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South Ocean Resort
Sunrise Beach Club
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Viva Wyndham Fortuna
Westin Lucaya Beach
Wyndham Nassau Resort
Former private estate favored by jet-set crowd
Paradise Island (Bahamas)
Po Box N 4777
What to expect: Originally a private estate, the Ocean Club owes its existence to Huntington Hartford II, the legendary 1950s playboy who bought the estate and converted it into a resort for his jet-set crowd. Its glittering 1962 opening drew entertainment luminaries, royalty, and politicians from around the world. Current owners bought the resort in 1994 and spent $100 million renovating and expanding. Celebrities and world travelers still come, only now they seek seclusion rather than attention. Utter tranquility and hushed, discreet service on 35 garden acres awaits them.
Amenity highlights: Running for 3 miles along Paradise Island's north shore and accessible by a wood staircase, an uncrowded beach of fine white sand borders the turquoise Atlantic Ocean. Neat rows of cushioned lounge chairs fitted with folding shades furnish sunbathing comfort. Evian-water misting and afternoon sorbet offer heat relief. In the resort's renowned Versailles-styled gardens is a large pool surrounded by palm trees and cushioned wrought-iron lounge chairs. Loungers enjoy full views of the gardens, which feature a 12th century Augustinian cloister.
Insider tip: Complimentary shuttles transport guests 0.5 miles west on Paradise Island to the Atlantis resort (a sister property), where they enjoy access to all facilities and charging privileges, including 21 restaurants and lounges. Atlantis features 11 million gallons of water attractions, including a saltwater swimming, watersports, and snorkeling lagoon; numerous waterslides and pools; and 11 marine-life viewing lagoons. Also available are a teen club, the children's educational Discovery Channel Camp, and a 50,000-square-foot casino.
Featuring eight private treatment villas suitable for couples as well as singles, the resort's health spa employs Asian holistic rituals and includes a beauty salon offering private rooms with hardwood floors and gilt-frame mirrors. Decorated with Balinese carved-wood accents and Thai silk pillows, each villa includes side-by-side Javanese-teak treatment tables and a two-person shower with oversize rainfall showerhead. Outside, a private garden-courtyard contains a two-person Balinese daybed under a wood-shingle roof and a two-person jetted tub.
Signature offerings include the Ocean Club massage (two therapists employing five massage techniques), Elemis Aroma Spa Ocean Wraps (heated seaweed body masks followed by massage), and Elemis Fennel Cleansing Cellulite and Colon Therapy (detoxifying body mask and massage).
Stretching from the Ocean Club to near Nassau Harbor, the 0.25-mile-long gardens (built by Huntington Hartford II and modeled after the French original in Versailles) consist of seven terraces graced by Carrera-marble and bronze statues, including two of Empress Josephine reclining at the gardens' entrance; a 12th century Greek statue of Hercules; and two giant bronze statutes of Hartford heroes Franklin D. Roosevelt and explorer David Livingston. The gardens' apex features a 12th century Augustinian cloister from France that Hartford purchased from William Randolph Hearst.
Located on the lip of a low bluff between sloping lawns and the beach, a weathered-wood deck pierced by a single palm tree supplies a panoramic ocean view for twice-daily yoga classes. Snuggled again a seagrape hedge nearby, a tent-cabana offers the same view for open-air massage. Hammocks stretch between palm trees throughout the resort's 35 acres.
Children under 11 years old stay free of charge when sharing a room with adults.
Dune - Beachfront, 90-seat restaurant designed by famed French interior designer Christian Liaigre and created by renowned chef/restaurateur Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Minimalist décor. "Best of Jean-Georges" dinner menu with Bahamian accents such as peekytoe crab fitters, foie gras brulée, snapper with carrot confit, seven-spice rack of lamb. Lunch choices such as chili lobster sandwich, wasabi-tuna pizza, conch salad. Breakfast selections such as smoked salmon with potato pancake, crisp semolina cakes with roasted pineapple, Gruyere omelet.
Dune Bar - Adjacent to Dune restaurant. Open-air seating in white wood pavilion and on deck overlooking beach. Marble bar, lighted after dark. Lunch menu from Dune.
Courtyard Terrace Located in Hartford Wing garden-and-pool courtyard. White wrought iron seating under oversize white umbrellas. Linen service. Dinner featuring dishes such as lobster cappuccino, foie gras terrine, local lobster, Dover sole, Cuban-spice-rubbed organic chicken. Tableside service for Caesar salad, steaks, rack of lamb. Dessert souflés.
Pool Terrace Café - Open-air, covered seating under ceiling fans. Marble bar. Lunch of soups, salads, sandwiches, light meals such as seared ahi, Caribbean bento box of fish, shrimp, ceviche, grilled plantains, fruits.
