Establishment neighborhood
Strawberry Hill
New Castle Rd., Kingston
This is another Chris Blackwell property (the other is GoldenEye), and as the founder of Island Records, Blackwell keeps the walls of these white wooden cottages lined with an array of historic rock-and-roll memorabilia. (This is the place Bob Marley chose as an escape when he faced threats to his life in the mid-1970s.) It feels like a secluded mountain village tucked high in the contours of Jamaica’s Blue Mountain Range, over 3,000 feet above sea level. The nineteenth-century Georgian architecture has a sophisticated, laid-back charm, matched by hand-dyed batik linens and four-poster beds with billowing drapes. And it’s almost a magical experience to stroll through the morning mist in the private gardens before breakfast. The hikes (led by expert staff members) give you a real sense of what the interior of the island is all about; afterward, unwind with an aloe wrap at the spa. But our favorite thing to do was to take in the views—every last heart-stopping one of them.
Jamaica Inn
Ocho Rios
The resort is known for having the same feel now as it did when it opened (when Sir Winston Churchill used to come here to paint). Colonial-style cottages offset the tropical beachside setting that has a bit of a retro Jamaican feel—and there's croquet on the lawn. Blessedly, there are no TVs to be found. The rooms are as on the beach as it gets (open the door and step in sand) and they are happy to bring you breakfast on your veranda if you don’t feel like making it over to the palm-covered dining room.
Fair Prospect to Folly Rd., Anchovy Gardens, Port Antonio
You can be as private or social as you like at this resort, which feels like a village of waterfront villas. Most people spend the day lounging by the infinity pool overlooking the sea, but you can relax by the private pool in your villa for a more secluded experience. The rooms are newly refurbished, simple, and modern, keeping the gorgeous setting the focus, with features like outdoor soaking tubs and sun decks. The town of Port Antonio, where the resort is located, was a hotspot in the 60’s and part of the experience is checking out the restaurants, bars, and live music in town. Fun feature: If you get tired of the beach, there’s a screening room that you can reserve.
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