Eight Jamaican Resorts received the 2016 Readers’ Choice award for Caribbean destinations. The list ranks 60 resorts in the Caribbean. Jamaican resorts ranked fifth, sixth, 20th, 21st, 24th, 30th, 43rd, and 50th on the list. Over 300,000 travelers participated in the 2016 survey, the 29th edition of the survey. Millions of ratings were given, and more than 75,000 comments were used to compile the list of favorite destinations.
Jake’s Treasure Beach
In fifth place is Jake’s Treasure Beach in St. Elizabeth. Travelers cited the family-operated hotel for being the “heart and soul of the community.” The resort comprises an array of colorful cottages and bungalows with seaside views in distinct opposition to the usual chain-hotel experience. Jake’s offers various excursions, including bird-watching trips, yoga, fitness retreats, and cooking and art lessons. Dougie’s, the hotel bar, was noted for its legendary rum punch. Jake’s also hosts the yearly Calabash International Literary Festival.
Ranked in sixth place is GoldenEye in Orcabessa, St. Mary, on the north coast. The resort is an example of Caribbean casual chic, since it was the former estate of author Ian Fleming. The venue has expanded, with 26 beach huts added in February 2016, as well as a rooftop terrace, a seaside bar, a pool area, a snorkeling cove ,bay-side beach, grill shack and drink standalone facilities. The original three villas have been refurbished and surround Fleming’s five-bedroom house. A footbridge links this section with the beach-front lagoon villas. There are two excellent restaurants, the casual Bizot Bar and the elegant Gazebo.
In 20th place is the Rockhouse Resort in Negril. This resort was cited for its party atmosphere and for being a place where music is an integral part of the experience. Guests can book a steel drum troupe, a reggae band, and a DJ for an entire evening’s partying. A great spot for the budget-conscious traveler, although children must be over age 12 to stay at the resort. The Pushcart onsite eatery is evocative of a traditional Jamaican street food experience and offers an extensive rum selection. Rockhouse was particularly mentioned as a good place for a wedding,
In 21st place is the Jamaica Inn in Ocho Rios. This has been described as a romantic oasis far removed from the hectic life of the city. The inn is decorated in traditional British colonial-style colors of blue and white, and while there are no televisions or radios, there are marvelous sea views from private balconies that overlook the Caribbean. The cottages offer Indonesian-style interiors, and there are private plunge pools and private outdoor showers in secluded areas for enjoyment by guests. The open-air dining room is situated under a canopy of palms, and the menu offers the best in Caribbean cuisine.
Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall
Ranked 24th is Montego Bay’s Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall, formerly known as the Ritz-Carlton. The ultimate in an all-ages vacation, this is a thrilling destination that can be enjoyed by the entire family. It features spectacular Caribbean views, relaxing activities, and excellent cuisine. Staff are always on hand to help guests get the most out of their vacation, be it enjoying tropical cocktails at poolside or active fitness classes and watersports.
Round Hill and Villas
Ranked in 30th place is Round Hill and Villas in Montego Bay. This resort is said by some to have “invented” the gentile, tropical seaside ambiance when it opened in 1953. The resort has hosted people like the Kennedys, the Paleys, and several viscounts. It is possible to run into celebrities like Ralph Lauren at the pool bar. The venue features a timeless elegance that is rich in history and low-key luxury. The resort is located on 110 acres of private luxury villas, award-winning seaside dining, oceanfront rooms, and a wonderful spa situated in a lush tropical setting on a private bay. Relaxation is the order of the day, and couples favor the location for escaping to a tropical paradise.
In 43rd place is The Caves resort in Negril. This all-inclusive resort is hewed from a limestone headland near the historic Negril lighthouse. It features 11 dwellings with thatched roofs, and accommodations range from stone cottages t suites and a four-bedroom villa called the Clandestino, which is located in the jungle. The rooms offer vaulted ceilings, handcrafted wood furnishings, and a relaxed atmosphere. For active guests, the venue offers a chance to dive off the cliff into the beautiful Caribbean. Dining choices feature Jamaican favorites like sweet banana pancakes, while main meals offer saffron crab cakes. Spear-fishing and snorkeling are other activities on offer, and romantic meals can be enjoyed in the candle-lit grotto.
Couples Swept Away
Ranked in 50th place is Couples Swept Away in Negril. This resort is spread out over 19 acres on Seven Mile Beach, which has been called the most beautiful beach in the world. The all-inclusive resort features rooms with cedar furnishings and private balconies. There is a ten-acre sports complex where guest can enjoy squash, basketball, and tennis. There is outstanding food at the restaurants, which range from formal dining at Feathers to salads and juice at Sea Grapes. There is also a steam room at the spa.