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Emerald View Resort 3.0

Montego Bay, Jamaica

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Charming bed-and-breakfast with an authentic Jamaican feel 
  • Welcoming host who wants guests to experience the “real Jamaica” 
  • Astounding ocean views from nearly every room on the property 
  • Quiet pool with a few lounge chairs and nearby hammocks 
  • Bright, colorful rooms have island-inspired decor and some balconies
  • Small sundries and souvenir shop 
  • Owner can recommend and arrange excursions for guests 
  • Free rides to local restaurants for dinner 
  • Free Wi-Fi in the house’s main living space  

Cons

  • Not within walking distance of the beach  
  • Property is a little worn, and room decor is slightly dated  
  • Guests have to pre-order breakfast in the morning if they want it 
  • No full restaurant, bar, or in-room Wi-Fi 

Bottom Line

Emerald View Resort has an authentic feel led by the Jamaican-born owner, Jennifer, who welcomes guests like family into her home, and aims to give them a taste of her native country. Housed in a hilltop mansion, the three-pearl bed-and-breakfast offers stunning views of the ocean from nearly all of the 17 rooms. Though decor is a bit dated, rooms have a colorful, island-inspired look. Emerald View has a pool, but most guests spend their days off property exploring Montego Bay and the surrounding area. Jennifer can arrange excursions and tours for guests, and she also offers free rides to local restaurants at dinner time. Guests have to request and pay for breakfast at Emerald View -- otherwise it’s not served. Travelers looking for a true bed-and-breakfat experience might prefer the pricier Polkerris Bed and Breakfast, which serves excellent breakfast, has two pools, and nicer decor in a similar hilltop setting. 

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Scene

An authentic Jamaican bed-and-breakfast

When Emerald View’s Jamaican-born owner, Jennifer, returned to her home country for the first time after living in the United States, she stayed in one of Montego Bay’s all-inclusive resorts. She was disappointed to find that the hotel lacked any signs of Jamaican culture, and felt as though she hadn’t even really left south Florida. This is how Emerald View was born. Determined to offer guests a true Jamaican experience, Jennifer created a homey bed-and-breakfast with island-inspired accents throughout. Bold colors and ocean views are prominently featured. The decor is a little dated, and rooms are somewhat shabby -- but that’s the point -- staying with Jennifer feels like staying at your Jamaican aunt’s house. The majority of guests at Emerald View are couples, though it’s ideal for families and solo travelers as well. Travelers come from all over the world, and Jennifer says that sometimes, six continents are represented at once.

Location

High on a hill in Greenwood, about 20 minutes from Montego Bay 

Emerald View Resort is located 20 minutes from Montego Bay, in a residential neighborhood known as Greenwood. The bed-and-breakfast is situated on a quiet, residential hilltop that offers stunning views of the ocean, but it can be difficult to reach without an SUV. Emerald View is approximately 22 minutes from Sangster International Airport, and about 15 minutes from the cruise ship pier in Falmouth.    

Rooms

Colorful, if dated, rooms with a homey feel -- some with balconies

Painted in shades of lime green, sunshine yellow, and orange Creamsicle, rooms at Emerald View are anything but dull. Their mismatched furniture and patterned valences give them an eclectic, homey look. Each room is a bit different in size, style, and layout -- even rooms belonging to the same category can look completely different from one another. Guests basically have two options when it comes to room type: ocean or garden view. Ocean view rooms have beautiful views of the water, and some have outdoor balconies. Garden view rooms overlook the property’s front entrance and driveway. Rooms are located on three different levels of the house. Guests with limited mobility should request a room on the entry level, since there is no elevator. All rooms are equipped with air conditioners, flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and ironing equipment. Wi-Fi isn't available in the rooms. Bathrooms, like bedrooms, have a dated look to them, with mismatched tiles and beveled shower doors -- some etched with flowers and birds. But, they are equipped with all the necessities, like good water pressure and temperature control. Hairdryers and soap are provided.

Features

A small pool, and breakfast by request only 

At most bed-and-breakfasts, the morning meal is an eagerly anticipated event. But at Emerald View, guests have to order and pay extra for breakfast if they want it, which seems like a strange practice. Breakfast is an additional fee, but there’s free coffee in the morning -- if you request to have it made. The breakfast menu consists of traditional Jamaican specialities like ackee and saltfish, mackerel rundown, and callaloo and fried dumplings. Guests can request to have lunch and dinner at Emerald View, but advanced notice is required. At night, Jennifer (the owner) offers free round-trip transportation to a few local restaurants on the beach, so the majority of guests eat dinner off-property. 

Emerald View has a nice pool with awesome ocean views. The pool is surrounded by a patio set with a few lounge chairs, and is a great place to unwind at the end of the day. Next to the pool is a grassy hill, where hammocks are strung between the palm trees.  

The main floor of the house has two large living spaces and is the only place on the property where guests can access the free Wi-Fi. The first living room is located next to the lobby, and has a piano and a small seating area. It’s a quiet space, so guests come here to read or play the piano. Behind the lobby is a larger living room with multiple couches and a flat-screen TV. Jennifer’s young daughter often hangs around and watches cartoons in this room. Next to the TV room is a small shop where Jennifer sells things like souvenirs, sunscreen, beer, rum, and bottled water. Jennifer is happy to arrange tours and activities for guests to take part in during their stay. She even conducts some of the tours herself. Guests can enquire about times and prices in the lobby.  

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Address

261 Poinciana Drive, Greenwood, Montego Bay, Caribbean

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