I have never really considered myself a resort-style traveler. I like nice places to stay. I like luxury too. But, in general, I am not a fan of having everything taken care of for me and I do not like controlled environments where everything feels perfectly planned and the personality of a destination is contained to the perimeter. But maybe I got it all wrong.
After staying at The Cove Resort in Eleuthera, I just might have found an ideal resort destination for me.
There is no getting around the price tag. It is not an affordable place to stay. This was a splurge for us, and even with a generous budget going in, we still went over on expenses. But I would not change a thing. And to be fair, this must have been an expensive and tedious process to build the Resort here. The pace of the island is slow and getting supplies on the island is surely a challenge.
While the mega-resorts of Nassau have zero appeal to me, The Cove is a different kind of luxury stay that almost deserves its own label: boutique resort or intimate luxury hotel. The property does a great job of maintaining character and respecting its site without intruding or misrepresenting the island. Our visit felt authentic and charming.
If I were to describe the style it would be simple luxury. There is not much need to improve upon perfection of two delightful cove beaches so there is no need for big pools or opulent decorations. The style is casual and relaxed with an upscale vibe.
And there are options for how active you want to be as well. You can sit by the pool if you like, but with two private beaches on the property in a cove setting, as well as complimentary kayaks, stand-up paddle board and snorkeling gear, there is very little excuse for boredom.
But if there is something that stood out to us, it was how friendly the staff were. This was not exclusive to The Cove actually, it was part of the culture of the island. Everyone greets you. People get to know your name and they remember you. But most importantly it feels very genuine. We also loved how dog-friendly the resort was. Not only are guests allowed to bring dogs, but employees work alongside their furry friends as well.
As with all resort settings, everything is easy and convenient. They can arrange your car rental, your airport transportation and they can feed and keep you active all without having to leave the resort. But what I like about their approach is that they do not seem to want you to just stay there. You are encouraged to get out and adventure. But at the same time, it feels like a welcome and secure “home” to return home to each night.
We stayed at the start of their cold season, specifically around Thanksgiving, so I can not attest to the usual occupancy but I really appreciated that it appeared to not be overcrowded. An important part of the magic of The Cove is how quiet and secluded it felt. There were plenty of lounge chairs and there is a ton of space so that you can find your own corner to be away from it all.
All that said, there were still some imperfections from our stay. The front desk staff made a few mistakes, one with room booking and one with our massage appointment. We also reserved the hotel shuttle to pick us up but they sent a cab instead. All of these were addressed in very agreeable ways (discounted room and transportation), but there is a certain easy-going attitude that you need to expect. I do not think that they met US hospitality standards in that regard, but they exceeded it with their smile and friendly attitude. I found that I walked away pleased from each minor bump. And, really, they were all minor.
The resort is also not complete with their growth. So, there was noise from the building of a from desk area to a new boat dock. This never really bothered us, especially since we had a discounted rate but it might be something to ask about or be aware of before going into the reservation if you are particular. I look forward to returning and seeing the renovations and I expect that the discounts will be less generous when that time comes.
Not only do I believe that Eleuthera to be a hidden gem, but I am sure that The Cove is on it’s way to be an internationally renowned luxury destination. Even if we cannot return for a stay, I know we will be back to dine at their on-site restaurant that comes with amazing views and delicious cuisine.
If you are considering a stay in Eleuthera at The Cove, then be sure to check out their website but I get blue with water envy watching their Instagram account too.
I brought my GoPro along on this visit and made a dedicated video to our experience. I am not sure that I could capture the amazing energy of relaxed happiness but I hope you enjoy regardless.