacky hotels that gouge you for every dime possible, go to Vegas. I just got back from a business trip there, and it amazes me that a resort can put a coffee maker in your room, and then have the nerve to charge you $8 for the coffee packs.

    Is CSA perfect? No. Is it deteriorating. Absolutely not. In fact, we constantly commented on this past trip that we thought the service was a notch above the past few years. We only had to wait once for coffee at the Palms at breakfast (usually a sore point in the past). We had spectacular service at every single meal except one lunch at Sea Grapes when Bob got his sandwich 10 minutes before me. That's it.

    Do I wish the rooms were nicer? Yes, I do. We stay in the BFVS category. However, I think when we go to CSA, we are paying primarily for the location on 7 mile beach. There are not many resorts where you can get a room right on the beach and not spend four figures a night for it. If you go to Miami Beach, "beachfront" often means 100 yards from the sand.

    I don't think any of the booze is watered down. Many people comment how they don't feel buzzed at CSA even though they're drinking all day. One of our friends figured out that because you are probably eating way more than you are at home, you won't get the buzz that you would get at home with the same amount of alcohol. If you want to find premium liquor at CSA, you don't have to go far to find it. I personally think it would be a bad business decision to have Grey Goose vodka at the beach bars. They have Stoli, which is perfectly good for mixing in fruity drinks. Keep the Grey Goose for the martini bar. They also can't have every type of wine that someone might want to drink. It's the Caribbean, not the Finger Lakes or Napa Valley.

  19. #19

    Default

    Wow!!! I hope things aren't that way when we head back in June!

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    95

    Default

    PLEASE MANAGEMENT!!!!! TAKE CARE OF THE PROBLEM!! When we were at CSA last August things were (not the same). We will be trying CTI this August 2013. We have been to CSA three times and decided to try CTI this year with all the promotions that were offered. It was hard for us to change because we LOVED CSA so much. I guess things have gone downhill since then as we read the messages from other repeaters. We're going to CTI in August and have been worried that we made a mistake changing. I haven't read any negative things on any of the other 3 resorts as of yet. Did I miss them? We have never paid attention to Trip Advisor reviews- we go strictly by our other Couples family and what we discuss when we are there. We're gonna go to CTI with an open mind and enjoy ourselves, we'll see what happens. Our hearts want this problem to be taken care of, PLEASE!!!!!

  21. #21

    Default

    Is it the couples brand that has changed or CSA? Would you try another couples resort?

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    23

    Default

    Reviews are just that. They are someone's opinion about what they did or didn't like. Sometimes very tastefully stated whether good or bad and sometimes not. If you expect to return year after year without any changes, you will be disappointed. As with anything, changes occur whether you want them to or not.

    For instance, one could sit down and think about everything that has changed about themselves in the last 20 years. I guarantee there is going to be some bad and some good. As you can imagine, this could lead to a lot of opinions and would you agree with them all....

    My husband and I have been vacationing at CSA since 1996. There has been many changes. It is all in what you make of it and if Couples states something specific in their advertising and it is not at all what was provided then constructive criticism should be given. I have yet to read and see something that is more than an opinion. Read through what Couples provides and if it appears to be somewhat unclear check into it before booking your trip. This may help to reassure you that you aren't looking for something that Couples is not.

    Enjoy CSA and enter the resort with an open mind as you would want someone to the first time they meet you and years later after you have had some changes....

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    1

    Default same issues

    first timers and found the same issues above. been to other resorts such as excellence in punta cana with much better service/friendliness at a much lower cost. ac was dripping water, room was outdated and not "authentic" just old. could have gone elsewhere for the $. one time was enough for us.



    Quote Originally Posted by Major92 View Post
    Let me start by saying that this was our eighth trip to Couples Swept Away and, in the past, we have always had an excellent experience at this resort and always had nothing but praise for the Staff, Food, Amenities and Quality of the Premium Liquor.

    This year we were at Couples Swept Away for seven days which, when all was included, cost us in the neighborhood of $5,000.00 US. We stayed in the Atrium Suites area which is where we stayed on our previous seven visits. We arrived at the resort around 1:45 PM and checked in at the front desk. In the past, we were always greeted by a friendly smiling bellman with a glass of cold champagne. Well, bellman was there but not smiling or friendly this year and the champagne did not appear at all. Following check in, we were told to go have lunch and check back in an hour or so to see if our room was ready. When we checked back the room was not ready so we waited for another half hour or so until it was. We were taken to the room by a bellman who was pleasant and helpful. The room was equipped with a small refrigerator mini bar but none of the drinks in the fridge were cold and it was obvious the fridge was not working. I reported this to the front desk and was advised that someone would be around to take care of it. Also, the in room safe did not operate correctly as it would not lock even though the display indicated that it was locked. We were able to change, go to dinner and spend some time with our travelling companions. We returned to the room to find that the fridge had not been taken care of and the safe still did not lock. Being that it was late I thought I would wait until morning to make another call. The next morning after breakfast, I visited the front desk and shortly thereafter a repairman came to take care of the problems. He replaced the fridge and also the batteries in the safe and both began to work properly. The room that we stayed in is in dire need of a complete renovation. Both of the lamps had broken shades and the door for the mini bar (fridge) did not close completely and hung open by a few inches the entire week. Obviously the electrical connection at the rear of the fridge hung out of the wall not allowing to fridge to completely fit into the enclosure. Minor sure but, when you bang your knee on it at zero dark thirty it is not minor. The rest of the room had a shabby appearance which we were not used to at Couples.

    Now, I would never claim that the food at Couples Swept Away was gourmet fare but it was always on the higher side of average. This year, the food was on the lower side of average and, when you saw something on the buffet that was not moving, you could be guaranteed that you would see it again in another form at another meal. I could get the same food at any run of the mill buffet near my home. I expect more for what it costs to go to Couples for seven days.

