THE LAND OF BLESSED GOLD
I BY NELSON CHRISTIAN STOKES
THE SEARCH FOR GOLD
When Christopher Columbus set sail on his second voyage from Cadiz on September 24, 1493 the crews of
his ships had one thing above all else on their minds; to find Cathay, the land of gold. Prowling along the
south coast of Cuba, hoping that this was in fact Cathay, the crew became angry and disappointed that there
was no gold to be found. Then, Columbus received word from the natives living in Cuba of an island to the
south 'the land of blessed gold' Xaymaca. The explorer immediately set sail for this island believing that
if it were not Cathay, it had to be close to the land of gold. It turned out that there was no gold in Xaymaca,
and that the word actually meant 'land of wood and water', hardly sources of the great wealth expected by
King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. By the 19th century, Cathay was known as China; by the time the British
captured Xaymaca from the Spanish, it was known as Jamaica, and by 2008; Jamaican athletes found a
wealth of gold in China.
Jamaica finished the Games of the XXIX Olympiad with a record eleven medals, which could easily have been
twelve if the promised gold in the women's 4 x 100 meter event finals had not melted away in a bungled
exchange. When the dust settled, Jamaica had racked up six gold, three silver and two bronze medals. The
tally surpassed Jamaica's previous best of seven medals won in the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney and our
best gold medal haul of two won at the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki.
Of the 204 nations participating at the Beijing Olympics, Jamaica finished 13th overall and 3rd in track and field.
Consider the specific medal achievements. In the women's 100 meter final, Jamaica had an unprecedented
sweep of the event with Shelly-Ann Fraser winning in 10.78 seconds and team-mates Kerron Stewart and
Sherone Simpson tying for silver, unable to be separated on the photo finish. The women's 200 meters was
won by the reliable and beloved Veronica Campbell-Brown, the first woman to defend her Olympic title in a
personal best time of 21.74 seconds. In the same race, Kerron Stewart finished third in a personal best time
of 21.99 seconds, adding the bronze to the silver already won in the 100 meters. In the last 100 meters of
the women's 400 meter event, Shericka Williams stunned the crowds with a final sprint which landed her the
silver medal in a personal best time of 49.69 seconds. The women returned in the 4 x 400 meter relay event
to win a hard fought bronze medal.
The world record breaking relay team celebrates after their historic win.
From left: Usain Bolt, Michael Frater, Asafa Powel and Nesta Carter
a (Photo: Routers)
While the stadium still buzzed from the exploits of a young superstar in the 200 meter race, Melaine Walker
won the women's 400 meters hurdles and set a new Olympic record of 52.64, joining compatriot Deon
Hemmings, Jamaica's first female gold medallist who won the event at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. But who
was this young superstar that the crowds could not get their fill of?
Of the 10,708 athletes from 204 countries competing in the
Beijing Games, including the phenomenal Michael Phelps of
the U.S.A., one man stood above all; Usain Bolt of Sherwood
Content, Trelawny, Jamaica.
Overcoming a series of demoralizing injuries and a
disappointing exit from the 200 meter event in Athens in
2004 for which the world junior champion and world record
holder was mercilessly criticized, Usain Bolt did what had
never been done before. Usain Bolt after breaking the 200m world record
On August 16, Bolt demolished a field of the best sprinters in the world, including friend and former world record
holder Asafa Powell, cruising to victory in the 100 meters. The sprinter lowered his own world record from 9.72
seconds to 9.69 seconds, despite dropping his arms and celebrating 20 meters before the finish line.
This win and the world record could have been predicted by Bolt's optimistic fans, but next was the 200
meters. After seven races and facing Michael Johnson's formidable world record of 19.32 seconds set in
Atlanta in 1996, reasonable people could expect the gold, but not a world record. This is the stage on which
greatness plays out. Vowing to 'leave everything on the track', Usain took off in the 200 meter final, a man on
a mission. Coming into a headwind of 0.9 meters per second on the straight, there was no celebrating, no
easing up as in the 100 meter race. Bolt worked, and worked hard for 201 meters, bowing to cross the line,
even though he was 15 meters in the lead, before he looked at the finish time; 19.31 seconds. A moment
later, the time was revised down to 19.30 seconds, a new world record.
We were watching history. Both Jesse Owens and Carl Lewis
had won the 100 meters and 200 meters in a single Olympic
Games, but neither had set a world record in the process for
any of the events, let alone both. The greatest performer in
Olympic history was dancing right before our eyes, affecting
the world with his effusive personality. As if history had not
had her fill, Usain returned with Nesta Carter, Michael Frater
and Asafa Powell in the men's 4 x 100 meter relay event to
take the gold and the world record in a time of 37.10 seconds.
The historic all Jamaican medal ceremony with Kerron The relay was particularly gratifying for Jamaicans since it
Stewart, Shelly-Ann Fraser and Sherone Simpson
(from left) (Photo: Ruters) saw our beloved Asafa Powell win a gold medal despite the
disappointments in major championships over the years. Usain had won three medals and set three world
records and we, in our lifetime, got to see it live.
WHAT IT MEANS
Long before Abe Issa pioneered Jamaica's tourism product, before Sandals, and Beaches and Rick's Cafe
and Jake's; long before Bob Marley, Dennis Brown, Shabba Ranks, Beenie Man, Buju Banton and
Shaggy; long before Jamaican Michael Lee Chin made the Forbes list of the world's billionaires, Jodi-
Ann Maxwell won the Scripps Howard spelling bee for Jamaica, and Lisa Hanna won Miss World, the
single thing that gave Jamaica its sense of nationhood, of independence, of impact, meaning and
pride of place in the world, was track and field. Being referred to as the Jewel in Britain's crown in the
18th century because of our prolific sugar production was a matter of pride for the island's British
expatriates, as the achievement of West Indian cricketers in England in the 1950's was a matter of
pride for the West Indies. From 1948 until now, our greatness in track and field is our own
and hence, it has a special place in the psyche of the Jamaican. It is what bonds father
to son, one generation to the next, what cements school loyalty and magnifies national
pride. So it is no wonder that the world marvelled, not only at our performance on the
track in Beijing, but our celebration around the world.
Like an Anniversary, Christmas or a Christening, the Olympics are not something to be
celebrated alone. All around the world, from London to Lima, from Kingston to Cape Town,
wherever two or three Jamaicans live, we got together in our homes, in our workplaces and
on the streets to watch our sons and daughters take on the world. Not abstract, distant
characters, but Shelly-Ann Fraser from Waterhouse, whom we might well have overlooked
as a schoolgirl sprinter, Usain Bolt from that hotbed parish of talent, Trelawny, and so on.
SThey were up there, but they were from here and we cheered as if our voices carried
JAMAICA TOURIST 2
through space into the ears of our
champions and gave them strength. Half-
Way-Tree in Kingston was blocked off
to allow us to watch the events on
a big screen as was Trafalgar
Square in London, painted
Gold for the week.
Everywhere at home and
through our great Diaspora
our cars were adorned
with flags, our bodies
with the national colours
and our spirits bursting at
the seams. We were all of
us Jamaicans; we were all
of us proud; we were all of us
champions. For a time, we were
not defined by BBC or CNN or
anyone else putting up images
and stories about which we were not
so proud. For a time, as the world
watched, we defined ourselves as a
talented, blessed, ambitious and successful
people. For a time, we hurdled with Melaine,
flew with Shelly-Ann, dug deep with
Shericka and danced with Usain and
dreamed among ourselves of the day when
our blessed island nation will live out ts
fullest potential on the world stage as
our athletes did in Beijing.
For more about Chris Stokes and to comma
on this article visit coolrunningslive.com
'Golden Girl' Veronica Campbell-
Brown (Photo: Reuters)
mm l l
Black River a 10 4 49 944 155 I
Fllmoull 2 11 23 75 44 110 3
Kigstln W 11 111 153 i 4 61 51
Mandeilmle u 53 61 71 1 72 2 117 6
Mgotego By 41 23 111 70 52 17 133 0
Negril 4a 735 13 2 52 117 111 110
Oncho Ries 44 54 72 67 117 __ 7
Pot Allonlo 15i 110 61 117 133 11 I 73
SLAnn'sDay 37 37 50 2 60 110 7 73 *
CALENDAR OF EVENTS WINTER 2008/2009
NOVEMBER 1 5 JAMAICA INVITATIONAL PRO-AM TOURNAMENT ANNIE'S REVENGE II' MONTEGO BAY
NOVEMBER 7 9 PORT ROYAL MUSIC FESTIVAL PORT ROYAL
NOVEMBER 8 -15 KINGSTON RESTAURANT WEEK KINGSTON
DECEMBER 1 MOTOR SPORTS CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES DOVER, ST. ANN
DECEMBER 5 WORLDS BEST PASTA PARTY SWEPT AWAY SPORTS COMPLEX, NEGRIL
DECEMBER 5 7 JMMC ALL STAGES RALLY JAMAICA ST CATHERINE TO KINGSTON
DECEMBER 6 REGGAE MARATHON & HALF MARATHON NEGRIL
DECEMBER 7 JCDC JONKUNNU FESTIVAL RANNY WILLIAMS ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE, KINGSTON
DECEMBER 19 WELCOME TO JAMROCK KINGSTON
DECEMBER 21 DEVON HOUSE CHRISTMAS CRAFT FAIR KINGSTON
DECEMBER 27 EAST FEST GOODYEAR OVAL, ST. THOMAS
DECEMBER 31 HARBOUR FEST AND FIREWORKS KINGSTON
DECEMBER 31 LIVE MUSIC NATION KINGSTON
JANUARY 6 ACCOMPONG MAROON FESTIVAL ACCOMPONG, ST ELIZABETH
JANUARY 10 REBEL SALUTE PORT KAISER SPORTS CLUB, ST. ELIZABETH
JANUARY 22 24 AIR JAMAICA JAZZ & BLUES FESTIVAL MONTEGO BAY
FEBRUARY 1 BOB MARLEY PHOTOGRAPHIC EXHIBITION BOB MARLEY MUSEUM, KINGSTON
FEBRUARY 4 7 AFRICA UNITE SMILE JAMAICA YOUTH SYMPOSIUM LIBERTY HALL, KINGSTON
FEBRUARY 5 ANNUAL BOB MARLEY LECTURE UWI MONA CAMPUS, KINGSTON
FEBRUARY 6 JAMAICA CELEBRATES BOB BOB MARLEY MUSEUM, KINGSTON
FEBRUARY 6 AFRICA UNITE PREMIERE CARIB 5 CINEMA, KINGSTON
FEBRUARY 15 FI WI SINTING CELEBRATING OUR AFRICAN HERITAGE BUFF BAY, PORTLAND
FEBRUARY 23 AFRICA UNITE SMILE JAMAICA CONCERT JAMES BOND BEACH, ST MARY
FEBRUARY 24 REGGAE ACADEMY AWARDS NATIONAL INDOOR SPORTS CENTRE, KINGSTON
APRIL 4- 5 CARIBBEAN VEGGIE FEST & WELLNESS CONFERENCE- RHODES HALL PLANTATION, HANOVER
APRIL 13 TRELAWNY YAM FESTIVAL ALBERT TOWN, TRELAWNY
JULY 12 18 REGGAE SUMFEST CATHERINE HALL, MONTEGO BAY
Please note events are subject to change without prior notice.
For further information, contact Jamaica Tourist Board. www.visitjamaica.com
L AnnBay i Oracabessa
S1 Buff Bay
Hope Bay Port
P RTLAND Boston Bay
SR E onay
ST. A DREW Manchloneeal
4 JA AC TUIS *OTC DEAL I
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JAMAICA TOURIST 3
USEFUL PHONE NUMBERS
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Senior Editor of PGA Magazine and the PGA Professionals' Guide to Travel.
He lives in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
In fact, I'd say that Rose Hall makes an ideal spot for a golf vacation because of the way the sport and the
surroundings enhance each other. The Cinnamon Hill, Half Moon and White Witch golf courses all offer creative
architecture, natural beauty and outstanding service. Better yet, a round of golf is always a stress-free
experience tee times are easy to arrange, the courses are just minutes away meshing smoothly with a
post-round Red Stripe at a jerk pit on the beach. Any golf traveler who has had a vacation ruined as they
suffered through an overcrowded, over-sold round or had to travel an hour or more from their hotel, will wonder
why they ever went anywhere other than Jamaica.
The challenging Cinnamon Hill Golf Course (Photo: Cinnamon Hill)
Adding to the allure of staying and playing within the Rose Hall area, is the distinctive personality of each golf
course. While the White Witch plays through high hills with panoramic views of the Caribbean Sea, Half Moon has
a more traditional country club feel whereas Cinnamon Hill meanders from the hills to the beach and back again.
Each course features outgoing golf professionals who oversee the course, the instruction and the caddie
programs. Scotsman Ewan Peebles is at the helm of Half Moon golf course, while Cinnamon Hill boasts Trinidad
native Robert Ames brother of and former caddie for PGA Tour star Stephen Ames as the head Golf
Professional. Meanwhile, the White Witch recently appointed Michigan native and PGA member Mike Cole as
its new Director of Golf. Cole first came to the White Witch and The Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa Resort as a
college intern in 2000 and played a key role in the opening of the course. After stints as Golf Shop Manager
and Head Professional, he is now in charge of the famous course named No. 1 golf resort in the Caribbean
by Travel + Leisure Golf. "The allure of 'the Witch' is amazing. I fell in love with the course when I first came
to Jamaica, and I haven't looked back since," says Cole. "Our Golf Concierges epitomize true professionalism
and I feel honored to work with them every day on such a spectacular course.:
The White Witch Golf Course with its magnificent views (Photo: Riz-Caiton Golf & Spa Resot)
Adjacent to the White Witch, the Cinnamon Hill golf course takes full advantage of
an amazing swath of land that runs from the mountain foothills down to the
beach and back up to the hills. Rose Hall's second Von Hagge design boasts
three front nine holes along the Caribbean Sea and the old sugar plantation's
aqueduct. The par-4 fifth and par-3 sixth holes are right on the beach, and
bring the water and wind into play. Playing downhill into the prevailing ocean
breezes, you'll not easily forget the sight of your shots soaring out toward
the deep blue water on the fifth hole. The fifth green sits right on the
beach, close enough for you to hear the waves crashing, spy several
sunbathers and smell the nearby jerk pit. With a tee box that juts out
into the sea, you have to carry the water to hit the right side of
the sixth hole green. Winding through dense jungle foliage and
more historic plantation ruins, the back nine includes a waterfall
that can be seen in the James Bond film live and let Die. Be
sure to bring your camera when you play Cinnamon Hill.
Just down the new, smooth road from Cinnamon Hill, you'll find the Half
Moon Golf Club. This classic Robert Trent Jones Sr. design which makes
great use of the naturally undulating terrain of the foothills, has been
Sl, f lf revitalized by a recent $2 million renovation. You have plenty of room
Mike Cole, Director of Golf at The Ritz-Carlton
Golf & Spa Resort (Photo: Heidioch) off the tee, but be sure to trust your experienced caddie when he or she
gives you strategic advice on how to approach shots and subtle greens.
Always well-conditioned, the course may be the most
fun for less-experienced golfers or families. But for
serious players who want a challenge, teeing it up at
Half Moon from the back tees is no easy round. With
a classic golf shop and Clubhouse with an outdoor
bar, the course features the outstanding Sugar Mill
restaurant for a post-round meal to remember.
Visitors staying at The Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa, Rose
Hall Resort & Spa, Half Moon and the soon to be open
SolTs The Palmyra Resort & Spa have access to tee
times at all three Rose Hall golf courses a unique
arrangement that I look forward to enjoying on many
future trips to the Rose Hall area of Jamaica.
