Sandals Resorts Comparison Guide
Which Sandals Resort?
All 15 Sandals Resorts are popular romantic destinations for couples of all ages.
Each resort has its own unique atmosphere and individual set of strengths. All
resorts include the luxury all-inclusive package, wedding services, and the
complimentary honeymoon package. All resorts offer luxury accommodations, spas,
watersports, land sports, nightly entertainment, swim-up bars (exception: Sandals
Carlyle, Sandals Royal Plantation), and fitness centers. While keeping in mind that
each resort has its own strong following, this article will provide a comparison
by presenting the unique strengths and attributes.
Sandals Grande Antigua
Known as the “Honeymoon Capital of the World”, is located about
15-minutes from the Airport in Antigua’s Dickenson Bay region and is considered
one of Sandals most romantic getaways. Two resorts in one with a large selection of
accommodation choices, the resort offers the traditional Caribbean section featuring
lush gardens and the newly constructed Mediterranean Village section. The Caribbean
section offers the Rondoval suites which are stand-alone villas with private garden
area and plunge pools. In addition, the Caribbean section offers standard room
categories from the entry level deluxe through scenic oceanview categories. The
Mediterranean Village features a 7-story building with a variety of oceanview suites
as well as luxurious 1BR Villas with private pools and whirlpools. Both sections are
fully open to all guests. The resort has 11 restaurants and offers 24-hour dining
coverage. Along with 5 pools and 5 whirlpools, Sandals Antigua has one of the best
beaches in Antigua and throughout the entire Sandals brand. Adding another dimension,
a casino has opened next door with a direct walkway from the Sandals property.
Sandals Royal Bahamian
Located on Cable Beach near Nassau Bahamas and one of the most popular Sandals
destinations. Its airport proximity, airline availability, and lower ticketing cost
make Sandals Royal Bahamian a very convenient and highly demanded resort. Considered
the most elegant of the Sandals Resorts, included is complimentary Rolls Royce
airport transfers for Butler level guests. The dining is exceptional with such favorites
as the French cuisine of Baccarats, white gloved service of the Crystal Room, and 8 other
restaurants. In addition, the resort features its own private offshore island with private
beaches, pool & swim-up bar, and Stewfish featuring traditional Bahamian Cuisine.
Accommodations are available in the all concierge service Windsor building which now has
a swim-up suite category, the newly renovated Balmoral Tower, and the intimate garden villas
within the Royal Gardens.
Sandals Emerald Bay
Located within the Exumas Bahamas, the resort is was renovated and opened up as Sandals
Emerald Bay during January 2010. Known for its secluded location, guests enjoy a relaxed and
quieter atmosphere. The resort features among the best beachfront suites in terms of close
proximity to the beach. Emerald Bay has the largest spa among the Sandals brand. The resort is
also a golfer's destination as it has on property a championship Greg Norman designed 18-hole
golf course along the ocean. An on-property marina supports up to 150 yachts. Sandals Emerald
Bay attracts the 40+ age group on average.
Located Southern Barbados on Maxwell Beach just outside of Bridgetown and within 15 minutes from
the airport. The Sandals Barbados was purchased from Couples Resorts near the end of 2013 and
was previously the Casuarina Beach Resort before Couples. While Sandals kept the resort
open for a period of time to accommodate booked guests, it is now closed for a $65
million renovation with a planned reopening of January 28, 2015. The accommodation design will
be similar to the Grenada resort and include new swim-up river suites. The original 4
restaurants are being expanded to 11 including the first Indian restaurant within the brand.
Basically the resort is being redone from the ground up, so we are very interested to visit and
experience the final produce.
Situated on 17-acres along the pristine Pink Gin Beach within 10 minutes from the airport,
Sandals LaSource Grenada offers guests one of the highest levels within the Sandals brand.
Sandals LaSource features Sandals' most elaborate suites to date including SkyPool penthouses
featuring private infinity-edge plunge pools, Millionaire suites, and Rondovals. The resort
presents 10 restaurants, a chic style, and features and a relaxed atmosphere a bit on the
quieter side overall.
