Pristine glistening water, plush sandy beaches and the genuine hospitality of Bahamians are just a few features of gorgeous Nassau. Then there’s the Grand Hyatt Baha Mar.
Just a year after its grand opening, the resort—a sprawling vacation mecca with 1,800 rooms and 230 suites and even luxury villas—is considered the largest of its kind in the Western hemisphere. The expansive onsite convention center and six lavish pools might draw you here in the first place, but the resort also happens to be one of the Caribbean’s top burgeoning culinary destinations with over 20 restaurants and bars serving everything from haute Chinese to sushi to rustic Italian from a James Beard award winner.
That means before you book your room, you'll want to first map out your feasting itinerary. These are the meals and drinks that personally helped us achieve the ultimate island bliss.
Being from Houston, you likely approach all outsider Tex-Mex with a touch of skepticism, but the resort’s retro-inspired Mexican food Airstream, El Jefe, doesn’t disappoint for snacks. Simple and delicious chicken burrito bowls and divine blue coconut margaritas, made with tequila and rum, coconut cream, and lime, make for great beach day fare.
Or do lunch at The Palms Café, which offers plenty of classics with an island twist. We couldn’t resist the lobster grilled cheese sandwich or the delectable conch fritters.
As we mentioned before, there are six pools and you should definitely plan on reserving a coveted cabana (or six). We spent a breezy afternoon in a Drift Pool cabana, which has its own personal host, and access to Drift’s Bar and Pool, a sandwich spot with pan-Latin options like ceviche.
You’ll want to do dinner at 3 Tides Fish House. Their crunchy fish and chips rivals any you’ve ever had before. Plus, the Painkiller—a boozy tiki drink comprised of navy rum, pineapple, coconut and orange juice—is the best finishing touch.
If you’re still standing, head for a nightcap at the Jazz Bar, which serves up some serious 1930s era vibes with a jazz trio and signature martinis, including a beachy Coco Loco, a rum martini with coconut milk and guava puree.
Finish up the night at the sophisticated T2 Cigar Lounge, named because it was founded by Justin Timberlake and Tiger Woods, which—even if you’re not into the incredible cigar selection—is also a cocktail enthusiast’s dream.
After spending our afternoon poolside, chilling in the dark lounge was quite refreshing, though there’s an open-air terrace, too. You’ll want to order the Rum Pine #9, a drink that bartender Peter Szekely, who manages four bars on site, says is inspired by the locals.
“The locals like a little bit of a sweeter taste,” he explained while pouring the drink.
Comprised of nine rums (dark rums and local coconut rum), brown sugar, orange zest, cloves, star anise, peppercorn and vanilla sticks, the infused liquor concoction matures in a huge glass container for three to four days, and is then served with a large garnish of local pineapple. With every sip comes a hint of each ingredient’s flavor profile, and a nod to the folks who are lucky enough to live here year-round. It's the perfect way to unwind from your Bahamian adventures.
From Hobby, Southwest Airlines has flights roundtrip with one stopover in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.