013UI t UI Il l l ad dai 11e vIItl wIL u lll ul uuI l
(Photo: Ritz-Calton Golf & Spa Resort)
The picturesque Half Moon Golf Course (Photo: Half Moon Hotel)
The White Witch is a true test of golf, weaving its way through the foothills high above the coast. The first tee
offers an endless view of the Caribbean Sea, setting a tone for the beauty of the 17 holes that follow it. The
highly skilled crew of Golf Concierges helps visitors navigate the undulating Robert Von Hagge design and
serves as storytellers of the area's rich history. This includes the story of the real 'White Witch' a 19th-
century beauty named Annie Palmer who owned the sugar plantation on which the golf course now stands.
Palmer, who is believed to have possessed magical powers, is said to have killed three of her husbands in the
plantation's infamous Rose Hall Great House, located near the White Witch Clubhouse. Now open for guided
tours, locals believe the spirit of the White Witch still haunts the Great House, though it is the work of Robert
Von Hagge that provides the mystery on the golf course.
JAMAICA TOURIST 4
JAMAICA TOURIST 5
COOL, MUST DO ADVENTURES
CAMEL TREK SAFARI
PROSPECT PLANTATION NEAR OCHO RIOS
Prospect Plantation's new Camel Trek Safari is a unique adventure
that you can experience nowhere else in Jamaica. Upon arrival to the
Camel Park, camel trainers will give you a brief orientation. You can
cuddle with the camels and take photos while you wait to saddle up.
Travel the beautiful countryside on the back of your gentle and docile
new friend, while comfortably seated in a beautifully decorated saddle.
This entertaining adventure entitles you to your own, personal 'Camel
Driver's License'. Call 994-1058. www.prospectplantationtours.com
KOOL RUNNINGS WATER PARK Ready to
Kool Runnings Water Park the greatest chill under the sun!
This state-of-the-art water park provides fun amusement
options to visitors and locals of all ages. Patrons are pulled
through the intriguingly designed entrance into its magical
water world with 10 amazing super-size water slides, 4 mile
lazy river, Captain Mikie's Coconut Island for kids, Anancy
Village, restaurants and much, much more. Open Tuesday to
Sunday from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. Closed Mondays. Call r
A DAY AT DOLPHIN COVE
I take you on an adventure (Photo: HeidiZech)
Fun amusement at Kool Runnings Water Park
(Photo.: Kool Runnings)
With lots of activities and fun, Dolphin Cove is the perfect place to spend the day. Visitors can captain their
own mini-boats and explore the coast, interact and snorkel with dolphins, sharks and stingrays, take a glass-
bottom kayak ride to explore the fascinating underwater world and interact with exotic birds, snakes and
iguanas on the Jungle Trail Walk. Pirates roam freely along the Boardwalk of "Little Port Royal" and the One
Legged Pirates will perform a 'Jig or Two' Jamaica Tours offers tours to Dolphin Cove from all the major north
coast resorts. Call 974-5335. www.dolphincovejamaica.com
SEA KEEPER FOR A DAY visitors enjoy a day at Dolphin Cove
DOLPHIN COVE, OCHO RIOS (Photro:.olphinCove)
If you have ever dreamed of working with dolphins, sharks, stingrays and
other creatures of the sea, you can try out your talent at Dolphin Cove,
which offers guests the rare opportunity to be 'Sea Keeper for a
Day'. Learning 'hands-on' training techniques used by the
professionals, participants assist animal trainers in food
preparation, feeding and training of dolphins, sharks and
stingrays. Call 974-5335.
ZIPLINE ADVENTURE TOURS
LETHE NEAR MONTEGO BAY
Zipline Adventure Tours offers you the longest combined
zipline experience in the Caribbean. Travel at 30 40
mph across great expanses of land up to 250 feet off the
ground, while volcanic spouts of adrenaline rock your core
as you whisk through the air with the natural beauty of
Jamaica as your companion. Designed to satisfy the
adventure needs of the entire family, exploration activities
at the Great River Adventure Center in the hills of Hanover
include canopy tours, bamboo rafting, kayaking, river
tubing, guided hiking tours, liqueur tasting, botanical
garden walk and plantation tours. Whether you desire
heart-pumping action or a more relaxed activity, an
abundance of fun is waiting for you at the island's first
adventure center. For more information call 940-7394
or visit www.zipline-tours.com
TRAIL MIX TOUR
BRACO STABLES, TRELAWNY
Having lots of fun at Zipline Adventure Tours
(Photo.: Heidi lech)
In addition to its great equestrian Swim & Ride, Braco Stables now offers you the chance to explore Trelawny's
magnificent scenery on foot and bicycle on their new TrailMix adventure. The tour starts with an energizing 2
mile hike through the canopied tropical forest up to Braco Hill, which boasts a magnificent panoramic view of
the coastline from some 300-400 feet above.
Iracu s 11all mix lour uolers suinmeHig Iur Uevrynouy (rnoMos:m NgeO /re)
The 60 minute hike is followed by a relaxing 30 minute bicycle trip over gently undulating terrain, through
hedgerows and farmland down to the stunningly beautiful beach. Enjoy a cool, refreshing dip in the crystal-
blue Caribbean Sea and breathe in the warmth of the sun on the soft white sand. From here, a driver will take
you back to the Braco Great House for a well-deserved refreshment and a final photo-taking opportunity at
the poolside gazebo. Wear sensible walking shoes, loose clothing and shorts with your swimsuit. Children must
be at least 10 years old. Tours are available daily: 10.30 am and 2.30 Dm. Call 954-0185.
JAMAICA TOURIST 6
The best way to see the island! For the finest tours and excursion experiences, travel with
Sus and witness the spectacular beauty and tranquility of our island. From the home of the
Reggae King to cascading waterfalls, adventure tours and the tropical underwater world.
Enjoy Negril where time stands still on seven miles of uninterrupted white sand beach.
THE TOP TEN MUST DO TOURS IN JAMAICA
Dunn's River Falls
Climb the waterfalls of the Caribbean's most beautiful natural attraction
Swim with the amazing bottlenose dolphins in Ocho Rios
Relaxing Lounge at amazing 7-mile beach and watch the sunset at world famous Rick's Cafe Adventurous
Croydon Plantation Tour
Capture the true spirit, history, flavour & culture of Jamaica
Spirit of Reggae (The Bob Marley Experience)
Walk in the footsteps of the reggae icon at his birthplace, Nine Miles
Black River Nature and Safari
See crocodiles and swim in waterfalls at the Black River safari
Reggae Zipline Adventure Tours Exhilarating
Discover the unique natural wonders of Jamaica on this amazing Eco- Adventure
Sail the Caribbean Sea and enjoy great weather and company
Ride your horse into the sea on our fabulous Ride 'n Swim
Glistening Waters Luminous Lagoon
Come with us to experience this natural phenomenon that makes the water glow Tranquil
Don't forget to rent your
water shoes with us! .
JAMAICA TOURIST 7
THRILL SEEKERS WAN
AT MYSTIC MOUNTAIN
aA visit to the island's newest attraction in the his above
Ocho Rios begins with a walk through prolific, green
untiing for the latesl in excilemenl Drive your very own bobsled down
thegrounds among the coong river to the Rainforest Sky
Explorer chairlift. Cleverly utilized to transport pioneering
Sn tadventurers into the ush, mountainous rainforest
down the watorslido to the infinffy pool and dine to satclacular vitws at lhe
FaR2 rs, Jamaicas first chairlift eevates exorers 700 feet
he ha arduring the km journey to the Mystic Mountain peak.
Says Barbara Luwitch, Marketing Consultant at Rainforest
Bobsed Jamaica at Mystic Mountaincooling river to the Rainforest
Sky Explorer is a state of-the-art l ift, manufactured byp
Doppemayr CTEC based in Salt Lake City, Utah".
Sr t t Breathtaking views of the sparking Caribbean Sea, Ocho
(Photo hei i leFlch) Rios and the roaring hils of St. Ann can be enjoyed from
d g the Rainforest Sky Exporer on the journey to the top of the
Mountain, where the Mystic Paviion and the Raway Stations
await. Upon arrival, visitors can purchase a photo taken
During the trip up the mountain and take measure inforest
many cElorfe dispa a n sate hopping at lthe Mystic Pavdion.
The most thrEing part of the visit, however, starts at the
the Raiway Station, a picturesque rouepca otf an earo 1900s
hiuside on the t km gravity driven Rainfoest Bobslea d ride
Educate yourself about the Jamacan culture at the Mystic experiencing the feeandng of being a member of the famous
Pavilion (PhotHidiThe h) Jamaica Bobsed Team. Expains Barbara; howevThe Rainfot st
Bobsed can be compared to a roller coaster ride through flora and fauna on a stainess stee track, 700 meters downh100s
and 300 meters uphill The bobsed track takes you back to the Railway Station, where you can opt to bobsed again,
visit the gift shop or glide down the water slide into the blue waters of an infinity pool which features breathtaking views.
The magnificent view of Ocho Rios from the R2 restaurant (Photo. Heidilech)
Other Mystic Mountain escapades include the Rainforest Zipline Canopy Tour, another exploit definitely worth trying.
This amazing combination of five zip lines allows 'zippers' to glide 170 meters through the jungle a la Tarzan' at a
near vertical descent of 10 meters before landing on a wooden platform which doubles as the mid-station of the
Rainforest Sky Explorer. From here zipline riders can access the chairlift.
In addition to the many fun activities, dining at the Mystic Mountain's R2 restaurant is a unique experience. Chefs
Jose Riquelme and Ravi Anne Kiran have created a contemporary menu that includes favorites such as Mystic
Mountain Burgers, Caribbean inspired dishes, vegetarian delights and an 'rie Pickney' menu for kids. With seating for
78 persons and ample outdoor space at the 700 ft altitude eatery, R2 is also an ideal spot for weddings and functions.
A partnership between Rainforest Aerial Trams and company founders Horace A. Clarke and Michael N. Drakulich,
Mystic Mountain is well on their way to obtaining Green Globe certification due to their commitment to creating a
green, eco-friendly attraction. The entire park has been carefully designed to place minimal influence on its diverse
ecosystem and terrain, which is home to natural springs, tropical plants, an abundance of trees and a wide variety
of birds. Explains Barbara; "The Rainforest Sky Explorer was built using F posts and the latest in chairlift tower
technology, which keeps the impact on the forest environment at a minimum" The bobsled track, which was carried
by hand through the rainforest, was laid enveloping the limestone cliffs.
Mystic Mountain is open every day from 7:30 am to 5:00 pm. Children of all ages can enjoy the Rainforest Sky
Explorer chairlift, but have to be a minimum of 12 years for the Rainforest Zipline Canopy Tour and at least 42 inches
tall and 8 years old for the Rainforest Bobsled ride.
JAMAICA TOURIST 8
JAMAICA TOURIST 9
259 YEARS OF APPLETON RUM
We were greeted with a warm smile from our tour guide Kayon and handed a potent rum punch upon our arrival
at the Appleton Estate. Thus, our rum-making journey began with a drink in hand. "Sip slowly!" we were
warned. The tasty concoction, a blend of four different types of Appleton Rum, can only be enjoyed at the estate.
The success of Appleton Rum is most certainly due to the combination of the island's superb natural resources
and the efforts of the estate. Additionally, pure spring water, naturally filtered through the limestone rocks of the
Cockpit Country, is used in the distillation process. All these elements combined make Appleton Estate Jamaica
Rum among the finest in the world. However, it soon becomes clear that the human element is another important
aspect in the production of premier rum. Appleton Estate's Joy Spence is the first woman in the industry to
hold the revered position of Master Blender. The creator of countless fine blends, including the limited edition
Appleton Estate 250th Anniversary Blend, Joy is a 'sensory expert' who describes the development of a rum
blend as a combination of art and science. Explains the
Master Blender; "To create a new blend of rum, you must first
identify the style of rum you want. Then, you look at the
stocks of rum that are available to you, bearing in mind the
compatibility of the different marks, the effects of ageing and
the chemistry profile. Once you have completed this process,
you decide on the best artistic combination.' Like many
Jamaicans, Joy enjoys Appleton Estate V/X Jamaica Rum
chased with Coca-Cola or Ting, a local grapefruit soda, or
Appleton Estate Reserve Jamaica Rum with "a splash of
Extremely educational, Appleton Estate's rum tour gives
Appleton's Master Blender Joy Spene insight to Jamaica's past which is deeply embedded with
(Photo:AppletonEstate) the production of sugar cane. The tour takes you through
(Photo.''e Appleto Estate)
I ~JAMAICA I
Par nm itrf idMIlUrn I a r1iNthn V
Ttul:;T) 7T 23S1 BTT 2272
FoTlurpl on A~ ^You
the entire process of rum making and although equipment and technology have improved greatly over the
years, the process remains the same extraction, fermentation, distillation, ageing and blending.
Appleton's pride is well-deserved as the estate continues to create award winning rums. The estate has shied
away from mass production, opting instead to maintain the traditional batch process of making rum. The details
of fermentation and distillation were explained to us by Kayon, before we moved into the Ageing House, where
some 8,000 barrels of rum are being stored in white oak barrels from Tennesee for periods between 3 to 30
years. Permeable, the barrels allow the rum to breathe as it ages, acquiring color and flavor from the wood
to become darker, smoother and sweeter. Each year, the barrels in the Ageing House lose 6/o of their rum
as a result of evaporation. "What a waste!" one might say, but the employees at Appleton call this the 'angels
share,' because it is the best. The cooling effect of evaporation works like natural air conditioning, which the
Appleton people wittily call 'rum conditioning', referring to the effect the evaporating alcohol might have on the
visitors of the Ageing House.
At the end of the tour, it is time to 'belly up to the bar' John Wray's Tavern to be exact. The tasting selection
included delicious options like Rumona, a creamy rum-based liqueur with hints of vanilla and Berry Hill, a
pimento liqueur which makes a good marinade for jerk chicken or pork. Included in the lineup was also a
bottle of Overproof White Rum which is used in Jamaica as an antidote for just about everything.
The Appleton Rum Tour is available Mondays to Saturdays
from 9:00 am 4:00 pm. Enquire at your hotel's tour desk
for more information or visit www.appleton.com to learn
more about 'the finest rum in the world'.
JAMAICA TOURIST 10
JAMAICA TOURIST 11
SPELUNKING IN THE GREEN GROTTO
Artifacts recovered from the caves and their surroundings suggest that Taino Indians, the island's first
inhabitants, used them for shelter. It is also believed that the Spanish sought refuge in this hidden lair during
their 1655 battle with the British for control of the island. A perfect hideaway and harbor for both runaway
slaves and smugglers running arms to Cuba, sections of the caves were used as a storage place for rum in
more recent times. As a consequence, the Green Grotto Caves have acquired many names over the years,
including Runaway, Dairy, Rum, Hopewell and Dry Harbour Caves.
Ine mysterious unnergrounn lake at te Green uronto ( hoto: onem ecn)
Providing a plethora of information about the caves' history, geology, plant and animal life, our expert tour
guide Chedd led the way through the innermost sections. Chedd specializes in accents and impressed us with
an excellent imitation of the late Aussie explorer Steve Irwin. 21 species of bats can be found in Jamaica and
the Green Grotto Caves is home to nine of them, including the 'Big Eared Bat', the 'Mustache Bat' and the
,NOL RiJWWS WATf ?Al
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Jamaican 'Fruit Eating Bat'. The bats are harmless, going
about their business while you tour their cozy home.
