Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas is launching a number of new product updates and sustainability initiatives, Travel Agent learned during a breakfast event at Travel Impressions’ recent Best of the Best conference, which took place November 21 – 23 and honored 153 top-performing travel agencies at the Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun in Riviera Maya, Mexico.
“We just completed our renovation of The Reef, and we’re now embarking on our renovation of The Royal,” says Karen Cargill, director of leisure sales. “It’s going to take 18 to 24 months, because w can only take so many rooms out of inventory at a time.”
When the renovation of The Royal is complete, agents will be able to book guaranteed bedding, just as they do for The Coral and The Cove. “I know that’s been a challenge for you,” Cargill said.
The property is also updating the flooring and furniture at Poseidon’s Table and Café Martinique.
Along with the new product updates, the resort is also working to improve its sustainability.
“Well over a year ago we started to downsize our plastic use in the Bahamas,” says Director of Leisure Sales Melissa Alexander. “It’s been more than a year now that you can’t get a plastic straw.”
Atlantis is now using paper straws, as well as biodegradable takeout cutlery, which is made of corn starch. The resort’s kitchens are also recycling their cooking oil into biodiesel fuel.
Also on the agenda are single-use plastic water bottles. “In our resort fee right now we include two bottles of water daily,” Alexander says. “On each floor where there’s an ice machine we’ve been putting in refill stations, and so instead of bottles of water we’ll be giving guests souvenir refill cups.”
In terms of dining, Alexander says that Café Martinque has completely redone its menu to be more plant-forward, and to favor locally sourced ingredients. At the restaurant Fish by Chef Jose Andres, the celebrity chef has been hiring local fishermen to hunt for lionfish, an invasive species. Lionfish are now his signature dish at the restaurant.
Finally, Alexander says that the resort has been working with the government of the Bahamas on recycling. “There wasn’t really a recycling program in the destination,” she says.
The resort has installed recycling bins for plastic and aluminum cans in front- and back-of-house locations. The resort is also running a test program to recycle its cardboard locally to aid in compost production.