Top Budget, Mid-Range & Luxury Hotels & Resorts in Exuma
Before you check into any hotel in Great Exuma…you should know that infrastructure is not awesome as a rule here. You can expect nonfunctional Wi Fi and regular dysfunction of the cellular networks. Urgent e-mails and urgent phone calls sometimes get delayed here. The signage on the street even on Great Exuma’s George Town is sometimes inadequate. There are next to no traffic lights.
Mostly there is a main road in all important areas and all the buildings and shops are on either sides of the road which makes things simple. There are few ATM Machines on the islands so bring a good stock of cash (USD is accepted almost everywhere so there is little need of conversion).
The locals are very friendly and will walk with you often till you reach your destination. The cuisine will mostly not confirm to your expectations if you are expecting world food…there is decidedly a strong local flavor in all dishes.
Everything runs on island time and no one is in a hurry which may be bothersome at first but gradually you will love the relaxed pace. Most hotels in Exuma are in the budget and mid-range category with a few expensive ones. However prices cannot be comparable to USA standards as everything is much more expensive here.
In order to check user ratings of various hotels in Exuma, pictures of their facilities and rooms, and then choose one to book online, you can use the following search box from Booking.com.
Budget Hotels in Exuma
These are places in Exuma that you should target when you are on a strict budget. However amenities here will not conform to American standards and neither will the price. These places won’t accept cards and have a strong local flavor about them. These are bed and breakfast type accommodation options that have earned a good and reliable repute in the islands.
Budget hotels in Exuma will charge around 200 USD per night and lesser
Coral Gardens Bed and Breakfast
Address: 12 Garden Road, Hooper’s Bay, Great Exuma
Coral gardens is one of the best known bed and breakfast places in great Exuma. It is perched on a hillside and is close to great beaches. There is a good range of watersports offered here like snorkeling, scuba diving, kayak rentals, kite surfing and kite boarding.
There are nice and bright rooms that are grouped into Bed and Breakfast Rooms, Studio suites and Family Apartments. Some of the rooms have a king bed, the others twin beds and queen beds. The Family Apartment are 2 self-catered apartments and studios are meant for couples and small families that comprise of 2 adults and up to 2 kids.
All apartments have a kitchen, lounge and dining area along with a private sundeck. There is no formal in-house restaurant but a rather nice breakfast room where fresh fruits, coffee, tea and juice are provided between 4pm to 6pm. They also offer continental breakfast for a separate charge.
You can rent the apartments on weekly basis or even monthly basis for subsidized rates. WI fi here is free. Peter and Betty, the couple who run the place are helpful and have vast local knowledge…they will happily help you to rent a vehicle to explore the island.
On the downside you might find that some of the apartment facilities are poorly maintained…so check before you actually check in. You should also bring insect repellant spray.
Address: Paradise Bay Beach
Queens Highway, Rokers Point, 29243 Farmers Hill
The resort is rather low key, doesn’t have a typical touristy appeal and that may be an advantage to some. It’s on the Paradise Bay beach that’s a 15 minute drive from the International airport. The bed and amenities are very basic though the air conditioning is great (important advantage in the Bahamas). What makes this place special is the staff who are friendly and very forthcoming with their treasure stores of local knowledge. Cedric the owner will help you in creating a customized vacation schedule and will help you in booking tours.
Accommodation is in rooms that have ocean/ garden views and TV/DVD Player, air conditioning and writing desks. The hotel arranges water sports, kayaks, cars and scooters for its guests.
They have a commercial arrangement with the nearby restaurant La Forchette which serves European food. Breakfast is complimentary.
The Hooper Bay/ turtle beach is quite near…you are sure to be greeted with the sights of sea turtles when you arrive. Nice restaurants like Tropic Breeze and Santanas are also near and so are the sandbanks at Haulover Bay.
The hotel seems to be rather stingy with toiletries and bath towels so pack your own stuff.
Mt Pleasant Hotel Suites
Address: Queens Highway , Hooper’s Bay, Georgetown
The Mt Pleasant Suites Hotel is just 4 km away from George Town and a 10 minutes’ drive from the airport…the location is Hooper’s bay which is a popular tourist spot. This all white apartment style hotel has fully furnished suites with kitchens and some even have a full-fledged sitting and dining zone.
All apartments have garden views and there are free cleaning services …there are basically three choices King Studio, apartment with balcony and apartment with ground floor. There is free WI fi, daily maid service, air conditioning and the place is friendly towards the differently abled. There isn’t an in house restaurant…you need to travel for at least half an hour till you get a good one. However apartments have kitchens and the grocery store is just a few minutes away. The beach is very near.
