Greetings, Gals! We've been jetsetting what feels like nonstop for the past few weeks and just returned from what was unexpectedly one of the most pleasant getaways we've had in some time - a trip to Bermuda. Washington, DC area visitors will love the ease of getting to Bermuda - it's an hour and a half flight (AirTran now offers a great direct flight from BWI at 12:55 daily) and seasonal service is available from Reagan National.
Bermuda is an interesting island - it's not Caribbean, despite its beachy reputation, nor is it tropical, despite the palm trees. The island is on about the same longitude as North Carolina and enjoys a similar climate - with a "high season" from Bermuda Day (around Memorial Day) to Labor Day. The wealthy British colony (technically an "overseas territory) is English-speaking and populated by about 65,000 residents, as many as 20,000 of whom are not of Bermudan descent - finance and tourism are the area's biggest businesses.
Where to Stay:
We spent the weekend a on a trip to visit Tucker's Point, Rosewood's newest hotel and spa property. The 88 room hotel is just about two years old (the island's newest hotel build!) and sits just ten minutes from the airport and about 20 minutes from downtown Hamilton, where you'll find most of the island's shopping, dining and nightlife. The beautiful resort offers an elegant British-meets-beach vibe and spacious guestrooms and suites with massive soaking tubs, custom-designed Lili Bermuda bath amenities and spectacular ocean views from most guestrooms. The resort offers three pool settings, including the island's largest pool, as well as a croquet lawn, golf course, several on-site dining options and a full-service spa.
We were huge fans of the spa, which offers a great array of naturally-sourced treatments from their on-site beehive and garden, including a sugar cane scrub and aloe vera massage. Be sure to try the Silver Tag shower, a five-minute water experience that's one of only seven worldwide.
Our biggest complaint? The somewhat erratic service - while most of the staffers were unfailingly polite, the service was at times quite slow and inconsistent. Thankfully, we think these problems will be eliminated as Rosewood moves to take over the property in the next few months- the management group is known for their high-quality service at resorts like Las Ventanas, The Mansion on Turtle Creek, Caneel Bay, Little Dix Bay and Jumby Bay.
What to Do:
The island itself offers a number of activities beyond beach bumming (although the pink sand beaches and aquamarine waters sure are tempting). From snorkeling to wreck diving to cave exploring and seasonal whale watching, there's plenty of adventure to be had. Shoppers will want to browse the chic boutiques of downtown Hamilton, while nightlife lovers will want to check out the area's many bars and clubs. We particularly enjoyed Fresco, which offers an outdoor space, and heard good things about The Twisted Onion and Hog Penny as well for more "dance-y" spots. Dine at traditional italian fave Little Venice, which is popular with locals and tourists alike.
On island, you can visit any of the public beaches, most of which are exceptionally well-maintained. Horseshoe Bay Beach is one of the area's most popular, and features the island's famed pink sand. If it's shopping you're after, consider a tour of the Lili Bermuda perfume factory, which features a small exhibit on how perfume is made as well as a "library" of the line's signature scents. Don't have time? They can also be purchased at Duty Free.
How to Get Around:
Taxi service is reasonably priced, but the island also offers a great public bus system.
You'll find direct flights from BWI and DCA on a seasonal basis. The tiny Hamilton airport is a breeze to enter and exit, and the small size of the island means the flight-to-beach time can be accomplished in just about two hours.
Our trip was sponsored, but the author's opinions are her own. Images courtesy of Tucker's Point.