Set amid wide lawns high atop a hill 5km east of Oracabessa and 5km west of Port Maria, Firefly was the home of Sir Noël Coward, the English playwright, songwriter, actor and wit, who was preceded at this site by the notorious pirate Sir Henry Morgan. When he died in 1973, Coward left the estate to his partner Graham Payn, who donated it to the nation.
Your guide will lead you to Coward’s art studio, where he was schooled in oil painting by Winston Churchill. The studio displays Coward’s original paintings and photographs of himself and a coterie of famous friends. The drawing room, with the table still laid, was used to entertain such guests as the Queen Mother, Sophia Loren and Audrey Hepburn. The upper lounge features a glassless window that offers one of the most stunning coastal vistas in all Jamaica. The view takes in Port Maria Bay and the coastline further west. Contrary to popular opinion, Coward didn’t write his famous song ‘A Room with a View’ here (it was written in Hawaii in 1928).
Coward lies buried beneath a plain white marble slab on the wide lawns where he entertained many illustrious stars of the stage and screen. A dance floor nearby covers his old pool – the house is now used as an exclusive venue for society weddings.