604 Chapters
Medium 9781588436771

Resorts

Blair Howard Hunter Publishing ePub

$$$$ Elbow Beach Hotel, PO Box HM 455, Hamilton, HM BX, Bermuda, phone 441-236-3535, 800-223-7934 (USA), fax 441-236-8043, www.mandarinoriental.com. 
ElbowBeach is one of Mandarin Oriental's acclaimed luxury hotels.  The resort sits on 50 acres of beautifully-landscaped gardens, a mere five minutes from the charming town of Hamilton, and overlooks a pristine beach of pink sand and the ocean. 235 luxurious hotel rooms and suites have been cleverly to form the combined resort and cottage colony that has delighted guests for almost 100 years.
 
There are seven restaurants on site offering a full range of cuisine, from casual to very elegant. Particularly noteworthy are The Deep, an exclusive award winning nightclub, and The Veranda, Bermuda's only rum bar in a traditional cigar club style with the added bonus of a terrace overlooking the SouthShore.
 
The new Spa at ElbowBeach is also definitively worth a visit. There are 4 single and 2 couple private treatment suites, each featuring stunning ocean views, a hand-crafted, granite soaking tub, bamboo flooring and river pebble-lined steam shower.
 
Amenities include nightly entertainment, five championship tennis courts (two lighted for night play), tennis pro and shop. Golf can be arranged at nearby courses. Water sports, boating and game fishing can be arranged by the hotel staff.
 
 
$$$ Grotto Bay Beach Hotel, 11 Blue Hole Hill, Hamilton Parish, CR 04, Bermuda, phone 441-293-8333, 800-582-3190 (USA), 800-463-0851 (Canada), fax 441-293-2306, www.grottobay.com, EP, BP, MAP.
 
GrottoBay is a special favorite of mine. Over the years I've spent many an enjoyable and relaxing stay at this beautiful resort hotel at the eastern end of the island. The resort sits on 21-lush acres of tropical beach front in Hamilton Parish, only a couple of miles from the airport and about 10 minutes from St. Georges.
 
The views from the guest rooms are spectacular. The pastel shades of the hotel's guest units are flanked by the glistening waters of CastleHarbour and the great causeway that leads across it to
The resort's tiny private beach has two secluded coves within an enclosed bay. There's a deep water dock, freshwater pool with swim-up bar and an out-door hot tub. Two 500,000 year-old underground grottos on the property deserve special mention, especially as you are permitted to take a dip amidst the stalactites: a unique aquatic experience to the not so faint-hearted traveler.
 
201 well-appointed rooms are situated in 11, three-storey coral colored lodges, featuring native Bermudian architecture.  The majority of buildings are close to the water's edge, but some require a bit of a hike up a hill. Be sure to ask about the location when reserving a room, especially if you have trouble walking. The best rooms are, of course, those on the lower levels, overlooking the sound. Those on the upper levels offer views of the complex and CastleHarbour beyond and are no less inspiring. All have been refurbished and redecorated and are only a little less luxurious than those of the great resort hotels on the SouthShore. The ground floor rooms are wheelchair accessible (check availability when booking).
 
The restaurants there are three on site cater to most tastes. Easy, informal dining can be found at the Palm Court which has recently undergone major redecoration and renovation. Stately palms, terra cotta tiles and trade wind motifs deliver a tropical atmosphere for casual dining. The menu is island inspired. The Palm Court also features an elegant bar ready to serve a full range of exotic cocktails. The newly renovated Hibiscus Room offers an elegant dining experience amidst soft hues of coral, beige and crisp white echoing tropical sophistication of Bermuda. The menu, which changes daily, includes fine European cuisine with Bermudian flavor. The dress code is smart casual. Jacket and tie are optional. The Bayside Bar & Grill is situated by the pool and is only steps from the sea. Quick foods like hamburgers, hot-dogs, sandwiches and salads are on the menu, as are a savory Island BBQ on Monday evenings and a fresh Seafood Soiree on Thursdays (seasonal and weather permitting).
 
This is a great resort for families with children, especially young ones. If there is a down-side to GrottoBay (and I don't think there is) some might say it is the small beach, and it definitively can become crowded at times. The large pools, patios and lawns, where you can seek all the sunshine you want, more than make up for the lack of sand and surf. I recommend you take advantage of the MAP dining plan. It costs only $58 per person per day and is an excellent value, even with the added 15% gratuity.
 
