Samsara Resort Hotel

, Negril, Jamaica
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Samsara Resort Hotel

, Negril
West End Road - Negril - Jamaica 876-957-4395
450 Traveller

Reviews - Samsara Resort Hotel

Submitted by: Altavia in 14/11/06
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: United States
  • Traveller type: Young Couple
What can I say about Negril Jamaica…. Well, we had a ball! I would go again in a flash. The people were nice and the hagglers weren't that bad. We rented scooters from Gas Bike Rentals. You will see his sign in our pictures. This made transportation great. We went everywhere on westend road up to Norman manley road. Walking is fine if you have the time. We were anxious to get out so the scooters were great. The staff at Samsara were very nice. I took small gifts for the housekeeping staff. They take your towels in the am and return them in the early afternoon. The daily tips help ensure the early return of your towels. J's jerk hut is to your right when you walk out of Samsara and it's about ¼ mile down the road on your left. She is a bit slow but it's worth the wait. No one in Jamaica hurries. To your left when you walk out of Samsara there is the M and L grocery store, Right out side past the grocery store is Irie chicken. The best Jerk chicken I ate in Negril. He doesn't have a restaurant, just a barbecue pit on the side of the road. Kool Brown is a very cute spot to get souvenirs. The restaurant is just above the store. Further down is Gas bike rentals. The owner Gus is real cool the scooters rented for 35 dollars a day but we got them for 6 days and paid 30 dollars a day. You have to leave a credit card deposit but you get the slip when you return. With no charge unless you want to charge the rental cost to your card. We found that buying trinkets, it's easier to use Jamaican money. It's easier to use Jamaican money at eating places and grocery stores. At the bigger shops American money is fine because the prices will be listed in US dollars. Mayfield falls is a very beautiful place. It takes about an hour and a half to get to it but we had a great adventure. Ask the receptionist at the front desk if you want to have a personal driver to take you to the falls. He was so cool. We got to experience the country side with our own private driver. He let us drink and smoke in his van. That was the coolest. If you want to go on a glass bottom boat ride go to Legends (samsara's sister hotel) next door on the beach you will see the boats just ask the security guard how to get on the boat. I think the ride was 20 us dollars each. We went 21/2 miles off shore. Happy hour at Samsara is very refreshing. You get to sit at the outside bar and have a ball. The a la carte item were reasonable 6-10 US dollars. I had the chicken wings and they were delightful. We went All-inclusive.

Historical Traveller Reviews of Samsara Resort Hotel

Never again

from A TripAdvisor Member
Geeze, where do I begin? Well, we found Samsara on expedia, and were VERY excited about our Sept. trip. Let me just say - dont belive the pictures, that are a complete misrepresentation of that dump. So, anyways, we get there and the girl at the front desk tells everyone that they have to put down a 100 dollar deposit. (Thats was not mentioned on the web site). So, already aggrevated, we make our way to the room. When we entered, I swear I wanted to cry. It looked and smelled about a hundred years old. First off, there were two CONCRETE blocks with thin mattresses on top of them for our beds, the bathroom made me want to throw up. I had to wear my new flip flops in the shower, and I was afraid to touch the walls or the soap dish because it was so cruddy, and brushing my teeth was especially disguisting because of all of the grime and cracks on the sink. (YUCK), but heres the best part - we opted for the all inclusive no a/c package, and figured if we got too hot we would just open the window, or turn on the ceiling fan (seems reasonable, right?) LOL, well the fan (oh my gosh), we jerry-rigged to stay connected to the ceiling by a 2x4, and we couldnt turn it up any higher that low, for fear it would fall on our heads. And as for opening up a window - well, there was no screen, and plenty of mosquitos. Now onto the food/service - BAD BAD BAD - the bartenders were not bartenders at all, they were regular staff, so they couldnt make a good drink if their life depended on it, I ordered a mudslide, and I got something that looked like milk with ice - it was horrible...and on top of that...they were RUDE. All of the satff was rude, front desk, wait staff, bus boys, all of them. And the food was terrible. The buffets were always cold, the breakfast was really the worst (cold eggs, dried up fruit, hard as a rock bread,etc). And for us to have paid for the all inclusive, we couldnt order lunch off of the menu when we missed lunch (12-1pm). I told the waitress that we would pay for it, and she still acted like we couldnt order it. So, after arguing with her for about 10 minutes, she finally lets us order, a pizza (personal size) and a burger, she stomps off and puts our order in. FORTY FIVE minutes later we got our cold food. The only thing I looked forward to while in Jamaica was leaving. Samsara was HORRIBLE - next time I'm going to Mexico. I would HIGHLY recommend not going to Samsara - it is not worth it.

