|Sandals Ochi Beach Resort, Jamaica|
From new Sandals resorts in Jamaica and Barbados, boutique hotel debuts in The Bahamas to a number of properties opening in tropical destinations, here is the scoop on the most notable warm-weather, all-inclusive hotel happenings of 2015, and a look at what’s ahead.
The Island House Debuts in Lyford Cay
Early in 2015, a new boutique property debuted in Lyford Cay on the western tip of New Providence Island, The Bahamas called The Island House.
The hotel has 30 garden- and ocean-view rooms, each with a rain shower, a separate bath and a private outdoor terrace. Two poolside cottages partition into suites and junior suites with such amenities as an al fresco shower, a 580-square-foot porch and a hanging daybed.
In addition, there are six two- and three-bedroom apartments with views of the ocean and the southern expanse of the island. All accommodations carry the Bamford Body Collection, Apple TVs and complimentary Wi-Fi.
There is also The Bamford Spa, offering a range of services from massages to herbal body scrubs, a yoga program called Antigravity, Pilates and a dance program, along with a 25-meter lap pool, movement studio, a fully equipped gym and two squash courts.
Bahia Principe Opens Its Doors In November
Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts unveiled its 12th property in the Dominican Republic in November with Bahia Principe Samana Don Pablo Collection.
The 149-room adults-only resort is located along the north coast of the country and has unobstructed views of Samana Bay and the Caribbean Sea. It is housed on five floors with two buildings containing 40 Junior Suites, 78 Superior Rooms and 31 Standard Rooms. There is also one pool, four bars and three international restaurants.
Butler service, pillow menu, 24-hour room service, four-poster bed, rooms filled with amenities from coffee makers to satellite TV and turn-down service are some of the services that guests can expect. Additionally, resort guests of the Samana property have access to free boat transfers to the nearby public beach on Cayo Levantado, or “Bacardi Island”.
Two New Sandals Properties Open in Jamaica and Barbados
Travelers to Jamaica or Barbados can visit the newly renovated Sandals Ochi Beach Resort, or Sandals Barbados.
Sandals Ochi Beach Resort received a new look in 2015, complete with new outdoor water decorations by the lobbies, renovated guest rooms, new restaurants and a refreshed look. All accommodations at the refreshed resort have been updated, and the resort has introduced the All-Butler Village with roughly 200 villas and 70 butlers. Butlers can also arrange anything from luggage unpacking to delivery of 6 p.m. cocktails by one of the 98 private villa pools.
There are four types of villas in the village, including six Romeo and Juliet Suites, designed for a romantic stay. The villas are completely private, with many offering views of the water.
The new Ochi Beach Club has cabanas and seating, a pool area and entertainment provided by a DJ. Guests can enjoy theme nights at the club like Reggae night; however, the club closes around 11 p.m. The Impression Group helped design the club to resemble a traditional Mediterranean beach club.
Along with the new property in Ochi Beach, Sandals Barbados also opened earlier in 2015 following a $65 million renovation on the site of the former Couples Barbados in Christ Church on the island’s south coast.
Sandals Barbados has 280 rooms across three villages: Ocean, Crystal Lagoon and Caribbean. Club Level rooms have balconies overlooking the swimming pool, a large soaking tub in the bathroom and the 46 inch smart TVs in both the living room and bedroom.
For dining, the property offers 11 different options, including Butch’s Chophouse and Bombay Club, and Dino’s Pizzeria, which serves an array of personal pies from a brick oven.
Club Sandals is available for all guests staying in any Club Level room or any category that includes butler service. Guests also have access to a private concierge, available to assist with reservations for spas, excursions and restaurants.
|Suite at Galley Bay Resort & Spa in Antigua|
Upgraded Accommodations at Galley Bay Resort & Spa
Galley Bay Resort & Spa in Antigua recently underwent renovations of six of its 15 bungalows, and has made plans to upgrade the remaining nine by the end of summer 2016.
In addition to the upgraded bungalows, the resort now has a new gift shop which also serves as a grocery store, a new Diamonds International shop, a new rum and cigar bar and a new fitness center that offers ocean views, something the previous gym did not offer. The previous gift shop was converted into an office for the owner and general manager while the gym is now part of a shopping complex.
New Riu Palace Antillas Hotel and Updated Riu Palace Aruba
Riu Palace Aruba reopened last summer after a thorough refurbishment, offering a fresh look with a modern, comfortable feel.
The all-inclusive resort is situated on a stretch of the island’s Palm Beach, and offers updated facilities and amenities including two fresh water swimming pools (one with adjoining whirlpool bath), sauna, gym, solarium-terrace and Renova spa with a range of treatments. Dining options include a buffet and four themed restaurants.
In addition, located just next door is the new, adults-only beachfront Riu Palace Antillas Hotel, offering a pool, spa and multiple restaurants, as well as an Aquagym and diving school. Both hotels offer free entry to the Pacha discotheque and the casino.
Holiday Inn Resort Montego Bay Completes $15 Million Renovation
In Jamaica, the Holiday Inn Resort Montego Bay updated its brand identity, including the dropping of “SunSpree” from its name, following a $15 million renovation.
Guests can now enjoy updated guest rooms, an expansive oceanview lobby, the onsite Sol-Mer Spa & Beauty Salon, and each of the property’s four restaurants offering a variety of cuisines, including seafood, Japanese, Caribbean and Italian.
The resort’s new RoseHall Club Adult Concept is a special section of the property reserved strictly for grown-ups, including a lounge, premium amenities and services and blocks of rooms to create a child-free oasis within the property.
Soon to Open: Dreams Dominicus La Romana
Dreams Dominicus La Romana in Bayahibe, Dominican Republic, is set to open in October 2016.
The property will be the 15th for the Dreams Resorts & Spas brand. Guests will enjoy ocean views and beach access at the resort and visit the island of Saona, a government-protected nature reserve located just 30 minutes away. AMResorts will have eight properties in the Dominican Republic under five of its brands upon the resort’s opening.
|Park Hyatt St. Kitts|
Park Hyatt St. Kitts Slated to Open This Year
Not necessarily an all-inclusive, but one to know about now. The anticipated opening of the Park Hyatt St. Kitts is scheduled for 2016.
Set on a secluded beach with dramatic vistas of the volcanic island of Nevis, the hotel is currently under construction, and is billed as one of the world’s hottest luxury hotel openings. The property will have 125 guest rooms set in a contemporary colonial-style with the design concept by Arcadia Architects.
Accommodations will include suites with rooftop pools overlooking the Caribbean, including the Presidential Suite for ultra-luxe amenities, including private butler service and a personal chef. There will also be multiple dining options, 7,000 square feet of meeting and banquet facilities, an outdoor infinity pool and a 12-room spa, a Christophe Harbour’s Tom Fazio-designed 18-hole golf course, a beach club and a 300-acre “super yacht marina.”
Zoetry Announces Plans For New Property in Aruba.
In 2015, the signing of Zoetry Isla Di Oro Aruba by the Apple Leisure Group subsidiary, AMResorts, signaled that the award-winning Zoetry Wellness & Spa Resorts brand would be arriving in Aruba in summer 2018.
The resort will be one of the first properties in the Caribbean to have overwater bungalow-style accommodations, offering a unique experience to guests visiting the region. The property will have 126 suites overlooking a secluded inlet affording views of the water and surrounding tropical landscape.
Owned by developer/hotelier Franz Sydow and an international investment group, construction of the property began in 2015.