Sandals Montego Bay vs Ochi: Our Luxury Resort Comparision

Sandals Montego Bay and Sandals Ochi are two of the best all-inclusive, adults-only resorts in Jamaica. Both are known for their exciting, social atmospheres, stunning beaches, luxurious range of amenities, attentive staff, and quality inclusions. Additionally, both resorts cater to couples and serve as perfect destinations for dream-worthy honeymoons or anniversaries.

But, alas, you can only choose one resort (or can you? – we’ll get back to that) for your romantic getaway. Using our personal experiences, insider knowledge, and the insights of former guests, we’ve created a concise guide that will help you answer the question “Should I stay at Sandals Montego Bay or Sandals Ochi?”

Sandals Montego Bay vs Ochi: The Basics

A Quick Summary: Sandals Ochi

SANDALS Ochi: All-Inclusive Resort In Ocho Rios, Jamaica

Modern chic and private exclusivity, meet in the heart of Jamaica in a resort that features the best of both worlds. On one side of paradise, discover the beachside Caribbean Riviera with a hot beach club. 

  • Location: Ocho Rios, Jamaica
  • The rooms and suites are the most affordable because it is a larger resort with more available rooms. Specifically, the Club Level rooms offer excellent value.
  • Sandals Ochi is spread out over a vast estate that includes the beachside Caribbean Riviera, the Garden of Eden, and the Butler Village. This gives you more places to explore, but it also means that you have to travel to different parts of the resort via shuttle and it can take a while to get around.
  • Both Sandals resorts are social, but Sandals Ochi has a stronger party atmosphere than Sandals Montego Bay.
  • Sandals Ochi is home to an exciting beach club with pools, DJs, and cabanas.

A Quick Summary: Sandals Montego Bay

SANDALS Montego Bay: All-Inclusive Resort In Jamaica

The first-ever Sandals all-inclusive resort, Sandals Montego Bay, now has even more ways to enjoy luxury while reveling in the spirit of romance and fun on Jamaica’s coastline. 

  • Location: Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • In our opinion, Sandals Montego Bay is the most romantic resort of the two and would be our first choice for a honeymoon or special anniversary.
  • Sandals Montego Bay has a more intimate feel than Sandals Ochi and you can walk to most everywhere in the resort.
  • The resort is recently renovated (a process that took four years and hardly left an inch untouched) and feels new, clean, and polished.
  • Sandals Montego Bay is located 5 minutes from Sangster International Airport (MBJ), which means you will hear some noise from the planes, but you also get to spend less time in transit. On the other hand, Sandals Ochi is about 1 hour and 45 minutes from Sandals Montego Bay and the airport.
  • When you stay at Sandals Montego Bay, you receive “stay at 1, play at 2” exchange privileges with Sandals Royal Caribbean. This means you can enjoy all of the pools, restaurants, bars, entertainment, and activities at 2 resorts for the price of one.

The Nightlife and Parties

Nightlife at Sandals Ochi

Both resorts are known for their active, social atmospheres, but Sandals Ochi is the best choice if you are looking for nightlife and partying. Many of the parties take place at the Ochi Beach Club, located in the Caribbean Riviera section of the resort, while the hilltop Butler Village tends to be a little more lowkey.

Also, because Sandals Ochi is such a large resort, even if some of the people aren’t feeling social or bring down the mood, you can always find other people to hang out with.

carnival sizzle night party at sandals ochi

Sandals Montego Bay is slightly more laidback than Sandals Ochi, but it’s a great option if you definitely want to experience some nightlife, but it’s not your top priority. Additionally, if you aren’t interested in the nightly theme at Sandals Montego Bay, you can take a complimentary shuttle and enjoy all of the shows, facilities, restaurants, and bars at Sandals Royal Caribbean.

Both Sandals Montego Bay and Sandals Ochi offer themed nights and you will receive a schedule that contains info about day and nighttime activities/entertainment when you arrive.

The Activities

Pools at Sandals Ochi

Sandals Ochi is more of a pool resort, while Sandals Montego Bay is better for beach lovers because the beach is expansive, sandy, and perfect for lounging. Sandals Montego Bay has 7 pools and 3 whirlpools, while Sandals Ochi doesn’t have as many pools but they are larger with beautiful designs.

