Something for Everyone at Baha Mar
Three hotels and multiple amenities in the Bahamas
BY DON NICHOLS — Winter 2018
ong-delayed, this Nassau project is finally up and running and will soon offer three distinctively different lodging options. The 1,800-room Grand Hyatt unveiled its East Tower last April and its West Tower in October. SLS began welcoming guests at its 299-room hotel in November, and Rosewood will round out the collection with a 235-room property scheduled to open in spring. All three hotels are nestled closely together on 1,000 acres fronting a half-mile stretch of Cable Beach, considered one of the Bahamas’ best. Here are five things you’ll like …
1. Location, Location, Location
It’s just 5 miles from Nassau’s Lynden Pindling International Airport, so you can be settled into your room and on the beach before you know it.
2. Swimming With Sharks (Sort of)
With a resort this size, it shouldn’t surprise you that the three hotels share six large pools — all in the same area, all shaped differently, all with a different vibe, and all equally hard to resist. But for thrills, you’ll want to head to the one called Dean’s Blue Hole. There, kids and adults alike scream excitedly as they jump fearlessly from two man-made cliffs into water 15 feet deep. When you’ve got jumping out of your system, swim into a grotto where two large windows reveal sharks, sea turtles, and stingrays swimming around the waters of the resort’s adjacent marine sanctuary. For a bit more exclusivity, both the SLS and Rosewood also have pools for their guests only.
3. Rolling the Dice, Testing Your Luck
If gaming gets your juices flowing, you’ve come to the right place. Baha Mar is home to a 100,000-square-foot gambling mecca, this tropical region’s largest casino, which you’ll find inside the Grand Hyatt just off the lobby. It’s Vegas with a tropical twist. Among its features: 119 table games, including blackjack and baccarat; 1,140 slot machines; an exclusive high-limit slot area; five private gaming salons; and race and sports betting. Just as in Sin City, numerous bars and dining outlets complement the scene, but I especially liked Blue Note, a glitzy piano bar with live music nightly.
4. Teeing Up in the Sun
The 18-hole, 7,189-yard Jack Nicklaus Signature course at the Royal Blue Golf Club surprises (and challenges) with its split personality. Predictably, the front nine deliver a calming coastal experience, with undulating fairways, sand dunes, brackish ponds, and peeks at the Atlantic. But the back nine serve up more drama at a higher elevation; swing your way through limestone “moonscapes,” dense jungle, and steep terrain. Tee locations change daily, so you feel like you’re playing a different course each time you tee up. A big thumbs-up to the extensive club rental program, featuring the latest models from industry leaders such as PXG as well as handmade Japanese Itobori clubs.
5. Chilling Out
Don’t pass up Espa’s first spa in the Bahamas and first flagship spa in the Caribbean. In the spa’s blissful 30,000 square feet, therapists focus on soothing and rejuvenating guests with a wide array of services in 24 treatment rooms. An added plus: Its large gym serves fitness buffs well with top-of-the-line equipment. As you work up a sweat, you’ll also like the view out over the pools and the ocean.
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