Annandale Great House, St. Ann
The Road to Annandale
The final stop on the Georgian Society tour is Annandale Great House, located outside the village of Epworth, near Ocho Rios. I was quite excited about this one since I was told that my grandfather once worked on the property.
Built in 1760, the Great House commands breathtaking views of the mountains. We found the entrance and our able driver maneuvered the bus through the main gate. I was giddy with excitement and couldn’t wait to get there … perhaps that was why I began to feel that we had been driving for such a long time that we were no longer in St. Ann. It's a HUGE property, about 600 acres.
Finally I was able to get a glimpse but before we could tour the house an even more urgent matter had to be dealt with. LUNCH! I kid you not, I would WALK back there just for more of that delicious chicken they served up at the onsite restaurant.
Though I was quite full and feeling an onset of fatigue, I decided to walk it off and see if I could get some shots of the Great House before going inside. Ooo la la what a sight! It reminded me of Rose Hall Great house in St. James and had that unmistakable symmetry that I’ve grown to appreciate. I ran around, dodging manure so I could see as much as I could.
This façade was a mystery to me. It felt as if it wanted to be symmetrical and even tricked me at one point. I am still quite drawn to that line of axis. I absolutely love the window treatment
There was one main axis that linked the entrances and led to the outdoor kitchen (which still functions – seeing it was well worth the smoke inhalation). Enjoy the photos below.
If you missed my previous blog posts -- Part 1 and Part 2 - just scroll down the page to read them all.
Written by Latoya Gail, Georgian Society member and owner of Ayo Designs in St. Ann.
Continuing my trek with the Georgian Society of Jamaica -- we went far into the hills to get to the second Great House. My anticipation increased when I started to glimpse parts of it and I began to wonder just what I would see.
The Geddes House
If ever there was a house that confused, intrigued and fascinated me the most, this would definitely be it. The house is a mystery in and of itself. I was quite perplexed with the layout and even now I can’t figure out where the ‘main entrance’ is.
Welcome to Geddes Great House, located in Brittonville in the “garden parish”. It was built by Rev Geddes in 1792 and stands 1972 ft above sea level. The Great House survived intact over the years but began to fall into disrepair during the first half of the twentieth century. It landed in the hands of furniture designer Burnett Webster in 1962 and he undertook a complete programme of restoration and upgrading, installing bathrooms, kitchen, swimming pool and electricity, many of the furniture pieces found inside were built by him. It changed hands again and underwent even more restoration and modern additions.
The landscaping though is quite exquisite! Quaint courtyards flood the spaces as well as a tropical array of flowers.
It felt surreal, as if I was experiencing a series of houses and as I walked though the spaces. I found my self climbing and descending stairs of various types and landing in even more interesting and peculiar rooms. I was told that one of the owners was quite eccentric. I do wish there was a better way to explain how it felt but I’m at a loss for words and sadly I feel that even my photos are inadequate.
AND THEN! I got to the back/back-side… and it was if I’d entered another zone entirely. I’d taken a passage to India! Check out the photos below:
Check out my next blog post which covers our third and final stop for the day -- to a Great House on 600 acres of land. I'm quite excited as I wass told my grandfather used to work on this property.
If you missed part 1 in the series you can get it here
.Written by Latoya Gail, Georgian Society member and owner of Ayo Designs in St. Ann