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Treat Yourself to a Caribbean Vacay at Baha Mar

This place was *made* for long weekends.

bahamas resort
Khadija Horton

If you’re in desperate need of sun, sand, relaxation, really good food, and a sh*t ton of cocktails, you’ve come to the right place, my friend. I’m here with your solution—and that’s Baha Mar. I visited the Bahamian mega resort a few months ago and let me tell you, it was true tropical beach vacation bliss, the trip we all deserve after the chaos that has been the past two years.

Baha Mar was built for long weekends, especially if you live on the East Coast. The resort is a 15-minute drive from the Nassau International Airport on the island of New Providence in the Bahamas. And once you arrive at Baha Mar, you’ll never have to leave. The resort has everything: Insta-worthy pools, a pristine beach, world-class dining, an epic water park, a stunning spa, and a casino, all on 1,000+ acres of ridiculous gorgeous property. Keep scrolling to read my thoughts on Baha Mar, one of the best Bahamas resorts—plus all the best places to hang, eat, drink, and chill TF out while you’re there.

(P.S. The writer received a comped stay/meals/spa treatments/experiences in order to write this review.)

Where you’re staying

Baha Mar has three hotels to choose from. There’s the family-friendly Grand Hyatt ($), the swanky SLS ($$), and the ultra-luxe Rosewood ($$). They’re all situated within the Baha Mar compound along with a bunch of pools, restaurants, bars, and other cool amenities. My husband (hi, Rob) and I stayed at the SLS and it was amazing. The spacious all-white room had two (!!) showers, a massive lounge area with a kitchen and washer/dryer, a plush king bed, and ample outdoor space to take in the resort views. And the SLS lobby? An airy wood and stone lounge space that turns into a chic bar at night. I would say the SLS is the most trendy/hip hotel of the three options at Baha Mar, but you don’t need to be an influencer-type to fit in (although you’ll see plenty of them—content ops abound).

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What you’re doing

Lounging by the pool

There are so many different pools at Baha Mar it’s dizzying (I counted eight-plus while I was there), but if you’re staying at the SLS, you’ll have access to a private pool just off the lobby. The vibe is very much Miami day club—loud house music, buckets of Veuve, and a bunch of 20- and 30somethings in designer swimwear. Super fun for a friends’ weekend but not exactly my scene otherwise, so Rob and I made our way over to Baha Bay Beach Club. This place is the most glorious! The infinity pool is massive and overlooks the ocean, the lounge chairs are ridiculously comfortable, and there’s ample shade. There’s a $100 minimum to get chairs at Baha Bay Beach Club (more if you want a day bed or cabana), but you can easily spend that toward your food and drink tab so it’s not really a big deal, IMO.

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Hanging at the beach

I am a beach girl at heart, so every morning, I took a walk along Cable Beach (that’s the name of the beach that Baha Mar sits on) with my coffee and then plopped myself on one of the lounge chairs with a book (highly recommend The Therapist for an easy beach read). The sand is sugary white and the ocean is clear, calm, and warm—like a bathtub.

Exploring the water park

Forget whatever image of water park you currently have in your brain (Hurricane Harbor, anyone??) because Baha Bay’s Waterpark is on another level. It’s gigantic, super clean, and everything is brand new. Rob and I spent one morning there floating in the lazy river, racing down the tube slides, and attempting to body board on the wave simulator. We literally had the most fun. Give yourself a few hours there to bop around and do the same.

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Relaxing at the spa

Rob and I made a full day out of all the wellness activities and spa services Baha Mar’s ESPA spa has to offer, which I highly recommend if (1) it takes more than an hour-long massage for you to truly relax 🙋‍♀️ and (2) you have a rainy day in the forecast.

To kick things off, we started the day with a yoga class on a private terrace overlooking the ocean. It was like a light Vinyasa class—good stretching but not strenuous. Then we headed to the IV lounge for a 30-minute Infuz treatment. Basically, you sit in a big comfy chair and a doctor sets you up with a drip full of vitamins and minerals that restore your hydration levels and might even help boost your immunity. Great if you are super active or had too many rum punches the night before.

ESPA treatment room
Courtesy Image
ESPA lobby
Courtesy Image

Next up were the massages. We opted for the 80-minute Mindful Massage for Two—it started with a few minutes of breath work and visualization and then your therapist does a deep-tissue massage in different zones of your body—from your feet to your scalp. Eighty minutes later and your whole body feels like Jell-O.

We ended our wellness day with an afternoon meditation session. I’ve never actually meditated before, but WOW—clearly I have been missing out. My brain went to that peaceful place where you’re half awake and half asleep and it was soooo nice. Rob started snoring half way through, so I think it’s safe to say the session was a success for him too.

Where you’re drinking and eating

The sheer number of options can be overwhelming, so I broke down the must-try spots for you:

The best for quick bites

  • Da’ Poke Bowl Shack—grab-and-go poke bowls that you can take to the pool or beach
  • Cleo—good spot for avo toast and a coffee in the SLS lobby
  • Streetbird on the Beach—beachside food truck serving wings and chicken sandwiches

    The best bars

    • Manor Bar—handcrafted cocktails in a cozy, library-like lounge
    • Monkey Bar—go for a glass of wine or champs before dinner
    • Costa—the perfect margs in a tropical indoor/outdoor setting
      sls baha mar
      Monkey Bar
      Courtesy Image
      rosewood baha mar costa
      Courtesy Image

      The best restaurants

      • Carna—high-end steak house from Darrio Cecchini (do yourself a favor and splurge on the Australian filet mignon and alllll the sides)
      • Cafe Boulud—fancy french cuisine from Daniel Boulud (the loup de mer, aka branzino, is *chef’s kiss*)
      • Marcus at Baha Mar—fresh fish and steaks from Marcus Samuelsson
        (order the seafood tower and Yes Chef cocktail for two)
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        When you’re going

        I visited Baha Mar in late October. It’s technically considered the off-season, but there are a few perks to going at this time. For one, the flights are pretty cheap (my round trip ticket on United Airlines was $300), there are minimal crowds, and the prices are a bit less expensive. Plus, the weather is warm—the air temp *and* the ocean temp were a balmy 82 degrees. The downside? Rain and clouds. We did experience showers each afternoon, so if you want the highest chance of clear, sunny skies on your entire vacay, try to book for sometime between December and April. According to weather ~experts~ and the locals, you’re basically guaranteed a beach day every day.

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