Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
More amenities and better views than some of the island’s more expensive hotels
When the 45-room Newstead Belmont Hills Golf Resort & Spa debuted in 2008, it was the first new development on the island in 35 years. To combine the run-down mid-century Newstead Hotel with the high-end Belmont Hills golf community, the grounds were completely demolished and rebuilt. Today, the mossy green hilltop property certainly plays the part of the new kid on the block, with modern guest rooms, a spectacular infinity-edge pool facing the harbor and distant downtown Hamilton, and a tranquil Asian-inspired spa.
The entrance to the resort is somewhat shrouded by the narrow, ocean-side road’s overflowing greenery, but once inside the modern, glass-walled lobby, the breezy open spaces appear to stretch for miles. Furnishings here are unassuming -- contemporary and clean but not particularly special -- but the views over the lower-level infinity-edge pool and harbor are breathtaking. As a result, the waterfront pool is a bit of a scene, with a poolside rum bar arousing perhaps more activity on the weekends than some R&R-seeking guests would prefer.
In addition to some of the island’s newest and most stylish rooms (low furniture, private balconies, and postmodern accents are highlights), the Newstead’s greatest appeal is its range of amenities, of which the stunning infinity-edge pool is just the beginning. Tennis courts, a well-regarded restaurant, a bar and lounge, a tranquil spa, a guest-only water taxi, a decent fitness center, and one of the island’s best golf courses are all steals for the rates, especially when compared to similar resorts like Pompano Beach Club and The Reefs, both of which are slightly more expensive and decades older.
Additional features really push this gem over the edge -- from free shuttles that take guests to the beach, a cycle rental center, and even the airport, to the free round of golf that each guest receives during his or her stay.
Centrally located -- virtually every attraction is within a 20-minute drive -- but not on the beach
Located on the southern side of the inlet that separates downtown Hamilton and Paget Parish, the Newstead Belmont Hills Golf Resort & Spa feels isolated in the best way -- quiet and sedate but only minutes from the lively activity of the island’s main town. Even better, the location allows for the best of both worlds; the city and the beach are a quick drive -- or water taxi -- away, and the resort offers free shuttles to both. The shuttle also transports guests to and from the airport.
In an effort to permit as few vehicles as possible on the island, car rentals are strictly forbidden. Even locals are allowed only a single car per household -- something you’ll likely appreciate when you see the lush, winding roads that unobtrusively snake through the island. Taxis are reliable and metered according to state law, so there is no need to negotiate fares; however, rates are exceptionally high.
Those looking to save on cab fare to locations outside the shuttle zone might consider renting a moped, the islanders’ preferred mode of transportation. While safety may be an issue for some, a local speed limit of just 35 km (about 21 mph) will likely assuage most fears. The resort is one of the best places to try your hand at driving a moped, as it is situated along a small, mostly traffic-less road that is still close to many of the major beaches and sites.
Some of the most modern rooms on the island -- all with private harbor-view balconies
Spread along a gently sloping hillside, all of Newstead Belmont Hill’s 45 units are virtually faultless, lacking even the smallest hint of age or neglect. Each features its own private balcony with high-end wicker furniture (no plastic here) and gorgeous harbor views. Inside, the rooms are stylish and simple with sophisticated furnishings and hardwood floors. Unique to the island on this type of property are the suites, which have their own wood-paneled full kitchens. Bathrooms are equally impressive with whirlpool bathtubs in all units, as well as ornately tiled backsplashes, modern vanities, and marble walls, floors, and countertops. Those who don't prefer modern design, though, might consider the clean design scheme a little too stark -- unfinished even -- with some of the generic paintings a touch too small for the larger walls, and the furniture overtly simple.
A lengthy roster of amenities puts Bermuda’s older and comparably priced resorts to shame.
A well-recommended restaurant, a trendy lounge, and a nearby resort-managed restaurant
Beau Rivage is the island’s only French restaurant, and delicacies like Beef bourguignon and escargots are the favorites. Still, the restaurant manages to break away from a Franco-centric menu with the requisite local seafood, few Asian dishes, and plenty of vegetarian options.
The Sunday brunch is a favorite among locals, with a massive hot buffet, live jazz, and a decadent dessert table (don’t miss the crème brulée). Sushi happy hour takes place daily, and a fun “Chef’s Table” gives guest the opportunity to have their meals prepared at their table.
Beau Rivage is closed on Sunday evenings, though room service is still available. Guests can also head to L’eau Lounge for small bites and cocktails, as well as Blu restaurant, located at the nearby Belmont Hills golf course, which is within walking distance and also reachable via the resort’s free shuttle.
The breezy, laid-back Newstead Belmont Hills Golf Resort & Spa is one of Bermuda’s only properties built within the last decade, and modern rooms, gourmet dining, a serene spa, and a spectacular infinity-edge pool prove it has raised the luxury bar for Bermuda’s more seasoned resorts. Even better, a central location puts nearly every major attraction less than a 20-minute drive away -- something that almost makes up for a lack of beachfront.