This was a trip that almost never happened. We have been going to Sandals resorts since we got married back in 1997. On our previous Sandals trip we earned another 'free' 7 day stay due to our returning guest status. Things had changed since our last 'free' trip, and we didn't read the fine print very carefully. It turns out we needed to book our trip within 1 year of receiving the award and take it within 2 years. Due to the pandemic, that time went by very quickly! We were informed of these deadlines (we missed the booking deadline) and they let us book the trip but we had to take it before September 2023. We had booked a trip to Curacao for May but due to some shenanigans by Jet Blue we ended up not going. Sandals was nice enough to rebook us (on the same day we were supposed to be there), but with the deadline looming we didn't have many choices of resorts, most were sold out for the time period. We were able to book Sandals Royal Bahamian in Nassau, Bahamas, and so off we went.
The resort was one of the smaller Sandals we've stayed at, but one of the draws was a offshore "private" island that we could take a water taxi to during the day. It was listed in many of online searches as one of the best places to snorkel so win-win. We even bought cool light units to use with our Gopro's for underwater photos.
Remember Hurricane Dorian in 2019? It left a path of destruction through the Bahamas with winds up to 185mph tearing through the archipelago. Nassau and Sandals Royal Bahamian were part of that, and the resort had been closed for a while. They were still doing construction whilst we were there. The east building was still being renovated, and at the end of our trip they were starting reconstruction of the dock on the east side of the resort.
After the sunrise shots Hali would often wander around the resort for a while and she always met up with the resort cats. Hali is really allergic to cats, but you wouldn't know that by the amount of time she spent with the kittens.
Unusual for us we spent a lot of time by the pool. There wasn't enough beach for us to do our usual walks, and the Caribbean water was very rough due to storms that had come through. The resort was also dealing with the Sargasso Sea Grass that had come in and was covering the beach. I felt bad for the resort workers who were out there sweltering in the sun trying to remove thick layers of the grass from the beach.
Did we mention it was hot. If we didn't let us just say It.Was.Hot! The ocean water was well into the 80's and the air temperature, even on the beach was in the 90's every day. We spent a lot of time at the pool, resting under an umbrella with many dips into the pool to swim some laps to get cool. There was almost always someone coming around to get drink orders and would bring us plenty of water to stay hydrated.