Thoroughly informative, the guides are often quite
humorous and love to share funny stories and point out
rock formations that resemble animals or famous people.
The highlight of the tour is the 37 meter descent, some 60
steps, into the Green Grotto's innermost cavern which
boasts a crystal clear, underground lake. The lake was
made famous as the location of the submarine scene in the
James Bond movie live and let Die, where 007 Roger
Moore enters the lair of the villainous Dr. Kananga.
One of Jamaica's first attractions to become Green Globe
certified, the Green Grotto team is committed to preserving
the environment. Plans are afoot to introduce additional activities such as hiking, fishing, canoeing and
picnicking in the near future. Even if you are not an avid spelunker, the Green Grotto Caves are fascinating
and absolutely safe. The only gear you need is comfortable shoes, preferably sneakers, as a complimentary
hard hat will be provided at the beginning of the tour. The 45 minute tour costs US$20 per adult and US$10
per child (ages 4-12), which includes a fruit punch at the end.
Open from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm every day. For more information
about Green Grotto, visit www.greengrottocavesja.com
or tel. 973-2841/3217.
JAMAICA TOURIST 12
JAMAICA TOURIST 13
Says William Mahfood, Managing Director of the West Indies Synthetics
Company (Wisynco) Group, the company behind the popular WATA brand;
"Once at the plant, the water is taken through a 6 step purification process
before a minimum amount of minerals and salts are put back into the
water to create a good taste.'
Wisynco's stringent water filtration and purification process has earned
the company official endorsement, and its water plant is the island's only
Sto hold an international HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control
Points) certification. Sand filtered, chlorinated, carbon filtered, put through
William Mahfood, Managing Director of the a process of reverse osmosis, ultra purified, micro filtered, sterilized and
Wisynco Group (Photo: Wisynco) hyper filtered, WATA bottled water indeed merits its tagline
"nature's purest and most perfected water" and with the addition of salt and minerals,
indeed "It's All Good!"
According to Mahfood, sales of bottled water have surpassed the sale of
carbonated soft drinks in Jamaica and Wisynco is adding production
capacity to meet the 40% growth in demand. Says the Managing
Director; "The increase in water consumption is a worldwide
phenomenon, Jamaica is just moving ahead of the curve.'
Customers have grown to love WATA which, like all of
Wisynco's products, conveys the message 'proud to be
Jamaican' through its patois brand name. Mahfood
declares that although he happened to be the one to
come up with the name, the product's tremendous
success is largely due to the efforts of Zachary
Harding, Wisynco's previous Director of
Marketing who was headhunted by the JTB
(Jamaica Tourist Board) as Deputy Director of
Tourism last year. States Mahfood; "A young,
bright marketing professional, Harding was
the driving force behind the development ,
of the WATA brand:' ,'
Recently, the company joined
/ forces with Ocean Spray to launch
a flavored water, mixing 4-5% Ocean
Spray cranberry juice with WATA.
Says Mahfood; "Jamaica is the largest
per capita market for cranberry juice in
the world. Therefore, it made sense to
marry the island's two strongest brands,
WATA and Ocean Spray, into one beverage.
Introduced 4 months ago, CRAN WATA with red
and white cranberry flavors has been a huge
success, a fact that Mahfood accredits to the
strength of the two brands; "The new product has
surpassed all our expectations, selling 5 6 times
more than anticipated. It is a great motivator for us
to continue expanding the range of flavors."
Recognizing the value of proper rehydration
while engaging in physical activities,
WATA has used sports as a marketing
platform to launch many innovative
media solutions. In 2005, WATA
introduced uniquely designed bottle
labels for each of the Premier League's
12 soccer teams.
~ ;r i
Describes Mahfood; "Marketed as the 'Official
bottled water of the League', we gave JA$5 to each
team for every case of WATA sold. The initiative
was hugely successful because it provided cash
contributions to each of the teams as well as an
additional, incentive-based cash reward to the two
In October 2008, Wisynco sponsored the initial
staging of the WATA Rose Hall Triathlon and
Wellness Festival, which seeks to position Jamaica
as a Sport Tourism Mecca' and health and
wellness hub. During the event, WATA showcased
a 'refresher' booth featuring its varied sizes of
bottled WATA, packaged to appeal to its many aficionados and
provided refreshment at water stops along the triathlon path. Says
Karen Rosen, Wisynco's Marketing Manager; "We are enthused
at this association and will actively continue to promote our
sponsorship of this historic triathlon.
Says Rosen: WATA is a brand that holds promotion of healthy
lifestyles as one of its core messages. The message we strive
to communicate via appropriate media at all times is that: with
8 glasses of WATA a day, you're bound to be taking the
Marketed in a range of sizes, WATA is available in the following A
formats: 330 ml LIKKLE WATA (little water) for children, the 600
ml PREMIER WATA (premier water) which comes in regular and
sport, 1.5 liter and 3 liter bottles.
The WATA brand is identified with most major retailers in Jamaica and Wisynco's client list includes customers
such as the SuperClubs, Iberostar, Fiesta, Island Grill Restaurants, Margaritaville, KFC, Wendy's, Burger King,
Domino's and Air Jamaica.
JAMAICA TOURIST 15
* % 1
HOPE AND SHELTER FOR JAMAICA'S ANIMALS
After years of working as a successful writer and producer in the fast-
paced music industry, Maureen Sheridan became convinced the
animal population of Jamaica needed her as their spokesperson. In
1996 the entrepreneur, who has worked with Jamaican Reggae greats
such as Third World, Sly and Robbie and wind instrument virtuoso
Dean Fraser, turned the idea into reality and founded The Animal
House, which was formally registered as a charity in May 2003.
Located on a 'hidden-away' property in the beautiful, St. Ann
countryside of Lydford, half an hour drive from Ocho Rios, the shelter
currently houses 94 resident dogs and puppies, 45 cats and 2 horses.
Their needs are attended to by Maureen, live-in caretaker Patrick Smith
and shelter supervisor Orville Reynolds.
After being greeted with a heart and eardrum breaking concert of eager
barking, we visited with a few of The Animal House residents. Dwellers
include the 17 year old cancer survivor Liza, a Jamaican Brown, the
half Pomeranian Foxy Brown and Jacques, a couch potato with his own
old sofa believed to be an unidentifiable mix of Labrador and Shepherd.
Another occupant with an interesting story includes Shaggy, formerly
known as 'tour guide' at Dunn's River Falls. Malnourished and
homeless, the Golden Retriever was spending her time guiding visitors
to the top of falls, until a kind cruise ship passenger from Miami
reported her to The Animal House. Today, Shaggy lives a healthy and
happy life at the refuge. Explains Maureen; "She thinks she owns the
shelter", pointing to the Golden Retriever, who is watching Orville feed
her fellow shelter residents through the window.
Once an animal is reported to The Animal House, Maureen personally
rescues the injured, neglected or
abused animal and provides
food, shelter and medical
care. Maureen has been
very successful in finding
permanent homes for
many of the animals that
she has saved, both in
Jamaica and overseas.
Shelter supervisor Orville feeding
some of the 141 residents.
(Photo.: Heidi oech)
We talked to two owners, who both adopted abandoned pets from The
Animal House. Lesley Ferrier from Toronto found Marley at a Jamaican
hotel while vacationing with friends 5 years ago, and began feeding the
stray dog daily. On her last night on the island, the pitiful Labrador mix
came limping by to look for her and Lesley was heartbroken when she
had to leave the dog behind. After finding The Animal House online,
Lesley called the shelter to explain the situation and after 5 nights of
trying to catch the dog, Maureen was finally able to call Lesley and tell
her the good news.
Lesley's new pet was soon on his way to his new homeland thanks to Shaggy oversees the yard of 'her shelter'.
the generosity of Sky Services and Air Canada and arriving in Toronto, (Photo:Heidilech)
Marley was received like a celebrity with welcome sign and gift bags. A local newspaper was waiting at the
airport to cover the story, which aired on TV and radio stations nationwide. After overcoming heartworm, Marley
eventually got used to the new environment and the 'lucky dog' now enjoys the cold winters in Canada!
Vida is another Canadian emigrant. Tiny and starving, the mutt was
found at a craft market in Trelawny by Leah and Steven MacDonald.
Again, The Animal House was contacted and Maureen put all her efforts
into rescuing the little creature. Today Vida, a one year old puppy of
undetermined whippet ancestry, is happy and healthy living in Ottawa.
In Jamaica, I personally deliver all adopted animals and ensure that
the environment is suitable", explained Maureen, who emphasizes that
adoptive owners have to be caring animal lovers. have only once had
to recover a placed dog due to inadequate care once," adds Maureen.
Marley loves the snow!
(Photo: LesleyFerfier) Dogs that are not matched with suitable new owners are guaranteed a
home for life at The Animal House where they receive daily care and lots of love. However, help is always
much needed and gratefully received. Apart from monetary donations, we need volunteers to play with the
dogs and lavish some attention on them", says Orville, who left his job at a hotel in the Blue Mountains to
work at The Animal House.
Explains Maureen, who personally has spent all her savings and much of her regular income on The Animal
House; "Generous individuals sometimes drop off bags of food or medicine. Chris Blackwell, Couples Resorts,
Sandals and the Four Seasons Hotel have been of great help:' But even when cash donations are added, it is
not enough for the organization to survive. With veterinary tech training, Maureen and Orville are able to
perform some medical care, but they are hoping that local vets will be willing to donate their services on an
ad-hoc basis some day to help keep The Animal House going. Behind the great mission of The Animal House,
lies an even deeper hope. "We want to educate young children to treat animals with love and compassion and
plant a seed that will grow and flourish through them in the future:
Help is desperately needed at The Animal House. Money can be donated via Paypal on
www.theanimalhousejamaica.org Call (876) 801-8386.
JAMAICA TOURIST 16
Maureen and one of her rescued pups Foxy
Brown. (Photo: Heidilch)
Leah with Vida at Bamboo Village in Trelawny
shortly before leaving Jamaica.
(Photo.: contributed by Lesh MacDonald)
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JAMAICA TOURIST 17
FROM AFRICA TO THE HILLS OF JAMAICA
I I IO
EXTRACT FROM THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF JAMAICAN HERITAGE BY OLIVE SENIOR. TWIN
When the English took Jamaica from the Spaniards in 1655, many of their African slaves fled to the woods and
played a major role in helping the Spaniards sustain the five-year struggle against the English. Eventually, one
band went over to the English but others continued to resist and by the time the last Spaniard left, the remaining
ex-slaves had established a life of freedom in the woods. They continued to harass the English settlers, raiding
plantations for supplies, arms, and women. Over time their numbers were augmented by enslaved Africans
fleeing the plantations of the English. The Maroons, as they came to be called, were predominantly Akan speakers
from the African Gold Coast, referred to as Coromantees, though other ethnic groups were also represented.
There are several explanations for the origin of the word 'Maroon' the most commonly accepted being that the English
word maroon, like the French 'marron' derives from the Spanish cimarron meaning 'wild'. Originally applied to cattle
that had escaped into the wild, the word soon came to refer to the human runaways who fled to the bush and
established communities in inhospitable terrain from which they resisted European forces sent against them.
In time, there were several Maroon bands organized under strong leadership. The mountainous areas they
inhabited protected their camps against the incursions of British soldiers and settlers. They lived as a fighting
force so they could move quickly and were able to communicate with one another by means of their talking
drums, the Abeng animal horn, and through their secret language shown to contain many Akan words.
The Maroons split into two main groups called the Leewards and the Windwards from their geographical locations.
The so-called Leeward Maroons lived at the western end of the island in the mountains bordering Clarendon and
St Ann Parishes and were united under the great leader Cudjoe, assisted by his brothers Johnny and Accompong.
In time, Cudjoe moved his band to the wild Cockpit Country in the western parishes. From there they raided the
nearby plantations for 40 years, preventing settlement of the interior.
Meanwhile, the other bands had concentrated in the eastern end, making their homes in the high mountains of
Portland and St Thomas Parishes and were called the Windward Maroons. Two of the leaders of the Windward
Maroons were Quaco and Kofi. But their greatest leader was Nanny, whose name is recalled in their old
settlement of Nanny Town. Like the Leewards, these Windward Maroons were also worrying the authorities,
carrying out lightning raids on settlements and retreating to their mountain fastness. The many swift rivers in
Portland and the high rainfall made pursuit difficult. As in the west, they prevented the expansion of European
settlement in the area, Portland Parish at the time being virtually unsettled. There were many clashes between
the Maroons and government forces sent against them over the years.
.Maroon Town villagers in 1908
However, the Maroons wanted to settle down as free people and in
1739 a peace treaty was negotiated between Cudjoe and the British
government. According to the agreement, the Maroons were given
land and certain freedoms, including freedom from taxation. The
main settlement in St. James on 600 acres was named Trelawny
Town in honor of the governor of the day and was the headquarters
of Cudjoe. Land (400ha) was also given in St Elizabeth Parish and
the settlement named Accompong after the leader of that band.
Shortly after Cudjoe signed the peace treaty for Maroons in the
west, Quaco signed for the Maroons in the east (on 23 June 1739).
But there was a split among the eastern Maroons and one year The Abeng animal horn
later, Nanny signed a separate treaty for her band, founding what (Photo: C The Gleaner Company Ltd)
is now Moore Town in the Rio Grande Valley. It remains the principal Maroon settlement in the area. After the
signing of the peace treaties, the Maroons lived quietly in their settlements. In fulfillment of one of the conditions
of the treaties, they returned runaway slaves and generally helped the authorities to maintain law and order.
But the peace did not last forever. In July 1795 the Trelawny Town Maroons rebelled, partly in response to long-
simmering grievances with the government. The immediate spark was that two of them had been convicted in
the courts for pig stealing and, to add insult to injury, had been flogged by a runaway slave whom the Maroons
had previously caught and handed over to the authorities. When meetings with the authorities failed to appease
them, the proud Maroons took up arms again. A few of the older Maroons heeded the governor's call to surrender
by 12 August and were promptly imprisoned, but many of the young warriors once more engaged the soldiers
in guerrilla warfare, raiding and plundering crops and plantations in surrounding parishes. There were only about
300 fighting Maroons in Trelawny Town but they held out against the
1,500 soldiers sent against them.
The Trelawny Maroons agreed to a truce only when dogs
were imported from Cuba with their handlers to hunt
them down. As demanded by the authorities, most of
the fighting men and their families assembled in
Montego Bay by 6 March 1796, and the governor
Lord Balcarres declared the war over on 16
Residents of Maroon Town in 1908
JAMAICA TOURIST 18
~i i ; x~
March. The Trelawny Maroons had come expecting
to negotiate another treaty, but they were tricked
by Balcarres who had personally taken charge of
the war, for he ordered all of them put on board
three ships he had waiting in the harbour. The
ships sailed on 6 June for Port Royal, and from
there transported the Maroons to Halifax,
Nova Scotia, Canada. Deported were 568
Maroons of whom 401 were old men,
women and children and 167 arms bearing
men. Their life in Halifax was never satisfactory
and after two years they were sent to Freetown,
Sierra Leone, in Africa. These Maroons were to form
an elite in Sierra Leone, from whom many of that
country's prominent families are descended and some
60 of them returned to Jamaica in the 19th century.
A MAP OF THE 1500 ACRES OF ST JAMES PARISH, JAMAICA,
GRANTED TO THE MAROONS OF TRELAWNY TOWN IN 1739
(SOURCE: BRITISH NATIONAL ARCHIVES, LONDON)
Maroon communities have never been large in numbers, but
they have imprinted themselves on the consciousness of the
wider society. In earlier centuries they created fear among the
authorities and the colonists, holding up settlement of vast areas of the
island through their guerrilla activities and putting military campaigns
against them high on the agenda. As symbols of resistance, they have played a
significant role in shaping the psyche of Jamaicans.