Longbeach at Sandals Montego Bay

One of the most attractive inclusions offered by Sandals resorts is unlimited PADI-certified scuba diving in truly gorgeous locations. If you don’t have your PADI certification, you can take a course from the resorts’ PADI centers for an additional fee. The divemasters who lead the dives at both resorts are excellent and very conscious of your safety.

scuba diving at Sandals Montego Bay

Guests at both resorts can also enjoy a variety of watersports, including snorkeling, kayaking, paddle boarding, and Hobie Cats. However, only Sandals Montego Bay offers waterskiing and wakeboarding, while Sandals Ochi has glass-bottomed boats.

If you want to take a break from the beach, you have access to the gym and fitness classes, tennis courts, bocci ball, table tennis, board games, and billiards.

Each resort has its own Red Lane Spa where you can indulge in spa treatments, such as coconut oil massages on the beach, body scrubs, and manicures. There are often promotions that offer a spa credit so keep your eyes open for these!

Spa at  Sandals Ochi

Both resorts offer similar add-ons including private candlelit dinners on the beach, cabana rental with butler service, photography packages, and excursion packages.

The Restaurants and Bars

Bar at Sandals Ochi

There are 16 restaurants and 11 bars at Sandals Ochi, which is a lot when compared to even other Sandals resorts. In comparison, Sandals Montego Bay has 12 restaurants and 6 bars.

Restaurants at Sandals Montego Bay

The quality of the food served at Sandals Ochi and Sandals Montego Bay meets the same high standards, but we think Sandals Montego Bay is the best choice for foodies because you can also enjoy the 9 restaurants at Sandals Royal Caribbean. In addition, that includes the ever-popular Royal Thai, an exotic Thai restaurant located on Sandals Royal Caribbean’s private island.

Both resorts offer plenty of fresh seafood, vegetarian options, surf ‘n’ turf, and international cuisine.

The Rooms and Suites

As we mentioned early, Sandals Montego Bay recently underwent a nearly head-to-toe renovation. The beachfront swim-up suites are a real highlight as are the beachfront millionaire one-bedrooms.

However, some parts of Sandals Ochi can feel a little outdated. Specifically, some of the Sandals Luxury and Club Level rooms are a little “vintage”, one could say, but the villas and suites in the Butler Village are absolutely gorgeous.

In our opinion, the rooms at Sandals Montego Bay are better, but they are also more expensive.

Neither resort offers overwater bungalows. However, you can find simply stunning overwater bungalows at Sandals South Coast, Sandals Grande St. Lucian, and Sandals Royal Caribbean (these are the best).

These are our favorite rooms at Sandals Montego Bay:

  • Beachfront Swim-up Millionaire One Bedroom Suite w/ Patio Tranquility Soaking Tub – These suites are the premiere rooms at the resort and feature gorgeous detailing. The suite itself has a separate living room that opens onto the patio. The patio allows direct, swim-up access to the pool and unobstructed beach views. The room décor is contemporary with aqua blue accents and a spa-inspired bathroom. This suite comes with the services of a private butler and private BMW transfers from the airport. Price: from $813 per person per night.
Beachfront Swim-up Millionaire One Bedroom Suite  at Sandals Montego Bay
  • Beachfront One-bedroom Butler Suite w/ Tranquility Soaking Tub – This is one of our favorite butler suites at Sandals Montego Bay and is great value for your money. The room was recently remodeled and feels brand spanking new while featuring incredible ocean views as well as a balcony with a soaking tub and an outdoor dining area. This room also comes with private butler services and prices start from $546 per person per night.
Beachfront One-bedroom Butler Suite
Crystal Lagoon Swim up Club Elite Luxury Room
  • Caribbean Seaside Oceanview Luxury – If you are on a budget, this is the best room for you. Although it’s not as new as other accommodations at the resort, this room is perfectly comfortable. It’s a great choice for couples who don’t plan on ordering room service and want to spend most of their time enjoying the facilities and beach. Price: from $370 per person per night.

