Pros

  • Oceanside hotel with lovely sea views from many vantages
  • Pool has plastic lounge chairs and ocean views
  • All rooms have balconies with ocean views plus king or double beds
  • Free snorkeling equipment for guests
  • All guests receive a free souvenir shot glass with stays
  • Free Wi-Fi -- though reach may be limited
  • Children under 12 stay free
  • Free parking
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Cons

  • Beach is too small and narrow for relaxing on lounge chairs
  • Rooms are tired and could use an update
  • Mosquitos can be bad
  • Currently very few features, though may change with construction
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Bottom Line

Ocean Palms is a two-pearl oceanfront hotel that's a quick walk from Ocho Rios’ bustling commercial heart. The 23 humble rooms are a mix of fan or air-conditioned units that look a bit dated, plus king or double beds, free Wi-Fi, and private ocean-view balconies or terraces. For even more ocean views, there's a pool surrounded by plastic lounge chairs plus a sandy oceanfront. However, it's best used for swimming to the offshore reef. Amenities may improve with ongoing work -- there was extensive construction during our 2017 visit -- and an oceanfront restaurant and bar is in the works. For an alternative oceanfront stay with a pool, ocean views, and air-conditioned rooms, it’s worth checking into Silver Seas Resort Hotel instead.

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Amenities

  • Cribs
  • Internet
  • Pool

Oyster Hotel Review

Ocean Sands

Scene

Quiet hotel with great ocean views but little in the way of features

Ocean Palms was formerly known as Ocean Sands, which was an Ocho Rios staple for many years. The hotel changed ownership in December 2016 and construction was underway during our early 2017 visit. As it stands, though, there isn't much to the property, even with the improvements that were underway. The hotel’s simple lobby has brown leather couches, a flat-screen TV, and a small shop for sundries. While a restaurant is in the works, it wasn't open during our visit. Overall this is a pretty quiet spot, and guests seem use the hotel as a base for exploration rather than lounging about and taking in the gorgeous ocean views. We wouldn’t be surprised, though, if the hotel’s energy picks up after renovations, as it has lots of potential for a simple stay that's just a short walk to Ocho Rios’ bustle. As it stands, Ocean Palms attracts a variety of guests, but we saw a mix of twentysomething travelers and Jamaican guests during our visit.

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Location

Oceanfront location near a thriving offshore, reef and short drive to breathtaking waterfalls 

Ocean Palms has a beautiful oceanfront location that's a five-minute swim from one of Jamaica’s best coral reefs. It’s situated in central Ocho Rios, a three-minute walk to the local market, grocery stores, an ATM, and plenty of restaurants. The town’s bustling craft market is a five-minute walk from Ocean Palms, as is the bus park (the Jamaican term for open-air bus stations). Ocho Rios Bay Beach is the best nearby strip of sand, and is a 15-minute walk or eight-minute drive away. Dunn’s River Falls, a gorgeous series of climbable step waterfalls and swimmable lagoons, is a 10-minute drive away. Less visited, but still worth a trip, the Blue Hole has waterfalls and a turquoise swimming hole that's a 25-minute drive from the hotel. Montego Bay, the Jamaican north coast’s commercial and tourist heart, is an hour-and-45-minute drive away, while it's two hours to Kingston and its airport by car. Montego Bay’s airport is a bit closer, and will take about 95 minutes to reach by car.

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Rooms

Dated, humble style with fans or air-conditioning, plus flat-screen TVs and private ocean-view balconies

The rooms at Ocean Palms are simple and dated, but get the job done for travelers who will likely be out in the sun during the majority of their stay anyway. Beds are either kings or doubles, with floral-patterned bed spreads and bed runners in neutral-toned tans, greens, and reds. Some rooms spice up the look, with leopard-print bed skirts (it's either fun or kitschy depending on your tastes). Rooms are painted in pastel greens or shades of pinks and walls are bare, with the exception of vintage Jamaica tourism photos of Dunn’s River Falls and the like. Bathrooms are pretty basic, with Formica vanities and tiled stall showers. Only bar soap is included, so don’t forget your toiletries. The best features are the private, ocean-view balconies or patios with plastic chairs that overlook the pool and azure Caribbean Sea. Irons, ironing boards, and hairdryers can be borrowed from the front desk. During our visit, Wi-Fi was only available in the first- and third-floor rooms, but the hotel was in the process of installing it more widely.

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Features

Small beach, 24-hour pool, free snorkel equipment, and a snack shop

Ocean Palms has limited amenities, which isn't surprising given its value status. Without a doubt, the freshwater pool is the hotel's top feature. It’s open around the clock and is surrounded by lounge chairs. The to-die-for ocean views from the pool are the best attribute. And while the oceanside location is amazing, the adjacent beach is narrow and best used as a jumping-off point for swimming out to the nearby reef. Luckily, Ocean Palms offers free snorkel equipment (with a deposit). The hotel’s open-air restaurant and bar were under construction during our visit, but when finished, will have a thatched roof and fabulous ocean views -- check ahead with the hotel to make sure it's complete if the lack of on-site dining is a deal breaker for you. There’s a microwave that guests can use and the hotel’s refrigerator is available for food and drink storage. The snack shop is open 24 hours and sells sundries, water, beer, and soda. There’s free parking and free Wi-Fi in the lobby, as well as in most guest rooms. 

