KINGSTON, Jamaica: Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Dr. Wykeham McNeill, has announced that the world renowned Lover’s Leap in St. Elizabeth will be reopened in March.
The attraction was closed in 2010 after the previous operator, who had leased the property from the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo), suddenly decided to end the arrangement.
In his address to tourism partners from the south coast during a recent stakeholder’s meeting in Treasure Beach, St. Elizabeth, Dr. McNeill said: “Lover’s Leap is an important attraction and attractions drive tourism. Anything that you have that is of interest is what gets visitors out, and I think it is really sad that Lover’s Leap has been closed for as long as it has…
“Over the last year or so I have been bombarded by calls regarding Lover’s Leap, both while I was in opposition and since I became minister. One of the first things I did when I assumed office last month was to meet with the Executive Directors of TPDCo and the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), and I indicated that I wanted Lover’s Leap to be reopened as quickly as possible. Following that meeting, we initiated steps to have this done.”
McNeill added that the attraction should be reopened in two weeks.
“Moving forward, we are going to develop a long-term plan as the facility will require significant work. However, there is no reason for it to remain closed while we determine what we are going to do with it.”
“I have instructed the team at TPDCo to give me a business plan outlining what exactly will happen, and they have indicated to me that the cost of running the facility in the interim is something that can easily be taken from their budget.”
He said that TPDCo will manage Lover’s Leap over the short-term “while we have discussions with stakeholders on how we go forward and develop the attraction.
“We are a blessed country because of what we have, but we have to keep refreshing our tourism product. We have to take what we have and make it better in order to make our resorts better and grow tourism in Jamaica.
“With this in mind, I really look forward to returning in March to reopen the Lover’s Leap attraction.”