Club Med Hotel Bermuda
Holiday Inn

In 1973, Holiday Inn Hotel opened in St George's on a hill top at a picturesque location close to the St. Catherine's Fort and overlooking the St. Catherine's Beach. But after eight years of operation, in 1981 it was sold out to the Loews Hotels group of New York. 
In 1985, it was sold again to the Club Med group and it re-opened as a 630-room grand hotel called St George's Cove. But further ill fate was awaiting the hotel. 
Two years later, the hotel was badly damaged by Hurricane Emily. The next year, the Club Med group finally decided to close down the hotel. Since then it remained in derelict condition for 20 years until 2008. Many attempts to resurrect the hotel failed despite mediation from the Bermuda Government. 
In 2007, Bazarian International was named as the developer for the property. They tied up with Hyatt Group to build a new Hotel - The Park Hyatt by early 2012. 
Derelict Club Med Hotel from St Catherine's Fort 
Club Med Hotel Bermuda 
In August 2008, the hotel was demolished through implosion using dynamite. Over 70 pounds of dynamite were used. Take a look at the video of this Implosion. The button was pressed by the then Premier of Bermuda Ewart Brown. 
Implosion - CluB Med Hotel Bermuda 
This is the first building implosion in Bermuda's history. At 10am on August 25, 2008, the explosives were set off and this huge landmark hotel weighing some 28,000 pounds of concrete began to tumble, and came down in just seven seconds to huge cheers from hundreds of spectators. The implosion left huge amount of debris on the grounds. 
However since the implosion took place, there had been many controversies around the Club Med site including cancellation of contracts, change in plans and awarding of contract to new builders and groups. The following section is a brief chronological account of such activities including the current status of the hotel development. 
Update: October 24, 2010 
Park Hyatt has declared that they are now official equity stakeholder in this $300M project. They had so far offered only to coordinate and facilitate the project. With the group formally joining hands, the project now seems to be a reality. However, no construction work has yet started. It is estimated that it would take 24 to 30 months to complete the project once the work starts. The work is expected to begin soon. 
Update: January 2013 
The contract with Bazarian/Park Hyatt was terminated in October 2012. Prior to the general election in the island held in December 2012, a letter was issued by the Tourism Department of the previous government (PLP) terminating the contract of Bazarian/Park Hyatt group. Although the real reason is unknown, it seems the Tourism Department had given one month notice to the group in September 2012 asking them to restore the beach. Since the group failed to do so, another letter was issues in October 2012 terminating the resort development contract. Now that the new government OBA has taken over, it lies in total confusion and the fate of the new resort is unknown. 
Update August 2014 
Desarrollos Hotelco Group has been selected to redevelop the earlier Club Med/Holiday Inn property. The proposed plan includes a 238-room luxury hotel and renovation of St George's Golf Course. The hotel will have golf villas, estate residences, swimming pools, casino, spa and fitness center etc amongst other things. Currently the entire property is under 120 days of due diligence which is scheduled to end by October 8, 2014. 
Update December 2014 
Minister of Tourism and Transport mentioned that the budget for redevelopment of the hotel is $120 million and in the first phase 122 rooms with eight residences will be developed. The development work is planned to begin in mid-2015. 
Update May 2017 
Finally after decades of abandonment and changes in plans, The Marriott International has been awarded the contract who will engage the developer Hotelco Bermuda Holding Ltd to build a luxury hotel St. Regis at the Club Med site. The ground breaking has recently taken place. The development will take place in phases which will include 122 rooms, private and timeshare condos, restaurant, bar, wine vault, casino, large meeting places and of course the 18-hole St. George's golf course. 
Raj BhattacharyaBy Raj Bhattacharya 
Raj, a seasoned travel writer and Bermuda destination expert, has extensive global travel experience. This website reflects his profound insights, garnered over nearly two decades of dedicated findings and research on the island. Raj has assisted countless Bermuda-bound visitors by providing direct, personalized responses to their queries and imparting his wealth of knowledge through this platform. This site serves as an indispensable guide for those seeking informed and reliable insights into Bermuda's treasures. 
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Visitors' Reviews and Comments

Derek Knowles (August 2021) 
In April 1974 I arrived in Bermuda to begin working at the Old Bermudiana Hotel and in September of that year with the hotel closing for renovations, I was able to have my work permit changed and joined the staff at the Holiday Inn as a night auditor under Brian Woods subsequently becoming head night auditor.  I was also involved in implementing enhancements to the systems when the new food and beverage registers were installed. 