The Montego Bay area offers three Sandals Resorts: Sandals Montego Bay, Sandals Royal
Caribbean, and Sandals Carlyle - all three resorts have exchange privileges with each other
utilizing an ongoing complimentary shuttle. In Ocho Rios,
Sandals Royal Plantation guests also have full access to Sandals
Grande Riviera restaurants and facilities.
Sandals Montego Bay
The first Sandals resort and considered the liveliest of all the resorts throughout the entire
brand. This resort gets better and better each time we visit. Best described as a high energy but easy going atmosphere, Sandals likes to say the fun
never stops at Sandals Montego Bay. Featuring the best talent in Jamaica as well as a very
fun and outgoing entertainment staff, guests can be assured of having a very spirited
vacation. In fact such enjoyment that the resort has the highest customer return rate
throughout the brand. The resort is known for its fine beach stretch but its pools are smaller
compared to many other Sandals resorts. The resort borders the airport making it very
convenient but guests do hear and see flights taking off during the day. In terms of
accommodations, rooms have been upgraded to Sandals luxury standards and the Roc Bay Villas
Sandals Royal Caribbean
Located about 5 minutes up the road from Sandals Montego Bay, the resort offers a more refined
atmosphere while utilizing some British traditions including afternoon tea. Similar to Royal
Bahamian, the resort also offers a private offshore island featuring a Thai restaurant, another
pool, and the best beach at the resort. Another unique feature of this resort is it provides
Continental Breakfast in Bed by request basis for all accommodations. The resort has a line of
exceptional swim-up suites and the beachfront suites have all been recently renovated. Eight
restaurants are on property including the intimate Le Jardinier. The resort features numerous
pools well positioned throughout the property with all rooms having access to a nearby pool.
Having more the feel of an intimate Bed & Breakfast setting, the hotel is located at end
of the Montego Bay Hip Strip. Carlyle is the least expensive of the Sandals resorts and lacks
many of the amenities found within the other resorts. Carlyle does not have a beach on property
although some guests use the public beach across the street. Other guests will utilize the
beaches at the other Montego Bay Sandals resorts utilizing the complimentary exchange privileges
and shuttle. The hotel specializes in providing exceptional service and the staff is among the
best and most inviting you will find anywhere. Being a small hotel of just 52 rooms, the staff
offers personalized service will often address guests by name.
Among the highest demanded Sandals resorts due to its setting on Negril’s world-class
7-mile Beach. A luxury beach resort by nature, Sandals Negril presents some of the most unique
suites within the Sandals brand including luxury beachfront swim-up suites, suites
with private pools, and 2-story butler loft suites. Sandals Negril characterizes the
laid-back Jamaican spirit but is also a fairly active social resort with a lively entertainment
staff leading the way. The main theme and focus of Sandals Negril is the beach with all
accommodations just steps away along and some located right at beach edge. Seven restaurants
are featured including dining right on the beach at the casual Barefoot by the Sea. Downtown
Negril is a cab ride down the beach and offers additional activities and nightlife options.
Sandals Negril tends to attract a younger more casual crowd on average.
Located about 90 minutes away on the secluded Jamaican southern shore, Sandals constructed
and opened Whitehouse during 2004 and is the product of the perfected Sandals formula. With
three clusters of 4-story accommodations and a main central center, the resort actually has
the appearance of a beach condominium complex. The major strengths of the resort is its large
span of secluded beach stretching over 2 miles, very large and attractive pools, a modern
luxury design, and fine service and dining. Sandals Whitehouse is also the only resort to
offer ocean views from every room and suite. Sandals Whitehouse offers fantastic value and
has emerged as one of the most popular resorts within the brand. Sandals Whitehouse attracts
age groups across the spectrum.
Sandals Grande Riviera
Located 1.5 hours away from the airport and the resort is the largest in terms of number of
rooms with 529. Known for its lush Jamaican foliage, the resort meanders up through
the hillside with over 45 acres of gardens, streams, and enclaves to explore. For golfers,
guest of Grande Riviera can take advantage of the complimentary green fees at Sandals Golf
& Country club just minutes away. The resort is actually two resorts in one, the Riviera
beachfront section and the Hillside Great House section across the road. The resort provides an
efficient shuttle system to assist moving guests between sections. As both sections were once
individual resorts, each has its own set of resort facilities including restaurants and pools
although the largest pool is located in the Great House section. Unique to this resort is the
Hillside Butler Village which includes 80 villas, all with semi-private or private pools.
