I was lucky enough to attend the 2019 ALLDocs conference at the Fairmont Southampton resort in Bermuda. My mom is a member of this optometrist organization and I tagged along with her for this experience, and I would take any excuse to go to Bermuda.
The doctors had a separate morning schedule since they had to attend continuing education presentations and the spouses had special activities planned throughout the day during this time. Since I was also interested in optometry as a profession, I bounced back and forth between the schedules so I got the best of both experiences.
If anyone was following the news at this time you would know Hurricane Jerry was headed to Bermuda and so was tropical storm Karen. Well from past experiences, I can say hurricane warnings don’t stop my family from traveling. This did effect some of the weather during the trip as we experienced rain and strong winds some days. However, we still got to experience the usual warm and sunny weather of Bermuda. ALLDocs arranged for the conference to be at the Fairmont Southampton. The Fairmont has 10 restaurants, a private beach club, pool deck, and a gym so most of our time was enjoyed at the resort, although we did venture out on several excursions. Breakfast at the hotel was at their restaurant called Windows on the Sound and it had the basic breakfast buffet features but with a stunning view of the bay outside. Breakfast with a view every morning-not bad.
The hotel has a private beach directly across the street from the hotel that is lined with blue and white striped umbrellas atop pink sand and the clearest blue water I have ever seen. If Paradise was a real place, here it is. There is a free shuttle the hotel offers that will take you back and forth to the beach right outside of the hotel. Chairs, umbrellas and towels are available at the beach. You can also rent a cabana for a charge.
The Coral Beach Club covers 26 acres and access is usually limited to members or friends of members, but we were lucky enough to snag an invitation. We were pleasantly greeted with mimosas upon arrival and then immediately mesmerized by the spectacular ocean views from their terrance situated on the sea cliffs. It’s just a short walk to the private pink-sand beach. My dad and I made our way down to the beach to dip our toes in the sands and admire the crashing blue waves. We ended our visit with a spectacular lunch overlooking the beautiful south shore.
This is something you cannot miss if you ever go to Bermuda. These stunning underground caves are millions of years old and the stalactites and stalagmites are something you have to see with your own eyes to marvel at. You go 55 feet deep into the caves and are surrounded by the limestone and rock formations. The coolest part of the tour is you are able to walk over the waters down a path. Both feature soaring stalagmites and icicles of white limestone dripping from the ceiling; cross the floating bridge to peer into a crystal-clear lake, which reveals more intricate rock formations underwater.
This was by far my favorite dining experience during my stay in Bermuda. This steakhouse is nestled dockside on Jew's Bay and offers breathtaking sunset views from the outdoor dock area. Our group started here for drinks and hors d'oeuvres and were able to admire the pier before being seated for dinner.
For dinner, we entered the historic inn exuding old world charm and elegance. The atmosphere, service, and food created the amazing fine dining experience. The waiters were attentive and knowledgeable of the menu. They also never let my wine glass empty. I started with the delicious truffle tagliolini (pasta) followed by a Caesar salad. The real standout was the filet mignon served with shared sides of mashed potatoes, green beans, and creamed spinach. They definitely saved the best for last because the dessert I ordered was heavenly. I got the snickers bar which sent my taste buds on a sugar high after the first bite. This decadent desert was described as a crunchy peanut nougat dark chocolate mouse covered with salted caramel. I indulged in every bite. The Waterlot Inn is definitely pricey and we were spoiled being with the ALLDocs group but was without a doubt one of the most delicious dinners I’ve had the privilege of experiencing. The snickers bar alone is worth a trip here.
Hamilton is the capital city of Bermuda known for its harbor side of colored colonial buildings and high-end shops. On the evening we decided to go to dinner in Hamilton, the weather was not on our side. As soon as we left it started to rain and the winds were blowing harder than usual. We still managed to walk around the quaint town and wandered down the pastel buildings. There are a lot of shops on this part of town and although a bit pricy there is no sales tax.
A group of us went out to eat at a seafood restaurant called Barracuda. It was a higher end restaurant like most are in Bermuda but had a nice atmosphere and saved us from the stormy weather outside. Although I wasn’t super impressed by the fish I ordered, I do have to give them credit for their presentation (see my food photo shoot). I highly recommend trying the carrots when you are in Bermuda. They are locally grown due to a permanent importation ban and are worth a taste if you see them on the menu!
It's easy to see why Horseshoe Bay is named one the best beaches in the world. The curving shape of the beach flaunts Bermuda's trademark turquoise waters and blush pink sand. This public beach was just a 3 minute walk from where our hotel shuttle drops us off at. You can stay out and unwind for hours here. There isn’t any sight of debris or trash and you have to take a dip in the beautiful clear water.