HAMILTON, Bermuda -- Within days of Hurricane Fabian's unwelcome
visit on Sept. 5, a good bit of Bermuda was back in business, but
some hotels, attractions and golf courses remained closed, and
there were no cruise ships on the horizon.
And as Bermuda continued its cleanup, Hurricane Isabel, a
powerful Category Four storm, churned through the Atlantic toward
the Caribbean with landfall expected Sept. 14 or 15, prompting
cruise lines to rearrange their itineraries once again.
Mid-September traditionally is the peak activity period of the
Atlantic's six-month hurricane season, which runs through Nov.
Bermuda's south coast bore the brunt of the storm and sustained
the heaviest damage, but initial estimates suggest that most of it
can be fixed.
"Considering the strength and duration of Hurricane Fabian,
we're proud to have withstood the storm in the manner we did," said
Renee Webb, minister of tourism, telecommunications and e-commerce.
"We anticipate a full recovery and look forward to welcoming
Closed for repairs
Golf courses sustained "little damage," and most were expected
to be open this week, according to the Department of Tourism. The
same was true at midweek of several attractions such as the
aquarium, arboretum and botanical gardens.
A number of hotels remained closed or operating with reduced
services because of storm damage or power outages.
The 400-room Sonesta Beach Resort in Southampton Parish closed
for the winter and will reopen May 1. Guests holding future
bookings will be relocated to other properties, rebooked at a later
date or given full refunds, a spokesman said.
Among other hotels:
• The 593-room Fairmont Southampton Princess, the largest resort
on Bermuda, expects to reopen Nov. 1.
• The 410-room Fairmont Hamilton Princess is open but offering
reduced guest services and will resume taking reservations Sept.
• The 94-room Pink Beach Club & Cottages in Tucker's Town is
closed through March 14. Guests have the option to reschedule their
trips for up to one year from the scheduled departure date.
• The 47-unit Ariel Sands Beach Club will reopen with 35 rooms
by Sept. 22.
Bermuda Airport reopened Sept. 7, but customs and immigration
preclearance for departing passengers was suspended. As a result,
passengers arriving in the U.S. from Bermuda were required to clear
customs and immigration at their U.S. arrival airports.
For that reason, US Airways' flights from Bermuda to
Washington's Reagan National and New York's LaGuardia were
suspended through Sept. 14 and Sept. 15, respectively, because
those airports do not have such facilities for arriving
The customs and immigration facility in Bermuda was expected to
be back in operation this week.
Events scheduled this month and in October, such as the Jazz
Festival, Oct. 8 to 12, may have venue changes, according to a
spokesman for the Bermuda Department of Tourism.
For updates on the island's status, visit www.bermudatourism.com or call (800) BERMUDA.
Cruise ships serving Bermuda altered their itineraries in the
wake of Fabian, shifting itineraries to New England and Canada.
Affected were Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Sea and
Norwegian Majesty; Celebrity's Zenith and Horizon; Royal
Caribbean's Nordic Empress; and Radisson Seven Seas Cruises' Seven
The Radisson ship, which departs from New York on Wednesdays,
avoided Bermuda on its Sept. 10 sailing in favor of New England,
Canada and its regular call in Norfolk, Va.
Meanwhile, cruise-related meetings were held on the island last
week. Bermuda's cruise ports were to reopen Sept. 15, officials
But the cruise lines also were looking southward, to Hurricane
Isabel. Carnival decided to reroute three ships -- the Carnival
Legend, the Carnival Triumph and the Carnival Paradise -- away from
St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, and other eastern Caribbean
NCL said Sept. 11 it was "still evaluating" possible changes for
the Norwegian Dawn.
Princess and Holland America said they were monitoring the
situation with regards to the Grand Princess and the Zuiderdam,
respectively, which have eastern Caribbean itineraries this
To contact reporters Gay Nagle Myers or Rebecca Tobin, send
e-mail to [email protected] or [email protected].