Bermuda: The Flower of the Atlantic
|Bliss just beyond the East Coast: Bermuda's Jobston Beach (Corbis)|
Anglophiles in search of some much needed sun, sand, and surf to mix with their affection for British culture will find the best of both worlds in Bermuda. Located in the Atlantic Ocean about 900 miles east of Charleston, South Carolina, Bermuda boasts stunning natural beauty to go with its enviable climate. High temperatures that rarely climb above 85 or drop below 70 make this island ideal for couples that want all the benefits of a tropical refuge with none of the overbearing heat and humidity.
One of the island's most storied properties is The Fairmont Southampton (101 South Shore Rd.). This luxury hotel sits at the island's highest point and offers harbor views, spa services, expansive golf grounds, tennis courts, world-class restaurants, and scooters for guests who wish to explore the island on their own. The Fairmont Southampton also presents the Engaging Martini Package, which includes a one-carat engagement ring among its list of romantic features.
If opulence is your idea of a good time, you would do well to book a room at Elbow Beach Bermuda (60 South Shore Rd.), a Mandarin Oriental property. In addition to 50 acres of gardens, a private beach, and proximity to Hamilton, Bermuda's capital city, Elbow Beach lays claim to six restaurants, a luxurious spa, and the popular Deep nightclub.
Whether or not you choose to stay at The Fairmont Southampton, consider treating your significant other to an evening at the hotel's posh Newport Room (441.238.8000). This restaurant should be high on your to-do list. Additionally, the Fairmont Southampton's Waterlot Inn (441.238.8000), one of Southampton Parish's oldest and most renowned restaurants, has had praise heaped by Mark Twain and Eleanor Roosevelt. The award-winning Aqua (34 Shore Rd., 441.236.1010) serves up hearty samplings of both Bermudian and international cuisine. It's located in the Ariel Sands Hotel, co-owned by Michael Douglas.
For a taste of Bermuda's famous cocktail culture, check out Hamilton's Lemon Tree Café (Queen St., 441.292.0235) or the Pickled Onion (53 Front St., 441.295.2263, www.thepickledonion.com). A little further up the street, be prepared to make your move on the dance floor of the trendy Ozone club (69 Front St., 441.292.3379) or the more laid-back Docksiders (121 Front St., 441.296.3333).
But there's more to do out here in the middle of the Atlantic than romp in your hotel, sip cocktails, and enjoy fine cuisine. Awaken the senses with a walk among the hibiscus and bougainvillea of aromatic Bermuda Botanical Gardens (169 South Rd., 441.236.4201). Or explore Bermuda's many out-of-the-way bays, coves, and inlets by renting a double kayak from the Pompano Beach Club Watersports Centre (441.234.0222 or 800.343.4155). Or, climb the 185 steps to the top of Gibbs Hill Lighthouse (441.238.0524), a peaceful spot with spectacular views perfecting for sharing with that someone special (and popping out that diamond dazzler?).
At some point, the splendid vacation to Bermuda must end. But know that this island is a short hop from the East Coast, and thank your lucky evening stars that you opted to spend time with the one you love here, and nowhere else.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication