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Diplo’s Port Antonio, Jamaica – The New York Times

Diplo’s Port Antonio, Jamaica - The New York Times

Diplo, born Thomas Wesley Pentz, fell in love with Jamaica, particularly its Portland parish on the northeast coast, nearly 20 years ago. “I was D. on a cruise ship, got off in Ocho Rios, and drove through Port Antonio to get to Kingston,” said the 13-time Grammy nominee who has collaborated with Dua Lipa, Sturgil Simpson, Snoop Dogg, Shakira, Bad Bunny and countless other musicians. “Portland is sort of like Costa Rica, all jungly and waterfalls. And Port Antonio is this quaint little town where I’d go on a sort of retreat, “Mr. Pentz added. About eight years ago he bought some farmland and built a house there.

Mr. Pentz thinks Port Antonio is a calmer option than Ocho Rios or other popular tourist spots on Jamaica for people who enjoy nature, hiking, waterfalls and, of course, beaches. It’s also for those who seek a more authentic experience. “It’s the sort of city where you’re mixing with the locals, and I think that’s what special about it,” he said.

Born in Mississippi and raised in Florida, Mr. Pentz has traveled extensively and D.J.ed on every continent, including Antarctica. A livestream of his D.J. set there, which took place on the helipad of Atlas Ocean Voyages’ World Voyager, was posted on YouTube in January.

Recently, Mr. Pentz has become a runner. He ran the Los Angeles marathon and competed in the Malibu Triathlon, but found that something was missing from the experience: a post-run celebration. So, he launched Diplo’s Run Club, a series of 5K runs — the inaugural events take place this fall in Seattle and San Francisco — culminating in afterparties, with D.J. sets from Diplo and friends, at the finish line. When he’s not running or traveling for work, he spends time at his home in Jamaica.

Here are five of his favorite places in and around Port Antonio.

When Mr. Pentz first started coming to Port Antonio, he would often hang out and work on music at Geejam, a boutique hotel set on six acres of tropical rainforest at the edge of the Caribbean. “It was built as a sort of studio for Kingston artists and singers,” he said, and it continues to attract artists and Hollywood types, as well as Jamaicans from other parishes who check in for staycations. “You’ll sometimes see someone like Shawn Mendes or other artists who might be recording in the studio,” he said. The hotel, which has access to Frenchman’s Cove, a white sand beach, has large villas, cozy cabins tucked into the jungle…

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