INTERNATIONAL REPORT—Two resorts affected by last year’s hurricanes are on their way back, while two more tropical resorts are revealing their own renovations.
Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve Reopens
Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve has reopened, marking an exciting chapter in the property’s rich legacy as well as in the recovery and resurgence of Puerto Rico. Following a meticulous restoration, the property now includes expanded offerings, amenities and facilities, allowing the celebrated resort to continue to create transformative and personal journeys for all guests.
As a part of Marriott International, Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve has partnered with musical artist and philanthropist Lin-Manual Miranda to support his work in stimulating the Puerto Rican economy and preserving the country’s culture by strengthening and sustaining the local arts community.
Throughout the resort’s opening season, starting now through February 2019, Dorado Beach will donate $10 per room to Miranda’s Flamboyan Arts Fund, which supports all aspects of Puerto Rico’s artistic community, including music, theater, visual arts, dance, literature and youth arts education—critical components of Puerto Rico’s tourism industry and pivotal to the economic recovery of the island.
“Dorado Beach exemplifies the unique qualities of the Reserve brand, which is distinguished for its collection of locally inspired properties that offer heartfelt care and transformative experiences in the most incredible corners of the world,” said Lisa Holladay, global brand leader for Ritz-Carlton Reserve. “With this reopening, the world’s most discerning travelers can once again immerse themselves in the local culture, enjoy unique experiences set apart by human connection and discover this rare estate anew while also supporting the revitalization of Puerto Rico.”
Guests returning to Dorado Beach will find each of the property’s 114 beachfront guestrooms and suites re-imagined with a thoughtful design and refreshed with a color palette that amplifies the natural beauty just beyond their doors.
Encanto Beach Club Bar & Grill will introduce a refreshed dinner menu with coastal cuisine that highlights authentic dishes from the Mediterranean. The property’s beachside restaurant, Positivo Sandbar, will debut an Omakase & Ceviche bar situated directly on the sand. Dorado Beach’s new signature restaurant and bar, COA, will be revealed this December.
Su Casa, Dorado Beach’s five-bedroom villa and former home of historical figure Clara Livingston, will welcome guests starting this December after completing a renovation that will fully modernize the space while maintaining its historical significance and personality.
Secret Bay Resort to Reopen in November
Secret Bay, a secluded Caribbean eco-luxury boutique hotel and Dominica’s only five-star resort, is set to reopen in November.
One year ago, Hurricane Maria made landfall on Dominica, the “Nature Island,” and ownership has been working to restore and enhance the resort since then. The 7-year-old hotel will welcome back guests with updated villas, one new villa and a host of new amenities.
Villas Zabuco I, II & III and Ylang Ylang I & II are being restored to reflect their original designs and optimized for a luxury experience. Each freestanding villa has its own private plunge pool.
The new two-story TiFéy Villa I is a “nature-meets-luxury architectural masterpiece” set high atop the resort’s cliffside. Sustainably built with Guyanese Greenheart hardwood, the 1,356-sq.-ft. has one bedroom and two bathrooms, gourmet kitchen, floor-to-ceiling glass doors, outdoor rain shower, private plunge pool and a rolodex of modern amenities.
A new addition to the property, the resort will feature a centrally located, sit-down restaurant offering seasonal, locally sourced fare and a display kitchen. The restaurant, Zing Zing, will not have a menu; rather, the chef will prepare seasonal dishes based on patrons’ preferences. The hotel will continue its trademark private, in-villa dining and personalized pre-stocking services.
A newly constructed yoga, spa and wellness pavilion will serve as a riverside destination for intimate wellness classes and luxurious spa services. The Gommier Spa will include a private treehouse-style couple’s massage room, while the Bwa Mang Wellness Pavilion will be suspended over the Cario river.
“We can’t wait to welcome back our treasured guests, along with new visitors,” said Gregor Nassief, proprietor of Secret Bay. “Secret Bay was created to serve as a destination for travelers to discover a hidden slice of paradise, retreat in nature and reconnect with life’s most important moments, and we look forward to offering guests that experience once again in November.”
Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort Spa & Casino Unveils $21-Million Transformation
Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort Spa & Casino has completed a top-to-bottom enhancement of its 357 guestrooms and suites as well as its Regency Club.
Spearheaded by Kansas City-based BLUR Workshop Designs, the $21-million redesign introduces modern accommodations, while still paying homage to the island’s Dutch Colonial architecture and colorful Caribbean accents.
“Looking out through the layers of waterfalls, swaying palm trees and onto the brilliant blue ocean outside of Hyatt Regency Aruba’s property, there is no question that you are at a stunning tropical resort and a sense of calm relaxation takes over,” said Kelly O’Donnell, designer at Blur Designs. “We wanted to recreate that same experience as guests travel up to their rooms and open the door. Upon entry, the guests will have that same sense of excitement, relaxation and a sense of place that is distinctly Aruba.”
The newly conceptualized guestrooms are bright and airy with white oak furnishings and natural light. Inviting touches include a handwoven, chevron wool rug, plush pillows and bedding, a classic yet contemporary tufted headboard and a large, oversized chaise lounge.
Beyond the guestrooms, the resort has also welcomed a new Regency Club Lounge moved from the resort’s top floor to the ground level for easy access from the pool, beach and casino. Exclusively available to guests of the ninth floor Club Level, the Regency Club Lounge hosts complimentary continental breakfast, evening cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and more personalized concierge services.
BodyHoliday Reopens After Renovation
BodyHoliday in St. Lucia has completed a multimillion-dollar renovation across the property.
In anticipation of the resort’s 30th anniversary this fall, the resort has introduced an enhanced wellness and luxury leisure experience to guests aligned with its core promise “to change people’s lives, one person at a time,” by unveiling refreshed guestrooms and dining venues, an upgraded wellness center and new villas.
As part of the renovation, 76 Luxury Ocean View guestrooms, including dedicated solo traveler rooms, have been refreshed with a lighter, brighter color palette. Guests can anticipate new bay windows and well-appointed furniture including comfortable beds, spacious cupboards, ample mini bars and updated drawer safes. New surround-sound USB speakers allow guests to enjoy their preferred music at the touch of a button. Bathrooms have been enhanced with tropical rainfall showers and sliding doors for a truly luxurious experience.
A new, eco-friendly air conditioning system has been installed in all guestrooms to improve the quality of the air. By introducing natural air into the rooms, guests are able to sleep peacefully and restore their energy for participation in the various daily wellness activities.
Entirely new to BodyHoliday are two luxury villas, Villa Lara and Villa Calypso, which join the existing Villa Firefly. Both new villas include an apartment and a junior suite that can be rented separately or as a full unit for a more private, bespoke experience. The larger apartment includes a master bedroom with a walk-in closet, a private pool with a deck, a veranda and outdoor dining room, as well as a terrace. The junior suite will feature a balcony, foyer and master bedroom.
Accompanying the accommodations updates are enhanced dining experiences to complement the resort’s wellness programming. TAO, the resort’s Asian-fusion fine dining restaurant, has been fully refurbished to introduce a more modern feel with an entirely new shape and re-envisioned entrance, as well as a newly installed outdoor deck where guests can relax with a cocktail prior to their evening meal. The restaurant has also introduced an extended organic menu, along with a new wine cellar in the dining room.
In addition, The Deli, the resort’s casual open-air restaurant serving healthful lunch and snacks, has introduced a new sushi counter, as well as a juice bar offering fresh, organic juices and made-to-order smoothies.