I’m typically a solo traveler but when my grandparents mentioned leaving cold, wintery New York behind for a tropical getaway in the Caribbean, I couldn’t say, “SIGN ME UP” fast enough. One of my younger cousins, Alicia, was also in for the getaway so we had our friends over at Tom Flies do some research on what island would be hot in January, boast an all-inclusive resort and direct flights from JFK.
We had an early morning JetBlue flight from JFK to Montego Bay, Jamaica followed by a 35-minute car ride that placed us at Melia Braco Village in Rio Bueno, Trelawny, Jamaica. Since we arrived before noon we weren’t expecting our rooms to be ready but in the interim we were given a private, golf cart tour around the property – showing us both sides of the resort (Melia + The Level) as well as where all the dining options were, and where the list of daily activities and entertainment was.
We were then escorted to The Level reception area. The Level is a VIP branch of the Melia brand and at Melia Braco Village it is home to two buildings of two-room suites, its own private beach and pool (accessible to only guests of The Level) as well as a slew of awesome options including a pillow menu, light bites available throughout the day, our own private concierge, and the best part – all guests at The Level have oceanfront views from private balconies.
The Level reception area was more like its own small restaurant.
A few of the small bites available until midnight at the Level reception area.
I mean, if you have-to wait to check into your room, could these views be any more beautiful?
After having our passports scanned by reception we were served coffee and small snacks and only had about a 15-20 minute wait before we were escorted to our suites. Alicia and I shared a suite and my grandparents had their own suite and during the room tour we were THRILLED to find out our suite had TWO FULL-SIZE bathrooms!
I don’t know if you know anything about young women who travel, but, we tend to have a lot of bathroom products and not having to worry about “who’s side of the counter” we were on was such a pleasure. This also was extremely convenient for ‘getting-ready’ purposes. Post-beach and pre-dinner, we both needed to shower, get our hair and makeup together and it was nice to be able to do this in our own space without having to figure out bathroom time schedules.
The living and dining room area of our suite.
The interior view overlooking the balcony from the living area of our suite.
Our room came equipped with a TON of amenities. On top of the fastest, most reliable wi-fi signal I’ve ever signed on to in any hotel, the room had top-of-the-line soaps, body wash, shampoo and conditioner, plush robes and slippers, an iron and ironing board (so rare in hotel and resorts nowadays!) a fully stocked (and all-inclusive) mini-bar, 24/7 (also, all-inclusive) room service, hair dryers and a TON of bed side outlets, perfect for someone who has to work on the go and will typically find herself in bed, working (and needing to charge), at night. One special treat that guests at The Level are treated to is a “daily amenity”, one day it was a fruit platter, another it was a gourmet cheese plate and one of my favorites was white chocolate covered green apples (yum!).
Our HUGE king size bed with the complimentary LEVEL beach-bag waiting for us (bonus: we got to take the beach bag home!)
The palm tree views and hues out of the window opposite the bed in our bedroom.
The fruit platter that was one of our daily amenities.
If you look closely you can see Alicia and I on our balcony on the second-floor corner suite!
The property itself, as well as the staff, was impeccable. I don’t think there was a single Melia employee that wasn’t smiling ear-to-ear and the amount of security, servers, as well as maintenance workers was astounding. There wasn’t a square inch of the (huge) property that wasn’t perfectly manicured and taken care of.
Some of the tropical flora around the pool at The Level.
What was even more impressive was the ability of the employees to remember all of the guests’ names! I sat at the swim-up bar at the pool and the bartender, Alex, asked Alicia and me for our names and he remembered everytime he saw us for the remainder of the week! He also introduced us to a couple traveling from Alberta, Canada and had no issue remembering their names (the way I’m at a loss in memory now, LOL). The same for Ricardo, the young man who served our coffee upon check-in, we bumped into him five days later and he remembered us both by name!
An aerial view of The Level’s private beach area.
Some of the tropical flora near The Level’s HUGE hot tub.
There is also always something to do at Melia Braco Village. Besides lounging on the beach or enjoying the swim up bar in both of the pools there also have daily entertainment (fun games such as dominos and life-size connect-four), a full service spa (for additional fees), and even a cart with an attendant who can help to acquire fresh sugar cane, pineapple, or coconut water (served right in the coconut shell)!
Marlon, the coconut man!
Fresh, chilled, coconut water – straight from the source!
Dining at Melia Braco Village is not only all-inclusive but also all-delicious. There were multiple restaurants to choose from including two buffet options Golden Sands (which is exlcusive for The Level guests) with international selections, The Market Place which serves international selections for all guests for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
There are also the casual options O’Grille which is outdoor, beachfront dining serving Jamaican/Caribbean options and Rasta Pasta which serves Italian cuisine, some options with a local twist!
Passion-fruit panna cotta from Rasta Pasta.
BBQ Chicken ‘lollypops’ from O’Grille.
For more upscale dining options there is Nikkei, an Asian and Peruvian fusion restaurant which has Teppanyaki (“hibachi style”) dining options (with a reservation) as well as 876 Prime – a more contemporary option serving traditional steakhouse options. As I mentioned earlier, there is also 24/7 room service included with the all-inclusive package (an option I took advantage of during my stay!).
Octopus ceviche up front and sushi rolls behind it, from Nikkei.
Egg omelet with bacon and hash-browns served on my balcony.
All in all my stay at Melia Braco Village couldn’t have been any more perfect. From the moment we arrived until the moment we had to (unfortunately) leave, we received Class-A, top-of-the-line service. No matter which restaurant we dined at, the servers were all attentive – my glass of water was always re-filled, before I even needed to ask for more. At the beach or pool area I was often asked if I needed anything or if there was anything someone could get me and no matter where we walked around the property – security was always there.
This was my second Melia experience (my first being four years ago in Bali) and I couldn’t be any happier with my stay – the fact that the property is all-inclusive drastically adds to the value of this vacation!
*Disclaimer: I was hosted at THE LEVEL as a guest, my opinions, however, remain my own.