We have been to CSA the last 2 years and loved it!! We are interested in trying another Couples Resort and we have been eyeing Couples Tower Isle in July 2015. Would love to hear some opinions from anyone who has stayed at CTI and any experiences they would like to share would be greatly appreciated!
They are radically different environments. You will not have the wonderful beach. You will have a nude island. You will be staying in a box hotel as opposed to a tropical jungle "hut" (fancy for a hut, eh?) You will not have the beach vendors. You will, though, have access to herb (just ask.) If your thinking is just to see the other side of the island, I would recommend CSS instead. I have stayed at both, many times, but now go to CSA exclusively. CSS is more tropical, more romantic, and not as boxy a hotel.
Ricky Ginsburg Boca Raton, Florida
(just a 75 minute plane flight from paradise)
We would highly recommend CSS over CTI. Of course that is our opinion. You will have a lot of others tell you CTI is the place to go. We have been to both. CSS is more tropical, smaller and the staff and food are great. CTI is too much like staying in a hotel to us. We are in the Caribbean and want to feel like it. Whichever you choose, you will have a terrific time. Be sure to do Dunns River Falls. The shopping in Ochie is a lot better than Negril if that interests you.
We are heading to CTI for trip six in 30 days. We like that the resort is more compact. The beach is right outside your patio if you stay in an Ocean view room.
The beach may not be as big, but it is a private beach and never full. The staff is awesome, as well as the food. If you use the spa services, the ladies are are excellant as well as the facilities. I can't imagine that you would have a bad time at CTI, different yes. We did a day trip to CSS last year, we were happy to go back to CTI, it is more comfortable to us.
we have stayed at CN, CSA and. Cti. We adore CTI anb CN AND REALLY did not like CSA at all. The vibe at CTI is so romantic and eclectic while still being Jamacian. We have no desire to go to CSS due to the hills.
We have stayed at Couples for 6 years, mainly at CSS which we love, but also CSA...Hoping to go back there in November!
We have also stayed at CTI, but transfered back to CSS for the last few days. Don't get me wrong, it's a lovely hotel, but it could be anywhere..it just dosen't have the tropical vibe of the other two
We also found it to be much "louder" & therefore not so relaxing as CSS
Css is just beautiful, & the spa is heavenly!! We just love the Couples massages in the little huts, listening to the sea gently lapping the shore
You'll have a lovely time which ever you choose in Ocho Rios, but for us, it's CSS everytime!
You cannot beat the view from your room at CTI if you have an ocean view. The views are amazing! We never really found that it was too "hotel like" either. We knew we were on a tropical island. No beach vendors was a plus, and Couples allowed one vendor per day to set up at a predesignated spot...so if you wanted to shop, you could. The food was delicious! Warning about CSS - If you don't like stairs for whatever reason, stay away from CSS. Lots of climbing. We were forewarned by countless folks about the stair issue at CSS - so wanted to throw that out there too.
Thanks so much for the great advice and opinions! I have been looking at videos of both CSS and CTI resorts and they are beautiful in their own ways. I'm not really concerned about the hotel type rooms, if I can get my coffee delivered to the room and sit on that patio overlooking the beautiful ocean, how can I complain about that!! Food and drinks will be great and the beach will not be like CSA but it look like the pools will be nicer, plus the smaller resort of CTI looks appealing to us!! Keep the comments coming!!! Thanks again!
We have been to CSA 3 times and tried TI last year because of the super promotion they had going on. We loved TI as much as CSA and are going back to TI this year in August! No, the beach is not as big as CSA but plenty big enough for us. We also like the closeness of the resort, didn't feel like we were in a hotel. The balcony with the beautiful view of the ocean and the island is absolutely breathtaking! The room area we stay in is not very far from the ocean. We like being on the 3rd floor because you can see so much more. At CSA we always stayed on bottom floor because of stairs, (no elevators there) but would have liked to have been higher for the view. Don't get me wrong, we still love CSA and want to go back there sometime soon. Hope we can get some of our friends from TI to try it in the future to meet some of our friends we made at CSA, just to see. They are quite different, but we love them both. Hope you enjoy yourself, we always do at Couples!!
We also want to encourage you to try CTI. After our initial trip to CSS in 2006, we decided we wanted to try each of the other Couples resorts. We put off going to CTI until last (2009) thinking we would like it the least. Well, we were wrong! We really liked everything about the resort and the staff are the very best. We had an Ocean Junior Suite and our view was fabulous. We didn't think twice about the building being more hotel like. Food, activities were all great and the beach while not like the Negril resorts was still very nice. No vendors and very quiet and relaxing. We have been to CSS and CN a second time and head back to CTI this December. CSA was not for us.
