Fodor's Expert Review The Hamilton Princess & Beach Club
76 Pitts Bay Rd., Hamilton, HM 11, Bermuda See on Map Fodor's Choice
The reigning royalty of Bermuda lodging, the Princess boasts some of the most comfortable rooms on the island and caters to its mainly business guests like no one else. It's the only full-service resort in Hamilton and is located right on the Harbour, just steps away from the liveliness of Front Street. Classy, contemporary, and recently updated rooms and suites offer garden, pool, or harbor views.
Although there's no beach at the Princess, you can hop aboard the complimentary jitney for easy access to their private South Shore Beach Club on Sinky Bay.
Accommodations range from tasteful and spacious to ultra-sophisticated and downright palatial; as you might guess from the prices, there's no such thing as a "standard" room. Upgrade to a suite for a balcony or terrace overlooking Hamilton Harbour.
If money is no object, then the Fairmont Gold experience is for you. In addition to dedicated concierge services, this special luxury tier gives guests access to a private lounge and patio as well as complimentary breakfast, afternoon tea, and evening canapés.
Unless you splurge for a suite, the bathrooms are quite small, though well-appointed with bathrobes and plenty of freebies. On the other hand, premium accommodations come with colossal marble bathrooms, rainfall showers, and tubs.
As far as lobbies go, this is one of the nicest--there's even someone waiting to open the door. With lofty ceilings and endless marble, the entrance is quite impressive, however there's usually a friendly, social buzz as guests make use of the comfortable lounge area, admire eye-catching sculptures and artwork, and order cocktails from the bar.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Think twice before planning a quiet, romantic Friday evening in the gardens or out on the dock. During the summer, this hotel hosts one of the best-attended harbor-side happy hours. Hundreds of locals and visitors gather inside and out for cheap drinks and upscale company.
An utterly breathtaking multi-level infinity pool looks straight out into Hamilton Harbour. Stake out a lounge chair in the shallows and spend the day watching boats cruise by. There's also a lap pool, a pergola for outdoor fitness classes, and a pool bar serving snacks, beer, and ice cream.
Lose yourself in the 5,400-square-foot exhale spa that offers everything from customizable facials to rum swizzle detoxification scrubs.
If two floors of state-of-the-art equipment doesn't motivate you to break a sweat, the enthusiastic private trainers and variety of fitness classes will.
Weekend yoga and barre classes are popular with the locals. Be sure to book your spot as early as possible.
Three gourmet restaurants, plus room service and poolside dining, give you plenty to choose from when hunger strikes. Wake up with a deluxe buffet breakfast at Crown & Anchor, refuel with a light, island-inspired lunch at Marcus', and savor the sunset with tapas and cocktails at 1609.
Whether you're in the mood for a fruity rum swizzle or a fine sipping rum, prepare to be wowed by the variety of bars and beverage services that are available to you. Venture out to the pier where the bartenders at 1609 can whip you up something special or have a drink delivered to your lounge chair as you soak up some rays.
Not only is this hotel located right off Hamilton's main drag, Front Street, it's also a stone's throw from Smatt's Cycle Livery, a popular purveyor of rental scooters. Taxis congregate outside too, if you'd prefer to be driven, and the island's main bus and ferry terminals are only a short walk away.
Reserve a balcony table at Red Steakhouse & Grill (9-minute walk) for harbor views and heavenly surf and turf. For a cozier, more relaxed evening, settle in at Hog Penny Restaurant & Pub (11-minute walk). It's one of Hamilton's oldest establishments and serves a delightful variety of classic British pub food.
Schmooze with Bermuda's business elite on the chic ground level patio at Port O Call Restaurant & Bar (11-minute walk). Drinks aren't cheap but there are usually a variety of happy hour specials. Venture below ground to the locally-kept secret, Coconut Rock (13-minute walk), known for its fun, high energy bartenders and great cocktails. Located next door to Yashi Sushi Bar, it's particularly lively on Friday and Saturday nights.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Sleek and contemporary, this property truly sets the bar for upscale island-style accommodations. While definitely not in everyone's budget, it's a splurge-worthy experience that lives up to the steep price tag. The rooms are outstanding, the service is impeccable, and the world-class amenities speak for themselves.
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