The hotel has four all-weather tennis courts, a resident tennis pro, a pro shop, and offers water-skiing, snorkeling and parasailing from its own dock. There is a premium 5 Star PADI Dive facility Triangle Diving (www.trianglediving.com) - on site, offering certification courses, advanced courses and daily dives from a boat that is stationed at the resort. Golf can be arranged on any of three nearby courses. Scooter rentals and bus stop are right outside the hotel.
 
 
$$$$ The Fairmont Hamilton Princess, PO Box HM 837, Hamilton, HM CX, Bermuda, 441-295-3000, 800-441-1414 (USA & Canada), fax 441-296-7171, www.fairmont.com/hamilton. EP, BP, MAP.
 
Another great favorite of mine, this luxury resort hotel, fondly referred to by Bermudians as The Pink Palace," is a true gem situated right on the picturesque natural harbor of Hamilton, a perfect location for business executives and shop-oholics alike.  Built in the old world splendor that is Bermuda, the Hamilton Princess was inspired by Princess Louise, the daughter of Queen Victoria. It's a symbol of all that Bermudians hold dear genuine hospitality and timeless quality.
 
There are 410 elegant and beautiful guest rooms and suites of varying sizes and decor, many with private balcony, overlooking the turquoise waters of the harbor dotted with colorful sailboats and sleek yachts. The resort also offers a new Fairmont Gold floor,' which essentially is a hotel within a hotel that features private check-in and concierge, as well as special amenities, such as a private salon with honor bar, cocktail hour canaps, and complimentary breakfast.
 
The resort features a number of different restaurants that will satisfy even the most sophisticated palate. The meals prepared at Harley's are cooked to perfection and it's no surprise that this restaurant won the Best of Bermuda Gold Award in hotel dining. For travelers looking for a particularly romantic interlude, a candlelight dinner prepared by your very own butler on your private balcony would surely turn into a memory to cherish for a very long time. Afternoon tea, the true British kind and the best in Bermuda, I might add, at the Heritage Court is an event that should not be missed by anyone visiting the island. From the British silver tea sets and Belgian fine china to Italian fine woven linens, everything about the afternoon tea spells elegance and luxury. Heritage Court offers a large selection of fine rums and cigars available for smoking on the terrace.
 
The facilities at this resort include a fitness center and an outdoor freshwater as well as an outdoor saltwater pool. There is complimentary ferry service to its sister hotel, the Southampton Princess, which offers a private beach club, a golf course, 11 all-weather tennis courts (including seven lighted courts), fishing and water sports at the deep-water dock, and a full range of nightly entertainment.

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Clothing & Dress

Blair Howard Hunter Publishing ePub

Bermudians are fairly stiff-jointed about what's acceptable and what's not. Bad language in public is very much frowned upon. Scanty dress is also unacceptable: those wearing bikini tops and skimpy shorts on city streets will receive a friendly warning from the local bobby. For men, shorts worn in public should not be cut much higher than an inch above the knee. A shirt should always be worn in public. Casual sportswear is accepted everywhere.

Bermuda shorts, the famous island tradition, are still worn by men in every walk of life. These long shorts" were introduced to the islands by British military personnel around the turn of the century. Nowadays during the summer, you'll see policemen, complete with English bobby's hat and Bermuda shorts, directing traffic or ticketing speeders. The sight of a banker in a business suit - white shirt, conservative tie, trousers" an inch above the knee, tall socks above the calf, and a pair of highly polished shoes - is a little surprising at first.

In the evenings you'll need to dress more formally. Ladies can wear a cocktail dress, and a suit and tie is required for men at most restaurants and hotel dining rooms. Winter evenings can also be a little cool so, if you like to walk, pack a light sweater or jacket.