Address: Regatta Point, George Town, Kidd Cove, Great Exuma
Phone: 1.888.875.8066 (toll free number)
The Regatta Point has a nice convenient location…its very near George Town and yet it’s in an area that’s peaceful. The Elvis Water Taxi Service, beach, Chat n Chill restaurant, Driftwood Cafe and the grocery store are all minutes away.
There are apartment style accommodation options here which include Harbor View (these are pricier …they directly look over Elizabeth Harbor) and Core View Units. The Harbor View units have King Beds, bathroom and a full kitchen along with 2 covered decks. The core units are on the first floor and have similar amenities along with 2 queen beds.
There is no air conditioning but there are high speed fans. There is no Wi Fi or in house restaurant either. A lady named Nancy manages the apartments and she is very warm and hospitable. Breakfasts can be arranged by the staff but you would have to prepare the rest of your own meals in the kitchen or else dine out (there are plenty of good restaurants nearby).
Room rate includes the housekeeping charges too but not the gratuity. 7.5% Government Tax is levied on the total bill amount. The good news is this place will give you a refund if you cancel before two weeks of your expected visit…unlike most other hotels in Exuma who don’t offer a refund.
Mid-Range Hotels in Exuma
This category of hotels in Exuma spans across boutique hotels that provide different island experiences in an unique way but have limited accommodation options and these hotels are located at the different cays of Exuma. The mid-range hotels will have a decent price range but won’t be as affordable as hotels in USA with similar amenities. Most of these hotels are in exotic locations so bringing your own food and drink supplies plus plenty of cash is highly recommended.
Usually mid-range hotels in Exuma will charge around 200 USD or more per night.
St Francis Resort
Address: Stocking Island, Exuma
Phone: +1 242-557-9629
The resort is on Stocking Island that’s a boat ride away from the Great Exuma. All rooms here overlook the Atlantic Ocean and there are splendid views…the 5 mile ocean side beach as well as harbour side beach is just a few steps away. Stocking Island has more than 10 beaches (sand dollar beach, hamburger beach and crystal beach are quite near) and you can indulge in sailing, shelling, jogging or simply lazing around. The resort offers guided tours and water sports packages apart from a self-owned 14’ hobie cat for avid sailors.
If you love hiking and sailing then this resort is a great destination…you can choose to climb to the top of Monument Hill that’s a vantage point and there are many hiking trails around here. Staying anywhere on Stocking Island comes with the obvious advantage of easy access to the famous Sunday Pig Roast at the Chat n Chill near Hurricane Holes.
Rooms are simple and adequately furnished with a mini refrigerator, beach towels, air dryer, free internet and air conditioning. The dinghy dock is a great advantage for boaters though power hook-ups are not available. This also means that casual boaters will crowd the bar and restaurant and that may be a disadvantage.
Exuma Beach Resort
Address: 1.5 miles northwest of Georgetown, Great Exuma
The Exuma beach resort is a pretty looking place overlooking the beach and is about a 12 minute walk from downtown. There is a range of accommodation options right from beach front rooms to spacious suites and even cottages…all of them have island inspired names. Rooms are pleasantly furnished with standard amenities and have ocean inspired lime green and blue color themes.
You can also rent a room for some hours from their pleasantly furnished guest rooms in case you just need to pass a few hours here. The Latitudes Bar and Grill here serves Bahamian and some continental dishes apart from BBQ entrees (only lunch and dinner from Tuesday to Sunday). The Harbor side bar has some impromptu music performances, games nights and enjoyable surprises at intervals. On the downside…during off season time things get rather sketchy here…sometimes the amenities are not maintained well. You really need to check out the room before taking up one and getting in.
Address: Queens Highway, Mile Marker,
1.2 West, Next to Hideaways Resort, George Town
This hotel is very near the airport (just 20 minutes away) and yet is on a quiet spot where almost each room faces the ocean…this is its major selling point. The rooms are nice and tidy but not anything exceptional and there is a tiny in-house pool. The management will arrange boat trips, bone fish guides and water taxis for you. From the attached pier you will be able to see a lot of marine life…barracuda, rays, bonefish and needlefish.
The pier also hosts a BBQ night with live music and free chicken wings every Wednesday. Accommodation is in the 16 king size or dual queen size bedroom suites (most of them are over 400 feet) and these have premium linen bed spreads, Wi Fi, air conditioning, coffee maker and stone bathrooms with glass enclosed rain showers and double vanities.
Laundry and in room service is available for a charge. The restaurant food is moderately good if you order the traditional Bahamian items but it’s expensive. A basic continental breakfast is provided free to guests. The bar is called Frankie Bananas and has a nice water location though it isn’t open every day.
