[ New Providence] • Sandals Royal Bahamian Resort

What many people around the world knew as the Balmoral Club in the 1940’s is now the Sandals Royal Bahamian Resort & Offshore Island.  In its prime, this property hosted the likes of the Duke & Duchess of Windsor, former US President Richard Nixon, and even the Beetles. After such a prestigious history, in 1995 it became the 408 room, adults/couples only, all-inclusive resort today.

To impress guests, the Sandals Royal Bahamian Resort stuck to its regal history in its design. It features impressive Greco-Roman styled columns, statues, and fountains upon entry and around the resort property. Guests can wander around and discover historic artifacts and art nouveau touches like the restaurant Baccarat’s chandelier. Also offered at the resort are three levels of accommodations, 10 restaurants, each different from the other, and eight distinct bars (two of which are swim up bars in their immaculate pools).

The resort staff spares no effort on being helpful. Having the opportunity to spend the day at the resort by way of the day passes offered, I (like all other guests) received a dray load - yet not an overwhelming amount - of information in the lobby, including a schedule of both land and water activities and daily events. On the mainland, there are two pools, both near the beach. One pool, the Balmoral has more of an intimate and romantic feel to it. This pool appeals to the guest that simply wishes to unwind with their significant other in the relaxing atmosphere it provides. The other pool, however, is geared more towards the guests who are looking to party. The Windsor pool features events like interactive games such as, ‘Name that Tune’ - a game where about literally 2 seconds of music are played and patrons must guess the song. The prize? Well, there’s no actual prize other than the fostering of friendly relationships amongst all of the guests. The afternoon tends to typically be the more active period for the pools and the pool activity dies down with sunset.

One of the main attractions - if not the main attraction of the resort - is the offshore island; Sandals Cay. Sandals Cay is located just a half-mile off of the shores of the mainland and the resort shares the island with a popular cruise line. Sandals Royal Bahamian Resorts operates the eastern end of the island; this is where I spent most of my time. A boat leaves the mainland every hour, or for added thrill, you can travel to the island via Jet Ski. Cabanas are dotted all over the private island for comfort, around the pool (featuring another swim up bar) and along both of its two secluded beaches.

Whether it’s enjoying the buzz at the mainland resort, or making an escape to and unwinding in the relaxing environment of Sandals Cay, Sandals Royal Bahamian Resort is a true 5-star experience. After enjoying just one day on the property, it’s easy to understand why it’s the top rated resort in Nassau on TripAdvisor.