Maroon communities in Jamaica today are located at Accompong, St James Parish; Moore
Town and Charles Town in Portland Parish, and Scot's Hall in St Mary Parish.
Each Maroon settlement is governed by a colonel, an honorary title dating from the peace treaties. The leadership
is decided on among the Maroons themselves. The Maroons still retain some of their old traditions and the abeng
and the drums are still used on ceremonial occasions. The Maroons
distinguish between their 'business dances' to which visitors are
not permitted, and 'pleasure dances' which allow visitors.
Researchers have argued that the isolation of the early Maroons
helped to preserve many of the old African customs, among them
. the Myal healing tradition. Certain types of celebrations among the
Maroons also hark back to earlier times, including an ambush
dance' in which Maroons dress in green leaves to reenact their
guerrilla days in the bush and initiation dances and warrior types
dances testing male courage, part of the Kromanti tradition. Music
,and dance styles unique to them are also found among the
A proud descendant of the Jamaican maroons, Yvette Maroons. A Maroon religious chant recorded in 1953 proves beyond
Clark is the first ever Jamaican elected to the U.S.
Congress. With mother, Una Clark (left) and father doubt that an African-based pidgin existed alongside Jamaican
Leslie Clarke (right) (Photo: Anderson) Creole, and was a mixture of Akan and other African languages.
In recent times, much of the separation and
isolation of Maroons has broken down, helped by
intermarriage between Maroons and others and
by the need for Maroons to leave their
communities and live outside for
education and work. In the wider
society, it is impossible to tell
a 'Maroon' apart from
another Jamaican. The
themselves that were
once shrouded in
now sharing The annual Maroon festival in Accompong
part of their rich (Photo: The Gleaner Company Ltd)
heritage with the rest of Jamaica and the world through their
participation in international symposia and cultural events
and publication of research by scholars who have lived among
them. The Maroon community of Accompong now has a tour
for tourists and the celebration of the town's founding and
Cudjoe's birthday on 6 January is a public one, attracting
hundreds of visitors.
Nevertheless, there are still secrets that are never revealed to outsiders
and Maroons preserve among themselves remnants of their sacred
traditions handed down by the Maroon ancestors and preserved by each
generation. Maroons are credited with being the repository of African traditions, especially
those relating to healing, divination and sorcery and 'Maroon medicine' is still regarded by many in the wider
society as most powerful. Farming, fishing and hunting (including the wild pig) are still major Maroon activities.
All of these elements contribute to what might be called the Maroon identity, shared by any who claim it by birth.
Maroon societies have not only conserved elements of African culture but also provide a direct link with the
indigenous people of Jamaica, the Tainos. The oral culture has always held that such linkages exist, but they are
now being supported by solid evidence from archaeological research in old Maroon settlements.
Image of the Maroon country in 1908
JAMAICA TOURIST 19
Despite concerns about the many uncertainties affecting global markets,
a staggering 55% of last year's real estate transactions in Jamaica were
completed with overseas clients, who are showing heated interest in
local property. According to leading realtor, Andrew Issa, Managing
Director at Coldwell Banker Jamaica, you get a lot more real estate for
the money in Jamaica as opposed to other Caribbean islands. Says Issa;
"With prices starting as low USS450,000 for a luxury condominium on
the Gold Coast, Jamaica is still a bargain:
Andrew Issa, Managing rector of Jamaica's position as a unique niche market has been affirmed over the
Coldwell Banker Jamaica last year. Foreign clients, who continue to show emotional attachment to
(Photo: Coldwell anker Jamaica) the island and find it conveniently located geographically, are ever more
present in the high-end real estate market and brokers report that sales are continuing at a consistent rate.
Says the Coldwell Banker Director; "One can safely say that the market has experienced neither a rise nor a
fall, but rather a consolidation of justified pricing."
According to Issa, location continues to be a main factor for affluent buyers looking for a tropical island home.
Says Issa; "Pristine beachfront property in the US is scarce, it is very hard to find. Jamaica is close to the
US and it has really exotic, ocean-front properties without the crowded feel of Florida and the Eastern
seaboard.' Warm blue water, sun-kissed beaches and palm trees waving in the breeze evoke the image of
paradise for most. "With luxury homes it is location, location, location. And in the sun, sand and sea, a short
hop from the US, is where buyers want to be."
The steady pace of local real estate sales centers largely on the glitzy SolTs The Palmyra Resort & Spa, just
15 minutes away from Montego Bay on the north coast, and the chic beach cottages of the Golden Eye Villas
and Spa, located just outside Ocho Rios. Explains Issa; "These days buyers want more than just bricks and
mortar and they are willing to pay for it.' According to the realtor, the level of service is vital to buyers;
"Integrated resort developments with condominiums and villas are popular because they include a full array of
luxury services and amenities such as restaurants with famous chefs and designer spas. Importantly, they also
offer security and management."
Stretching along half a mile of pristine Caribbean oceanfront, Soils The Palmyra is largely viewed as the main
catalyst for the island's real estate renaissance. In tune with escalating trends towards a preferred lifestyle
environment, the gated luxury resort on the island's Gold Coast caters to high-end real estate buyers with a
penchant for luxury living. Visionary designers, excellent quality of construction, landscaping and interior design
have ensured that the resort is perfectly positioned to attract this clientele to what is considered the most
exciting development to come along in decades.
At prices 30-40% below that of other Caribbean developments such as The Ritz-Carlton in Grand Cayman, the
Viceroy development in Anguilla and The Residences in Paradise Island, Bahamas, Soils The Palmyra has
compelled many buyers to pick Jamaica as a second home destination. Explains Issa; "While penthouses at
The Residences in Paradise Island, Bahamas, sell for just over USS2,400 per square foot, a similar penthouse
at Soils The Palmyra in Rose Hall, Montego Bay is a great buy at under USS900 per square foot:' The Coldwell
Banker realtor points to the Government's move to allow premier casino gambling as another chief reason to
pick the Gold Coast. Says the realtor; "With the news of a casino gambling license granted to the developers
of the swanky development, people are getting excited about the potential.
With more than 300 international flights per week into the brand new Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay,
including 60 flights from non-stop markets, Jamaica is more accessible to visitors than any other Caribbean island.
Says the Coldwell Banker Director; "Just think about it. You can leave your U.S. home in the morning and enjoy a
round of golf in Jamaica by 2 p.m. Come winter time, that is quite a tempting way to spend the weekend."
It is expected that Jamaica will solidify its position as having the best real estate properties in the Caribbean.
Foreign ownership of land in Jamaica is unrestricted and with international financing available through First
Caribbean International Bank, the real estate offer is even more tempting. Says Issa; "The trendsetters who
are able to see the opportunity and act on it will be able to capitalize on their investment.'
JAMAICA TOURIST 20
JAMAICA TOURIST 21
Lester's international history includes the opening of several hotels
throughout the U.S. as well as Puerto Rico, Japan and Mexico. With the
imminent opening of Solis The Palmyra, the hospitality expert is adding
Jamaica to his worldwide repertoire. Says the General Manager; "When the
opportunity presented itself I couldn't resist being part of the opening of the
first Solis in North America and the Caribbean. Our goal is to create that
special service culture which pairs the natural warmth of the Jamaican
people with the resorts unique ambience. How can anyone rival that
unbeatable, Jamaican smile?"
Lester Scott (Photo: Heidiloch) A proud veteran of the United States Marine Corps, Lester received his first
introduction to the hospitality business at an early age, working in the family owned restaurant in his hometown
of Kansas City, Missouri. His infatuation with the hospitality industry was re-ignited when he was recruited to
work for Hyatt on the completion of his studies in Business Management at the University of Missouri. Explains
Lester; "The hotel business is addictive it gets into your blood!"
A few years later, Lester left Hyatt to join what at the time was a little known hotel company; The Ritz-Carlton.
Part of the team of trailblazers that developed the Ritz-Carlton chain to a sizeable 25 luxury hotels, Lester was
one of the group's 'opening team' for 10+ years, gaining unequaled experience in the many complexities of
opening new Ritz-Carlton properties in Kansas City, Pasadena, Hawaii and Amalia Island, Florida. "Working with
Ritz-Carlton in the early days was full of adventure and excitement, you never knew from one month to the next
just where you might end up working," he remembers.
Lester is as passionate about the relentless pursuit of excellence as Horst Schulze, the hotel guru who built The
Ritz-Carlton into a world known brand. Says the General Manager; "We built a lot of masterpieces in life and
when Mr. Schulze left Ritz-Carlton to create a new masterpiece, I absolutely had to be a part of it.'
Looking for a way to capture the luxury market and to go beyond the standards of service that the industry icon
set as worldwide industry benchmarks during his days at Ritz-Carlton, Mr. Horst Schulze is now on a mission
to deliver an even higher level of service. And, it has to be said, no-one is more famous for providing service
to the world's 'creme de la creme' than Schulze, the man behind Soils. With nearly 100 hotel openings under
his belt, Horst believes the selection of the right team members and the training process is integral to creating
a world class property. His philosophy that success can only be measured in 'repeat guests' and 'referrals' is
as embedded in the company's psyche as is the passion for creating exceptional service. Explains Lester; "Our
company is fanatically passionate about delivering exceptional service. Not sometimes, but all the time.
Consistent, caring service is our business and that is what makes us different. Mr. Schulze's philosophy is that
unless you have 100% guest satisfaction, you must improve."
While Lester's career has taken him all over the U.S. including Arizona, California, Illinois, Florida and South
Carolina, it was the latter that provided him with a great introduction to the culture of Jamaica. "We came to
Montego Bay to recruit seasonal employees for our resort in Daufuskie Island, South Carolina. We employed
upwards of 100 Jamaicans each year:' The local grapevine hasn't missed the fact that Lester is back on the
island to open up Solis The Palmyra, which has resulted in a flurry of phone calls and visits to the GM's pre-
opening offices. "There is great anticipation among our past employees, who want to be part of creating the
Solis level of service on the island," says Lester. Expectations are running high for the opening of Solis The
Palmyra. "I love the anticipation that goes along with the opening; there is a lot of buzz! We all eagerly await
the opening; this will bring many excellent job opportunities to the citizens of Jamaica. However, our selection
process is tough; we will only hire the best that the island has to offer:'
To deliver consistent service at an exceptional level, Solis is partnering with the best of the best, every step of
the way. States Lester; "We are extremely excited about the resort's partnership with Susan Harmsworth and
her legendary ESPA brand. Our 30,000 square-foot designer spa will be the finest spa facility in the Caribbean:'
The spectacular ESPA will offer the latest in holistic beauty and body treatments
by European trained therapists, VIP suites, private outdoor treatment and
relaxation areas, aromatic Caldarium and Laconium steam rooms,
vitality pools, lifestyle showers and ice fountains.
The search for the best within their field extends to all
areas of the operation as demonstrated by the
exhaustive search that went into hand picking the
right culinary expert for Solis The Palmyra.
"We were extremely pleased to bring a
Chef of Scott Simpson's caliber into
our ranks. With over 18 years of
experience working at some of the
best properties for Marriott all
over the world, including Asia,
South America and the United
States," says Lester. The culinary
artist will have a unique platform
to show off his flair for creating
innovative gastronomic delights
at the resort's three restaurants. 11 1
JAMAICA TOURIST 22
A fine dining experience with exceptional wines will be available at Hemingway's Hideaway, the oceanfront
signature restaurant which boasts unobstructed breathtaking views of the Caribbean Sea. Explains Lester; "On
selected nights of the week, the restaurant will seamlessly transform into an ultra chic lounge with live
entertainment. Our lounge will offer an atmosphere of sophistication and glamour in which people will come to
have a great evening.' Says the GM; "While our three meal a day restaurant features popular favorites and
delicious local Jamaican specialties served in a family type environment, the resort's pool bar restaurant
provides exceptional service, tropical drinks and great sandwiches for all to enjoy in a festive 'come as you
Built and designed to provide the finest luxury stay on the island, it is clearly the allure of unparalleled indulgence
and high service standards that have resulted in an unprecedented interest in SolTs The Palmyra. Affirms Lester;
"The property's best feature will be the service available to residents and guests. Each penthouse and villa
comes with a personal 'In-Room Attendant' who will ensure that guests receive the finest service the country
Golfers will enjoy preferred tee times and car service from door to tee at any of Rose Hall's
three championship courses and many more adventures await those who are not heading
directly to the signature spa. Two seafront swimming pools, a swimming cove and a palm
tree lined white sand beach are available for those who wish to lounge the day away. Resort
amenities include children's day camp, a Caribbean style gourmet food shop for on-the-go
delicacies, a business center, 11,000 square-feet of divisible ballroom and meeting
space, a top-of-the-line fitness center, a romantic seaside wedding gazebo
and a beachfront events
area. Concludes Lester; Our
goal is to provide residents and
guests of Soils The Palmyra with their
ultimate getaway." ,
* Fully furnished luxury condominiums and State-of-the-art fitness center,
villas from the mid US$450s gourmet shop and nightclub
USS3.55M Par.nnl Attandantc Pnnpiarn
has to offer. Whether you would like the fridge filled with your favorite foods before you arrive, have a glass of
Burgundy from Southern France served to you as you enjoy the sunset from your own veranda or require a
gourmet meal prepared in the privacy of your residence, our Chefs will be there to accommodate. If you wish
to book a dolphin swim or organize a babysitter, your 'In-Room Attendant' will be on hand to arrange it all."
Additionally, a full Concierge Service is available to all guests. Explains Lester; "People will come to SolTs The
Palmyra for different reasons. Some come to find solitude, others will come to take advantage of the adventure
of the island. We will help to tailor-make a complete package to fit the needs of each guest so there will be no
worries about the logistics, leaving guests to simply enjoy their experience."
Fully furnished and with breathtaking ocean views, the resort's beautifully appointed suites, penthouses and villas
feature full kitchens, high-speed Internet access and premium cable HDTV. Says Lester; "The guestrooms of our
residences are twice the size of similar rooms at any top hotel in the world'. But the hotelier describes the
penthouses and the villas as the resort's ultimate accommodations; "Our metropolitan type penthouses feature
sweeping views to rival any other, while our spacious villas are perfect for longer stays. Families will be very
comfortable in our villas; they are appointed with all the amenities needed to really give you that home away
from home feeling.
Call Jamaica Toll Free: 1 888 PALMYRA or 953 9787 visit The Palmyra Sales Center at 'The Palms' adjacent
to the Ritz-Carlton and only a mile from Half Moon resort. FREE TRANSPORTATION will be arranged.
SALES CENTER 953 9787
* Private, palm tree-lined white sand
* Two swimming pavilions
I IIUUIIUII M'LLIIUUIIIL, UUIIUIIIjI U
* Golf privileges to Rose Hall's top
* Clubhouse with ballroom and extensive Full service property management and
meeting space voluntary rental program
* Elegant or relaxed dining at three Competitive mortgage financing available
* 30,000 square-foot world-classI S
destination ESPA THE PALMYRA RESORT &SPA
ROSE HALL, MONTEGO BAY, JAMAICA
JAMAICA TOURIST 23
The Wells at The Whie Witch Golf Course, Rose Hall (Photo: icole and Marvin Wells)
Once Nicole had made her choice, Dr. Wells booked their stay at The Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa Resort in Rose
Hall and planned a wonderful celebration for his wife with the help of the hotel's concierge. Direct flights from
nearby Orlando made Jamaica an easy destination to get to which wouldn't cause too much disruption to their
busy schedules. This was to be the couple's third visit to the island. "You know what they say" said Mrs. Wells,
"after three times, you are a local".
