The tiny Bahamian island of Harbour Island is a blend of culture, style and nature. Harbour Island has been one of our soul recharging spots for years as we were lucky enough to spend time growing up here and it remains one of the most beautiful and inspirational places on earth.
The Dunmore, formerly Dunmore Beach Club, has been the scene of many a happy, formative memory — from childhood family dinners to Mary’s wedding. Returning to Harbour Island last week to stay at the new Dunmore which is under new ownership and has undergone a major renovation, we were trepidatious that our beloved Dunmore would be buried beneath a new glossy veneer….
Winding our golf cart down the drive to the hotel, our worries melted away as Rasheda, a friend from years past greeted us at the chic new “welcome building” with Goombay Smashes in hand.
Upon seeing the black and white cabana stripes on a white wicker bench atop a sisal rug, we were excited to see the rest of the updated property.
Making our way along the lush garden path down to the Club House and main building, we were happy to see the grounds were as we remembered them. Sun drenched cottages are connected by limestone paths bordered by bouganvilla and tropical vegetation weighed down with flowers.
Entering the main building we were speechless! The original building with the same footprint is still there but the interiors have been utterly transformed.
One of the things we always loved about Dunmore Beach Club was the old school charm that it emanated. Design genius Amanda Lindroth has managed to retain that feeling while infusing the entire property with a fresh, clean, preppy-modern, beach chic look. John Robshaw textiles, rattan furniture, pops of bright coral and orange and strategically arranged conch shells are inspired, light and airy all at once.
We ran from room to room taking it all in like children at Christmas. Even the powder rooms are works of interior design art!
Two of the most massive changes that the property seems in retrospect to have always been begging for are a gorgeous new pool and a covered dining patio. The lawn that was the scene of Mary’s wedding tent, now is a stunning pool which is flanked by an open air pool pavilion.
Seating areas and a backgammon table are housed in the central area with gym equipment for hard bodies in the adjacent areas. We confess that the only items in our suitcases that remained unworn were our gym clothes and tennis shoes!! Hopefully beach walks and swimming count for something?
The patio which existed in the hotel’s former incarnation, was nice– how could it not be perched on a hill overlooking the beach? Now, what was nice is fabulous. Amanda Lindroth white washed everything and added a white canopy structure to offer much needed shade and some protection from wind. Dark wood tables are offset by whimsical white director’s chairs which fan out around orange, pink and white striped sofas, perfect for lounging on with a rum drink we discovered.
Although we ate all of our meals out on the patio, the dining room looks fantastic as well. With black and white photographs in orange lacquered frames harkening back to the glamour days of our parent’s generation, intermixed with sea fans and artistic shell pieces, an inviting allure has been created.
We stayed in Pink North, a lovely Ocean View Suite perched just above the pool pavilion. We loved our room which was L-shaped– a bedroom with mini bar and fridge and large adjacent bathroom, as well as a sitting area with a daybed, lucite tables and a white lacquered desk which was an ideal spot for writing our daily blog posts!
All of the cottages are gorgeous and similarly decorated with variations on color. One note is that the “North” cottages and rooms usually offer a bit more privacy due to how the property is laid out. Two of our other favorites are Lime South and North and Aqua North.
The Ocean House is a two story option that is a perfect option for a family as it offers two large bedrooms with enormous bathrooms, a kitchen and an additional single bedroom. Mary stayed here the night before her wedding and on her wedding night with Napper! This is an ideal set up for a bride as there is plenty of room to get ready and is the most heavenly setting for such a momentous occasion.
The staff at The Dunmore is unsurpassed in terms of their friendliness, helpfulness and sincerity. We adore them. They set the tone at this magical spot. Additionally, all of the other guests we met — from Italy, England and all over the USA, were delightful, interesting and interested. There is a relaxed open spirit in the air here that lends itself to a genuine camaraderie and sharing of ideas and inspirations. What a unique and special place for which we are truly grateful for simply existing!
All in all, we are reluctant to share the Dunmore with you all as we truly do feel it is our home away from home. A sublime sanctuary where we recharge and come back to our daily lives invigorated and refreshed! Thank you to everyone at The Dunmore for a fabulous visit.
Til we meet again, we hold you in our hearts. xoxoxox