Jamaica is a 3 hour flight from Houston which is an ideal flying time. Our children came from Seattle, WA, Saratoga Springs NY, and Fargo ND. with their children making 14 in all with ages 78 down to 16. We stayed 9 days over Christmas holiday and it could not have been a better place for a family reunion and "grand gathering". Everyone had a great time doing what was at the villa. There was no reason to leave the villa except for scuba diving, horseback riding in the ocean, and shopping in Ocho Rios. There are many things to do on the grounds which have been previously mentioned and we found to be absolutely true. Most of us love the water having lived in Hawaii for 40 years and so we took an immediate liking to the property beach, snorkeling, paddle board or using the kayaks. The exercise room is well equipped and if squash, racket ball or ping pong is to your liking the gym is excellent. The local scuba company came to the villa to give us our lesson in the pool which was great. The 6 hole putting green was fun. Cocktails on the point with the sunset was a must each night. The rooms were very comfortable and easily accommodated 14. They are indeed spacious, nice and with excellent views. The A/C worked fine. The lower level bedroom is very nicely laid out for someone with a disability. There is a ramp down to it from the central area and the shower is a "roll' in. Food was fantastic. Patrick and assistant cooked 3 magnificent meals each day responding to our crazy requests. Christmas dinner was fantastic and served on the point with a roaring bond fire that Arthur expertly built. It seemed like we ate all over the property in different settings. Eating was great fun. The housekeeping staff kept our rooms always neat and tidy. Sean and Gregory did just about everything to make us comfortable. Sean drove us one day to do shopping and Gregory was always able to come up with different cocktails at anytime of the day. It was fun to interact with all the friendly staff and especially those two ambassadors of fun. Gregory is not a good poker player:) The villa is safe and gated in 2 places. Having the internet was great and a computer and work station even better for those compulsive enough to keep checking work. If you want to get your family together to know each other again while letting them enjoy "heaven on earth and being one with the sea, then this is the place for you.
We visited Fortland's Point with our extended family, including 4 children ranging from 9 months to 6 years. We found it to be an ideal villa for families. The house layout/bedrooms, grounds, activities, and staff combined to create a most relaxing experience for groups with small children. It was like having a small resort just to yourself. I can't imagine a better property for having a truly relaxing experience with small children.
I personally left the property only once to explore the nearby coastline. Despite 11 days on property there was always plenty to do... great snorkeling with active reefs just off the beach, paddleboards, kayaks, the pool. We hired an amazing yoga instructor (Sheila Pinto) to give us private yoga classes in the beach pavilion. Having everything right on site meant I could enjoy the activities while my small children napped.
For the kids there is a small swingset/slide, large yard with soccer/football goals, cannons to climb, board games, and of course the pool & beach. For others that want to leave the property, hiring a driver for the week allowed people to go to nearby markets & activities in Ocho Rios.
The staff was extremely accommodating & great with our kids. I would also consider the villa to be handicapped accessible, with one bedroom accessible by wheelchair (not sure how the bath is). There is a house dog, which we hardly noticed at all. One kid accidentally stepped on it and it just moved further under the couch. While family-friendly was key for me, we also had young, childless couples as part of our group, who also had a wonderful time. The house & property are large enough to "escape" without actually leaving the grounds.
Things that really exceeded our expectations were the quality of the snorkeling, the quality of the private beach (small, but picturesque & lovely), and the amazing private yoga instructor. There are also a variety of places to dine on the property (we ate in 5 different locations...2 indoors and 3 outdoors).
The only downsides to the villa I found was that some of the things shown in the pictures were not available (hammocks, gym equipment). Additionally, while the chef is good & very accommodating, I would not describe the meals as gourmet (note: my standards for gourmet are quite high). The pools/beaches are not closed off, so it is necessary to watch young children very carefully.
It is about 3 hours from Kingston airport and 1hr from Montego Bay.
|How easy was it to book the property?||Overall condition of the property|
|Bedding & mattresses||Bathroom cleanliness|
|Other facilities & amenities||Service|
|People with disabilities||Older travelers|
|Families with young children||Large groups|