Address: B&G Highway, Black Point, Staniel Cay
Phone: +1 305-722-3399, 242-524-0951
You will find 7 villas with a unique style in Embrace Resort …interestingly the name Embrace is a short form for all the 7 villas here that are named after Bahamian Islands. Choose between Honeymoon villas (this has a Jacuzzi) to 3 bedroom and 2 bedroom villas.
The villas offers private bathrooms with spa settings, a bunch of free toiletries, hair dryers and patios with some rooms. The highlights are a good babysitting service, proximity of 3 restaurants and 3 grocery stores on the island. The hotel will arrange to and fro airport trips, diving and snorkeling trips and golf cart rentals apart from car rentals.
The resort is committed to island sustainability…its owned and managed by Nikki Ferguson who is the relative of captain Rolly Gray (a local sailing legend). The villas are all painted with low VOC Paint, there are low water bathrooms and pressure treated pines used for construction (the crew and staff are all Bahamian). You will get a good opportunity to know about the distinct flavors of different Bahamian islands here as sensitizing guests is one of the management goals.
On the downside you might find the food to be a little expensive…also there are no fast food chains and shopping hubs nearby.
Compass Cay Marina and Resort
Address: Compass Cay, Exuma
Phone: 00 1 242 422 7300
If you are utterly fascinated with the shark experience and the views on Compass Cay then you could consider staying at the resort here. The place has a remote and exotic feel and you will experience serenity and solitude…there are 4 villas here and they have plenty of distance between them. All of them are on hilltops and they offer pretty views of the marina, Exuma sound and the pipe creek.
The furnishings and amenities can be described as island chic…there is burnished wood furniture, spacious windows and linen all around. The Mango house is especially nice with its French doors that open up to looming views of pipe creek. There are fully furnished kitchens and shell patterns all over the place. If you fish, you can bring in your own catch and grill it at the marina grill. The marina has a liquor shop but no restaurants though sometimes homemade burgers are sold.
The downside here is that the resort is difficult to get to and there are no grocery stores around. You have to bring your own stock of supplies when you come, otherwise get them from Sampson Cay and Staniel Cay. A complimentary guest boat is available here but you need to deposit money and buy fuel for it. Stay here if the location is a priority as the services and facilities can have issues.
Norman’s Cay Beach Club
Address: Mac Duffs, Norman’s Cay
3 villas and 3 duplex cottages are a part of this property in Norman’s Cay. The cottages are ocean front with 547 sq. feet of space and have private living room, covered porch and very comfortable amenities. The ocean view villas are 708 sq. feet and have wonderful gardens, white sandy beach and white surf views…about 6 people can comfortably stay here. There is the feel of being in a parallel serene universe… and the views all around are fantastic. The décor of the accommodation options as well as the in house restaurant can be called “funky”.
Norman’s Cay is in the middle of the Exuma chain and you can reach it from Highborne by a ten minute boat ride…in case you are interested in exploring the Land and Sea Park this is a good place to stay. You can take a boat from here right up to Warderick Wells. If you arrive in off season then you might end up having the whole property to yourself. The restaurant here is manned by cheerful staff and some of the house specials like snapper with pineapple sauce and salmon with fresh veggies are good. You can dive, spear fish and snorkel here …the staff will arrange it for you at short notice.
On the downside the prices will seem inordinately high in comparison to the amenities offered.
Club Peace and Plenty
Address: Queen’s Highway, George Town
Easily one of the most popular accommodation options in Exuma, the Club Peace and Plenty has artistic Caribbean furniture, huge balconies and stately four poster beds. The Club is known its own ferry service and water sports, yoga and diving guides. There are special associated bone-fishing guides who teach guests how to use boats and fly…there is even a separate hotel wing called Peace and Plenty Bonefish Lodge (this offers comprehensive fishing and accommodation packages).
The main hotel has 2 bedroom 2 bathroom suites, family suites (1 king bed and 2 twin beds), 2 queen bedded rooms, club suites, and waterfront rooms with a small kitchen….most rooms and suites have all white décor which is rather soothing.
The hotel has multiple outdoor pools, libraries and gardens and there are efficient in house masseuses. There is a well-known in house restaurant called + 39 and bar but the cuisine served is predominantly Bahamian (ask for cracked chicken, grouper fingers, Cole slaw and fries). If you want to explore Stocking island and nearby areas then this is a good choice for accommodation as direct ferries are run to stocking island from the attached dock. Ask for rooms that have views of the Elizabeth Harbor. 15% service Gratuity and VAT are added automatically to the bill though service runs predominantly on “island time” (for example it’s tough to get coffee before 8.30 a.m. in the morning).
