established in the early 1960's
Nine miles west of Montego Bay this hill top estate of over seven acres is superbly sited to enjoy magnificent views over the Caribbean Sea and along the coast line to Montego Bay. Bambu is set in beautifully landscaped grounds with well manicured lawns bordered by lush tropical flora containing a wide variety of plants including the rare Japanese lantern hibiscus, Giant White Birds of Paradise, agapanthus, West Indian lilies, Giant Crinum lilies and ground planted orchids. There are wild white begonias, three varieties of heliconia, bougainvilleas, rare Bromeliads and Epiphytes with an interesting collection of Palm trees including Fox Tail Palms, Chinese Fan Palms, Lady Palms as well as Royal Palms and Coconut Palms together with white and lavender orchid trees and a bamboo garden. The grounds are well fruited with oranges, limes, guava, avocado, papaya, ackee, honey bananas and three varieties of mango. There are Poinciana trees surrounding the house on the north and east sides and tucked away in this lovely garden are a tree house for little boys and a play house for little girls.
Originally designed by the distinguished architect Robert Hartley in the early 1960's, Bambu is an impressive combination of classic West Indies architecture mixed with Italian Venetian style and Palladian arches. Together with the William Paley cottage at Round Hill, photographs of Bambu appeared in Slim Aaron's "A Wonderful Time" in 1974. In 2005 the house was entirely renovated from top to bottom and the newly landscaped gardens completed in 2006. In September 2008 Bambu was on the cover of Veranda magazine together with a featured article on the house and its interior designer Charles Faudree who accurately described Bambu as "….blending Old World elegance with New World comforts."
The house is entered through a wrought iron gate and double mahogany doors in to an impressive double level entry hall 40 feet high with antique brick floors and limestone walls. A semi circular staircase climbs to the main level of the house where on the west side there is a balcony with views of the Caribbean Sea and Round Hill and on the east side a large arched opening gives access to the main parts of the house through a covered walkway leading to the pool area.
The elegant circular swimming pool surrounded by Palladian arches is a focal point of the house and was inspired by the Emperor Hadrian's villa at Tivoli. On the west side of the pool area is the dining room (17ft x 17ft) which has four wooden louvered windows, large double doors opening to the pool and access to the pantry and kitchen. On the eastern side of the pool area is the octagonal living room, each of the eight sides being 12ft 8ins and five of the sides having tall arched French windows. Also on the west side of the pool area is the master bedroom suite with an entry foyer, a large bedroom (28ft x 19ft) and two dressing rooms and bathrooms en suite. There is a private verandah off the master bedroom and a path leads from the verandah to a private outdoor patio overlooking the Great River. On the south side of the pool area there are two guest bedrooms (16ft x 16ft) and a children's bunk room all with bathrooms en suite.
On the north side of the pool area there is an octagonal outside dining pavilion, each of the eight sides being 7ft 6ins with great views of the Caribbean Sea and the tropical gardens.
On the north side of the house a covered walkway leads to another bedroom wing containing two more guest bedrooms (16ft x 16ft) with bathrooms en suite. At the end of this bedroom wing there is a very attractive octagonal family room, each of the eight sides being 8ft 3ins which mimics the living room in design and has six large arched French windows. The family room has a full fitted bar and a 180 degree view of the Caribbean Sea from Montego Bay in the east to Round Hill in the west. In the kitchen and staff wing on the south side of the house there is the kitchen, two pantries, staff terrace, two staff bedrooms, staff bathroom, staff kitchen and laundry. On the south side of the staff quarters there is a small house for the gardener, a full house generator and an electronic wrought iron gate on the back drive.
On the lower level there is a garage with access to the entry hall, one staff room, extensive storage and wine cellar.