The couple took note of many positive changes that had happened on the island since their last visit 7 years earlier.
Remembered Mrs Wells; "The last time we visited the island there was no highway. The drive from the airport to
Ocho Rios took 3 hours and the roads were desolate. The new highway is definitely a major improvement.'
Soon after arriving at the newly renovated MBJ airport, they picked up a Jamaica Tourist and learned about
The Palmyra Resort & Spa (now called SolTs The Palmyra). Two of the articles in the paper struck a chord with
the couple. One was a story about Dr. McLeod, a dentist like Dr. Wells, who had recently purchased a residence
at SolTs The Palmyra. The other, was an article about the island's new luxury development. "As a developer,
Mr. Trotta could have chosen any other location in the world to build SolTs The Palmyra, but he chose Jamaica.
We really like to see the opportunities he has created for Jamaicans by opening the door for others to invest
in Jamaican real estate," said Dr. Wells.
As owners of several properties in the United States, the Wells had just finished building their dream home.
Hence, they did not immediately consider a residence at SolTs The Palmyra. However, each day, a smiling
young lady at The Ritz-Carlton real estate niche would greet them and from the balcony of their room, they
realized that The Palmyra's construction site was right next door. Eventually, their curiosity got the better of
them and they scheduled a tour of the construction site.
Once they had learned more about the project from
Sales Executive Stasia Stephenson and Director of
Sales Debra Derrick, they were hooked. Explained
Mrs. Wells; "We were really impressed with the level
of craftsmanship and the attention to detail at SolTs
The Palmyra. Being from an island, I am happy to
see a development of this quality and we are excited
to be a part of it.' While Mrs. Wells is particularly
enthralled about the 30,000 sqft signature spa, Dr.
Wells an outdoorsman and golfer can enjoy easy
access to Rose Hall's three wonderful gof courses. A luxury residence at Soills The Palmyra Resort & Spa (Photo: Soals
The projected growth of the island and the plans for The PalmyraResort& Spa)
Celebration Jamaica, a major resort project next door to SolTs The Palmyra, further cemented the Wells'
decision to purchase. "I believe in the islands and what they have to offer and I am happy investors are
choosing a small island like Jamaica", emphasized Mrs. Wells.
Mrs. Wells described their residence at SolTs The Palmyra as "the ultimate birthday gift", while stating jokingly
that she does not know what her husband will do next to top such a magnificent present. Watching the Beijing
Olympics, Dr. Wells was amazed at the achievements of Jamaica's athletes; "For a country so small with so
few people, their achievements are truly amazing. I told Nicole that we made a great decision with an
appreciating investment:' In her excitement with the project, Mrs. Wells said: "I am dreaming of flying over
there to take possession of our residence, we are just so excited about it! Now we own a piece of Jamaica:'
Artist rendering of Solls The Palmyra Resort & Spa
JAMAICA TOURIST 24
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JAMAICA TOURIST 25
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JAMAICA TOURIST 26
CASINO GAMBLING ON THE GOLD COAST
eand aC r the oJther entertainment options will increase the occupancy of al the area hotels, as well as bring
significant benefits in the form of much needed after-dark entertainment:'
tver the sast 8 years, the area of Rose Hall at the heart of Jamaica's God Coast has experienced explosive
growth, turning the elite enclave into a veritable tourist mecca. Now, the promise of high-end casino gambling
thas turned the Goed Coast into a hotspot of development. Said Trottao aThe God Coast has another 8 years of o
asstrong growth ahead.
_overpass spanning across the highway, Said Trotta; "We believe that the addition of high-end casino gambling
nt is widely believed that the project will hep catapult the island into the big eagues in a boost that can ony
be a winning hand for Jamaica. Describing the casino resort as a tipping point for Jamaica, the ebration
Jamaica developer said th at the project wi be financed through itJ s first year of construction by its equity
partners. Commented Trotta about the effects of the current U.S. credit crunch; omiThe current crisis has primarmblingly
been brought on by a ack of confidence in the economic markets. Wi e expect at hathe credit crisis wi ease
up from the beginning of 2009, foowing the U.S. Government's baaheadout and the post-election euphoria, which
should restore confidence in the financial market.'
In comparison to Harmony Cove, the on other project a in the country to be granted a casino license, Cebat an onl
Jamaica has a key advantage. Whe reas the Gol Coast project benefits from Rose Hal 's existing US1by is
infrastructure, invested over the course of the cast two decades, Harmony Cove is facing huge infrastructure
investments in addition to construction costs. A private/public partnership between Tavistock Grou p and the
upJamaican Government, the 8,000 room project which incudes several euphotels, full-service casinos, championship
gof courses, tennis & racquet center, finan equestrian center, a water and adventure park, conference facilities,
reta shops, restaurants and oca attract ons. The project is reported to be on track for a 2010 construction start.
The introduction of casino gambling marks the culmination of an unprecedented in-flow of foreign direct
investment and international expertise to the island. Since 2000, Jamaica has attracted close to USS1B* in
foreign direct investment and uncover thke the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean, the isand has managed to
The Government's decision to allow full-blown casino gambling gives Jamaica yet another competitive edge on attract privatesector investments to support a rapid transformation of its infrastructure. A veritabe change has
the goba tourist scene, adding the glamour of casino gambling to the isand's allure of stunning beaches, taken place in every industry corner; tourism, banking, telecom, real estate, energy and transportation. n 2007
turquoise waters, welcoming people and aid back ifestye. Made official by Prime Minister Bruce Goding in his Jamaica was ranked 26th by the World nvestment Report for foreign direct investment, a remarkable feat for
a specia fund to finance much needed capita developments in heath, education and security. t is estimated that between 25,000 40,000 permanent jobs willa 2010 construction start
While the two mega resorts Celebration Jamaica and Harmony Cove have been green-lighted by the Government be created through the two new casino projects, as well as
for casino icences, legislation has yet to be passed by the Jamaican Parliament. Said Robert T. Trotta, developer an equa amount of construction jobs during the buin
of Sos The Pamyra and Celebration Jamaica "Celebration Jamaica is moving ahead and we expect casino period. The massive expansion of rooms wil aSince 2000, Jamaica has attracted close to USSB in
egisation to be passed by Parliament in the ast quarter of 2008. growth in the area of peripheral, smaller businessesisland has managed to
incudiThe Government's decision to allow full-blown casino gambling gives Jamaica yet another competitive edge on attract private-sector investments to support a rapid transformation of its infrastructuretransportation services, re has
The island's first casino hotel wi form the cornerstone of the US master plan development set to be rolled and addition tourist attractions. In 2007
out on ise acres of Gold Coast oceanfront adjacent to Sotyles The Palmyra. The main bu ce ldinding, a sixteen story 5
starnnual 2008containing 1500 rooms wion, house a 75,000 square foot casino, basing its entertainment offer around in a nation of 27 million
the introduction of sports book and table gamevelopments insuch as Rouette eduackjack and Baccarat. Catering to
a highend chentwo m e, the casino hot wion Jamaica offer a stateoftheart discotheque, conference meeting space,
including a ballroom, an outdoor function area, retail space, front desk lobby, a spectacular lobby lounge
over casoking the Caribbean Sea, bars, restaurants, kid's d ub, health cParliamentub, spa and an array of additiona facijobs during the buities.
The argest private investment ever to be made in Jamaica, Cel ebration Jamaica signifies a new epoch in the
island's tourism chronicle. With the extraordinary feature of being tess than a 15 minute drive from Montego
Bay's Sangster nternational Airport on the new 4 arstone highway, the muti-lB m ayered resort wipan tempt visitors
with an array of premier attractions which include a water and entertainment complex, a dolphin bay
marine attraction, a water amphitheater, a world class marina, a variety of restaurants, nightclubs,
entertainment and shopping experiences throughout. Anticipated to become a significant competitor
overlooking the Caribbean most popuar destination resorts, a total of 2,000 rooms and luxury rea l estate
componen l arrest privanned throughout the devel in Jamaica, Celebration Jamaica signifies a new epoopment.
Four secuded white sand beaches and a boardwak wifeatur connect the entire coastine from The RitzCarton
to the Rose HaInt Resort & Spa, a Hirport on resort. The connecting of the areas hotel will the area into an
integrated res miert comm attracunity in which visitors an water around frey t enjoy the many entertainent o ptins
avaiable, thus enhancing the overall experience. The resort wicip aso be connected to a 2,500 person capacity
convention center that the Government of Jamaica has committed to building in Rose Hall, by way of a pedestrian *Planning Institute of Jamaca
JAMAICA TOURIST 27
10,971 INFANT SCHOOL CHILDREN RECEIVE
TEXTBOOKS FROM THE PALMYRA FOUNDATION
While 2,000 infant school children received 15,000 free textbooks from the Foundation in its first year, close
to 11,000 four-six year olds benefited from books from the charitable organization this year. The price tag of
this year's book purchase was USS285,000 (JMS20.3M), part of which was raised at the Foundation's 2007
Fundraiser in Montego Bay, where The Honourable Prime Minister Bruce Golding gave the key note address.
I y,, tThe willingness to help the nation's youngest learn
to read and write clearly extends to the
Foundation's 40+ volunteers who helped bundle
and distribute almost 50,000 textbooks to 88
public infant schools across the island's 14
parishes. A global group of social entrepreneurs
including locals from Jamaica and expatriates from
the United States, Italy, England, India, Ireland,
Spain, Sri Lanka, Cuba, Columbia, Romania and
Canada, the volunteers all share a desire to make
a difference and the conviction that education is the
Inspired by the children: Madhu Mahtani, Raquel Dadlani, Scott Simpson key to creating a better future and driving the back
and Candace Hart (Photo: XKathiConstanzo) roads of Jamaica to hand out textbooks has clearly
been a joyful experience. Said Kathi Constanzo, The Palmyra Foundation Chairperson; "Once you come with us
to visit the children and personally distribute textbooks, the purpose gets into your heart and under your skin:'
Said Jamaican born Stacey Chung, who has traveled the globe as a music and artist promoter for many years;
"I have found a way to become a goodwill ambassador for my beautiful country. These children motivate me,
they inspire me:' Said volunteer Raquel Dadlani about why she became involved with the Foundation; "The
most important asset in Jamaica is our children, therefore education is vital to our country:' Volunteer Madhu
Mahtani voiced the same opinion; "Being involved with the Foundation makes me feel like I am doing
something to help the future generations of my country. I feel that I am making a difference:.
The Palmyra Foundation's book drive supports a
massive effort undertaken by the Ministry of
Education to ensure that students achieve mastery
of the Grade Four Literacy Test, the internationally
accepted standard for threshold literacy. Said
Minister of Education, Andrew Holness; "Currently,
we have implemented three programs designed to
eradicate illiteracy among our children.
According to Holness, one of the Ministry's main
efforts is the strengthening of teaching resources.
In practice, this program is deployed through 50
literacy specialists who work with clusters of Volunteer Suki Kapahi at Petersfield Infant School
schools to improve the teaching capabilities of our (Photo: KaphiPhotography)
teachers:' The Minister further highlighted the Literacy 1-2-3 program, which provides a curriculum and the
necessary support materials for the three first grades. Additionally, the Minister pointed to the Expanding
Educational Horizons (EEH) project, which is aimed at raising the literacy level of Grades One to Four students.
Said Holness; A partnership between the Ministry of Education and USAID, the program targets the 72 primary
schools on the island and seeks to improve school's leadership, management and instruction capabilities
According to Holness, the most significant factor in improving literacy in Jamaica is to get the nation to
understand that lack of reading and writing skills still is a widespread problem. Although mastering levels have
improved significantly from 42% in 1999 to a reported 71 o0 today, too many children continue to fall behind.
Stated the Minister; It is a national objective to eliminate illiteracy:
Commenting on the benefits of The Palmyra Foundation's distribution of free textbooks, Holness said; "n the
short term, the distribution of textbooks will strengthen the children's preparedness to manage the primary
school curriculum. In the long term, it will help develop a reading culture' Said the Minister; "Education is a
partnership. We extend our hands in working with other interests in the area of education, such as The Palmyra
Foundation, and are very grateful for the assistance we have received so far:'
The Minister's opinion is shared by teachers and principals across the island, who have welcomed the
complimentary textbooks. Said Mr. Eann Singh, Principal of Vaughansfield School in St. James; "We have
found that the children who have textbooks are much better equipped to deal with the next grade. They get
used to having their very own set of books at school and quickly learn the importance of reading.'
Chairperson Kathi Constanzo commended the Foundation's many supporters; "Every textbook matters and no
donation is too small. We thank the many volunteers and businesses who have contributed time and money
towards this year's distribution.
The Foundation's Chairperson Kathi Constanzo with a happy student
at Cambridge Infant School (Photo: Stacey Chung)
JAMAICA TOURIST 28
The future is bright...
...when you can read and write!
.............. ..... ....
This year, 10,971 children
received free textbooks
from The Palmyra Foundation.
SJ a-- _41_a Am
THE PALMYRA w" U .;"^ I-...v OU
F OUN DAT ION Tel: 1.876.953.9787
A non-profit organization, audited by Deloitte &Touche
JAMAICA TOURIST 29
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FROM MARTHA'S BEST WITH LOVE
Affectionately referred to as 'pawpaw' by islanders, the Jamaican
grown variety of the papaya is called the 'Solo'. Introduced to the
island from Hawaii in 1911, it is particularly desirable for its
sweetness. Compared to papaya grown in other tropical locations
such as Belize, Brazil, South Africa, India, Sri Lanka, the
Philippines, the local 'pawpaw' measures a remarkable 17 on the
food industry's Brix scale measure of sweetness, compared to the
Brazilian variety, which typically scores a 10.
Some of Jamaica's best 'pawpaws' are
produced along the banks of the
Martha's Best papayas ready to be shipped Martha Brae River by Martha's Best,
(Photo:Heidilech) a pioneering company who has
adopted their name from the fertile river, popular among tourists for bamboo
rafting. Here in the Queen of Spain Valley, Martha's Best annually cultivates
2.6 million kilograms of papaya, making the Jamaican company the
island's and the English-speaking Caribbean's largest exporter of the
sought after tropical fruit.
From selection to packaging, a thorough process and a
team of 270 employees ensures that only the very
best of its papayas leave the island. Reapers walk
through the orchards selecting the day's fruit
according to color, as papayas are ripe when the
hue is even all over. To reach the fruit, harvesters
often require mechanical assistance, as the
trees grow at a monthly rate of 1 foot and
can get very tall. Hoisted into the air by
hydraulically powered picking carts,
we joined in the day's harvesting
activities. From this height it was
amazing to see thousands of
papaya trees lining the valley
and we marveled at the task
of reaping them all. Despite
the bumpy ride we were
delighted to take home
the prize boxes of tasty
Martha's Best papayas.
Selecting the right papaya is an
art (Photo: Heidi Zoch)
Once collected, the papaya is sent to the packing house for grading,
cleaning, weighing and packaging. Martha's Best produces
approximately 3,500 boxes daily of the precious crop, which is
especially popular in the oriental food markets of United States and
Canada. Exported via air freight, the company's close proximity to the
Montego Bay airport and the frequency of its international flights is a
Martha's Best has won an array of national export awards and
continues to find new and pioneering ways to improve and expand its
operations. The company has plans to expand its papaya production
to include new varieties like the Belizean 'Maradol', as well as
increasing its production for the national market. To enable expansion
into European markets, the company is also working to obtain the
Europe GAP (Good Agricultural Practices) Certification.
