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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    3

    Default Nervous about decision...

    Hello everyone-
    I've been lurking the message boards looking for feedback regarding our trip to JA in December 2013. We've booked for CTI 12/20-12/26. It was really hard to make the decision because CSA was initially calling my name but the price looked better for CTI-so I booked. Now, I'm not sure if I made the "right" decision (I know you can't go wrong with any Couples resort-based on the reviews). So, I figure if I told you a little bit more about what we are looking for maybe you can convince me that CTI is/isn't the place for us.
    1. Weather is important-Which will offer more sunny days-especially in December? CTI or CSA?
    2. Beach is not super important to us but would like to know more about the beach at CTI (not comparative to CSA because I know it's night and day).
    3. We tend to be more pool people does anyone know which has the better pool atmosphere?
    4. We don't care alot about nightlife but do enjoy a more lively social scene during the day (beach or pool activities/games, overall fun atmosphere).
    5. The rooms at CTI seemed more "updated" (we don't care about fancy rooms and we know not to expect that at any Couples) but how do the rooms compare between CTI and CSA? We've booked a premier room at CTI and I know only GVS and GHVS are available at CSA right now.
    I hope that someone can shed some light on whether we've made the "right" decision...please help :-)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    85

    Default

    We loved CSA, like you when we were "tossing" Couples resorts to make a decision after weighing out all the pros and cons we decided to go with CSA and we were back again this year so that pretty much sums up if it was the right decision

    I did a lot of reading on this forum before making the decision and picked the spot where the most repeaters went and CSA was I believe at that time won.

    There are 2 pools at CSA of which one is the Pool Bar, 3 Jacuzzis spread out through the resort. Weather was perfect both times we were there, hard to say with Jamaica, weather pattern is unpredictable on that island. If you're looking for a day social scene, CSA would probably be better, the beach and resort is massive, I think the biggest of all the Couples resorts. The fitness center has pool table, ping pong table, there's the Aura lounge with a casino beside it, always some sort of beach activities like beach volleyball, tie and dye etc.

    If you do decide on CSA, get the Atrium Suite, beautiful rooms, no tv though. Realistically, how much time will you be spending in your room. Our room was used to sleep, shower, change, have a quick drink and we were out again, there is so much to do, we barely spent anytime in our room. See photos of our room.

    We've never been to CTI but it looks romantic, we did a Trading Places with CN and it looks about the same size at CTI, we found CN too "condensed" after been to CSA twice, that's our preference. Every resort has their special features, you just have to find that one that suits you. Good luck!

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,953

    Default

    #2, beach is small, but you are close to everything. It is private in the sense that there are not vendors or guests from other resorts walking at the water's edge. There are no other water craft in the area, so it is peaceful. We had one day where one jet ski zipped by then back again.
    #3. See Randy's post about the Swim Up bar at CTI being ranked #1. It is a smaller pool, but big enough. Then there is the main pool right by the main bar.
    #4. The entertainment crew is great and always had something going on, games and crafts.
    #5. Ive never been to CSA, so I can't compare rooms. We have had a Premier since the updates. If you are in Building 2, the rooms are larger with larger bathrooms. If you are in Building 3, the room sizes and bathroom sizes vary. HOWEVER, and this is BIG, you are about as close to the ocean as you can get with amazing views. Our room this year had a bigger bathroom, closet and balcony than our room last year. The rooms in Building #2 look over the main pool then to the ocean.
    I have tried to attach a photo of the swim up bar, the view from room last year, and a photo of the main pool. If you are in Building 2, you will be up a floor with a similar view.
    Attached Images Attached Images      
    Vicky

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    2,363

    Default

    1 - I've found the weather in Negril to be nicer than in Ocho Rios
    2 - What information are you wanting about the beach? It is small. Not sure what else to say.
    3 - CTI is more of a pool atmosphere than CSA although CN has the best pool.
    4 - If you are at the swim-up bar, it will be social
    5 - CTI went under a total renovation in 2008, that is why the rooms seem more updated. Although the Great House rooms were just built in 2005 (?). Those rooms are also nice. I've been in both rooms. Great House rooms don't have views like at CTI.
    Juliann & Jeff
    Jamaica Soon Come

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    776

    Default

    It you are more pool people then beach people, you made the right decision between CSA and CTI. The pools at CSA are small as the beach is main focus.