12 years going here

from A TripAdvisor Member
There are two types of travelers: 1) The kind that needs pamperingy to a fault (IMHO) and 2) the kind that looks for real ambience, culture, and relaxation that does not require some of the luxuries some people seem to require.

If you are the former, I suggest you go to the beach, and stay in some Sandals like all inclusive resort. You never need to leave, and can get alll the emenities you expect at home (wherever that is). Also, Negril as a whole, may be a bit to avant garde for you in the first place.
This is not Paris. That'a a good thing.

If you are adventurous (well, only slightly adventurous is needed here), Samsara is terrific. I had been going to SamSara for 12 years, until 2000, and meeting friends from around the world. I am finally getting back there next week. The negative reviews I see here are funny. I always remember the type 1 people, and we felt bad for them, but couldn't help laughng. They just didn't get it. It's a "little" rustic but the place is BEUATIFUL! Samsara, and the surrounding area of the cliffs, is not for everyone, but if you are type 2, it is one of the great areas of the world to hang out in and experiece some of the real culture Jamaica has to offer.

I saw a former reviewer that had issues because the bathroom didn't have a port for her hairdryer. Ha Ha... Go to Aruba and maybe pamper yourself there in an all inclusive.


from A TripAdvisor Member
We just returned and i had read the reviews and unfortunately discounted the bad ones as written by negative people. The truth is the hotel is very primative. It reminded me of a southern California place that you rent by the week. Some specifics: first the bathrooms are very late 40's, basic sink, small shower and toilet with a bare bulb for a light. The room has very poor quality furnishings, uncomfortable beds and exterior doors that barely close. The TV got basic channels and had poor reception. The meals were good, unimaginative and cafeteria style.
The dining room was clean with a view. The pool is small, the jacuzzi not hot. There was no entertainment. Now the positives: the staff was very nice, the views are great, you can dive off the cliffs and pretend you are at Ricks. There are alot of good small restaurants on the street nearby. I would not recommend Samsara.

A tropical paradise

from A TripAdvisor Member
After reading the many negative reviews, I was a bit concerned. Once we arrived at the hotel I was pleasantly surprised. The gardens were beautiful, nestled between the foliage were small cottages, and the pillar houses. We stayed in T4 which is the best of the bunch. I thought the room was quite comfortable and clean. It wasn't the Ritz, but I didn't pay for the Ritz. The room was quaint and cozy. The bathroom was quite unique. I now know where they get the term "throne".
The toilet was elevated, and my feet barely touched the floor. The outdoor shower was a blast, and I loved it. The location of the hotel is stunning. The staff were all friendly, with the exception of the road guard, and he was a little anal with his duties. The front desk staff were always helpful. The only complaints that I have are: The free snorkeling equipment was never available and washcloths seemed to be in short supply and high demand. The only other complaint was the public restroom near the bar always only had toilet paper in one of the four stalls. I was overall pleased with the hotel for the price, but small things could have been done to improve the overall appearance of the hotel, ie. painting the walls around the pool, fixing the water slide, lighting the walkway to the pillar houses, because of the danger of a pina collada induced cliff dive. I would definately stay here again, but would go all inclusive.

Excellent value

from DRSouthern
While Samsara is hardly a luxury hotel is it very good value. It has well-kept, spacious grounds with lovely terraced patio's looking over the ocean. Our standard room was very clean and had a really nice view.
Staff were all very friendly and helpful. The resort has a slightly run-down tennis court, pool table, ping-pong etc.

It's well located on the west side - there's good local restaurants nearby and, if one is feeling energetic, it's a 20 minute walk to the beach or the lighthouse. We ate one meal there - it was ok; I don't think I'd go for the all-inclusive plan.