JAMAICA TOURIST 30
JAMAICA TOURIST 31
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JAMAICA TOURIST 32
EAT, DRINK AND BE IRIE
MARGUERITES SEAFOOD BY THE SEA
Marguerites is known as the top seafood
restaurant on the north coast and it deserves
its reputation. This elegant and sophisticated
water's edge bistro enjoys one of Montego
Bay's best locations and specializes in fresh,
creatively prepared seafood dishes, which
continue to enthrall visitors. Enjoy an
intimate dinner served on the oceanfront
terrace by the attentive staff, while you
watch the fish swim in the turquoise ocean
below. Caribbean seafood specialties include
Cognac Lobster, Pimento Smoked Blue
Marlin and Tijuana Shrimp and flambe
specialties are prepared at your table. The
tasty desserts are a must-try. Complimentary shuttle service is provided in the Montego Bay area.
Open daily: 6:30 pm 10:30 pm. Tel: 952-4777 Reservations are recommended.
I CASUAL MONTEGO BAY
C ASUAL MONTEG BAYI ONT.
WHERE THE QUAINT CHARM OF
"YE OLDE ENGLAND".
MEETS THE IRIENESS OF "D JAMAICAN VIBESi"
PRIME STEAK, SEAFOOD AND
TRADITIONAL PUS FAYRE
WITH FINE SPIRITS AND ALES IN A
FUN AND FRIENDLY ATMOSPHERE.
ALL MAJOR SPORTING EVENTS VIA SATELLITE.
The Half Moon Shopping Village, Rose Hall, St. James
JAMAICA TOURIST 33
THE Rov,,A-,L STOCK I
THE IRISH ROVER PUB
DRAX HALL, ST. ANN
Jamaica's first authentic Irish Pub is now open in
Greenwich Park, Drax Hall only minutes from
Ocho Rios. After living in Ireland for over 40
years, Jamaican Winston Samuels returned to the
island with his Irish wife Angela and realized their
dream of opening the Irish Rover Pub. Angela,
whose father is an Irish pub owner, has delighted
the many patrons with authentic Irish dishes such as Eggs with Bangers & Bacon, Steak & Guinness Pie,
Shepherds Pie and the all time favorite; Fish & Chips served with homemade tartar sauce. We sampled the
pub's delicious, rich Irish Stew with tender lamb pieces and the great Irish/Jamaican hospitality to the fullest.
The couple has even Jamaicanized' the world famous Irish Coffee, replacing the whiskey with a generous shot
of Tia Maria and renaming it Calypso Coffee. The novel concoction is topped with lots of whipped cream -
delicious! A great hang out spot for the entire family, prices at the Irish Rover are very reasonable.
Open daily from 10 am until midnight (at least). Tel: 972-9352.
ELEGANT -I I'IOS
CSUA & LEGNT N RIL
AKBAR AND THAI GARDENS
11 HOLBURN ROAD, NEW KINGSTON
The island famous Akbar and Thai Gardens restaurant combines
two world favorite cuisines under one roof. For the best in
authentic Indian and Thai delights, visit Akbar and Thai Gardens.
This unique restaurant offers guests the opportunity to sample
outstanding Indian and Thai cuisine in traditionally decorated
surroundings. This chic eatery provides the ultimate dining
experience for a relaxed lunch or a romantic dinner. Choose
from the extensive dinner menu or join the ultra fabulous
lunch buffet, which is served Monday to Friday between 12 pm 3 pm. The outstanding menu selection includes
the well-known 'Tandoori Chicken' on the Indian side and the Thai house specialty 'Chicken-Gai Appleton' adding
Jamaican flavor to this traditional Thai dish. These tasty options can be complemented with a bottle of wine
selected from the extensive wine list Akbar and Thai Gardens offer. With a truly upscale yet comfortable setting,
Akbar and Thai Gardens is the ultimate fine dining experience. This is an Asian culinary journey not to be missed.
Akbar and Thai Gardens is also located at the Half Moon Shopping Village in Montego Bay. Open from 12:00 pm
- 3:00 pm for lunch and 6:00 pm 11:00 pm for dinner and cocktails. Tel: 926-3480/926-0605
JAMAICA TOURIST 34
IELEGNT- INGSO O
SANDREA'S STEAKHOUSE AT MARBLUE
MARBLUE VILLA SUITES,
TREASURE BEACH, ST. ELIZABETH
This elegant fine dining restaurant on Jamaica's south coast
is run by German host and gourmet chef Axel Wichterich, who
creates Jamaican dishes with his unique, European touch. The
Surf & Turf and the Filet Mignon topped with freshly caught
Lobster tail, Sauce Bearnaise and Pommes Alumettes come
highly recommended. Diners can pick their own lobster from
the lobster basin. Other exquisite menu items include Pumpkin
Bisque with Appleton Rum, Thai flavored Curry Goat and Filet of Red Snapper topped with Pastis Shrimp. Don't
forego a chance to try their tempting deserts. Enjoy fine wines from Germany, USA, Australia, Chile and Italy
and enjoy the finest in French brut; Champagne Veuve Cliquot. Open daily 7:00 pm 9:00 pm. Tel: 965-3408.
By Reservation only!
CASUAL& ELEANT -A SOUTHCOA
As the area grows,
so do our listings!
Situated on 1.2 acres in Spring Farm.
Offered oa US$2.75M
* 'Un4ib, r icean & ~'t f ourse view
* s m s, 9'acci
* 5 461i Swnil 5 rfniis
* c0, ro tKan 11rtff itnie
Townhouse at the Venetian
Overooking Ironshore Goli Coure
Gated Community, 24 hr Camero Watch
Three Bedroom Luxury for US$650.000
L'JScautirvyfiintHi.I 334 T.fr.
* Vaunttifdweiii et fen
* Sragnir sterd afplaiit
Gated Rose Hall Community
Walking distance to the "White Witch"
4 Bedrooms, 4 1 2 baths for US$16M
* "Caril;fan" 'eft air sifn
* Beautif~liiftrfiAids'l&k mnitaintr.ied
* S aio f tferriii wit finity pAof
* Ttab6liedf(uxiny viti l inta
* Separ staf lauirtc5 &' anJm t s5tag
Gorgeous Jamaican Retreat
Exclusive Goled Communily
The Greens in Rose Hall
6,500 sqft offered at JS$2.35M
48edrh/ 4 J/4 as
a fI rh wi' P 1 ,iio ,u t
Land to Build: Spectacular views, prestigious location in Spring Form
St. James, nearly 2 ocres, only US$700000
JAMAICA TOURIST 35
I CSUA INGTO
Bt Sumnt o the
LOUNGE & BAR
The brand new Cockpit Lounge at MBJ Airport (Photo: sland Entertainment Brands)
"An airport paradise!" is how honeymooners Amy and Eric Ewald described the new Cockpit Bar & Lounge at
the Sangster International Airport. Disappointed to be heading home, the two were elated to have been able
to experience the Cockpit Bar & Lounge at Montego Bay Airport Shopping Mall. Said Mr. Ewald; "After spending
5 glorious days here on honeymoon, we thought our vacation was over! The Cockpit Bar extended our vacation
a little, and we couldn't be happier:'
Located next to gate 7, more passersby are dropping by the new lounge to relax with a drink and sample some
of the truly authentic Jamaican offerings before heading back home. In addition to popular Jamaican favourites
like jerked chicken and curried seafood, the menu includes soups, salads and sandwiches.
Waiting time will go by fast at this inviting lounge (Photo: Island Entertainment Brands)
Operated by Island Entertainment Brands and co-owned by Versair, the bar is named after Jamaica's
picturesque Cockpit Country and decorated and designed by Christine Gourzong to fit this theme. Showcasing
a side of Jamaica that many visitors have not had the chance to experience during their stay, the new lounge
provides visitors with information about the Cockpit Country's indigenous flora and fauna, which has been
studied by many botanists and horticulturalists. Old colonial type windows and grand palm trees set the mood
for each person entering the Cockpit Bar. Featuring even more foliage and tropical elements such as a waterfall
and murals of the Cockpit Country, the interior is just as appealing as the welcoming exterior.
"The concept was built around the idea of offering tourists a glimpse of another side of the island," said Tricia
Robbins, Director of Marketing for the Island Entertainment Brands. "Jamaica is a lot more than sun and sea.
It is a beautiful country that possesses some of the world's most amazing landscape and
terrain. By bringing some of it to the Cockpit Bar & Lounge, we hope to encourage
visitors see more of the island," said Mrs. Robbins. Tel: 940-0190
JAMAICA TOURIST 36
LIVE AND DIRECT
ALFRED'S OCEAN PALACE
NORMAN MANLEY BLVD.
On Negril's famous seven-mile beach the best place to hear your favorite tunes is at Alfred's. This funky little
beach bar has been around for over 20 years and is a popular hang-out for visitors and tourists alike. Owner
Alfred Arthurs ensures that everyone has a good time at a very reasonable cost only US$3! Music fans come
by on Sunday, Tuesday and Friday nights to hear the local A.O.P band belt out great roots, rock and reggae!
Showtime is 10:00 pm. Open daily 10:00 am 2:00 am. Tel: 957-4669/4735
BLUEBEAT JAZZ BAR
GLOUCESTER AVENUE, MONTEGO BAY
For jazz and blues enthusiasts, BlueBeat is a delightful retreat, especially when house band 'Scotch' takes center
stage. Live shows begin at 9:00 pm Thursdays to Saturdays and during the rest of the week, the latest jazz and
R&B videos play in the background to set the mood. Tasty finger food and signature martinis are sure palate-
pleasers that fit perfectly with the bar's intimate and relaxed vibe. Open Daily 6:00 pm 2:00 am. Tel: 952-4777
CHRISTOPHER'S JAZZ CAFE
20-22 TRINIDAD TERRACE, NEW KINGSTON
Located at the ground floor of the 'ber-fashionable' Quad night club, the Jazz Cafe brings a lighter side of
entertainment to the four-level entertainment complex just off New Kingston's hip-strip. Take in the Jazz Cafe's
live music offerings on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7:00 pm when jazz, influenced by reggae, rock and
dancehall sounds, takes on a modern twist. Open Mon Fri 4:00 pm 12:00 am, Sat 4:00 pm 2:00 am.
IRISH ROVER PUB
DRAX HALL, ST. ANN
Jamaica's one and only Irish pub is located just 10 minutes from Ocho Rios.
Step inside this watering hole and you will get the feeling of being somewhere
in Dublin. Roots Reggae band, The Corner Stone Family brings their vibe to
the Irish pub on Thursday and Friday nights, dubbed Jamirish Style' evenings
with Irish food and drink specials. Patrons are treated to more live music on
Saturdays and smooth jazz on Sundays to go with their scrumptious brunch
Open Daily 10:00 am 12:00 am.
GLOUCESTER AVE., MONTEGO BAY
Another 'Hip Strip' favorite is Coral Cliff. Known for its 24/7
gaming lounge, this venue features an exciting weekly
entertainment lineup including Karaoke on Mondays at 9:00 pm
and a Cabaret act on Tuesdays at 10:00 pm. Talented house band
Jumanji performs Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays from
9:00 pm, on Fridays at 9:30 pm and on Saturdays at 10:00 pm.
Coral Cliff occasionally showcases seasoned local entertainers
in concert and hosts other special events so drop by to see
what's on. Open daily 24 Hours. Tel: 952-4130
JAMAICA TOURIST 37
NECESSITIES FOR THE PERFECT
JAMAICAN BEACH DAY
However, the perfect beach day requires some preparation. With the input of an experienced shopper and
beachgoer, we put together a list of 'must haves' to ensure that your beach day is perfect. You may notice
that most of our items are most interesting to female readers. This fact is based on research, which
demonstrates that most guys do not need more than their shorts and the last four items on our list.
THE PERFECT BAG
Jammin' Jamaica has a wide selection of cute and trendy bags. Our
professional shopper was enamored by this red straw creation with wooden
handle, large enough to fit all necessities and guaranteed to match most beach
wear. Find your perfect bag at Jammin' Jamaica, Shop #29, Shoppes at Rose
Hall, Montego Bay, tel: 953-9289.
To create a more sporty look, go with the light Jamaican 'No Problem' knapsack
from Gadget, guaranteed to hold all your beach necessities and more. Available in various colors at Cool Gear,
Shop #2, Shoppes at Rose Hall, Montego Bay, tel: 953-9645. Closed on Sunday.
THE PERFECT BEACH WRAP/ DRESS
With a keen eye for new inventions, our avid shopper came across The
Saress, an easy alternative to the sometimes difficult to handle sarong. Forget
knots and ties; this timeless creation is the perfect slip-on. Available at major
hotels across the island and at Jammin' Jamaica, Shop #29, Shoppes at Rose
Hall, Montego Bay, tel: 953-9289.
with any item of clothing in
THE PERFECT FLIP-FLOP
Infected by the 'Sex and the City' bug,
our fanatic was well aware that Charlotte
was showing off her poster of the famous
Havaianas flip-flops after the girls leave NY
Fashion Week in the recent hit movie. Thus, she
tracked down her favorite sandals from the 08/09
collection and settled on the very feminine 'Fit'
model in sand & light gold. With adjustable heel
straps, the Havaianas are very comfortable and 'go'
her extensive wardrobe.
Look for the flip-flops at island outlets including Fontana Pharmacy at Fairview
Shopping Center in Montego Bay, and at the WalkGood store, MBJ Airport Shopping Mall
which is open 7:00 am 10:00 pm seven days a week, tel: 880-0046.
THE PERFECT BOOK
At Casa de Xaymaca, our avid shopper came across some
interesting books in which to bury her head while relaxing.
Favorite picks: 'Waiting in Vain' by Colin Channer and 'Before the
Legend' by Christopher J. Farley. To learn more about Jamaican
Dancehall Culture, read 'Sound Clash' by Dr. Carolyn Cooper.
Another popular classic is 'White Witch of Rose Hall' by
Herbert G. deLisser, a 'must read' for Montego Bay
visitors. Casa de Xaymaca is located at Shop #17,
Shoppes at Rose Hall, Montego Bay, tel: 953-9987.
THE PERFECT SHADES
We found THE spot for trendy eyewear. Visit The Shade Shack,- a sunglass heaven for Ray-Ban,
GUCCI, Dior, PRADA, Oakley, D&G, Burberry and Versace eyewear. Our shopping pro tried on
the latest fashion shades from Christian Dior, a very stylish way to protect your eyes.
Located at shop #21, Shoppes at Rose Hall, Montego Bay, The Shade Shack has it all,
tel: 953-8604. Closed on Sunday.
THE PERFECT HAT
The hat a stylish necessity to prevent sunburn and keep you cool. Lined with a black
and white polka dot border and an appealing bow, this light straw hat has a classic,
trendy look. Available at Shady Daze, Shop #9, Shoppes at Rose Hall, Montego
Bay, tel: 953-2084 and Shop #6 Time Square Plaza in Negril, tel: 957-3680.
THE PERFECT BATHING SUIT
Our fashion freak hit upon this 'Latino Monokini' from Rosa Cha. With 3 peek-a-
boo spaces and elaborately decorated front panel featuring small beads, soft
embroidery and ribbon in several colors including jade, mauve, purple, florescent
yellow, blue and gold. Our shopping guru picked one of the artistic creations up
at the WalkGood store in MBJ Airport, tel: 880-0046. As of January 2009, Rosa
Cha will be available at KerryManWomanHome, Kingston and Half Moon
Shopping Village, Montego Bay.
THE PERFECT TOY
Also for big kids! These cute sailboat floaters come in all shapes and colors
and are the perfect size to hold your favorite drink. Available at Cool Gear,
Shop #2, Shoppes at Rose Hall, Montego Bay, tel: 953-9645.