    Now for the most annoying part of this trip. In the past, we ALWAYS were served what I would consider "premium" liquors and the resort advertises that they serve "premium" liquors. Personally, in the evening, I drink Vodka Martinis with Grey Goose Vodka and had always done that in the past at the Martini Bar. This year, I ordered that drink and the bartender grabbed a bottle of Smirnoff which was near the Grey Goose bottle. I stopped her and asked her to use Grey Goose which she did. Well, I drank it and I must tell you that what I was drinking was not Grey Goose Vodka. At that point, I thought well, I will switch to Crown Royal which I also drink quite often and on the rocks. Again, I can tell you that, what I was drinking was absolutely not Crown Royal. At this point I became suspicious that the "premium" liquors are now either just premium liquor bottles containing another brand of liquor or adulterated premium liquors. Either of these is unacceptable. In the past, I had been able to ask for and get a glass of White Zinfandel wine. This year, I was told that they did not have White Zinfandel at the bar but they would be willing to get me a wine list and I could buy a bottle. Hah, I am at an all inclusive and get White Zin which is not an expensive wine by any means. Also, I had been able to get it for seven years and now I couldn't. For the past seven years, the beach bars all served Absolute Vodka as their bar Vodka. It is now Stoly and you have to ask for it or you will get something from a bottle labeled with something you may never have heard of. The only bar that served "premium" liquor was the Feathers bar and believe me, after being at that bar I may as well have gone home and drank because, after drinking there, the other bars were a complete disappointment.

    One of the things that always brought us back to Jamaica and especially Couples Swept Away was the Staff. In the past, the Staff at Swept Away was always smiling and were very outgoing and friendly. It always seemed that they loved their jobs and that they looked forward to serving you and telling you about their lives and their families. This year, with a couple exceptions, that was not the case at all. Most of the Staff just seemed to be going through the motions and were doing their job because they had to do it and not because they enjoyed it. Staff members who had been there for years and who we looked forward to seeing were no longer there or were no longer visible to us.

    As I said earlier, this was our eighth trip to Couples Swept Away and unfortunately it will be our last. If I am going to spend 5 Grand for a vacation, I can spend it where I know that I am going to get my money's worth. My money is good anywhere and I am sure another resort will be happy to see me coming. I do feel bad because we always loved Couples Swept Away and always looked forward to our return each year but it appears as if the bottom line is now trumping customer care, customer service and the amenities we enjoyed in the past.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    28

    Default

    Just my opinion but I think that the controversy regarding premium alcohol boils down to what a guest expects. A lot of people are happy with a less expensive vodka in their Drink of the Day. I do not disagree with that. Stoli is fine for that. And some guests drink many Drinks of the Day. However, for me, that is not what I like. I probably have 1 Dirty Banana on the beach the entire day. I prefer to drink at the Martini Bar and I want premium alcohol. I want to enjoy the taste of Grey Goose in a martini. I drink the good stuff at home and do not expect less in a resort that advertises premium liquor and which is costing a good amount of money.
    Frankly, my husband and I do not even order any gin, vodka or rum in our minibar. The only alcohol ordered is Red Stripe and a bottle of red and white wine {which sat unopened the entire week we were there} . I don't imagine many people have so little in their minibar. But it would be wasteful for us to order anything else. We just don't drink it.
    So what it comes down to is what makes you content with a resort. We are disheartened, after numerous visits, by the morale of the staff who previously were so happy,and the deteriorating room condition as well as the lack of premium alcohol. And while I am sure to be dinged on this, I personally witnessed 2 occasions at the Martini Bar in which a full bottle of Grey Goose was taken from the storage area below the bar.......and the seal was already broken.
    Yes, the beach is lovely and it's wonderful to leave the cold northern US and have the ability to travel to the Caribbean. And it's delightful to meet other guests and chat with them. I do appreciate how lucky I am. But after 8 trips to CSA in 9 years, it's probably time for us to move on.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    440

    Default

    We just came home from another lovely week @ CSA. This was our 14th trip according to the hubs(I think it was 13 ). We enjoyed the same motherly embrace from CSA as we always do upon arrival and the Couples care, love, and appreciation for her guests carried through the entire time we were in residence. No disrespect meant to other posters, but we are pretty low maintenance guests. However, if we requested something/anything, it was granted and given gladly. If I asked for a 7&7, I was drinking it. If I asked for an Appletone Estate & diet, I was also drinking that. No problem mon! We have many, many friends who are on staff there and we feel lucky to call them friends! It is our opinion, the staff only enhance the CSA experience & they are the true jewels of CSA. Then, what more can be said about the beach other than it is simply gorgeous & beautiful. As Sonofthebeach has remarked perhaps if a CSA employee did not smile upon approach or seem as happy her guests think they should be(working in such a beautiful place), they may have been having a moment or a bad day. They like we are all human. Perhaps some consideration could be given to the fact that they may have also been just plain hot as they're busting their arses off in the heat & the sun to make us happy and carefree. Please know, there was much concern and worry within the staff last week as one of CSAs managers(Julene) was in hospital and under going brain surgery to hopefully repair a brain aneurysm she'd suffered the week before. Most staff were going back & forth to the sport complex giving blood last week Tuesday in honor of her. Everyone was on pins & needles and praying for her as she was in a holding pattern until a bed in the ICU & surgical care unit opened so she could have the surgery she needed. All continue to pray for a full recovery. Julene's status as of this writing is unknown. Anyway, I shed the same big, wet, hot tears as I usually do upon departure. We love CSA and long and dream for our next journey home. Love & Respect - Razzl

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •