What a faboulous holiday!!! And the first to write a review on this property, how can this be??????? Windjammer is a spacious 4 bedroom property (all en suite) with a spectactular ocean front setting in Boscobel Jamaica, just about 10 minute drive from the Town of Ocho Rios. We arrived at the property to be greeted by the most wonderful, friendly staff you could ever wish to meet. Miss Jennifer (cook), Miss Tasha (house keeper) and Jahvan (groundsman, general duties and snorkelling extrordinaire!!!!). We were greeted on arrival with welcome cocktails, given a brief tour and given time to settle in, before our pre-arranged dinner was served.
You will not find sleek, contemporary fittings and furnishings at Windjammer, so if that is what you are looking for, this may not be the villa for you. The decor is in traditional Jamaican style, as pictured in the attached images by the owners of this listing. The property is kept meticulously clean by Miss Tasha who takes the upmost pride in her work. We could not fault how efficient she was and there was never a speck of dust in sight! Bedrooms and bathrooms were cleaned each and every day with fresh towels provided, and the beds were turned down every evening.
Food is prepared by Miss Jennifer, an extremely consiencious cook whose meals are prepared from the soul. Evening dishes included starters, mains and desserts at each sitting, and were pre-arranged and cooked according to the preferences of the party. Miss Jennifer is happy to provide a couple of options if there are taste differences in the group (i.e not all our party liked fish, so chicken was offered as an alternative for those guests). Whilst the staff are keen for you to try traditional Jamaican food (and rightly so, why go somewhere and not eat the local food?) we were also offered the most amazing home cooked peppered steak, fried chicken, lobster,and prawns. Breakfast consisted of 3 courses and it took a couple of days to get used to the sheer amount of food prepared. Miss Jennifer is keen to give you food that nourishes the body and gives you strength during your stay and you certainly were never left hungry during meal times. Lunch generally consisted of lighter meals, patties, hot dogs, fresh salads sandwiches etc. Shopping for food is done by Miss Jennifer at the supermarket, local market stalls and road side fare (fruit/vegetables), Jamaicans are very keen to support local trade. She is happy to go alone, by chartered Taxi, or you are more than welcome to go with her if you wish. The first evening bill is settled at breakfast the following morning, then further meals are planned and money given over to cover the cost of food and transportation. Miss Jennifer keeps very tight records of all costings and you can be rest assured your money is in very safe and trustworthy hands.
The property itself is located on the sea front with around 50 steps down to the ocean. there is no beach but this was more than compensated for by the most amazing snorkelling opportunites. We were escorted out to the reef almost daily by Jahvan who knows the reef like the back of his hand, beautiful fish, corals, sting ray, lobster and puffer fish were seen vertually on a daily basis. On most days we would go out to the reef in the morning and then after lunch snorkel round the coast line (in around 5 minutes) to a local man made beach/bar for a couple of Red Stripe beers and domino's, then snorkel back in time for evening dinner.
Sunbathing by the lovely pool and snorkelling aside, the staff were very helpful in recommending day trips out to see the sights of Jamaica. We can recommend Firefly, the Jamaican home of English actor Noel Coward. Though now left to the Jamaican National Trust, the guide at the property told us the story of the actor's life, showed us his resting place and we saw the most breathing taking views of the ocean that I have ever seen. We also went to Dunn's River Falls, a must do trip, but be warned. It is trickly to climb the waterfall, quite difficult underfoot and really not suitable for young children. If excursions are not your thing, you can always visit one or two of the local bars? not touristy at all as they are where the locals go. Staying in this property means you are not penned into a 5 star resort which you do not want (or told not) to leave! You are free (and very safe) to come and go as you please! Just be sensible as you would at home.
With so many positives, it is only fair to mention some points which some may consider to be significant when planning their trip. Whilst the back of the property ocean fronted, a busy road runs right through the front of the villa. Road traffic in Jamaica like to use their horns (alot) and the lorries are quite noisy in particular. Whilst you can only really hear the lorries (not so many) when out by the pool, one of the quests with a front room had difficulty in sleeping with the noise. However, 3 children occupied the other front facing room, and it did not affect their sleep in the slightest so this is definately worth considering when choosing sleeping arrangements. The two rooms at the back didn't seem to really hear much of the road traffic and the guests sleeping in these rooms slept well. Also, as part of security there are two dogs at this property. We didn't see them much, but we could hear them sometimes early in the morning. However, they were only doing their job so given a choice of a big secure hotel complex which most people never leave, and a private villa with a couple of guard dogs, I know which one I would choose and it would be Windjammer every time.
So...... summing up this holiday, it was amazing. Made so special by the people who work here. The owners should be very proud and pleased to have such wonderful attentive staff who are proud of Windjammer and go out of their way to give the guests wonderful memories and a holiday of a lifetime.
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