A four star experience at a five star Jamaica resort

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Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica Review


By the time we arrived in runaway bay to spend four nights at Grand Bahia Principe. We were all growing tired of the constant packing and unpacking from our short term visits across the island of Jamaica. 

I visited grand bahia Principe Jamaica during the Covid pandemic so some facilities were limited or altogether out of service.

Both the kids and teens club were closed for the duration of our four night stay at bahia Principe Grand Jamaica. This was disappointing as the presence of kids and teens clubs is a major draw for families like mine. Who have both young children and teenagers. 

The kids and teens clubs were part of the reason we chose to book grand bahia Principe. Above the abundance of other resorts available in Jamaica. So naturally, we felt a little cheated. 

Especially when I compare bahia Principe to our time spent at the grand palladium. Who kept their kids club open. 

The staff at bahia Principe Grand Jamaica were mostly miserable. Although somewhat better than those of grand palladium Jamaica. 

Our room which featured plain furniture. Was right next to the cleaners cupboard. Where they would go to smoke and complain. Our room at bahia Principe was not sound proof so the noise was disruptive. 

My biggest complaint is their pest problem. Roaches entered our room at night on more than one occasion. As our long term trip to Jamaica progressed I understood that Jamaica generally has a huge problem with cockroaches. For which, the beautiful palm trees are to blame. However. Seeing roaches hanging around the elevators of a five star hotel at night is something I refuse to get used to! 

Bahia Principe has its good and bad points. It's definitely not the five star hotel that it claims to be. Not clean enough in places and the crowd wasn't my scene. 

The people at a place can definitely have an effect on your overall experience. So bear this in mind when thinking about where to book. 

More about our room.. 


View from our junior superior suite balcony at Bahia Principe Jamaica

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We stayed in a junior superior suite at the grand bahia Principe Jamaica. The room featured bland. Cheap looking furniture. Two Queen size beds which were comfy apart from the fact the pillows and bed linen weren't clean enough! I. HATE. DIRTY. PILLOWS!! 

Dirty curtains led to our basic balcony on the 6th floor at grand Bahia Principe Jamaica. A balcony, which overlooked the resort with a sea view in the distance. I didn't like the fact that our balcony could be overlooked by almost everyone else! The balcony was neither cosy. Nor private. Which I would expect at a five star resort. 

Our bathroom featured a stained jacuzzi tub, which wasn't very powerful. As far as jetted tubs go. Plus a separate shower unit and simple toiletries. 

The TV was really small for a resort claiming to be five star. With only about 10 Fuzzy, non HD channels. So pointless. Chromecast didn't work with it. 

The Internet kept cutting out, and you have to pay extra for strong WiFi. Which, personally I find to be tacky. If you say you're five star and an all inclusive. You should offer good Internet to all of your guests by default.

The entertainment provided by Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica was excellent. With a variety of activities for all ages throughout each day. 

We all really enjoyed the evening outdoor family movies. Where you could enjoy a film under the stars. 

After the film. We would head upstairs for some live outdoor entertainment. Some nights a reggae band performed and on one night, the best steel pan performance I had ever seen took place. My family are Caribbean, so I've seen quite a lot of steel pan playing in my life. I had no real expectation fot the performance at bahia Principe Jamaica. I was pleasantly surprised by the performance. The band had so much energy. Incorporating some impressive dancing and acrobatics into their gig. 

On another evening, we all enjoyed a silent disco. With two live djs to switch between. 

The only disappointment with the entertainment at Grand Bahia Principe was that some scheduled activities didn't take place, and we were never informed beforehand. 

Bahia Principe Grand Jamaica had a delicious abundance of food options. Even for us vegetarians. We were well fed. The vegetables always tasted fresh. Except for their mushy corn on the cob. Some days the same food items would taste better than on other days which was a let down. Such as fried dumpling and plantains. There was lots of variety. With different options daily. Traditional Jamaican food is always available and always a good idea! 

Some favourites of mine were a spicy bean stew. Chickpeas salad. Soy patties. Plantains and fried dumplings on good days! The best nachos ever. Which were green nachos. Not the yellow ones. Served with cheese sauce and salsa. Yum! Plus pasta cooked fresh in front of you. 

All dining options were buffet style, which I don't like. Simply because people can act like impatient cattle. It wasn't possible to book a seat at the non buffet style restaurants, and it wasn't very clear whether any of them were actually open during our stay. 

In your room is a free minibar. Which can be replenished daily. There are loads of drinks choices included in the all inclusive package. Plus snacks at any time of day. You just gotta know where in the resort to find them! 

Grand Bahia Principe Jamaica has some decent amenities. A spa for an additional fee. I can't comment on the quality of the spa as I wasn't wiling to pay extra to find out. Free gym access included in all bookings. Private beachfront with a beach bar and loungers. A beachfront butler service. Which is only for premium members. I think it should be for all guests if we're talking 5 star resort. I've been to other 5 star hotels where all guests receive a drinks and snacks waiting service from the comfort of their sun loungers. 

For an additional cost there are romantic couples activities at Bahia Principe. These included a candle lit dinner on the beach which looked wonderful and a couples jacuzzi with massage.  

Overall. Bahia Principe Grand Jamaica is not the five star resort that it claims to be. The resort is a bit too big for me. However. Not full to capacity because of the current global crisis. 

Major improvement is needed from staff. We literally only experienced one exceptional staff member. Who made us feel comfortable and appreciated. He deserves to be Head of the hospitality team if you ask us. 

Despite the negatives. We all really enjoyed ourselves and recommend grand bahia Principe for their private beach. Variety of food options and impressive entertainment.

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