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Why Jamaica?

In 2003, I fell in love with Jamaica on my very first visit here. It was my birthday, so a special trip. The weather in May was beautiful, as it always is in Jamaica. I am a scuba diver, so diving was of course part of the plan for the vacation, but I wanted to experience the culture and the island for its true nature. Because it was my first trip, I stayed at an all-inclusive resort, more because I did not know any different. The resort was a bit boring for me, not much to do and no real “culture” of the island to offer. After getting settled on the travel day, and then doing a couple of scuba dives the next day, I decided to do a night dive the following night, the night before my birthday. The dive instructor, Radcliffe Ebanks (aka “Ebi”), who is now a very dear friend of mine and has been for almost 20 years, was an amazing instructor and really showed us the ocean life that resides under Jamaica’s crystal-clear waters.



I had asked Ebi where a good place to go to see live music for my birthday, as I wanted to get out of the all-inclusive and experience the true nature of the island. He had suggested a little bar down the street, so we made plans for dinner at a little spot in the rain forest, and then to go dancing afterward. It was a perfect plan.

Dinner at the local spot was simply delicious. To this day, I cannot remember the name of the place and wish I had written it down. The curried shrimp was to die for, and we were sitting outside with all the sounds of nature surrounding us, tree frogs chirping, beautiful foliage. . . I could not have asked for a prettier spot to celebrate life.

After dinner, we went to this little bar, “Take It Easy” outside of Runaway Bay, a British owned little pub. We thought there would be live music, but it was a DJ. The place was packed, and everyone was dancing. I love to dance! My partner at the time does not dance. So Ebi and I danced while he sat at the bar and made friends with a local Rastafarian. I was the only white woman in the place, but no one seemed to care. Jamaica’s national motto is “Out of Many, One People,” which comes from the fact that Jamaica is a multi-racial society. You see this when you travel the island that there are people of all color, white, light skinned, through the rainbow to very dark skinned. One of the beauties of Jamaican culture is that most Jamaican people do not see you for the color of your skin and racism is a foreign concept.

It was a birthday that stands out as one of the best in my memories. And that is when I fell in love with this beautiful island that has so much culture and life to offer.



I fell in love with the island so much so that 16 years later I decided to buy property here and build a small boutique resort, Blue Skies Beach Resort (nestled right in the middle of 7-Mile Beach in Negril, one of the world-famous beaches), so that I can share my love of the island, its culture, its food, and its rich heritage with people around the world.



Editor’s note: Please note that I do not encourage people to travel anywhere in the world without taking measures to be safe and to travel smart. It is best to travel with a guide or someone that you know that knows the island. We offer guides and drivers at the resort so that you can have the best and most fulfilling experience and travel safely.


Blue Skies Beach Resort

Experience Blue Skies Beach Resort, the new beach front adventure resort on Negril’s famous 7-mile white sand beach.