"Nirvana" by Sheila Cull, Published at Go World Travel

Nirvana features charming beachfront cottages.

No neon signs or advertising will draw your attention to Nirvana on the Beach. You could walk right past the resort without noticing the unpretentious driveway that leads into a glorious tropical garden on Jamaica’s famed Negril Beach.

Palm fringed, with silky soft, powder-white sand, Negril Beach stretches for about 4 miles (6.4 km) on the western tip of this Caribbean island. Nirvana, in the center of Negril Beach, is caressed by warm turquoise waters.

Warm Caribbean waters caress Jamaica’s Negril Beach. Close your eyes and picture yourself surrounded by lush vegetation, fruit trees and a rainbow of flora, such as hibiscus, lilies, torch gingers, jade vines and orchids. The heady smells of the exotic gardens captivate you like a cool breeze on a hot day. You hear songbirds and the rhythm of the ocean waves.

My first morning at Nirvana, I woke up to the scent of night-blooming jasmine drifting in my window. The ceiling fan offered a refreshing breeze, and I picked up a different scent, sea air. My comfortable room featured neutral colors and a sense of relaxed privacy.

A rural New York couple, Lonnie and Stanley Gottlieb discovered Negril Beach decades ago when the free-spirited hippie generation appreciated the laidback lifestyle the Negril area offers. They built Nirvana on a 1.5 acre (6,070 m²) plot of beachfront jungle in the mid 1980s.

The eight-unit guest property is inspired by nature. Beachfront cottages have two or three bedrooms and spacious living/dining rooms. Furnishings are simple and unpretentious, yet charming, with wicker chairs and plantation blinds. Prices start at US$ 180 per night for two people.

All units are fully screened, and there are ceiling fans in every room. Kitchens are fully equipped. Daily maid and cooking service for one meal per day is included in the cottage rates. Guests provide all groceries needed for meal preparation.

Perhaps I should have followed my neighbor’s menu. As I woke up from my midday nap in a hammock beneath a coconut palm, a delicious smell wafted through the courtyard. “What's that?” I asked TuTu, staff member and my new friend, who happened by at that moment.

“Why Sheila, that smell there is brown stew chicken simmering in a rich gravy.” At that, my stomach growled loudly and we both laughed. Jamaican cooking never disappoints. I decided to have the same dish prepared for me the next day.

Continued: Jamaican Hideaway: Nirvana on the Beach
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