- The assured quality of Beaches all inclusive resorts
- Infant & kids' programs
- Sesame Street characters and activities
- Fun pools and water park
- Scuba and golf are all-included
- Single Parent months
Beaches Boscobel- Background
Beaches is the family resort brand of the Sandals chain of all inclusive resorts; Beaches Boscobel is on the north coast of Jamaica, 10 miles east of Ocho Rios. The resort has guestrooms and suites on 22 acres.
Guide Review: Beaches Boscobel Resort & Golf Club
The drive from the Montego Bay airport took two hours, during our visit; check recent visitor comments, as time varies with the state of the road. Flying to Ocho Rios is also an option.
Grounds & Pools
The resort is built steeply up from the beach: an elevator serves the beach and rooms. There's no need to take stairs unless you want the exercise.
Beaches Boscobel has a large main pool and a kiddie pool, and also has the Pirates Island Water Park, with eleven waterslides and more.
Also at Boscobel: tennis courts; outdoor pool tables; fitness center with excellent classes; spa with steam room.
The beach is pretty and has shady palapas but don't expect a grand sweep of ocean (-- Beaches Negril, in another part of Jamaica, has that.) Still, for young kids the beach is fine. Strong swimmers may be frustrated that swimming is confined to a small cordoned area. Also, during our visit, outside the cordoned swim area, vendors floated all day in small boats. Thankfully, they were low-key; check recent visitor comments for updates about the beach scene.
For those who love underwater-life, Beaches Boscobel offers not only free snorkeling trips but free scuba. Sign up early at the watersports desk. Kids 10 and up can try scuba. On our visit, neither the snorkeling nor the scuba sites were terrific, but weather kept us from reportedly better areas; and anyway the first-time-snorkeling kids were thrilled. Younger kids can try the glass-bottom boat*.
On the beach, guests can have fun with Hydrobikes (water tricycles), windsurfing, kayaks, and sailboats/Hobie Cats.*
In short: there's much to do, but Get There Early to sign up for watersports, and read activity schedules closely. For ex., windsurfing might happen only at a certain hour.
Beaches Boscobel: Land Activities
Beaches Boscobel has typical activities such as billiards, ping-pong, volleyball, shuffleboard. Check the daily schedule for activities such as treasure hunts, basketball, fitness classes, etc. Some kids -- and grown-ups-- disappear into the videogames center.
All inclusive golf is a deal for golfers, but note that you have to pay for a caddy (and tip as well), and the golf course is at another Sandals resort, 20 minutes away by shuttle bus. Junior golf is a bonus too, with golf clinics for kids and clubs provided.*
Beaches Boscobel shines with its kids' programs, starting with infant care. 2- and 3-year-olds had their own group, and after 5 pm, nannies were available.* Older kids' programs had evening hours.
Beaches has a special arrangement with Sesame Street; kids can enjoy special activities with favorite characters.
In the kids programs for ages 4 to 7, activities included arts and crafts, tennis, pool games... Ages 8 to 12 added snorkeling, bike tours, bonfires, etc.
For teens, the situation was muddier during our visit... The remotely-located teen center didn't attract kids; a teen coordinator organized activities, but they were hard to find. Teens don't want a strict schedule, I was told; it's more a flow thing, doing what the group wants. So how do you find the group? Check recent visitor comments for the current teen scene.
Beaches Boscobel has rooms and suites; some suites sleep five. Note that family "suites" have a half-wall, not a full partition. Our terrace "suite" was one large room, with king-sized bed and sofa bed: attractive and roomy, with large patio area outside. All units have fridges. Many units connect if you want two rooms.
Beaches Boscobel: Restaurants
The poolside Bayside Restaurant was a roomy open-air place with buffet fare perked up by occasional local dishes and lots of cheese and fruit. Kids have their own section and kiddie seats. We sampled the very nice Venetian restaurant; other guests praised the tex-mex Arizona,perched above the beach. The BBQ by the kiddies' pool served good barbeque, quick.
Many guests book tours off-property, such as a Jeep Safari, river rafting, river tubing, Blue Mountain Bicycle tour. Shopping outings are offered too, though some guests simply take a cab to Ocho Rios.
Those who want to know more about Jamaica can also try Meet the People, a free program of the Jamaica Tourist Board. Sign up well in advance, and JTB will match you with a family with kids a similar age to yours; you'll be picked up at your resort, taken for a visit or hosted for a meal... We thoroughly enjoyed our Meet the People experience!
Beaches - Single Parents
Beaches has declared May, Sept. and October "Single Parents months": solo parents won't be charged the "single supplement" that raises the price of a room to what a couple would pay, and special eventscreate a friendly ambiance.
Three points stood out from our visit:
- kids and parents loved the kids programs, and evening sessions gave parents the chance to try the grown-up restaurants
- 8 to 10 yr-olds had a terrific time, making friends in the kids' programs, and then running all over with new pals
- Single Parents week worked very well
Find out more about Beaches Boscobel:
- Read more about Beaches Resorts
- Check visitors' comments at TripAdvisor.com
- Check prices at Kayak.com
As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary accommodation for the purpose of review. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy.
*Always check destination websites for updates!