In summary, my wife and I really enjoyed our stay and would certainly stay at Samsara again!

t believe the website!!!!!!

from A TripAdvisor Member
We just got back from our vacation to Jamaica, and had the unfortunate experience of staying at both Samsara and Legends Motels (a hotel is too nice of a word for these places). I will just talk about Samsara in this review, but please check out my Legends review, as it gets even better. We were not even supposed to stay at Samsara, but when we arrived at Legends, there were no rooms available, so they shipped us off to their sister motel, Samsara. Check-in was fairly easy, and we were given 2 free meals for our troubles. Yeah, like that was really supposed to make up for it, their food was absolutely horrible. When we arrive at our room, I have to admit, I was scared. The ceiling fan was wobbling and looked as if it would fall at any second. We could not open our window because there were no screens on them and the mosquitos were thick. (I came back with about 30-40 bites on each leg). The beds were slabs of concrete with matresses on top. Our lamps had those annoying flourescent bulbs in them, and when I went to unplug one of them, the entire outlet came out of the wall. The reason I unplugged it was so that I could blow-dry my hair, the bathroom had no outlets. Ah yes, the bathroom, the lovely bathroom. The shower had no tub, and looked like the kind of shower you would find at a campground. It was dirty, we didn't get washcloths or handtowels. The shower head squirted in every direction. The sink was simply that, no vanity, nothing. We woke the next morning with aching backs, (and I'm not old either, only 25). We then ventured out to view the cliffs, which were quite beautiful and the water was so clear. But then decided we were hungry.
They were having a buffet, so we decided to give it a shot. Everything tasted awful, even the mini boxes of cereal were stale tasting. And for being a country that's famous for coffee, they sure as hell don't know how to brew it! Well, I guess the pineapples and bananas were ok..can't go wrong there. When we went to the fron desk to find out when we could go back to Legends, they said our room wasn't ready was noon.
We really wanted to get the heck out of that place and see if Legends was any better, but since we couldn't, we decided to go shopping. When we were waiting for a taxi, the owner approached us and asked why we were in such a hurry to leave and insisted that we stay and have a few drinks at the bar. He said if we were staying until thursday, we'd have plenty of time to shop. What a piece of work this guy was!! He was so pushy and kept trying to get us to stay there instead of doing what we wanted to do. I'll just end this by saying, don't waste your time or money on this poor excuse for a "hotel". You'll definitely regret it!

Peaceful, No Frills, Non-Touristy Getaway

from A TripAdvisor Member
For the most part we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Samsara hotel. I would advise anyone going to select an air conditioned room vs. the Pillar houses as they only have ceiling fans and it was quite humid some days. Samsara itself is secluded and felt a lot more intimate and romantic then its sister hotel, Legends. This was a huge benefit because we stayed during the weekend of a holiday (Oct 16-20) and I can only imagine how loud the music actually was on the beach side because we could still hear it from where we were (though it was much more quiet). Samsara offers a free shuttle to Legends though the only downside is the shuttle leaves at 10am and returns at 4pm - there are no inbetween roundtrips. If you miss the shuttle you are not left stranded - the cabs run from $3-$5 for a local drive.

I must agree with the last review in that Samsara is a place you can only enjoy if you are not looking for the over-touristy type of resort.
Our room was decent, no frills, the bathroom was clean though the bare minimum (our sink stood on two wooden polls). However, the room was neat and the balcony overlooked the sunrise as well as the scenic cliffs and coconut trees. At night, it is wonderful to lie out on the patio and enjoy the starlit skies. We decided not to go for all-inclusive, as drinks were not as expensive as they are in NYC where we are from. There is cable TV, which also served as a plus since my boyfriend wanted to watch the Yankees and Marlins play their last few games. The staff was friendly and overall we had a great time!

quaint, quiet and cozy

from A TripAdvisor Member
You have to go with the flow, get in tune with the rythmn of the place to enjoy it. Our front door stuck, the bathroom counter tilted, and it was a wee bit dilapidated all around. But, it was cozy and comfortable.
We had a tv, great view and a wonderful time.

Staff was friendly and helpful in arranging day trips. They carried our bags to our room --- we were surprised to be taken to one of the elevated cabanas. We were surprised again to find the shower outside, below our hut. But we were showering al fresco in no time, chuckling and making the most of it. Hey --- it had good pressure and plenty of hot water; what more can you ask?!

