GoldenEye Hotel & Resort Rating: 4.5 Pearls

The property, which reopened in 2010 after an extensive $50 million renovation, includes stunning cottages and villas overlooking a private beach and lagoon, as well as two happening restaurants, two pools, a tree house spa, and an extensive roster of on-site activities. The rates might cause some to flinch, but those who can afford it will find little cause for complaint.

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Best Boutique Hotels in Jamaica (2 of 25)

 The property, which reopened in 2010 after an extensive $50 million renovation, includes stunning cottages and villas overlooking a private beach and lagoon, as well as two happening restaurants, two pools, a tree house spa, and an extensive roster of on-site activities. The rates might cause some to flinch, but those who can afford it will find little cause for complaint.
The 21-room GoldenEye is hands down Jamaica's hippest and most luxurious resort. It's also one of the island's most historic, as the former home of Ian Fleming, and the hideaway at which the author scribed all 14 of his James Bond novels. The property, which reopened in 2010 after an extensive $50 million renovation, includes stunning cottages and villas overlooking a private beach and lagoon, as well as two happening restaurants, two pools, a tree house spa, and an extensive roster of on-site activities. The rates might cause some to flinch, but those who can afford it will find little cause for complaint. The Geejam is made up of only five private, high-tech cottages on the lush foothills of Port Antonio. The resort is designed to offer privacy above all else -- there's no communal pool and no direct beach access, and guests often take all their meals in their individual cabins, each fenced off from the common pathways. The resort's setting is gorgeous, the service is extraordinary, and one of the Caribbean's most beautiful beaches -- Frenchman's Cove -- is only 10 minutes away. Fed by a nearby stream, the water is a mix of natural spring water and the profoundly warm sea. The rooms are modern on the inside, with stark white, minimalist décor, slate showers, Geejam's own high-quality herbal bath products, and the most high-tech entertainment system in Jamaica. The large Drum and Bass suite, attached to the recording studio, boasts a direct view of the sea from the terrace seen here. Even the smaller rooms have large, furnished, wrap-around terraces. A small, romantic resort that once drew Marilyn Monroe and Arthur Miller, the 60-room Jamaica Inn is about quiet luxury -- a single thatch-roofed bar, a small pool, and beautiful rooms with oversize terraces and soft, colonial décor. All guest rooms have only three true walls and a fourth wall made of screen-less, heavy wooden shutters, beautifully blurring the lines of indoors and outdoors as the shutters open to the sea or the lush landscape. This is a vacation home for many guests, so the warm staff feels like family. Housekeepers fashion the hand towel onto the beds into a swan each day. The Inn's combination library and game room have couches to sink into with a book or laptop and tables for an intense game of backgammon. Photos of the owners' family, friends, and famous guests line the walls and table tops of the room, and are far more interesting than any of the dusty paperbacks on the bookshelf. Arguably Jamaica's most romantic escape (for adults only), the Caves' 11 unique, private cottages and suites are tucked along lush garden paths and dramatic seaside cliffs. The resort was opened by a Rastafarian artist couple, Bertram and Greer-Ann Saulter, in 1994. Bertram designed each of the unique cottages and furniture (much of which is hand-carved), and Greer-Ann dreamt up the whimsical interiors, which are heavy on colorful batik prints and Jamaican crafts. The saltwater pool, private ocean-view Jacuzzi, intimate spa, and free yoga classes allow guests to relax and commune with nature. And free water-sports equipment, including kayaks and snorkel gear, is available on-site. This former coffee plantation nestled among the steep and winding hills of Jamaica’s famous Blue Mountain is a little oasis above the very un-resort-like city of Kingston. The resort offers plenty of intimacy and privacy, with just 12 cottages on more than 26 acres. It also has the features of a larger property: an expansive spa, a breezy restaurant and bar, a hilltop pool with panoramic vistas, lush gardens, and ample relaxation space. Rates might be considered a steal given the property's level of luxury -- if it weren’t for the inaccessible location and lack of beachfront. All of the rooms at Strawberry Hill have private balconies, four-poster beds, and lovely details such as hardwood floors and jalousie shutters. With just 30 hippy-chic cottages in secluded Treasure Beach, Jake's is a member of Island Outpost, Jamaica's trendiest hotel group. Guests come to unplug -- there's no phone, Internet, or TV in the cottages. Billing itself as the "chicest shack in the Caribbean" Jake's indeed feels like the backdrop to a summer-of-love fashion shoot. The arid climate here makes the property less green and lush than the north and east coasts, but giant aloe vera plants and colorful cacti give the landscape a natural beauty unique in Jamaica. The lush, laid-back Rockhouse creates a holistic haven -- gourmet dining, morning yoga, cliffside loungers, a premium spa, no kids under 12, and beautiful eco-appropriate design. The Rockhouse strives to be part of the community. Rooms come with socially conscious, locally made Starfish Oil soaps and bath products. All furniture is crafted from local timber. The Rockhouse restaurant has a casual atmosphere (no aristocratic dress code required) and locally focused cuisine (with veggie options), making it one of the best restaurants in the West End. Rooms are intentionally simple -- no TV, no Wi-Fi, and no radio. The four-post queen-size bed, veiled in a mosquito net (appropriately so), had high-quality sheets and a hand-stitched quilt from Cool Change. But the bed took up most of the space. With an intimate collection of 17 cottages split into 22 rooms, Tensing Pen has no TVs, phones, or radios in the rooms -- guests come to enjoy the breathtaking cliffs of Negril's west end. Tensing Pen's cottages are all unique, but they each contain simple furnishings and comfortable beds. Unlike neighboring resorts located on the cliffs, Tensing Pen allows kids. There's one open-air restaurant serving very good Jamaican fare. The restaurant is filled with tables and couches that overlook the pool and cliffs. Guests lounge with their laptops, linger over cocktails, and dine formally side-by-side here.
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