Closed on Sunday.
THE PERFECT DRINK
Red Stripe the great island beer is another item Jamaica is famous
for. A 'must drink' for all island visitors and residents, brewing company
Desnoes & Geddes has now created the very popular, low alcohol Red
Stripe Light as an alternative to the stronger classic Red Stripe.
Available at supermarkets, roadside and beach bars island wide.
THE PERFECT SUNBLOCK
Protection is important and SUN LAB offers 6 spray-tube
formulas that fit perfectly into even the smallest
space. This water resistant and non-sticky
sunblock contains essential vitamins,
antioxidants, natural moisturizer and
invigorating, tropical paradise fragrances.
Available at Cool Gear, Shop #2, Shoppes at
Rose Hall, Montego Bay, tel: 953-9645.
THE PERFECT TOWEL
The beach towel is a basic beach need, but don't be
boring and sport one with dull colors. Add some extra
spice and bring the classic Jamaican flag towel. Available
at Jammin' Jamaica, Shop #29, Shoppes at Rose Hall,
Montego Bay, tel: 953-9289.
SOur shopper and the Jamaica Tourist Team wishes you
a great day at the beach!
JAMAICA TOURIST 38
JT ROSE HALL
finest resorts an
A luxurious blei
food that cretae
JAMAICA TOURIST 39
EXPERIENCE LUXURY SHOPPING AT THE SHOPPES
AT ROSE HALL
Sj This 'must-visit' attraction for duty-free luxury goods
Bay's 'Elegant Corridor', showcasing 30 of the
island's top retailers, designer boutiques and souvenir
stores in a landscaped, open-air plaza. Jamaica's
most exclusive duty-free retailers, including Bijoux,
Jewels & Time, The Royal Shop, Jewels in Paradise,
Exclusive jewelry store at The Shoppes at Rose Hall (Photo: SRH) Casa de Oro, Tropicana, Colours, Swiss Stores,
Chulani Jewelers and Golden Nugget, offer the latest in fashionable jewelry and luxury goods at this prime
location. Additional shops include designer boutiques such as Dej Vu, Sheenaz, Island Leisure, Flights of
Fantasy, Cool Gear, Jammin' Jamaica, the Shade Shack and Shady Daze. Jamaican souvenirs can be found
at Casa de Xaymaca and Tina's Arts and Crafts, while Rose Hall Cigar Club, Coffee and Spice and Booze and
Bites offer premium coffee, cigar and alcohol brands.
In addition to great shopping, The Shoppes at Rose Hall plaza allows visitors to enjoy Blue Mountain Coffee
specialties and light fare at 'Cafe Blue', or relax in gourmet splendor at the vibrantly colorful Habibi Latino, a
Middle Eastern restaurant located next to the signature waterwheel.
Conveniently located across from the Rose Hall Great House, and minutes away from SolTs The Palmyra Resort
& Spa, Rose Hall Resort & Spa A Hilton Resort, Ritz-Carlton and Half Moon hotels. Transportation arrangements
can be made through your hotel's concierge desk. Call 953-3245 or e-mail email@example.com.
OTHER POPULAR SHOPPING AREAS IN MONTEGO BAY
The City Centre downtown Montego Bay for duty-free jewelry, designer timepieces and souvenir items. The
Harbour Street and Old Fort Street Craft Markets downtown Montego Bay and Fort Street for hand made straw,
souvenir and other craft items. Stores along the 'Hip Strip', Gloucester Avenue for countless souvenir and resort
wear shops, Margaritaville and Harley Davidson merchandise outlets.
Island Village, Main Street is a premier shopping and entertainment spot
offering an open-air, garden setting with a boardwalk and an array of retail
shops. Duty free stores available include Casa de Oro, The Royal Shop, Swiss
Stores, Jewels & Time and Tropicana. Tajmahal, Main Street offers 26 duty-free
stores, several souvenir and apparel shops and The Hard Rock Cafe's Rock
Shop. Ocho Rios Craft Market, Main Street showcases local arts and crafts
in more than 135 stalls. Soni's Plaza, Main Street is another favorite
location for duty-free, jewelry, perfume, cigars and souvenir shopping.
Time Square Shopping Mall, Norman Manley Boulevard is the main shopping
plaza in Negril, featuring 14 souvenir & duty free stores and cafe. Enjoy
reggae music, liquor sampling and basket weaving demonstrations.
Luxury goods stores include The Royal Shop, Casa de Oro and Tropicana.
The Negril Craft Market on Norman Manley Boulevard is a popular spot for
hunting local souvenirs, straw items, carvings and arts and crafts.
-4 & T I M E
Duty Free Jewlers
Ciry Cnil i M '11l & Sl Ippepnat o tN HI all. M ((in gu y H ly. i l
Island Village &'aj Mah.l Cen!er. Och iHnis 87,.6 5. 862 to 4
ianigtIa c]nk rw
JAMAICA TOURIST 40
The name; LabelOne3, represents every person's ability to participate in the 3 basic steps of environmental
protection: Reducing, Reusing and Recycling. Encouraging awareness of our impact on the planet, the label
incorporates the 3Rs into all LabelOne3 creations and is a great
choice for those who are both style and environmentally
conscious. Popular for their beauty and quality, all
LabelOne3 designer products and accessories are
made using sustainable materials and processes,
offering a guilt free alternative for designer
addicts who also care about the milieu.
Said Vanessa Taylor, the creative mind behind the accessory
collection; "LabelOne3 accessories are perfect for
individuals who are passionate about style, change
and our planet." Taylor, who is the owner and CEO of
WalkGood, immersed herself in a 'green'
environment on a recent trip to Brazil and
emerged with the concept for the original,
sustainable line. Inspired by the country's
highly developed culture and tradition
for top quality products, Taylor
conceived the novel line which she
describes as "original and edgy". So,
mix some environmentally friendly
accessories with a Jamaican twist into your
wardrobe and "Green Up Yourself!"
Check out the novel LabelOne3 collection
at the WalkGood store in the MBJ Airport
Shopping Mall, open 7:00 am 10:00
pm seven days a week, tel: 880-0046.
Men's sport shoes made of recycled canvas and
recycled rubber tire soles. Available in several
colors and sizes up to 11 1/2. (Photo: WalkGood)
JAMAICA TOURIST 41
WHERE TO FIND IT: JEWELS & TIME
The first of a new series of timepieces celebrating the great cities of the
world, the Beijing 2008 Limited Edition ChronoScope by Swiss watch
manufacturer Ernst Benz, commemorates China's capital in its great
Olympic year. Inspiration for the design was found in the perfect
symmetry of the number 8, a sign of wealth and prosperity in
Chinese culture highlighted by the opening date of the Beijing
Olympic Games; 08.08.08. Limited to only 88 pieces the
ChronoScope is available with two different dial executions, Noir
(Black) and Vermilion (China Red). Only 8 pieces of the coated
brushed steel version, the Black PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition), are
available. Delivered in custom made Chinese-themed packaging, the
limited edition ChronoScope is offered with hand-stitched alligator straps in
red or black.
Available at Jewels & Time in Montego Bay at City Centre (tel: 952-3261), The Shoppes at Rose Hall (tel: 953-
4600), Island Village and Tajmahal Plaza (tel: 675-8762-4) in Ocho Rios. www.jewelsandtime.com
WHERE TO FIND IT: TROPICANA JEWELERS
Experts in The sparkle of diamond and the understatement of black', Chopard's
Happy Sport Mark II Chrono Baguette is a ladies watch diamond lovers will
not be able to resist. Set with 40 baguette diamonds (4.98cts) its bezel
reposes on a brilliant white gold case with a sparkling diamond on its
crown, whilst the mother of pearl dial features 5 mobile diamonds. The
Happy Sport Mark II Chrono Baguette is available on a black crocodile
S strap with a white gold clasp that illuminates this fantastic timepiece
S even further.
WHERE TO FIND IT: CASA DE ORO
A mark of status and sophistication, Cartier's Pasha
Seatimer is perfect for the gentleman who skillfully
maneuvers the seas of life. With a stainless
steel 40mm case, robust bracelet and
concealed folding clasp, the watch delivers
in both looks and performance. The Pasha
Seatimer is powered by mechanical
movement with Cartier Calibre 049
Automatic Winding and is water resistant
up to a depth of 100m. Presented with an
elegant, black dial which sets off the bold,
Arabic numerals of the timepiece.
Look for this unique Cartier creation at one of Casa
de Oro's locations; The Shoppes at Rose Hall (tel:
953-9755) and at City Centre (tel: 952-3502),
Montego Bay. At Soni's Plaza (tel: 974-5392) and Island
Village (tel: 675-8999) in Ocho Rios and in Negrils Time
Square Plaza (tel: 957-9530). www.casadeoro.com
For a more feminine look, the timepiece is also available with a brightly
colored crocodile strap in 18ct. pink gold, sporting a diamond-cut
sapphire in the crown.
Available at Tropicana Jewelers
in The Shoppes at Rose Hall
(tel: 953-2242) and City Centre
(tel: 952-6982) in Montego Bay. In Ocho Rios at Island Village
(tel: 675-8774) and Tajmahal Shopping Centre (tel: 974-2928)
and at Negril's Time Square Plaza (tel: 957-9530).
WHERE TO FIND IT: SWISS STORES
For the past decade, Agent 007 has been wearing a Seamaster timepiece from watchmaker Omega. Coinciding
with the latest Bond movie, Quantum of Solace, Omega has released an updated version of the popular
chronometer, called the Seamaster Diver 300m James Bond Featuring Omega's Caliber 2500 Self-winding
Movement, the watch is fitted with the revolutionary Co-
Axial Escapement to ensure long-term accuracy. With
screw-in case back and stainless steel crown, the watch
is water resistance up to 300 meters. In addition to its
impressive functionality, the watch is the series' most
elegant version yet.
Pick up the new Seamaster at Swiss Stores at The
Shoppes at Rose Hall (tel: 659-9274) in Montego Bay, at
Island Village (tel: 675-8975) in Ocho Rios, at the Mall
Plaza Constant Spring Road (tel: 926-6537) or Pegasus
Hotel (tel: 929-8147) in Kingston.
JAMAICA TOURIST 42
/J W L R
JAMAICA TOURIST 43
-Melanie Reffes is a travel journalist based in Montreal and specializes
in coverage of the Caribbean.
With relics dating back to the 17th century, his
collection is the largest in Jamaica with each piece
personally selected by Clarke himself. "With our
Spanish and British history from sugar mills to the
S great houses, our history needs to be preserved and
honoured," the 68 year old former accountant says
b Pointing to the nooks, crannies and cabinets filled to
brimming with Jamaica's past. "I have one hundred
Spanish jars and each one tells a different story," he
i says admiring the earthenware pots that are the star
attraction in the open-air lobby, so lush it's a
veritable Garden of Eden. Originally used to store
water, they also hid valuables during the English
conquest and are a humble tribute to the Spanish
A trip down memory lane at Alhambra Inn (Photo: Melanie Reles) chapter in Jamaica's history.
After returning from England in 1974, Clarke took a liking to old heating irons and pots and his collection was
born. Remembering growing up during the Fifties, scouring for artifacts nurtures his unrelenting passion for
all-things Jamaican. "I keep the items the way I get them," he says explaining that a simple clean-up is all
he does so authenticity is not lost. With his unbridled knowledge of trivia and natural storytelling abilities, he
lights up describing what life was like during the 18th century. "Folks would bring their lunch to work in this
carrier," he says referring to a metal container shaped like a cylinder, "It was separated into compartments so
meat and rice could stay fresh during the day:'
As a tourist admires a chimmy or British chamber pot, Clarke tells him that well into the last century; every
bedroom had three basic items. "Everyone had a basin, water jug and chimmy and the higher the family
income, the fancier the design with the best used by guests:' Another blast from the past and favourite of
visitors is his salute to the Sixties.
From telephones and radios to typewriters and ice
cream buckets, they illicit tender memories for the
gracious collector. used to listen to music from
Miami all night long," he remembers holding an old-
fashioned radio he says still works. The vintage signs
that hang just about everywhere also represent a
vital chapter in West Indian history. "We used to
have one of those," says a guest gazing up at a Red
Stripe and Canada Dry sign that is fifty years old.
Married to Sonia for thirty years and with one
daughter and three grandchildren, preserving
Jamaica's history is a labour of love for Trevor
Clarke. "My wife doesn't collect but she's fine that I
do," he says with a twinkle in his eye. "Some folks
ask if they can purchase the items, but I tell them
none are for sale.'
The exhibit is open to the public with no admission
charge. The curios are not only for the curious but
also for school and church groups who stop by for a
lesson in Jamaican history and old-timers who smile
when they see artifacts they may have thrown away.
Lazy meandering is encouraged with the hope
tourists and locals will appreciate Jamaica's history
for more than rum and reggae.
The Alhambra Inn is located at 1 Tucker Avenue,
Kingston 6. Sunday Brunch with a dazzling array of
island specialties from hominy corn porridge and
'Ackee & Codfish' to dumplings, boiled bananas and
roasted breadfruit is served from 10 a.m. to 1:30
p.m. (JAS875.00 per person). Tel. 978-9072, email:
Trevor Clarke in his garden of novelties (Photo: Melanie Reffes)
Historic soda and beer signs (Photo: Melnie Reles)
JAMAICA TOURIST 44
LLI r L ("e 1 (I L 1 9 1
HOUSE OF TANZANITE
SAURO. GIOIELLI OLTRE
TIFFANY & CO
24 SHoPPES AT ROSEHALL
2 TIME SQUARE MALL
NORMAN MANLEY BLVD
JAMAICA TOURIST 45
It is said that a tour with the Peace Corps is an
experience to draw on for the rest of your life. In
the last 46 years, more than 3,400 Peace Corps
Volunteers have served on the island of Jamaica,
helping individuals build a better life for
themselves, their children, and their communities.
Clearly, it takes a special kind of person to join
this altruistic organization working to create
world peace one life at a time. Talking to some
of the members of the philanthropic organization
who are currently serving on the island, we
learned that the chance to make a difference in
other people's lives and the lust for Adventure
are the main reasons most volunteers choose to
serve in the Peace Corps.
Volunteers receive pay and living expenses that
enable them to live in a manner similar to the
local people and two vacation days per month
Ambassador LaGrange Johnson with Peace Corps Country Director Howard of service, a total of 48 days over two years.
Anderson (Photo: U1S Embassy) Many use this time to travel to nearby countries,
expanding their opportunities for adventure and cross-cultural experiences. Transportation to and from the
country of service is provided and student loans are deferred for the duration.
Explains Howard Anderson, Country Director of the U.S. Peace Corps in Jamaica, who has been with the local
chapter since October 2006: For me, it was about seeking adventure as much as anything else, but the
motivations of our volunteers are many, from wanting to serve and help others, to learning a second language
or preparing for a career in international development:'
Anderson, whose favorite areas on the island are Port Antonio and Treasure Beach, advises visiting tourists to
get out and travel the back roads of the island. Says Anderson: Jamaica offers a rich and continuously changing
culture. It has the obvious development problems of an island nation, but the people of Jamaica possess a special
spirit of energy.'
