Editor's note: Those who choose to travel are strongly encouraged to check local government restrictions, rules, and safety measures related to COVID-19 and take personal comfort levels and health conditions into consideration before departure.
A pair of iconic Bahamas hotels will reopen next month, just in time to spend the holidays soaking up the sun and turquoise waters — with strict safety protocols above and beyond what the island requires.
Atlantis Paradise Island will open first on Dec. 10th, requiring visitors to vacation in place on the hotel’s nearly 200 acres during their stay to reduce potential exposure to the virus, the hotel shared with Travel + Leisure. And with everything from five miles of white sand beaches to multiple pools, and an over-the-top waterpark where guests are shot through an underwater clear tunnel in a shark-filled lagoon, there’s little reason to leave the resort in the first place.
“We are so excited to welcome back our loyal guests, families, and new visitors to experience Atlantis Paradise Island and reconnect with themselves and their loved ones,” Audrey Oswell, the resort’s president, and managing director, said in a statement, adding, “our highest priority is and will always be to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of our guests, team members, and community.”
To start, Atlantis Paradise Island will offer guests their first night free if they book by Nov. 22 and stay at least two nights between opening day and Dec. 17. And to make it even easier for people to get there, the resort partnered with JetBlue to offer non-stop charter flights to Nassau, Bahamas from Newark, N.J,. in January as part of a seven-night stay.
The Grand Hyatt Baha Mar, which is set to open on Dec. 17, went one step further, requiring guests to take a free rapid antigen test upon arrival, the hotel shared with T+L. The resort — known for its on-site flamingos — will first open at 60% capacity and give guests flexibility when booking, allowing them to cancel up to 24 hours before arriving.
“Resilient as ever, the Baha Mar team has persevered by looking toward a bright future, dedicated to preparing the resort for a successful reopening this December,” Graeme Davis, the resort’s president, said in a statement.
The resort has implemented their Baha Mar Commitment to Wellbeing which ensures guests that health and safety protocols, "which exceed recommendations of The Centers for Disease Control" are followed at all of their properties.
The Bahamas, which requires everyone wear masks in public, allows visitors to skip the islands’ mandatory quarantine if they test negative for COVID-19 within five days before their departure, and then take a second, rapid antigen test on day 5 of their visit. Visitors also have to apply for a Bahamas Health Travel Visa and starting Nov. 14, will have to opt-in to mandatory COVID-19 health insurance.
Children 10 years old and younger do not need to get tested prior to arrival.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she’s not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.
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