When I went to Jamaica in the late summer of 2007 I had the goal of visiting some of Jamaica's smaller non commercial resorts. I only got to see a couple of them. Most were disappointments. The Jamaica Inn was everything I thought it would be and so much more. I was in search of a true luxury hotel and the Jamaica Inn is that 100%.
It was built in 1950 and still carries the charm of that day before the big resort chains became popular and flooded the market to mainstream tourism. This resort closes down for one month a year in the fall to remodel rooms and make general renovations. The furniture of the resort in the rooms and in public areas is up to date but still has the charm and class of a brand new resort built in the 50's.
Their rooms reflect the true spirit of Jamaica that 99.9% of people visiting Jamaica do not experience. The balcony suites (their base rooms category) offer a very classy bedroom. Then they have a living room that is on the patio or balcony. The Verandah Suites are a bit bigger and have more furniture on the balcony. This resort has a lot of rooms types that they only have one built. These include the Cowdry Suite, the Blue Cottage, the White Suite and their Cottages. I had the pleasure of seeing Cottage 3 which is hands down the most luxurious room in Jamaica that I have seen. When you walk in you are in a huge living room. Immediately you know you are in one of the coolest places on Earth. The living room and the bedroom had huge doors that open up the cottage to the nice breeze coming off the Caribbean. The bedroom is beautifully decorated. The bathroom is to die for. The sinks are on an island in the middle of the room. There is a Jacuzzi in there, a shower, a toilet room and a door going outside. Outside there is a private open air shower that is extremely romantic. When walking out of the bedroom or living room on to the huge patio you are given a lot of options. You have a beautiful plunge pool (click on picture above). You have sun loungers on the deck. You have sun loungers on a lower deck. You have sun loungers on another deck and 2 ladders to water. You can snorkel right from this room.
For dinner there is only one restaurant on site. The other is for breakfast and lunch. The menu changes daily. I have the menu from July 22nd (my site inspection was done on the 23rd). One appetizer was Crispy Spicy Lobster Fritters set on basil infused avocado mango relish. One soup was a New England Clam Chowder with root vegetables. The salad was Organic Mixed Green Lettuce with crispy wonton heart of palm and papaya lime dressing. Entrees included a vegetarian section and a catch of the day. In addition there was a Rosemary Influenced Supreme Chicken Breast with a spicy pumpkin and ginger stuffing. Another option was a Pan Seared Fillet of Mahi Mahi crusted with Herb Butter set on a tomato black olive coulis. Another option was Grilled Black Angus Beef Fillet Mignon with a béarnaise sause. Those on the All-Inclusive can go to off property restaurants one time at each restaurant where your meal is included but transfers, alcohol, and lobster are not. Those restaurants are Evita's and Passage to India If you want to visit either of these restaurants a second time that will be at your own expence.
This is a very relaxed resort. This is the type of place that you turn off your cell phone, put your watch in your safe, not worry about what time it is and just decompress. They have a book library for those who finish reading the books they have brought. They have a crochet field adjacent to the pool. The beach is one of the best in Ocho Rios with very calm water good enough for snorkeling The resort is located about 10 minutes for downtown Ocho Rios, 15 minutes from Dunn's River Falls, and 10 minutes for the Island Village Shopping Center where Margaritaville and the Reggae Explosion Museum are located.
The spa at the Jamaica Inn is very unique. They do their spa treatments outside in an ocean view hut located on a cliff. They offer the traditional spa treatments but also go beyond that by introducing treatments and techniques not found at most places.
While this resort is not adults only, they do have age requirements during certain times of the year. During the summer children 10 and over are welcome to stay at the resort. During the winter season children have to 12 or older.
Some of the awards The Jamaica Inn has won recently are:
#49 in Travel & Leisure's Top 100 Hotels in the World
#1 Conde Nast Traveler's Best Resort in Jamaica
#6 in Conde Nast Traveler's Reader Choice Awards for the top 100 hotels in the world
#10 in Conde Nast Traveler's Caribbean Gold List
Reasons why you would book this resort: You are looking for a resort that captures the essence of Jamaica. You are looking for a resort that is very relaxing with next to no kids around. You are looking for a resort that will offer the perfect atmosphere for a romantic honeymoon or anniversary. You are looking for a resort with few rooms yet each unique in their own way.
Reasons why you would not book this resort: You are looking for a resort that has a kids program. You are looking for a resort that is more lively and has more activities.