Sunsets were fabulous: a gathering for guests. Swimming was fun, snorkeling not so good. The concrete sun deck was not the most attractive, but ... We caught the shuttle to the beach property, and found it so crowded, we prefered to be at Samsara, which was always quiet and cozy, except in the evenings, when the bar blasted its music.

Rick's was within walking distance, as were other places to eat. And taxis were everywhere, reasonable and anxious for business.

It's a different mindset, but if you accept, you enjoy. We still chuckle over some things, but we wouldn't have traded it for a stylized, Americanized resort for anything!

total relaxation

from Nicegrrl
I am so glad we booked this resort over one on the beach! It was very secluded and peaceful, whereas on the crowded narrow beaches (all public) there are locals up and down the beach constantly trying to sell you something, usually pot.

How interesting that we were at this resort at almost the same time as the last reviewer. (Sept 5-12) We also had booked the room with no air-conditioning - which was not a secret when we booked it. It was across the street from the main resort, and was not a great room - there were 2 giant flying cockroaches because the window screens were in poor condition. YUCK! But this area us jungle-y and rustic - we knew we weren't booking the Hilton. We also asked about paying the $12/day for an air-conditioned room, and did have to wait until the next day, but that was due to our poor planning, not the resort's.

The air conditioned room was fabulous. We overlooked the ocean and the pool, and the room was clean and decent. We lounged endlessly by the cliffs, dipping into the pool when it got too hot, drinking pina coladas and banana daquiris. The food the first night was not great, but every other meal was pretty decent. There is usually an American dish and native one, buffet style. There was red snapper and jerk chicken several times during the week.

I thought I would be bored taking a vacation lilke this, but I haven't been so relaxed in years. This is not a party place, nor should it be.
It was wonderful, and I will go back again.

Samsara Surprize!

from A TripAdvisor Member
Just returned home from 7 days in Negril via Apple Vacations.

We arrived at Samsara in a thunderous rainstorm and dripping wet we were escorted to our room which had no A/C, no windows - only louvers with no screens, a bed and a cot. The room was less that 50 feet from the back gate, which was unlocked and open when we arrived.

We asked for an upgrade and were told we would have to wait until the next day. We went down the road a peice and found a better room at another hotel.

Samsara is in a beautiful location, it boasts a large pool and jacuzzi.
There is amble room to sunbathe and being right on the ocean, you can literakky dive right in. We had a $50 drink and food credit so we ate at the reastaurant/bar several times. The staff is friendly if you are polite and kind but generally they are remote and aloof. They behaved in this manner with everyone, equally. Americans, Italians, Germans, it did not appear to matter.

The food at Samasar is terrible, but then it's pretty bad all up and down the West End Road. Everyone raves about this place and that place but just about every place is terrible compared to a meal in just about any American restaurant.

However, our taxi driver (Clive has a plush bus and a no nonsense attitude his cell is 1-876-909-1873) took us to a place called Sweet Spice which is on the road to Savannah La Mar (not on the beach or the cliffs). Sweet Spice is not often frequented by tourists and does not serve alcohol. Its menu consists of typical Jamaican dishes and though it has a very nice dining area, the business is mostly takeout (Sweet Spice does not deliver). This means that the service is faster than average.

At Samsara the key description is that you get what you pay for. It IS quiet... The bar closes at ten and there's not mush going on after that unless you have a private party in your room.

Top Local Tips for Negril

Use the grocery store Buy Jamaican coffee and rum in the grocery store in Negril for the best price!

Rick's Cafe If you are ever in Negril go visit Rick's Cafe.... it is just breathtaking. The sunset view from the dining area upstairs, is worth going to Negril. The cliff that you can dive from into beautiful turqoise water is amazing.

Jamaicans Get to know some Jamaicans - they're some great people. If you show them a little respect -- you'll get it back 10 times over!!!!


Other names for Samsara Resort Hotel

  • samsara hotel jamaica
  • samsara hotel
  • samsara cliffs negril
  • samsara cliffs hotel
  • samsara cliff resort
  • hotel samsara
  • Address: West End Road - Negril - Jamaica
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