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21 Reasons Nassau Is Perfect for Your Next Group Vacation

photo: Gaby Rguez
Stop everything you’re doing, grab your bathing suit and your best friends, and head to Nassau. Although this archipelago has always been known for its natural beauty, in recent years there’s been an incredible surge of new hospitality concepts that have transformed this slice of paradise into a cultural and culinary hotspot. Leading the transformation? Baha Mar, a luxury hotel complex that boasts three hotels as well as the Caribbean's largest casino, which basically means it’s more than just a place to rest your head but rather a small city for your group to explore.

Whether it’s over-the-top or under-the-radar you’re looking for, read on to discover why a trip to the capital of the Bahamas is guaranteed to pique even the most refined traveler’s interest.

Reporter: Dylan Essertier
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STAY

Nassau, Bahamas
Find island breezes, airy interiors and ocean views for days at nearly every hotel on Nassau. From ultra modern Baha Mar properties to boutique luxury estates, there’s something for every type of group whether you’re more into gambling or lounging.
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$350 avg. room rate
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Grand Hyatt Baha Mar learn more

Located in the center of the sprawling Baha Mar complex is the Grand Hyatt Baha Mar, which features  1,800 contemporary rooms, a 30,000 square-foot destination spa, and 7 pools. In other words? It’s impossible to get bored inside this massive amenity-packed paradise. And yet, thanks to thoughtful interiors by Los Angeles based Dianna Wong Architecture, there’s no shortage of luxurious charm to keep your group smiling during your stay.
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SLS Baha Mar learn more

A stay at this sleek 299 room getaway means chic accommodations, creative cocktails, and a buzzing poolside scene filled with trendy jet-setters from around the world. The surplus of decadence gives the property a boutique, nightclub-like ambience, while access to the larger Baha Mar property means you can enjoy incredible amenities such as the glitzy casino and clutches of dining options. Win win.
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Rosewood Baha Mar learn more

Beloved for its sophisticated venues around the world, including the Carlyle in New York and Hôtel de Crillon in Paris, Rosewood once again does not disappoint with its stunning Baha Mar property. Opt for this 237 room sanctuary if its elegance you’re after, as all rooms feature luxurious linens, as well as private balconies with outdoor living areas. For something really special for your group, experience one of Rosewood Baha Mar’s four villas (with three bedroom and six bedroom options available) as each feature a decadent private plunge pool.
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Photo: theavecnoir
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$605 avg. room rate
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The Island House learn more

With 30 rooms, The Island House has a cozy and contemporary feel thanks to an aesthetic that utilizes natural palettes such as lightly colored coral stone and pecky cypress (a common material used throughout the Caribbean). Oh, and did we mention this gem just happens to be designed by New York-based Champalimaud, the design firm responsible for dreaming up the aesthetic for one of our other favorite properties: Troutbeck, in Hudson Valley. To really make the most of The Island House’s soothing vibes make your way to the property’s Bamford Spa, where individually-crafted treatments featuring a luxurious array of botanical products are just waiting for you to enjoy.
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The Ocean Club, A Four Seasons Resort

Nassau, Bahamas
With its Michelin-starred restaurant and Versailles-inspired lawns, The Ocean Club is one of the most opulent options available in Nassau. Choose from more than 100 accommodations, including several cottages and villas, hang out by any of the three swimming pools, or get your best tennis whites on for a round at any of the six tennis courts located on property. Golf lovers can also enjoy the adjacent Tom Weiskopf-designed golf course, which stretches over 7000 yards and offers stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean.
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EAT + DRINK

Nassau, Bahamas
Beach shacks, glimmering restaurants and day-to-night spots are dotted across Nassau ensuring your group is watered and fed around the clock. From Middle Eastern inspired dining to coffee on the sand, your food (and drink) loving pals will be right at home.
Photo: SLS Baha Mar
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Monkey Bar at SLS Baha Mar learn more

After a long day in the sun there’s no better feeling than grabbing a frosty drink and unwinding in Monkey Bar at the ever-so-hip SLS Baha Mar. Inside this airy, open-concept indoor piazza, expect to find soothing white tones and a creative cocktail list that includes refreshing libations such as the Lotus Flower with Grey Goose, blackberries, St. Germain Elderflower, and fresh lemon, as well as the Moroccan Dawn, with Bombay Sapphire, Aperol, orange Bitters and mint leaves. Can’t you just taste vacation thinking about it?
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Photo: SLS Baha Mar
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Katsuya by Starck at SLS Baha Mar learn more

What happens when you mix master sushi chef Katsuya Uechi and a design maven Philippe Starck? Katsuya, one of the world’s hottest Japanese establishments. Inside the Baha Mar venue speciality dishes infuse local flavors, from conch-oyaki featuring local conch prepared Japanese style to desserts of baba rum with Robata pineapple, Bahamian spiced rum, and rum raisin ice cream. Wash it all down with a white grapefruit cosmo and you’ll be perfectly primed to get the night started.
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Photo: SLS Baha Mar
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Cleo Mediterraneo at SLS Baha Mar learn more

Gather your group for some mezze at Award-winning Chef Danny Elmaleh’s Cleo Mediterraneo, where Middle Eastern favorites such as creamy hummus and feta & labneh are ideal for sharing. When it comes to mains, you can’t go wrong with one of Cleo’s tagines, served on hand painted plates from Morocco with decadent flavors including lamb with apricots and and fish with flavorful saffron. Did we mention the chic white-on-white beach decor is just as winning?
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Stix Noodle Bar at Grand Hyatt Baha Mar learn more

