Best Spring Break Party Hotels in Jamaica

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A team of Oyster reporters spent weeks exploring 40 hotels in Jamaica. We slept in the beds, lounged by the pools, ate in the restaurants, and even sampled the nightlife, all with an eye toward selecting the most distinguished properties. Here's a list of our favorite hotels for a party-hearty spring break -- places with great beaches, free-flowing booze, a party atmosphere and fun activities.

  1. Negril is a nonstop party during spring break, and Negril Tree House has a prime location in the heart of the action -- right on Seven Mile Beach and next door to great bars and restaurants. It's not an all-inclusive, but with so many nightlife options to explore around town, you'll be glad for the flexibility. The large, rustic rooms rooms have great balconies and hammocks, and guests only have to step outside to feel sand beneath their toes.

  2. For an upbeat all-you-can-drink mega-resort, the fresh-built Iberostar destroys the competition -- better food, liquor, service, and activities for less cash. The energetic Star Friends team leads daily games at the beach and pool, knowledgeable bartenders make strong drinks with recognizeable liquor brands (and sometimes have secret, signature drinks like Andre's "Andre the Giant"), and water sports, including kayaking, parasailing, and even Scuba tours, are free. The beach has long stretches of soft, white sand, shade from low-lying palms, and full drink service by the water. The Montego Bay airport, and the bars and clubs on Montego Bay's hip strip, are about a 20-minute cab ride away. Keep in mind, though, that Rose Hall tends to draw families as well as partiers, and that this Iberostar allows a maximum of two adults per room -- which could significantly affect the price of your stay.

  3. A friendly resort with a mellow beach, free minibars, and a surprisingly solid buffet -- the Riu Negril is a great value. Rooms aren't spectacular, and many activities require a long walk across the sprawling resort, but most guests are sold once they join revelers on the dance floor.

  4. Across the street from the beach, the upscale Sunset has a warm, helpful staff, intimate setting, and great food. In the off season this relaxing Bali-style retreat is a far cry from the crowded chaos at most all-inclusives, but during spring break season in Negril, chances are things will be a little rowdier.

  5. There's no pool, lobby, or dazzling features, but Catcha's quaint cliffside huts come with warm service, open-air showers, breathtaking sunsets, comfortable beds and simple homemade cuisine. Most guests are too focused on the blissful setting to notice the grainy TV reception or absence of a phone. There's no beach, but Rick's Cafe and other party spots are within walking distance.

  6. A brand-new mega-resort, the Grand Palladium feels like a shopping mall but is expansive enough for a range of travelers -- whether they're seeking privacy, romance, or fun. It has five pools, large rooms, name-brand liquor, tasty breakfasts, mini-golf, and more -- all for lower rates than lesser-equipped all-inclusives. Spring breakers choosing between the Grand Palladium's two, mostly interchangeable resorts -- the Lady Hamilton and the Jamaica -- might want to opt for the more adult Lady Hamilton, which has a topless pool and beach.

  7. Just opened in September 2008, the still-sparkling Riu all-inclusive mega-resort provides ample and eclectic food, name-brand liquor, a great beach, a 24-hour sports bar, a huge pool, a modern gym, a free liquor-stocked minibar, and an array of water sports. Spring breakers won't be bored at this bustling, noisy property.

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