Many people struggle to choose between Sandals Ochi and Sandals Royal Plantation when booking their trip to Ocho Rios. To help you decide on the best one to visit for your next getaway, here is our comparison of Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation.
Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation: Cost
Sandals Ochi is the most affordable Sandals resort, not just in Jamaica, but across all Sandals resorts in the Caribbean. Rates start at $243 per person per night.
As Sandals Royal Plantation is an all-butler-suite resort, it’s no surprise that a stay here is more expensive than at Sandals Ochi. Rates at this resort start at $368 per person per night.
It’s important to keep in mind that prices can fluctuate throughout the year, due to demand and seasonal promotions. There are also plenty of deals and discounts you can get. If you’re planning a last-minute getaway, both resorts offer a free fourth night on any three-night stay.
No matter which Sandals resort you choose, your all-inclusive rate will cover a ton including airport transfers, all meals, all alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, a huge range of watersports and land activities, entertainment, and tips and taxes.
That said, if you’re looking for a truly special getaway, you may get more for your money at Sandals Royal Plantation since every room includes butler service. If this isn’t something that is important to you, however, Sandals Ochi may be the better value option.
Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation: Overview
While these two gorgeous resorts are located next door to one another, they are very different.
If you’re looking for a quiet vacation with a blissful and serene atmosphere, then Sandals Royal Plantation is your best choice. One of the highest-rated Sandals resorts and a smaller and more intimate setting, it offers personal butler service and a tranquil vibe.
If you want a more lively atmosphere with plenty to see and do, Sandals Ochi is a better fit. There are all sorts of activities to enjoy here and a fun-filled vibe.
It must be noted that even though both of these resorts are part of the stay-at-one, play-at-seven program, guests at Sandals Ochi are not able to visit Sandals Royal Plantation to take advantage of the facilities and restaurants there.
If you choose to stay at Sandals Royal Plantation, you may visit Sandals Ochi, however. No matter which resort you choose to stay at, you’ll have access to the facilities and amenities at all the other Sandals resorts in Jamaica.
Why Choose Sandals Royal Plantation?
Aside from being ultra-exclusive, Sandals Royal Plantation is unique due to its small size and the Butler Elite Service as standard.
Attentive staff and your personal butler will always be on hand should you require a refreshing drink or snack, and they’re happy to help with all sorts of other things too, such as scheduling excursions, making reservations, and liaising with housekeeping.
With staff that are always ready to help, stunning pools, beautifully manicured gardens, and luxurious accommodations, it’s no wonder that this resort is hailed as one of the best in the Sandals portfolio, with 65% of visitors choosing to return.
Guests particularly praise the laid-back and intimate atmosphere and the fact that they were able to access all the restaurants and amenities at the nearby Sandals Ochi.
Why Choose Sandals Ochi?
As the largest Sandals resort in Jamaica, Sandals Ochi has plenty on offer for everyone. Guests can enjoy multiple pools, lots of entertainment and activities, and a wonderful selection of 16 restaurants and 11 bars.
This resort perfectly combines a lively and fun-filled atmosphere with pure luxury and is divided into two different sections.
The hillside is the more luxurious side of the resort, where swanky villas can be found, each complete with full butler service and private pools. The beachside is where the lively and vibrant Ocho Rios Beach Club is located, best for soaking up that party atmosphere.
Sandals Ochi vs. Royal Plantation: Location
As these two resorts are located directly beside one another, there’s no real winner when it comes to choosing which is best in terms of location.
Both resorts are located in the beautiful town of Ocho Rios and are close to many local attractions. Just a 90-minute drive from the Sangster International Airport, both resorts include free airport transfers, so getting to either Sandals Ochi or Sandals Royal Plantation will be a stress-free experience.
Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation: Beaches
Also since they are next to each other, there isn’t much difference in their beaches.
If you’re headed to Sandals Royal Plantation, you’ll find that the two on-site beaches echo the tranquil atmosphere found throughout the resort. With clear water and soft sand, they’re great to relax and enjoy a refreshing drink or snack delivered by your butler.
Exclusively for use by guests of Sandals Royal Plantation, West Beach is the perfect spot to relax in a tiki hut, lie back on a daybed, or hang out on one of the romantic swings. If you’re looking for something a little more adventurous, East Beach is surrounded by a coral reef. With its clear calm waters, it is just right for snorkeling or scuba diving. Alternatively, hop on a glass bottom boat tour to explore some of the colorful underwater marine life!
Sandals Ochi has one long beach that is split into three sections where different types of guests like to mingle.
The first section of the beach is at the Sandals Beach Club. With comfortable beach chairs, it’s the perfect place to relax and soak up the sun. The second stretch, in the Riviera Seaside Village, is a popular and lively spot for those who like to eat and drink. Bustling with bars and restaurants, it’s the place to indulge in wonderful food with even better views.