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Medium 9781588438188

The Frozen World Of Glaciers

Norton, Clark Hunter Publishing ePub

Glaciers begin to form when tons and tons of snow accumulate on mountaintops and are then squeezed and solidified into huge, incredibly heavy expanses of ice. The force of gravity then pulls the glaciers downhill into valleys, where they turn into massive, moving rivers of ice. As they grow by accumulating ice, glaciers are labeled as "advancing" and as they shrink - melting faster than they accumulate snow and ice - they are labeled as "retreating." Alaska - which has a remarkable 100,000 glaciers - currently has both advancing and retreating glaciers, and, over time, an advancing glacier can become a retreating one, or vice versa (the Hubbard Glacier is a good current example). Retreating glaciers produce higher sea levels, making them one of the major threats of global warming. As one NPS ranger quips sardonically, "Never buy land downstream from a glacier." 

Whether advancing or retreating, most glaciers move slowly - at a "glacial" pace, if you will - usually no more than a few feet a day. Some, however, move much faster. The Columbia Glacier near the Gulf of Alaska is reported to have reached a record velocity by retreating more than 100 feet per day in 1999. No matter their speed, each time glaciers move, they resculpt the landscape below them. One major result is the fjords you see in Alaska: valleys carved by glaciers that are then flooded with sea water. A less scenic result is moraines: mounds of crushed rock, silt and other debris that glaciers deposit along their sides as they move. Moraines often make glaciers look "dirty" around the edges, but this is a strictly natural phenomenon and doesn't detract from their overall beauty once you get up close enough to view the details. Rather than solid blocks of ice, you'll see that the glaciers' faces, as their front walls are called, are scored by deep fissures, pocked with ice caves at the water's edge and topped by jagged spires and rounded arches. Often a stunning deep blue, glaciers are awesome both in appearance and sheer power.  

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Medium 9781588439390

Grand Bahama

Blair Howard Hunter Publishing ePub

Grand Bahamas is a favorite with shoppers and couples.

Grand Bahama island is indeed a grand destination, starting with the city ofFreeport . Stroll the streets of this bustling port and enjoy shopping for international and locally made goods.

The Port Lucaya Marketplace and Marina offers shops selling perfumes, clothing and crafts, and usually has live music along its outdoor waterfront. You'll find goods from around the globe at the International Bazaar, and nearby the Bahamas Arts and Crafts Market sells locally made jewelry and baskets. The bazaar and market are adjacent to the Resort at Bahamia (formerly the Bahamas Princess Resort and Casino), where you can try your luck at table games or slot machines.

The city of Freeport/Lucaya was established just over 40 years ago as a tax-free base for trading nations of the west.

The seabed surrounding the Bahamas is dotted with "blue holes," deep, seemingly bottomless holes in the sea that are easily seen from the air.

These holes were formed when an underwater mountain range filled with glaciers during the Ice Age. As the glaciers grew, water levels dropped and the land peeked up from the sea. Once the glaciers melted, the seafloor became pocked with numerous holes and underground caverns.

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Medium 9781588438690

Fredericksburg

Norman Renouf Hunter Publishing ePub

Where the Battles are Civil & Surrender is Sweet

Twenty-five years ago this town was the last place one would have considered for a romantic weekend. Although we came with low expectations, what we discovered was a delightful surprise. Sitting just to the east of Interstate 95 - almost halfway between Washington DC and Richmond - Fredericksburg has capitalized on its history, encouraging the spread of antique and specialty shops, restaurants and cafs, bed and breakfasts and inns. In the process, it has acquired a charming, low-key atmosphere.

There are a number of noteworthy hotels in and around Fredericksburg. Flexibility may be necessary, however, as most have a limited number of rooms. We would recommend one of the following:

In the very center of town, at 711 Caroline Street opposite the visitors' center, is an imposing brick building that fronts directly on the sidewalk.The Richard Johnston Inn was constructed toward the end of the 18th century and became home to Fredericksburg's mayor from March 1809 to March 1810. Susan Williams is the proprietor. She has ensured that the six bedrooms, two suites and public rooms - each decorated with antiques and reproductions - retain the character of that age, while providing all of the modern amenities. Each morning, guests are lured to the large Federal-style dining room by the appetizing aroma of freshly baked breads and muffins, served on tables laid with fine period china, silver and linens. Since the inn is actually a bed and breakfast, no other meals are available. Prices range from $95 to $145, according to the room. Included in the tariff is off-street parking, but neither pets nor smoking are permitted. Reservations may be made by calling(540) 899-7606.

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