Ten Things to Do at Devon House Besides Eat Ice-Cream

Devon House in St. Andrew, Jamaica makes the best ice-cream I’ve ever had in my life. International critics agree too, ranking the Devon House I-Scream parlour as serving one of the world’s top 10 best ice-creams. I recently relocated to a next corner of this beautiful island so Devon House is no longer as accessible for me, but I do crave a delicious patty and ice-cream scoop set against the lovely antique theme of red brick and cobblestones ever so often. That being said, there’s so much more to Devon House than delicious ice-cream and being home to Jamaica’s first coloured millionaire. Devon House has evolved into an exciting village with gourmet à la carte restaurants, a relaxing day spa, quaint souvenir shops, a first-rate bakery, clothing stores and interesting delicatessens which slip below the radar when we brand Devon House solely as a mansion and award-winning ice cream parlour. Thus, this week I decided to share 10 other ways to enjoy this beautiful property.

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Peter Tosh Museum, Saint Andrew

Peter Tosh is a platinum-selling Grammy award winning artiste and is one of the most talented reggae musicians to emerge from Jamaica. He got his claim to fame from the Wailers, a trio which also consisted of Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer. Peter Tosh was born in 1944 in Westmoreland, Jamaica’s most western parish and his life was brought to a brutal abrupt end in 1987 after a home break-in and robbery-turned-murder. Tosh had a rough start with an unstable family background, shuffled around from relative to relative based on circumstances but his musical talent emerged early despite the upheavals. Tosh is a self-taught guitarist and keyboardist who got his first real taste of music and performing when he moved to Trench Town as a teenager and met his fellow band-mates in the early 1960s. He taught them how to play, and they dabbled in ska and rocksteady before finding their calling in reggae, infusing their tunes with spiritual and political messages from their newfound conversion to the Rastafari faith.

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Jamaica Rum Festival 2020: Recap & Highlights

Time sure flies when you’re having rum, I mean, fun. 2019 was the inaugural staging of the Jamaica Rum Festival and social media would not let me live it down that I missed it! The pictures looked epic and even my friends and colleagues were speaking about it for days. Thus, I eagerly anticipated the second staging, knowing that the event would be here to stay given all the success it had in its first showcasing and I was not left disappointed. The Caribbean produces some of the world’s best rums and our history is intricately intertwined with the spirit. Rum production dates back from the 17th century on plantations where my enslaved African ancestors toiled to produce this lovely liquor from sugarcane and its by-product molasses, and rum became the region’s chief export product after muscovado sugar.

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19 Times My Parish (St. Andrew) Left Me Awestruck

Hey guys! I hail from Jamaica’s capital city of Kingston, born unda di clock as we say– a colloquial expression which means one was born not too far from this Victorian-style 33-foot tall clocktower built in 1913! This clock marks the very centre of the parish capital, a crossroad between four major streets in Half-Way-Tree which was once the location of a large cotton tree and how the town got its name.

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Holywell, Saint Andrew

Located in the tropical mist forests of the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park (BJCMNP), Holywell (pronounced Hollywell) is a cool escape from Kingston’s heat. This 330-acres “park within a park” is blessed by the fragrance of fresh mountain air and pine trees, and at 900m (3,000 ft.) above sea level, the cool temperature allows Holywell’s ecosystem to support a wide variety of ferns, flowers, and trees which are rarely seen in other parts of Jamaica. Many Jamaican birds call this forest home, including all 30 of Jamaica’s endemic birds!

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A Jamaican Made Christmas Expo, Saint Andrew

A Jamaican Made Christmas is a two-day exposition put on by the National Baking Company at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, just in time for shoppers looking to purchase Christmas gifts before the season gets into full swing. This is its fourth staging and for 2018, it welcomed 100 exhibitors, giving 100 local entrepreneurs invaluable exposure.

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Hope Zoo, Saint Andrew

My last trip to the zoo was at least a decade ago and I’ve had an inexplicable hankering to visit since last year. Hope Zoo welcomed its first visitors in 1961 but inadequate funding, deterioration and a dwindling animal population led to a decline in public interest. This paved the way for private ownership and in 2011, the Hope Zoo Preservation Foundation (HZPF) took reins. Devising a model from local and international environment and wildlife preservation bodies, the Hope Zoo was transformed to tell the Jamaican story by showcasing local fauna alongside African macrovertebrates and American jungle species since these regions have had the greatest impact on Jamaica.

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Lime Tree Farm, Saint Andrew

Lime Tree Farm is an eco-friendly farm set in the delightful Blue Mountains 3,400 feet above sea level. Run by an affable couple Rodger and Tifony Bolton, visiting their farm is like visiting the home of friends where the air is cool and crisp, the views divine, the tranquility just what the doctor ordered and you’ll feel as if time moves a little slower here. Set in rural Saint Andrew, this is Coffee Country so you can bet that that’s the main crop.

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Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival, Saint Andrew

Jamaica’s Tourism Linkages Network through the Ministry of Tourism is on to something big with this one. The inaugural Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Festival is a three-day weekend affair with the main event taking place on Saturday March 24 at the cool historic military training centre of Newcastle in the Blue & John Crow Mountains National Park (BJCMNP).

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Trench Town Culture Yard, Saint Andrew

Jamaica’s capital city of Kingston pulsates to the beat of reggae music and its raunchier cousin, dancehall music. Both genres originated here so opportunities to enjoy and learn about their origins in Kingston are endless. Bob Marley is indisputably the world’s most famous Rastafarian and reggae’s most celebrated son. Born in the rural district of Nine Miles, St. Ann, Kingston can’t take credit for his birthplace but it can for his rise to fame. Bob Marley and his immediate family relocated to Trench Town, Kingston at age 12 in search of a better life.

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