By Susie Reese
The time has finally arrived! Palace Resorts’ newest addition to its award-winning brand opens this July, and with a $50 million renovation to the original property, Moon Palace Jamaica Grande promises to be a world-class resort and a fitting first venture for Palace outside of Mexico. They’ve even invited Jamaica-native and Grammy-winning artist Shaggy to perform at their opening concert.
Live the Palace Life
“I live in Jamaica, and from time to time I get the opportunity to perform in my hometown,” Shaggy tells OTG. “I am very excited and I’m sure it will be a great experience to headline the Grand Opening of Moon Palace Jamaica Grande. I can’t wait to play for my fans and check out the new property.
If possible, Shaggy’s going to soak in some moon rays.
“I am interested to see how Moon Palace Jamaica Grande looks after the renovation and experience everything it has to offer,” he says. “Time providing, I will try to squeeze in some rest and relaxation.
The property has undergone an extensive enhancement with the expertise of cutting-edge designer Francois Frossard, transforming the once Sunset Jamaica Grande to the debonair Moon Palace Jamaica Grande. To provide The Palace Life travelers expect, the resort now offers lavish swimming pools, five world-class restaurants, a FlowRider® Double wave simulator (the first in Jamaica and the Caribbean), a Wired Teens Lounge, a dolphin habitat, “The Playroom,” Noir nightclub and other entertainment, and rejuvenating facilities that you expect from a Palace resort.
One of the most anticipated spots of the resort, the Awe Spa, puts other spas on Jamaica to shame.
“I am simply awed by the Awe Spa,” Clifton Reader, general manager of the resort, admits. “The sheer size makes it one of the largest in the Caribbean. The range of services is spectacular and the signature pools in the center of the spa is truly a sight to behold.”
However, Reader’s favorite place on property isn’t one of Moon Palace’s entertainment venues. “The most wonderful spot at Moon Palace Jamaica Grande is the breathtaking view as you enter the lobby overlooking the azure waters of the warm Caribbean Sea.
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Moon Palace Jamaica Grande prides itself on its rich legacy. The restaurants—signature Teppanyaki, seafood and a steakhouse—were built on the very spot where Sean Connery landed his helicopter in the first James Bond movie, “Dr. No.”
Also, the resort shares a name with Palace’s signature property in Cancun, Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort. “The Moon Palace brand has become synonymous with high-quality product, signature spas, world-class entertainment and the highest standards of guest satisfaction,” Reader says. “To be associated with such a brand is an honor which will surely enhance Jamaica’s tourism product as well as the training and development of local talents.”
The resort also offers Palace Resorts’ extensive Resort Credit promotion. Guests who book a stay of five nights or more at any of the brand’s seven oceanfront properties can take advantage of a $1,500 Resort Credit. These credits can be applied toward a wide variety of amenities and experiences, including delicious dining, inspiring treatments, and nightly entertainment.
According to Reader, “Palace Resorts offers a truly exceptional experience for travelers. The unparalleled level of service and comfort found at each property makes Palace Resorts a leading provider of world-class resort vacations.”
The Jamaican Experience
Palace Resorts chose Jamaica as their first Caribbean destination because of its increased popularity in recent years.
“As the third largest English speaking country in the Caribbean with close proximity and strong air connectivity to the United States, the destination has reported a steady increase in tourism arrivals in 2014 and continues captures the hearts and attention of travelers from around the world,” Reader points out.
But one of the best features of the resort is its attentive and professional staff.
“The natural warmth of the Jamaican people mixed with the extensive training both locally and in Cancun of our staff brings a level of service unmatched at any other resort in Jamaica,” Reader says.
The property’s prime location in the center of Ocho Rios, just 10 minutes away from Jamaica’s major attractions such as the famous Dunn’s River Falls and Mystic Mountain, make it an automatic win for many travelers, but Palace Resorts is also hoping to court guests of the Sunset Jamaica Grande and the Renaissance Jamaica Grande back to the property to try out the revitalized resort.
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Shaggy’s Travel Favorites
You continue to tour in South American and European markets. What is one of your favorite places to play?
I don’t have one specific place I love to perform. Every place is special to me in its own way. I love high energy, so if the show has that, it’s my favorite place to be until the next one. I do tend to enjoy playing in those two markets a lot!
Your next international tour is in Australia. Have you traveled there before?
We have been fortunate to tour Australia multiple times throughout the country. If I had to pick what cities that I enjoy the most, I’d say, Sydney, Perth, Gold Coast, and Melbourne.
Since you travel for work, do you travel for leisure? Do you have a favorite resort? A favorite vacation drink?
I tend to travel for leisure whenever I’m not working, so not as much as I like due to being a workaholic. I like spending time in Jamaica on the Rio Grande. Maybe Moon Palace will be added to my list of favorite resorts after my big show in May. My favorite drink is CocoYac, a coconut flavored Cognac.
Where haven’t you played yet that you’d like to?
I have not played Belize yet and cannot wait to get there!
About Susie Reese
Susie Reese is a copywriter for FC USA Artworks. She loves to travel (you know it!) and has ventured extensively across North America. She enjoys short walks on the beach and comic cons. She writes On the Go: A Magazine for Travelers and on her free-time, comics and short stories.
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