Address: Jolly Hall Bay at Queens Highway, Georgetown
Phone: +1 242-3362787
As indicated by its name Hideaways offers a rather secluded peaceful retreat where guests can spend a restful time. There are one/two and three bedroom villas here with ocean views. There is a BBQ Facilities, family rooms, a sun terrace and other standard amenities. There are also free facilities like a business center, newspaper service, maid facility and table tennis court. There are cottages (with kitchenettes) and villas (only these have full kitchens) here with waterfront/ poolside and garden view locations.
Hideaways is on the beach and there is easy access to the water that’s accentuated by the fact that they offer free use of kayaks, paddle boards and paddle boats (on a first come first served basis) to their guests. There is a nice pool and a poolside bar and grill (called Splash). There is a games room here and guests can lounge there and play some board games
Staniel Cay Yacht Club Resort
Staniel Cay, Exuma
Staniel Cay is undoubtedly one of the more popular tourist hubs in Exuma and the Staniel Cay Yacht Club is a hot preference here. There are multiple toy book inspired pretty pastel shaded cottages here with white accents and sloping roofs. The bungalows and suites all have pretty tropical names like sugar apple, coco plum, peri winkle, sea grape etc. and can be grouped into Waterford bungalows, Waterfront suites, Water view suites and a single villa named Coral.
Interiors are kept fashionably bare and the floors are wooden while there are rainfall showers in the ultra-modern bathrooms. Staniel Cay has its own marina, outdoor pools and landscaped gardens. Extensive boat journeys, fishing adventures and wildlife exploration programs are arranged here by the Club. All guests here get free access to a standard paddle board. In case exploring the Exuma Land and Sea Park is on your priority list then staying here is a good idea…their tour packages are well aligned to the attractions of the park.
The Yacht Club restaurant here is the best place to dine in Staniel Cays and its nearby areas. You can even dress up and go for a nice dinner there and have steaks, sea food, lamb and duck apart from regular fare. Breakfast menu and the dessert menu are both good.
Luxury Hotels in Exuma
When it comes to the luxury hotel segment…Exuma doesn’t have too many options. Exuma is not as glamorous as Nassau or even Grand Bahama but it does have a couple of options for those who would like to spend a stylish vacation. Some very flamboyant resorts exist like David Copperfield’s resort in Musha Cay where the crème de la crème of the glamour world parties. Apart from that you can consider going to the following places if you really want a luxury holiday in Exuma.
Luxury hotels in Exuma will charge about 800 USD per night and above. They will all accept cards….most of them have membership schemes where you can get discounts via loyalty points.
Sandals Emerald Bay Golf, Tennis and Spa Resort
All Inclusive (Only for Couples)
Address: Queen's Highway, Emerald Bay, Rokers Point, Georgetown
Phone: +1 242-677-7300
Easily one of Exuma’s most premier accommodation offerings Sandals will conjure up a feeling of staying in Nassau as the service and accommodation standards are exceptionally great. The resort sprawls across 500 acres and is on private beach and contains stylish villas and suites in an enclave. The rooms are grouped into “love nests”, butler level rooms and club level rooms with options of beach/ ocean and garden views. There is access to 11 restaurants, 6 bars …the French restaurant, Soy, Bahama Bay and Kimonos are the most notable ones. All rooms have flat screen televisions, private bathrooms air condition, wardrobe units.
Sandals is an all-inclusive resort and you will get scuba diving courses, water sports opportunities, golf at Sandals Emerald Bay golf course, in house entertainment (live shows, theme nights, musical extravaganzas), land sports, gym and private cabanas (fist come first served basis) in your package. Appleton Estate Jamaican Rums and Robert Mondavi wines come free with meals. The Golf course is really nice and the marina here called the Emerald Sandals Bay Marina is a fully serviceable boater’s utopia that has floating docks, Wi-Fi, phone, cable TV, Water and electricity. Large yachts up to 240 feet can be accommodated here.
On the downside, internet isn’t free and when you are paying this much for accommodation this will leave you disappointed. The Sandals won’t work for you if you are looking for a nice quiet vacation…the payoff isn’t great unless you heartily participate in all the included activities. Sometimes they try to push their tours too much and it becomes a bother since many guests prefer having more personalized experiences. Again, if a tour from a local agency is booked Sandals doesn’t allow the representative to pick up or drop inside the premises and that’s also rather annoying
Grand Isle Resort and Spa
Address: Rokers Point, Great Exuma
Phone: +1 242-358-5000
Toll free: 844-613-2002
The beautiful Grand Isle Resort and Spa is one of the top names in the Great Exuma Island. The resort is the recipient of the AAA Diamond award and it has a sun kissed look that’s decidedly Bahamian. The resort offers facilities for fly fishing, snorkeling, sport fishing etc.