The resort's recently constructed Riviera Beach Club has added to the resort's appeal as a
beach destination. Besides Sandals Carlyle, Sandals Grande Riviera has
the least expensive deluxe category rooms among the brand. With 15 restaurants, guests have
plenty of exceptional dining choices. This is a fun resort with plenty of activities and
entertainment. We generally recommend this resort for younger couples who have the energy and
desire to spend time in both sections in order to utilize the full offerings of the resort.
Sandals Royal Plantation
Located in Ocho Rios, Royal Plantation is a small historic retreat of just 74 rooms and the only
all butler resort within the brand. Each room/suite includes butler service as well as ocean
views. This resort is known for its pampering service featuring such items as a complimentary
pillow menu. In addition to exceptional dining, it is the only Caribbean resort with a
champagne and Caviar bar. With an old world charm and elegance, cigars will be prevalent and
English style afternoon tea is offered on a daily basis. This resort is quiet and relaxing,
nice beach, and has a very small pool with no swim-up bar, a spa, 3 restuarants, and an English
style pub. Built along the cliffside, the resort has considerable steps and we would not
recommend this resort for anybody with mobility issues. Royal Plantation guests also have full
complimentary access to Sandals Grande Riviera located directly adjacent. Sandals Royal
Plantation features an elegant atmosphere and generally attracts older aged couples on
average although the resort can be appealing to younger couples who seek a quieter getaway
and pure relaxation.
All three Sandals St. Lucia resorts are located approximately 2
hours from Hewanorra Airport and 15 Minutes from Castries Airport. Only smaller planes can
land at Castries and usually involves a connection through San Juan. All three resorts are
within 20 minutes of each other and have full exchange privileges. St. Lucia is a spectacular
island and all three of the resorts have very unique settings.
Sandals Grande St. Lucian
The most luxurious of the three St Lucia resorts and the standout accommodation category is the
Rondoval suites with private plunge pools as well as a group of swim-up rooms. The resort has a
modern design with a large luxurious lobby & surrounding restaurants serving as the primary
entertainment focal point at night. The resort buildings are all on level ground and almost
all internally connected by hallways. Outdoors is a very impressive pool area along with a
beach overlooking magnificent Rodney Bay. The resort is located on a peninsula between Rodney
Bay & the Atlantic Ocean. The resort is in walking distance to historic Fort Rodney.
Originally constructed as a Hilton property in 2000, this resort is considered the liveliest
and often described as the most "Americanized" of the three St Lucia resorts.
Sandals La Toc
Unique property that runs along the beach and up into resort's ocean cliffside offering
numerous accommodation choices ranging from deluxe rooms to the Millionaire Villa Suite
with private pool. It tends to draw a more adventurous crowd seeking more of an authentic
rustic St Lucian atmosphere. Comparing the three St Lucian resorts, this resort involves the
greatest amount of step climbing as it is constructed on a varying terrain from the beach up
into the hillside and along the cliff edges. The premier accommodations are located in the
bluff area up along the cliffs and offer spectacular ocean views along with luxury suites
and villas with private pools. Also on property is a scenic 9-hole golf course. Large pools
and an attractive beach complete this well rounded resort.
Halcyon is the smallest and most intimate of the three Sandals St. Lucia resorts. Simple and
tranquil in nature, the resort is best known for its exceptional personal service, well
maintained lush gardens, and local crafted Caribbean architecture. The accommodations are a
bit more simple and very in tune with St. Lucia’s environment providing guests a
surrounding outdoor feel at night. The resort features a series of 1 & 2-story accommodation
buildings surrounding the central lobby and restaurant area. Sandals Halcyon is the least
expensive of the three St. Lucia resorts and the highest accommodation level is Romeo &
Juliet Beachfront Walkout Butler Room, the only category with butler service. The resort has
excellent dining led by the signature Pier Restaurant over the ocean as well as 5 other dining
options. The resort offers large pools and a quality calm beach facing the open Caribbean
Sea. The resort attracts couples throughout the age spectrum but has a slightly older crowd
on average, and is the quietest at night among the three St. Lucia resorts.