Ocho Rios (affectionately called Ochi by the locals) in Jamaica is home to several world-renowned tourist attractions and beach resorts, one of which is the largest Sandals resort in the Caribbean: Sandals Ochi. Spanning over 100 acres of tropical gardens that feature 105 pools, 16 chic restaurants, 11 bars (including the first speakeasy in the Caribbean), tons of land & sea activities, and a stunning private beach, it’s no wonder many people call it the Garden of Eden in Jamaica.
Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway for your honeymoon, celebrating your anniversary, or ticking off things from your bucket list, let’s get to know Sandals Ochi more and find out why it is the perfect beach resort to be in Jamaica.
Sandals Ochi Beach Resort: A Jamaica All-Inclusive in Ocho Rios
About Sandals Ochi
Is it an All-Inclusive Resort?
Yes, Sandals Ochi is an all-inclusive resort. A wide range of luxury amenities and activities await guests, such as unlimited fine dining at 16 restaurants, unlimited drinks (premium liquors and coffee), day & night entertainment, land & water activities, and so much more. There’s even a free wedding for those staying for three nights or longer.
Is it couples only?
Sandals Ochi Beach Resort is a part of the brand of Sandals Resorts across the Caribbean designed as a romantic adult couples-only luxury getaway destination.
Everyone else who wants to experience an unforgettable vacation experience can instead go to one of their Beaches Resorts, which is their all-inclusive, family-friendly line of resorts in the Caribbean.
About the Rooms and Accommodations
Whether you are looking to be near the action or something more private and quiet, you will find the perfect room in one of Sandals Ochi’s three villages, each with its unique style and ambiance.
While the resort is pretty big, they have shuttle services called Hops which go back and forth from the seaside to the hillside every 10 minutes.
The Riviera Seaside Village & Riviera Beachfront Tower
Conveniently located near the beach and facing the sea, the Riviera Beachfront Tower is perfect for those who are looking for fun day & night parties and a picturesque view of the Caribbean sea.
Majority of their world-class restaurants and bars line up the beach, with plenty of fun activities that will keep you busy (or relaxing) throughout the day. Behind the Riviera Beachfront Tower, you can also find their Honeymoon Hideaway Cottages.
Great House Village
Picture this: a quiet and private setting with scenic views of the landscape and the sea. That is what awaits you at the Great House Village.
Their rooms at the Great House Building have oversized balconies that offer stunning views of the Caribbean sea from St. Ann Mountain’s hillside and Sandal Ochi’s tropical gardens, not to mention the Great House Pool from below.
Like the Great House Village, the Butler Village is tucked away in the mountainside, giving couples a more private and relaxing atmosphere.
And as you can guess from the name, each of their 6 room types has a dedicated butler who will attend to and provide you with the best possible experience during your stay.
Depending on what room you choose, you’ll also get to wake up with views of the sea from afar, the tropical gardens, and a private pool.
For some people, eating good food is one of life’s greatest pleasures. But add in some breathtaking views, and you’ll find yourself at a loss for words as to how enchanting the experience will be.
With over 16 world-class restaurants, it will be hard to pick a favorite among them so let your senses be the judge.
Vista Gourmet / Sky Terrace
With delectable seafood cuisine (their pan-seared snapper & clams is a must-try) coupled with al fresco dining at their Sky Terrace overlooking the Caribbean Sea, there’s nothing you won’t love at Vista Gourmet.
You can find Vista Gourmet on the roof deck of Riviera Beachfront Tower.
Reef Terrace Restaurant
Situated on a cliffside terrace near one of Jamaica’s most stunning reefs, The Reef Terrace will delight your taste buds with a taste of authentic Pan-Caribbean favorites like jerk chicken and pepper pot soup.
Aside from the mouthwatering food and scenic views, they also have a gazebo that makes for the perfect spot to get married.
When it comes to jerk (which is a style of Jamaican cooking), The Jerk Shack is the place to be. From pork to chicken to sausages, along with its Caribbean flair, you’ll get a taste of Jamaica’s signature flavor in every bite.
If you are looking for a taste of Oriental flavors, then Kimonos has got you covered. Being a Teppanyaki-style restaurant, not only is the food delicious, but their skillful chefs will also entertain you with a show of their culinary tricks and skills while cooking your meal in front of you.
