Good Hope Great house
Good Hope Great house
Good Hope Great House is located in Falmouth Trelawny on the island of Jamaica about eight (8) miles from Falmouth Square and dates back to the 1700’s. It is part of the good hope estate which is over a thousand acres acres and borders the Martha Brae river.
The Great house is now part of an attraction run by Chukka called the “Good Hope Adventure Park and Falls. Below the article is a link, if you are interested in booking a tour. This article focuses on the Great house, the various buildings and interesting history associated with the Great House.
This Majestic original Georgian style great house was built by Col. Thomas Williams in 1755. He was the grandson of one of the earliest settlers of the island after the English conquest. It is one of the few Great houses that although changing hands over the years can be said to have the same look and feel it had when it was first built. The house was built for Col. Williams wife Elizabeth who passed away at the youthful age of 23. She was buried in the cellar, as the story is told her husband could not bear the thought of her grave been exposed to the elements. A simple stone marker indicate the spot where she was buried.
The great house has had a few owners over the years the next owner being John Tharp who at the age of 24 purchased the Estate in 1967. Interestingly a story is told that he had a child with one of his slaves. He ran it property as a sugar plantation and added several interesting and unique building remnants of which can be seen today.
He expanded the property to 9000 acres by purchasing surrounding estates. So much so that at one time the estate was basically a village with a church, hospital consisting of 300 beds, a school for slaves that taught reading and writing.
Points of interest
Also on the Estate were a counting house,
basically an outside office as it was thought improper do officially business in the house,
Sugar Factory, coach house, water wheel boiling house and an office for shipping known as Tharp house. The estate stopped operating in 1902 as a sugar factory having change ownership several times.
The Georgian architecture can still be seen from the tray ceiling to the original orange wooden floor. Over the years the Estate has operated depending on the owner as a Yoga retreat, a ranch and a hotel. Interestingly the Good Hope estate boasts the first hot copper water bath in the Caribbean, which can still be seen today.
The Great House is un-spoilt and retains most of Georgian Style architectural styling which can be seen in the design of windows, verandahs, windows trimmed with jalousies, high raftered ceilings, pitch pine and wild orange termite resistant wood flooring.
Even though Georgian architecture is seen mostly through the property some section do show an amalgamation of Spanish influence, this is most noticeable on parts of the foundation that have stone faced walls; even an entire section seems to have been constructed of Spanish bricks.
The rooms are elegantly designed with the Caribbean climate in mind, high ceiling, large rooms, Palladian windows trimmed with jalousies and shutters allow for natural cooling and comfort of house and keep it well-lit with sunlight. A tour of the Great house offers a glimpse into the how the owners lived.
From the day bed that is placed at the side of the regular bed, to the portable potty, chamber pot that is complete with a stylist chair for comfortable seating, the copper hot water bath, already mentioned. Good Hope Estate is a must visit attraction for history lovers.
Currently Good Hope Great house is operated as an attraction by Chukka Caribbean and features a myriad of attractions such as ziplining, river tubing, horse and buggy, dune buggy rides.