For us Bermuda looked like a way of getting to a beautiful island in under 2 hours – alas a mechanical problem, circling to burn off fuel and waiting for catering clearance did mean we could have been standing on the Champs Elysees by the time we actually made it to our hotel.
When we did finally arrive it was almost 9pm, so unfortunately we missed getting to truly see the island on our way to our hotel, but what I can say is our welcome was delightful and a real sign of things to come. Our taxi driver was very friendly and lightened our mood immediately!Also, FYI our flight back was very quick & makes us definitely want to go back because it is so close from NY/NJ area!!
We arrived at our hotel late and checked in to the Gold Lounge and our room, which was a garden suite. The room was clean and felt recently renovated which was very nice in a country that has a slight reputation of being dated, which some find charming, but the modern feel to our room was very welcome. We were in the Ponciana wing, which had easy access to the family/infinity pool. The pool is great and warm and has a beautiful view. The only issue is that the Adult Only pool is not heated ( from other reviews) so you find lots of adults taking up limited space as well as a few being seemingly annoyed at the chaos of children splashing around.
Bermuda as a whole is expensive so having access to the Gold Lounge was a huge benefit, with a very hearty breakfast on offer, drinks and snacks through the day, afternoon tea, which included little sandwiches and scones, and a selection of canapés and desserts in the evening. Definitely worth it!! There is a great grocery store just short walk from the hotel as well to load up on essentials too. We also ate at The Marcus in the hotel, whose use of the BeyondMeat burger (my obsession for plant based burgers!) was AMAZING and also had incredible seafood. The service was top notch, which is a commentary on everyone at the hotel from the cleaning staff to the servers and the gold lounge staff.
The private beach is a 15 minute bus ride away, which leaves every half an hour. The hotel provides a bunch of floats, as well as water canoes and paddleboards at the beach, which is a really cool and helpful amenity! The beach actually stays relatively quiet compared to the others along the coast, which is a definite plus! The water is calm and you seem to be able to walk really far out into the water before it becomes too deep to stand. The facilities at the beach are amazing with lovely changing rooms, great food, and air conditioned toilets. Also there is even a play area for kids-- always a plus!
Back up at the hotel and there are some options for eating out nearby. The best option we found was this great Indian restaurant called Ruby Murry’s, which had truly excellent Indian food, at very reasonable prices. Don’t be put off by the fact it is hidden away down an alley, it was easily the best option in Hamilton!
Overall we really enjoyed the hotel, the combination of service, the fact it felt more modern than the rest of the island, beautiful pink sunsets, and the great food options made for a great stay!
The Fairmont Southampton is a step back in time, looking beautifully pink from the outside and for the most part exuding a type of class that speaks to an older generation and one of their major customers – retired people who love to golf -- although there were plenty of families. The hotel feels a bit dated, but we stayed in the most recently refurbished rooms (floors 3 and 4).
The beach is 2 minute bus ride down the hill, which you can walk, but the thought of the walk back up the hill after a day on the beach is enough to grab your seat on the bus. This beach is definitely busier ( we came in early August) and there are watersports amenities for purchase. It has a more interesting coves to explore, a little store, and a better priced food option with a great Happy Hour. (the food was always very good at the restaurants) The hotel overall definitely had more families so the beach had lots of children for Jayne to play with, and again the water was warm with limited waves so very safe and enjoyable. We really LOVED spending our time at the beach! Also its right next to Horseshoe bay beach which is very popular and beautiful.
The dining options are all in house, with The Beach Club, being at the beach and an apparent favorite of many guests. Eating while staying at this hotel will form a large part of your overall budget, so keep this in mind and research menus before your arrival to suit your tastes. I do want to say all restaurants were very specific in making sure they accommodated any allergies which can be very important for some families.
Overall by the end I was in love with Bermuda and would absolutely go back ( I didn't want to leave!!) The lack of modernity in some cases is a bit of a culture shock, but it absolutely grows on you and you fall in love with the wonderful island.
xo, Care + Tom
*This post is in partnership with Fairmount Princess & Fairmount Southampton, but all opinions are my own!