A Jamaican Family Owned hotel with a difference
Against the beautiful backdrop of Montego Bay’s coastline is the family-owned business, SeaGarden Beach Resort. The local family bought the property in 1986 and operated it as Club Paradise until the mid 1990s when it was renamed SeaGarden Beach Resort. The resort closed at the end of the 1990s and recently reopened on December 20, 2013.
Given that it is a legitimate five minutes from Sangster International Airport, it has become a favourite for many tourists, especially those in north America. “We have a lot of persons coming from Canada based on relationships we have built over the years, ” shared Tricia-Ann Bicarie, Director of Sales and Marketing.
Entering the semi-circle driveway of the hotel, guests are met with a verdant garden to the left, which is complemented by a clean environment. Once the guest has stopped the bellman is on constant look out and is quick to assist with luggages as well as showing the driver where the concealed entrance to the additional parking is.
From a size perspective, with 150 rooms this is more of a small hotel which is immediately obvious based on the intimate layout of the lobby area. However the 392,040 sq ft property is packed with amenities for all. Beyond the obvious like the pool, the snack counter and the beach bar, there are a host of other facilities nestled in every corner.
To the rear of the property are two full-size tennis courts, where guest are usually playing in the early morning hours. For those who prefer a more structured way to exercise, the gym is behind the pool bar. Exiting the gym, there is a game room immediately facing guests. Its equipped with a pool table, a ‘Pop-a-Shot’ arcade basketball game and other things teens will love to do.
For the foodie lovers there is the Jasmine Dining Room which is the main restaurant and can seat up to 160 persons. It serves breakfast, lunch and dinner in a buffet style with an abundance of savory food from all the essential food groups. If a guest miss the time period for these meals, the option to visit the Beach bar and grill is always there up to 1 am.
With all this said, the hidden treasure where dining is concerned, is on the hotel’s private beach which is located across the street. It is enclosed with a security post at the entrance, once you have past this point, ask the bartender for the Jerk Chicken special. Afterwards take your meal to the boardwalk, where you have a perfect view of the caribbean ocean. There will also be countless opportunities to see the plane descending as they prepare to land.
The rooms are cozy and the walls are extremely sturdy, this means that there is no vibration when the planes pass. This is something that many hotels in the vicinity should take note of. It's one of the most annoying things when you are trying to sleep and the walls keep shaking. There is also a therapeutic effect of hearing the waves crash against the parameter walls across the street.
“Each room is tastefully furnished with either one King Bed or two Double Beds. Complementary wifi access keeps you connected throughout the resort and cable channels are offered for your additional entertainment. An iron and iron board are also included,” disclosed Bicarie.
She continued to disclose about the rates of the hotel. “Our basic room is the standard room that starts at US$291 per room per night double occupancy. However, we have discounts available for locals and run social media and direct book promotions that sometimes has rates as low as US$92.00 per person per night.”
Bicarie was also quick to point out that the hotel is very active on social media where persons can look for offers. “It’s a good idea to follow us on facebook, instagram, twitter or chat with us online on our website seagardenjamaica.com to grab these deals when they pop-up. We also have Deluxe Garden/Pool View and Deluxe Ocean View rooms along with suites and Family Rooms.”
The future and charity
Bicarie stated that the hotel has a lot of potential to accomplish so much more but being family operated there are limitations that they must be mindful of. “Immediate access to funding for expansions is to an extent a constraint. We are constantly improving our product and visitors will notice these changes each year they return, but this comes at a significant investment and we are not always able to roll-out our projects as fast as we would want to as we must first earn the funds that are required to reinvest in our property,” disclosed Bicarie.
Despite not having robust resources, the hotel takes pride in giving back to the community. “Each summer the resort participates in a number of internship and mentoring programmes. We also find a way to treat orphans from homes that work closely with the Child Development Agency. Another thing we have consistently done is accomodate the community churches and nonprofit organizations by providing meals and a venue for fundraising projects,” shared Bicarie
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org , social media: seagardenjamaica