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Valentines Resort and Marina 4.0

Harbour Island, Out Islands, Bahamas

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • In “downtown” Harbour Island, a five-minute walk to Government Dock
  • Located on Bay Street, a five-minute walk to shops and restaurants
  • Modern, island-homey rooms with outdoor terraces and patios
  • Room sizes range from Junior Villas to Two-Bedroom Villas, most with full kitchens
  • Private pool with ample lounge chairs and umbrellas
  • The Boat House restaurant serving fresh seafood, salads, and grill fare
  • Open-air Rooster Tail Bar and Grill with spectacular sunset views
  • Cocoa Coffee House serving Starbucks and Lavazza coffee
  • Dermalogica Spa offering waxes, pedicures, massages
  • 51-slip marina with laundry services and Wi-Fi
  • Dive shop with wet suits and snorkel gear plus a gift shop
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel

Cons

  • Beach is a 10-minute walk from the hotel
  • Rooms are set away from the harbor and many lack harbor views

Bottom Line

Valentine’s Resort and Marina is an upscale hotel with 41 rooms on Harbour Island overlooking the bay. Spread out across Bay Street, the four-pearl resort has a quaint, relaxed vibe -- expect to see white picket fences, British colonial architecture, a private pool, and lounge-worthy wooden dock with ample common areas. Rooms are spacious and modern, with classy island-home decor; all have outdoor terraces and many have full kitchens. The two restaurants serve contemporary breakfasts, lunches, and dinners of fresh seafood, grill fare, and salads with a Bahamian flare. With a 51-slip marina, dive center, and on-site spa, Valentine’s packs a lot into a compact package. Want something a little quieter? Nearby Rock House has a more intimate setting and a slightly lower price tag.

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Scene

Laid-back, polished hotel for couples and families, with lively nightlife

From the street, Valentine’s Resort and Marina looks like a southern country home, with white picket fences, landscaped lawns, and colorful clapboard buildings on the east side of Bay Street. With plenty of space to spread out, the resort has a laid-back and relaxed vibe over by the rooms and pool, with a more upbeat and happening scene by the restaurants. Interiors all feel bright and beachy, with lots of wicker and polished hardwood, as well as just the right amount of rustic, seaside charm.

Despite the quaint decor, this resort is a destination of its own right on Harbour Island. Pop music plays throughout the day at the open-air Roosters Bar and Grill, with a lively social scene into the night. As one of the more popular restaurants on the island, The Boathouse is generally busy but has a more sophisticated and intimate vibe while overlooking the ocean. Both restaurants are well-known amongst locals and visitors as hotspots, and they give this resort its upbeat personality.

With plenty of kid-friendly activities, spacious rooms, and an on-site spa, Valentine’s sees an almost even mix of families and couples. While there are ample common areas and plenty of on-site activities open to the public -- including the dive center, gift shop, coffee shop, and spa -- the hotel tends to be busy but rarely overrun.

Location

Located on Bay Street, a seven-minute walk to Government Dock

Valentine’s Resort and Marina straddles both sides Bay Street, the main thoroughfare of Harbour Island. The hotel has an enviable location on the west side of the island, with stunning views of sunsets over the bay and a seven-minute walk from the water ferries at Government Dock. As it sits right on Bay Street, there are plenty of restaurants and bars within easy walking distance. For anyone looking for local cuisine, the well-known Queen Conch is a seven-minute walk from the hotel. A small strip of local Bahamian bars looking out over the water is a 10-minute walk from the hotel. Most of the grocery stores, clothing stores, and convenience stores close early in the evening so guests should plan to shop during the day. Harbour Island has vibrant nightlife, with Gusty’s nightclub a 15-minute walk from the hotel, where local DJs spin and guests gather to dance until the early hours of the morning.

While the harborside location precludes Valentine’s from having beachfront access, Pink Sands Beach -- considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the Bahamas -- is a 10-minute walk or a five-minute drive across Harbour Island. The hotel is easy to access from North Eleuthera Airport, which is a 10-minute drive from the dock for ferries to Harbour Island. Leaving Harbour Island is just as easy since the ferry runs early in the morning and taxis are readily available.

