If you’re looking for a relaxing honeymoon destination with a little bit of spice, you could do worse than the land that gave us reggae music and jerk cuisine. Jamaica has all that and more. And Montego Bay’s Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa Resort, Rose Hall adds a few extra touches—deluxe accommodations and first-class service, to name just two.
When you get to the hotel, forget unpacking and head straight for your room’s private balcony. The views of the Caribbean Sea and the sounds of the waves let you know those Bob Marley lyrics are true: every little thing is going to be all right.
Once you’ve settled in, it’s time for the first meal of your Jamaican journey. Room service, of course, is always a romantic option. But the Ritz-Carlton has a few others as well. For a casual environment, Mangos is your best bet. And Horizon is a great choice if something more elegant sounds good. But dinner at the White Witch restaurant, which sits on a hilltop at the resort’s 18-hole championship golf course, might be the most romantic of all. Sip cocktails on the terrace as the sun sets and try a variety of plates, from Red Stripe-braised pork belly to grilled lobster and seared scallops. For dessert, share the mandarin cheesecake or linger over another cocktail. Either way, the evening’s end will be a sweet one.
You could take the rest of your stay in a few different directions. A laid-back afternoon might include lounging in a private cabana on the beach while reading the latest mystery novel. Or it could entail a day at the spa, where signature treatments include the Jamaican coffee body scrub and the sugarcane body polish. For a little more togetherness, opt for the Rose Hall Ritual for Two.
The more spirited types can go sailing or scuba diving or take a guided horseback ride through the mountains followed by lunch at the Reggae Jerk Center. And the truly adventurous can sign up for one of the Jerk Center’s cooking classes.
There are plenty of attractions to enjoy off the resort grounds as well. Rafting on the Martha Brae River, for instance, includes a leisurely ride on a bamboo raft built for two. As you stream down the serene waters, the raft captain regales you with stories about his homeland. He will also gladly pull over if you want to visit the vendors selling cold beers from the banks of the river. But beware the locals bearing “gifts.” Those handmade trinkets are actually merchandise, and they will cost you.
While you’re being touristy, take a nighttime tour of the Rose Hall Great House. The supposedly haunted former home of White Witch Annie Palmer sits on a former sugar plantation, and the tour includes tales of murder, betrayal, and black magic. Eerie, yes, but it’s all in good fun. So just grab your honey’s hand and don’t worry about a thing.