Southern Table Restaurant
What food comes to mind when you think of Southern cooking? That is right, comfort food! And that is what the Southern Table Restaurant brings to the table.
From the homely ambiance of the place to the warm hospitality to some good old Southern fried chicken, you will feel like you’re at home.
Other Restaurants at Sandals Ochi Beach
Craving for more? There are still plenty of restaurants to choose from that will surely fit you and your partner’s mood.
Treat yourselves with delicious snapper and sunset views at the over-the-water restaurant Kelly’s Dockside, enjoy classy evening dinners at the Le Gourmand, indulge in some hot-from-the-grill seafood at The Mariner, and so much more.
With tons of cuisine to choose from, you’ll want to taste them all.
Whatever you do, do forget to get Sandals Ochi’s signature cocktail: the Bob Marley:
Activities & Things to Do
A part of what makes Sandals Ochi one of the best getaway destination for partners is the fun couples activities you can do. Whether it be land or water sports, festive parties, or some pampering at the spa, you’ll never run out of things to do on your vacation.
You can also check their daily brochure called ‘Footsteps,’ which lists down the activities for the next day.
Ochi Beach Club
If you’re looking to enjoy a day in the pool with views of the Caribbean Sea while sipping on your favorite drink from one of their swim-up bars, or join in on a line dance and some Jamaican-style Ho’Down, then you’re in the right place.
Aside from the infectious vibe of daytime partying, they also have a dedicated Aqua Center where you can learn scuba diving for a nominal fee of $120 (or more if you’re looking to be fully certified).
Nightlife and Entertainment
The entertainment around Sandals Ochi is pretty much alive throughout the day, but the vibe is definitely something when night falls.
Whether you’re dancing to the beat at their White Chocolate Party or getting blown away by the Broadway-worthy singing performance at the Rabbit Hole Speakeasy (ask the staff for the password) with your favorite drink, you and your partner will surely keep yourselves busy all night long ;)
Sailing the waters of the Caribbean Sea on a Hobie cat is one experience you should not miss out on, especially when the weather is nice.
A guide will take you on a tour out the sea, where you can also get a scenic view of the mountains and coastline while enjoying the waves and the breeze.
Snuba brings the best from both snorkeling and scuba diving and puts them together: swimming and breathing underwater without carrying any heavy equipment with you. Plus, you can do it even if you don’t know how to swim.
While this one is not included on their all-inclusive package (requires an additional fee), snuba diving is a bucket list experience you should try at least once. You can check out their guided Ocho Rios Snuba Tour if you’re interested in availing this one.
Sandals Ochi’s private beach is a haven for excursions and watersports activities like scuba diving or riding an aqua trike (to name a few), where you’ll get to appreciate the beauty of the Caribbean Sea while having fun at the same time.
Of course, you can also chill and soak up some sun on one of their beach chairs while sipping on a mojito or any of your favorite drinks.
Red Lane Spa
Pamper yourselves and bring your romantic vacation experience to the next level with the Red Lane Spa. For an additional fee, you can book one of their services, such as a relaxing couples massage or a revitalizing facial or body treatment.
They also have fitness centers and a Yoga-Pilates studio where you can burn away some extra calories, a steam room, plunge pools, and secluded gardens.
Where is Sandals Ochi located?
You can find Sandals Ochi along the northern coast of Jamaica in the port town of Ocho Rios. Surrounded by lush tropical gardens and a picturesque view of the sea, it truly is a Garden of Eden in Jamaica.
How Far is it from the Airport?
If you are coming from Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, the resort is 99.2 km east, while at Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, the resort is 107 km northwest. Both routes are a 90+ min drive from the airport to Sandals Ochi.
As part of their package, they have roundtrip airport transfers to and from Sandals Ochi so you only have to think about the many adventures ahead. While the drive is quite long, the scenic view of the landscape (especially along the coast) more than makes up for it.
. . .
With the endless food selections, colorful cocktails flowing and the luxury of locking up your wallet for a week, what’s not to love about an all-inclusive resort? It is a perfect travel vacay for someone that doesn’t want to overthink lengthy itineraries, worry about booking reservations or whipping out a credit card for every little thing.
In other words, for someone who wants an easy, yet fun, travel experience.