Library Bar - Cuban cigars, fine brandies, cocktails, wine.
Ocean Club guests share with Atlantis resort guests exclusive access and complimentary shuttle service to the Tom Weiskopf-designed, oceanfront, 18-hole championship Ocean Club Golf Course 1 mile from the Ocean Club resort on Paradise Island's eastern peninsula. It's the home course of touring pro Ernie Els and site of the annual televised Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational. On the resort's grounds are nine Har-Tru tennis courts (four lighted), with a pro available for private lessons. Use of small sailboats, kayaks, and snorkeling gear is complimentary, as are bicycles for exploring Paradise Island.
Other recreational activities listed below are available at or near the resort; fees may apply.
The resort offers 106 large, air-conditioned guestrooms in two wings. Colored palest pink with white-wood staircases and railings, buildings feature West Indian colonial architecture: multi-plane peaked roofs and broad second-floor verandas overhanging ground-floor porches. Each room includes a spacious balcony or ground-floor terrace closed at both ends for privacy and furnished with two cushioned lounge chairs and a two-chair, white wrought-iron dining set. Special amenities feature 24-hour personal butler service, champagne and strawberries delivered every afternoon, daily fresh-fruit bowl, and thrice-daily maid service.
Extra-thick mattresses, Frette linens, comforters, and four oversize pillows (down, cotton, and foam available) assure sleeping comfort. Each room includes an entertainment center with 32-inch television and a twin-speaker CD/DVD player. (Complimentary use of CDs and DVDs are available in the resort's library.) Bathrobes and slippers, signature toiletries, and fans hanging from high ceilings contribute to vacation ease.
Pale-yellow walls, a seagreen bedspread, crown molding, a two-poster bed with elaborately carved headboard, lacquered furniture, Art Deco chrome lamps, and a cocktail table displaying a single orchid create a stylish, soothing ambience. Minibars are hidden in cabinets with granite tops that hold complimentary bottled Fiji water in silver holders as well as wine, cocktail, and highball glasses. Each room contains an oval dining table with two chairs and an upholstered reading chair. Bathrooms provide recessed lighting, lighted makeup mirrors, scales, and marble vanities.
The Hartford Wing , dating to the Ocean Club's opening in 1962, consists of a single two-story building (with elevators) surrounding a garden courtyard containing orchid-bedecked palm trees, hedges, flowers, and a long, narrow, decorative fountain-pool. Hartford Wing rooms measure 350 square feet and provide either garden or ocean views. Bedrooms are carpeted and have white louvered doors leading to balconies or terraces. Pale-marble bathrooms contain twin-sink taupe-marble vanities, tub/shower combinations, and bidets.
The Crescent Wing consists of five two-story buildings (no elevators) separated by high, dense tropical gardens. All Crescent Wing rooms are beachfront with ocean views and, at 550 square feet, are 57 percent larger than Hartford Wing rooms. Rooms include hardwood floors, sisal rugs, hardwood louvered doors opening to balcony or terrace, and offer dressing benches and ottomans with reading chairs. Each bathroom features a centerpiece Roman soaking tub backed by a concave mosaic-tile wall, a glassed-in stall shower containing a rainfall shower head and marble bench, and twin earthtone-marble vanities on wood stands. Sliding doors separate bathroom and bedroom.
Ocean-view room - Located in Hartford Wing. One king bed plus one-person futon. Large ocean-view balcony or ground-floor terrace with two cushioned lounge chairs, two-chair dining set. 350-square-foot interior. 32-inch television, twin-speaker CD/DVD player. Extra-thick mattress, Frette linens, comforter. Twin-sink marble vanity, tub/shower combination, bidet. 24-hour personal butler service, daily fresh-fruit bowl, champagne and strawberries delivered every afternoon.
Garden-view room - Located in Hartford Wing. One king bed plus one-person futon. Large garden-view balcony or ground-floor terrace with two cushioned lounge chairs, two-chair dining set. 350-square-foot interior. 32-inch television, twin-speaker CD/DVD player. Extra-thick mattress, Frette linens, comforter. Twin-sink marble vanity, tub/shower combination, bidet. 24-hour personal butler service, daily fresh-fruit bowl, champagne and strawberries delivered every afternoon.
Beachfront room - Located in Crescent Wing. One king bed plus one-person futon. Large balcony or ground floor terrace with closeup ocean view furnished with two cushioned lounge chairs, two-chair dining set. 550-square-foot interior. 32-inch television, twin-speaker CD/DVD player. Extra-thick mattress, Frette linens, comforter. Roman soaking tub backed by concave mosaic-tile wall. Glassed-in stall shower with rainfall showerhead, marble bench. Twin marble vanities on wood stands. 24-hour personal butler service, daily fresh-fruit bowl, champagne and strawberries delivered every afternoon.
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