Three restaurants, one with Caribbean fare and one offering themed dinners
Small private beach with non-motorized water sports
All-inclusive option available
Events such as happy hours and bonfires
Shuttles for shopping trips (for a fee)
Five-minute drive from Sangster International Airport
No free shuttle to airport
Ashtrays around property a nuisance for non-smokers
Noise from nearby airport
No poolside or beach service
Food gets mixed reviews
For travelers who want to enjoy a resort experience but still prefer a more intimate hotel, the Coyaba Beach Resort is an attractive upper-middle-range option. The 50 plantation-style rooms are spacious if a bit dated, and guests won’t feel crowded or cramped at the private beach (even though it's small). An all-inclusive option lets guests dine and drink on the property, but many rate the food as mediocre, so it may be better to stick to the room-only plan and explore the local restaurants in Montego Bay; the so-called Hip Strip is around 10-minute taxi ride away. The airport is just a five-minute drive away, and the resort does experience plane noise. Still, couples will likely appreciate the spa services, lush gardens providing shade and privacy, and the quiet pool.
Surrounded by trees and flowers, the open lobby is spacious and restful, with bright accents and welcoming wicker furniture. A large desk serves as the reception area, and information on local attractions, tours, and shuttle times are available. The public computer is tucked around a corner for privacy, but the rest of the room is colorful and cheerful, with an open door to the central gardens and the rest of the resort. The main dining area is also visible, with open porches to view the gardens and property.
The intimate, tranquil vibe makes this property best-suited to couples; families and teens may prefer a resort with more activity. The water sports offered at the beach are free, but all non-motorized, to help preserve the quiet vibe.
A short drive from the airport, but a bit far from the main drag in Montego Bay
Located right off of the A1 highway, Coyaba Beach Resort is easy to find but still manages to feel quiet and secluded. It's just a five- to 10-minute drive from the airport, but a few minutes farther to the Hip Strip in Montego Bay, which is lined with restaurants and nightclubs. Taxis are readily available, but ones obtained through the hotel tend to be pricier. The many trees, plants, and cultivated gardens help to keep the hotel separate from the surrounding area, as well as other nearby resorts. The close proximity to the airport can make this hotel noisier than others in Montego Bay, but not nearly as loud as some neighboring resorts since the planes do not fly directly over the hotel.
Spacious, plantation-style rooms with balconies, though they're starting to show their age
The clean, spacious plantation-style rooms have vaulted wooden ceilings, and dark wood furniture -- but they don't quite live up to the advertised four-star status. The beige bedding with green accents, and the gold-framed generic hotel art, are a bit on the plain side, and some of the amenities expected for a four-star property (such as robes) are not offered. There are also minor signs of wear, such as the dirty grout between the terra-cotta tile floors. There are two main room types -- Deluxe Rooms or Junior Suites; the Junior Suites have sofa beds, a separate seating area, and mini-fridges. Guests can book garden or ocean views for either type. A spacious villa with multiple bedrooms and separate dining area is also available, perfect for large groups or wedding parties. All rooms have air-conditioning, coffeemakers, and French doors leading to balconies.
Three restaurants, a small private beach with non-motorized water sports, and a small, tranquil pool
Though Coyaba Beach Resort is smaller than other nearby all-inclusives, the hotel has a reasonable offering of activities and property features. The rectangular ocean-view pool is small but tranquil, and is surrounded by palm trees, cushioned lounge chairs, and umbrellas. The private beach is definitely small, but the resort's intimate size means that it's unlikely to get crowded. Non-motorized water sport rentals here are free for guests, including sailing, snorkeling, and kayaking; motorized water sports are not available, to help the resort maintain the tranquil vibe. Poolside and beachside food and drink service are not offered, surprising for a resort that has an advertised four-star status.
The fitness center has a decent selection of (dated) machines and vaulted white wood ceilings. There's also a tennis court, a playground, and small spa. In addition, the resort hosts regular events, including happy hours, afternoon tea, cocktail parties, and weekly bonfires. A shopping shuttle (for a fee) is available for guests who want to explore the many nearby shops and restaurants, and drivers are usually on hand to bring guests to specific areas, restaurants, or attractions.
There are three restaurants on the property: The Vineyard, an open-air Caribbean restaurant; Docks Bar & Grill, serving sandwiches and salads for lunch, and offering themed dinners such as Seafood Night; and the Polo Grounds, with an equestrian decor theme and clubby vibe. The food gets mixed reviews and some feel it is inauthentic, so it may be worth skipping the all-inclusive package.
Simple, affordable options for a more intimate wedding -- unlike the mega-resorts
Wedding Size: Up to 100 people (many only prebook 30 rooms); only one wedding per weekend
Extra Fees: $5 fee for each non-hotel guest (not bad, compared to the $150 plus fees elsewhere); fee for each outside vendor; wedding coordination fees from two to 10 people, up to 60 plus people; if 25 percent or more of your wedding guests stay at a different hotel, there's a location fee
Wedding Packages: The basic wedding package includes a marriage officer, all certificates and licenses, a bouquet and boutonniere, 36 photos (on a CD), a two-tiered wedding cake, a live calypso serenade (or recorded music of your choice), a bottle of champagne and a private candlelit dinner.
Photographers and Videographers: Prices are based on each roll of film and for every 30 minutes of video footage; may bring outside vendors for a fee, plus an additional guest fee for each.
Music Options: Choices range hourly from calypso trio to reggae band; may bring outside musicians for an outside vendor fee and an additional guest fee for each.
Food and Drinks: Plated dinner or buffet options range per person; kids' menus and vegan, kosher, and glutenfree options available upon request; open bar ranges per person depending on the type of liquor and number of hours; fee to staff a cash bar.
Cakes: Two-tiered cake included in package (serves 30), each additional tier will feed another 25 people, and will cost $125
Spa Treatments: The spa is located directly off the road and offers only facials, massages, and mani/pedis; no bridal suite available.