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Things You Should Know About Ocean Sands

Also Known As

  • Ocean Sands

Address

14 James Avenue, Jamaica

Oyster Hotel Review

Ocean Sands

Scene

Quiet hotel with great ocean views but little in the way of features

Ocean Palms was formerly known as Ocean Sands, which was an Ocho Rios staple for many years. The hotel changed ownership in December 2016 and construction was underway during our early 2017 visit. As it stands, though, there isn't much to the property, even with the improvements that were underway. The hotel’s simple lobby has brown leather couches, a flat-screen TV, and a small shop for sundries. While a restaurant is in the works, it wasn't open during our visit. Overall this is a pretty quiet spot, and guests seem use the hotel as a base for exploration rather than lounging about and taking in the gorgeous ocean views. We wouldn’t be surprised, though, if the hotel’s energy picks up after renovations, as it has lots of potential for a simple stay that's just a short walk to Ocho Rios’ bustle. As it stands, Ocean Palms attracts a variety of guests, but we saw a mix of twentysomething travelers and Jamaican guests during our visit.

See More Scene

Location

Oceanfront location near a thriving offshore, reef and short drive to breathtaking waterfalls 

Ocean Palms has a beautiful oceanfront location that's a five-minute swim from one of Jamaica’s best coral reefs. It’s situated in central Ocho Rios, a three-minute walk to the local market, grocery stores, an ATM, and plenty of restaurants. The town’s bustling craft market is a five-minute walk from Ocean Palms, as is the bus park (the Jamaican term for open-air bus stations). Ocho Rios Bay Beach is the best nearby strip of sand, and is a 15-minute walk or eight-minute drive away. Dunn’s River Falls, a gorgeous series of climbable step waterfalls and swimmable lagoons, is a 10-minute drive away. Less visited, but still worth a trip, the Blue Hole has waterfalls and a turquoise swimming hole that's a 25-minute drive from the hotel. Montego Bay, the Jamaican north coast’s commercial and tourist heart, is an hour-and-45-minute drive away, while it's two hours to Kingston and its airport by car. Montego Bay’s airport is a bit closer, and will take about 95 minutes to reach by car.

See More Location

Rooms

Dated, humble style with fans or air-conditioning, plus flat-screen TVs and private ocean-view balconies

The rooms at Ocean Palms are simple and dated, but get the job done for travelers who will likely be out in the sun during the majority of their stay anyway. Beds are either kings or doubles, with floral-patterned bed spreads and bed runners in neutral-toned tans, greens, and reds. Some rooms spice up the look, with leopard-print bed skirts (it's either fun or kitschy depending on your tastes). Rooms are painted in pastel greens or shades of pinks and walls are bare, with the exception of vintage Jamaica tourism photos of Dunn’s River Falls and the like. Bathrooms are pretty basic, with Formica vanities and tiled stall showers. Only bar soap is included, so don’t forget your toiletries. The best features are the private, ocean-view balconies or patios with plastic chairs that overlook the pool and azure Caribbean Sea. Irons, ironing boards, and hairdryers can be borrowed from the front desk. During our visit, Wi-Fi was only available in the first- and third-floor rooms, but the hotel was in the process of installing it more widely.

See More Rooms

Features

Small beach, 24-hour pool, free snorkel equipment, and a snack shop

Ocean Palms has limited amenities, which isn't surprising given its value status. Without a doubt, the freshwater pool is the hotel's top feature. It’s open around the clock and is surrounded by lounge chairs. The to-die-for ocean views from the pool are the best attribute. And while the oceanside location is amazing, the adjacent beach is narrow and best used as a jumping-off point for swimming out to the nearby reef. Luckily, Ocean Palms offers free snorkel equipment (with a deposit). The hotel’s open-air restaurant and bar were under construction during our visit, but when finished, will have a thatched roof and fabulous ocean views -- check ahead with the hotel to make sure it's complete if the lack of on-site dining is a deal breaker for you. There’s a microwave that guests can use and the hotel’s refrigerator is available for food and drink storage. The snack shop is open 24 hours and sells sundries, water, beer, and soda. There’s free parking and free Wi-Fi in the lobby, as well as in most guest rooms. 

See More Features

Best Rates

Amenities

  • Airport Transportation

  • Babysitting Services

  • Balcony / Terrace / Patio

  • Beach

  • Cabanas

  • Cable

  • Concierge

  • Cribs

  • Dry Cleaning

  • Internet

  • Kids Allowed

  • Laundry

  • Pool

  • Poolside Drink Service

  • Supervised Kids Activities

  • Swim-Up Bar

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.