Romantic Honeymoon Destination: Bahamas
The typical Bahamas honeymoon? There’s no such thing. With hundreds of islands to choose from, your romantic getaway can be as laid-back as the Out Islands, or a high-energy romp through the upall- night clubs and casinos in stylish and sophisticated Nassau and Paradise Island.
The Cove, Eleuthera is not for everyone—but it’s heaven for honeymooners who want to have a minimum of distractions and a maximum of time together on unspoiled pink sand beaches known for their sublime sunsets. The Cove resort blends a barefoot Out Island ethos with luxe amenities like an infinity pool, sushi bar, fine dining and romantic boudoirs kitted with 500-thread-count linens. The Cove’s three-bedroom oceanfront honeymoon villa, complete with a private pool, deck and butler, is just a 45-minute flight via the resort’s private charter plane from Ft. Lauderdale, so in next to no time you’ll be getting pampering massages, diving in the clear island waters and biking around Eleuthera to explore this quiet island’s many hidden charms.
Sandals Emerald Bay is the crown jewel of the Bahamas’ all-inclusive resorts—a former Four Seasons hotel located on a mile-long beach on the Out Island of Great Exuma. Couples who love to golf will adore playing Emerald Bay’s 18-hole, Greg Norman championship course, perhaps followed by a soothing treatment for two at the Red Lane Spa, which uses only organic botanical and indigenous products for massages, body scrubs and other services. Flower petals on your bed greet you at the resort’s Love Nest luxury suites, and honeymoon packages include fresh flowers delivered each morning, breakfast in bed, personal butler service and private candlelight dinners on the beach.
For a more intimate experience, check into one of the Pink Sands Resort’s twenty-six beach cottages, each with its own private patio and widely spaced amid twenty acres of lush and landscaped tropical grounds on Harbour Island. The very private Bimini Cottage has an outdoor jacuzzi and its own secret path to the beach. Foodies will love the Bahamian cooking classes led by the resort’s executive chef, Ed Boncich, and Harbour Island is a great base for a bone fishing excursion—the classic Out Islands experience.
Nassau and Paradise Island also offer honeymooners easy access to fishing and dive charters, but what sets these sister islands apart from the Out Islands is their exuberant nightlife, including one (and soon to be two) of the biggest casinos in the world.
At The Cove Atlantis, you can keep it simple by the pool or beach or tap the expertise of the resort’s honeymoon concierge, who will help you choose from countless dining and activity options, including dolphin swims and the incredible Aquaventure water park. Start your honeymoon at The Cove with champagne and strawberries, then book a private cabana at the Cain poolside club for cocktails and canoodling. Evenings begin with chef dinners at Nobu, Olives Atlantis or Mesa Grill, then perhaps a private gaming lesson before hitting the tables at the casino or the dance floor at Aura.
Looking for the best of both worlds? The One&Only Ocean Club offers the quiet charms of a smaller resort but with easy access to everything Atlantis has to offer. Seduce each other James Bond style at the resort’s classic oceanfront suites, or sign up for a broad range of ultra-private experiences, from rum tastings to beach or garden dinners, golf lessons, tennis lessons, beach massages or fitness training.
Speaking of experiences, you’ll have a unique opportunity to enjoy one of the most anticipated resorts in the world when the new Baha Mar Casino & Hotel debuts on Nassau Beach in 2014. This $3.5-billion development promises to be a mecca for honeymooners when it opens with no less than four luxurious new resorts including the signature casino/hotel and properties from Rosewood, Grand Hyatt, and the Mondrian, which brings its art, fashion and style sensibilities from South Beach and Los Angeles to the Caribbean. The centerpiece of the emerging Bahamian Riviera will include multiple restaurants and spas, high-end shopping and the largest casino in the region—all on four hundred acres of beachfront property, with a romantic private island just offshore.
> Written by Bob Curley
GRACE ORMONDE WEDDING STYLE