You’ll find this wonderful, tropical oasis just a short thirty minute drive from the chaos of Papine. Winding up through small hamlets nestled in the beautiful Blue Mountains, every twist and turn in the road offers dramatic views of Kingston below.
Reaching this luxurious hotel and its 26 acres of tropical mountain gardens is a real treat. Owned by Chris Blackwell of Island Records fame, the walls are adorned with the faces of many of the musical greats he worked with. This place is a hotel but the facilities are open to non-guests by appointment – you will need to call and confirm your time of arrival. There is an entrance fee of about $1000 JMD (about $6) which includes a cup of Blue Mountain coffee. However, the entrance fee is waived if you’re dining or using the spa facilities. If you’re not already feeling zen after a walk around the gardens try a massage at the spa. As you close your eyes to the sounds of cicadas and birds tweeting, as water trickles on the mountain outside your window you might wonder how close to paradise you actually are. Then all that’s left to do is s surrender to the calm and enjoy a rum cocktail by the log fire as the sun sets over Kingston.
Reservations for lunch and dinner required. Strawberry Hill Hotel, New Castle Road B1, St. Andrew, Jamaica. Tel: (876) 944-8400.