Replies: 3 - Last Post: Feb 20, 2013 11:37 AM Last Post By: nyammy
Feb 12, 2013 2:47 PM
traveler's alertI want to post a caution about My Time 'n Place (listing is http://www.lonelyplanet.com/jamaica/northern-jamaica/glistening-waters/hotels/time-n-place). I made a reservation and paid a deposit based on Lonely Planet's recommendation of it the Top Choice in the area. However, after looking over the place on arrival, my friend and I turned around and left, giving up the deposit rather than stay there.
The property no longer looks as it does in the photos on its own web site, much less like the photos of Similar Places that come up with the Lonely Plan listing. In fairness, the Jamaican driver who took me and my friend to the property thought that it might have been damaged by a hurricane, as broken lumber and trash lay in piles between the cottages and the beach and practically under the cottage assigned to us. Not a good sign that it had not been picked up long after the hurricane came through.
Be that as it may, we did not feel safe at My Time 'n Place for a number of reasons. There were wide cracks between floor boards where mosquitoes could get in. The flimsy door would not have kept any intruder out--a concern because of the obvious poverty surrounding the encampment and the rough look of the people inside it. The Jamaican driver pointed out a naked couple walking on the posted-private beach. Obviously opinions differ about nude beaches in general. The driver (someone we knew and trusted) saw it as a sign of tolerance for disorderly conduct by local norms. If you were staying there without a car, you would have very few options in case of trouble.
Feb 13, 2013 5:54 PM
1I've never been to this particular place and have no interest in defending it. I'll take your word for it that the property was run down and not in rentable condition when you visited, and that the owners/managers are failing to adequately monitor their property.
On the other hand, I have been to the general area, and I am trying to decipher what you mean by "obvious poverty" and by saying that you did not feel safe. Did you end up staying overnight there? Did anybody actually bother, harm, or steal from you? Or was it more just that you felt uncomfortable there?
To be honest, I have a hard time believing that this particular venue just happens to be located in the midst of dangerous slums. It is not uncommon along that part of the north coast to see very modest local housing- yes, probably occupied by people who live below the poverty line- alongside all manner of hotels, tourist cottages, and villas. It is also quite common for there to be a tourist beach, or private beach, or tourist accommodation, adjacent to a scruffier-looking "fisherman's beach." The two often exist in symbiosis.
I really don't mean to doubt you, but there is a pervasive myth in some circles that the tourist is not safe sleeping in Jamaica unless there is concrete and barbed wire separating them from the matrix of crime, chaos, and poverty outside the compound, and this has not been borne out by my own experiences there.
Feb 15, 2013 5:11 PM
Feb 20, 2013 11:37 AM
3Have to agree with Damion and Weaver here.
I have had many friends stay at Time and Place and only offer great feedback, enough so that it has been on my personal bucket list of a place to go.
I can think of nowhere in Jamaica where you will not have "rough look of the people" - just another way of saying poor, which unless you are behind a gated all inclusive you will see in Jamaica. Poor doesn't mean dangerous. I hope the OP ended up enjoying Jamaica, but with that type of unwarranted fear I doubt they were able to truly experience the real Jamaica or even give it a chance.
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