Based at the Peace Corp headquarters in Kingston, Anderson and Programming and Training Officer Ginni
Wilderson are supported by a local team of medical staff, nurses, program managers and administration tallying
20. Says Anderson, a Seattle native: "We are very proud of the work our volunteers do, particularly within the
areas of eco-tourism and traditional tourism. Jamaica relies heavily on the tourist industry, and we are trying
to support their efforts. "
The Jamaican chapter of the U.S. Peace Corps works closely with U.S. Ambassador to Jamaica Brenda LaGrange
Johnson and once the required training program has been completed, every volunteer is personally sworn in by
Ambassador LaGrange Johnson at the U.S. Embassy in Kingston. Not even a 'force majeur' can stop the ardent
ambassador in her support of the program and the labors of love of its many volunteers. "The 2007 swearing
in ceremony was carried out at the U.S. Embassy in Kingston during Hurricane Dean!" remembers LaGrange
Johnson with a smile.
Says LaGrange Johnson: "Jamaica was one of the first countries to welcome Peace Corps Volunteers and it is
now an established 46-year-old tradition." A true philanthropist at heart, LaGrange Johnson is the ultimate patron
of the island's 100+ volunteers and never misses an opportunity to talk about their many altruistic endeavors.
Says the U.S. Ambassador: "Although I serve as the 'official' United States Ambassador to Jamaica, the 'unofficial'
ambassadors are our 100+ Peace Corps volunteers who make a real difference in the lives of ordinary
Jamaicans. These volunteers are the unsung heroes and I am proud to know them!"
Ambassador LaGrange Johnson has a longstanding history with the Peace Corps. "My admiration and respect
for the Peace Corps started when I met my husband's brother Don. He was part of the original Peace Corps
Volunteers who were sent to Nigeria in 1961, long before today's efficient means of communication with cell
phones and e-mails. Off Don went to Africa for two years, during which only a few letters were sent home.'
The Ambassador particularly highlights the local chapter's "Over 50" Volunteers program, a pilot effort for older
volunteers which has proved a huge success. States the Ambassador: "Soon 50+ year old Volunteers will be a
normal part of all Peace Corps programs, so for all of you who missed out on volunteering in your youth, here
is your chance!"
HJENNIFER BERT (26) FROMI LANCASTER, PENNSVAN[A
PROGRAM: ENVIRONMENT, CASTLETON GARDENS
Jennifer Bert's interest in the Peace Corps was ignited by her high school
French teacher who had been a volunteer in Cameroon, Africa, and the
teacher's many stories struck a chord with the young student. After
graduating in political science, Jennifer decided to join the Peace Corps.
The young adventurer has worked with the Castleton Development
Committee for two years, developing the visitor attraction Castleton
Jennifer Bert at Castleton Gardens Gardens into a public garden, a project which recently received a small
(Photo:Jennifer Bert) project assistance grant from the United States Agency for International
Development (USAID). "We decided to concentrate on plants that attract hummingbirds and butterflies, and we
also have two specimens of Jamaica's national bird, Doctor Birds, in the garden so that people can see it."
When we spoke to her, Jennifer was returning to school to get her MA in Public and International Affairs from
the University of Pittsburgh. "I have gotten so much out of my tour in Jamaica, working with the Development
Committee," said the volunteer. "And I am really going to miss the mangoes and the breadfruit!"
JAMAICA TOURIST 46
PROGRAM: ENVIRONMENT, NEGRIL
After finishing college with a degree in biology and marine science, Brooke
Anderson arrived on the island two years ago as a Peace Corps Volunteer.
Since then, Brooke has worked as an Environmental Education Officer with
wr the Negril Coral Reef Preservation Society (NCRPS), promoting activities to
preserve the coral reef among the local population and creating public
awareness. "I work very closely with the teachers of 18 different area
Brooke awards a certificate at Whitehall Basic schools to reach the local school children, and do presentations at the local
& Prep School (Photo: BrookeAnderson) schools. I also give guided tours at the NCRPS center and tours of the coral
reefs in glass-bottom boats:' Recently, Brooke was the coordinator of "Earth Day 2008" organized by the NCRPS around
the theme "The Effect of Global Warming on the Reefs of Small Island Developing States:' More than 650 persons
participated in the day's activities.
While in the Peace Corps, Brooke found love with fellow volunteer Donny Comer, another Peace Corps participant
working in the area of the Black River. Donny, who hails from Georgio, Oregon, is working on a project with the
Southern Regional Health Authority, building basic schools and giving computer classes.
Together, they are hoping to roam the world as Peace Corps Volunteers working as substitute teachers in
developing countries. Says Brooke: "I am going to miss the people, the food, the fruits and my beautiful house
on the Caribbean Sea.'
PROGRAM: ENVIRONMENT, NEGRIL
"I waited to join the Peace Corps for a long time, but it was always there
in the back of my mind," explains Sandy West. After raising her children
and running four different small businesses in the U.S. Virgin Islands,
Sandy decided that it finally was time. In six weeks, she sold her house
and her businesses, went to Texas to visit her parents and submitted her
application to the Peace Corps. Thus, she ended up in 'The Capital of
esoCasual' and since then, Sandy has worked with local hotels to promote
Sandy West with food vendor Sister Angela
Rose (Photo:HeidiZech) the Royal Palm Nature Reserve as a tourist attraction. "I didn't like
Jamaica at first. But despite their struggles, Jamaicans
are such happy, friendly and vibrant people. I grew to love the Jamaicans, and through them,
grew to love Jamaica:' Sandy also runs the Blue Flag project in Negril, monitoring the
quality of the beach water every two weeks. If the water is sufficiently clean, member
resorts and hotels are allowed to fly the blue flag that represents premier beach water
quality. Sandy has been on the island for 13 months, but plans to stay for another two
years, extending her stay in Negril by one year. Her ultimate goal is to be in the Peace
Corps for ten years. "It is my turn to give back, and I really enjoy using my life
experience to make the world a better place.'
HELEN ANl1D M1IKE lllll (WIVEB 50' VOLUfiTEii)
PROGRAM: YOUTH, LUCEA
The Henrichs are part of an older generation of people who are returning to serve in
the Peace Corps as 'Over 50' Volunteers. As newlyweds, the couple was looking for
adventure and joined the Peace Corps to experience another culture. Hence, they spent
their first tour together in the Philippines in the 70s. "We lived in a thatched roof hut five
minutes from the South China Sea, and have a lot of fond memories from our time there.
I worked at the YMCA while Mike worked with sports development," says Helen.
When the couple had a son, Michael, the family settled in Virginia where
Helen ran a private social services practice. In 1999, their son Michael
joined the Peace Corps and spent two years as a teacher at a
boarding school on the island nation of Vanuattu, west of Fiji in the
"We decided to volunteer again and asked for the Caribbean," explains
Helen. Based in Lucea on the island's north coast, Helen visits high
schools to promote conflict resolution, teach anger management and
help reduce violence. "We were looking for a meaningful experience,"
explains Mike, who teaches reading and writing to children aged
between seven and eleven at Green Island High School. "It has been a
very rejuvenating experience, and a strong reminder of what the Third
World is. There are still a lot of poor kids.:'
Helen and Mike Henrich came to volunteer in
Jamaica from Virginia (Photo: Heidi ech)
PROGRAM: HEALTH, WATER AND SANITATION, ACCOMPONG
"I joined the Peace Corps out of a personal feeling of duty to do something meaningful, adventurous and
challenging. I did not specify any geographical area and was assigned to Jamaica," explains Zebulon. "Zeb," as
he is affectionately called, is a self proclaimed "Jack of all Trades" with a background so diverse that his Peace
Corps supervisor thought he would be able to handle the somewhat 'rough' environment of Maroon Town.
Zeb's abundance of ideas soon inspired a new, successful program for Accompong's unemployed. With a
Bachelors Degree in music, the young volunteer used to work as a wood worker in a small guitar building
company. "I was trying to create a craft item with a connection to the Maroons and one day, I made a spoon.
The young woodcarver got the local guys involved, and soon they realized that the more spoons they made, the
more they could sell. "Realizing that they could make some money, more guys like Dowdy and Bungo got
involved and started making and selling spoons," explains Zeb.
Says Zeb; "We have also developed a website called www.cockpitrepublic.com, appealing to people who want
to go off the beaten track, learn about the Maroons and follow their original trails.' With no internet in Maroon
Town, Zeb has to travel over one hour to Santa Cruz to access the internet. "I would love to get internet up there
so local people are able to manage the web site," he explains.
Zeb also teaches literacy classes, typing and hand washing and works
with the Maroon Council on an on-going beautification program as
part of the Health, Water and Sanitation program. According to the
young volunteer, the most rewarding part of the experience is to be
able to make a difference. Says Zeb; "People need to know that
Jamaica is a safe place. There is a whole other world away from the
sun and beaches, and I am committed to making sure everyone finds
out!" What will he remember most when his tour is over in a year's
time? "I have met some great people and made some real friends:'
Zebulon Turrentine with Richard Robinson,
President of the Youth Club in Maroon Town
Volunteer Peter Hogge at Bellas Gate school in St. Catherine (Photo: Ze Turreonine)
(Photo: U.S. Peace Corps)
JAMAICA TOURIST 47
WHAT A GWAAN?
WORLD'S FIRST DESTINATION LOYALTY CARD
The world's first destination loyalty card, called the OneLove
card, will be launched by the Jamaica Tourist Board in early
2009. Announced at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the news
came fresh on the heels of Olympic sensation Usain Bolt's
2LUL0& world-record breaking 100 meter sprint that won gold for
j Jamaica. "The launch of the destination loyalty card is
Jamaica's first step towards embracing customer-relationship
Usain Bolt and the current Miss World, Zi Lin Zhang, featured marketing in tourism. OneLove is in keeping with Jamaica's
on commemorative OneLove card (Photo:JTB)
lifestyle and message of peace, love and unity", said Zachary
Harding, Jamaica's Deputy Director of Tourism. Jamaica's first OneLove commemorative card will feature Champion
Usain Bolt and current Miss World, Zi Lin Zhang, who graciously accepted an invitation to visit the island for the
inaugural staging of the 100m World Beach Sprint in 2009.
FORMER SOS RESIDENT GRADUATES No.1
Congratulations to Nigel Rose, former resident of the SOS
Village in Barrett Town, Rose Hall, who graduated from Valley
Forge Military College in Wayne Pennsylvania on May 16,
2008 as the Valedictorian of his class. Despite his humble
beginnings, Nigel stunned the college with his extraordinary
performance as the only summa cum laude student. From
here, the talented young man will move on to Drexel
University where he will study international marketing in his
Nigel Rose with Mrs. Michele Rollins and Tony McGeorge, junior year. Nigel was able to study thanks to generous
President of Valley Forge Military College (Photo:M Rollins) scholarships from The Mustang Foundation and Mrs. Michele
Rollins of Rose Hall Developments. Said Mrs. Rollins; "The finer the education, the greater the opportunity our
young people have to use their academic skills to become the leaders of tomorrow. There is no better investment
in Jamaica's future.'
REGGAE MARATHON, HALF MARATHON & 10K FOR NEGRIL
Runners and walkers: get into gear for the 8th Reggae Marathon, which takes
place along the scenic coastline of Negril to the sounds of live reggae music.
The annual Reggae Marathon attracts people from all over the world and this
year, the organizers have also added a 1OK Race to the event. Participants of
the Marathon and Half Marathon must report to the starting line at Long Bay
Beach Park at 5:15 am on December 6, to compete in the 'capital of casual'
race. Following the race, the Reggae Marathon Victory & Awards Jam takes
place at the spectacular Negril Escape, located on the West End. Visit: Runners at the 2007 Reggae
www.reggaemarathon.com or call 922-877. Marathon (Photo: ErrolAnderson)
AIR JAMAICA JAZZ & BLUES FESTIVAL JANUARY 22-24, 2009
The Art of Music' is back! Get into gear for the 2009 staging of the event, to
take place at the Cinnamon Hill Golf Course in Montego Bay. Since its
introduction in 1996, The Air Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival has grown into
the island's premier entertainment event attracting patrons from the U.S., Europe
and the Caribbean. Firmly established as one of the major, global music events,
more than 40,000 attended last year's festival. Now in its 14th year, the three
night festival has featured famous musicians such as Michael Bolton, Diana
Ross, Anita Baker, Air Supply and Shaggy, just to name a few. Another class-
act staging is guaranteed for January 22 24, 2009. For more information
Billy an at the 2008 Air Jamaica please call 953-8282. www.ailiamaicajazzandblues.com
'WINE WITH ME' MOVES TO HALF MOON SHOPPING VILLAGE
Stylish member of Montego Bay's fine dining arena 'Wine With Me' is moving to the Half Moon Shopping Village
as of December 1. Owned and operated by Cecile Levee, the restaurant offers an extensive wine selection and
outstanding menu complemented by friendly service and great atmosphere. For more information, call 371-4804.
PRIME MINISTER P.J. PATTERSON VISITS THE
Former Jamaican Prime Minister, The Hon. P.J. Patterson
has officially declared the Irish Rover Pub in Drax Hall
near Ocho Rios as one of his favorite watering holes. On
his visit on August 10, he was presented with a bottle of
finest Irish Whiskey by Irish Rover owners Angela and
inston Samue. The Hon. PJ. Patterson with Irish Rover owners Angela and
inson amueWinston Samuels (Photo: Ilish Rover)
NATIONAL GALLERY RECEIVES AMBASSADORS FUND DONATION
In July 2008, U.S. Ambassador to Jamaica, Brenda LaGrange Johnson presented the National Gallery of Jamaica
with US$27,330 under the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation. The funds will be used to repair and
preserve five nationally significant works of art, which
require urgent and special attention. Ms. Olivia Grange,
Minister of Information, Culture, Youth and Sports
thanked the U.S. Ambassador for providing the Gallery ...~,...
with resources for the endeavor. With a collection of
approximately 1700 works of art, the majority composed r A'o f AM
of wood, oil on canvas, or works on paper, The National
Gallery of Jamaica is the largest national gallery in the The U.S. Ambassador presents Ms. Olivia Grange, Minister of Information,
English-speaking Caribbean Culture, Youth and Sports and Wayne Chen, Chairman of the National
EngGallery, with symbolic giant check (Photo: IUS Embassy)
TRAVEL WRITER MELANIE REFFES RECEIVES MARCIA VICKERY-
The prestigious Marcia Vickery-Wallace award was established in 1987 as a
tribute to its namesake, the former editor of Brides Magazine who tirelessly
promoted the Caribbean region. Each year, the JTB, in conjunction with the
Caribbean Tourism Organization, dedicates this award to a journalist who has
followed in her footsteps with the same dedication. This year, the prestigious
award was presented to Canadian journalist Melanie Reffes, for the passion
Melanie Reffes receives her award
from The Hon. Edmund Bartlett, with which she has written about the vibrant culture of the Caribbean. With
Minister of Tourism (Photo: JTB) over a decade of experience in print and broadcast journalism, Melanie's articles
have appeared in numerous North American trade and consumer publications including the Toronto Globe and
Mail, Canadian Traveler, Agent@Home, Cruise & Vacation Agent, and The Miami Herald, among others.
GOVERNOR GENERAL HALL RECEIVES UK'S HIGHEST HONOR
The Governor General of Jamaica The Most Honourable Professor
Kenneth Hall has been conferred with a Knighthood, one of the highest
honors an individual can achieve, by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. The
bestowal took place in a ceremony at London's Buckingham Palace on
May 3th. Professor Hall was sworn in as Jamaica's fifth Governor
General and representative of the Queen on February 15, 2006,
succeeding Sir Howard Cooke, who spent 15 years as Governor General.
Following the knighting, the Governor General is addressed as "His
Excellency the Most Hon. Professor Sir Kenneth Octavius Hall, ON,
GCMG, OJ" and his spouse will be known as "Her Excellency the Most
Hon. Lady Hall.' Knighting ceremony at Buckingham Palace
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JAMAICA TOURIST 48