NASSAU, Bahamas -- The accommodations scene here runs the gamut
from intimate inns to posh resorts.
My home base on a recent visit was the British Colonial Hilton,
a property that caters to both business and leisure travelers.
Its proximity to banking institutions plus ample meetings space
draws a large business crowd, according to general manager Michael
"The mix is about evenly split between business travelers,
couples and singles," Hooper said.
Occupancy prior to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks ran above 70%,
Hooper said, with the U.S. market accounting for 47% of bookings,
particularly from the Northeast.
The Hilton's location in the heart of Nassau and its facilities
are big drawing cards.
A ballroom, banquet room, boardroom and five meeting rooms can
handle groups of up to 650 people.
Accommodations geared specifically to business travelers include a
business floor with six guest rooms and an executive level floor
with 47 rooms and seven suites.
All guest rooms are equipped with oversize desks and two phone
lines with modems and Internet access.
Facilities for leisure travelers include a private beach, a
fitness center and the Azure Spa, which opened a year ago.
"The addition of the spa opened up a whole new market for us,"
Azure Spa pampers guests with facials, massages and hydrotherapy
treatments. Rates run from $40 to $90 per service.
A sampling of other properties in and around Nassau follows:
• Clients who prefer more intimate lodgings do well at Compass
Point and Graycliff Hotel, both 20-unit properties.
Colorful Compass Point attracts a fair share of celebrities as
well as regular folks.
Through Nov. 15, nightly rates for one-bedroom units start at
$245 per room, double. Villas begin at $625 per night.
Graycliff is known for its wine cellar and inventory of more
than 250,000 bottles, as well as a selection of seven signature
cigars made on-property since 1998.
The hotel also has two restaurants, a full-service spa and three
Daily winter rates, valid from Nov. 16 through April 30, start
at $170 for two.
• The Association of Nassau Resorts is a collection of five
properties in the Cable Beach area of Nassau, representing a total
of 2,775 rooms.
The properties are Breezes Bahamas, Nassau Beach Hotel, Nassau
Marriott Resort, Radisson Cable Beach Resort and Sandals Royal
Bahamian Resort & Spa.
Each property offers special deals or discounted rates this fall
Seven-night rates at Breezes Bahamas start at $2,693 per couple
Through Dec. 22, Nassau Beach Hotel offers rates from $120 per
night and a fourth night free.
Through Nov. 15, Nassau Marriott pays 15% commission on nightly
rates, which start at $145 per room, double.
Radisson Cable Beach Resort pays 13% commission through Dec. 22
on daily Super Saver rates, which start at $139 per person,
Sandals reduced its published rates by 30% in all room
categories through Dec. 15.
Prices for a standard room start at $325 per night, double,
while suite accommodations begin at $385 for two.
• Also in Nassau is the 185-room Holiday Inn Junkanoo Beach
Hotel, with three-night, air-inclusive plans from $299 per person,
double, through Dec. 20.
Driftwood Vacations, which offers packages for the property,
features a $50 discount off published rates for bookings made at
least 60 days in advance.
To book, call (800) 422-7466.