I subsequently became Front Office Manager. I remember on one occasion when the staff decided to strike, it was a case of all management and senior staff pulling out all the stops to ensure that the guests were not inconvenienced. 
I subsequently became responsible for billing the wholesale tour operators who (through retail travel agents in the US and Canada) issued vouchers to guests covering their stay at the hotel. During this time, Kemmons Wilson (who was the founder of Holiday Inns) was guest of honour at a cocktail party hosted by the US Government as The Kemmons Wilson Construction Company from Memphis had been responsible for the construction of new houses at the US Naval Air Station (Kindley Air Field) St. George's. 
As a member of the management team on duty, he called me over and asked if I would get him a hamburger and fries from the coffee shop since he preferred simple fare as opposed to what was on the buffet - of course I could not refuse since he was the founder of the Holiday Inn chain. Due to the Bermudianisation of the position (in which a Bermudian replaced me), I was again able to change my work permit yet again in 1978 and moved to the Elbow Beach Hotel. I spent almost seven years working in Bermuda and loved every moment of my stay there. 
Thank you for allowing me to take time to chat. 
Theresa Renaud (April 2021) 
Hello, I worked at the Club Med when it opened in 1985/6 for six months. I really enjoyed the facilities and found the location fantastic... a secluded beach strictly reserved for the club customers... I found the locals very welcoming. It was a beautiful experience - a pity reading what happened afterwards (the Mariott chain had wanted to hire me... I declined their offer - I was just doing this as a break after universities studies.) 
Sylvain Guet (April 2019) 
I have fond memories of the Loews Bermuda Beach Resort. I resided in the hotel from 1982-1985 as my father functioned as its general manager. The lobby smelled of cedar wood with bold colors and patterns. Summers were spent enjoying pool parties, BBQ on the beach, square dancing atop of Fort-Albert amongst other fun activities. Special times and memories. Sad to see the video of its demolition. 
Brian J Lewis (February 2019) 
Employed as a hotel engineer when first started to operate, a beautiful place, my first daughter born in Bermuda, sad to hear now demolished. Will return hopefully. 
Dennis Lewis (October 2018) 
The article says the Holiday Inn opened in 1973. That is not correct. We spent our honeymoon at the Holiday Inn in St George Bermuda in 1971 and we just returned from a cruise to Bermuda today (47 years later). We saved many memorabilia from 1971. What a great time then and now through out Bermuda. 
Patricia Garroch Stephens (December 2017) 
Was so sad to find out a few years ago, that the hotel was demolished. What a shame I worked here finally as head pastry chef. Great place to work, the staff were amazing. The situation was stunning too. Will be in my memory for ever. 
Brian Lapierre (December 2017) 
During my time in Canadian Submarines in the early 70's we used to be billet in the Holiday Inn while on a port visit to St. Georges, Bermuda. Great memories from those visits. Renting a moped and driving the island from end to end. It was sad to see it run down and closed then imploded. I hope the new hotel being built is as nice as the HI in its heyday. 
Brian Woods (ex reception and night auditor) October 2017 
like Julie Picket, I too worked at castle harbour and then at holiday inn.. it seems such a shame that they are no longer around. have loads of happy memories about the island and the beautiful people I got to know. Looking at recent photos now its seems that the island has become very crowded to what I remember and what my photos show..(progress I guess). Anyway to anyone who remembers from those days back then... Hi and maybe send an email 
to Bermuda and its people...thanks for the memories. 
Maurice Castle (April 2017) 
As a member of the ships flight on HMS Glamorgan in 1971, I was 17 years old and the helicopter ground crew and pilots stayed at the holiday inn for 1 week. We hired out mopeds and really enjoyed our stay there. We had a party around the swimming pool. Great memories. I even met miss Bermuda who was a telephonist. Prime minister Edward Heath and Richard Nixon had a meeting on board our ship at Bermuda. 
Geoff (April 2017) 
Stayed there many times since it opened in 71, always had a great time but the place really went down hill the last two owners. I went back in 92 as a salvage contractor and there was not much left as the place was looted for 15 years of abandonment. The locals even stole the glass door and the copper from the elevators. Many, many tons of garbage was needed to be removed from the utility closets before we could assess the worth of the scrap. No less then 24 squatters had made it there home. 
Sadly I spent 3 weeks there and we never submitted a bid, it was just to dangerous to remove anything. The grounds where still manicured but the buildings where in sad shape. Sorry it died a slow death and now it's just a another failed hotel on Bermuda's long list of failures. Prospective site developers need a better partnership with the government to see this kind of thing doesn't happen to the few remaining larger hotels on the island. 
