Jamaica’s First-Ever Speakeasy Will Transport You Back in Time
Food & Drink

Jamaica’s First-Ever Speakeasy Will Transport You Back in Time

There’s a nostalgic bar hidden away in Ocho Rios, Jamaica that invokes the elusive underground world of the 1920s. It’s called the Rabbit Hole and it’s the first and only speakeasy in the Caribbean. When stepping inside you’ll instantly feel transported back in time to a bygone era of jazz bands, bootleggers and Prohibition.

Ready to visit the Roaring Twenties? This is an experience you don’t want to miss.


Courtesy of Stephanie Cavelli | Flickr.com

Voyage Back in Time in Ocho Rios

Speakeasies have their origins in the 1800s when Kate Hester, an unlicensed bar owner, told her patrons to “speak easy” about her establishment to keep away authorities. In the 1920s these bars were officially illegal but a well-known secret that catered to the wealthy and famous. They were hidden behind cupboards, floorboards and dark alleys. You needed a password to enter each luxurious, secret world, which only added to the mysterious allure.

True to 1920s speakeasies, the elusive Rabbit Hole bar in Sandals Ochi beach resort is hidden away by overgrown plants—you’ll need resort staff to help you find it. Once you find the door, you’ll be asked a password. Keep in mind that, in true speakeasy style, the password changes every day—you need to make good connections in the resort.


Courtesy of Stephanie Cavelli | Flickr.com

Once inside, you’ll feel like you stepped back in time. Chandeliers dangle from the ceiling, pin-ups grace the walls, jazz and blues singers entertain the guests and cushioned loveseats replace ordinary sofas. The decor is inspired by the whimsical, wacky styles of Alice in Wonderland and those Prohibition-era secret lounges. Waitresses are dressed in flapper attire and will ask you “what’s your poison?” You should definitely order a Prohibition-era moonshine to start to get into that 1920s vibe. The dress code is casual, but feel free to dress like a 1920s undercover cop or flapper!


Courtesy of Stephanie Cavelli | Flickr.com

Sip on a Jazz-Age-Era Cocktail

The bartenders, too, are dressed like the Prohibition era: white shirts covered by vests and derby hats. Rabbit Hole offers top shelf ‘hooch’ from the best brands available: a mixture of classic 1920s cocktails, like moonshine, as well as modern and innovative drinks. Consider the excellent ‘Sidecar’ cocktail, the ‘Redneck Lemonade’ martini or the tangy ‘Bee’s Knees’. Gourmet dining is also available, with a menu that includes unique, international cuisine.

Like in a traditional speakeasy, you can stay down on the first floor or head up to the upscale lounge to dance the night away.


Courtesy of Darren Podiluk | Flickr.com

How to Get to the Rabbit Hole

The Rabbit Hole is an exclusive feature of the Sandals Ochi beach resort in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. The all-inclusive beach resort also offers a beach club, 11 bars and 16 restaurants. The hillside here features a serene 100-acre garden escape while the beachside offers water sports like scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing and paddleboarding.

While at the speakeasy, don’t worry about the bill—this experience is part of the resort’s all-inclusive features. Remember, just like the secret speakeasies back in the day, it’s best to make friends with staff at the resort who can get you in and out of the Rabbit Hole.

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