Rooms

Modern, island-homey rooms; all with outdoor terraces, many with full kitchens

Across all categories, rooms have a modern and sophisticated charm. The look is upscale island-home, with handsome hardwood furniture, brown leather or woven jute chairs, and contemporary dining tables. Hardwood floors accent the modern look and lend a bit of high-class polish. Guests can expect a few tropical accents in the form of palm tree lamps, sharp wall art, and a few floral throw pillows -- it's all tasteful and restrained. Colors include muted yellows and beiges, with some pops of color coming from contemporary artwork and throw pillows.

With only three room categories -- Junior Villa, One-Bedroom Villa, and Two-Bedroom Villa -- there isn’t much difference in rooms when it comes to style. All rooms are spacious -- the smallest has 600 square feet of interior space (56 square meters) -- with outdoor patios or terraces, flat-screen TVs, paddle fans, free Wi-Fi, and living areas (many of which are completely separate). Junior Villas have a kitchenette, while One and Two-Bedroom Villas have full kitchens with modern stoves, dishware, large refrigerators, and dishwashers. Washer-dryers and separate dining areas in some rooms are nice extras, and all come with beach bags and towels. 

Bathrooms are spacious and well-appointed, with Hydro bath products, plenty of light, and ample vanity space. Most bathrooms have a separate shower and tub, while all bathrooms have a separate water closet. 

Features

Sapcious marina and dive center, private pool, and on-site spa

As a resort community, there is a good deal on offer here, though of course the main draw is the marina and dive center. The 51-slip marina offers boaters a chance to fuel up and provides cable hook-up, wireless internet, laundry, and showers. Adjacent to the marina is the on-site dive shop which has snorkel and scuba gear, kayaks, and paddle boats. Additionally, the dive center rents and sells underwater Canon and Olympus cameras for guests to take snorkeling or on dives. With two dive boats for private or large group dives and PADI-certified instructors, its convenient for exploring the 35 dive sites near Valentine’s. 

Across from the dive shop is the resort’s gift shop, Calico Trading, which has beachwear, gifts, and bags on offer for guests. The lobby is staffed 24 hours a day and has a small business center with a few computers. Close to the rooms, the large private pool is fenced in and gated. With ample lounge chairs and blue umbrellas, the pool has plenty of areas for guests to socialize but also get away and sunbathe in privacy. A few grills are on offer for guests who want to rent them for barbecues.

There is no fitness center, something travelers used to four-pearl hotels might miss. The on-site Dermalogica spa provides pedicures, massages, skin therapy, and waxes. Some nice additional amenities include free Wi-Fi, concierge services, and babysitting. 

Food

Casual bar overlooking the marina, intimate and sophisticated restaurant, and coffee house

Dining and drinking are popular at Valentine's with both hotel guests and other visitors to Harbour Island. The open-air Roosters Bar and Grill is modern and sophisticated, with a lacquered bar top, blue-cushioned benches, and gray metal bar stools. Some rustic charm is added by butcher-block dining tables and a wooden dock floor. Open to the public for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Roosters stays busy with pop music bumping throughout the day and multiple TVs playing sports. For a quieter, more sophisticated dining experience, The Boathouse, is also to the public for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Featuring blue and white striped banquets, white and red placemats, mahogany salt and pepper mills, and open French doors, The Boathouse has a casual and elegant vibe throughout. The same menu is on offer at both The Boathouse and Roosters, featuring fresh seafood, burgers, salads, omelets, and a few Bahamian classics. 

Cocoa’s Coffee Shop is on-site for those travelers who need a coffee fix. Offering Starbucks and Lavazza coffee, Cocoa’s is located above the spa. Small snacks and pastries are also available at Cocoa’s as well as a small handful of tables for socializing. Guests should note that Cocoa’s has limited hours.

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Address

Box One, North Eleuthera, Caribbean