Julie Pickett (March 2017) 
I was employed at Holiday Inn - Bermuda from just prior to its opening until the end of 1973. I have only just found out that it was demolished. Such a shame as it wasn't really very old in the scheme of things. I have very fond memories of Bermuda, having worked at the Castle Harbour Hotel (also sadly now demolished) before moving over to Holiday Inn. Good friends of mine who I met on the island have just returned from a nostalgia trip and have given me an update on what's happening there. Hope to return myself one day. 
Leslie (March 2017) 
Stayed at this hotel (Loews) with friends from college. It was spring break 1984... the best spring break ever! The hotel was gorgeous but most impressive was the view from our rooms!  Beautiful turquoise water splashing on the rocky shore and inlets. Rum swizzlers, mopeds, the tree lined road leading back up to the hotel, fun dance bars in the nearby town, afternoon tea where we would eat our meal for the day (it was expensive for college students and we had to save our money for the drinks!), colorful homes that dotted the island, and the beautiful people of Bermuda!  Definitely going to go back to Bermuda one day! And definitely have to check out St. Catherine's area for old time sake! 
Pete Coyle (June 2016) 
Stayed at the hotel for about 10 days in June of 1985. The pink stucco walls and the many shades of aquamarine waters around the fort are still etched in my mind. Took some great photos at the secluded cove beaches and the old church that lay in ruins just down the road from the hotel. The smaller pool on the south side of the hotel was almost always empty and very private and relaxing. Rented a little red motor scooter and rode it all over the island in the warm tropical air and beautiful sunshine gleaming on the waters. Driving on the "opposite" site of the road was challenging especially at intersections trying to figure who goes next, but found the Bermuda bus drivers extremely tolerant of my navigation indecision. The people of Bermuda were very gracious and friendly, the bars and the night clubs in town all very welcoming. Saw the magnificent caves and the mirror image of the stalagmites reflected in the crystal clear water deep underground. Incredibly beautiful. Sad indeed to hear the hotel was torn down. The ride down the long steep hill from the hotel to the base of the fort was hair-raising on the little scooter, I look forward to returning to St.George's Cove even if things have changed there. 
Kathy Campbell (March 2016) 
My husband and I stayed at the Holiday Inn in 1980 for our honeymoon.  We had such a wonderful time - snorkeling in the cove, Rum Swizzles by the pool, dinner overlooking the Fort and the ocean liners out at sea. We loved St. Georges and I remember going to a disco in a cave at a nearby hotel?  Can't remember the name.  Just loved it - sad to see it go. The perfect spot for a new resort.  
Rene (July 2015) 
This hotel was beautiful. Remote for sure. I was 19 years old and got married in 1973. Our honeymoon cost $900.00 including airfare, food and 1 full week at the hotel ocean front room. It was beautiful and I still to this day look at those pics of the hotel high on the hill. There was hardly anyone around even in the hotel. Wish i could go back there. Sad to hear it was demolished and just never caught on. Beautiful spot. 
Kim (May 2015) 
Our family vacationed to this Club Med in May of 1988. It was likely the top vacation we ever experienced. Like being on a cruise ship, but on land. It rained the entire trip. Not one ray of sunshine. I admit my most favorable memory was being able to purchase Peach Schnapps at the local liquor store at 17 years of age. Now, that was awesome! This land is perfect for another resort. Maybe not build it so big. That hotel was HUGE!! Can't imagine the costs of running it. 
Biff Thomas (October 2014) 
I stayed at the then Holiday Inn with my family in 1977. The place was remote, but it had everything from a disco and bars for my parents and older siblings to great pools and games for the younger lot.  It had one broad beach suitable for sunning and a narrower one by the fort that was great for snorkling. My parents bought a timeshare next door at the St George Club and I got to visit numerous times and wandered around the grounds in the 90s and 00s as the hotel lay in waste.  Terrible shame. 
Van Bricker (November 2013) 
My wife and I stayed at the Holiday Inn (1972-three months) while we waited for our furniture to arrive from the US. I was stationed at the Naval Air Station Public Works.It was quite the hotel, I hated to see it go away.. a lot of memories. 
Cheryl MacDonald 
Just in the interest of accuracy, the Holiday Inn opened in St. George's in 1971 not 1973. I was hired as part of the food and beverage night audit staff and my interview for that job was in December of 1970. The opening was delayed because of dock strikes in South Florida interfering with materials for construction and furnishing. I arrived in Bermuda in late March of 1971 and left in November of 1971. The first guests at the hotel arrived in June but the official opening was not until later in the year.  I met my husband there as he was a part of the construction staff (onsite financial comptroller) for Savage Construction.