Ivan’s At Catcha Falling Star: A Must For Dinner & Sunset In Negril, Jamaica
It’s hard to beat a delicious dinner paired with a stunning ocean sunset. And that’s exactly what you’ll get at Ivan’s restaurant, located at Jamaica’s Catcha Falling Star resort. If you’re planning a trip to Negril, you definitely need to consider a sunset dinner at Ivan’s.
Sip a cocktail while listening to the soothing crash of waves against Negril’s famous west-end limestone cliffs. Enjoy the shifting golds and pinks over the sparkling water as you devour your meal, and the duskier purples and twinkling stars that slide in as you contemplate dessert.
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Is Ivan’s one of the best restaurants in Negril?
Absolutely! I haven’t been *everywhere* yet but I’d say that Ivan’s is in the top 10 (and maybe top 5) best restaurants in Negril when it comes to more of the fine dining category. Many locals come here for special occasion meals as well, as the menu celebrates the Jamaican cuisine while incorporating international elements.
You can check out their menu here and read lots of reviews for Ivan’s on TripAdvisor. When you combine the delicious food with the amazing outdoor setting and sunset views, you have a “must do” meal experience in Negril. The reviews for Catcha Falling Star also give you a good idea of what to expect at Ivan’s, so I recommend checking them out as well.
My understanding is that the resort has made some improvements and upgrades during COVID and that they also have recently hired a new chef. I haven’t experienced breakfast or lunch here like people who stay at Catcha Falling Star, but the reviews are very good.
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Where should you stay in Negril?
If you’re trying to figure out where to stay in Negril, you also should check out Catcha Falling Star, where Ivan’s is located (see reviews on Booking.com and TripAdvisor), Rockhouse (see reviews on TripAdvisor; in the top 50 Caribbean hotels), and Tensing Pen (see reviews on Booking.com and TripAdvisor).
I’ve stayed twice at Tensing Pen, and you can read a detailed review here. It’s right next door to Catcha Falling Star, so both resorts’ restaurants are easy walking from each other. Either way I do strongly prefer to stay on the cliffs in Negril rather than on the beach. The cliffs are just so unique…you can find beautiful beaches anywhere.
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Where is the best sunset in Negril?
For my money, Ivan’s has a *slight* edge over Tensing Pen (#2) and Rockhouse (#3). Of course, the famous Seven Mile Beach also has beautiful sunsets, but like I said above I think the west-facing cliffs offer the best sunsets in Negril—no question.
Here are a few pics to whet your appetite, but make sure you scroll to the end to see how the sunset develops and deepens over the water!
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The experience at Ivan’s restaurant & bar
Okay, let’s dive into what to expect at the Catcha Falling Star restaurant. You’re welcomed to Ivan’s through the front gate, then you wander through a charming little kind of garden paths covered by pergola arches and lush flowers and plants.
Hang a right at the buddha statue to end up at Ivan’s, where the patio opens up to the beautiful ocean view.
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For both of my dinner reservations I arrived early so I could enjoy a cocktail and wander around a bit. Ivan’s has a pretty lengthy drink menu, though there wasn’t a ton on there that I’m as inclined to drink for a nice dinner. I think I started with a lychee martini this time.
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It’s hard to describe the patio area at Catcha Falling Star, though the photos below kind of give you an idea. It’s this kind of insane combination of multi-tier terraces, whimsical little details, bridges, arches, and more.
To me, in daylight it’s a bit much, feels a bit Disney resort, but it’s lovely regardless and around sunset it’s really beautiful.
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A sunset dinner at Ivan’s
On my first visit I was seated on the main patio level, right along the railing. On my second visit they had set up the most adorable one-person table on one of the side patios. I ordered a second cocktail and settled in to watch the sun start to sink (note, they no longer use plastic straws).
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The food at Ivan’s
I mean, that’s a big part of why we’re here, right?? They have a big enough menu to offer some variety if you’re eating here multiple times (especially if you’re staying at Catcha Falling Star). That was my main complaint at Tensing Pen, which has great food but a very limited menu if you’re staying for a few days.
After I placed my order (and let them know about my religious dietary restrictions), they brought out a little amuse bouche starter. I think both times it was a kind of vegetarian pumpkin curry soup but am not sure. It’s yummy and wasn’t *too* spicy for me either (I’m a baby).
Both times I had dinner at Ivan’s restaurant I started with the fish cakes, which are delicious and I definitely recommend.
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The first time I visited, I had mango fish (mahi mahi I think) and it was good. The second time, my waitress recommended the Ahoy Papaya!, a snapper that’s served in a half papaya skin. It is BOMB. It has the most addictive, delicious papaya sauce…I wanted to lick the plate. You have to get it!
Their dessert menu didn’t have anything that really appealed to me (fairly straightforward things like cheesecake and chocolate cake), so both times I passed on dessert and had more cocktails back at my resort. That was pretty much the case throughout Jamaica, I didn’t find much in the way of good or interesting desserts.
Oh wait, let’s get back to that sunset, shall we??
Like I said above, I think Ivan’s at Catcha Falling Star may have the best sunset in Negril but *just* a hair. If you’re lucky, you’ll get a few puffy clouds around sunset time, which really amps up the colors and the view.
I loved watching the oranges deepen to golds and peaches, to fuschias and pearly pinks, and finally dusky purples. And seeing how they reflect off the waves is magical!
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I love how the color deepens into twilight, and the little twinkle lights all over the patio come on. As it gets dark, scan the horizon for the blinking lights of passing boats and enjoy the moon reflecting off the dark water.
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Have I convinced you to have dinner at Ivan’s?? If you’re staying in Negril I definitely think it should be on your list!
How do you book a meal at Ivan’s restaurant?
If you’re staying in a resort in Negril, your resort’s front desk or concierge should be able to call over to Ivan’s and book your table the day of or a day before. I haven’t had trouble finding a table at the last minute, but I’m just one person so a larger group may want to book further out. You can also call or email them.
Does Ivan’s at Catcha Falling Star offer any special dining experiences?
Yes, they have multiple offerings, including helping with proposals and something called the Night of 100 Candles. They only do this one some nights of the week, so you definitely want to coordinate that and check availability ahead of time. You can email them at catchafallingstar2 (at) gmail (dot) com.
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