These Classic Jamaica Hotels Are Inspiring a New Generation of Creative Visitors

Photo: Courtesy of GoldenEye

Cinema loves Jamaica, after all: beyond Bond, cult films shot on the island like Countryman or The Harder They Come continue to resonate. And so does fashion. The style captured in these films can be found on the mood boards of designers like Wales Bonner and the New York-based fashion brand Diotima, who recently shot their campaign at GoldenEye, styled by Marika-Ella Ames. (Both the brand’s designer Rachel Scott and Ames are heavily influenced by their Jamaican heritage.) “Jamaica provides the opportunity to slow down, reset, and absorb the simple beauties of life that we creatives tend to overlook in major cities,” Ames says.

“The luxury hotels on the island have such rich, incredible history around them,” the stylist continues. “[They] have done an incredible job of preserving and enriching the elements of nature, original imagery, and Jamaican character throughout their properties.” There’s a clear link here, between the evident moment Jamaica is having, and the desire to see—or be seen at—these properties. So too was Burberry’s latest, hottest campaign, lensed by Tyrone LeBon, was shot at both GoldenEye and Geejam. (The Burberry images dropped while we were staying at the latter, much to the excitement of staff and locals involved.)

Opened in 2008 by music industry insiders Jon Baker and Steve Beaver, Geejam is a multi-faceted property. Contemporary bungalows and freshly refurbished rooms in the rainforest above Port Antonio can be reached by stairs from the intimate private beach. For musicians, Geejam’s USP is its beloved recording studio, where Alicia Keys wrote Girl on Fire and Amy Winehouse laid down Back to Black. Harry Styles supposedly never wanted to leave, and when The Rolling Stones occupied the space… well, Geejam is too discreet for us mere mortals to ever know. Just think of the stories those studio walls could tell.

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