Sun | Feb 16, 2020

Room bookings going well for Rebel Salute 2020

Published:Wednesday | January 15, 2020 | 12:12 AMCarl Gilchrist/Gleaner Writer
The Jewel Dunn’s River, many-time sponsor of Rebel Salute.
The Jewel Dunn’s River, many-time sponsor of Rebel Salute.

While the norm is for a spike in bookings as the date draws closer to the event, the accommodation sector in St Ann is already hailing the impact that Rebel Salute is having on business.

Last Friday, chairperson for the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) Ocho Rios Runaway Bay Chapter, Vana Taylor, told The Gleaner that, “Everything is going well, bookings are on stream as usual for it. Everything is set for another bumper event, hopefully the best year, because every year it gets better.”

Taylor said members of the JHTA and also the Jamaica Association of Villas and Apartments (JAVA) are seeing increased bookings for the period because of Rebel Salute.

Airbnb hosts in St Ann are also said to be seeing an upswing in bookings. While hosts are typically inaccessible via telephone, one person who operates a property at Richmond Estate, located just a few hundred metres from the show venue, said operators usually see an increase in bookings during the period of Rebel Salute.

“Based on trend, you’d be lucky if you can find anywhere at this time. My certain knowledge is that all the villas have been booked out already,” he disclosed, referring specifically to villas at Richmond Estate.

Leopold Williams, owner of Seacrest Beach Hotel in Priory, located next door to the venue of the event, also confirmed that bookings are going well at his property.

“It’s coming on, maybe about 60 per cent. You always have the last-minute rush, some people don’t book until two days before so next [this] week we’ll have everybody. But everything looks good,” Williams outlined.

The Jewel Resorts brand, which has sponsored Rebel Salute since it was staged in St Ann for the first time, back in 2013, is another entity benefiting from increased room demand because of the festival.

Ann-Marie Goffe-Pryce, general manager at Jewel Dunn’s River, confirmed that the hotel was getting bookings from patrons attending the festival, even as the extent was not disclosed.

And while sister property Jewel Paradise Cove has been booked solid otherwise, the brand’s third property in St Ann, Jewel Runaway Bay, is expected to host patrons to the event also.

Rebel Salute takes place at Grizzly’s Plantation Village on January 17 and 18.