Dominica's Fort Young Hotel & Dive Resort Set to Complete $18M Renovation

Fort Young Hotel & Dive Resort in Dominica’s capital, Roseau, has announced that its $18 million renovation is nearing completion. Now accepting reservations and due to be unveiled in November 2023, the updates will modernize and expand the hotel while preserving elements of the 17th-century fort and the heritage features from the original structure.

Adding to the recently refurbished 40 oceanfront rooms and suites, the resort’s expansion includes 60 new guestrooms, named the Fort Collection, bringing the total room count to 100. Among the new rooms are Fort Mountain View rooms and Fort Ocean View rooms, both located on the newly constructed and renovated historical section of the property. The Fort Mountain View rooms offer views of Dominica’s capital and the surrounding mountains, while The Fort Ocean View rooms have private balconies from which you can enjoy the sea breeze and sunsets. Both room categories are furnished with one king bed or two double beds, along with all the comforts of modern luxuries; they also may be interconnected, providing flexibility for families and groups. 

In addition to adding more guestrooms, the resort is introducing a host of new curated amenities, including the Compass Fitness Center, which has ocean views and will include treadmills, weights, bikes and elliptical machines, along with changing rooms, showers and lockers.

The Marquis Bar and Lounge is located in what was the troops’ barracks within the original fort walls, including the musket holes that were used to fire on invaders coming from the rear. Open throughout the day and evening, guests benefit from the natural light and ventilation provided by the opened walls leading to the covered pathway and courtyard. Another option, the Museum Café is embedded into a historic area of the old fort. It will serve local Dominican coffee and freshly baked pastries for guests to enjoy as a dine-in experience, as well as to grab-and-go.  

The Old Oven Art Gallery will house a rotating display of local artists, along with curated art exhibitions, other intimate events and private functions. Local artwork will be available for sale. The gallery is also home to the original brick oven and chimney, which is being showcased for the first time, and is crowned by a 172-square-foot skylight that looks up through a Rooftop Wellness Garden above. Another space, the Rum and Wine Cellar + Retail Space, was built within two separate but connected cells, which were once prison cells. The Rum & Wine Cellar will offer tastings of local rums and wines, which will also be for sale. This includes the hotel’s own ocean aged rum, which is based on the local “BB Rum,” a blend from the extract of the bark of the Richeria-Grandis (locally called Bois Bande) and exotic Caribbean spices. 

Deluxe Oceanfront Double Room
Deluxe Oceanfront Double Room (Fort Young Hotel & Dive Resort)

The Work & Play Hub is a central part of the resort, comprising four different areas designed as multipurpose rooms. These spaces offer executive and board meeting rooms, game rooms for both card games and video gaming, as well as printing and connectivity facilities. Additional amenities include a courtyard lounge and an outdoor play area featuring an oversized chess board, ping pong table and more. By the end of 2024, the resort also will have completed an auditorium that can accommodate 100 people, and a Rooftop Wellness Garden, a tranquil green oasis that offers respite for guests seeking a quiet moment for reading, yoga, enjoying a Dominican sunset or simply relaxing. 

Beyond new guestrooms and amenities, Fort Young Hotel's dive operation will also evolve as part of the resort’s transformation. The resort will now manage its own dive operations under the helm of William “Billy” Lawrence, an experienced local dive operator. Further, the resort has added two new boats with a total capacity of 56 divers or 75 non-divers.

Last year, Fort Young Hotel introduced the Zemi Spa, the island’s first oceanfront day spa. The spa has two private treatment rooms and two manicure and pedicure stations where certified therapists conduct a variety of services and treatments, including Swedish, Deep Tissue and Volcanic Rock massages, Body Treatments and Signature Rituals featuring clean, locally-inspired products. Guests can also book a package of multiple services. Spa visitors may also access the Compass Gym that overlooks the Caribbean Sea and is open 24-hours a day. 

The resort also recently earned Green Globe Certification, one of the highest standards for sustainability worldwide. Only the second property in Dominica to earn this accolade, the resort is recognized for its multiple community initiatives. 

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