Mayor of St. Ann’s Bay, Councillor Michael Belnavis, says Ocho Rios is poised to become the number-one destination for entertainment in Jamaica.
In an interview with JIS News, Mayor Belnavis said that the resort town, which boasts upgraded infrastructure and some of the “most enticing hot spots” on the north coast, has become a first choice for out-of-towners and holiday seekers.
“There is no other place in Jamaica that did better than Ocho Rios and by extension St. Ann over the long Easter weekend,” Mr. Belnavis said.
“Every major party was in town…all the beaches were full and people were doing a lot of business… it was just something to behold; from Ocho Rios Beach to Pearly Beach, Salem Beach in Runaway Bay, all the way down to Puerto Seco in Discovery Bay… it was simply amazing,” he said.
Mr. Belnavis, who is also Chairman of the National Cruise Council (NCC), noted that the Port Authority is currently carrying out additional infrastructure work to improve the town’s aesthetics, which will further enhance its appeal.
He said projections are that the town will continue to see more business from the cruise ships, with passengers visiting attractions such as Dunn’s River Falls, Dolphin Cove, Mystic Mountain and Chukka Cove.
“It is fair to say that we have an embarrassment of riches. We have, in addition to our wonderful beaches, some of the biggest and best attractions in the region, and not to mention our resorts. We have also started to build out on our infrastructure where we are putting in the fine restaurants to offer a true gastronomy experience,” he noted.
Mayor Belnavis told JIS News that the St. Ann Municipal Council has worked to reduce congestion in the town and improve the market experience.
“We still have a lot of work to do. We remain of the view that visitor satisfaction is the best form of advertisement, and both our locals and visitors from overseas should be able to spend their hard-earned money in a climate that is clean, friendly and conducive to business,” he said.