We have been to all (4), CN for the first (3) trips, then CSS, then CSA then 2x to CTI.
We really like CTI, it has been said that it is "like a hotel". Yes it is completely different from CSA. The CTI buildings have indoor corridors like a hotel but CSS, and CN are traditional buildings with corridors on the back to access the rooms like a motel.
The staff at CTI were the most friendly of any of the (4) resorts. The beach is not huge but it is plenty big and Nobody walking by and no jet skis hanging around outside the ropes all day trying to get your attention.
The restaurants were really good, and we like having the 2 large pools so that if you want some quiet time you can get away from the swim-up bar.
Our fav. is Premier Ocean, third floor, main building. It doesn't get any better than that for us. Not sure about all of the levels. We like being in the main building, coming down the steps to the lobby and all the activity in the mornings. Not to mention my favorite place in the whole world next to home, and that is the view of the Island from the patio right off the main lobby. Makes me want these next 28 days to go by in a flash.
Was wondering if anyone had any room type suggestions/preferences for CTI? Seems like they have a few choices on the website! Do all the rooms have balconies that have a view of the ocean?
As for views of the ocean, if you want straight on, get a Premier. Deluxe may have a palm tree or in the case of building 1, you look can look at the ocean or the resort. Superior are in Building 5 and over the cove and the villa next door. Garden views have view of the spa and lawns. Room size varies even if you are in Premier. Building 2 probably has the biggest and does have the newest Premier rooms. If you are on the 2 floor, you will be in line with the rooftop Martini Bar. You look out over the main pool to the ocean. If you have a Premier in Building 3, you look from your balcony over the beach, pier or swim up bar to the ocean and to the private island, but it feels like you are right above the ocean. There is not the constant motor boat or jet ski noise which is very nice. As the resort is in a cove, there is no traffic on the beach and not much in the water in front of the beach.
We visited CSS and it is a nice resort. CTI does have more to offer for restaurants and now has some room service as mini bars in all the room. They do have a cart that will come and get you to take you to the beach at CSS if you want. My suggestion is that if you do decide on CTI, that you do a trading places day at CSS. This will at the very least give you a feel for the resort. We have friends that transferred there last year for the end of their vacation. The are spending their whole vacation at CTI this year. We also have friends that stayed at CSS during the renovations of CTI and have not returned. Only you know what you want for your vacation experience. All I can say is that CTI is like hotel I have ever stayed at with its warm and friendly staff, great food and new friends we meet each year.
We had a one bedroom suite and it blew our socks off. WOW, was all we kept saying when we saw it. We have come to believe that the room DOES in fact make a difference when vacationing. We used to always just go for the basic room level thinking that we were just in in to shower and sleep. CTI was the first time we really went all out on a room then we were upgraded to the one bedroom on top of what we thought was the best for US.
After that experience we found that we did enjoy a nicer room. We feel the extra space, nicer accommodations, etc somehow adds to the ambiance/overall experience of the trip. Now IF we can afford it we book the best level we can get while still being able to go for 2 weeks in April and 9 or 10 days in August.
My advice is to book the nicest room level you can COMFORTABLY afford. ALL of the rooms at CTI are wonderful. Even the ones that face the gardens are nice as the grounds are beautiful.
We had Deluxe Ocean in building 4, 1st floor. Very convenient but a little noisy in the late evening when they swim up bar was closing. Everyone is a bit loud that time of the evening at the swim up bar and we liked to sit on our balcony with a glass of wine
Last year we booked Premier hoping to get building 2 or 3 but was upgraded to one of the big suites on the top floor of building 3. Buildings 2, 3 and 4 have the best ocean views, building 1 has some large foliage that could block some rooms and building 5 faces a different direction that the rest of the buildings.
cfthunder- Thank you for your post! We just got back (May) from our first time to Jamaica and to Couples. We chose CSA (but had a hard time choosing). we did enjoy it very much, but I would like to venture out and try another resort. I am conflicted with what direction to go so I am always appreciative of the "veterans" posting their opinions. Certainly doesn't make choosing any easier; but gives some insight to what we might like about each place. I would love to get away from the beach vendors and though we do love the beach the smaller, more intimate setting might be for us - at least to try. We know we liked CSA a lot and would have no problem returning; I just think it's worth our while to expand our Jamaican horizons! Thank you all for the great insight!
We've been to CTI 3 times (married there and 2 trips back since). We love CTI. The beach is smaller but it's private and not as small as everyone makes it out to be. We are trying out CSA May next year for a change in scenery. Definitely take advantage of the trading places to go spend a day at CSS.