These are our favorite rooms at Sandals Ochi:

  • Riviera Honeymoon Beachfront One Bedroom Butler Suite – This suite feels more old-school opulent than the accommodations available at Sandals Montego Bay. It features mahogany details, plush furniture, and an atmosphere that is more maximalist than light and airy. The bar area is stunning with a marble countertop and plenty of space. The suite itself has gorgeous ocean views from the balcony and a massive spa bathtub in the bathroom. Price: from $473 per person per night.
  • Great House One Bedroom Butler Suite – If you want to be in the center of the action and don’t mind a little noise, this is the best room for you. Located directly in front of the main pool area with beautiful ocean views, this spacious suite comes with a balcony, a separate living room with its own dining room, and a huge master bedroom. The aesthetic is on the vintage side, but this is definitely a high-value room considering that it’s a Butler Elite level suite. Price: from $378 per person per night.
  • Honeymoon Grande Luxe Poolside Villa Club Level – This is our favorite Club Level room for several reasons. First, the pool is directly in front of the room so it feels like a swim-up suite. The pool itself is small, but very few people use it so it feels like a private pool without the hefty price tag. Second, it’s slightly secluded, which makes it a great retreat from the more social areas of the resort. Third, the price is great. Price: from $295 per person per night.
  • Riviera Honeymoon Beachfront Club Level – We included this suite on the list because it offers unobstructed ocean views and a balcony, which is more difficult to find at Sandals Ochi than at Sandals Montego Bay. The décor features muted tones and there is a small seating area in the bedroom. Price: from $335 per person per night.

The Inclusions

woman and man on the SUP paddleboard

Sandals inclusions are truly some of the best offered by any all-inclusive resort in the Caribbean. All guests receive these inclusions in the cost of their stay at Sandals Ochi and Sandals Montego Bay:

  • Unlimited dining at all of the restaurants and bars
  • Unlimited premium liquor and Robert Mondavi Twin Oaks wines at the restaurants and bars
  • Roundtrip airport transfers
  • Unlimited PADI-certified scuba diving and equipment
  • Snorkeling equipment, kayaks, SUP paddleboards, Hobie Cats, sailboats, aqua trikes, and access to other water sports
  • Beach volleyball, pool volleyball, day and night tennis, table tennis, shuffleboard, croquet, basketball, bocce ball, billiards, and lawn games
  • Access to the swimming pools, whirlpools, fitness center, and aerobics classes
  • Use of the daybeds on the beautiful beaches and by the pools
  • A stocked in-room bar in every room
  • WIFI in every room
  • Entertainment, shows, parties, and themed nights
  • All taxes, fees, and gratuities (with the exception of tips to your private butler, if you have one, and spa therapist)
  • Complimentary transfers and “stay at 1, play at 2” exchange privileges with Sandals Royal Caribbean (only at Sandals Montego Bay)
  • Waterskiing, tubing, and wakeboarding (only at Sandals Montego Bay)
  • Glass-bottom boats and windsurfing (only at Sandals Ochi)
  • Green fees and multiple rounds at Upton Estate Golf & Country Club (only at Sandals Ochi)
  • Access to Ochi Beach Club (only at Sandals Ochi)

The Costs

Beach club at Sandals Ochi

The all-inclusive cost of stay is generally cheaper at Sandals Ochi than at Sandals Montego Bay. This is primarily due to the fact that the rooms are older at Sandals Ochi and some of the communal spaces are in need of a little repair.

However, this doesn’t mean that the resort itself feels rundown. The Ochi Beach Club and the main pool area in particular are gorgeous.

For an additional cost, you can book excursions around the island, photography packages, private cabanas with butler service, spa treatments, and private candlelit dinners. Even if you don’t buy any add-ons, you will be more than happy with the inclusions at either Sandals resort.

The Conclusion

Both Sandals resorts are great options for your honeymoon if you are social, enjoy luxury, and love beaches. Sandals Ochi is better for couples on a budget who love pools, don’t mind a little noise, and are looking for a bit more of a party vibe. Sandals Montego Bay is better for couples who are looking for new accommodations, like to be social and active, have a slightly larger budget, and also love luxury.

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