Arguably the most popular stretch of the beach is situated in front of the Riviera Beachfront Tower though. This one boasts not only plenty of beach chairs to relax in but also a wide range of watersports to enjoy.
When it comes to choosing the best resort based on beaches alone, Sandals Ochi offers a better variety, but Royal Plantation has a more peaceful option.
Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation: Activities and Amenities
Sports and Activities
Both Sandals Ochi and Sandals Royal Plantation boast a huge range of activities and amenities, the majority of which are included in the all-inclusive rate.
There are all sorts of watersports available at both resorts. If you’re a certified scuba diver, you can dive up to twice a day.
Sandals Ochi has more other options, including windsurfing, aqua trikes, sailboats, snorkeling, kayaks, and paddleboards. Land activities available include shuffleboard, beach volleyball, rock climbing, pool tables, day and night tennis, squash, table tennis, board games, lawn chess, bocce ball, horseshoes, and access to a state-of-the-art fitness center.
Sandals Royal Plantation also offers a range of both water and land activities. Water sports include glass-bottom boat rides, snorkeling, kayaking, Hobie Cat sailing, and paddleboarding. Land sports are a little less varied than those at Sandals Ochi, as there is only tennis and the fitness center on offer. If you’re looking for more activities, you can go to Sandals Ochi.
Both resorts include access to the Sandals Golf & Country Club, if you’re a golfer. The all-inclusive rate includes greens fees and transportation to and from the country club.
Sandals Ochi boasts 7 amazing pools (plus private plunge pools at some of the suites), with swim-up bars at three of the pools.
Since Sandals Royal Plantation is a much smaller resort, there isn’t as great of a choice here when it comes to pools. If you enjoy swimming, you may want to head next door to Sandals Ochi.
Both of these resorts have a full-service Red Lane Spa, where you can purchase a variety of restorative treatments. There are also all kinds of offsite excursions that you can book.
Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation: Rooms and Suites
There are only 74 suites at Sandals Royal Plantation. All the suites are oceanfront and qualify as a Love Nest Luxury suite. With a luxurious yet traditional interior, every room comes with personal butler service.
You do have a selection of different suite types to choose from here, including more exclusive options such as the Governor-General Oceanfront One Bedroom Butler Suite or the Royal Oceanfront One Bedroom Butler Suite.
Sandals Ochi offers way more variety in accommodations. From the Butler Village tucked away in the hillside to the Honeymoon Romeo & Juliet Bedroom Villa Suite, there’s plenty of choice no matter what level of luxury you’re hoping to experience.
There is also a range of suites available poolside, beachfront, or overlooking the beautifully manicured gardens. When it comes to rooms and suites, Sandals Ochi wins because of the great selection on offer.
Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation: Food and Drink
Boasting 16 restaurants (the most of any Sandals resort), and 11 bars (including the Caribbean’s first-ever speakeasy), Sandals Ochi really takes the cake on this one!
With a wide range of cuisine to choose from, including Southern, tapas, Mediterranean, sushi, seafood, pizza, Asian, Italian, French, and classic Caribbean, there’s little left to desire when dining at this resort. Many of these gourmet restaurants also boast water views or sit along the beachfront.
Sandals Royal Plantation, on the other hand, only has five restaurants. These serve seafood, French, Caribbean and Jamaican, British pub fare, grilled items, and international cuisine. That said, guests of Sandals Royal Plantation can enjoy all of the restaurants over at Sandals Ochi too.
At both Sandals Ochi and Royal Plantation, you can also take advantage of room service or request private dining options like a candlelight dinner on the beach (for an extra fee). If you are in a club-level room, you can enjoy room service between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m., and if you’re in a butler suite, you can enjoy room service 24/7!
Sandals Ochi vs. Royal Plantation: Nightlife
Another clear win for Sandals Ochi is also in terms of nightlife. With 11 bars, including the first speakeasy in the Caribbean, two swim-up bars, and a fun piano lounge, there are plenty of options no matter how you like to party.
There’s also plenty of nightly entertainment, including shows in an amphitheater, live music, a chocolate buffet, karaoke, a talent night, and even beach parties with fire dancers!
Sandals Royal Plantation has just two bars, including the Caribbean’s finest (and Jamaica’s only) caviar and champagne bar. With an expansive wine cellar, it’s truly the best place for refined nightlife.
However, Sandals Royal Plantation guests need not feel limited, as they can enjoy all of the entertainment and bars at Sandals Ochi.
Now that you’ve read our comparison of Sandals Ochi vs. Sandals Royal Plantation, which would you choose for your Jamaica honeymoon or couples’ vacation? Let us know in the comments!
If you still can’t decide or would like help planning your trip, visit our Contact Us page to get in touch with one of our trusted travel advisors. They can aid you in planning your dream trip from start to finish!