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Pack for a Purpose

Pegasus Has Football Fever!

From the Jamaica Gleaner, published June 20, 2010 by Chester Francis-Jackson

So the world is currently having football fever and you are feeling somewhat left out, because you are one of the sorry fans who never thought of going to South Africa for the event.

Well, not to worry because it's a case of 'if Mohammed can't make it to the mountain, then in this day and age of technological marvels, the mountain will come to Mohammed'. So, for many fans of the greatest sporting spectacles on mother Earth, one can actually enjoy a virtual South African football experience right here at New Kingston's Jamaica Pegasus hotel, in the heart of the business district and hip strip!

It's the hottest football show in town, as the lobby of the landmark hotel has been transformed from its usual crisp businesslike flavour to that of an African safari interrupted, of course, by strategically placed plasma television sets, broadcasting competition in real time, along with running commentary.

But the beauty of the experience is that you have all heard the old phrase, 'it takes a village to raise a child!' Well, football is like that, as it takes a coming together of people to really enjoy the sport and to facilitate the camaraderie and celebration.

For those in the corporate, social and culinary know, Mondays are known as oxtail Mondays at the hotel. This perennial favourite is the dish of renown at the hotel's 24-7 Cafe, and little wonder as the chefs serve up a finger-licking oxtail and broad bean stew, that has literally become the talk of the town in recent times. Now, imagine the potent combination of oxtail stew and World Cup Football fever, and then you you will be able to imagine the culinary and sporting excitement at the cafe.

Vintage Wine

To complement the fabulous fare, the wine of the hour was decidedly South African in vintage. The brand was Golden Kaan, that boasts a wide range of the party elixir that included Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chiraz and Chardonnay Chenin Blanc. But the toast of the day was definitely a delicately proportioned Rose (Pinotage), that was the perfect companion to the stew, and made for a great afternoon libation.

Sponsored by Jamaica National Building Society, with associate sponsors Lucozade, Singer and Key Motors, the hotel's World Cup thrust has transformed not just the lobby of the world-class hotel, long since considered the crossroads of the world by many an international visitors and nationals alike, but also the New Kingston landscape, as the hotel's portico and immediate VIP parking have been decorated to reflect an exotic display area for some of Key Motors' hottest vehicles, against a backdrop of elephants, black rhinos, zebras and leopards in a theme-park mode, carrying over in the lobby to complete the African safari experience in the village.

And, if lyming in the 'jungle' and sipping on imported wine is not how you want to pass your time while watching the World Cup, then there's the Singer VIP Lounge, complete with wet bar and preferred libations. Here, in total air-conditioned comfort, it's pretty much white-glove service. The house drink, as well as the preferred libation, is a zesty Jamaican rum punch, for those of drinking stature, or a cup of Blue Mountain coffee.

We are talking an imaginative approach to marketing and promoting, not just by the hotel, but also a novel way of breathing life into a city grown somewhat jaded due to recent happenings. And talk about buzzing. Well, that word is what best describes the Jamaica Pegasus' World Cup Village and Expo, and among the notables spotted out last Monday at the opening were the fabulous Issa twins and heiresses, the lovely Muna Issa and her sibling, the equally lovely Zein Issa Nakash; businessman Steve Lyn Kee Chow of Pickapeppa fame; Caribbean national Elsa Turnbull, in from St Bart's; Vaughn Turland; Robert Stephenson, fresh from his Asiatic tour; hot male model phenom Miguel Bernard; plus a number of international personalities, in for Caribbean Fashionweek!

The village is definitely the place to be and be seen as the games continue!

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