For a unique fusion of Chinese and Bahamian ingredients, Stix at Grand Hyatt Baha Mar has you covered. We love the hand-pulled noodles and dim sum, with dishes such as lobster, clam, and sea conch with  hot & sour noodle soup and the signature braised wagyu beef rib among the most memorable items you’ll find on the menu.
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Photo: sssunraykiss
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Café Matisse

Nassau, Bahamas
Although Matisse was technically French, at this eatery you’ll find an abundance of dishes that pay tribute to Bel Pease (the beautiful country, I.E., none other than Italia). Matisse’s menu changes every six months, with dishes such as homemade red pappardelle with wild mushrooms, light rosemary, and creamy parmesan sauce, and lobster tail with white asparagus, turnips, and Campari scented sauce as mouthwatering as they are inventive.
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Manor Bar at Rosewood Baha Mar learn more

Inside this polished salon at Rosewood Baha Mar, classic mixing techniques blend together with island flavors to create lively cocktails such as the Island Bliss with watermelon and rosemary-infused vodka, St. Germain, and watermelon juice, as well as the Timeless Traveler stirred up with gin, lime juice, toasted coconut flakes, and egg whites. Trust us, it’s truly elegant vacation cocktail-ing at its finest.
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Photo: Sherice Major
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Biggity

Nassau, Bahamas
Biggity began by creating a unique pepper sauce in the 1980s, and since then has transformed into a full scale restaurant. Don’t visit without trying their infamous dip which includes cheese, onions, tomatoes, jalapenos, and yes you guessed it, their signature biggety pepper sauce. If it’s something healthy you’re after, hearty beet and feta salads will do just the trick. Insider tip: whether its hearty or healthy, be sure to round out your order with Biggity’s locally-brewed beer.
Photo:Grand Hyatt Baha Mar
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Blue Note Jazz Lounge at Grand Hyatt Baha Mar learn more

It’s hard to resist a jazz bar that dreams up nights such as Martini Monday (special martinis for only $8) and Wine Down Wednesday (an evening dedicated to special pricing on handpicked wines from around the world). Throw in the chance to nibble on appetizers such as Caribbean lobster bruschetta and Bahamian-style petit fours, and Blue Note Jazz quickly checks off all the boxes for an oh-so-classy evening on the town.
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John Watling's Distillery Tour & Tasting

Nassau, Bahamas
To really get the essence of the Bahamas, you must become an expert in their small-batch rums. Thanks to John Watling’s ‘Spirit of the Bahamas’ tour you’ll have just that opportunity when you explore the history of this signature Bahamian cocktail by spending the day visiting a dedicated museum, estate, and tavern, which involves plenty of taste tasting.

Louis & Steen's New Orleans Coffeehouse

Nassau, Bahamas
What will you find at the Bahamas first speciality coffeehouse? Clean, balanced, and unique flavors of brew brought in from around the globe. Oh, and don’t worry if coffee isn’t your thing this adorable venue also serves a Frozen Green Tea Lemonade with Japanese matcha and freshly-picked lemons guaranteed to leave you refreshed, delighted, and returning for more.
Photo: Social House
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Social House

Nassau, Bahamas
At Social House, dishes range from sushi and lobster with black truffle oil to baos (try the calamari bao for something truly unique). Apart from the variety of flavors, the smart ambiance and attentive staff make this a perennial go-to when it comes to dining in Nassau.
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Bahamian Cookin’

Nassau, Bahamas
Head to the Bahamas oldest restaurant and bar for a hearty helping of conch fritters, cracked lobster, and surf and turf. When it comes to ambiance, the casual, home-style feeling of this classic cooking joint will make you feel as if you’re dining in your Bahamian grandmother’s kitchen. Although it’s nothing fancy, it’s also nothing short of amazing.
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EXPERIENCE

Nassau, Bahamas
Beaches, beaches and more beaches. When you’ve had your fill of lounging and sun, try chartering a boat to Rose Island, strolling around Bay Street or exploring Clifton Heritage Park.
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Junkanoo Beach

Nassau, Bahamas
Also known as the Western Esplanade, Junkanroo Beach connects fellow beaches Arawak Cay and Long Wharf. Within minutes of downtown Nassau and the cruise ship dock, this popular spring breaker destination is also a Bahamian favorite for cookouts. Lounge, swim and soak up quintessential Nassau life at this stunning stretch of beach. 
Photo: Mabel Cova
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Charter a Boat to Rose Island

Nassau, Bahamas
Ever dreamed of spending the day snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters of the Bahamas? A beach trip to Rose Island, a small private island 3 miles east of Paradise Island, promises just that opportunity. We recommending checking Harbour Safaris to learn more about day trips to this pristine oasis.
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Clifton Heritage Park

Nassau, Bahamas
At Clifton Heritage you can explore the legacy of the Lucayans, the Loyalists and Africans, all of which played a vital role in shaping the culture and history of The Bahamas. We love the winding trails offered throughout this park, as well as the panoramic cliffs with epic views just waiting to be grammed.
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Stroll Down Bay Street

Nassau, Bahamas
Head to the heart of The Bahama’s with a visit to the oldest thoroughfare, Bay Street. Whether it’s high-end luxury or high-octane bargain hunting you’re after, shopping in all of its forms is the name of the game during a visit here. During your stroll, be sure to visit the world-famous Straw Market, where hundreds of local vendors sell kitschy Bahamian collectibles.
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