Moon Palace Jamaica Grande.
Moon Palace Jamaica Grande. Photo courtesy of Palace Resorts.

Jamaica’s hotel sector receives boost with addition of more world-class resorts

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Jamaica has seen Canadian visitors hit record levels in the past few years and the country is adding to its hotel capacity with over 1,400 new or refurbished hotel rooms to be added to its accommodation portfolio.

From adult-only resorts to eco-friendly hotels, those visiting Jamaica will find an array of new projects expected to appeal to a wider range of travellers.

Over the next few months, Jamaica will open a number of world-class facilities, including those of prominent hotel brands such as Hyatt, Palace Resorts and Marriott Hotels. These developments are being constructed in various resort areas of the destination and are aligned with the island’s overall strategy to broaden its appeal to consumers.

“Jamaica is welcoming various hotel brands to the island and in several instances these developments are the brands’ first entry into the Caribbean,” said Paul Pennicook, Jamaica’s Director of Tourism. “These new additions reinforce Jamaica’s appeal as a tourism destination that continues to attract the best brands in the industry. The product provides travellers with an ever increasing diverse menu of accommodation for their vacation experience.”

Below are some of the latest hotel developments in Jamaica:

KINGSTON

Grand Port Royal Marina and Spa

Morgan’s Harbour Hotel has been renamed Grand Port Royal Marina and Spa. The hotel has been leased by Lashmont Financial Services which took possession of the property in October 2013. The new operators will spend about $60 million to refurbish the 60-room property. Located on the archipelago leading to the historic town of Port Royal, the hotel has long been one of Kingston’s entertainment spots.

Wyndham Has A New Owner

Hotelier Kevin Hendrickson is the new owner of the Wyndham hotel in Kingston after reportedly bidding US$17.6 million for the property. The acquisition will be the fifth property for Hendrickson, whose portfolio already includes The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, Courtleigh Hotel and Suites and The Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston as well as the Holiday Inn SunSpree Resort in Montego Bay.

Courtyard by Marriott

Courtyard by Marriott is set to open a 130-room hotel in Kingston, the island’s capital and business centre. The property is scheduled for completion in 2015. It will be the eighth Marriott Courtyard Hotel in the Caribbean and the third in the English-speaking Caribbean – all developed by Caribe Hospitality.

OCHO RIOS

Moon Palace Jamaica Grande

Palace Resorts has announced plans for its newest property, Moon Palace Jamaica Grande, the company’s first resort located outside of Mexico. Expected to open in early 2015, the all-inclusive property is undergoing a multimillion-dollar renovation. Moon Palace Jamaica Grande will also feature a 35,000-square foot wellness sanctuary as well as 730 guest rooms and suites on a 17-acre beachfront property in Ocho Rios.

MONTEGO BAY

Playa Hotels & Resorts

Following a multi-million dollar renovation, the new family-friendly Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall and the adjacent adults-only Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall will open on Nov. 23. It will boast ‘six-star’ all-inclusive properties with over 500 rooms; restaurants; several dramatic cascading pools; a full-service spa and wellness centre; beach butler services and a 24-hour suite service. The property is owned and managed by Playa Hotels & Resorts and located in Montego Bay.

SOUTH COAST

Jack Sprat Shack

In September 2014, Jakes Hotel in St. Elizabeth opened the doors to Jack Sprat Shack, a new accommodation for eco-conscious travellers and groups. Fitted with solar energy powering all electrics, air conditioning and hot water, The Shack comprises two dorms – each with 20 bunk beds, six double rooms and shared locker room-style bathrooms. The property also has additional bedrooms located on the upper floor for those who require more privacy.

For more information, go to visitjamaica.com.