There are one to four bedroom villas in the Grand Isle resort and all of them contain customized amenities, private balconies with sweeping views, patios where you can get sea breezes and a nice golf course. There is also a gourmet kitchen attached to every villa along with free WI fi. The décor is predominantly pastel with splashes of ocean color and typical relaxed Bahamian style furniture.
The Palapa Grill (the only in house restaurant) offers Bahamian dinner theme nights, BBQ and Bonfire experiences and a good selection of tropical cocktails and food cooked from organic local produce.
There is the Ocean view terrace where you can choose to have starlit/ candle lit meals (you need to make advance reservations by calling 242.358.5000,) the spa is ultra-luxurious (probably the best on these islands) offering sea water based therapeutic soaks and massages like Frangipani salt glow, coconut rubs, lime and ginger salt rubs etc. There is also scope for couple’s massages and hot lava shell massages besides special packages for kids beauty treatments and hair braiding. The mile long Emerald Bay beach has private resort access and it’s an ideal sunbathing and snorkelling spot.
On the downside the restaurant food is a bit overpriced and you might not always like the taste. The staff service is not consistent and that’s a turn off especially considering the fact that this is one of the best resorts around.
Fowl Cay All Inclusive Resort
On Fowl Cay
Phone: 877-845-5275/ 305-284-1300
This beautiful boutique Luxury resort is on a tiny cay nestling in the Exuma Chain….incidentally its only 200 miles away from Miami which means that many people fly directly here via the Staniel Cay Airstrip. Fowl cay is known for its repeat customers, loyalists who swear by its understated luxury and wide variety of amenities in a serene uncrowded atmosphere. This is the only resort on Fowls Cay.
With the Fowl Cay resort and with other small island specific resorts it’s important to ensure that there is a good fit between your expectations and their offering. If you expect to explore the wonderful terrain around, indulge in water sports and fish and have delicious local style dinner every night then this is a good fit. If you expect luxury amenities and pampering with prompt service on the beach then this isn’t the correct accommodation option.
There are many sea turtles in the waters around the Fowl cay and you can opt for a nice turtle feeding experience conducted by a local guy named Dino. The in house resort dog Ruby will endear herself to you…she is generous with her licks and kisses. The in-house restaurant is called Hill House and in house chef here is Charles…he is well known all over the island for his innovative dishes. The restaurant is adjacent to a freshwater pool which has dual leak chaise lounges and sun umbrellas.
The pub here has facilities for Bimini Ring game, backgammon and darts. There are three private beaches of the Fowl Cay Resort and tennis, horse shoe and Bocce courts.
Accommodation is basically in villas…there are 1 bedroom to 3 bedroom options. Interiors and accents are whites and nudes with dark wood furniture and cozy furnishings. The villas have pretty names like Lindon, Birdcage, Seabreeze, Sweetwater, Blue moon etc. Fowl cay resort arranges free airport transfer from Staniel Cay Airstrip to Fowl Cay (its just 1.26 miles away).
There are lots of repeat guests at Fowls Cay resort which basically means that they improvise more in order to ensure loyalty. The only downside seems to be underutilization of the beautiful beach set up that they have.
The all-inclusive package here means that all activities and food are included in the price you pay. The fridge is fully stocked and all major meals, premier alcoholic drinks and soft drinks are included in the package along with access to a motor boat (at least 17 feet with lots of gas), water sports games equipment, snorkel gear and other amenities. Use of fishing gear comes with an additional charge.
Address: Bahamas Sound #12
Phone: +1 242-357-0329
Aptly named as the hotel faces a vast expanse of blue waters, the Turquoise Cay is a pretty beachfront hotel. The décor is majorly pastels and off whites with large sprawling balconies, beautiful nautical themed furnishings and accents and extra-large washrooms.
You will find that going on long soul searching walks from the Turquoise Cay is incredibly easy. There are so many trails nearby that lead to caves and hidden coves. The hotel is right there on the beach and has attached swimming pools. The in house restaurant serves exotic dishes concocted by ingredients sourced from France, Asia and Peru. The bar is in the second Floors and it’s great for watching sunsets. The rooms have huge TV’s and hampers from Crabtree and Evelyn.
On the downside the hotel is rather secluded and you will need to rent a car to leave the property and visit local attractions or explore around.
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