    I like the rooms at CSA and CN better because they have a more Jamaican and Caribbean feel, to me, then the rooms at CTI. CTI, again to me, seems to have more of a South Beach/Miami feel.

    As far as the social scene, all of the resorts have activities during the day, volleyball, etc if you want to join in, but it really depends on the crowd at the time if it really lively or just normal lively, that is all in what you make it.
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. If they get mad, you will be a mile away and they will be barefoot!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,398

    Default

    You can't go wrong with the Premier rooms at CTI, that's what we alway have. Both resorts are great and both have swim up bars which is where the social scene is during the day. CTI has the A/N island if you are interested in that. It also has a swim up bar. Unfortunately only you can decide which might suit you better but I can say we have stayes at them all and CTI then CSA are our top two.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    285

    Default

    I agree with Coloradojuli - we have always found the weather to be better in Negril than in Ocho Rios.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    203

    Default

    It's oranges and apples!
    CTI is a contemporary resort on a small secluded beach with lots of pool activity and socializing.
    CSA is a Caribbean resort on a long beautiful public beach with a small, crowded swim up bar.
    My guess would be that the weather in Negril might be a bit better in December.

    Go to YouTube and type in either resort. There are numerous videos posted that may help you decide. You can always flip a coin! You'll have a wonderful time wherever you end up.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    65

    Default

    I'll agree with Coloradojuli. The weather we experienced in December in Negril was better than Ocho Rios (lots of rain--not all day but many of the activities were curtailed because of it). As for the pools, that isn't why people go to CSA so CTI probably is better.

  10. #10

    Default

    We've been to both (as well as CSS and CB this Dec), at close to the same time of year. We were at CTI late Dec. to early Jan. Unfortunately there was a cold snap that lasted almost all week, but was gone when we transferred to CSS. Of course that's something that can't be controlled, and will affect much of the Caribbean, and certainly all of Jamaica. We didn't get rain though.
    One thing about CTI though that is more due to it's location on the North side of the island - The water can be choppy at that time of the year. This meant that the watersports were all a no go until finally later in the week the cat went out. No diving or snorkeling at all. We found Negril and even Montego Bay to have calmer water, and even CSS, since it's in a very shallow, protected bay. The other thing about being on the North side is that the buildings and trees can shade much of the beach. So there's no need to rush out early to get palapas.
    We liked the pools at CTI. The swim up pool in particular has such a nice view. However, we didn't really get to swim because of the cold snap (water not heated). We used the hot tubs quite a bit though All in all, we found CTI to be the most social of all the Couples resorts so far.
    As for the rooms, we liked both, but felt that by far we got more for our money at CTI, and were able to have a fabulous ocean view, whereas at CSA we just had a garden room.
    Despite the weather, we really enjoyed CTI and would go back. However, we'd probably look at a different time of year. It does look so much nicer in the photos when the water is calm and everyone is in the pools. We really like to enjoy watersports, so choppy water was a disappointment for us. After CB we'll plan to go back to Negril and try CN and split with CSA to go back there. We love all of them, but CSA is still our fav. for that gorgeous beach and calm, shallow water for floating
    Sorry, not helping am I? Maybe someone else can chime in who was there also later in Dec. of another year and had better weather.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    90

    Default

    My wife and I will be there at the same time as you. We arrive dec. 16-25. This will be our second time this year to CTI...It was so good the first time we couldn't wait to go again. It far exceeded our expectations. We stayed in an premier ocean view room the first time and I don't think I could imagine a room with a better ocean view. We can't compare negril because we've never been but we knew we wanted the privacy and no vendors. The beach at CTI had everything we needed.

  12. #12

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    Damenc- what room number were you in at CSA?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Thank you SO much for the feedback! I do feel better that CTI will be just fine for us. We are pretty low maintenance and don't actually like being at the beach all day so, I think it will be a good balance at CTI. We really believe vacation is what you make of it and I know we will have a great time wherever we are.

    Thanks for all the responses...I knew this message board worked wonders :-)

    Looking forward to dec 20th! I've been price-watching and it looks like prices have increased significantly since we booked three weeks ago (so we are def staying put)!

    Thanks again everyone

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