My Experience at Sandals Ochi
Just about eighteen years ago, Peter and I traveled to the all-inclusive Sandals Montego Bay for our honeymoon. Being that it was one of the first out-of-the-country trips we ever took, being on a resort vacation not only felt safe, but was super easy to plan too. Now, with a bunch more countries under my belt and a travel blog, we would be returning to Jamaica to celebrate the grand (re)opening of the newly renovated Sandals Ochi in Ochos Rios. A four night all-inclusive party. Score.
Sandals Ochi is a sexy resort with over 100 acres, 16 trendy restaurants, 11 bars (including the Caribbean’s first speakeasy) and, of course, a selection of eclectic pools fit for any mood.
We arrived at the airport and were welcomed into the Sandals Lounge for a local Red Stripe beer while we waited for our transfer. Though Sandals has other locations in Jamaica closer to the airport, this particular resort would be an hour and forty-five minute drive. Maybe I’ll grab another beer for the road.
When we arrived, we quickly learned that the resort had three sections, each featuring different restaurants and entertainment. Three times the pleasure. Bonus.
The HOP, a complimentary bus, came around every few minutes to pickup and drop off guests between each location.
We would not be going hungry at this all-inclusive resort, because they had over a dozen eateries to choose from. My plan was to eat at every one of them. Four days to eat at sixteen restaurants, 4 a day. Totally doable.
The first meal was at The Jerk, a restaurant with Caribbean flair, where we indulged on tender jerk pork, potatoes and corn bread. A lively group of musicians played their “drums” in front of a bus the entire time.
Other dinners included Dragon Eel rolls at Soy, conch fritters at the Reef Terrace and a flaming hibachi show at Kimono.
Breakfasts were buffet-style, though we alternated the location for more variety. Once was at Vista Gourmet overlooking the ocean, while another was at their Southern Table restaurant that gave you a glimpse of their large pool. Lunch was sometimes pizza or more jerk chicken, occasionally both. In the end we only made it to half of the sixteen. Not for lack of effort.
The Pool & Ocean
There are a whopping 105 pools at Sandals Ochi, of course this number includes the public and private ones. But, either way, you will never be deprived of some type of water to jump into. Why else did you come to an oceanside resort in Jamaica?
The main pool is where we spent most of our time, mostly because it’s where a majority of the action was and the busy swim-up bar. On any given afternoon there could be a couples scavenger hunt in progress or an intense game of bingo.
The ocean sets the perfect scene for paddle boarding, kayaking, snorkeling or simply lounging on a floating ring. Or opt for an afternoon catamaran tour with Island Routes where you will learn how to dance The Butterfly.
The beauty about the “all-inclusive” part to this resort is that cocktails were included in the inclusive. Bob Marleys and Jamaican Smiles were flowing in abundance at Sandals Ochi. There was no drink menu, people just knew what these concoctions were or ogled one at another table and just pointed to indicate “I want one of those.”
My sister in law who is a diehard Sandals Resort fan, told me to order a Jamacan Smile for her, a mix of strawberry daiquiri, piña colada and Jamaican rum cream. That can’t suck. And it didn’t.
Plus Sandals had a decent red wine. While eating at Soy I had a glass (or two) of Mondavi Shiraz. A little piece of home in Jamaica.
One evening we got privy to the secret password, Gumshoe, to enter the Rabbit Hole Speakeasy. I had been to another secret speakeasy in Savannah, which was amazing. I was eager to see how this would compare.
In this exclusive swanky lounge mixologists created unique cocktails to suit every palate.
Though the endless parties, food and watersport fun was incredible, my favorite night was catching this sunset with my husband. I can check that one off our Couples Bucket List. Doesn’t get much more romantic than that.
The actual grand opening party of Sandals Ochi was held on our last night around the main pool. Silver chairs were set all in a row and a dozen catering tents lined one side filled with gourmet dinner options. This was the place to be in Jamaica tonight.
We were in attendance with Shaggy, the Prime Minister and even former Bachelorette Desiree Hartsock, along with her husband Chris (who are both even more stunning looking in person, if that is even possible).
The grand finale was a bring-down-the-house performance by reggae singer, Shaggy that left everyone singing “It wasn’t me” for days to come.
With world-class hospitality & accommodation, amenities, activities, cuisine, and a perfect balance of lively and quiet moments, what’s not to love at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort?
So if you’re thinking of going on a romantic escapade with your significant other and making lasting memories, look no further than Sandals Ochi, a lovely piece of heaven on Earth in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.
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