Pandama serves wine & retreat to the world

From left, Glen Savory, Pandama vintner, Tracey Green-Douglas; Mark Murray, Vintner Warren Douglas and Seon Lawrence, toast with Pandama’s popular Jamoon wine.
Photo by Tangerine Clarke

Warren and Tracey Douglas are the only vintners in Guyana who have served up their naturally blended fruit wines to travelers from around the world for more that four years.

Pandama Retreat and Winery, located in the vast tropical belt of the East Bank of Demerara among the beautiful Pandama palms, sandy habitat, and black water creek, showcases the beauty of the region.

Warren, a re-migrant and former United States Navy specialist said visitors enjoyed Pandama winery the moment the retreat opened with two picnic tables. And since then, Pandama has developed to include campgrounds, and bird watching. In addition, the United States Peace Corps that has been a regular visitor to the retreat will set up a boys’ camp in the new year to give students the opportunity to enjoy the natural environment that is home to campfire and storytelling under the stars.

“We have been involved in community work, while providing discount services to the Rotatory and Lion’s clubs,” said Warren, whose new creek-side bar and Lounge at the new Jamoon Landing down by the black water’s edge, has become a hit with visitors who relax and unwind during their stay at the retreat.

Pandama, that began as a week-end getaway, has progressed to a daily operation and has seen visitors from Russia, Australia, Great Britain, Belgian, and as far away as China and Japan.

The hotspot on the Linden Soesdyke Highway, has been wooing worldwide travelers through its Pandama Facebook page and website www.pandamaretreat.com which is updated for bookings.

Tour packages include, Bird Watching, Cooking with Tracey, Wine Tasting, Art and Wine Tours, and more. Warren and Tracy Douglas are a talented couple whose vision to set up the first Guyana winery became a reality in 2010.

The delicious organic wines served, are Jamoon, Mango, Aunty Desmond, Five-finger, Pineapple, Noni, Cherry, Malacca Pear, Duka, Carambola and Sorrel.

Pandama Wines also offers Pulse, a libido enhancement tonic wine, made from barks native to Guyana and the Amazon Basin.

“It is a real treat and has gotten rave reviews from women and gentlemen alike,” according to Warren.

“We have come a long way in five short years,” said Warren, who brought his American-born wife Tracy Green Douglas to Guyana. The talented Tracy in turn, carved her own niche, to become one of the most creative and sought after batik designers. Her oil paints on clothes, on sneakers, and post cards represent the colorful beauty of Guyana and the Caribbean. www.redbubble.com

Tracy has also become a master chef, creating thin crust whole-wheat pizza – topped with local vegetables of eddo leaf, papaya, aubergine (egg-plant), pineapple and roasted garlic, and served on Sundays. In addition, she designs soap of Avocado and papaya, and lightly scented with turmeric powder.

Famous website TripAdvisor.com has lit up with rave reviews about Pandama Retreat and Winery experience.

Mark of Miami writes, “I visited Pandama for the day with my guide Leon. We walked the nature trails and saw incredible birds and three species on monkeys. The wildlife is concentrated and you get amazing looks. We chilled out by the beautiful pond and swam in the nutrient rich “black water.” I felt so relaxed and at one with the stunning fauna.
I then had the pleasure of chatting with the owners Tracy and Warren about their wine making, Tracy’s art and their journey to set up Pandama. They emit such a welcoming and calming energy. I hope to be back again one day soon.”

The Funkateers of France said Warren and Tracey are amazing hosts with an amazing home, which they are willing to share with the intrepid traveller! “We stayed for a weekend in their cabin and were lucky enough to spend lots of time with our hosts. This is not your average hotel (just as Guyana is not your average holiday destination for Europeans) — Pandama is located about 45 minutes from Georgetown, although Warren arranged transport with a super-friendly and informative local driver for us.”

“We were welcomed with a glass of their organic wine which was delicious — even for die-hard beer drinkers! Tracey (a great artist) cooked us fabulous dinners and breakfasts when we were ready — especially once we were nursing a hangover!,” said the Funkateers.

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